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Friday, January 30, 2009

Care from a stranger

I remember how tough it was as a young family. Hubby working multiple jobs, going to grad school. Me trying to stay sane while juggling little ones at home. It was a stressful time. Sometimes a dollar just wouldn’t stretch as far as you wanted.

It was during this time of our life that I took our only car in to be tuned up. We had a strict budget and had saved enough to get the tune up it needed. While I was waiting, the car technician, an older gentleman, called me over to talk about the car. As they often do, he recommended some repairs to be done. But there was one that he said was a matter of safety. I can’t remember what exactly it was, but I do remember him telling me that it was imperative we have that part fixed.

I called Hubby and we discussed the problem. But, with finances the way they were, there was no alternative. We couldn’t make the repair.

Somehow, through no ones fault but my own, I ended up in tears when I tried to tell the car technician we couldn’t make the repair. He again, very kindly but clearly, stressed the importance of the repair. And I again, told him we had no choice, the repair would have to wait.

When I went to pay for the tune up, the car tech said he had done the repair because it needed to be done. He then proceeded to pull out the sixty some odd dollars it cost out of his own wallet, and put it into the register in my behalf. I think he said something about how he would want his own daughter to be safe.

I never knew his name. I don’t even remember where it was I took the car. But I will always remember this gentleman’s kindness to our family that day.

Friday, January 23, 2009


Every once and a while we get take out from one of our favorite Mexican Restaurants, On the Border.

Like many restaurants, there is a separate entrance for the take out customers. It is here I usually, hurriedly enter, get my food and go.

Only on this day when I entered, I faced the back of a very, very old woman, hunched over the menu at the checkout stand. It was obvious, she wasn’t aware this was for the HURRIED people.

She talked with the cashier about each and every item on the menu.

Going over each ingredient. How it tasted. If it was spicy. Well, this little exchange went back and forth between the woman and the cashier for quite a while.

Then, just as you thought she was ready to order, she would begin again with another item on the menu. I found it a little amusing, not being in a hurry today. But the man behind me was very agitated.

“Old people,” he breathed. “They are always getting in the way!”

“Naw,” I responded. “I am sure I will be there one day.”

“Well, I won’t!” he proudly stated.

(Nevermind, that he looked almost the same age as the woman.)

The cashier was so pleasant. She knew we were waiting, and communicated to us occasionally that she appreciated our patience.

She was the only take out girl, no one else to help. And even though her take out line was severely backed up and no one came to help her, this cashier treated this woman as though she was her most favorite grandma. Patiently going over each item. Smiling at her when she couldn’t decide between all the yummy options. And eventually, she successfully helped the woman settle on a dish that would please her palate and wallet.

Finally, 15 minutes later, the woman paid and turned to wait for her take out food. She hesitated, and turned back.

“What was your name, dear?”

The cashier smiled warmly and said, “Valarie.”

Friday, January 9, 2009

One Small Act

I have been so blessed in my life. I have known a wonderful amount of people who are good to the core. So good, they make you want to be good yourself. I have seen kindness in strangers and friends alike. I love honoring these stories. And this week I get to share yet another experience with you. Next week, I would love to hear from you.

This is a story of real life angel who made all the difference in the life of my son. A teacher who continued to love my son well after he had left her classroom.

There was a teacher in second grade that knew what the children needed. For S, it was making him feel important with math. He was a whiz at it and she encouraged him to excel beyond the typical 2nd grade math skills. Everyday the class would do “brain warm-ups” with different math problems. Everyday S would try to “give her a headache” with fractions, powers and other difficult math equations. At night hubby would teach him a new one to try out on his teacher.

Oh she would make such a fuss! How could this little 2nd grader be so cruel as to give her such a math problem. Surely she would get a headache. S ate it up, solved the problem and strutted through the day on his math cloud.

He felt important.

These equations were written down each day on a piece of paper and kept at the front of the class until the next day’s equation replaced it.

At the close of the year, this teacher gave S the entire years worth of equations. That was almost 7 years ago. Every time we clean out S’s room, I ask if he still wants to keep it. Every time, he wants to hold on to it. He thumbs through the pages with a little smirk, remembering creating some of these equations for this teacher.

But the unusual thing about this teacher is what she did the following year. S sort of blended into his 3rd grade class and was really having a tough time emotionally. I happened to mention this to his 2nd grade teacher and she stepped up to the plate. She asked him to come in at a specific time EACH day to show her current class tough math equations. After only a few days, S was back to his old self. Excelling now in 3rd grade, smiling more and loving his special assignment.

This teacher didn’t have to do that. I wouldn’t have thought anything of it had she never helped S. But I think about it ALL the time because she did. She just stepped forward and said, “Hey, I think I can help.” Then she did.

This teacher earned a spot in my heart forever. She even came to S’s Eagle Court of Honor.

One person did something so small. But it changed my child. Improved him. Helped him.

Just one person.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Loving the new look!!!

Thank you LEE for the perfect theme for this blog!!! This is so much better than I could have imagined!!!

I hope everyone enjoys it as much as I do!