Code For Kindness

In case you didn’t know, all the pictures from my blog posts for this month come from my recent Pecha Kucha talk about Random Acts and why kindness matters. Because I’m shameless, I’m going to remind you that you can watch said talk right here. (Thanks again, PK!)

A little over a year ago, I had an idea of something I could do to help support this new organization I had kind of fallen in love with. I had done a couple of “acts” already, and was talking to folks about possibly joining the staff (someday…). But I wanted to do something else. Something unique.

One of the ways I like to spend my spare time–when I have it!–is by making jewelry. I never seem to find pieces I like, so I just kind of play around with stuff until I like what I see. One day I got the idea to make bracelets with little hidden messages in them. My method of choice? Seed beads that spell out secret letters in Morse code.

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“One Random Act of Kindness at a Time”

I was originally going to make these as my endurance project for Random Acts’ Endure4Kindness event, but it was months away! And I was impatient. So I asked if I could make bracelets that spelled “get kind” and sell them as an actual fundraiser, and I was approved to do so! So I opened up a little online shop and got to work. (Here’s the link if you’re curious.)

As it turned out, I still made them for E4K, and gave away everything I made. Donors got a bracelet, donors who gave more got custom bracelets, and I sent the rest to Random Acts. They were planning another volunteer trip to Nicaragua, and I wanted to give them a little something to cheer them on. Help the helpers, so to speak. And in response, I got this lovely tweet from the team:

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I can’t tell you how happy that little gesture made me! It made me feel like a little part of me was there, supporting the team in their work. It’s funny, but for the past week, I’ve had a little bit of Lord of the Rings in my head, where Samwise says to Frodo, “I can’t carry it for you, but I can carry you.” I can’t step away from work and family responsibilities at this stage in my life–though I hope it won’t always be that way–but I can send a small gift of support to those who can. (Also, you can see what the Nicaragua team has been doing right here.)

I’m not selling Morse code bracelets at this time, but I plan to bring them back for next year’s E4K. Or, if you’d like one now, just donate to my birthday fundraiser and I’ll make you one! (See what I did there?)