Tag Archives: N is for Niceties

N is for Niceties

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Hello my wonderful readers, how are you today?  I hope you’re enjoy the snow, and the fact that February is slowly coming to an end.  Come on March!!!! 🙂

It’s been a good weekend.  A Die Hard marathon, Penguins hockey, and the season finale of Downton Abbey tonight (although I don’t want to watch it because I know what happens and I’m super mad!!)  If Initech wasn’t driving me so crazy during the work week, I’d say I would be having a blast!! 😀

So if you’ve been waiting all week to find out what I’ve been up to with my alphabet weekends, I’m happy to tell you I can finally let you in on my closely-guarded secret.  Not too closely guarded, mind you, but close enough!

When I decided to start this year-long adventure, there were a lot of weekend activities I chose that were different, outside the normal realm of my average weekend.  I chose things I had never done before, things I was afraid to try, things I hated doing, things I knew would be once-in-a-lifetime opportunities.  If I was going to invest an entire year to blogging, I wanted to make sure at the end of the year I could look back and say, wow, I did a lot of stuff!! So far about 6 months into this, that has definitely been true.

A few things on the list were added simply because I wanted to be goofy, and have fun, and have funny stories someday when people asked, “What’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever done when _______?”  And this weekend was no different.  I wanted to do something wacky, something crazy, and I decided to do it at the library.

I love surprises.  I love giving surprises, and I love receiving surprises.  To me, surprising someone is the ultimate way of showing them you care, you love them, you were simply thinking about them.  And in a way, I think it’s a super humbling experience.  I honestly can’t get enough of them.

What I love more than surprises, though, are random acts of kindness.  I love when you find a stranger has done something wonderful for you simply because.  At Christmas I paid for the car behind me in the drive-thru.  A few weeks ago someone left an extra quarter at the soda machine that I desperately needed.  Those experiences are the most humbling of all, because it shows that you want to do something nice, but expect no recognition in return.  They help me believe that even in a world that is full of wars, crimes, violence, and drug problems, there is still a small part of human nature that wants to do good in this world.

So I decided to do a few random acts of kindness this weekend, but venture a little more to the crazy side of it.  I couldn’t go pay for everyone’s meal at Eat N’Park, nor could I really afford to go and play the lottery for everyone (I wish).  But in my opinion, sometimes the biggest acts of kindness come from a small inspiration, and that’s what I tried to do this weekend.

20130217_125337To set up my sting (as I called it), I headed out to the Hampton library.  It’s a wonderful library, nice and big, and deserted (damn you, Kindle!) the perfect place to get lost and set up shop.  I headed in, found a back corner where I couldn’t be disturbed, and dug the supplies out of my over-sized purse.

The idea was simple: I was going to write out inspiring thoughts, compliments, and quotes on index cards, and hide them in books all over the library.  Completely harmless, absolutely anonymous (unless some crazy goes dusting for finger prints), and best of all, hopefully positive and/or uplifting to the people who eventually find them.  On the back of each card I simply put the URL for this blog post, in case they wondered why in the heck some random card was stashed in their book.  And then I went to work.

Half of the fun was choosing which books to place the cards in.  On one card I simply  wrote “You are beautiful”.  I found a well-worn copy of a popular diet book on one shelf and hid the card within the pages of it for someone to find.  Hopefully it will remind them that no matter what they think about themselves, they are still beautiful. 20130217_125408 One quote about the power we find within ourselves I hid in a book about 20th century dictators (see the irony there!)  Some cards were hidden in best sellers, others in books I’m not sure had been removed from the shelf in over 20 years.  Some were left in books I love, like on the right, a card left in the book Unbroken, while I purposefully also stuck a card in Dante’s Inferno, one of my least-favorite books. 🙂  I figured if some poor soul was stuck reading Dante, they might need a little motivation to not gouge their eyeballs out.

In the end, some nosy librarian might have stalked me around the building, documented every book I touched, and then removed all the cards after I left the building, and no one will be able to see everything I hid.  But maybe, just maybe, a few will be discovered by random people throughout Allegheny County, people who need a good reason to laugh, or a smile, or a kind word.  They might throw it out, they might think it’s creepy, they might even ignore it.  But that’s the wonderful thing about random acts of kindness: you never know where they might lead, or who they might help, or how they might change the world. 🙂

Be inspired, and find a random act of kindness to do sometimes this week.  Maybe we can start a new trend, blowing up libraries around the world with index cards.  If you leave index card compliments in any books, leave me a comment and let me know so we can see if anything comes of it.  Maybe some how we’ll be the voice of good in 2013. 🙂

I hope you have a wonderful week, wherever you may be in life.  Stay warm, and stay tuned, because we have a super exciting announcement coming up next week!!! 🙂

E

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Next Week: N is for Niceties

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Happy Sunday everyone!!!  How beautiful is it outside today!?  The sun is shining, the snow is melting, and right now my apartment smells like rosemary and garlic.  Try that topped on potatoes.  Take a minute and think about the explosion in your mouth!!  They’re almost don’t cooking, and I can’t wait to eat it.

DowntonAbbey1On top of that, I have bread baking in my slow cooker, a Friends marathon is on TBS currently, and some buffalo chicken dip is due to be consumed in about an hour.  Oh, and Downton Abby is on tonight, holla!!!!  Is anyone else as obsessed with that show as I am??  I seriously cannot get enough of that wonderful show.  Here’s my question, though, does anyone else keep track of how many times you want to smack Mary Crawley in a single episode?

Enough about my wonderful day, though, let’s talk about my adventure next weekend.  Next week is one of those random adventures I’ve always wanted to try, but never had the guts/time/ability to do so.   Not next weekend, though, next weekend, I’m finally making it happen.

Here’s the thing about next week’s surprise: I can’t tell anyone!  Maybe next week should be title S is for Secret, because this adventure has to go off without anyone knowing what’s going on.  I hope you weren’t too excited to hear about it this week, because there’s no way I can tell you!  But I’m super excited about it, and I hope that’s enough of a reason for you to be excited too!

So I’m off to work for a few hours, logging that overtime early to help keep ahead of the storm that is approaching at Initech.  Then it’s food, Downton, and some steamed Boston bread.  Let’s see how this turns out!!

Have a wonderful week.  Try not to think too much about my adventure next week.  And check back next week to see exactly what happened.

E

The Rules of the Game

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Why were our ABC boards never this trendy in elementary school?

By now the anticipation must be coursing through your veins: Lis is starting an AWESOME BLOG!  You could barely sleep last night after reading my post-Olympic post.  You’re dying to know how I’m going to pull this off in a year.  Some of you are thinking to yourself, “I wonder if I can join in on these adventures?”

The answers to those questions are, of course I’m going to pull this off, and YES PLEASE JOIN ME!

Before we start, though, here are the rules I’ve established for the next year:

1. I will complete one adventure every other week for the next year, starting August 3, 2012. This can be slightly flexible to allow for other weekend interruptions, such as holidays, weddings, and dreaded work at Initech.

2. As much as possible, I will try to go in alphabetical order.  That is not always possible, though, given the Pennsylvania weather.  So some weekends will be out of order.  All letters will be covered by the end of the year, though.

3. The alphabet list I have is a working list.  It can, at any time, be altered depending on my mood and ideas.  Part of this year-long journey is about growth.  Maybe even physically.  Would it be such a crime for me to be able to reach the top shelf at the grocery store without climbing on the lower shelves?

4. These activities are designed for anyone at any time.  I can (and plan to) complete many of these activities a la solo.  It’s a way for me to relax, unwind, and regroup.  However, many of these activities are that much more amazing with friends and family, and trust me, over the next year you’ll meet them all.  That being said, let me know if you want to join me on any adventures.  Most of them will be announced a week in advance, so if you’re free, and looking for a fun activity, feel free to let me know.

5. We are working on a next-to-nothing budget right now.  The cheaper the better.  There are a few exceptions to this, which you’ll read about, but even those are being researched, coupon-ed, and discounted as much as possible.

And now, what you’ve all been waiting for: The list of events

A is for Antique Hunting

B is for Bike Riding

C is for Corn Maze

D is for Dance and Dine

E is for Elegance 

F is for Fried Food

G is for Gardens

H is for Hiking Adventures

I is for International Escape

J is for Junk Food Junkie

K is for Kite Flying

L is for Life on the Line

M is for Mason-Dixon Line

N is for Niceties

O is for Organization Patrol

P is for Pamper Party

Q is for Quidditch

R is for Roller Coaster Tycoon

S is for Simon Says

T is for Tourist Trap

U is for Under the Stars

V is for Volunteering

W is for Waves and Water

X is for eXact change

Y is for Yard Sale-ing

Z is for Zoology 

So now I have to ask…what do you think of the list?  Anything you’d add or remove?

I’ll see you in a few days to announce my first destination. Then you can decide if you want to come with me on my initial quest.

-Lis