Kindness and a Birthday. Hey, Be Nice and Don’t Tell The Internet My Mom is 55.

11 June 2013

If you’ve been reading here for any length of time, you might remember a few years ago, for my 34 birthday, we did 34 random acts of kindness.  It was awesome, it made me feel amazing.  I still tear up three years later when I watch the video that my sister put together or when I read all of the sweet RAOK all of you all did on my behalf.  I had lots and lots of help to get it all done from good friends like Stephanie, Danielle, Noelle, Kelly, and my sisters Lyndsey and Elise.  But mostly, it was my mom. 


A friend recently told me, “she is good people,” and she is.  She really, really is.

Now, most of you know and love my Janet stories because she is a lunatic.  Straight crazy and without a filter… you all wonder why I am the way I am?  You now have your answer. 

I have, over the years, shared with you the time that she met Snoop Dog and the recycling incident with “that guy” from Nine Inch Nails

I’ve told you her secrets like the time that she almost destroyed the living room with a 10 foot Christmas tree, the fact that she still legit writes paper checks at stores like an old lady, and that she buys karma points because she thinks that is an actual thing that the karma powers that be allow. 

You all have laughed, cheered, and adored her hilarious comments.  Even when she told the internet that her first kiss was Bill Voyles in kindergarten.


{And Bill Voyles, if you are Googling yourself and find this, if you kissed my mother in kindergarten, you are now my nemesis!}

I have shared her with you.  And even though she doesn’t understand why the internet wants to read this particular brand of crazy, she likes you guys too. 

She decided that she wanted to do 55 acts of kindness for her birthday this year. 

Because she is old, she has been doing one thing each day leading up to her her birthday, rather than doing it all in one day.  That is almost two full months of consciously doing something kind each day.  {I’m having a tough time blogging something each day and we’re only on day 12!}  She started at the end of April on a business trip to NYC if that isn’t a tough place to do something nice for a stranger!  And now, we are a little over a week away.  I’m not going to tell you what lovely things she’s done, but I’ll tell you that they have been really touching.  And now, the favor that I’m going to ask… 

Will you please do something sweet and small this week on her behalf to end her 55 days of giving with a bang? 

I’m guessing, if she is right, that would buy you like a whole day of karma points.  I would love it if you came back and left a comment, even anonymously, about what you did and wished her a happy birthday.  But you don’t even have to do that, just put some kindness out there this week.

You don’t have any ideas? 

  • Open a door. 
  • Smile at someone and say hello. 
  • Buy someone’s coffee.  Or lunch. 
  • Pick up trash and throw it away. 
  • Leave a dollar taped to the vending machine at work so someone can get a soda. 
  • Give someone a hug.  
  • Be courteous while driving.  
  • Leave coupons tucked on the shelf for items at the grocery store.  
  • Offer to take your grandparents to dinner. 
  • Call your mother and tell her how amazing she is. 
  • Write a letter to someone who has helped you in the past and thank them. 
  • Make a donation to your favorite charity. 
  • Give bottles of water to people working outside. 
  • Offer to babysit for a friend. 
  • Leave a note and a bottle of water for your mailman. 
  • Take donuts to the firehouse or the police station. 
  • Clean out your closet and donate the clothes you no longer need. 
  • Help someone clean up their yard. 
  • Visit a nursing home.
  • Volunteer at a soup kitchen. 
  • Donate to a school. 
  • Take pet supplies to a rescue.
  • Leave a huge tip for your waitress.
  • Say THANK YOU. 
  • Help someone.

Go on, do something kind.


@JessEsco said...

Dear Michelle's mom,

I love your daughter. She is amazing. I'm so thankful she wrote this blog because then I could meet her at Blissdom and also she hugged me in real life. I'm not just a crazy in her computer.

This morning, I bought a hot chocolate for one of my coworkers just because.

Last night I had Chinese food delivered to my grandparents in El Paso for their anniversary since my grandma doesn't really cook anymore.

This week will be all about the RAOK for Janet.

I might even buy Michelle a present when I go to the George W. Bush Presidential Library this weekend because I know she'd love it.


MommyLisa said...

I am going Thursday night to help my Mother and Father organize an Estate Sale for their friends. Right before they were to move into assisted living, like two DAYS, he fell and broke his hip - she is more into Alzheimers than out of it - so, no assisted living for now. And they are hoarders, so it has been really stressful on my mother who retired at the end of January. You read that - JANUARY and things are finally going to get back to more "normal". The gentleman FINALLY got a new hip and is on the mend. My parents are their power of attorney for financial and medical matters - so it is a LOT. They need the help, so I got a sitter for Boo Boo and am rolling up my sleeves. We will go Saturday too for the sale.

MommyLisa said...

But - we should take donuts to our police/fire station too. Hmmmmm.

rosebud7 said...

I will tolerate my office mate and his chewing food with his mouth open. I will not say "shut your f****** mouth you moron" all this week. Your mom is the one person who would know how hard this is to do and deem this as the ultimate act of kindness.

frankie b.

Anonymous said...

WOW....let's first get past my daughter has told the world my FREAKIN age...ah, um okay ...where was I? Thanks for the RAok from all of you (and I am thinking about using them for my very own karma savings account ...which will give me the right to WITHDRAWL for morons who chew with their mouth open) - I am honored!!!!....all I can say is your acts help all the cynics that deem our world "I got mine you get your-gasim" on the outside of Happy-givingtown! As Michelle stated, I don't much understand why you all what to read this stuff (I mean YOU must have your own craziness daily), but am grateful you do...because it makes my daughter happy to "talk" to you and have you in her life.... And hey, what more can a mom want but for her kids but for them to be happy ....WAIT, this is about ME....what more can I want than to be happy because you're all RAoK-ers this week! Now do ME a favor and ask a friend to RAoK this week with you and have them pass it on too....(if you can score Michelle some blog awarenss I can USE THAT as a RAoK - just cause it's my birthday :)
Michelle and Lyndsey's mom (aka Joan Crawford)

Anonymous said...

You just pretend to be all feisty and sassy. Underneath you have the kindest heart of anyone I know. You don't need to do RAoK because you are just one big RAoK every day. I took Jim to the eye doctor today in SF then lunch afterward and left a huge tip in your honor. Michelle, you are one lucky lady to have a Mom like Janet.
Love you both
Aunt Linda

Laurie said...

OK I will just say this much, I did a three hour tour in Walmart yesterday so my mom could get a pedicure and manicure which by the way she has been very sick for many months and this was her first big outing. That is not a RAOK just a daughter's duty because she loves her. So when we were in line she was behind me in her motorized cart and another lady in a motorized cart was trying to find a short line. I said" Come on lady, get in front of me, hurry, and sorry I can be bossy" She laughed, she did not know that I had been there 3 hours, and she couldn't reach the checkout so I unloaded her basket and checked her out with her card because she barely could reach that ,(by the way Walmart thanks for accommodating the physically challenged)she then thanked me and went on her way! So Happy Birthday Missy my hat's off to you love you, jma rocks

Leslee @ This Friendly Life said...

I absolutely adore this post! For my 35th birthday I did 35 RAOK, usually one a day on the months leading up to my acutaly birthday. It was amazing to think of something every single day to brighten the day of a fellow being.

For your Mama, I will definitely find a few RAOK, including giving blood this week.

Very cool post.

Anonymous said...

My favorite Janet story comes in the form of an equation. Janet + running + sewer grate = a string of unmentionable words that spewed from Janet's mouth and a swollen ankle. Janet, I love you and still stop and laugh my ass off every time I come across a sewer grate while running. Who steps on the sewer grate??? Seriously! For over 20 years I think of this story every time I run. And yes I will do some RAOK this week for you. Happy Birthday, Love, Sarah.

emili said...

I gave tickets to a local baseball game to a co-worker who couldn't afford to take his sons.

Anonymous said...

I gave some of baby M's new toys to a family friend's baby when I realized she loved playing with them and the mom could not afford to buy them.

I also sent her home with diapers and formula.

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday and thank you for all the kindness you do, encourage, and inspire. I will keep the kindness going :)

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