an idea

 My children are all at the age where they require multiple outfits a day.  Rylie is 5 and must change (everything) when a drop of water falls on her.  Or, if she feels like it.  Gideon is 2 and I’ll spare you the details. June Bug, at 4 months, regularly needs a change of outfit due to bodily malfunctions or siblings’ attempts to feed her.  Or color her.

We go through a lot of clothes.  For a girl who’s terrible at keeping up with laundry, well, this does not bode well.  [puts heads down on desk and cries a little]


I’m always on the lookout for garage sales.  And, as everyone knows, the universal sign for Garage Sale is neon pink poster board stapled to a telephone pole.  I spotted one from afar last week on my way home from errands.  We had half an hour before Ry was due for pickup from school, so I thought perhaps the rest of us would do a little browsing.

Imagine my annoyance when I slowed down and read this:


No garage sale, I guess. 

The next day, I noticed another sign about 100 yards past the first one.

And you know what?

They keep going.  For about 5 miles, there are these neon pink signs stapled up to telephone poles on Belding Road.  They talk about her smile and how she is kind and how he thinks she’s the greatest.

That man?  That man is fantastic.  He took $5 and 15 minutes and changed my whole day… and they’re not even my signs!  But I pass them, and I smile.  I think, “What a small gesture with such a huge impact!”  I think, “I hope I’m not the only one who kinda tears up when she passes these.”  I think, “Why the exclamation point after ‘love’?  I wish I could fix that for him.” 

We need more of this kind of greatness.

Earlier this year, I played along with Molly as she mailed out a boomboom raok card to a bunch of readers and we all emailed back with our stories.  I thought maybe we could do our own grass roots version here at TexasNorth.

Maybe you and your family could help me come up with a bajillion activity ideas and I’ll make up a bajillion activity assignment cards and mail them out to a bajillion people and we’ll all play together but separately and our kids will think it’s awesome and our husbands will play with us and our neighbors will think we’re crazy and we’ll make some memories and everyone wins!

The Kindness Project?  You’ll help me?  We’ll all put some KPs on our fridge this summer and go out like ninjas of fun and goodness?  Maybe, through a bunch of small ideas, we could help each other be creative and kind and happy.

I would so love that.  


Let’s play.

Small and big activity ideas: GO.

About texasnorth

TexasNorth is a little farm in Western Michigan. It's home to 5 chickens, 25 longhorn cattle, a coonhound (Banjo), 1 barn cat, a husband, and 3 ridiculously funny children. The mom of this zoo has been known to mow the lawn in a skirt and roast marshmallows after dark. View all posts by texasnorth

10 responses to “an idea

  • Amy B.

    I don’t deal with toll roads regularly down in the sticks of southern Maryland (where there’s “not a road…with a speed limit over 55,” as one state trooper informed me), but I like the idea I’ve heard of paying the toll for the person behind you in line.

  • Chris

    I was going to say the same thing as Amy, except for in the coffeeshop line instead… just paying an extra 4 dollars or so to cover the person behind you!

  • elly

    2 girlfriends and I are doing a little experment this month. I think you could improvise and still be a ninja! all month long we are keeping track of the “extras” we spend our money on (like the $3.86 drink I just bought at Starbucks or for my more “wealthy” friend… the $85 she dishes out to her cleaning lady TWICE a month). For every “extra” we plan to match it dollar for dollar and pool it all at the end of the month. Then we will each come with a worthy cause (or individual/family) and decide together who to give our “excess” to. Should be fun! I’ll let you know how it goes… elly

  • texasnorth

    Elly, I LOVE that! It’s fabulous! Please send that cleaning lady to my house, kay? Thanks.

    A couple other ideas in my brain while driving today:
    sidewalk chalking your neighbor’s driveway with encouragement.

    paying for an extra popcorn at the movies

    writing a postcard note for your mailman or garbage man and taping it to the mailbox/garbage can

    making a sign for the back window of your car: You are FABULOUS.

    make a super great lunch and send it to school for the teacher

  • lia

    I have figured out almost everyone’s Starbucks drink in the office and so every so often before I go to work I will pick up a coffee for one other person.

    I tuck a card into Russell’s travel bag so he can randomly find it and think of me when he goes on business trips .

    I show up at friends houses and help them with their wild cows.

  • Jen

    These are FABULOUS!! I can especially identify with your comments, Katie. I work for a trash company, owned by a lovely christian couple, here outside of Baltimore. I cannot tell you the impact a kind note, a cold glass of water, or even a kind word would make on our drivers and/or throwers. They hear ALL the complaints (you would NOT believe how upset people get about their TRASH!) but kindness and gratefulness are rare.

    Secondly, my husband is a hard working, hardly paid christian school teacher-and he wouldn’t have it any other way! Once again, he hears ALL the complaints but kindness and gratefulness are rare. Thank a teacher this week! One of yours or one of your children’s!

    I will occasionally mail my husband a sweet card to the school. This gives him “fun” mail and hopefully, brings a smile to his face as he trains the leaders of future generations otherwise known as sweaty and moody fifth graders, whom he LOVES with all his heart!

    Finally, I have been in the Chick Fil A drive through where we paid for the order behind us. The sweet worker told me that their record was 11 cars in a row whose drivers paid for the people following them. So cool!! But what the heck was up with number 12?? HAHA

    LOVE these ideas! Keep ’em coming!

  • Rebekah

    Great idea!
    How about…
    visiting local Fire Department with goodies to eat and thank you cards.
    donating dog biscuits/cat treats to local humane society
    notes of encouragement to pastor, church secretary, teachers, principal, school secretaries…

  • Bev

    If you know of a family in your church or neighborhood who are struggling to make ends meet or maybe just lost their job, etc., buy a meijer gift card and include it with a note of encouragement (BUT ANONYMOUSLY written) and send it to them.

  • Margie

    Love, love, love this. I have nothing to offer. But, I’m learning. (And, Amy B., I plan to do more for Bruce during the upcoming summer heat meltdown.)

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