Yes, It Really DOES Matter

[Previous Rural Farmgirl, June 2010 – January 2012]

Do you think that giving someone a genuine compliment or holding the door for the next guy can change your life? What about listening quietly and peacefully to an important story someone has to tell? Or maybe it’s just giving a big smile to the person who’s directing traffic during road construction… These situations all have something in common – a kind response. Kindness. It’s a way of looking at life that requires changes that are so little yet the rewards, for everyone involved, are so big…
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  1. Heidi says:

    I love your post. Thanks for the positive energy, it seems that many look at the glass as half empty, I like to see it as always half full.

    My favorite quote " Attitude is the mind’s paintbrush, it can color any situation" Loring Forcier

    Thanks for the other two quotes, I love them. I will now go tell my kids how great they are as sometimes I think I am too hard on them and set my expectations too high.

    Good Karma to you, Heidi

  2. Denise says:

    Your words of kindness came at just the right time.The farm that I work on and have been so proud to be a part of is up for sale.Being the oldest farm in America still owned be the same family since 1632 you can imagine the price is out of my reach.After reading your post the light went on and I realized this isn’t about me and the right thing to do is be there for my friend as her world and family history is being brought to an end by a brother who believes the time of the family farm has come to an end.Thank you for "waking me up"

  3. Jan says:

    Yes…attitude/focus is everything, isn’t it? I’ve been thinking about that for awhile; maybe in a little different way: that life really isn’t all about me, but rather is about Him. Returning evil for evil in relating to people or circumstances only serves to perpetuate the evil. But changing my focus to " how can I respond right now (not react!) in a way that will please the Lord? " has made a huge difference, and seems to me to break at least my small part of a negative chain.
    Thanks for your thoughts on the similar subject, and for seeking to make the world better, even if it takes a bit of unrewarded effort. God sees it and takes note, I’m sure.

  4. Aunt Jenny says:

    What an awesome post. I agree…. a little kindness goes such a long way! YOU are one of the most naturally kind people I have ever met so I KNOW it works!!!
    have a great weekend!

  5. nameVictoria says:


  6. Cherry says:

    I, also love to read your posts–this one was wonderful. I’ve read it twice and plans on asking my girls to read it–it reminds me of paying it forward–what a difference a smile makes. Thanks for the positive attitude.

  7. Lorrie says:

    Thank you so much for reminding me that my small troubes can easily be put aside for a few moments to give a stranger a smile or hold a door for someone or slow down enough to radiate gratitude for all the blessings in my life. This message never gets old.

  8. sue says:

    I don’t know who originally said it, but my parents and grand parents always said "kindness is Its own reward" How very true.

  9. Tammy says:

    A beautiful post. Thank you for the reminder. I try to ‘shelter’ others… well, most of the time. But you’ve reminded me it’s worth the extra, tiny bit of effort *all* of the time 😉

  10. Cindy says:

    When we plant the seeds of kindness, we harvest the fruits of the Spirit….."love, joy, peace, patience and KINDNESS and then goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self control" your message is so needed today!

  11. Libby,
    I love to read your posts, and this one especially touched my heart, as it is something that I’ve been thinking about a lot myself recently. My family and I are in the hospitality business, so we are in touch with the public 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We see human nature in all its possible forms. 99% of our guests are the most delightful folks you’d ever want to meet. The 1% that isn’t, can really have an impact on your (and everyone else’s) day. Conversely, we see people check in who are hot and bothered, may have been driving in traffic and who are bringing all sorts of mental baggage with them. As an innkeeper, I love to watch them unwind and let the cares of the world just melt away over the course of their stay. All it takes, as you say, is a smale, a kind word and a caring, receptive ear. We do not need to travel halfway across the world to make a difference … we can change the world exactly where we are, with just a smile. Keep up the wonderful writing, Libby. It is very inspiring. –Cathi (The Mountain Farmgirl)

  12. Carol Samsel says:

    What a positive and uplifting post. I try hard to be a positive person but sometimes I need a gentle reminder. Thanks for the post and the words of wisdom.

  13. Debbie says:

    This was a fantastic post! No way you could strike out looking for inspiration in Mary Jane’s " Eachother" section either! I agree… it’s fabulous and certainly at the heart of what a " farmgirl" truly is… KIND AND GENEROUS….I read a book right at the first of the year that motivated me much in the same way. It was written by Dr. Dwayne Dyer…( maybe he’s a farmboy at heart? ) Anyway, his book the Power of Intention, LEARNING HOW TO CO- CREATE YOUR LIFE…speaks along these same lines…and inspired me to write about it too!
    We can never have too much kindness in the world…

    I’ll share it with you all here!

    Enjoy! and Thank you " kindly" for this wonderful post today!


  14. Reba says:

    I have found that when I meet someone who is especially kind, be it in the grocery store or where ever, I remember that person more when I see them again. But if the person "growls" about everything, I soon forget them when I leave. Kindness does truly leave a footprint on ones life!

  15. Marcia says:

    The smallest gesture of kindness becomes great when we release it from ourself. Surprise someone or something with a Random Act of Kindness, but beware, it is contagious!!!! 🙂

  16. mellee says:

    what a lovely post on how we should treat others like we ourselves want to be treated.

    these are all such simple techniques to create kindness in ours–and others–lives. i think in the hustle-bustle of day to day life we tend to forget them, or put them aside in the hurry that has become our lives.

    i know my family and i have been going through a very difficult financial time, and it is easy to become bogged down in how tough it is for us. thank you for the reminder that no matter what is occurring is our lives, there is always room for kindness.

  17. Nancy Murray says:

    I have taken a bright marker and written the word "shelter" on a paper which is taped to the back of the bathroom door. It is a reminder, when I’m sitting still anyway!, to think about your post and adjust my perspective before returning to the stage of life. Thanks for your insights.

  18. Patricia Yellename says:

    As the saying goes "Timing is every thing in life",and your post was just what I needed. You gave me a lift, and I will make an effort to pass your thoughts along in my daily life. I feel good already!!

  19. Bonnie says:

    Libby, There must have been divine interference in you not having the right milk and your cheese making not working. 🙂 This post on kindness surely resonated with many, me included. Thanks so much for addressing a much needed element in today’s world.

  20. Tammie says:

    I love reading all of your posts, and this one will be one of my favorites. (Just think, if it was the poster incident that inspired the post, what a lovely outcome to something that was probably a negative experience.)
    I love reading all of the farm girl posts for this very reason. They are all so positive and leave me feeling good all day. It is kind of like reading Chicken Soup for the soul.
    The picture you posted of your sweet little boys is priceless. I love the brotherly love so evident there.

    I just started working at a large chain store as a second job, and on the weekends my boss has scheduled me for 9 hours each day, giving me an hour lunch. I am really enjoying the job however I will say that after working all week as well that does make for a bit of a long day. After work I spent another hour grocery shopping since I was there anyway and as I stood in line I was ahead of a young man and woman. Another register opened up and this young man didn’t say a word, he just made a mad dash for the register with his buggy. I’ll just say it’s a good thing I hadn’t moved out of line yet or there might have been a collision of sorts… 🙂
    The people around us were looking at him and looking at me with a look that said "wow".
    I was in a really good mood and let it roll off my back, and ended up blessed in the process. I hadn’t met this cashier yet and she was tired, really looking forward to getting off work, and seemed like she just needed to talk. I enjoyed meeting a new co worker that I might not have met if it hadn’t been for this incident.
    I remember how busy life was when my kids were little. It seemed the work was never ending and time nearly non existant so I just want you to know that I appreciate the time you take to write your blog here. I truely love it and look forward to each post!
    Have a wonderful day.

  21. Donna Watkins says:

    Libby, I am new to the Rural Farmgirl Blog, but I already love it. How true that one act of kindness can change your life or raise your awareness. Many years ago, as I was leaving a department store, a young woman held the door for me as I hurriedly rushed through it (my mind on my next 3 stops). Just out side the door, I heard her say "THANK YOU"! It stopped me in my tracks and I looked back. Her expression was a mixture of humor, humbleness, and just a little indignant. I was so embarrassed and couldn’t find the right words to say to her, so I just lowered my head and scurried on out to my car. But, it changed me forever. To this day, I never fail to say thank you when someone holds a door for me. In turn, I try very hard to not be in such a hurry that I can’t find time to hold the door for others – and when I do, I always see that woman’s face. It is tucked away in my little book of Greatest Gifts and Life Lessons along with the quote from Gomer Pyle on The Andy Griffith Show "My mamma always said, it only takes a moment to courteous". I look forward to more Farmgirl wisdom.

  22. mindy says:

    Beautiful… all of you.. this post and all these comments just made so much sunshine in my day.. thank you

  23. Brenda says:

    I just got around to reading your blog and I love it. How right you are, Just a little kindness helps the world go round. Today I was driving back from picking up 4 turkey sand 1 silkie chicks in my full size van which sits up higher than a car. Waiting at a stoplight in 2 lanes of traffic, I looked to my left and saw a baby, probably about 2 months old facing the back, crying his eyes out. His little hands were shaking in front of his face, and I felt so sorry for him. Two women were sitting in the front seat, I’m sure just knowing that he would stop eventually. Well, I looked at him for a second or two, wishing there was something I could do, and he looked right at me, through 2 car windows and some space, this little baby, and his eyes met mine, and he stopped crying, he even shook a little like a baby will do who has been crying for awhile, and just looked at me. I continued to smile at him and he looked at me; and then the light turned green, but my day was changed for good. A very precious moment.

  24. Jessie Mae says:

    This is a great blog. Can you imagine what the world we live in would look like if everybody who could, did? If everybody who could donate money to charity, did…if everybody who could volunteer, did…if everybody who could help, did…if everyone who could smile, did?

  25. Regina says:

    Gracious, what wonderful advice, and so simple to carry out!
    A wonderful (best) friend taught me to see the beauty in God’s creation and to focus on it. If we focus on kindness, it will grow. Thank you for sharing such a beautiful post! Would you mind if I post the two quotes (from Plato and the Irish proverb) on my blog? I can link them back here if you would like.
    Sincerely and God bless.

  26. LaRoyce says:

    I love the idea that acts of kindness are a "shelter". I truly enjoyed this column, as I do all of them. And I pray for your little boy’s health.

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You Have an Auntie Mame…

[Previous Rural Farmgirl, June 2010 – January 2012]

…I have an “Auntie Margaret.”

I’d like you to meet a friend – two friends, actually. When I first moved into this town, coming up on twelve years ago (my, how time flies!), I met Margaret. And just recently, I met Kate. I love these two gals individually, but I had no idea how they’d get along with each other – you know how it can be when friends of friends meet. They’re very different – Margaret is ninety years old; Kate is eight. Margaret is one tough old farmgirl; Kate has only been working on the land for about 4-5 years. Well, it turns out that these two are fast friends – not only that, but when they’re together, they’re a force to be reckoned with. Margaret is my farmgirl mentor, friend and “auntie.” Kate is my horse. C’mon over and say, “Hello!”…

Continue reading

  1. Hannah says:

    What a wonderful story!
    Thank you for sharing! It has put a giant smile on my face!


  2. JESSICA says:

    Your soooo lucky to have a special person like Margaret in your life!!!! And to hear first-hand all that history of a long life being lived! Awesome for your boys too. Most of us just get to read about these things when our grandparents etc have already passsed years ago! Enjoy!

  3. What a lovely story; I hung on every word. I had an old friend once similar to Margaret. His name was Ariel, and he lived next door to us for the five years we lived in Idaho. I learned alot from him despite his initial crusty manner- how to cut and piece a quilt, how and what to garden in the Bear Lake Valley, and how to “make do” in a remote town.

    I hope you’ll share more of your friendship with Margaret … and Kate, too. Good luck on the riding lessons. I’ve never ridden bareback, but do prefer Western to English. Good on you!

    Cathy K
    Murray, UT

  4. althea says:

    What a nice story, it brought tears to my eyes. I also have horses, so I understand the enjoyment you get from just being around them. Good luck with your riding lessons.

  5. Sandi says:

    You are truely blessed to have such a wonderful woman by your side. I can imagine everything you will learn from her. But you yourself are wonderful too. Enjoy the ride!

  6. Margaret Beck says:

    What a wonderful story. We should all be so fortunate to have someone like Margaret (and Kate) in our lives.

  7. Nora Donnell says:

    Loved the story. Reminded me of my "Aunt Ruth". She could do anything too and lived to be 94.

  8. meredith says:

    Hi! I loved your story about you and Margaret! One comment I will pass on, and only because as a farmgirl I know you have plenty of common sense- PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE invest in an approved riding helmet and WEAR IT EVERY TIME you get on your horse! I have been a riding instructor (dressage specifically) most of my adult life and a competitive rider even longer- I never ride without one and I trust my animals as much as I can knowing they ARE animals and as such, can be unpredictable. A very famous dressage rider named Courtney King-Dye (who has ridden on our Olympic team) recently suffered a major head injury (Think COMA) riding her horse in the arena, at the WALK- he took a small stumble and off she went- she very nearly died- just an example of how easily it can happen. As a farmgirl you have many people counting on you and your well being- enjoy the daylights out of your horse and your lessons but PLEASE get and wear a helmet- the least expensive ones can be had for less tha $30- a small price to pay. Farmgirl hugs- Meredith

  9. Brenda says:

    You are blessed with the friendship of a woman that can show you a picure of the past but be there to help you now and in the furture. My mother is 80 and sometime when she talks about the past it is like reading a book you don’t want to put down. And of course the love a horse can be a blessing in itself we have eight horses that we love. They are more like pets now than anything but that is okay with us.

  10. Nancyname says:

    It is wonderful that you have a frame of reference that allows you to open your heart to people who are don’t get inside "the box" and that you share that experience to help all of us to do the same. I want to vote on your wearing a proper riding helmet every time you get on that beautiful paint! Think about head injury trauma for a few minutes and you will probably agree with us.

  11. Kat Morton says:

    I truly enjoy your posts. I totally agree with your thoughts on so many people counting on you! Enjoy.

    I also have a blog to share:

  12. Shery says:

    What a blessing…both ways!

  13. amelia says:

    do you mind sharing her? i want a margaret.

    and i love you for seeing past all the rough edges to such a quality person and friend! you rock!!

  14. Kate says:

    Another great story! I so look forward to your blogs!
    Keep them coming!

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