I want to do something with the kids this Christmas that encourages them to put others first and focus on the real reason of Christmas. After being inspired by this book, I put together a list of 30 random acts of kindness that I can do with them at Christmas and all year round!
Living in a very small town (and it's not one of those small towns with only one traffic light, it's a small town that's too small to even have a traffic light) makes it kind of tricky to do random acts of kindness. There are some things on the list that we can do here, but for quite a few of them, we'll have to wait until we're out shopping in the "Big City."
I thought it would be a good idea to leave a little note with each random act of kindness so I created this printable sheet of cards to cut up. I plan to print mine on cardstock to make them a little more heavy duty. I'm also going to print extras to keep in my wallet for those times when I come across an opportunity to do a random act of kindness unexpectedly :)
Want to print off your own "Random Acts of Kindness" cards? Here's the link to the free printable!
1. Leave a thank you note and treats in the mailbox for the mail carrier. We have a post office box so we'll just bring the note and treats to the post office to thank the staff there.
2. Bring cookies to the local assisted living or nursing home for the staff.
3. Buy lunch or coffee for the person behind you in line.
4. Have the kids make cards for family and friends. Hand deliver them (the cards, not the kids) if possible.
5. Buy a $5 gift card at a store and hand it to someone coming in on your way out.
6. Leave a bottle of laundry soap or put quarters in the machines at the laundromat.
7. Tape a bag of quarters to a vending machine.
8. Leave a bottle of water and a snack or a magazine in the nursing rooms at the mall. The Babies R' Us in our area also has nursing rooms so we could do this there as well.
9. Leave a ziploc bag with a travel pack of wipes and a few diapers on a public changing table.
10. Give the kids each a few small toys and have them hand them out to other kids while shopping. I've bought a pack of sillybandz bracelets to do this with because both boys and girls love them.
11. Tuck a few dollars around the toy section at the dollar store or into various bins in the dollar section of Target.
12. Drop off a plate of cookies at the nurses' station at the birthing center. I may wait until March to do this one since I'll be at the birthing center then anyways. I'll probably be the first patient to come in with cookies for the nurses. Bribery or a random act of kindness? You decide :)
13. Make "Homeless Blessing Bags" up with the kids and hand them out to the homeless you see while out shopping.
14. Tape a bag of microwave popcorn to a Redbox machine.
15. Have the kids draw a picture for their bus driver and give it to him with a
16. Leave sticky notes on a public bathroom mirror telling people to have a great day.
17. Leave sticky notes on public changing tables that read, "You're a great mom!"
18. Put a dollar bill in a library book when returning it.
19. If you're crafty, make a few hairbows and have your daughter hand them out to little girls when you're out shopping. (There are lots of easy tutorials available for free online! Or, if you're not crafty, you could buy a pack of hairbows and hand those out instead.)
20. On a hot day, hand out bottles of water to people out walking. Obviously, this is something we'd do during the summer :)
21. Tuck a few dollars or a Starbucks gift card into a book at the bookstore.
22. Write "You are beautiful" on a sticky note and leave it on a mirror in a public
23. Leave a generous tip and a candy bar for your server after eating out.
24. Drop off a plate of cookies at the public library, police station, fire station, etc. (Since I work at the public library, does that mean I get to eat some of the cookies?)
25. Give your child's teacher (school or sunday school) a small gift as a thank you for all the work he or she does.
26. Offer to take a shopping cart to the cart corral for someone else at the store.
27. Leave a coloring book and a small box of crayons at the doctor's office.
28. Smile at a frazzled looking mom and tell her that she's doing a great job.
29. Buy a bag of fun-sized candy bars and have the kids hand them out at the mall.
30. If you have a small business like I do (Annalie's Baby Boutique and Little Owl Patterns), give a mom with a little one a gift certificate to your shop. I hesitated to put this one on the list since it seems like it could be self-promotion, but since my motive is only to give (and I would end up giving more than I would receive financially), I decided to add it to the list anyway.