Well, 2011 is over…which means RACK’ing is also over. What an experience that turned out to be. Like most experiences, there were good things, bad things, things learned, things that were dismal failures.
Here’s what I learned:
- When we do this again, I need to rename it. Perhaps I just adopted the wrong title, because in retrospect, our intentions never matched the more generally accepted concept. There was hardly anything RANDOM about our acts. In fact, most of the recipients we chose were intended, and that was by design. Here’s why…Approaching strangers (ie, random people) is really hard for my kids. I mean really hard. And it’s not necessarily one that I wanted to teach right now. Second, while this may be controversial, I wanted my kids to receive positive feedback. And by that, I simply mean that I didn’t want anyone snarling at them and turning down their acts, and sad as it is, I know that this happened to a few kids out there. And finally, a lot of my friends struggled this past season. I wanted my kids to be part adding to the holiday spirit and to know how good it feels to help a friend. So next year, we’ll rename this – it won’t be Random Acts of Christmas Kindness. I don’t know what it’ll be, but it won’t include the word RANDOM.
- I also learned that everyone needs to be on board for this to work.
- I learned that you have to be flexible. Or have a list of smaller acts for those really busy days when no one gets home until 5:00.
- I learned that when reminded, my kids have good hearts. Perhaps what I really learned, is that as their mom, it’s my job to constantly remind them to be good to their friends. To look for an act of kindness everyday, until it becomes part of their daily habits.
Not surprisingly, RACKing didn’t go perfectly. Nothing ever does with kids 🙂 We didn’t get to hand out all of our homeless kits because I didn’t realize how aggressive the city is about hiding homelessness during the holiday season. How sad is that? So we have one more in our car that we just keep there for the next time we see someone who needs it. My kids loved taking cards down to the local firestation. They got a tour of the station and they loved that they could see their card hanging on the bulletin board from the front window. They really enjoyed packing meals for the needy through our church, and they were surprised at how close to home some of those bags stayed when we delivered them later that afternoon. They had fun leaving candy canes on cars and buying bags of popcorn for their friends at school. I loved hearing how my littlest one just kept finding little things to do to make someone smile.
All in all a good experience, even though I was about ready to throw in the towel about half way through.
It’s been awhile, but here is a lunch. I don’t know that I took any pictures of lunches in December. Mostly because my kids haven’t getting much variety and I wasn’t in the mood to pack any creative or fun holiday lunches. Today’s lunch was all about cleaning up the random leftovers:
The Contents – Pita wedges, apple bits, carrot and celery sticks, summer sausage and spritz cookies. Not shown, a small container of hummus.
Finally, a very heartfelt word of thanks to all of you who stop by to read my blog. Whether you are a subscriber or someone who just stops by on occassion (or even once), I do very much appreciate your readership! I hope your 2012 is off to a good start!