A Recipe for Kindness

Published online: Mar 12, 2018 Articles, East Idaho Health, Social
Viewed 1149 time(s)

I try to be a good cook. 


It turns out though, I’m not great at it. I’m not even good at it.
Every day, I head home from work holding onto this grand idea that I’m going to give my family a healthy dose of home cookin’, mainly because it seems like the right thing to do.

But cooking for me turns into vaguely reviewing a recipe, deciding I have ZERO of the ingredients on hand and then realizing going to the store would involve me actually having to locate my car keys, which always seems like more work than it’s really worth. This is the time during my “cooking” experience where I get a false sense of confidence and decide I can make substitutes for every ingredient.

Every. Single. One.

In case you’re wondering, parmesan cheese is not a good replacement for butter, nor Cream of Chicken soup for milk. I give you full permission to learn from my mistakes.

At this point in my proven process, I’m wondering what kind of world I’ve created where I’m more likely to have fresh parmesan cheese, a superfluous ingredient, over butter. The despondent-failure feeling sets in and I dig out my spare key in order to take my little ones to dinner. I hope trained counselors can help my adult children reconcile this part of their lives one day. For now, they just look at me with big eyes and a shrug that implies a well-she-tried attitude.

For those of you who don’t know me in person, this story proves I'm can be hard to take in large doses.  Just ask my kids. Or my co-workers.

Back to my story: luckily, the North Hi-way Cafe is a short distance from our home.

We consider ourselves regulars much to the dismay of the waiting staff. I don’t think we’ve ever been there without bumping into someone, spilling a drink or cutting off a senior citizen for the last available table. 

But, for now, they still let us in, so we were there last Wednesday. Proving a mom’s got-to-do what a mom’s got-to-do. We were enjoying our dinner while doing homework at the same time. As we started packing up, our waitress approached our table and said a nice couple had paid our bill, including tip.

In other words, we were free to leave after eating without any financial commitment.

On the way home, I wept. I’m not even slightly embarrassed to admit this.

I wish I could spice this story up by telling you I had no money and my kids hadn’t eaten in six days. Or at the very least, I had left my wallet at home and was going to have to leave one of my kids overnight as collateral. The one with the runny nose for sure.

But alas, this was not the case. I had come with plenty of money to pay, which is usually much appreciated/expected in the food-service industry in America.

The reason I wept is because there are caring people in this town. While mainstream media tells us the Earth is full of hate, murder and evil, it was this refreshing act of kindness that refocused my world view.

I have no idea who or where these people are, but they did more for us than pay a $20 bill. They left an impression with my girls that kindness and compassion are the most viable options for dealing with our fellow human beings. You never know what miracle is waiting for you to participate in and this could be a great time to find out.
While I may never have the opportunity to thank these people in person, you can be sure I am going to pay it forward. 


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