Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Paying it Forward

I try to do something special every year for Christmas. I usually buy a toy for a child from those little giving trees in Wal-Mart or something. One time they had a tree for seniors. I loved that one! It was for elderly people who are in nursing homes. It's easy to forget that sometimes old people need Christmas presents too.

Those little giving trees in Wal-Mart seemed to have gone away though, because I haven't seen them in a few years. I felt bad this year having not donating anything. But money is tight so I just shrugged it off. But the nagging feeling continued, and I felt like I needed to do something. Anything. Giving to other people is what Christmas is all about right?

I read stories of layaway accounts at K-Marts across the country being paid off by random strangers. What a great idea! I told Jimmy for sure we are going to do that next year. Probably not with a $200 one or something, but with a smaller one. Then my mother in law told me a story about how my sister in law Nancy had her food paid for by the car ahead of her in the Jack in the Box drive thru. What a great idea! I'd never heard of this before. But what a nice simple thing to do for someone to spread the Christmas spirit. To keep it going, Donna paid for the food for a car behind her in a different Jack in the Box drive thru. I decided this was a perfect thing for me to do. Simple and easy, and hopefully not too expensive.

On Christmas Eve Brynlee and I went to McDonalds. Of course I had to pick McDonalds since it's my favorite! We ordered a small soda, and when I got to the window to pay I told the man I wanted to pay for the car behind me. He looked at my kind of curiously at first, and then told me the man's total was $14. $14?! It was one man in a car, what did he order? I almost asked how much the car behind that one's total was. :) But I paid the $14, and booked it out of there. So awkward, I didn't need the man trying to thank me or something. Totally uncomfortable! As I was bolting away as fast as my car could take me, I saw the car behind me flash his lights to say thank you. Yay! I hope he keeps the train going and paid for someone else. I love Christmas time. Because people do things like that for each other, and it makes me so happy.

We had a great Christmas. That will have to be a whole different post in itself. Brynlee was spoiled rotten. Big surprise there!

I'm off this whole week, so I decided to run a stupid errand I've been dreading. For about 19 months. I never got a copy of Brynlee's birth certificate when she was born. She was born in LA County, and the only way to get a copy of it was to either fill out a form, get it notarized and mail it in. Or, to drive to downtown LA in person and get it there. Ugh. Neither of those are very appealing. Today I bit the bullet. I dragged Carla with me, and we drove to LA to get a copy. We only got lost about 10 times. That stupid city! I HATE driving down there! I'm so not a city driver. All the traffic and people stress me out. After a trip through the ghetto ( seriously, we were lucky to get out alive), china town and echo park we made it to our destination. In a very round about way. When I tried to pay for the birth certificate (because it costs $19. To get my own child's birth certificate) they told me they don't take Visa. They only take Master Card, Discover and Amex. Discover? Is that credit card even still out there? Who doesn't take Visa? Carla had to write a check for me because I didn't have my check book. What a mess. We finally made it home, after getting lost about 10 more times on the way home. Not that any of this is surprise to me. I practically get lost in my own house. So a trip to LA wouldn't be complete without a few wrong turns!


Audrey Spence said...

Yeah, I still needs Charlotte's birth certificate. I'm pretty awesome. Might as well wait to have the baby now then I can kill two birds with one stone. I think its lame you have to pick them up. Why don't they just mail them to you? Luckily where I have to go is just in town so it doesn't involve adventures like yours. Guess that's the good thing about living in Tooele county. We're the most populated part of the county so its all here!

racheyroy said...

Nice that you can get yours in Town Audry. We have to go to Salt Lake or pay $36 to get it mailed. Why should be pay for a piece of paper that says we had a child that we already paid for?

Anyway, I loved reading your story Liz. I felt the same way all Christmas. We were on our way home and I still had not done anything for anyone else. We were at McDonalds for Jocelyn and the man in front of us lost his $20 for his meal and had to tell them he could not pay for it. So while he turned away I covered the tab. I thought the lady at the register would just tell him because he was right. there. But she made me do it. Awkward. But he said he would pay it forward and that made me happy. Its a good feeling. Hopefully we do can keep it going all year!

Navy Life said...

I'm new at blogging and I absolutely love the way you have your page decorated. Very nice! I also really liked the "Great to be Grateful" post you did.