Archive for the ‘AMOK’ Category
If you are looking to sprinkle kindness like confetti, this weekend was made for you! The Annual Melee of Kindness (#AMOK2016), hosted by Random Acts, is a bit like a flash mob of kindness with people all across the world doing nice things for others and sharing their stories on Facebook and Twitter. It’s so inspiring to read all the awesome things strangers are doing for one another!
My #AMOK was inspired by my daughter’s recent choral competition. Their theme focused on Disney princesses with each section representing a different princess, who showcased their “strengths” through choreographed dances and acapella ballads. There was one girl in the middle, who wore a black dress, an outcast of sorts who didn’t fit in to any of the traditional princess roles. As the story is showcased, each princess group tries to convince the girl to be like them, rotating around her and emphasizing their strengths. The girl finally comes to the realization that she can be her own princess, taking pride in the strengths that make her unique. The show ends with all the princesses shining the spotlight on her and her black dress is transformed to one of gold.
I know I’m biased in saying this, but it’s a spectacular show!
My daughter showed me the shirt they wore at their competition and I immediately thought of Renee Parr, a 1st grade teacher at my school who died suddenly in the summer of 2014. She loved princesses and always wore a tiara at any opportunity to shine. Even at her funeral, her mom wore a tiara and spoke of Renee’s living legacy as a princess in her heart.
My daughter’s shirt also reminded me of my college sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha, whose colors are turquoise and silver. One of ZTA’s key symbols is a five pointed crown and their motto is “Seek the Noblest.” How ironic that my daughter’s show choir would have symbols of the sisterhood I held so dear!
I knew right then that my #AMOK2016 had to have a princess theme.
I decided to spread kindness at a playground and stopped by The Dollar Tree to pick up a few things to give away. As if I needed any more confirmation about the princess theme choice, this is what I saw in the window:
I couldn’t believe my eyes – an entire row of princesses stared back at me, just waiting to be bought and given away.
I scooped up some from the window, then added a few tiaras and sparkly butterfly wings. I even picked up a few butterfly catchers for any princes who might be playing at the playground, too.
Before walking out of the store with my purchases, I left a few surprises to be discovered: money in the gumball machines and a few hidden dollars in the toy section.
My next stop was a local playground, but before I could even get there another playground caught my eye. It was old and faded, tucked in a bed of sticks and pine needles. I felt drawn to that location, so I made a quick stop and left a princess crown and butterfly catcher there.
Then, on a whim, I opened my wallet and took all the change I had and tossed it in the air, watching it scatter among the pine cones. Do you remember the thrill of finding money on the ground when you were young?
I got back in my car and traveled to my final destination and left my treasures all around the playground equipment. There were a few children running about and it gave me such a smile to know they might get to enjoy the surprises I had brought.
I even placed a tiara on a frog, my mom’s favorite animal. Hopefully no one kisses him; I can guarantee he won’t turn into a prince!
As I placed my final items around the playground, a dad caught my eye and said, “I have a pretty purple princess who would love to have whatever you’re passing out.” I smiled and pointed at the bench near the front of the park. “Please take those! They’re free! I’m doing random acts of kindness today, so take what you like!” His smile grew even wider as he replied, “Thank you!”
Doing random acts of kindness always brightens someone’s day! If you missed out on #AMOK2016, then pick your own day to spread kindness to others and share out when you do. Every day is a perfect day to be kind!
Did you know that today, March 1, 2014, is the Annual Melee of Kindness? According to http://www.therandomact.org, over 498 participants in 18 countries performed 156 acts of kindness all in one day last year. How fun!
This year, I’m adding two of my own acts to the list. Read below to find out what I did!
AMOK RAK #1
My niece has a severe dairy allergy that prevents her from enjoying many of the sweet treats children take for granted. Ice cream. Chocolate. Cookies. Cake. Sure, there are substitutes out there she can have but nothing can compare to a surprise trip to an ice cream parlor like Sweet Frog or Coldstone. We were chatting one afternoon and being almost 7 she said that she was too scared to get retested because she knew it would hurt. I told her if she went ahead with the test and found out she wasn’t allergic to dairy anymore that I would take her out and she could get any ice cream she wanted!
Well, my brave little niece went ahead and got retested only to discover she had not outgrown her allergy. No ice cream allowed. Poor thing! I found out what her favorite candies were (that she was allowed to eat) and made her this candy gift instead. It wasn’t much, but it was the least I could do to reward her bravery!
AMOK RAK #2
In preparation of making the candy treat above, I went to our local grocery store to purchase the items needed. As I was walking through the busy parking lot, I heard an older gentleman asking for directions. “Excuse me, can you help me find Fed Ex?” He was holding a piece of paper, pointing to something circled, the Fed Ex emblem bright enough to see several feet away.
Now let me stop here to say I am cautious about speaking to strangers, especially when I am alone. However, this was a very busy parking lot with cars and people all around, and something prompted me to smile and offer my assistance. “Absolutely!” I responded. I walked towards him and sure enough, the item circled on his paper was a street address for Fed Ex. I really had no idea how to get there, so I pulled out my cell phone, located my favorite traffic/navigation app, Waze, and punched in the address.
“Ahhh – that’s why you are lost… this street actually stops at a dead end, then picks back up on the other side of a neighborhood.” I could see the relief flood through his eyes. “Thank you so much!” he replied. “I’ve been driving up and down the road and thought I had lost my mind!”
I explained to him exactly where to go, then we parted ways with smiles on both our faces. It felt good to help out someone in need!
I hope you are blessed by my stories and inspired to do your own RAK today in celebration of AMOK! 🙂