June 20, 2014

My Experience with 'Pay it Forward' and Mother's Day

Our family has had a lot of company lately because one of my kids graduated from High School, then we went on a family reunion.  After that, my parents wanted to visit some nearby sites, so we did some travelling, then after they left, I was behind on bills and stuff.  So I was happy to have some time to write today.

One of the things I wanted to share was something that happened around Mother’s day.  My daughter Stephanie called me and told me that she had made a card for me and somehow she lost it.  She had used scrapbooking supplies and made this lovely Mother’s Day card, had her brothers sign it too.  But when she went to mail it, it was gone.  She felt bad and hoped that somehow it would make it to me.  But she assumed it wouldn’t, and wanted to tell me about it anyway, since she had worked so hard.  And she knew that now I wouldn’t receive it, so calling me was the next best thing.  I appreciated hearing about the card and I still had a nice Mother’s day.

Well, imagine my surprise when a week later, the card showed up in my mail box!  And there was a note on the back that read, “Dear Melanie, I found this letter on BYU campus.  Looked important so I decided to mail it out.  I got to mailing it rather late.  Sorry for the delay!  Otherwise you would have gotten it on Mother’s Day!  Pay it forward!  Happy Mother’s Day!  Cheers, K.E.”

K. E. must have known it was a mother’s day card because the return address read, “Your favorite children,” and it was the size of a card.  And it must have helped that it was right before Mother’s day.  

Such a small thing—mailing a dropped Mother’s day card—made me really happy.  Who knows if the 50 cents K. E. spent to mail it could have gone to more important things like food.  Students are generally poor!  But he/she did it anyway.  And I must add that it was a lovely card with kind things written inside, a real gift to me, definitely worth mailing.

It’s a good reminder that we can make others happy with little things.  And that doing those little things makes us happy too.  It’s like a ray of sunshine, bringing joy to everyone-- the giver, the recipient, and even onlookers.  And I’m sharing this little ray of sunshine with you.  And I’m on the lookout for other ways to ‘pay it forward.’

I also wanted to tell you that we found two more bird nests!  In my backyard, we have a deck that overlooks the yard.  Under the deck, right up against the house we found a nest full of chirping baby birds.  And at my daughter’s house, she has ceiling fans on her back porch.  Birds built a nest on the top of the center of one of the fans, housing several baby birds.  What an amazing year for birds!  It’s another little gift from Heavenly Father to make us happy.  

I know that every day we can find little acts of kindness to bring us joy, whether we give, recieve or just witness them.  Even bad days can become better when we are full of gratitude.  And even if we don't see any acts of kindness, this beautiful world gives us plenty of lovely gifts to appreciate.