A container of food for the little old lady

The other day I went over to take Molly, the Schnoodle pup who just celebrated her 12th birthday, for a walk and then on to my house for a change of scenery.

(Scroll down and check out my Instragram feed of Molly’s head on my leg, preventing me from getting up and doing just about anything that day…)

Her female human is recuperating from a lengthy medical procedure and appreciated my offer to sit the pooch. The male human was at work.

As I entered the house, we exchanged some chit chat while simultaneously paying attention to a very barky Molly. Then, on my way out the door, my friend handed me a Tupperware container full of food.

“Please, could you just drop this off across the street for the little old lady?” she said.

The little old lady is 88 and still lives in her little bungalow by herself. She used to be Molly’s dog walker back in the day. The container was full of food from my friend’s meal last night, ready to be popped into the microwave.

I took the container and the dog and walked across the street. I knocked and the little old lady opened the door right away. She was expecting me as my friend had called her to let her know I was coming.

Molly of course immediately anticipated a treat. The little old lady, even though she no longer walks Molly, had a bag of treats on her kitchen table and happily fed one to the dog.

After a brief conversation about the cold weather, we left. I felt happy that the little old lady will have a hot, home-cooked meal to eat tonight on that very frigid winter’s day.

My point to this little anecdote has in actual fact nothing to do with the dog, or the dog walking. It does however bring forward this idea of looking out for someone when you can. Here is my friend, battling her own illness, and still making a hot meal for a senior citizen living in the ‘hood. Keeping an eye on her so that she can continue to live in her house instead of somewhere less desirable.

Sometimes, it’s a little thing that makes such a big difference.

This idea is not new. I have stumbled across some bloggers myself who talk about doing something small but nonetheless extraordinary just because they could. For example, Julie down in Texas paid for someone’s meal in a restaurant:
There was this elderly man sitting alone at another table. I felt bad for him being alone so I paid his bill.

LA in New York took a neighbour to the hospital for a procedure when she seemed to have no one to turn to or ask.

And K E Garland out in Florida created this post where she talked about paying it forward all year once Christmas has past. Check out number 7 as one example…

There are many others…

Wandering home with Molly I reflected on my own actions. Am I doing enough with all this endless pet sitting, and dog walking?

It’s true that I turned dog walking into a little side business. I have a teenager to feed in this house, after all. πŸ™‚ But we continue to look after our friends’ pets when they need us to. We do this without any expectations of reimbursement. Just recently we’ve had our first experience with a hamster and my daughter was absolutely delighted (and we are I am in in agreement that hamsters make great temporary pets who can visit us for the short term and no we will not be getting a hamster). 😜

But we also do other, non-animal-related volunteering.

We have and continue to shovel snow off of neighbours’ driveways if we happen to be out there doing ours and we don’t see them around at the time.

We volunteer at lot, at school and in sports. Volunteering is a huge occupation when you have children in elementary school and youth sports. Most youth sports is run by parent volunteers…without all of us contributing, the kids would not have the positive experiences they do. It all counts, whether it’s admin related in scheduling activities, to helping other parents bring kids to and from venues when they themselves are delayed or unavailable, to fundraising, coaching or supporting coaches when some are absent and a slew of other things.

But is there more we can do? My mom does more…a lot more.

I will have to start spending more time observing my immediate surroundings to see if we can find other ways to be helpful to others.

Your turn to share. Do you find ways to help someone out, or pay it forward as people tend to call it? What are your ideas?

20 thoughts on “A container of food for the little old lady

  1. I try to open doors for people. For me, opening the door to a public place, so that someone with a walker can go through it before me… well, that’s the easy part. I’ve been having to really stretch outside my comfort zone and open the doors of my home to everyone so that our little community feels like a community. As an introvert, it’s not always easy, but I’m getting better at it

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love this. I try to be intentional. As you said above, it really is about awareness I think. If we are paying attention, little opportunities always present themselves for us to be a blessing to someone else.

    I know it’s the little things that often mean the most to me. I try to do those for other people when I can. This post reminded me how very busy I’ve been lately. Was a little wake up call for me, so thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. A heart-warming and thought-provoking post! So nice of you to transport the meal to the person – you added a key component in the efforts. You’ve inspired me to look at how I donate time or help, too. I volunteer for the Alzheimer’s Association as a trainer, not nearly as easy to measure the impact like a warm-cooked meal.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, running a business and working with the community was an eye opener for me. We were sometimes taken advantage of but unfortunately in business you have to trust even when it could be an disadvantage for you. It is a fine line. Trusting people daily without fear of being cheated monetarily is much easier for me to handle.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Examples: one gives out bread to people in need on Sunday and helped one of the Arabic speaking neighbors who doesn’t speak much English with driveway repavement. The other guy, retired military is always very compassionate when speaking about a neighbor and I have to admit that I just found them strange and was catty. Thanks for posting.

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  5. I love this, and you are so right!

    I live in a very service-oriented community and am part of an extremely service-oriented religion. I’ve realized lately that this selflessness is missing in much of the world.

    As you said, though, I get caught up in life and its tasks and do not always remember to look for opportunities. So I do a meal here, a snow-shoveling there, and a visit when the impulse strikes me.

    I’d conclude with the recommendation to do the little five minute service you feel prompted to do. Like you said, making a effort to also volunteer in sports or community on top of that helps you, the community, and the people you’re volunteering to help. I’d like to do more of that. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

  6. It takes a leap of faith to look outside yourself. My husband has cancer and I have been amazed at how much more compassionate and empathetic he has become towards others and more observant of our immediate neighbors. He knows far more people in our area than me and has been able to find many military buddies. He has introduced them to me and I am amazed at their gentleness and their acts of kindness toward neighbors and unknown people. I am learning from them.

    Liked by 2 people

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