Best Ways To Pay It Forward

One of my hopes is to be kind and raise a kind child. By kind, I mean compassionate, thoughtful, and empathetic. I want Henley to take care of herself, her things, and others. I asked her today, “How do you show you’re kind?” and she responded with a big smile, and then told me, “I share my dinosaur.” I’d say we’re doing a-okay for a 3-year old, right?

To keep it going, here’s our checklist for putting good vibes into the world.

Taking care of our Earth

  • Learn to reduce, reuse, recycle. Our favorite way to reuse is to turn would-be trash into art.
  • Bring our own bags to the grocery store.
  • Start composting and make it a family affair to build the compost bin.
  • Clean up trash from our neighborhood park.
  • Plant a vegetable garden, or a even a tree.

Taking care of our furry friends

  • Take the Meatless Mondays challenge.
  • Leave a bucket of tennis balls at a nearby dog park.
  • Give a pup some TLC. Offer to walk a friend’s dog, volunteer at a local animal shelter, or sign-up to be a foster family.
  • Create a shelter for the stray cats in our neighborhood.
  • Snag a membership to the Austin Zoo to show support for the animal sanctuary while creating family fun.

Taking care of our fellow humans

  • Bring school supplies or flowers to a teacher.
  • Donate old books to Free Little Library, a cafe, a preschool, or a local church.
  • Volunteer! Here’s a list of kid-friendly places for volunteering.
  • Have a bake sale, lemonade stand, car wash, or garage sale and let my little one donate to her favorite cause.
  • Make random acts of kindness customary and whimsical. (Our daughter is in awe of firefighters, so when my husband had a slew of free concert tickets, we let her opt to give ‘em to our local fire station.)

And mama bears, how can you show kindness?

  • Say, “Hi, how are you?” to a stranger and be a listening 👂
  • Show compassion toward under-served communities such as individuals living with homelessness. Say, hi 👆and get your kids involved by making kits.
  • Offer to watch your friend’s children for nothing in return, and truly love on her children, so her time away is guilt-free.
  • Take care of your neighbors. Teach your kids to be observant, and be the person who offers to feed the neighbor’s goldfish when they travel, or mow the lawn for the elderly woman down the street.
  • Instead of piling on the gifts at the holidays, talk to your little ones about gratitude and let them pick out gifts for someone else, such as an angel.

However you show your kindness for others, the best way to pay it forward in the world, is by nurturing kindness in your children.

How do you help you little ones pay it forward?


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