Delete That

I began writing my blog for today, but wasn’t happy with it. It was a very heavy opinion piece that even made me angry reading it. Not because I wouldn’t agree with my piece, but rather that people could end up offended. And that is not the goal I have with my blog.

So I deleted it.

That blog ceased to be. It is in the dark recesses of technological ones and zeros. I removed it one character at a time. I watched as my cursor blinked slowly at first as each letter vanished. Then whole words disappeared, followed by entire sentences.

So now you get this blog entry instead. I wish it was more inspiring. Perhaps it is?

Perhaps not sharing a differing opinion because I knew it could push some buttons is in fact an inspiration.

Mighty Neighborly

Yesterday we received a good dumping of snow that School was cancelled. Our side street is always neglected by the snow plows which sucks. Driving in or out of our home is tough. But our neighbor across the street is always Determined to plow the snow every year in order to get out of his driveway for breakfast. He saw my kids shoveling our driveway and decided to come over and use his tractor to clean up our driveway a bit faster. This made my kids happy.

Later in the day, our daughter took it upon herself to make him a thank you card. She also included a couple of packets of hot chocolate for him. She wasn’t asked to do this. Which means that my wife and I have instilled a great set of values on our children.

Kindness and compassion are paramount when it comes to being a good person. Doing it without cause or applause is a much greater feeling as well. (Chances are my kids won’t read today’s blog). I think we’ve done a pretty bang up job as parents that’s for sure. I’m also really happy that our neighbors are such kind people as well.

I love my community.

Trust and Kindness

Trust is something that you can’t come by easily. But to have a complete stranger trust you is even more scarce. Especially when it comes to money. My story here is a simple one, but made my heart smile nonetheless.

Yesterday as I was driving home from the school with my kids, I stopped at a person selling flowers on the side of the road. She has set up in the same location for a couple of years now selling flowers out the back of her van. We often drive past without thinking twice. Yesterday I finally decided to stop and surprise my wife with a bouquet of flowers.

As I was talking to the lady, I realized I had no cash on me. So I asked if she takes debit or credit cards. Since I’ve worked conventions- many people set up a Square account to be able to make such transactions, which seems to be the trend nowadays. Unfortunately, this lady did not have a card reader. I was ready to thank her for her time…

Immediately she asked me which bouquet I wanted and told me to pay her back another time. Even with my repeated objections, she insisted. I chose a lovely full arrangement of flowers. The flowers looked great when put them on our table at home.

But it gets better.

My daughter this morning texted me that she put $20 in my wallet to cover the cost of the flowers. I was not expecting that from her. It seems that kindness can rub off on people. Seems like our parenting skills are paying off.

But wait there’s more!

I returned today to pay the flower lady the $20 for the bouquet (which is a good deal for the amount of flowers btw). She was smiling and thanked me for the payment. Before we walked away, she handed my son a large yellow daisy.

Just because.

Kindness is contagious. This stranger trusted me. I could have chosen to not pay her back. But the guilt would have eaten at me every time I drove past her. Because I’m not that type of person- I could never have done that.

Instead, I will have a smile in my heart when I see the back of her van propped open and buckets of flowers placed around her feet.

Play Nice

There’s too much anger in the world. That it makes me sad.

I have found lately, that as much as I try to ignore it, people are very vocal about their opinions. To a point where they stop listening and just do talking.

I want to be open minded about people’s opinions on politics, religion, money, entertainment, and even life. Just because I am open minded, doesn’t mean I need to agree with one stance or another. It means I can accept that we have a difference of opinion, but remain respectful of it.

Anyways, don’t get angry with someone just because they don’t share the same beliefs as you. Get angry at them for not using coasters under their drink glasses. That is unacceptable.

My Pleasure

“My Pleasure”

I learned that quote from my Disney Training back in my days of the movie theater. (I also learned a four finger point, but that’s not important here). I still use the term “My Pleasure” everyday. No matter what type of interaction I have. It is one of my favorite sayings instead of “You’re welcome.” or “No Problem.”

Here’re the reasons such a phrase works well as a response to them saying, “Thank You.”. “You’re Welcome.” Implies that the actions fall solely on the other person.

“No Problem.” Is forcing a negative connotation into your response. People hear the first word and it creates a poor emotional response.

“My Pleasure.” Shows that you care about what you are doing for the other person.

I recently had a “Chat Conversation” with an Apple representative. He used the term “My Pleasure” three times during it. In the the end he was very helpful, so I kept the conversation upbeat. Using positive terminology helped in getting my issue resolved quickly and efficiently.

What I have learned is that using positivity gets positive results.

Socially Accepted Kindness

I find it weird when someone at work talks about me behind my back. Especially when it’s something nice- that’s even worse. I don’t do compliments well.

Turns out I’m making a good impression at work lately. I think it comes from the fact that I am honest and polite. Or maybe it’s because of my obsession with Star Wars. Or perhaps my use of movie quotes in daily conversations. Whatever the case may be- I’m not sure I like it.

But being kind and listening to others makes me feel good. If I do talk about someone behind their back, I will say it to their face as well. No point in hiding behind rumors and hearsay.

I like being nice though. I guess it shows and people talk. 😎

My Ever Growing Online Family

Blogging is fun. I do the writing mostly for myself, but it seems others enjoy reading about my life. From old friends to complete strangers- everyone has been relatively positive about what I share. Good feels.

I’ve also enjoyed online interactions with my fellow bloggers. Every week, I am interacting with more and more people. They are like Magical Internet Faeries spreading joy in my life. On this journey, I’ve been lucky enough to dodge the trolls.

Or perhaps the trend is swaying in the right direction? I have found lately that people proudly share more positivity, and say things like love conquers all or even hate leads to suffering…

Whatever the reason may be, I’m really happy to be a part of the online community. Keep up the good work universe and all you Internet Faeries who bring me joy! You know who you are.

Emotional Feedings

Turns out that if I’m feeling down, my wife feels down. We’ve been together for many years now. We share emotions and feelings- oftentimes feeding off one another. I always knew this to be true.

25 years ago I read “The Celestine Prophecy“. I wouldn’t say I’m spiritual or New Age in any form. But this book (and its sequels) made me realize more about human interactions than I thought possible. I’ve lived my life with a knowledge that people feed off one another’s feelings and emotions. Both good and bad. This book is also a part of the reason I want to visit Peru. Maybe I will try and find my own “Spiritual Journey” one day.

Before I go and book a plane ticket, there are plenty of practices I do already that I learned from these books. I try and surround myself with positivity and kindness. My friends are people who bring me joy. At work, I try and keep an upbeat attitude. It usually helps relieve tensions.

With a family of five at home, there have been times that each of us struggle to have control. I hope my children take the time to read these books. It will help build stronger empathetic characteristics in them. They already care about others, but there’s always more that could be done.

After we talked about our feelings, my wife and I are getting back on track. We are setting some lofty goals for the year and finding ways to relax. I love my naps, and she loves her video games. Both are excellent ways to combat those “blah” feelings. Maybe it’s time to re-read the “Celestine Prophecy“.

The Kindness Of Friends

We have been without power now for 27 hours and counting… Yesterday wasn’t so bad, read about it here: No Power No Problem. But after a while it is getting a bit taxing.

We haven’t seen an end in sight for when the power will be restored during this ice storm. Warm fires and board games don’t exactly feed the family. We did a sandwich spread last night which was tasty. I used a cast iron pan in the fireplace to toast up the breads (almost like a grilled cheese). This morning was scrambled eggs and bacon with boiled water making French pressed coffee. My family wasn’t going to starve by any means.

After a bit of “Social Media Complaining” a friend of ours invited us over for dinner. We wholeheartedly accepted! We gladly drove for about a half hour to have use of flushing toilets, electricity and being fed. Our friend makes fantastic meals and we often share plans with one another. They’ve come to our place on occasion as well.

A bottle of wine and a case of beer were brought over to share. Accepting the kindness from friends reassures me that people are wonderful. Good conversation and good food made our evening extremely pleasant. I’ll never not take up someone’s offer to be kind. It’s not a handout- it’s friendship. It’s looking out for those who matter most to you.

Thank you to my friends for opening their doors and hearts to my family tonight. Your love and kindness is appreciated!

Becoming an Everyday Hero

There’s a famous Canadian that has said some things and done some things. Then there’s me.

I’ve also said some things and done some things. What surprises me is the impact of my words and actions vs someone famous. I don’t have the same size audience. Mine is much smaller, a bit closer to me, perhaps even a bit more intimate.

My audience is my children and my wife. My audience is my friends and coworkers. My audience is complete strangers.

Somehow I have made an impact on each life I touch. I have received handshakes and thank you cards for just being me. I have been acknowledged for my actions or my patience- through emails and phone calls. It surprises me each and every time it happens.

All I ever want to do is make the world a better place. I want to watch others succeed. I want people to realize that happiness comes from within.

That’s just who I am. A regular Joe. An everyday hero to no one in particular.