KINDNESS

KINDNESS Awareness Week
Feb. 11-17, 2018

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Stories of Kindness

STORIES OF KINDNESS

This page is devoted to the KINDNESS stories we have collected over the years and want to share with our readers. Some of these are from students of Dr. Wall and others have been sent to us from friends and other KIND people. Some are from one of our two KINDNESS books, which are presented in our KINDNESS Store). You will notice that several of these stories are from school settings. We encourage these types of stories, as they give teachers, parents and administrators ideas as to how they might build KINDNESS into their school curriculum. Read, enjoy and use as you wish. 

We love to hear your stories, so please send us your KINDNESS accounts via e-mailThese are difficult to include as it can be hard to determine actual stories vs. made-up ones. It has been our experience to receive numerous excellent stories that upon examination were found to be from creative writing classes and not actual fact. On this page, we are interested in only those stories that can be verified as true.  If not verified, we will so state. Hopefully, you will share your stories so we all can see just how extensive KINDNESS is and that it does not need to be a big event to be a kind story. Dates, places and times along with name and e‑mail addresses will greatly help us in determining whether your story is suitable for this chapter.

E‑mail your submission to [email protected].

 

Katie's Story
A Marine Experiences Kindness
31 Jars of Kindness
Jajo, Inc
Perfume
Stephanie's Story
The Feeling of Kindness
A Random Act of Kindness by Jim Luff
Kindness is Essential in Our Daily Lives
Marine Corp. Act of Kindness
An Angel Wrote
What Goes Around, Comes Around
Important Life Lessons
Smile
The Twenty Dollar Christmas
Who YOU Are Makes A Difference

Katie's Story

Ann Thomas sent us the following Facebook post by her granddaughter. Fourteen-year-old Katie Thomas lives in Shawnee, Kansas.

 

From Katie Thomas:

I donated $5 to a struggling church today...a random act of kindness. 


P.S.: My dad's old professor...thank u for teaching me that lesson. The world owes alot to u ;) Like if u would commit a random act of kindness. Go make our world a little bit better each step of the way.

A Marine Experiences Kindness
Kimberly R. Haagenson sent us this touching story about her son, who joined the Marines in October 2010:

Zeb, 22, is back home now, attending college and "slowly domesticating himself," in the words of his mother. Part of that process is, obviously, the need for a washer and dryer. Jeb found a beautiful, front-loading washer/dryer set on E-bay, and was very excited to get it for an amazing $200. He was very excited, thrilled to have the set, and even pleased that the guy who sold it to him was such a nice person.

But then it got even better.

When Zeb arrived home, he has an e-mail from the seller: "Your Paypal has been refunded your $200. Thank you for serving our Country!"

What a perfect example of Kindness!
31 Jars of Kindness

Bobbie Gollehon is a returning student at Bakersfield College. Having enrolled in a summer speech class, she was required to give a 10-minute speech as her final exam. Bobbie chose "Random Acts of Kindness" as her topic.

As chance would have it, one of Bobbie’s classmates, Cady, lives next door to Dr. Chuck Wall, President and Founder of Kindness Incorporated. Cady told Bobbie about her neighbor and then asked Dr. Wall to call Bobbie, who wanted to meet him and use information about the Kindness organization as part of her speech. After an extended phone conversation, Bobbie had the material she needed. Her speech was a tremendous success, earning Bobbie an "A" for the class.

But Bobbie didn’t stop there. She loves to can fruit into jam, which she gives to friends and family. Following her contact with Dr. Wall and Kindness Inc., the busy student made up 31 jars of jam—one for each person in her class. Atop each jar, Bobbie affixed a label printed with the Kindness phrase: Today, I will commit one random act of senseless KINDNESSWill you? As she handed out the jars of jam, Bobbie asked each class member to pass on her act of kindness. “When you’ve eaten all the jam, I’d like you to wash the jar, fill it with something tasty and pass it along to someone else. Please include this same kindness phrase when you pass it on, and ask your recipients to continue the process of passing it on.”

Bobbie knows how to put Kindness into action!

Wichita firm takes KINDNESS to the streets

The folks at Jajo, Inc., in Wichita, KS, prefer not to be pigeonholed into the category of "full-service advertising agency." Nor do they want to be thought of as simply a "marketing advertising firm." They describe themselves as "a group of empowered ad people obsessed with strengthening clients willing to be true to themselves instead of being everything to everyone."

During the 2009 holiday season, Jajo's managing partners set out to do something special for and through their employees. Following is the plan in a nutshell, as described by Managing Partner Shawn Stuckey.

"Every year my partner and I plan out a fun Christmas party for employees, ranging from bowling, massages, and laser tag to shooting machine guns at a local range. This year we decided to do something totally different. We randomly paired up eight teams (two per team) and gave them $100 cash to give away any way they wanted."

The teams were given only two rules:

(1) They had one hour to complete the mission, and

(2) Each team had to document their giving on video.

"We also challenged each team to come back to the office with the most compelling story (documented on video) to share with the office," Stuckey reports. "In return, a prize for themselves. When everyone returned we all watched the stories and chose what we thought was the most compelling. In our minds, they were all winners."
Flowers for Mom

When I was a young boy about 8 years old, my younger sisters and I got the idea to buy something for my mother for Mother's day.  Money was hard to come by. We went around to the neighbors and asked for pop bottles. Back then, soda pop was sold in bottles, and they were washed and refilled. There was a deposit on the bottles of $.02. per bottle  We were able to get three cartons, just 18 bottles, making a refund of $.36. I also had three cents saved.

So with a grand total of $.39 we walked uptown (about a mile) to where we knew a florist was located.When we went inside, someone asked what we wanted. We told them we wanted to buy flowers for Mothers  Day.  I reached into my pocket and pulled out our whole stash of cash, asking if that would be enough. 

Another gentleman, who I am sure was the owner, came over, looked us over, and said "just a minute".  He went in back and came out with a geranium plant with gold foil wrapping around the pot. He took my three dimes, a nickle, and four pennies, and said, "Thank you very much." I had no idea that the cost was about four times as much. And we went proudly home carring a flower plant for Mom.
 

John Adams

Perfume

As she stood in front of her 5th grade class on the very first day of school, she told the children an untruth.  Like most teachers, she looked at her students and said that she loved them all the same.  However, that was impossible, because there in the front row, slumped in his seat, was a little boy named Teddy Stoddard.

Mrs. Thompson had watched Teddy the year before and noticed that he did not play well with the other children, that his clothes were messy and that he constantly needed a bath.  In addition, Teddy could be unpleasant. 

It got to the point where Mrs. Thompson would actually take delight in marking his papers with a broad red pen, making bold X's and then putting a big "F" at the top of his papers. 

At the school where Mrs. Thompson taught, she was required to review each child's past records and she put Teddy's off until last.  However, when she reviewed his file, she was in for a surprise.

Teddy's first grade teacher wrote, "Teddy is a bright child with a ready laugh.  He does his work neatly and has good manners ... he is a joy to be around." 

His second grade teacher wrote, "Teddy is an excellent student, well liked by his classmates, but he is troubled because his mother has a terminal illness and life at home must be a struggle." 

His third grade teacher wrote, "His mother's death has been hard on him. He tries to do his best, but his father doesn't show much interest and his home life will soon affect him if some steps aren't taken." 

Teddy's fourth grade teacher wrote, "Teddy is withdrawn and doesn't show much interest in school.  He doesn't have many friends and he sometimes sleeps in class."

By now, Mrs. Thompson realized the problem and she was ashamed of herself.  She felt even worse when her students brought her Christmas presents, wrapped in beautiful ribbons and bright paper, except for Teddy's.  His present was clumsily wrapped in the heavy brown paper that he got from a grocery bag.  Mrs. Thompson took pains to open it in the middle of the other presents.  Some of the children started to laugh when she found a rhinestone bracelet with some of the stones missing, and a bottle that was one-quarter full of perfume.  But she stifled the children's laughter when she exclaimed how pretty the bracelet was, putting it on, and dabbing some of the perfume on her wrist.  Teddy Stoddard stayed after school that day just long enough to say, "Mrs. Thomson, today you smelled just like my Mom used to."  After the children left, she cried for at least an hour.

On that very day, she quit teaching reading, writing and arithmetic.  Instead, she began to teach children.  Mrs. Thompson paid particular attention to Teddy.  As she worked with him, his mind seemed to come alive.  The more she encouraged him, the faster he responded.  By the end of the year, Teddy had become one of the smartest children in the class and, despite her lie that she would love all the children the same, Teddy became one of her "teacher's pets."

A year later, she found a note under her door, from Teddy, telling her that she was still the best teacher he ever had in his whole life. 

Six years went by before she got another note from Teddy.  He then wrote that he had finished high school, third in his class, and she was still the best teacher he ever had in his whole life. 

Four years after that, she got another letter, saying that while things had been tough at times, he'd stayed in school, had stuck with it, and would soon graduate from college with the highest of honors.  He assured Mrs. Thompson that she was still the best and favorite teacher he had ever had in his whole life.

Then four more years passed and yet another letter came.  This time he explained that after he got his bachelor's degree, he decided to go a little further.  The letter explained that she was still the best and favorite teacher he ever had.  But now his name was a little longer.  The letter was signed, Theodore F. Stoddard, MD . 

The story does not end there.  You see, there was yet another letter that spring.  Teddy said he had met this girl and was going to be married.  He explained that his father had died a couple of years ago and he was wondering if Mrs. Thompson might agree to sit at the wedding in the place that was usually reserved for the mother of the groom. 

Of course, Mrs. Thompson did.  And guess what?  She wore that bracelet, the one with several rhinestones missing.  Moreover, she made sure she was wearing the perfume that Teddy remembered his mother wearing on their last Christmas together. 

They hugged each other, and Dr. Stoddard whispered in Mrs. Thompson's ear, "Thank you,  Mrs. Thompson, for believing in me.  Thank you so much for making me feel important and showing me that I could make a difference."

Mrs. Thompson, with tears in her eyes, whispered back.  She said, "Teddy, you have it all wrong.  You were the one who taught me that I could make a difference.  I didn't know how to teach until I met you."

Warm someone's heart today … pass this along.  Just try to make a difference in someone's life today … tomorrow … just do it.

Random acts of kindness, I think they call it?

"Believe in angels, then return the favor."

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Stephanie's Story

Hi, I'm Stephanie Hable.  I'm 13 years old and writing about "Random Acts of Kindness" for my school newspaper.  Today at lunch I was sitting at a table with a group of friends.  They were going to catch up with someone else, so I decided to go see my other group of friends (there are many groups in middle school).  We were about to head to the library when I heard someone call my name.  I turned around and saw my friend, Lindsey, with my wallet and cell phone.  She told me that I had left them out on the table.  I thanked her for doing such a kind deed, and she ran off. 
 
Later that day I was heading off to P.E., when I saw something on the ground.  It was a wallet with $20 - $40 sticking out.  There was a teacher nearby, so I told her my name and gave her the wallet.  She asked me to step outside.  The student thanked me, like I had done to Lindsey, and I was handed three kindness tickets ( used for drawings).  Then I mentioned Lindsey (who was given three tickets also).  By the time I got home I was so overwhelmed with joy. 

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The Feeling of Kindness

by Patrick Flegler
Submitted October, 2000

 

I did a random act of kindness this weekend. I went with my dad from the family that sort of affectionately adopted me, to the UCLA medical center for his final checkup for his prostate cancer operation. His wife couldn't go because of an injured knee. Sunday night, while he was watching a foot ball game, in our hotel room, I finally started reading the book "Selling Lemonade for Free." 

Wow! What a great book! I'm not finished yet, but I practiced saying hello to strangers as we got into the elevator, or as others got into the evaluator. What a reaction. Nobody ever talks on an elevator, let alone say a greeting to one another. The reaction was heart filling. 

Everyone should read this book! I feel that I have practiced most of the suggestions as often as I can. However, I am going to make an even greater point to practice acts of kindness everyday.

 

 

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A Random Act of Kindness

by Jim Luff
Submitted October, 1999

 

One hot summer I was traveling down the freeway on a day excursion to Los Angeles. During my travel down the highway another motorist suddenly started merging into my lane. Being in the far right lane, my car was forced onto the shoulder of the road. Being a professional driver, I maneuvered my car back onto the highway without allowing road rage to consume me.

While I wasn’t very happy with the person for cutting me off, I decided to consider it an honest mistake. A lack of attention to the lane change. A driver lost in a good daydream. It certainly could not have been an intentional act. The car sped away after cutting me off and soon was out of sight.

After a while, I came around a curve and found the same motorist on the
 side of the road. He was an elderly gentleman who was pacing along the side of the freeway on this hot day. With no call box 

 in sight and the nearest services being at least twenty miles away, I decided to stop and see what the problem was.


The man’s car had a flat tire and while he had a spare ti
re, he had no jack. I decided to help him by changing his tire for him and allowed him to sit in my a

ir-conditioned car while I changed his tire. Fifteen minutes later, I was hot, sweaty and dirty, but I sure did feel good after a Random Act of Kindness to someone who had earlier run me off the road.

 

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Kindness Is Essential In Our Daily Lives

By Wilma L. Espinoza
Submitted October, 1999

Incidents of violence in school, home, business and other public and private settings are too often the lead story in the evening news. Particularly gruesome stories are reported nationally. Every day, local community newspapers are filled with stories about unprovoked violence and violence provoked by road rage, jealousy, group rivalries and misunderstanding. Other acts of disrespect, annoyance and violence go unreported on a daily basis. These actions result in an atmosphere of fear and general mistrust and a desire by many people to isolate themselves from the rest of society.

We at Kindness Inc. believe Wilma is right and that we must continue our efforts to bring our message to people around the world.

 

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Kindness to a Marine

He had just heard the news his father passed away and he was preparing to make flight arrangements. He went to get a last-minute haircut. "The only thing nice I had to wear (to the funeral) was my dress blues, " said Williams, recalling the day. "I wanted to get a fresh haircut."

When he arrived at the Kaneohe Bay main barbershop in the Mokapu Mall, like any other Saturday, it was crowded. Not knowing when his flight time would be, he asked one of the barbers if he could get a haircut right away. He explained his situation to her.

Nhanh Pham was the barber Williams spoke to, and after she finished with her customer, she motioned to Williams to sit in her chair. While Williams was receiving his haircut, the other barbers in the shop came to Williams to offer their condolences.

Pham finished the haircut and Williams prepared to pay her. As he was pulling out his cash, Pham refused payment. She told him his haircut was free, and she shook his hand and gave him some money the barbers in the shop had collected. They wanted to make sure Williams would have some money to buy flowers for the funeral.

Because of the kind gesture, the barbers were presented with a certificate of commendation Monday from CSSG-3 Commanding Officer Col. Richard M. Nixon and Brig. Gen. R. E. Parker Jr., the MCB Hawaii commanding general.

"They didn’t have to do that, " Williams graciously commented. "They did something that was above and beyond their duties."

Williams used the money for what it was intended for, too. He bought his father a dozen roses in a bouquet. Williams said, “The money really did come in handy.”

"The way I feel is that it was no big deal, "said Rosalie Le, one of the barbers who contributed to the collection. "We are all human and we help each other."

As for the woman who initiated the day’s kindness, Pham, she said she simply felt sympathy for Williams and wanted to do something nice. Using as few words necessary, the soft-spoken Pham summed up her kindness by simply stating, " I felt sorry for him."



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An Angel Wrote ...

Submitted February, 1999


Many people will walk in and out of your life,
but only true friends will leave footprints in your heart.

To handle yourself, use your head,
To handle others, use your heart.

Anger is one letter short of danger.

If someone betrays you once, it's his fault.
If they betray you twice, it's your fault.

Great minds discuss ideas;
Average minds discuss events;
Small minds discuss people.

God gives every bird it's food,

but He does not throw it into it's nest.

He who loses money, loses much;
He who loses a friend, loses more;
He who loses faith, loses all.

Beautiful young people are acts of nature,
but beautiful old people are works of art.

Learn from the mistakes of others.
You can't live long enough to make them all yourself.

The tongue weighs practically nothing,
but so few people can hold it.

Friends, you and me...
you brought another friend,
and then there were 3.
We started our group...
Our circle of friends...
and like that circle,
there is no beginning...
there is no end.

 

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What Goes Around, Comes Around

Submitted February 22, 1999

 

His name was Fleming, and he was a poor Scottish farmer.

One day, while trying to eke out a living for his family, he heard a cry for help coming from a nearby bog. He dropped his tools and ran to the bog. There, mired to his waist in black muck, was a terrified boy, screaming and struggling to free himself. Farmer Fleming saved the lad from what could have been a slow and terrifying death.

The next day, a fancy carriage pulled up to the Scotman's sparse surroundings. An elegantly dressed nobleman stepped out and introduced himself as the father of the boy Farmer Fleming had saved. "I want to repay you," said the nobleman. "You saved my son's life."

"No, I can't accept payment for what I did," the Scottish farmer replied, waving off the offer.

At that moment, the farmer's own son came to the door of the family hovel.  "Is that your son?" the nobleman asked.

"Yes," the farmer replied proudly.

"I'll make you a deal. Let me take him and give him a good education. If the lad is anything like his father, he'll grow to a man you can be proud of."

And that he did. In time, Farmer Fleming's son graduated from St. Mary's Hospital Medical School in London, and went on to become known throughout the world as the noted Sir Alexander Fleming, the discoverer of Penicillin.

Years afterward, the nobleman's son was stricken with pneumonia. What saved him? Penicillin. The name of the nobleman? Lord Randolph Churchill. His son's name? Sir Winston Churchill.

Someone once said what goes around comes around.

And now you know...

 

 

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Important Life Lessons

Submitted March 8, 1999

1.  Most Important Question

During my second month of nursing school, our professor gave us a pop quiz. I was a conscientious student and had breezed through the questions, until I read the last one: "What is the first name of the woman who cleans the school?" Surely this was some kind of joke. I had seen the cleaning woman several times. She was tall, dark-haired and in her 50s, but how would I know her name? I handed in my paper leaving the last question blank. Before class ended, one student asked if the last question would count toward our quiz grade. "Absolutely," said the professor. "In your careers you will meet many people. All are significant. They deserve your attention and care, even if all you do is smile and say 'hello.'" I've never forgotten that lesson. I also learned her name was Dorothy.

 

2.  Pickup in the Rain

One night, at 11:30 pm, an older African American woman was standing on the side of an Alabama highway trying to endure a lashing rain storm. Her car had broken down and she desperately needed a ride. Soaking wet, she decided to flag down the next car. A young white man stopped to help her—generally unheard of in those conflict-filled 60s. The man took her to safety, helped her get assistance and put her into a taxi cab.

She seemed to be in a big hurry. She wrote down his address, thanked him and drove away. Seven days went by and a knock came on the man's door. To his surprise, a giant console color TV was delivered to his home. A special note was attached. It read:

Thank you so much for assisting me on the highway the other night. The rain drenched not only my clothes but my spirits. Then you came along. Because of you, I was able to make it to my dying husband's bedside just before he passed away. God bless you for helping me and unselfishly serving others.

Sincerely,
Mrs. Nat King Cole


3.  Always Remember Those Who Serve

In the days when an ice cream sundae cost much less, a 10-year-old boy entered a hotel coffee shop and sat at a table. A waitress put a glass of water in front of him.

"How much is an ice cream sundae?" the child asked.

"Fifty cents," replied the waitress.

The little boy pulled his hand out of his pocket and studied a number of coins in it. "How much is a dish of plain ice cream?" he inquired.

Some people were now waiting for a table and the waitress was a bit impatient. "Thirt-five cents," she said brusquely.

The little boy again counted the coins. "I'll have the plain ice cream," he said.

The waitress brought the ice cream, put the bill on the table and walked away. The boy finished the ice cream, paid the cashier and departed. When the waitress came back, she began wiping down the table and then swallowed hard at what she saw. There, placed neatly beside the empty dish, were two nickels and five pennies - her tip.


4.  The Obstacle In Our Path

In ancient times, a king had a boulder placed on a roadway. Then he hid himself and watched to see if anyone would remove the huge rock. Some of the king's wealthiest merchants and courtiers came by and simply walked around it. Many loudly blamed the king for not keeping the roads clear, but none did anything about getting the big stone out of the way. Then a peasant came along carrying a load of vegetables. On approaching the boulder, a peasant laid down his burden and tried to move the stone to the side of the road. After much pushing and straining, he finally succeeded. As the peasant picked up his load of vegetables, he noticed a purse lying in the road where the boulder had been. The purse contained many gold coins and a note from the king indicating that the gold was for the person who removed the boulder from the roadway. The peasant learned what many others never understand. Every obstacle presents an opportunity to improve one's condition.


5.  Giving Blood

Many years ago, when I worked as a volunteer at Stanford Hospital, I got to know a little girl named Liz who was suffering from a rare and serious disease. Her only chance of recovery appeared to be a blood transfusion from her 5-year-old brother, who had miraculously survived the same disease and had developed the antibodies needed to combat the illness. The doctor explained the situation to ther little brother, and asked the boy if he would be willing to give his blood to his sister.

I saw him hesitate for only a moment before taking a deep breath and saying, "Yes, I'll do it if it will save Liz." As the transfusion progressed, he lay in bed next to his sister and smiled, as we all did, seeing the color returning to her cheeks. Then his face grew pale and his smile faded. He looked up at the doctor and asked with a trembling voice, "Will I start to die right away?"

Being young, the boy had misunderstood the doctor; he thought he was going to have to give his sister all of his blood.

 

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Smile

Submitted October 31, 1998

I am a mother of three (ages 14, 12, 3) and have recently completed my college degree. The last class I had to take was Sociology. The teacher was absolutely inspiring with the qualities that I wish every human being had been graced with. Her last project of the term was called "Smile." The class was asked to go out and smile at three people and document their reaction. I am a very friendly person and always smile at everyone and say, hello anyway.....so, I thought, this would be a piece of cake literally.

Soon after we were assigned the project, my husband, youngest son and I went out to McDonalds, one crisp March morning. It was just our way of sharing special play time with our son. We were standing in line, waiting to be served, when all of a suddeneveryone around us began to back away, and then even my husband did.

I did not move an inch...an overwhelming feeling of panic welled up inside of me as I turned to see why they had moved. As I turned around I smelled a horrible "dirty body" smell... and there standing behind me were two poor homeless men. As I looked down at the short gentleman, close to me, he was "smiling". His beautiful sky blue eyes were full of God's Light as he searched for acceptance. He said, "Good day" as he counted the few coins he had been clutching. The second man fumbled with his hands as he stood behind his friend. I realized the second man was mentally deficient and the blue eyed gentle man was his salvation. I held my tears....as I stood there with them. The young lady at the counter asked him what they wanted. He said, "Coffee is all Miss" because that was all they could afford. To sit in the restaurant and warm up, they had to buy something...they just wanted to be warm.

Then I really felt it...the compulsion was so great I almost reached out and embraced the little man with the blue eyes. That is when I noticed all eyes in the restaurant were set on me...judging my every action. I smiled and asked the young lady behind the counter to give me two more breakfast meals on a separate tray. I then walked around the corner to the table that the men had chosen as a resting spot. I put the tray on the table and laid my hand on the blue eyed gentleman's cold hand. He looked up at me, with tears in his eyes, and said, "Thank you." I leaned over, began to pat his hand and said,"I did not do this for you...God is here working through me to give you hope." I started to cry as I walked away to join my husband and son.

When I sat down my husband smiled at me and said, "That is why God gave you to me honey....to give me hope." We held hands for moment and at that time we knew that only because of the Grace that we had been given that we were able to give. We are not church goers but we are believers. That day showed me the pure Light of God's sweet love.

I returned to college, on the last evening of class, with this story in hand. I turned in "my project" and the instructor read it....then she looked up at me and said, "Can I share this?" I slowly nodded as she got the attention of the class. She began to read and that is when I knew that we, as human beings and being part of God, share this need to heal people and be healed. In my own way I had touched the people at McDonalds, my husband,son, instructor, and every soul that shared the classroom on the last night I spent as a college student. I graduated with one of the biggest lessons I would ever learn....UNCONDITIONAL ACCEPTANCE.

Much love and compassion is being sent to each and every person who may read this. Learn how to LOVE PEOPLE AND USE THINGS - NOT LOVE THINGS AND USE PEOPLE. If you think this story has touched you in any way, please send this to everyone you know.


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The Twenty Dollar Christmas

Description from the new book
by Robie Lester Eccleston entitled:

The Twenty Dollar Christmas

Emmy Lou Clancy and her mother embark on a journey that takes them into a world of new beginnings.

She is a child who has never had a Christmas tree nor any of the wonders that occur at Christmas, but she demonstrates the True Meaning of Christmas better than any privileged person.

Settling in a small Missouri town, the child once more experiences the pain of rejection and discrimination but by her inner strength, her bouoyant spirit, her unswerving faith in the good in all people, and the depth of belief in her dreams, she succeeds in turning a tide of distrust into one of love. She is helped in her times of distress by the wisdom of her very own Tree Angel.

In so doing, she is able to attract a miracle of light and alter the lives of all those around her. The friendships which she attracts last forever.

Emmy Lou was blessed with the knowledge that there is an inviolate connection between all things and all peoples.

May this story of her faith in the power of light be one to which we should all aspire.

For more information contact:
Robie Lester Eccleston
P.O. Box 158
Fillmore, CA 93016-0158


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Who YOU Are Makes A Difference

Submitted by Gretchen
Submitted March 1, 1998


A teacher in New York decided to honor each of her seniors in high school by telling them the difference they each made. Using a process developed by Helice Bridges of Del Mar, California, she called each student to the front of the class, one at a time. First she told them how the student made a difference to her and the class. Then she presented each of them with a blue ribbon imprinted with gold letter which read, "Who I Am Makes a Difference."

Afterwards the teacher decided to do a class project to see what kind of impact recognition would have on a community. She gave each of the students three more ribbons and instructed them to go out and spread this acknowledgment ceremony. then they were to follow up on the results, see who honored whom and report back to the class in about a week. One of the boys in the class went to a junior executive in a nearby company and honored him for helping him with his career planning.

He gave him a blue ribbon and put it on his shirt. Then he gave him two extra ribbons, and said, "We're doing a class project on recognition, and we'd like you to go out, find somebody to honor, give them a blue ribbon, then give them the extra blue ribbon so they can acknowledge a third person to keep this acknowledgment ceremony going. Then please report back to me and tell me what happened."

Later that day the junior executive went in to see his boss, who had been noted, by the way, as being kind of a grouchy fellow. He sat his boss down and he told him that he deeply admired him for being a creative genius. The boss seemed very surprised. The junior executive asked him if he would accept the gift of the blue ribbon and would he give him permission to put it on him. His surprised boss said, "Well, sure." The junior executive took the blue ribbon and placed it right on his boss's jacket above his heart. As he gave him the last extra ribbon, he said, "Would you do me a favor? Would you take this extra ribbon and pass it on by honoring somebody else? The young boy who The gave me the ribbons is doing a project in school and we want to keep this recognition ceremony going and first out how find affects people."

That night the boss came home to his 14-year old son and sat him down. He said, "The most incredible thing happened to me today. I was in my office and one of the junior executives came in and told me he admired me and gave me a blue ribbon for being a creative genius. Imagine. He thinks I'm a creative genius. Then he put this blue ribbon that says “Who I Am Makes A Difference” on my jacket above my heart. He gave me an extra ribbon and asked me to find somebody else to honor. As I was during home tonight, I started thinking about whom I would honor with this ribbon and I thought about you. I want to honor you.

"My days are really hectic and when I come home I don't pay a lot of attention to you. Sometimes I scream at you for not getting good enough grades in school and for your bedroom being a mess, but somehow tonight, I just wanted to sit here and, well, just let you know that you do make a difference to me. Besides your mother, you are the most important person in my life. You're a great kid and I love you!"

The startled boy started to sob and sob, and he couldn't stop crying. His whole body shook. He looked up at his father and said through his tears, "I was planning on committing suicide tomorrow, Dad, because I didn't think you loved me. Now I don't need to."

WHO I AM MAKES A DIFFERENCE, BECAUSE I AM A PERSON WITH A HEART AND FEELINGS AND A NEED TO BE ACCEPTED.

If you have anyone who means a lot to you, I encourage you to send them this message and let them know. You never know what kind of difference a little encouragement can make to a person. Send it to all of the people who mean anything important to you, or send it to the one or two people who mean the most. Or just smile and know that someone thinks that you are important, or you wouldn't be reading this in the first place.

 

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YOUR STORIES OF KINDNESS

Under the Umbrella of Kindness

I was shopping and when I went to leave the store, it was raining so very, very hard that the rain was bouncing back up off the cement. I had an umbrella in my purse and spent the next half hour or so walking people to their cars as they truly would have been drenched otherwise. I ended up soaked to the knees but the people that I helped were so surprised and grateful, I think that maybe in similar circumstances they may do the same.

Actually, I try and carry out one act of kindness every day if the opportunity crosses my path and figure it makes the world a better place. I'm sure you agree.

I enjoyed your website, thanks.

Wendy Alden

A Laundry Story

My husband and I live in an apartment and, like a lot of apartment dwellers, have to use the laundry room provided by the management. The usual way of handling clothing left in a washer or dryer is for the next user to take it out and leave it to one side. However, I decided to fold and dry any laundry I found left in a dryer. After several months of this, I noticed other people doing the same. I am delighted that other people are trying  to make our apartment complex a little nicer place to live.

Note: This contributor chose to remain anonymous, but gave us permission to share her wonderful story. It is a perfect example of the "ripple effect" of kindness, and we appreciate her sharing with us!

Kindness Story

Dear Kindness Inc.,

I was in the drive thru at Starbucks about 7:15 a.m. this morning before going in to work. When I got to the window to get my beverage and pay, the young lady at the window said, "Merry Christmas! The women in the car in front of you paid for your beverage and wanted you to have a Happy Holiday."

What an awesome random act of kindness. It has set the tone and mood for me all day. I can hardly wait to get a chance to do something to pay it back. I have shared this with everyone that will listen.

Have a great Holiday!

Patti Reed 
Sales Manager 
Kern Schools Federal Credit Union 
(661) 833-7933(661) 833-7933 
(661) 396-4479 FAX 
[email protected]

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