Before school started my kids and I went on a road trip to Indianapolis. On the way home, we stopped at Fair Oaks Farm to use the bathroom and stretch our legs. It was a beautiful day and we were in no rush to get home, so I decided to buy tickets to allow the kids to enjoy the activities at the farm.
They bungee jumped.
Tried to climb a wall.
Got lost in a maze.
We even saw a calf being born.
I don't imagine my children will ever forget that moment.
After we left, we stopped at the adjacent gas station still giddy from the cow birth I allowed them to pick out a treat (Hostess and Fun Dip = bad idea).
We got back on the road and I was feeling pretty confident about this road trip thing as the kids were quietly reading in the back as I laughed along to a podcast. As we began to see the Chicago skyline, the traffic slowed and the littles started playing some loud imagination game, when suddenly my daughter screamed.
"Where is Isabelle?"
Isabelle is her American Girl Doll that she dresses daily, brushes her hair and brings her everywhere. I even have begun to set a place at the dinner table for her.
I calmly told her she was probably under the seat or in the back of the car. Then the loud horrendous tears begun.
"I LEFT ISABELLE AT THE GAS STATION!" She bawled.
Of course this is the moment I am entering the city; the signs and exits begin to flash before my eyes and my daughter's sobs turned into hysterics. I quickly pull off at the Chinatown exit and search for a place to stop my car so I can think.
As fast as the wifi would allow, I found the number for the farm's gas station. The sweet lady, Corrine, that answered the phone, luckily said she had found Isabelle and put her safely on top of her file cabinet.
After driving three hours and less than a half hour from home, I seriously considered turning around to go get her. Instead, Corrine said she would send Isabelle to us, and when I offered my credit card number to charge the shipping, she told me not to worry about it.
One week later a box arrived addressed to my daughter. I waited until after school so she could open it herself.
Her tired-long day attitude immediately disappeared as she tore open the box.
"Isabelle!" She somehow squeezed the plastic person with true love.
I then noticed there was more in the box. Included was an adorable note written from Isabelle about her experience on the farm, a toy pig and tickets for our whole family to come back to the farm.
Both of my children were overjoyed to receive this special package and it is lovely to see that there are nice people out there.
This was an unexpected reminder of the importance of kindness and a fun break from the many bad news stories clogging our feed.
Let's all try to do one nice thing for someone else today. Try it and let me know what happens.
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- Check out my 2014 photo project How Quickly They Change.