The "Pay It Forward" Challenge

Thursday, November 10, 2016

God, my family, my health, my home, my doggies, my wonderful country, good coffee, Disneyland, cozy blankets, Octobers, Christmas, cupcakes, ice cream, pizza, wine, candles, long walks through list could go on and on with all the things, big and little, that I am thankful for. I think we all get so caught up in getting through life, that we forget that just the simple fact that we wake up still breathing each morning is a reason to be thankful. This holiday season, I am challenging myself to be thankful every day, not just on Thanksgiving, and to show my gratefulness by "paying it forward" whenever I can. 

Baylee is not old enough yet to really get it, but soon enough she will be, so starting this year I want to instill a tradition in our family where we spend the season doing at least one good deed a week. It's amazing how much the little things can make a big difference in someone's day. Have you ever had someone ahead of you pay for your Starbucks in the drive-thru? I have, and it literally can change my whole demeanor the rest of the day knowing that there are still gracious humans in this world.

Here are some of my ideas for paying it forward this season:

1. Pay for someones coffee at Starbucks in the drive thru.
2. Leave a note, or some baked treats in your mailbox for your mail carrier thanking them for all their hard work.
3. Pay a compliment to a random stranger.
4. Donate money to a good cause of your choice.
5. Bake holiday cookies and treats put them in mason jars with a bow and pass them out to neighbors.
6. Leave a more generous tip than you usually would to your server.
7. Go out of your way to thank someone who is usually underappreciated (your garbage man, a custodian, a grocery store clerk, etc.).
8. Donate clothes, books, and toys that you no longer need.
9. Participate in Operation Christmas Child by filling a shoe box with toys and supplies. (Click the link to find a drop off near you on November 14th-21st.)  
10. Hold the door open for someone, even if you are in a rush.
11. Donate food or money to your local church for their homeless collections. (Many churches also supply Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners to those who cant afford it.)
12. Let someone go ahead of you in line at the grocery store.
13. Take a friend or relative that you don't get to see very often out to lunch.
14. Leave a baggie with $1 in quarters at a vending machine with an anonymous note that says "This snack's on me!"
15. Take a thank you note and some cookies or cupcakes to your local fire department, police department, or hospital for the staff to enjoy. 

We only have 6 more weeks until Christmas, and yet so many more simple ways besides the 15 ideas on this list that we can make someones day. Please comment with any more ideas! Even just a simple smile for a stranger can make a difference. :) 

If there's anything I want most for my daughter, it's not just for her to find the goodness in this world, but for her to be the goodness. 

Until next time! XoXoXo


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