Christmas is my favourite time of year. I love giving gifts and seeing the looks of people’s faces. I don’t care much about whether or not they give me a gift back. The pure happiness of giving in this season is what I chase. To add to my happy faces all around me theory, I have decided to do Random Acts of Kindnesses this year. I wanted to share it with you guys because I am so excited. In my case, sometimes they are not all random, but the heart is still there! Also I had to start way before December because I didn’t have enough time to do all of this. Here is my list.
1.Volunteering at the annual CIBC Celebration of hope
This is the first time I have ever volunteered for this event. It is very well planned and all the money goes to the Markham Stouffville Hospital. (I volunteer with them a lot). What’s even better is that I got to meet these three amazing people. My favourite morning radio hosts Erin and Mike. The third person is Mike’s wife, Debbie, who is fighting cancer. All our prayers and thoughts to her.
2. Volunteering for race kit pick up for the 10km and the half marathon.
I really didn’t have time to take any pictures but I met an amazing group of people. This was also my first time volunteering for this event. Volunteers are all so energetic and nice. Hope to see them next year again.
3. Plant a Tree
I signed up with an online community called Evergreen. They are an organization that brings people together to plant trees.
4.Volunteering for the Santa Claus Parade
For the first time, I decided to volunteer for the Santa Claus parade in downtown Toronto. There were so many kids that were so excited to see Santa. I miss those days of innocence. I was a “kid” in PJs that had penguins on it. I also held a cupcake for some reason. It was really fun and I wouldn’t mind doing it again next year.
5. Buying Toronto Fire Department Calendars
Donated money to the Princess Margaret Hospital by buying some firemen calendars for my girlfriends. Honestly, I can’t really say that this was for kindness, some of it was for myself ( to enjoy. But glad to know that the money was going to someone who needs it. After taking a peek, I sent these off to my friends 🙂
6. Donations for Clothing drive
I do this all year round but in this case, I have offered to bring all my friends and family’s donation bags to the nearest Goodwill. I always thought that donated things were given to people that need them for free, but turns out they pay for them and the money goes back into helping them.
7. Sending Christmas cards to soldiers abroad.
I had no idea you could do this until some research. You can search online for the address of the soldier bases around the world and send them mail. You can even send them a care package. I ended up sending them a bag of Tim Horton’s coffee grinds. Who knows whether or not they have good tasting coffee where they are.
8. Samaratian’s Purse Children’s gift boxes
Every year I fill a box for a boy and a box for a girl. This year I chose the oldest age 10-14 and filled it with essentials and toys. I always write something heart warming in their Christmas card to give them courage to push their way out poverty. A girl can always hope.
9. Headband for a single dad’s daughter
When I heard that my coworker was a single dad who had a 15 year old daughter, I immediately felt like I wanted to do something for them for Christmas. Since I love knitting, I decided to knit her a head warmer which is pretty quick and she will love (I hope).
10. Sponsoring a child with Plan Canada
I have wanted to do this for a very long time. I decided to go with Plan Canada because of the “I am a girl” campaign. Many girls in third world countries are pushed into sex and slave trades. We need to stop the mentality that girls/women are objects for a man’s sexual needs. Not saying that this doesn’t happen to boys in the same situation but there are more for girls.
11. Cookies for the Firemen.
Speaking of firemen, to thank them, I baked some cookies and brought it to the station. They let me tour the station and come down the pole too. I was holding on for dear life. Sorry, wasn’t fast enough – the picture is the aftermath.
12.A pick me up for my friend’s mother.
One of the coolest moms I have ever known is going through a rough patch in her life. I decided to bake her a banana bread and nice card (hopefully not making her cry touched happy tears this time) in order to make her smile.
13. Toys for Toy Mountain
Every year I donate a toy to Toy Mountain. Every child deserves a good childhood and some sort of toy. My best friend asked me why I chose such a “girly” toy… well, I had no idea what to buy because kids nowadays have very different taste. Geez.
14. Paying for someone’s coffee
I was in the Tim Horton’s line and I paid for the person behind me. I don’t know how they reacted because I didn’t see it, but it definitely felt good.
15. A cupcake for the mailman
We don’t really have a mailbox in front of our house, but I’d like to think that the mailman who deserves (that gives us our mail) these cookies will get them. Hope it puts a smile on their face.
16. Change for the vending machine
This is a very common one. I always want to get something at the vending machine at work but most of the time I don’t have enough money. Too bad I couldn’t take my own money and use it.
17. Sorting for a toy drive
I worked with the Markham Firefighters for this season for their toy drive. We sorted the toys by age. It was really fun seeing all the different toys that were out there and which ones I used to play with… uhh twenty years ago lol. (I forgot to take a picture of this)
18. Brownies for my coworkers
Actually this isn’t something I never do. I always bring in baked foods for Christmas for my coworkers.
19. Casserole for the homeless
I got an aluminum “box” and filled it with a mandatory casserole recipe that was provided from the church down the street. This casserole was frozen and then brought to homeless people after thawed in downtown Toronto.
20. Nice things on post-its for people
Just to say hi to a person and put a smile on their face when they don’t expect it. This almost costs nothing and is really fun to do. Just don’t make people think you’re stealing their car. Since it was crazy windy, most of the post its almost flew away so we clipped it under their windshield wipers. I forgot to take a picture of this.
21. Flowers pressed into books
I love bookstores. I went into a Chapters and put a few petals in random books in the store. I’d be happy to find a pretty flower in a book. Yeah, I forgot to take a picture of this too.
22. Baking party with my single mother’s girls
I met my friend at my last job and I had found out she was a single mother. I wanted to do something for her and her children because it had sounded like it had been a rough few years. I brought cupcake mix and my cupcake making skills and showed them how to really do it.
23. Gift wrapping to raise money for the hospital
Again with the hospital that I always volunteer for, I wrap presents for people in the mall. The money goes all to the hospital. Again, this might not be for just kindness but the love of wrapping presents. My mother had just told me that I have to buy some presents for my nieces and nephews in her place as she is going to be on vacation. I was so happy to think that I can actually wrap these presents for her. I didn’t manage to take a picture of this because I was so busy and forgot after we had to shut down the booth.
24. Befriending a person at a local bar and buying them a drink
I didn’t plan this one but it just happened. I was at the bar with my friends when I went up to the bar and asked for a drink a man started talking to me. He was a very nice and seemingly had no ulterior motives, so I bought him a drink. I would think it to be creepy to ask for an old man to pose for a picture with me so i didn’t ask.
25. Knitting something for all the adults of the family
This one was very hard to do since I had a lot of time restraint on myself – I started too late to knit. However, I got it done. They seem to really enjoy it – but I didn’t see any of them wearing it yet.
As you can see, Christmas is a really busy time for me. I am happy to do all the things above and some more. I always make gifts for my friends (knitting, hand scrubs) and make lots of cookies for my neighbours and my coworkers. All this makes me so happy and I hope that you would do that same to make yourself feel happy as well.
Belated Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!