This year was hands down the most beautiful, happy, memorable and easily the most exhausting birthday I've ever had and I hope to never forget it. It went a little something like this:
1. Started the day off with a 26% OFF special at whippycake.com
2. Woke up early (on a Saturday!!!) so I could actually shower, which in and of itself was a random act of kindness towards my bed buddy (showers are a special occasion for me, gross but true). Then I made supreme pancakes with fresh strawberries, whip cream, bacon and eggs. I almost never make breakfast so even though it was second breakfast for everyone in the house I'm hoping they enjoyed it because I made so much they had to eat it for lunch too.
3. I dropped off some cupcakes and a card at my post office for all my guys who have my back and treat me well. They call me "whippy" or "whippy cakes" so that's why they got cupcakes.They probably get sick of seeing me several times every week but I'm not going anywhere.
4. I purchased a book of stamps while at the post office and asked the clerk to give them to a random customer with a card full of my best wishes.
5. I hit up Costco and loaded up on Dr. Pepper, Red Vines, Gum, and fresh chips and salsa and took them to my community fire department with my pocket full of sunshine, Miss Jessi. The plan was to leave them at the front desk or something but I guess they don't have a front desk. Instead we were greeted by a pack of dudes who were bored on a slow day. They were fired up about the GINO load of gum and then I pretty much imploded inside when they offered to give us a grand tour. I'd never been to a fire department orrrr seen a fire truck up close so it was unexpected and beyond super awesome! I learned so much about what they do and how much they sacrifice so I promised myself to devote a super post to them later with all the juice.
6. Delivered flowers to someone brave who I admire.
7. Placed cards with happy wishes and tidings full of sunshine on random cars throughout the day.
8. Delivered crayons, markers colored pencils, notebooks, bubbles, giant toy balls, play dough, jelly bracelets and Glamour Bands to the pediatric unit at Mercy Gilbert Hospital. They have a special closet where the mini patience get to pick out something special after they have a painful procedure done. I learned that they always need donations wink* wink*.
9. Skipped on up to Labor and Delivery on the 3rd floor of Mercy Gilbert and donated 20 more unique Glamour Bands for the newborn babies and the mommies. Stopped and stared at the newborns through the window for 5 minutes. Then realized the boy babies got screwed and I am feeling really guilty about that so I promise to go back with something great for them. (special thanks to Jessi and Carli for helping me whip out so many Glamour Bands on Saturday.)
10. Purchased 2 dozen roses and had the nurses give them away to the particularly lonely patients in the ICU.
11. Dropped off a Thank You card and candy bars to Richard my go to Business Banker who saves my life on a weekly basis.
12. Dropped off bulk bag of dog treats to the Healing Hearts & Animal Sanctuary with a tray of cupcakes for the volunteers.
13. Purchased gift cards to Circle-K and Little Caesars Pizza with a thank you card for the LDS Missionaries.
14. Purchased movie tickets, popcorn and candy for a deserving couple.
15. Dropped off a MONDO apple pie at the Urgent Care that frequently treats my children.
16. Arranged for my sister Aubrey to purchased man food (soda, beef jerky and candy bars) for her husband to take to work at the police station he works for. (I never was a positive influence for healthy nutrition).
17. Made a silly video for my twin brother to show him how much I miss not spending our birthday together like we should. Brad on a Stick is the next best thing I suppose.
18. Took my kids to the seminary building by my house and had them pass out candy bars to a class of teenagers. I also passed out blank cards to them and requested they do a random act of kindness for someone who could use a happy moment. Brother Goodman was the happiest teacher I've ever met and I wanted to sit right down and join his class.
19. Took a box of ice cold bottles of Gatorade to a group of construction workers by my house.
21. Purchased a $10 Circle-K and asked the clerk to give it to a future customer.
22. Bought Panda Express for the person behind me in the drive through line.
23. Saw two police cars at Chick Fil A so I pulled over and purchased two gift cards and had the clerk hand them to the two gentlemen after I left. (got a soft spot for the officers because I'm a bug fan of my Bro. In Law who is on the force as well, they totally don't make as much as they should!)
24. Learned how to send care packages to our military troops through AnySoldier.com. Mine includes new poker cards, card games and poker chips as well as hygiene products and of course letters of appreciation. The site runs by 110% volunteer work and makes it easy to find troops by where they are located, what they need and how recently they have received care packages. You get to read letters from them as well. I am super excited I found the site and can't wait to become a regular sponsor.
25. Put together a Whippy Cake package for my pediatrician because she is as cute and sweet as they come and she gives my kids the best care I could ask for.
26. This one is a top secret and sensitive endeavor that will be revealed at a later date but I promise it will be rewarding to all of us and worth the wait.
So that's it, kind of wish I was older because that doesn't seem like very much but here are some things I learned:
- The weekends make it harder to serve the public, like teachers, construction workers etc.
- Call ahead if and when possible.
- The bigger your posse of do gooders the more you can get done.
- don't leave chocolate in your car in AZ for more than a minute.
- Explaining why you would like the clerk to give x, y or z to the next random customer always sounds awkward and a little crazy no matter how many times you try it or how you word it.
- Anonymous giving is my FAVORITE!
- A day of RAOK will induce a coma on anyone.
- I am not and should never be a film maker. Ever.
- All the businesses around us and their employees do not get the appreciation they deserve.
- Krispy Kreme closes at 9:55pm not 10pm like they tell you on the phone and no amount of begging or pouting through the window will get them to open up.
- It's ok to have a bad hair day on your birthday.
- Family, friends and neighbors are awesome, especially awesome to serve and celebrate with!
- Most importantly, and I really mean this, the act of kindness doesn't and shouldn't need to be a special occasion. I couldn't believe the feelings I felt from just ONE day of service and I am embarrassed I don't take advantage of opportunities more frequently. I could be even more happy than I already am so why wouldn't I?!?!
-I was also painfully aware of how often others' kind deeds towards me go unnoticed and that I also fail to really share and express my appreciation to those who help and serve me. It definitely didn't feel good during the instances where my deeds were pushed aside or went unnoticed so I want to be vividly aware of others needs and deeds around me from now on.
- I missed my twin :(