"In every walk with nature one receives more than he seeks."
John Muir

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Doing the Most Good

Today is December 20. Already.
I hold on tight to each day, willing it to linger.
Why the rush? I pull the special moments close to me,
bury my face in the softness of them, inhaling the fragrance of their sweetness.
Memorizing this fragrance for days when I may need to recall it.

Sweetness wrapped in the loveliness of my granddaughter.
6 years old--almost 7, she has come to share some of her days.
School vacations mean overnights with Grandma and Popeye.
And these are especially good days since they are countable-
before-Christmas-days! We check the calendar each morning
and her eyes sparkle a bit brighter with each one.
She adds so much happiness to our home.
The child in me has come out to play with her.

Today we spent a small bit of our morning standing outside
of the entrance to Walmart.
We rang the bell for the Salvation Army.
The sign over the red bucket read "DOING THE MOST GOOD"
and we discussed the purpose of said bucket.
She stumped me with her questions me about the soldiers
until I realized she assumed the "Army" was a military one.
Ah, delightful glimpses into the mind of a child.
They give me pause and redirect my thinking.

As we had rehearsed, she politely greeted each shopper with a smile, a cheery
"Merry Christmas!" and "Thank you" if there was a donation.
The few preoccupied shoppers that happened to ignore us were a puzzle
to her and we had a good talk about sharing kindness to everyone,
whether or not it was returned.
Taking responsibility for our own actions.
Putting our own needs second.
Lessons many of us still need to learn or at least review.

The day was pleasant, the sun warm on our faces.
But an hour is a long time when one is 6-going-on-7.
When our shift ended she gladly handed over the bell to the next volunteer.
Her smile never faded and her pure little heart touched many.
She earned the Happy Meal and ice cream reward that followed.
She had done "the most good"she could for that moment.
Is that not the best each of us can do?

I hope we began a new tradition today.


  1. Oh Gigi you are just the best! Good idea, mother! Sweet post.

  2. what wonderful new traditions you two have started this week, tree decorating, cookies, looking at lights and bell ringing. I am so happy Gigi is there with you and dad. With grandma too you must feel rich this season!