Week #114 – Seven Weeks to Happyness: SPREAD KINDNESS! (Donate pajamas!)
Greetings Happyness Tribe — and Happy Thanksgiving Week!
Dissension and divide still dominate our news…and it’s leaving many of us wondering what we can possibly do to make a difference in the world, especially as the holiday approach.
One answer…is to Spread Kindness, one random act at a time.
Because while we may not be able to single-handedly solve the world’s problems — there is a world of problems that we CAN solve, right here and right now in our own backyards!
Kindness for Christopher
Some of you may be familiar with the D’Amico family of Mount Arlington, NJ — and their Kindness for Christopher Movement. (I featured them last year on Week #64 of the blog.) The D’Amico family created Kindness for Christopher after their 10-year-old son died in a boating accident in June 2015. Kindness for Christopher encourages everyone to practice a random act of kindness on the 24th of every month (Christopher’s angel date). It has since traveled across the country and around the world — collecting over 13,000 likes on its Facebook page, featured on Fox News and other major media outlets, and showing up in mysterious discoveries of “Kindness Rocks” in random locations!
Last year, Laura D’Amico (Christopher’s mom) was kind enough to share with me the details of how this all got started…and what kept her going only five months later.
This year, Kindness is still going strong — and Laura was generous again to update me on their latest effort:
The 2nd Annual Kindness for Christopher Pajama Drive!
Last year, the D’Amicos set out to collect 1,000 pairs of pajama pants to be delivered just before Christmas. Laura told me at that time, “Our son wore pajama pants more than anyone. He loved them. They made him comfortable and happy. For children in the hospital, why not make them a little more comfy and happy while they are in a not so fun place dealing with being sick.”
The result? According to a recent post on their Facebook page, they collected “over 5,000 pairs of new pajamas of all sizes” — which were delivered to hospitals, orphanages, churches, and shelters throughout the New Jersey area.
This year they didn’t set a goal. “I just know that so many people love the idea and its getting promoted all over social media and a lot of teachers are running pajama drives this year. I am very excited to see the final tally.”
And donate they will! “People love (it),” Laura said. “They want to give to children/people who are having a hard time in their lives. They want them to be comforted when they are in the hospital/nursing home/orphanage/shelter.”
And the D’Amicos are no stranger to hard times. After all, it has been only 18 months since Christopher’s accident. I asked Laura, again, what keeps her going. “What inspires me these days are my children. I just had another baby (now 4 months old). My daughter, 13, sees that even with tragedy in life, it does go on. We have to get up every day and put one foot in front the other and carry on. Some days are so hard and some days are easy. It does feel good to be kind and do nice things for others. A smile is very healing.”
“Kindness is important to me because I have learned over the past 18 months since my son died, that I really don’t have a lot of control on what goes on in my life…not in a bad way, just in general. I learned that I can be kind and show kindness and believe it or not, it’s contagious. People have so many things to worry about in their lives between work, health, families, money etc. Being kind doesn’t cost anything but it makes you feel good. We have control of being kind.”
So what about you Happyness Tribe? Are you ready to help Spread some Kindness?!
Your Happyness Challenge for the week ahead: SPREAD KINDNESS! (Donate pajamas!) The 2nd Annual Kindness for Christopher Pajama Drive is underway! Donate NEW (not used) pajamas for all sizes/ages to Kindness for Christopher, PO Box 34, Mount Arlington, NJ, 07856 — or if you’d like to arrange to be a local drop-off/pick-up location, you can email them directly at email@example.com.
“Happiness to me this year is to be able to make others smile.” (Laura D’Amico)
Spread Happyness — Spread Kindness! Donate pajamas and “wrap someone in a hug” this week!
11/18/16 by Grace Church
© Grace Church
(PS: Special thanks to Laura D’Amico for taking the time to update me on her story this week! To learn more about Kindness for Christopher, the Pajama Drive, or to share your Kindness for Christopher stories: visit them on Facebook at facebook.com/Kindness for ChristopherD)