Tuesday, December 31, 2013

DAY 365: New Years Kisses & Reflection

We did it! 365 days under the belt. And when I say we, I mean it. This entire year would not have been possible without everyone who supported me. Without my parents, I can sincerely say I would not have made it. Also, thank you to all of my friends who jumped onboard to help me think of ideas and helped me complete several acts. I can safely say that the last year has flown by and has definitely been a test for me. I have learned so much about myself and about people in general. Before I reflect back on the year, first let me tell you how I rounded out the year.

With the new year just around the corner, people anxiously wait for the clock to hit midnight. Some look forward to a brighter future, while others look forward to that moment when the clock strikes 12 so they can kiss their loved ones. Well, for those of us that who don't have anyone to kiss, I am here. However, my kisses are in the form of chocolate. I boxed up a few mints (so your breath is just right) and Hershey kisses to help ring in the new year. Along with the chocolates and mints I added a note that read, "Happy New Year! These kisses are mint to brighten your day." Then my dad and I ran around and handed them out to people and placed a few on cars outside of the grocery store.

So…now that I have officially completed 365 days of kindness, it is time to take a look back. As mentioned, I can't believe how much I have learned within one year and they are listed below.

I don't say thank you enough. I went through the year going above and beyond to express my gratitude and what I found was pretty amazing. People are great. They do great things on a daily basis. They don't expect large praise or fame, but I think all they really need is recognition. They like to know that they are appreciated and what they do matters, because it does. It is awesome to see what their reactions are when you simply say thank you. As the new year rolls around, I dare you to say it more.

I don't stop to "smell the roses" enough. So many times this year I would be looking ahead to what is to come and too busy planning my future. I tend to do this often. I don't allow myself to truly live in the moment and enjoy the present. This is something I am really working on.

People will amaze you. With so much hate and anger circulating throughout the world, it is nice to know that not all of my hope in humanity is lost. Throughout the year, I have met and interacted with people that have astounded me. People still want to make the world a better place. You just have to give them a chance.

Opportunity IS out there, find it. Anything you want and everything you want is out there. Sometimes it takes stepping outside of your comfort zone to go find it. It may require some work and time, but time will pass anyway.

Don't just count your blessings, give them a tight gracious squeeze. If there is one thing that I repeatedly thought, it was, "wow am I blessed." I have  enumerate blessings. Too many to count. While working with people who are less privileged than I am, it really made me appreciate the things I have.
A smile NEVER hurts. It is a scary thought, smiling at a stranger. I mean I can't believe Im the only one who thinks, "what if they took that smile the wrong way?" Truth is a smile is almost always returned with another smile. Again, I dare you to try this one.

Just do it. Nike said it best. If you have your heart set on something, just do it, say it, show it. Whatever! You may not always get the result you want, but at least you're not asking what if?

Those are just a few things that have come to mind. And I know I will continue to reflect on this year because it will be one to remember. I also plan on continuing my blog with new features like my travels and my bucket list. For now, I will focus on school and graduating in six months. You can follow this journey I call life on my twitter and instagram @kailee_dunn.

One year ago today I wrote,
"Every once and awhile I will participate in a random act of kindness without the intent of a thank you or praise, but to instead inspire others to do the same. When an opportune moment presents itself, act! I guarantee somewhere down the line that act will be appreciated and hopefully duplicated. In fact, that is how I got here! "

My hope ultimately is to have inspired at least one person to do something nice for someone. You all have inspired me! Happy new year my friends and God bless all of you.

Until next time,

Monday, December 30, 2013

Day 364: Did Something Nice For Firefighters

Each day that I drive to work, I pass a firefighter station. Every time I drive by, I think about bringing them something and today I did. Also located near where I work is an Albertson's. After work I ran over to Alberston's and bought 2 bags of their delicious cookies that they sell for $5. Then, I ran them into the fire station, which they were thankful for. I really just wanted to give back to our local heroes. Every once in and awhile they need to be appreciated too!

One more day!
God bless,

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Day 363: Care Package For The Homeless

As the holiday season winds down, I reflect back to realize just how incredible blessed I am. I have so much and have so much to be thankful for. Sadly, not everyone has something they are grateful for. For example, in Spokane we have a large homeless population. Throughout the year I have been able to give back to them in various ways, but I have never constructed a care package for them. So in a box I put some essential living supplies like tooth brushes and tooth paste and snacks like beef jerky which is full of protein. I intend to deliver it when I am back in Spokane this weekend!
God bless,

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Day 362: An iPod For Music & Memory

Music & Memory is a non-profit organization that uses music to stimulate memories to enhance the quality of life. According to their website;
"We train nursing home staff and other elder care professionals, as well as family caregivers, how to create and provide personalized playlists using iPods and related digital audio systems that enable those struggling with Alzheimer’s, dementia and other cognitive and physical challenges to reconnect with the world through music-triggered memories."
To play the music, they use devices such as iPods. One of the cool things you can do for this organization is donate an old and unused iPod. If you are interested in donating, there is instructions on how and where to mail the iPod..

My cousin told me about this organization, which I thought was really cool because we lost our grandfather to Alzheimer's. Since losing my grandpa to the awful disease, I am more aware of the efforts being made to fight it. So, I was really excited to help their efforts and donate a gently-used iPod.

3 more days!

God bless,

Day 361: Target Surprise

This evening I had to go to target and got the idea that I wanted to share the love with someone else. I bought a $5 giftcard and left it on their car with a note that said "Happy New Year!"  

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Day 360: Allowed Someone To Cut In Front

Well, it looks like we made it through another Christmas! However, the craziness continued today at all retail store, especially the mall. And like the mad people my mom and I are, we braved the crowds and ventured to a few of the stores. Lines twisted and turned and looked like they could go on for days, like Disneyland long. Who in their right mind would stand in those lines? Or right, my mom and I. While standing in line at Old Navy a women seemed a bit frazzled by the whole situation. Seeing her distressed eyes, we allowed her to cut in front of us and with an ever grateful smile she accepted.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Day 359: Delivered Cookies On Christmas

Merry Christmas everyone! I hope you all are having an incredible day! I know I have. I have spent the day with my family, played a few games and enjoyed a delicious dinner (that I could actually taste, despite my cold.) However, not everyone was  as lucky as some of us and were not able to spend the day with their families. Each year some companies make the unfortunate decision to stay open on Christmas. This means some employees have to work.

I wanted to do something special for those stuck at work, so my mom and I made 4 dozen homemade cookies. This afternoon my dad and I delivered the cookies to a Circle K and Rite Aid that were nearby. The employees behind the counter at both stores were quite frazzled and had a moment of disbelief. I was asked, "are these for me" and "you made these for us?" After the confusion subsided, the gratitude poured in. Each employee said thank you and Merry Christmas, but I also heard "How nice of you" and "I love cookies!" I am happy to put a smile on their face on Christmas and it's easy to say mission complete.

Again, Merry Christmas and God bless!