Tuesday, July 06, 2010

guest post - Tara - tips and a giveaway

I'd like to introduce you to my friend Tara.
Tara is the mother of four beautiful children,
and the woman behind the scenes of Trendy Treehouse!
I've enjoyed getting to know Tara and I know
that you will benefit from "meeting" her too!
And she's got a great giveaway at the end
so make sure to read all the way to the bottom!

Random Acts of Kindness & a couple Tips too!

When Jamie asked me to participate in her RAK week, I knew just what I would write about. My husband and I had made a huge decision to make a move. We lived in a larger community. Lovely and nice but we just felt crowded. I had always grown up in town but loved visiting my grandparents in the country every summer. My hubby grew up in the country the majority of his childhood. So we both knew what we wanted. Acreage someday. A place for our kids to run. A small country school. A simple life for us and a simple life for our kids. We made the move towards my parents childhood home. We knew this was what we were looking for. Found 10 acres with a brand new home. Perfect in every way. The schools are wonderful and the kids loved their new play land. LOL Not that living in town wasn't great. I know many people love it. But for us, this was our little piece of heaven. God's country!

Here is where RAK comes in. Growing up I never paid any attention to the kindness of strangers in my new hometown as I visited my grandparents. I just thought grandmas friends were nice. Well, turns out we moved to a community of just wonderful, kind people. People wave to us everyday. Ask us how we are doing, if they can help with anything, ect. We were used to people being private and minding their own business, so you can imagine how strange this was for us. We began to embrace this now and wave away to everyone we see on the road. Life here is slower paced too! There is little to no road rage. Hardly any traffic and honestly, I have even been pulled over for speeding to only be told to be mindful next time to slow down please and obey the speed limits. (long story, potty training daughter at the time. You know when they gotta go, they gotta go!) No ticket! Wow! We even casually chatted a bit. I told all my friends! Silly, I know. But I thought it was great.

On to another day (still new to moving here)... I was headed into town to get some groceries. I had wanted to drive into town (about 15 miles) to go to a specific store. Well, I am terrible about checking my gas levels and went on my way. Next thing I know my gas light is on and I am nervous. There is no gas station until I get into town. I have run out of gas before and it is not pretty. So I stopped in a small town along the way at this shop where there are nothing but men. I thought for sure they would laugh at the silly woman who ran out of gas and I would have to call AAA. NOPE! Once I walked in and asked if there was a gas station close by because I was low on gas and wasn't sure if I would make it into the larger town, one man stood up. He said, "Sorry there isn't one close by, but I do have a tank in the back of my truck with 5 gallons. That should get you there." Really! I did not expect this. We headed outside and as he poured the gas I was trying to figure out the price per gallon. I said, "I am sorry, but I don't have any cash on me, can I drop back by here on my way back with the cash for the gas. I really appreciate you helping me." He stopped me and said, "NO. Please just take the gas as a gift from me and help someone when they come to ask you for something they need." I was in shock and wasn't sure what to say. I thanked him over and over and told him I would help. What a great gift. Thank you!

Not too long after that my husband and I took the kids to dinner. We are very old fashioned parents in the way that we actually make our children sit still, mind their manners and respect adults. With four kids so close in age, we often get stares when we arrive places and people are always amazed at how well behaved they are. They are always walking up and telling us that we are great parents and have lovely children. I love hearing that. What mom wouldn't. Well this night in particular we noticed a couple watching us walk in. They had 3 kids of their own, but older. Very well mannered as well. We took our seats and not 10 minutes later this man walks over to us and says, "Anyone who can raise such a beautiful family deserves a nice night out. You have a lovely family!" Then he slides a gift card onto our table. We were shocked and said, "Thank you so much." And before we could say more he said have a wonderful night and just walked out with his family. Would you ever believe this to happen? Not us. The waitress was smiling, we were smiling, it was just a nice feeling. When we paid for dinner with our gift and were amazed at the amount. He had given us $75 for dinner. To complete strangers. What a generous gift. With tip and all we only used $51. So we decided to share our gift with another couple at the restaurant. They were shocked too!

With just these few (there are many more we have encountered here) examples of Random Acts of Kindness, we were changed. We are now the people that wave all the time and help those in need. We give to the needy as they sit on the side of the road asking for a bite to eat. We offer help to our neighbors. We donate our time. We listen when someone needs help or a place to come to just talk. And by doing all this, I am so Proud because we are giving our kids the gift of giving, sharing and loving. The gift of knowing that just one random act of kindness can quickly turn into so many more kind moments. We need to remember everyday the gifts God has given us and use them to teach others that there is true kindness in this world. You just have to accept it and share it!

Tips that are nice to hear and share...

When you see someone struggling, tired or just in need of someone to talk to, you know you have been there yourself, just walk over and ask them what you can help them with. Loading the groceries, sharing a nice comment, asking them a question to take their mind away from their troubles, ect. Just be that someone they need to get them through that rough moment. Sometimes the simplest things will make someone smile and remember their worries aren't so bad after all. They will thank you for it.

Share with a tired parent about similar events and let them know you understand. It is always frustrating to have someone comment and make you feel like your being a bad parent for being upset, tired or just frustrated when your child is throwing a tantrum in a store. Instead, lighten it up, go over and say, "Wow, what a beautiful day huh? You know when my kids do this? I always...." Share an event. Then they won't feel so bad for having their kids acting out. They will know they aren't alone. I have actually met a couple friend this way. Just ended up chatting in the store sharing stories of motherhood. Fun! And the kids always end up curious and stop to see what's going on and what's mommy doing. It really does work.

If you see a nice family, nice act or polite gesture, go over and tell them how wonderful that was. We have been approached by people telling us that it was a joy sitting next to such a wonderful family. It made our day! Everyone loves to hear a kind thought.

My favorite.... If you see someone without a smile, share one of yours! Dolly Parton

I love this saying. Everyone could use an extra smile.

Thank you so much Jamie for allowing me to share just a few RAK moments in our lives. I hope one person can relate and enjoy something I shared here today.

Tara from Trendy Treehouse

Now for the giveaway!!!
Tara is generously giving away a $25 gift card to Target.
Now, who couldn't use a gift card to Target?

To enter this giveaway which ends on July 13th....
Leave a comment telling me why you want to win this and
what you would buy with it.

Extra entries:
1)Follow Pure Joy (1 entry) through google friend connect.
2) FollowTrendy Treehouse (1 entry) through google friend connect.
2)Go to Trendy Treehouse and leave a comment, THEN
come back here and tell me where you left a comment. (1 entry)
3) Blog about this giveaway and leave me a link to your post (1 entry)
4) Put the Random Acts of Kindness Button on your blog
and let me know where it is (2 entry)

Please leave a SEPARATE comment for each entry.
Please leave your email address so I can contact you if you win!

Spread kindness everyday!

30 comments:

scrappin_mom said...

What a beautiful story! I, of course, would love to win a Target gift card. But here's why I'd like to win it from Tara. Our family has done exactly the same thing, moved from the big, materialistic Southern California to the small, homey, friendly South West Missouri to raise our 2 kids. I feel a kindred spirit.

Thanks for the inspiration to be kind!

linda.joy.stark@gmail.com

scrappin_mom said...

I am folling you through Google connect

April V said...

I would love to have this b/c not only do I absolutely ADORE Target, but I really need some sheets for my bed, and haven't really had the money to get any at the moment. This would come at just the right time! :)

april_vereb@yahoo.com

April V said...

I follow via GFC!

april_vereb@yahoo.com

April V said...

I follow TT via GFC!

april_vereb@yahoo.com

April V said...

I left a comment at TT on the Hot Fudge Pudding Cake post here: http://thetrendytreehouse.blogspot.com/2010/07/hot-fudge-pudding-cake.html

april_vereb@yahoo.com

Mami2jcn said...

I'd like to win this because I love Target (it's my favorite store) and I would buy clothing for my baby girl if I won the gift card.

mami2jcn at gmail dot com

Mami2jcn said...

I follow Pure Joy on GFC.

Mami2jcn said...

I follow Trendy Treehouse on GFC.

SmartShopaholic said...

Who wouldn't like to win a card to Target...right :) I would probably buy water, milk and paper products...or maybe I would go all out and buy a new shirt. :) Thanks!

smartshopaholic at gmail dot com

SmartShopaholic said...

I am following you through GFC.

SmartShopaholic said...

I already follow Trendy Treehouse on GFC.

allthingsnew said...

I want to win this because I LOVE shopping at Target, and I would use it for all of the "deals" at Target that we don't really NEED but really help out in the long run...

stephanierosenhahn at yahoo dot com

allthingsnew said...

I follow Pure Joy through GFC! stephanierosenhahn

stephanierosenhahn at yahoo dot com

allthingsnew said...

I follow Trendy Treehouse through GFC!

stephanierosenhahn

stephanierosenhahn at yahoo dot com

allthingsnew said...

I left a comment at Trendy Treehouse on the Shutter Love Top Ten photos! Those were GREAT photos!

stephanierosenhahn at yahoo dot com

allthingsnew said...

The RAK button is on my blog! It's on the right sidebar with the other buttons in my blogroll! #1

http://sweetsavingsincolorado.blogspot.com

stephanierosenhahn at yahoo dot com

allthingsnew said...

The RAK button is on my blog! It's on the right sidebar with the other buttons in my blogroll! #2

http://sweetsavingsincolorado.blogspot.com

stephanierosenhahn at yahoo dot com

Missy said...

What a fabulous story!

Uh....why would I NOT want to win a GC to Target? LOL
I am in need of some summer clothing for myself.

Holly said...

We shop at Target A LOT. Usually we get Kiley's diapers there and wipes too, so most likely we'd buy diapers or some other baby stuff with the gift card. Not too fun, but very necessary!

Holly said...

I am a follower

Brianna! said...

Following on Google Connect!

Brianna! said...

Im a TrendyTreehouse follower....Religiously:)

Brianna! said...

Left a comment on Trendy Treehouse Creative share post [July 7th]
Creative Share Wednesday is one of my FAVORITE things to participate in during the week:)

Brianna! said...

putting the RANDOM ACTS of KINDESS on my blog!
YAY
I LOVE this SOOOO much
Heart-warming

loveLOVE
bB
www.itsybitsybrianna.blogspot.com

scrappin_mom said...

I commented on TT and wrote:
GOD BLESS AMERICA, LAND THAT I LOVE!




I can't figure out how to follow her.

Kim said...

I'd love this gift card to help with buying diapers for my 2 kids uner 2!

Deanna G. said...

I want it because I love Target & I'd buy some shorts! :)


(email in profile)

Deanna G. said...

I follow Pure Joy on GFC via Twitter.

Deanna G. said...

I follow Trendy Treehouse on GFC via Twitter.