Monday, October 5, 2015

random acts of kindness

Can I get a hands up for who's happy that its October?
{Insert high five emoji here}
 Fall has finally arrived here in Houston.
It's sixty three degrees and I'm in love.
Its time to bring out the fall décor don't you think?
One little problem...I'm in the midst of painters and contractors.
Yes. Still.
Its all good though.
Progress is happening and that's better than standing still.
My faux pumpkin and gourd stash will have to wait a while.
In the meantime let me share a sweet story...
If you know me in real time you know that we've grown really close to our neighbors.
We, my husband and our boys, feel like our families
have become like family.
They are the number one reason we put off building a new home.
We didn't want to leave them.
During the summer we began "Sundaes on Sunday"
where every Sunday night we'd start the new week off by
making the craziest sugar concoctions
with any and every sugary condiment and ice cream known to mankind.
Then there's inside golf where they've created basically an indoor putt-putt game
with coffee cups as the golf ball holes and furniture as the obstacles.
My boys are crazy for them to say the least.
His sons may think of us as the crazy cousins who they can't shake at a reunion
but I digress...Ha!
We've watched their boys grow up,
they were littles when we moved on the street
and now they're all towering glorious young men.
Our neighbor's wife was very special to me.
I looked up to her in many ways but most of all as a mother.
She was only three years older than me but she had this old soul personality
in that I felt like she had the answers to so many questions I had,
even ones I was too afraid to ask her.
She would bring over copies of parenting articles she thought I'd like
and invite me to talks about religion and parenting.
She gave me much more than I ever gave back.
She passed away this spring,
a few weeks after we lost our niece.
My husband and I have often said
that these two ladies that died within weeks of each other
reminded each of us of the other woman,
they were very similar in a lot of ways but mainly in their faith.
We take comfort in thinking they met at heaven's gate.
I personally think they're still around in ways.
Little things remind me of them all the time...
like white pumpkins for instance.
Let me explain...
I think I've said it here before that our friend next door
was like Martha Stewart and Julia Childs rolled into one.
Her home was always immaculate and her kitchen always cooking something delicious.
Every fall she put out the most wonderful pumpkin display on her porch.
Something like this...
She loved all things white
so she would buy white Cinderella pumpkins
and arrange them just so,
in piles of pumpkin perfection.
Last week I noticed some white pumpkins on the porch next door.
I figured our neighbor's dad who was visiting from out of town
had grab some at the grocery store.
One afternoon late last week our neighbor drove up
as we were getting home from piano.
We chit chatted and I complimented him on the pumpkins.
I told him that his dad had done a good job.
He looked at them and smiled and said it wasn't his dad.
"do you know you did that?"
No idea if it wasn't him I said.
"A lady down the street brought us those.
She said she'd been driving past our house for twenty years
and she knew that every fall {his wife}
put out white pumpkins on the porch.
She said she knew that {his wife} had passed away in the spring.
She said she couldn't drive by this year
and not see pumpkins on the porch.
So she brought him a pile of white pumpkins for his porch.
Wasn't that so nice of her? he said.
Yes it was I told him trying to stop my eyes from tearing.
I keep thinking of this story.
I wish I knew which neighbor it was.
I'd go down the street and hug her neck.
I just love that she had the thought and followed through on it.
I know my neighbor appreciated it immensely.
I love the idea of random acts of kindness
because it's so true that...
I'm inspired now and I hope you are too.
If you are, I found this little list of suggestions...
Who's with me?
ps...I just saw this story today and cried my eyes out.


  1. Nancy, what a beautiful story! Brought tears to my eyes. In a world where we hear about so many awful things taking place, it is nice to know their are still good people out there that genuinely care. I am in!

    1. you're so sweet as always :) there are so many good people out there...I think we just need to slow down and express it to other people. today I helped an older lady find the grapes at the grocery store...I left my cart and walked her back across the store. she kept saying "oh you don't have to do this." and I was like "i know I don't have to but I WANT to." just something that little you know just pays forward goodness into the universe I least I hope so :) have a great weekend! hoping to try one of your recipes on sunday :)

  2. Wow. What a wonderful story! I love random acts of kindness and used to be better about doing them myself. It's so easy to get caught up in the rat race with the kids, but this has inspired me to slow down a little and "pass it on" more often. xo

    1. Hi Christine! so happy you're back in blogland! I've missed you! hope y'all have a gorgeous weekend!


  3. You made me cry. That's such a sweet story, and when I feel down about how crappy people can be, I think of things like this or how kind people I barely knew were to me and my family when my dad passed away last winter. All is not lost for humanity.

    1. no, thankfully its not although at time I do wonder about how our society seems to be going to hell in a hand basket :( then I meet people like you in this small world of ours and I know good people exist :) cant wait to see the progress on your home :)

  4. Oh my gosh, I love this pumpkin story! I have a dear friend who died and just saw her husband for the first time since the funeral this past Sunday at church. I miss her so much and can't imagine what he's feeling. I don't know if she put pumpkins on her porch, but I'll bet a dollar she did. Maybe I'll take him one!
    Great story! Thanks.

    1. I thought of your friend that passed recently when I was writing this :) I know she's looking down on you smiling at the thought of you taking a pumpkin to her husband :)

  5. Oh Nancy, I want to hug your neighbor too!! Thanks for the kindness reminder...not much effort to achieve something big.

    1. hey Mary Ann! believe you me i'm gonna find out which neighbor it is and go find her and try to pay some kindness forward to her :) have a beautiful weekend! give Chief a squeeze for me.

  6. Beautiful story!
    Our bodies may die but our energy lives on in wonderful ways through the lives we touch!!!

    1. Hi Terry! I hope you're doing well :) I believe that too, I really do.


  7. Nancy, this is the most heartwarming and poignant story.
    That we would all spread a bit of kindness every day!!

    The Arts by Karena
    Artist Lee Bowers

    1. Thanks so much for reading and for your sweet comment. hope you have a terrific Friday and weekend!

  8. OMG there really is hope for the human race isn't there? I wonder sometimes when everyone bases their lives and who they plan to run the country via reality tv. We had/have neighbors just like that. He passed away early this year. They are one in a million. Thanks for sharing this!

  9. OMG there really is hope for the human race isn't there? I wonder sometimes when everyone bases their lives and who they plan to run the country via reality tv. We had/have neighbors just like that. He passed away early this year. They are one in a million. Thanks for sharing this!

  10. I have a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes....thank you!

  11. OMG...what a sweet lady...when you find out who she is give her a big hug from all of us!

  12. Yes, tears over such a kindness. Not actually random but very carefully intentional which is what made it so tender. I thin I am in love wiht white pumpkins now! Thanks you for haring this. Linda

  13. Oh gosh.....that choked me up so hard. What a sweet story.....but so sad to hear of her passing. Sometimes life is just not fair.

  14. That was such a good story!! Thank you for sharing. How blessed you are to have this family and to have had that lovely woman in your life.


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