Make Someone's Day (for Under $10)
Remember the idea of paying it forward? You probably wish you could do it without paying an arm and a leg. But acts of kindness don’t have to be expensive—they don’t have to cost you anything at all. Here are some creative ways to brighten someone else’s day on a low budget.Be the Chocolate Fairy Get a bag of good quality, individually wrapped chocolates - such as Dove or Hershey's Bliss - and fill a mason jar with them. Attach a flower with raffia and a note that says, "Chocolate is nature's way of making up for Mondays. Love, The Chocolate Fairy." Pick a Monday and place the jar at the doorstep of a neighbor. Run stealthily away.
Breakfast's on Me When going through a drive-thru to pick up breakfast, pay for the bill of the person behind you, too. This act of kindness will probably be less than $10, and that person may do it for someone else next time.
Gardening Service Pulling weeds is no one's favorite summer pastime, but it's a job that has to be done. While attending to your weeds, check your neighbor's garden or flower beds for overbearing weeds. Spending just a few extra minutes weeding will give your neighbor a happy surprise and will allow you to help beautify your neighborhood.
Surprise Service People with a Treat When visiting the doctor's office, picking up your car from the auto shop, or going to the hair salon, surprise the staff with a treat. A box of doughnuts or a dozen cookies fits nicely into a budget of $5 to $10 and will put a smile on the faces of those who receive it.
Run Extra Errands If you know someone who is busy with a new job or has a newborn baby, offer to pick up a few things for them while you are out doing errands. Basic tasks like grocery shopping or dry clean pickup can become heavy burdens when schedules are full or when unexpected events take place.
Coupons Instead of Casseroles When someone new moves into your neighborhood, instead of the traditional casserole or brownie plate, provide a list of local grocery stores and restaurants in your area. Include a $10 coupon or gift card to your favorite grocery store or restaurant. This guarantees your neighbors the opportunity to have a positive adventure in their new hometown.
Music to Remember When When friends have a son leaving for college or a daughter getting married, cheer them up by sending a CD of songs that came from the year their son or daughter was born. You can use iTunes to search for popular songs from those specific years, or use your own personal collection. Hearing those songs will give your friends a few laughs during their trip down memory lane.
--- Article adapted from "Make Someone's Day" in LDS Living's May/June 2010 issue. Learn more great tips by ordering our print magazine!