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Good Life Wednesday’s..Pelicans, Pools & A Loaf of Bread

Wed 23rd, Feb, 2011

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G’day!

Welcome to Good Life Wednesday’s!

Well, I tell you what, I feel most qualified to be making the most of the little things today.

You see, on the spur of the moment, after a school run which involved hysterics in the car because of forgotten homework and  a mummy who wouldn’t go back because she is trying to teach her tribe about consequences, I headed out for a coffee and a roam around to try and find some vintage things.   I really really need more vintage stuff in my life don’t I? ;-)

So I got myself a cappuccino and got my vintage treasure hunting head on…and the thrifting God’s were with me today for sure :-)

After that, at the dreaded mall, I had one of those shopping trips where you end up with so many good finds that it really is quite unbelievable…when you just flew in on your way home to buy some bread.

And getting to the point here, I rocked up at the bakery for some bread for tonight and right in front of me was a guy, mid ’50′s I’d say, fairly well dressed, clean and tidy who I had just noticed at the butcher’s right before (yep you read that right there are butchers and bakers and candlestick makers in Australian malls…best idea ever in my book)…I’d noticed him because he was calling out a friendly greeting to the butcher and holding a couple of baskets full or veggies…I love that kinda community regular thing…

So his turn at the bakers & he dipped down into his pockets and pulled out a handful of change…and asked the woman behind the counter how much the small block loaf was….$2.50 she said….he held the money out in his right hand, shifted it about a bit and peered at it….

“yes please I think I have got enough for that”

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But after she had picked it up, heading to the paper bags to wrap it, he was sorta scrambling with the change in one hand, and he realised he was 20 cents short…he told her

“oh no, ooops I don’t have enough”  he called over the counter in a friendly enough voice…

I was standing alongside by now, watching and awaiting my turn.

I went cold and cringed.

I was mortified.

Give him the bread I was willing the woman.  Please give him the bread.  Just give him the bread for 20 cents less.

“Oh well, never mind” he said, all cheerfully

“I obviously didn’t budget properly this week”

Oh dear I now felt like leaping over the counter, ripping the bread out of her hands and giving it to him.

She looked on awkwardly.

Give him the bread.

Dear Lord please give him the bread.

I stood there with my bags of finds….and almost visibly winced as I looked down at them…

a pair of the most divine pale pink & polka dot pj bottoms for the winter.

That I don’t need.

Two floaty, lovely, gathered dressy t-shirts, right up my alley.

That I don’t need.

Two gorgeous camisole tops, with little bows and polka dots.

That I don’t need.

A seagrass beachy , oh-my-goodness-I-love-it runner.

That I don’t need.

Three pairs of knickers with frills and gathers and ruffles.

That I don’t need.

A stripy boat neck top that fit like a dream.

That I don’t need.

A pair of airforce blue crochet/knit over the knee socks with a frill (oh my lordy-loo).

That I don’t need.

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All in this split second between her picking up the bread and him saying he hadn’t budgeted properly, a million thoughts rushed through my head.  Two years ago in the middle of the GFC when Mr BC went out on his own in search of a better work/life balance, we had two mortgages to pay, no income, three kids to look after and no help, never did I not have enough for a loaf of bread.  Fourteen years ago, a young newlywed when I was a stay at home mummy to one baby and we took a big gamble on a big house, never did I not have enough for a loaf of bread.  Ever since I had Honeymoon baby I have relished being able to stay-at-home with my kiddos which has meant sacrificing sometimes and budgeting, never did I not have enough for a loaf of bread.

I glanced down into my purse, hoping to high heaven for a 20 cent coin…by now the assistant had offered him an alternative that he could afford…a couple of bread rolls…

I grabbed the 20 cents…and going through my head was that this was a Pay-it-Forward opportunity, hopefully one day someone will help out one of my kiddos when they need it….but at the same time I was worried about causing a scene…it was kinda embarrassing…you know one of those situations where people cough cough and look the other way?  …what if he was offended?  what if he didn’t want to take any offers of help?

Well I took my chances…but I kinda wanted it to sound casual and cool and easy…that sorta went wrong when, with my pommie accent (that’s English if you are not an Australian), it just all came out a bit, well, weird

“there ya go mate, I’ll give ya the twenny cents”

He turned to me as if I was a very odd speaking like that…goodness knows what I sounded like…some sort of English girl trying to pull off the Aussie ‘mate’ with an American accent ;-)

Nah, nah, nah.  Don’t be silly love”  All the while still smiling, still happy, still jovial.

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‘C’mon” said I, “I’ve got 20 cents”

He still declined.

By this stage there was queue forming and the fuss that I had hoped wouldn’t happen started to happen.

I couldn’t pull out now though, I wanted him to have that loaf.

The assistant was in no-man’s land…she didn’t know what to do.  I was still WILLING her to pay for his d*mned bread later at the end of the day when they tallied up the till and give him the loaf.

So, no turning back now, I forced the issue, put the 20 cents on the counter.

She picked up the loaf again and wrapped it up.

“Haha” he said  ”I’ll have to pay you back the interest on that won’t I?!”  in a laughing manner

“Next time I see you at the shops, I’ll be giving you a dollar!”

“Ah well, I charge much more interest than that’ I said with a wink.

And all was well, I think and I hope.

I hope with all my heart that I didn’t make that guy feel like I was on that dreaded Good Samaritan path, that makes my skin crawl.

I hope he got it that I was on the Pay it Forward route.

And I hope that I will never not have enough for a $2.50 loaf of bread…but if I am ever in a queue at the bakers and I am 20 cents short.

I hope that guy is behind me.

And that’s it for my Good Life Wednesday story.  Have you ever had a Pay-it-Foward moment?  I have done a few of the payings forward (bought a coffee for the person behind me etc.) and I am sure I’ve reaped the benefit…I’d would love to hear your experiences, if you’ve got the time to leave me a comment today…

Happy Days…we are heading to another hot hot hot weekend Down Under

p.s. this post was supposed to be about my walk down to the ocean pool & pelicans…I guess you can work out how beautiful that was for yourselves..;-)


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86 Responses to “Good Life Wednesday’s..Pelicans, Pools & A Loaf of Bread”

  1. bj says:

    Been there…done that. :))
    Thanks so much for hosting, dear Sarah

  2. cielo says:

    I’m showing your lovely bedroom in our blog today ;) Come see!

    Cielo

  3. Barefoot Liz says:

    Sadly, I’ve been in that man’s shoes quite a number of times. It’s an awful feeling. I’m glad you stepped forward even though you were afraid of offending him. <3

  4. Sarah – you have a sweet, thoughtful soul, girlie. There is no better feeling in the world than being presented with the opportunity to pay-it-forward and make someone’s day a tad bit sunnier. ♥ My hubby and I love looking for different ways each day to make somebody smile – even it’s small! Bless you!

    xoxo laurie

  5. Maureen says:

    Hi Sarah!
    Yes, I fully have been in your shoes, a couple of weeks ago, same setting only in Switzerland, me paying after everybody looked the other way some guys groceries, it was almost closing time on a saturday evening, I couldn’t let him not have his groceries (was quite a bit more than 20 cents but that doesn’t matter). I also told him that it was a Pay it Forward thing, next time help someone else, he couldn’t believe what just had happened, seeing this is Switzerland and not (friendly) Australia.
    I couldn’t sleep, it’s the middle of the night here, and I just made a post I think can fit into your Good life Wednesday, so I will link it back to your blog. Enjoy the sunshine, wet snow here…
    Maureen

  6. mary says:

    lovely story. thanks for hosting-love your pictures, too!
    mary

  7. Jeannie says:

    I’ve been in a similar situation a number of times and just off handedly say here, you go and hand over the money.. If they protest, I just jokingly say you can help someone else some time in return. It is the type of situation which really makes one take stock of how much we have and how much we assume everyone has our good fortune. The sales clerk should have given it to him and put in the 20 cents herself…that’s what I would do.

  8. Jacqueline says:

    I would just like to bask in YOUR storytelling, Sarah. And take in the lovely pictures. Glad I stopped over.

  9. Deanne says:

    well done Sarah, I love the pay it forward philosophy!

  10. Such a simple but profound gesture. If we all supported each other in such ways, the world would be such a different place!

  11. Alice says:

    Sarah well handled. When I was younger (many, many moons ago)working behind the counters at a fast food joint everytime a little kid came in to get an icecream (yep we sold that too)and was just shy of the money, or an elderly couple would come in for a meal and were just shy of the total amount, really anyone who was just shy of the correct amount I would wink and give it to them then I would go to my wallet and add whatever amount was needed to make the transaction. No one knew, my till was always right at the end of the shift and I would always feel a little more cheered up(very dark times for me those days). Little did they know that these people were helping me more than I was helping them.

  12. Tammi says:

    Sarah I too am all for paying it forward, I think society could learn alot from that type of kindness…just recently I came across some cards in a magazine based on the whole theory of paying it forward…they are called ‘Kindness Cards’ from Wake up Sydney, you may have heard of them already.
    I ordered a set for my children, to show them that the simple act of showing kindness to someone in any form will not only add a spark to their day but to the person they have shown kindness too :)
    I am a true believer in that what goes around comes around!!
    xx

  13. Fiona says:

    Your story really touched my heart – So much so that I had to blog about it.

    Hugs – Fee X

  14. Jill says:

    Such a lovely story Sarah! I always like to give to those who are a bit short, or give my change to those who ask (unless they’re super creepy or something) because I believe there are angels all around and it might just be an angel testing my heart! ::Jill

  15. Kacey says:

    What a beautiful post, Sarah. I do my best to pay it forward every chance I get. Sometimes it’s the little things that make a big difference. I’m sure your thoughtfulness made a big impression on that gentleman..even if it was only 20 cents!

  16. Ann says:

    Your story touched me also, actually it brought tears to my eyes. I know what it has been like to watch every cent and only have enough to buy a half loaf of bread, many years ago now, but you never forget how fortunate you are to have the basics and beyond. I also have been behind someone and offered 50 cents, saying one day you can help someone. Kindness is free and we can all help each other. You write beautifully Sarah…

    • sarah says:

      oh Ann, I can’t tell you how fortunate I felt today walking back to the car…with my bag full of goodies…

      I am oh so lucky not to be watching every cent…and don’t I know it

      xx

  17. I would have done the same thing. Charmaine

  18. tami says:

    Sarah, that was a sweet encounter, I’d say. I do have a “pay it forward” moment, it happened to me, I was the one who needed to be “paid forward”. I once got a flat tire, and just made it into a mini-mart parking lot. My Dad was good about teaching all of us when we were kids but old enough to drive, to be able to change a tire on our own, without help in case we could not trust a stranger for help. Well anyway, I got out, got the jack, and started jacking up the car, and turning the bolts, I leaned onto the jack with all my might, and being a tiny little thing, it didn’t budge. The more I put my weight into it, the harder it became. Suddenly an older gentleman came to my rescue, and he insisted on helping me. He said, and I quote…” I was watching you from over there, and you’re trying to turn it the wrong direction, you’re actually tightening the bolt” Haha! Well suffice it to say, he did me a big favor, and I was back on the road in no time.
    I was so grateful and wanted to pay him, but he wouldn’t accept any money. A real Gentleman. Every now and then, you know, a Prince comes along to save us Damsels in Distress. Or…Us Damsels, can come along to help out a Prince now and then.

    • sarah says:

      lovely story Tami…there are some gentleman in the world

      and I love that your dad took the time to show you that…errm yeah I didn’t get that kinda parenting :-)

      sarahx

  19. Wow Sarah! That was a really touching story. Sometimes we forget the real important things in life and splurge like crazy when there are other things more worthy to spend on. Thanks for sharing your experience with us this Wednesday.
    -marie

  20. Madeline says:

    I too have been in this situation helping out someone with 10 cents here or there you would think the check out chick could help out from time to time. Especially with the old & young children not quite having enough. I don’t carry a lot of spare change around now with EFPOS but l keep some for parking meters. Also feel sorry for those who have to take items off the bill to pay for them.
    What a lovely story.

  21. Sherry says:

    Beautiful post today Sarah. Post of the heart. I went into a store some time ago. While getting my groceries I spotted a lady that I had heard was having a hard time. I went to the girl checking out (I am a regular in that store and they know me well) and told her when the lady checked out to tell her that her groceries had already been paid for. When I checked out they said she was overwhelmed with the thought that she did not have to pay for her groceries. She never knew it was me. LOved your post today!!! ~~Sherry~~

  22. Beautiful photos Sarah and a great story.The world would be just that bit nicer if everyone shared that attitude.
    I gave an eldery lady a ride on a recent 40 degree day. She was lost in the shopping centre carpark and looked like she was going to drop. She was very unsure of getting in the car (I could have been an axe wielding maniac), but got in anyway. After we found her car and I left her, I couldn’t help but think if that had been my Mum, would someone have given her a ride?
    I’d like to think they would.
    x Marnie

  23. Jeanette says:

    Lovely story Sarah. Thankyou for sharing. Hugs,

  24. carla says:

    What a beautiful act of kindness :o) xx

  25. Thanks for hosting! Your blog is so pretty!

  26. I’ve been there…and it always happens when I am carrying cash and coins with me. You see, I rarely carry money…only credit cards. I worry as well that the person will be offended if I offer a coin or bill but I always feel that if our roles were reversed, they would do the same and offer me the money.

    Deanna :D

  27. Christie says:

    Thanks for hosting the linky party! We once provided Christmas for a missionary family that couldn’t afford to have their own. It was January & we put the Christmas tree back up, decorated it, decorated with outdoor lights on the house, set the table for Christmas dinner with Christmas dishes, and had a tree full of wrapped presents for the whole family. They enjoyed it so much, but it was truly more of a blessing for us!

  28. momstheword says:

    Good for you! Many years ago my hubby was out of work and things were tight.

    A couple from our church gave us some money and a year later that same couple was having some financial difficulty as the husband was out of work. We were blessed to return the favor and give THEM some money!

  29. Ashy says:

    I have just popped your blog into my favs. Only having just become addicted to blog sites, yours is one of the first ones I have actually stopped to read. I mostly look at the pictures for inspiration. Actually it was your first couple of paras that got me in. I had to keep reading. What a lovely and thoughtful story. I still can’t believe the woman in the shop didn’t just give it to him. Thanks for the story it has brightned my day.

  30. Marcia says:

    Aw Sarah, that was a beautiful story…it just really made my day, or actually, in my case, my night. As I was reading it, I was thinking “Give him the loaf,” right with you!!! Beautifully written my friend :-)
    Blessings,
    Marcia

  31. Your blog and your posts are always such an inspiration. I am thrilled to be a part of your party for the first time. I am actually entering it twice :-) I do hope to see you over at My Dream Canvas. Take care Anu

  32. Patricia says:

    Yes Sarah, I had that happen last year. I was in Woollies supermarket at the checkout.
    A young woman before me, actually in a Woolworths Staff uniform, obviously heading home,
    buying a couple of pieces of fruit and a can of drink. The checkout girl asked for the amount, and she
    looked in her purse, then saying she didn’t have enough, and she said she wouldnit take the drink
    and she put it aside.

    I said I’ll pay for it, and she said Nooo. I asked how much it was and was told it was $2.50
    I insisted on paying for it. OMG she was ever so grateful. She said, Oh no-one have ever done
    that for me before.

    I just felt for her. It wasn’t for me. But I felt so lovely after, that I had made someone’s day.

    Good on you Sarah for stepping in. I am glad you did. :)

  33. Kate says:

    the world needs more people like you

  34. Barbara says:

    What a generous heart Sarah. Always follow the promptings of your heart.

  35. beautiful story…I always say what goes around comes around…pay it forward in a circle. I’m sure that gentleman appreciated your kindness. I would of done the same and have done it at work when someone is a few cents short. good on you.

  36. Isabella smith says:

    Good on yah from a Scot who is allways getting called a pom :):)

  37. Pauline says:

    Hi Sarah,
    thank you soooooo much for sharing that story…I am sure it happens a lot you know..I know it actually happened for me..but never talked about..what a sweet person you are..thanks again for the wonderful read..and thought provoking message it sends…wish there were more out there like you girl!!!
    cheers

  38. Paige says:

    I am loving the photos!

  39. Barbara says:

    So enjoyed your story, thanks for sharing.

  40. kim says:

    i am the same way sarah too whenever i see someone rifiling for change to pay and it seems they do not have enough i remember all to well being a young stay at home mom and didnt always have extra money for things but yet somehow by the grace of god and my frugal ways we always made it and i was blessed i always feel if you pay it forward and do something nice for someone it does come back to you!! way to go loving the beautiful sea pics as i am under 12 inches snow and 1 deg here in mich ughhhh

  41. A wonderful story. It takes so little for us to “come to the rescue” of someone in need. Nowadays, most people would be yacking on the phone or texting. Too busy to notice a cry for help. I am glad you were fully present and willing to reach out in that moment.

  42. Zosia says:

    The world is still a good place.
    When I moved from Poland to Canada 22 years ago, I arrived with one suitcase. When we rented the first apartment, we had only a few pieces of furniture. We didn’t have a table to eat on. A neighbour gave us an old table that was painted an ugly brown, but actually had a very nice shape. I painted the table white and we used it for a few years in the kitchen. Later I used it as my desk.
    When I decided to move back to Poland recently, I knew that I would not be taking all my furniture with me. I was going to sell it, but then I remembered that my neighbours were a family of recent immigrants from Slovakia, a couple with 3 kids. I gave them a few bookshelves for their boys’ room. From one European immigrant to another, for a good start in Canada.
    …and the little brown-turn-white table? It’s currently somewhere in the middle of the ocean, being shipped from Canada to Poland :-).

  43. One of the most touching blog posts I’ve had the pleasure to read in a very long time. I’m sitting at the office secretly reading blogs while I pretend to work. Now I think I need a trip to the ladies room to fix my eye makeup and get this damn lump out of my throat.

    Thank you for sharing this little story that helps put everything into perspective.

  44. Shar Y says:

    Wonderful post today. I love what you did. I used to be better at paying it forward; and this post was a wake up call for me. In my defense, I was conned a few years ago when some folks asked for money for bus fare because they were having car trouble. It was cold, and dark and they had a baby with them. I gave them a few dollars. Then I went down the street to pick up some take out dinner. When I came out to my car, there they were again, next to their car, which they had driven down to new place. They put their sad story on me again, not recognizing me. It had only been 20 minutes! Anyway, it kind of jaded me. But, today is a new day! Thanks, and lovely photos, as usual.

  45. hi there- love your blog. new follower and linky up to Good Life Wednesday! laura
    http://imnotatrophywife.com

  46. Simone says:

    Beautiful pictures! I’m a new follower and linker upper. Have a great day.

  47. marylou says:

    I don’t think there are adequate words to add to this story, simply know I have a huge smile and you have made my day
    by being the Sarah we have all come to know and love, albeit thru the “internets”…AND karma will return
    to you in all GOOD things for beach cottage and crew ((*_*))

    **smiles**

  48. Camilla says:

    Growing up, we’ve had it very rough sometimes. Rough enough where we have not been able to afford even a loaf of bread at times so it warms my heart right through what you did. Though, it is always so hard accepting help from kind people even if you need it, because it is a bit of a pride thing. Not being able to afford a loaf of bread…I’m so happy I’ve got some kind of income of my own now even if it is little so we don’t end up like that again.

  49. indiansummer says:

    I love hearing about things like this. It’s so easy to just be kind to each other. Great post!

  50. Helen T says:

    good on you sarah, to show kindness and caring doesn’t cost a lot, it takes creativey and the result is everyone involved (the man, you, shop assistant, and other customers waiting in the queue) probably left the shop feeling a whole lot better about the world! Love it

  51. Cyle Lewis says:

    Sarah, it has been a pleasure to find your blog. I find that today’s post on my blog goes along quite well with this pay it forward theme. I think you are a kindred spirit for sure. I also live near the beach in a cottage, I have often been guilty of ” complaining” of living in a house too small and always needing repair. However, I am learning to be grateful and content for what I have, through the process I have grown to love my beach cottage…thus, any blogs with the word ” cottage” in them become instantly dear to my heart. Thanks for inspiring me with your story:)

  52. I really enjoyed reading your story, first because it’s a beautiful one and also because I love it when post don’t go where we want them to go, but kind if follow the path thay want to follow….
    Thanks for hosting your party!

  53. Norell says:

    I try to “pay it forward” whenever I have a chance. Whether it is as small as helping someone with a stroller by holding the door for them (I remember those days so well), letting someone with one item go ahead of me in the grocery check-out line or simply an understanding smile for someone who appears to be having one of those down days. I am the person who always has $1.00 to hand to the person asking for help – perhaps they don’t really need it, but I feel if they are in a situation that puts them in a position where they have to approach a total stranger for a small amount of money – they can have my $1.00 and my love. I hope that they will know someone cares about them. I don’t need the one more Diet Coke I would buy with a small amount of change. They might need that small amount to eat. I’ve had people let doors slam in my face, race me to the check-out aisle so they can be first, ignore me when I could use just one smile – I know someday, when I am in need someone will step forward.

  54. Els Manning says:

    oh i so feel you there! While back a lady had this ( ugly) sweater, and was trying to talk her husband into it. He just glared at her like she was stupid. By the way these people looked there was not much money in their home. Just guessing. Not judging. So she asked the man again and he told her loudly no. So i gave the lady the money. 40 u.s. $. But her humiliation was obvious. I really did not want to make it a scene. So it was done quietly. And also not trying to sound like a saint. We have been through a job less period. Had to be appreciating hand outs. And it stinks. But i know that i had the money at that moment. And i hope that the lady liked her sweater. I did feel good after doing it. Also last summer we saw a homeless man walk down the street. So we bought a bag with burgers. And my kids handed it to him as we passed him on the street. Was cool, because my son actually jumped out of the car and handed him the bag with food. I wished i was RICH! Oh the fun i’d have!

  55. teapotrose says:

    “No good deed goes unpunished” is one of my husband’s favorite sayings. Many years ago, I was in the grocery store in line behind a young woman who was paying for her groceries with food stamps. As some may know, there are certain items such as cleaning supplies, etc., that can only be paid for with cash. The clerk rang her up and said the young woman was 5 cents short. Unfortunately, this clerk was also of the type that was particularly snippy to anyone paying with food stamps. The young woman’s cheeks flamed red, saying her companion was in the car with the children, and glancing back to the line that was forming, obviously confused about what to do and extremely embarrassed. I happened to have a handful of change and said quietly, “Here ya go!” and tossed a nickel onto the conveyor belt. Well, never in my life have I tossed a coin and had it land on it’s edge but this time it did! It rolled down the conveyor and slipped down the crevice between the belt and the counter. Then, instead of just saying, “I’ll get it later,” the clerk got down on her knees looking for it and another clerk came over and started talking to the first clerk about it. By now, I am mortified as well as the young woman and I’m not sure how we ever got out of there! The rest of the incident is a painful blur in my memory, LOL. As my husband loves to quote, “no good deed goes unpunished!”

  56. Annette says:

    Great story, thanks for sharing. All those thoughts would have gone through my mind too and I would have made the same decision as you. Makes us greateful for what we have. Thanks for sharing.

  57. Anne says:

    well, i know that sometimes it’s harder to be on the receiving end than the paying it forward end…

  58. Kirsty says:

    I’ve never had any really clear cut moments with things like that. Only people come up and asking for money, generally I usually turn them down. I’ve been asked countless times for change for the bus knowing full well they’re lying, needing money for smokes. Generally in this case they’re just young bogans looking for someone stupid enough to give in to their whining.
    I think what you did is great though, I think you saved the situation!

  59. Sallie says:

    My daughter and her husband finally had saved enough for a down payment on a new car and had decided to keep their old car instead of using it for a trade in so they would both have a car. Someone they knew only slightly asked if they might buy it from them. Knowing this young couple had been down on their luck, daughter and husband quickly decided to give it to them. When I asked her why she had given away their second car, she explained the other couple’s situation. I told her that it sounded like something her dad would do. She laughed and replied, “I thought so too. That’s exactly why I did it.”

  60. Laura says:

    Hi Sarah… meant to reply this morning, but got side tracked… my hubby is the best at paying it forward… even though in grad school and forking out a packet to pay for it, and supporting me and the kids… he works many hours for free or at a much much reduced rate (same rate as he charged when fresh out of college… now a PhD) helping families with autistic kids… yeah we could do with the money, but he says he just wants to help… I look at it, that, while we are not rich in money, we are blessed in every other way… love the pay it forward attitude! Lx

  61. Melinda says:

    It’s such a fine line sometimes as to whether helping would be the best thing to do and to do it without offending. I have to admit that while most always it goes well I have had an ackward moment or two when by trying to help I actully made things worse. I think the important thing is that our heart is in the right place when we do the “pay it forward” deed and then it is all good in the end…

  62. Jan Quigley says:

    Yes I had a pay it forward moment some years ago. I was in the chemists & the lady in front didn’t have enough to pay for cough medicine for her child, she was a couple of dollars short. I simply offered the difference & I’m glad to say she took it & thanked me, sincerely. The chemist’s assistant was a young girl & looked a bit lost so i didn’t blame her for not jumping in.
    It was nice being able to do something so simple that helped someone out.
    I would have done exactly the same as you & been beet red, lol.

  63. Maria says:

    Sarah, I really enjoyed reading this post…it certainly struck a chord with me as I also wrote of an experience I had just recently which was a little similar. The link is below if you want to take a peek!
    Best wishes!
    http://thenextstage-maria.blogspot.com/2011/02/giving-benefit-of-doubt.html

  64. Jodi says:

    I would consider my self to be a pretty average middle class person with a husband, a baby and a mortgage now days but along the way to here there have been days when I have had to choose between bread and milk or days where I have had to count the price of the groceries as I put them into the basket to make sure I had enough to eat and enough to pay for it. It can be mortifiying to think you can’t afford to do these simple things but I also try to pay it forward the weeks we do have enough. Buying tickets in charity raffles (or just giving them the money), Paying that little bit that the person at the checkout can’t find in their purse, and on one occasion slipping into the newsagent and buying a 10 ride bus ticket for a young person who was begging for change to get home (he wasn’t after cash and he was beside himself with gratitude when I handed him the ticket quitely as I passed him on my way to the car.

    Even when we don’t have everything we would like it pays to remember that there are people with so much less than that.

  65. Angie says:

    I love paying it forward and have done it from time to time over the years. A short story here. One Friday evening daughter, hubs and I were walking up to our fav Japanese restaurant. It was extremely cold and windy even for winter in Florida.We came upon a man diggin through a trash can out front. Hubs grumbled..daughter looked sad and I kept walking. While waiting to be seated I noticed daughter was not with us….”where is she?” Looking around, bathroom? nope..looking out the large glass front of the building I saw her across the sidewalk buying coffee and danish. “What is she doing in Starbucks” I asked, hubs grumbles….I watch my daughter who is afraid of her shadow and a poor college student walk up to the homeless man and hand him the food. He smiled..she smiled….I cried..

  66. teapotrose says:

    Wonderful story, Angie! Every once in a while, we see someone along the road holding a sign, “will work for food, gas, etc. or need help, etc.” People say that they are scammers working in gangs. I don’t care, I’d rather give them a buck and risk them being a scammer than risk not helping someone who really is in need.

  67. -Chartreuse- says:

    What a great story! Thanks for sharing…Hearing a heartwarming story like that always leaves me smiling… :)
    Thanks for the link-up!
    -Chartreuse-
    http://luxyliving.blogspot.com/

  68. Kathy R says:

    Oh Angie, you have done your lifes work right there by bringing up your beautiful daughter to be that person. you should be so proud!
    And Sarah this is the first time that i have found your blog and what a wonderful initiation – what a beautiful story. I do things like that because I always think that I hope someone out there is looking sfter my loved ones when I cant. I love that saying “Be kinder to people that what you need to be becuase everyone has some kind of struggle going on thats not apparent on the surface.”

    • Angie says:

      @ Kathy I wish I could take all the credit for that…it had alot to do with mission work to homeless when a preteen-young adult, making her donate toys every year to under priviledged children before Christmas. And most of all ALOT of prayers. My worst fear would be to have raised a selfish better than you type child…I am blessed for sure.

  69. teapotrose says:

    Kathy R., I have never heard that saying but I surely do like it. Sarah, this whole series of comments starting with your story has really made me feel a whole lot better about people in general. It’s a relief to know there are so many kind people out there in a world that sometimes seems a little harsh.

  70. Hi Sarah, You made my day today, I love hearing how you helped out that man and I know if I was the clerk behind that counter I would have given him the loaf of bread and paid for all of it myself. Our family often helps out others that are going through a tough time, it can be someone we know OR a complete stranger. My husband has helped out men in our community that are out of work by finding things around our home that really don’t need fixing but we hire them anyway to do the “work” so they don’t feel like we are giving them a hand out. You have to know when someone is going to feel embarrased or hurt if you out right offer them money, it’s a balancing act. My daughter is overly kind to strangers and anyone she sees that is less fortunate than her. Even while she has been without her own income and struggling to make ends meet she helps out. One night while driving down the street in the dead of winter on a very cold, snowy night she spotted an older women curled up in a snow bank. She stopped and took the women into her car and brought her to a local hotel and paid for a room for her and bought her some food. No questions were asked of the women’s situation, my daughter felt if the women wanted to share with her she would. I was never more proud of my daughter although she has done many things like this before and since that night. She has taken out car loans for friends she has just met and saw a need and everyone of them has always paid back the loan. Having a car has changed two of these women’s life by giving them a chance. One has gone on to get a college education and the other has turned her life around, got a great job and is also going to college. It really is worth going out on a limb for someone in need but not enough of us are willing to take such a risk. I am so proud of my daughter and she has taught me many things in my life and I am a better person for having her, my husband and I are truly blessed.
    Hugz,
    Kim

  71. I actually did have a “pay it forward” moment just recently.

    I dreamed of having a yellow lab pup for YEARS. I had his name picked out for YEARS before I got him. When my girls molved out to go to college and my son started high school (after homeschooling him all his life) I was all alone during the day. I had also recently lost my dog, and most of my friends. So my son talked me into looking at some puppies, but I didn’t have enough money. Not only did the lady selling them knock some money off, but then my son offered me his savings account.

    Enter into my life “Prince Charming”! The most gorgeous sweet yellow lab ever.

    Just recently Prince Charming fathered a batch of 9 yellow lab puppies. My friends husband told me my friend would love one, and her birthday was coming up. But when he asked me how much they were, the cost was too high. Now the puppies weren’t mine, so I couldn’t drop the price. But when Prince fathered the pups the deal was I get pick of the litter or 200 dollars. So instead of taking the 200 dollars, I took my friend with me to pick out a puppy for her birthday. She hasn’t been my friend long ( about two years now), but she and some other ladies have been very kind to me, very loving, and took me into their hearts when I didn’t have any friends left.

    It made me SO HAPPY to see her walk away with this beautiful puppy snuggled up against her face. It’s something I’ll never forget, and never regret.

  72. Alex Hughes says:

    Sarah, it was lovely to read your story and I am sure he now thinks fondly of the nice young lady that helped him buy his bread. These sorts of actions restores some faith in the good of human kind.

    I recently was at our local supermarket behind my friends parents, and they don’t really know me but she turned around as her hubby was unpacking the trolley and said hi. As the teller just finished putting her groceries through I could see her searching through her bag with a look of panic coming across her face. She looked up at her hubby and said “I don’t have my wallet” and with distress he replied “I don’t have mine either”. She had left it at home and he didn’t bring his as usual. I quickly stepped in and said that I would be happy to pay for their groceries to save putting them back. It was all done fast and simple with no fuss, thankfully. And they returned the small amount of $25 to my friend immediately to give back to me. I too thought that I hope one day when I am in that situation, or my kids are in that situation, that someone will come to our rescue.

  73. Joe says:

    amazing :) these are the kind of experiences that make you feel human…
    here every time i go to crowded places like the bus-stations etc. I find at least a couple of really poor people trying to sell stuff which would be of no use, I find blind people on the street guided by their spouses trying to entertain the people there for a couple of cents or so! I help them , but I feel helpless too…How much can we help? What can change this?

  74. Allie Schmidheiser says:

    LOVE this! Thanks for sharing! Please stop by and say hello at

    http://www.mrsschmidheiser.blogspot.com

    Thanks!