Welcome! This site is an endeavor to spread an attitude of positive thinking and optimism. By searching for joy and beauty in all things - even the mundane, perhaps a smile will spread from my computer ... to you!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Pay It Forward Fridays: Shopping With A " Stranger "

I missed last weeks "Pay It Forward Friday" - had a much-needed date-night with my hubby last Friday, and it was simply too late when I got home to write!

Been thinking about what I could do for someone this week, and my opportunity presented itself in a very fun way on Wednesday.  After meeting a "long-lost" friend for an amazing lunch, I stopped at our local craft and hobby store for some supplies and 4th of July decorations.  I had made arrangements to take my youngest niece out to the movies that afternoon but fortunately wasn't in too much of a rush.

Holding some decorations and a couple jars of decoupage glue, I was searching the aisles for a specific kind of craft paint.  Looking up and down the racks, the woman next to me leaned over and pointed to the items in my arms - "you look like a crafty person, could I ask for your opinion?"

Now, the first thing that came to my mind was "I look like a crafty person?"  But I found myself answering her with a "sure!!" anyway.  I'm certainly not an expert in any particular art medium - by any means.  But I have dabbled in quite a few craft projects over the years, particularly faux and decorative painting.  Trying to decide the best way to make over a gold, plastic angel, we started to fall into an easy discussion about paints that would offer the best coverage and give her the look that she required. 

The next thing I knew, we were walking up and down the aisles together, searching for products and discussing color-choices.  Before I knew it, 20 minutes had gone by!  Again I wasn't in a hurry, but I did need to pick up my niece in a timely manner. 

My new friend and I continued to discuss her project and look at paints for another 10 minutes, and I then explained I needed to check out.  She thanked me profusely, and I felt genuinely happy when I responded with "it was my pleasure."  I bid her the best of luck on her project, and wished her a wonderful holiday weekend.  With another thank you and "Happy 4th of July," we parted without ever exchanging names.

I don't know if I've ever done that before - I mean, I've quickly helped someone look for something in a store before, but to actually spend a little time discussing something and exchanging ideas with a total stranger?  Never.  And it was cool!

I feel like my little random act of kindness was "re-paid" yesterday when going to lunch with my boys at a local fast-food chicken place - the restaurant was absolutely packed, and we had trays full of food and no where to sit.  Another mother with two kids in tow came up to me and said we could have their table.  They weren't even quite finished - her little girl was still finishing up her dessert, but she gave us her table anyway. 

Hmmmm..... one simple act of kindness begets another?  Hard to prove, I know.  Still, I can't help but wonder what our world would be like if we ALL started to practice these tiny - yet significant - little exercises of cheer and kindness.

Wow - isn't it cool to know there are strangers out there who are our friends?

Pay it forward - Spread a smile!

Photo courtesy Google Images and Photosearch


  1. You have just won an award, come on over to my blog to pick it up! Thanx for giving us all some substance to read :)

  2. I love this post! I truly believe in kindnesses coming full circle. :)
    Also, I met one of my best friends much like you met this woman in your blog post. I was buying yarn (I crochet and knit) and she was there with her young son, and I heard her saying to him that they wouldn't be able to finish the project because the yarn they were looking for was all gone. I have a HUGE yarn collection and asked her what she was looking for, turned out I had 2 skeins of it, and then it turned out we live one street away from one another, and came from the same county in another state from where we live now!! Neat, huh?

  3. Suzie - THANK you...wow, I am honored. I sent you a message back at your site!

    Michele - That is SO cool!!! God places people DIRECTLY in our paths at amazing moments, doesn't He?

  4. This is awesome, Pam. I am a true believer in what goes around comes around. Well done!

  5. I need to run into someone like you when I'm in the craft store! I'm always lost in there.

  6. I love it!! Very cool. Thank you for sharing :) As always, love your positive twists on life !


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