Wednesday, March 13, 2013

35 Good Deeds for My 35th Birthday

As I've been promising since last week, here is the epic birthday present I gave myself this year:

35 Good Deeds for my 35th Birthday!

This has been a project in the making for a long while.  I think I started my original list back in December and have been adding ideas as they came to me.  Then we got our big storm and some of my ideas got ruled out. It's hard to pick up litter when the litter is stuck under a foot of snow!  Despite that, and some other challenges, I think I got all 35 of my deeds accomplished. I started last Friday and have continued on through today. Here's the list (there's a prize at the end, so make sure to read the whole thing!):

1.     Buy coffee and a McD gift card for the crossing guard at the kids' school.
2.     Pay for the person behind us at McDonald's. (I'll admit to being thankful when the vehicle behind us ended up having one person, instead of the van full of people in the other line!)
3.     While waiting for the crossing guard to get to her post, I noticed some people's trash can lids were blowing away, so I jumped out of the van and replaced them.

After I dropped the kids off at school, I met Julie at Costco to mooch off her membership.  I bought a supply of food for our food pantry at church and lots of cookies. And had quite a fun shopping trip as well!!
As I was packing my groceries into the van, I was excited to see that someone had left a cart in the middle of the lot! I was going to put it back and count that as a good deed.  Then I heard a man behind me say to another person, "Here, let me take that for you." And before I could turn around to see, he was by my van, loading my groceries and taking my cart, my good deed cart, his own cart and another customer's cart.  I said, "I was going to put that away as my good deed, but I guess it would defeat the purpose to fight with you about it." And we both laughed!  So instead, my good deed was

4.     Allowing another person to serve me by doing a good deed for me.

5.     I delivered groceries to the food pantry at my church.

Then I met Julie and D for daily Mass.  After Mass,

6.     I took my former co-worker/office mate Louisa and Julie and D out for lunch.

After all that, I was tired and full, so I went home for a break.  Of course, as soon as I sat down, the phone rang. It was Benjamin's daycare calling to tell me that he had been coughing all through naptime. I went to pick him up and came home and snuggled my boy on the couch for a while.

When it was time to pick up the older two, they helped me

7.     Deliver cookies to their after-school teachers and then

8.     Tape popcorn bags to the Redbox machine (while we rented ourselves a movie for our Friday movie night).

After a good's night rest, we started again fresh on Saturday morning.  As I mentioned on Monday, the kids colored some thank you cards while I took a shower.  Then we headed out and

9.     Delivered a bag of dog food to the SPCA. The kids also got a tour of the facility and loved looking at all the cats, dogs, bunnies, and a random guinea pig.

10.  Delivered a bag of cat food and cat litter to the local cat rescue center (and played with kitties).

11.     Then we took Daddy and his co-workers some cookies before visiting the

12.     Fire Station with cookies and
13.     Taking cookies to the Police Station.

We took a break at a local Mexican restaurant and the kids stared at the Spanish language soap operas like they were fascinated.  (Frances says they are more fun than regular TV because you can make up your own story!)

14.     We delivered some baby blankets and sippy cups to the local family homeless shelter and then

15.     Visited the Rescue Squad with more cookies.

We cam e home for a break and nap for Benjamin and then we

16.     Anonymously bought some strangers a gift from their Amazon wedding registry.

17.    Anonymously bought a woman a gift from her Amazon baby registry.

18.     Bought Project Home Indy some items from their Amazon wish list. (If you click no other links today, please read that story.  Bring some tissues!)

That was about all we could handle for Saturday!!

Sunday morning we went to Mass and the the grocery store as usual.

19.     We bought some flowers for the lady at the deli who always gives the boys cheese slices when we visit.

We finished our grocery trip and then picked Frances up from Sunday School.  We went home, lunched, napped and headed back our to

20.     Scatter some bird seed in the front yard because Henry was concerned about the birds.

Then we went to the dollar store and bought

21.     Balloons to give to sick people at the hospital.  While we were there we also

22.     Delivered a craft kit and some kids' magazines to the Pediatric Unit.

Monday morning, bright and early, we

23.     Delivered cookies to the garbage collectors as well as

24.    The recycling truck.

25.     We also left a gift card for the mail carrier.

26.     Benjamin helped me deliver cookies to his teacher for her birthday. Even though all he would say was "cookies" while giggling, instead of saying "Happy birthday" like I had told him to.

27.     I made dinner for a co-worker on the eve of her honeymoon.

Monday afternoon, {like a complete jerk}I forgot to order pizza for the teacher's at Benjamin's day care like I had promised, so I called the pizza place right away and made arrangements for

28.     A pizza delivery Tuesday at Benjamin's day care.

29.     On Tuesday, I hid lottery tickets in the seats and computers at work.

30.     I put a pre-paid copy card near the printers for free printing for the students.

31.     I invited another friend of the family out for dinner with my family. (He hasn't responded as of yet, but if he doesn't I promise to do another good deed to replace this one.)

32.     On Wednesday, I ordered flowers for my Mommy for my birthday with a card that says "thank you."

33.     I spent an hour playing vocabulary building games at

34.     I wrote "thank you" notes to Frances and Henry's teachers to show my gratitude for all they have done for my kids this year.

35.     I need your help with my last good deed.  I would like each of you to perform a good deed today.  It can be something simple or something elaborate. It can be free or expensive.  Do something nice for someone else today.  Leave me a comment about what you did (or plan to do).  I will pick one winner for every five comments here to randomly send a handmade photobook. 

If you plan to enter, please make sure that I have a way to contact you in case you win.  I will end this contest on Friday at noon and pick winners shortly after that.  I will announce the winners Friday afternoon in a post as well as contacting them by email.  These photobooks are made by me.  Depending on how many winners there are, it may take me a a week or so to create them.  One entry per person please.

I would also like to thank my mother, my big brother and my friend Julie for helping to fund this crazy endeavor.  I really appreciate it guys!!


  1. Wow! What a great way to celebrate your birthday! I just stopped by from SITS to say hello; hope you find time to do the same.

    I cooked breakfast for Mr. Eva today. That's my good deed because I hate to cook breakfast!

  2. This is awesome! I just added it to my simple ways to give every day list on Skinny Scoop ( I love the popcorn idea! I'll have to come back and report on my good deed.

    1. Thanks Jennifer! I appreciate the promotion. :) That's quite a good list you've got going on there!

  3. Happy birthday - such a lovely way to celebrate! I'm fascinated by - never heard of it! I just donated 500 grains of rice and bookmarked the page. I'm going to share with my kids too - they can practice math and their Spanish vocabulary too.

  4. I convinced the new pope to take the name Francs - I hope your Frances is excited ;)

    1. This would have been funnier if I had spelled it correctly... Darn babies!

  5. I volunteered to be the "guinea pig" for a fellow student's presentation today! And I brought one awesome lady some cupcakes for her birthday! Happy Birthday Rabia! Thanks for the inspiration :)

  6. I"m helping my kids with homework... does that count? Wish I'd seen this earlier. :-) Happy Birthday!

  7. So awesome! I especially love the crossing guard one because it hits home for me. I pass the local crossing guard every day and come rain or snow or whatever, she is out there waving and smiling at every car that passes. She's amazing! And she dresses up on holidays. I want to give her a gift too and my kids don't even go to her school yet! They will in a few years.

  8. Number 8 is just THE BEST IDEA EVER!! We LOVE it! :) What a fantastic idea and a wonderful post!-The Dose Girls

  9. What a fun thing to do for your birthday! Very cool. Thanks for sharing it with us.

    Stopping by from SITS.

  10. What a great way to celebrate your birthday!! I usually do "34 things for my 34th birthday" (or whatever my age would be that year) but I REALLY like the idea of doing that many good deeds!!! I think I'm going to have to work on my list this year. Thanks for the inspiration. :)

  11. This is a wonderful way to celebrate your birthday! I think my favorites were paying for the person's food behind you and taping the popcorn to the Redbox! That's super cute! Happy Birthday!

  12. I know I commented on this post over a month ago, but I wanted to let you know that during a tour of the United Nations I was on this week, the guide talked about the Free Rice website. Hopefully every tour guide mentions it; thank you for introducing me to such a great opportunity to get smart and fight hunger!

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