About a year ago, I took time out from my blog to reflect and to work on many of the ideas I had posted about. Then the pandemic hit, and with it the suffering, job losses and uncertainty that plagued so many of us. Then, here in the U.S. the most divisive election year in over 100 years threatened to tear us apart. No one is immune from this suffering.
I have discovered that even with this pandemic, there are ways we can shed our light and help each other. I discovered a group on Facebook called “Postcards for Kindness”. This group posts the names and addresses of sick, lonely and elderly people and you can send them a card to cheer them up. I try to limit my trips to the store, etc. so I buy my cards, postcards and stamps online. There is also “Postcards of Kindness-United States”, and a group “Human Acts of Kindness”, there is also a group “Acts of Kindness”, but that is a private group and you have to request permission to join.
I try to call, text and write to friends and family more. That is the very least I can do to let someone know I am thinking of them. No one wants to feel forgotten.
I have also started crocheting again, although I am incredibly slow. However, at Christmastime, I was able to crochet a number of dishcloths and soap sacks for our local homeless shelter to distribute to the needy. Soap sacks are nifty little contraptions that the homeless and needy can use for their showers. They can be knitted or crocheted using 100% cotton yarn (Sugar and Cream, for example). The pouch can be used to store the soap and as a washcloth. You can read more about them in Welcome to Soap S.A.C.K. – Supporting a Community with Kindness (http://www.soapsacks.com/). This group was started to provide hygiene items to people who are basically food insecure and are unable to use food stamps to buy them. It must be harsh, having to choose between nourishment or hygiene. You can get the patterns on their website and fill the sacks with the bar soap of your choosing. Then either drop off at a local shelter or YWCA, or send to S.A.C.K. Either way, they will get to the people who need them. The sacks are easy and fun to make. If I can do it, ANYONE can do it. While I was reviewing my resources for the soap sacks I stumbled across an interesting article. When a person asks you for money on the street, you may be able to help them more than you think. McDonald’s Dollar Menu enables a person to get a cooked food item for just $1! Man, I could have used that when I was in college. Times were tough. And when you share some of your money with your neighbor, don’t just toss it at them. Look them in the eye, ask them their name and ask them to pray for you. This way it is not charity, but a legitimate transaction. It enables the recipient to maintain their dignity.
Another time-tested way to help our neighbors is to buy local. Rather than have your money siphoning into the truly deep pockets of some CEO, or being sent overseas to some poor, overworked, underpaid worker, it can enable someone to make a house payment, buy groceries or pay their utility bills. When you shop locally, the money stays in our community.
I have so much more to talk about, but my time is running short. I hope to hear from you very soon.
“A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees.” Amelia Earheart