What a Snowy Day and Random Act of Kindness Taught My Children

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Snow Day in Park Forest Village

 I crawled out of bed this super early this morning and peeked outside my window. Brrr, the front yard was covered with several inches of glistening white snow. I checked the back yard–it was transformed into a fairy-like winter wonderland! My boys’ hopes and previous night’s predictions came true!

The official call came at around 5:30 a.m. – schools would be closed, thanks to 5-9 inches of snow. It was still snowing. I crawled back into bed and was pleasantly surprised when my cellphone ‘pinged’ with  a text message — Penn State was operating on a delayed start schedule thanks to the snow. Yay, I could sleep a few more hours and then bake almond croissants for breakfast. Nothing beats the luxury of time: time to eat breakfast, time to chat with my kids, and of course, time to go back to sleep!

Sadly, my sleep wasn’t completely restful. My subconscious kept drifting back to the pesky problem of snow piling up on the sidewalk and in my driveway. I dozed in and out of consciousness and decided that a more nimble family member could shovel the snow. I set my alarm for 9:30 a.m., but naturally I hit the snooze button several times, because, well, that’s what one does on a snowy day, right?

I finally rolled out of bed and went downstairs to check on the rising almond croissants (set out overnight to ‘proof’ or rise). As they were baking, my older son woke up. I asked if he could please help out and at least shovel the end of the driveway where the snow plow had deposited chunks of ice. I have an SUV, but it is useless on slippery surfaces as it doesn’t have 4 wheel drive (note to self, get a 4WD vehicle next time!)

Small Town, Big (Random) Act of Kindness

I sat down for a cup of coffee while my son was toiling outside. I could hear the shovel. Suddenly, I heard a loud motor and saw that someone (no idea who) was clearing our sidewalk with a snow blower. Then he moved on and did 1/2 of the driveway as well. My son finished up the middle of the driveway by hand, but he finished in record time, thanks to the good snowblower Samaritan.

My son learned a valuable lesson today about random acts of kindness and how helping others builds community. He helped me and in turn, a kindhearted neighbor whom we don’t know arrived and helped him. Despite the cold, wintry weather, this random act of kindness truly warmed our hearts! Oh, and so did the yummy almond croissants as well as the sight of my fluffy orange tabby cat, Zoom Zoom, contemplating the giant red amaryllis sitting on the window ledge.

I’d love to hear about your experience with Random Acts of Kindness (giving and/or receiving) and building community in the comments section. Have a great day! And remember, spring is just around the corner 🙂


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