Friends, Indeed: Kit, Liz, Jan

IMG_2963Have you ever been in a place where kindness means a whole lot to you, more so than usual? Feeling a little overwhelmed, a little harried, but then shored up by someone else and their kindness to you?

I have been on the receiving end of a lot of kindness lately. For starters, while I was off selling candy at holiday boutiques this past week, my husband cleaned the entire house, from top to bottom! How’s that for nice?!

I can, and have, thanked him in person but I want to thank three other kind people more publicly.

First I need to mention my totally cool sister, Kit, who was my right-hand gal, yet again, while I sold candy at the boutiques. She helped last year and I will not EVER accept an invitation to one of these boutiques if she is unavailable or unwilling to help. My sister is mellow, even-tempered, and methodical about helping so I can just flap around and talk to customers! It doesn’t come as any surprise that I depend on her for this sort of help—she has been by my side, often literally but always figuratively, my entire life.

I knew I could count on my sister’s kindness this past week but I was blind-sided by kindness from two other people, too—the antidote to feeling stressed and exhausted is nice people!

Let’s take the kindness of a blog friend, Liz, who writes the blog, “food for fun.” Not only did Liz, a professional foodie, give me some great business and buy lots of candy from me, she wrote a really, REALLY nice blog post about the candy and shared some of her stash with others in the food industry. It is so reassuring to hear this kind of feedback from someone who is truly knowledgeable about food and the fact that she gave me the kind feedback so publicly . . . well, it doesn’t get any better than that!

I saw Liz’s blog post at the end of a long and intense day of selling at one of the holiday boutiques. Those events are fun but exhausting for a hard-core introvert like me. However, when I saw what Liz had written I felt new again and ready to go back the next day, for the second boutique, with a spring in my step!

I know you’d enjoy Liz’s blog as much as I do. It does what you’d expect a food blog to do—provide recipes and talk about food trends—but Liz writes with an honesty and humor that I find lacking in so many food blogs. Other food bloggers can make me feel like a schmo in the kitchen but Liz keeps it real and really fun. Plus she writes frequently about bourbon . . . and that means a lot to me!

Liz had me flying pretty high but then I had another long day of selling and a five-hour drive home. Another low-energy period, begging to be buoyed by kindness! I got home to an envelope from Jan, the author of “The Snail of Happiness.”

Jan is interested in sustainability—with a Ph.D. in ecology, I guess that’s not surprising. She recently finished an advanced program in permaculture and, as part of that process, made a masterpiece blanket that included her own crochet work, as well as crocheted and knitted blocks from blog friends around the world. When I whined to Jan that her mailbox must be a lot more fun than mine, she took it upon herself to change that! This is her modus operandi it seems . . . .

When I returned home from my downstate selling extravaganza yesterday, I had an envelope from Wales waiting for me. Jan had crocheted me a cotton ray of sunshine, some ever-blooming roses, and a big and beautiful cloth that she says is a dishcloth but that I can’t imagine ever using on dishes! I am pondering some ideas about how to use it, even as I write.

Jan’s blog is another I’m confident you’ll love—in fact, I know many of you do follow it and are contributors to her masterpiece! If you haven’t checked The Snail of Happiness out yet, do so—Jan loves that which is handmade and she brings an intelligent, down-to-earth voice to her blog.

All of this is an excellent reminder, at this time of year when we’re urged to buy big to show people we love them, that it is often the small, unexpected gestures that really matter and will brighten a day, lighten a load. I’ve been reminded of this important lesson by Kit and Liz and Jan, by being on the receiving end of their kindness.

And I resolve to do more on the giving end as well.

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34 thoughts on “Friends, Indeed: Kit, Liz, Jan

  1. Answering the questions in your first paragraph: YES. My husband is always kind to me (and everyone else.) And my dear friend Beth helped hold me up for a solid year, when I was too … weak … to make it through on my own. I credit her in particular but I had a couple of other friends who sustained me that year, too, Alan and Glen.

    What a boost for you to be treated so tenderly, just when you needed it. I’ll be sure to look in on their blogs. They sound like wonderful people.

    • I tend to think I don’t rely much on others . . . so it’s always a bit of a shock to realize how much they mean to me! I’m glad you have people to turn to, and that I do, too!

  2. Wonderful post with such a heartwarming reminder of the ripple effect of kindness! And crocheted and knitted dishcloths are just the best! What great friends you have, Kerry, but I suspect what goes around comes around…..

  3. It’s the unexpected gift or thoughtful act that I treasure the most. As Silver in the Barn said, I agree, what goes around comes around.

  4. Random acts of kindness indeed. I loved reading about these, but really, is it kind to make me aware of yet more blogs to enjoy reading? There aren’t enough hours in the day. Nevertheless, thank you for introducing me to Liz and Jan. I shall enjoy getting to know them better through their posts.

    • I know, I know–more blogs to follow–where will we find the time?! And yet, I think you’ll like these two a lot–happy, positive people and intelligent writing!

  5. Oh how lovely to hear of so much kindness coming your way, just when you needed it. I too have been lucky enough to have been sent a special gift by Jan. Times were so bad for me and I was at rock bottom when the postman left me a note saying that a parcel from Wales had been left on my log pile! Every time I look at the stitches and feel the softness of the wool of her lovely gift I think of the love and care and time she put into making something just for me.
    I am really happy to think that you feel so cared for. You give so much to us all year round with your words and pictures.

    • That Jan is something, isn’t she?! I think lots of us, in this particular blog circle, have been on the receiving end of her kindness. I’m glad she knew just when to send you a gift, to cheer you up and remind you of the fine people out here in your world!

  6. How absolutely wonderful that you received such support from your sister and your friend Liz – words of praise indeed! And the huge hearted and quite wonderful Dr Snail [who contributed so beautifully to the ‘Dangler of International Happiness’] I love the flowers and the dishcloth – though I’m with you, I wouldn’t use it as a dishcloth either! All topped off by that keeper of a husband – what a wonder! Very, very wonderful – I am made very happy reading this post on my dreary Monday morning. Have a wonderful week! xoxo

    • Yes, “Dr. Snail” has contributed a lot to you and me, both! It’s so nice to have support from others, both expected and unexpected. And I wish I could clone my husband and send him to you–he never fails to amaze!

  7. Well, my dear, I am not surprised that so much kindness comes your way…becuase like attracts like! The Snail of Happiness is a wonderful inspirational blog and will check out the Food for Fun! So funny…I just blogged about my kind husband on Friday! Such lucky girls are we…but than again what would they be without us;0)

  8. Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful! Sisters, husbands, and good friends, so much love for all these seriously good people. I love the balance these dear people provide you – ying and yang.

  9. what a nice mention, Kerry–thank YOU! Love that my post lifted you up when you needed lifting. To be honest, it was an easy out for me as I didn’t need to make anything–I just clicked and bought 🙂 And such yum it was and would hope you get a few more orders out of it. Saw that J over at Attempts at Domesticity placed an order, too 🙂 Woohoo! Glad to have connected and it’s fun to be following. Good luck with those shows. Were you able to make good connections? Your candy is truly art.

  10. Kind words, kind deeds and excellent chocolate…… so glad they came together to bring you good cheer. Your dishes would love such a beautiful cloth; go on.. spoil them. But if it is fine enough, cotton cloths make wonderful face/wash cloths, so you could use it to spoil yourself.

    • I might have less trouble justifying using it as a face cloth than a dishcloth . . . I need to learn to practice what I preach, that such items as these are meant to be USED. And I can’t quite get over the image of you making dishcloths out of old t-shirts–how did that turn out?

  11. Hooray for celebrating kindness, and that must have been a fun oackage to receive! Many blogs (especially about DIY and food) make me feel like a nitwit. I often wonder if nothing ever goes wrong . I recently tried a DIY project that looked perfect, but in reality, not so much. I’m thinking about posting it, including how it turned out in the end.

  12. What a heartwarming post! It’s wonderful to hear about all the acts of kindness. Thanks for sharing the link to Liz’s blog. I enjoyed the post about your candies.

  13. What a thrill it must have been to read what Liz had to say about your chocolates! What a talent you are! (and now I’m hungry … and it’s not usually sweets that draw me in but yours looks wonderfully delicious!)

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