• Julie Manquen

Send a Smile

Do you remember that feeling of receiving gifts when you were younger and how it made you feel? I am not talking about the actual gift mattering or the amount of money that the person spent on you but the feeling that you had when someone took the time to think about you and wanted to make you smile. Some of us are so busy or consumed in our own lives that we don't even notice these small gestures. I notice the little things that people do and I try to do it myself for others. I think it is an amazing feeling to receive a card or a care package from someone just because.

I need to get back into the swing of things again because I have slipped. I love doing care packages for people in my life, especially my kids. I know they are adults for the most part but why wouldn't I want them to still feel special? I remember when my oldest daughter went away to college, she was so homesick. I would send her care packages to try to cheer her up. Her college had a bakery on campus that would deliver fresh-baked chocolate chip cookies to your student. I had them delivered during exams. Are our kids are ever too old to send them care packages for holidays, we are talking all of them, Easter, Valentine's Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Birthday, Christmas, 4th of July, or just because? I don't think so, I don't think we are ever "too old" to be told that we are loved and being thought about.

I remember as a child my Mom letting us pick what meal we wanted her to make for our birthday and she would make our favorite cake for us. It is those little things that I remember not what my parents bought for me. All of our kids except for one are adults and live out of state and we usually don't get to see them on their actual birthday. I have no idea if they enjoy this or laugh at me but I always make them brownies or cupcakes and mail them along with their gift. I want them all to know that even though we are not physically with them we still take the time out for them, think about them and miss them. Although I did recently find out that the homemade cupcakes were a disaster and did not fare well in the mail so I will stick to brownies!

I love Pinterest and sometimes think that I am creative and instead of sending store-bought care packages I feel the need to "create" my own. I don't know if you are active on Pinterest but you can find great ideas for unique care packages for all different occasions.

Do you send birthday cards to people in your life or do you just rely on posting a "happy birthday" on social media? I love sending people in my life cards or notes, whether it's their birthday or if they are having a tough time in their life just to let them know that they aren't alone. I have to say that I love getting cards in the mail from people, whether it is a birthday card or just an I'm thinking of you card. I guess that Golden Rule holds true, treat people as you would like to be treated. There are many new versions for this now like, Love Up, Pay it forward, etc but I like the gold ole' Golden Rule.

Our lives are filled with negativity right now, everywhere we turn, we need to take a step back and think if we can make someone else's day just a little brighter. I doesn't take much. We never know what battle people are facing, they may be smiles on the outside but struggling on the inside.

Try sending someone in your life a care package this week, just because. Let me know how it turns out! I will put a few small gift ideas to send in a care package on my "favorite things" page.

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