One of the greatest gifts in life is the simple act of giving to others. “Giving” doesn’t have to be a big act or a large monetary sum. Sometimes, the simplest acts of kindness go a really long way, and keep on giving.
These days, it seems like we are bombarded with reminders “to give”. Checking out at stores, almost every place asks if you’d like to donate to this or that charity. Social media bombards us with ‘GoFundme’ requests or charitable organizations we can join or support. All of that’s great, and goes to worthy causes.
However, what warms my heart the most aren’t big, organized charitable acts; it’s everyday gestures from one kind heart to another.
”I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel”
Families are all so “busy” these days. Everyone works harder and longer, it seems, and the world’s in such a hurry.
There’s a Facebook group open to those who live in my town. Typical posts ask for recommendations for places to go or for services locally- that sort of thing. It’s also a great way for residents to connect and see what kind of new things are going on in town. Recently, a post on the thread caught my eye. Have you ever heard of a “Giving Platter”?
Karina Brasil Riccitelli is a very busy mom of three little ones. She and her family moved to our town from a larger city. The family was trying to get boxes from their move unpacked, her husband was working and she was expecting- about to give birth to twins. Karina was welcomed by new neighbors who reached out to lend a helping hand. One neighbor brought over a bottle of non-alcoholic wine, while another mowed the exhausted couple’s yard.
Karina and her husband were so touched by the random acts of kindness. They wanted to pass kindness on, but weren’t sure how until a recent road trip. While in a store in Massachusetts, they came across a “Giving Plate”. Karina purchased it, not knowing what she would do with it, or who she would give it to.
Back home, Karina thought on how and what she wanted to do with the platter. She knew she wanted to give it to someone she didn’t know yet. She decided not to do sweets, as often times sweets go to the children in a family, or people may be diabetic. She also thought the platter should be gluten-free. She mentioned the platter to a good friend, Debra Cabral, and asked for her advice. Debra owns a coffee shop in a nearby town, and offered to do a cheese and meat plate for Karina at no charge. “That way, we could give it to anyone, as everyone loves cheese and meat”, Karina says.
She dropped off the platter, put the twins down for a nap, and at 3:00 picked the platter back up. The result was a beautiful spread.
“But I still wasn’t sure who to give it to”, Karina added.
Karina enclosed a card to go with the Giving Plate. She didn’t want the recipient family to feel pressured to pass the platter on by a certain date. Adding that stress would take away from the joy. She hopes that if and when the platter is passed on, that the family will write their name and date on the bottom of the plate so there will be a record of where the platter has been. Her only stipulation is in the hopes that the plate stay in town.
The family decided to go to a house that they often drive past on their way home. The homeowners decorate for every holiday, and their decorations always make the Brasil Riccitelli family smile.
They drove to the house, knocked on the door, and crossed their fingers that someone was at home. The homeowner’s grandfather answered the door, and was greatly surprised. Karina left it anonymously, but later the recipient reached out with a heartfelt thank you on the Facebook group page. Karina added that it is nice to know who the platter is from. It’s nice to connect, and these days, it’s often hard for adults to meet and connect with neighbors. Many comments followed on the very heartwarming post.
”A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle.” -James Keller
Karina says as long as the platter is moving, it doesn’t matter how long it takes or where it goes, and that even if it is never passed on, “it’s serving its purpose. They will see it and remember.”
There are “Giving Plates” available on Amazon and other places, but really this idea could be done with any plate or platter. The love is not in the plate!
What I like best about this idea is the act of doing something kind, for someone you may not know at all, with no expectation of anything in return. That’s the best kind of gift we can give. It makes this big, crazy world a little bit kinder, a little bit gentler…a reminder to be thankful.
Leave me a comment so I know you stopped by…perhaps share a time when you’ve had someone do a random act of kindness that made your day. Wishing everyone a Happy Thanksgiving!
Until Next Time…
Farmgirl Hugs, Nicole