June 22, 2007

Coffee Has Redeemed Itself.

Today has been amazing.

It began with a routine trip to my local Starbucks drive-thru. I decided to stop for a JUMBO cup of coffee before I headed up to my friend Kerri's house for the first day of our new Co-op! (more on that in a minute.)

I was running a little bit late, and so I was frustrated when I pulled around the corner to the drive-thru and saw a line of cars in front of me. There were three cars waiting for their drinks and one minivan in front of me placing an extra long drink order. The mom in the minivan ordered 3 hot chocolates for her kids, a doughnut or two, and a venti coffee for herself. In my head I was thinking, "Ugg this is going to take SO long and now I'm going to be late!" and I was being a hugenormous poop-head in general.

It did take awhile for everyone in front of me to get their drinks, but then it was finally my turn at the window. I leaned out to hand the cashier my credit card, but instead of taking the card, he just handed me my drink and said "That won't be necessary! The woman who was in front of you has already paid for your drink."

I was in shock and disbelief.

"She did?? Whaa? Did she say why??", I stammered.

The cashier then told me that about five cars prior, someone had paid for the drink of the person behind them in line... "just because". Then, the person in that car decided to pass it on and said they'd like to pay for the drink of the person behind them as well, and so on, and so on, and so on.

I was the FIFTH person to get their drink paid for that morning. I of course was THRILLED at this amazing display of goodwill, so I told the cashier that I would absolutely love to pay for the drink of the person behind me as well.

Everyone working in the Starbucks had huge grins on their faces, and you could tell that this little procession had really made their day. I pulled away from the drive-thru with an entirely different perspective than I had pulled in with, and I couldn't help but thank God for the amazing reminder that good things really can and do happen these days.

I was so tempted to drive back through the drive-thru on my way home from Co-op (a mere 5 HOURS later) to see if the goodwill had survived that long, but I decided one trip to the 'Bucks a day was PLENTY.

I still feel giddy and blessed from that little exchange. I feel excited to pass on the favor and maybe start some more "goodwill chains" of my own across this town of mine. One tiny act can start something powerful and wonderful and could affect more people than I would ever know about!

I'm excited to have had my eyes opened again this morning. To small acts of love and kindness. And I can't WAIT to start putting what I learned into practice.

I encourage you all to try it too. Be creative. Be bold. I'd love to hear your stories and your outcomes as they unfold! Or have you had any similar experiences in your lifetime that have really shocked and amazed you?


Today was the first day of our Co-op, and I'm so excited about this I could just pee........ my pants. I've been involved in a playgroup for almost a year now, where a few moms get together up at the church or at each other's houses and we just let the kids play and eat lunch while we attempt to chat and get to know each other a little better. It has been AMAZING for me to be a part of this group of women, (one of them happens to be Mrs. Oklahoma right now...how badass is that?!) and so I was crazy excited when my friend Darcy started talking about trying to organize a weekly co-op.

My brothers and I were raised in a co-op in my neighborhood growing up... a co-op that my mom helped organize and that is still going on to this day, 30 years later.

Our co-op is going to be every Friday. The moms all bring the kids to one person's house, where two moms will stay and watch them all from 9am-1pm. This was our very first week, and Kerri and I were the first teachers. We followed a schedule that Darcy came up with, and it was SO MUCH FUN!

The kids played and then did an art project (sunflower windsocks). Then it was snack time and storytime, and after that we went outside. I brought my guitar, so after they played outside for awhile, we gathered all the kids in the living room and I sang goofy kids songs and we all danced around like crazies. Then, we ate lunch, played outside some more, and it was already time to clean up!

sunflower windsocks!

The kids had a blast and as the moms came to pickup their little ones, they looked so refreshed and grateful for their time away from the kids. And now, I get to drop Ezra off every Friday for a whole month before I teach again!

The kids play so well together and there is quite a range in the ages of all the kids, so I think it will be good for Ezra to spend some time socially interacting with them all. He did great today. He even said "TREE" and "SWING" for the first time today.

I'm also still looking to get Ezra into a "Mother's Day Out" program once a week so that I can dedicate a good chunk of hours every week to growing my vintage business. I decided that this was more practical and fun for me than going out and getting a part time job somewhere. (due to cost of childcare vs. part-time pay, finding consistent scheduling, and not becoming too overwhelmed...) For now, this is the best game plan for me and my family.

So... yeah! Things are looking up!


Misguided Mommy said...

that co-op thingy sounds so neat! i'm so jealous of your starbucks thing maybe next time i'm feeling spendy i'll try paying for someones coffee with mine

L.A. Daddy said...

Wait. First. Your Starbucks have drive-throughs? Really? How...? Oh, you guys have a little more room there than we have here.

But I am so totally going to try that and I'll let you know how it goes. I'm just wondering if there are any places out here with a drive-through!

I guess that doesn't matter. Does it?

Very cool. I may make this into a short film...

sufferingsummer said...

Seeing as my husband works for SB's I can't wait to tell him this story, I know he'll get a kick out of it and I wonder if it has happened in his drive thru?

Co-op sounds so fabulous...I gotta get myself connected to one of those and good for you for finding an inventive way to relieve the tired mama symptoms but still raise your own kid...that is something to be proud of!

R-becca said...

....your pants!! HAHAHAHAHAHA - thanks for doing that for me!

You had the raddest day and I'm so stoked for you. :)

Kerry said...

what a cool story! i once payed the toll for the car behind me at the tollbooth. I'll have to remember this to do again. Thanks for the reminder.

Great idea for the co-op.

Misguided Mommy said...

dear emery, my dad just showed up here drinking a starbucks, then i sign on your page and the starbucks cups are still there...i think this is a sign that i should drive to starbucks if i ever saw one

Em said...

I am devastated - you have drive through starbucks! No such luck in UK, not even read rest of post i was distracted by that! Going to read...

Jessica Sutherland said...

I hope this doesn't take away from the amazingness of your story but I was telling my boyfriend about your neat drive thru experience and he said that it actually happens all the time where he works (at a starbucks). I thought that was interesting. He said one time this lady bought 10 gift cards with $5 on them and then handed them out to the people in line with her business card...not as kind as your experience...but pretty smart advertising I thought.

JUST A MOM said...

HHMMM that is pretty cool I will have to remember this one thank you for sharing,.

ali said...

if only we had starbucks drive-thrus in canada...

i'm so glad to hear it's happening in other places too!