Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Paying It Forward

My kiddo had a holiday from school on Monday (President's Day) so I decided to do something fun. I found a nature scavenger hunt list online and we went to a nearby state park hiking. We have been there in the past but usually to play at the playground only. We packed a backpack (with drinks), the list (and pencil to check off it items found or seen), a few snacks, diaper/wipes for the toddler and my camera.

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The first trail we picked to hike ran along a creek and was interesting. It was a mile long and then the second trail (to return) was over a mile as well. It was, in hindsight, probably too long to walk as a first hike in a long time. My kindergartener enjoyed finding things on our list (and we put some in a bag we were carrying - those things that weren't part of the park like flowers etc. but like berries, leaves from the ground, bark from a tree, pinecone, to name a few.) Surprisingly, the toddler walked the first leg of the hike, a good mile, with no issues. It's at that point that I realized that I should have brought the baby backpack. I ended up carrying him most of the second mile back. But it wasn't too bad since we were walking so slow to begin with, lol!

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Afterwards, we were famished and went to a diner place (Waffle House.) The kids love their waffles and I think their chili rocks! We drove about ten minutes to get there (and my toddler and I were still red as we always get that way when we get hot.) Oh, it was really hot (what happened to spring? it's already hot!) and our backs were sweaty too. We ordered our food and then talked until our food arrived. We sat in a booth right next to the counter where people were sitting and eating. I noticed there was a man close to us but never made eye contact but observed that he looked similar to a friend's husband (but clearly wasn't because he had less hair.) The kids and I talked about where we walked. I had my kindergartener trace the trails and I was showing my toddler letters on his cup of milk that he was drinking. Nothing unusual occurred, well, other than the kids were very well behaved probably because they were so tired that they had no energy to act up!

When it was time to leave, I asked the waitress for our check. She said nope. I was confused and said that I hadn't received it yet. She then said that a little bird had already paid for it. Totally confused now, I asked for more clarification. Apparently the guy sitting near us asked to pay for our meal. He left long before we finished (I didn't even see him leave) and with no explanation other than he wanted to pay for it. I was floored! Completely surprised by such a generous act of kindness. Of course, since it was a great feeling, I definitely need to pass it on to someone else in the near future!

5 comments:

K- floortime lite mama said...

what a lovely lovely story
adore the pics
your kids anre gorgeous and you are an amazing mum to do these things with them
Reading about what that guy did makes me feel awesome

Rachel said...

I love random acts of kindness! Sounds like an awesome day!

Lisa said...

Awww...he paid for it cuz you are awesome! I bet..you brightened his day.
Are those turtles on the log?
How cool is that?
I love the scavenger hunt idea...so going to do that if it ever warms up here.

robin said...

Yes, those are turtles. We were too loud earlier and they jumped off (didn't see how many.) When we returned to that slough on the way back, we were quiet and found three turtles on the log sunning.

Michelle Pixie said...

I love the hike idea! I am going to have to do that with my girls in the near future. We've had our meal paid for once when we went out to dinner as a family and it is such an amazingly kind thing for someone to do. :)