Warm Connections {Day 23}: Letting Others Know You Care

Learning to love our neighbors and friends, and seeing a need and filling it, brings warmer connections in life.

In many seasons of life, I’ve learned to give to others.

Giving reminds people that you care, and that they matter.

My two girlfriends in town both lost their mamas last week. Even though both moms were elderly, 89 and 92, no matter how “ready” you think you’ll be to let a loved one go, it’s hard.

I asked myself what I could do to bless these hurting women. Flowers and cards are great, but what would be a more personable touch, especially since I lost my mom in my early 30s and understood their pain. I determined to bring a meal to each of my friends. (One in a basket, one in a lined box. Boxes work great, too!)

With one friend, I got to see a recent video and hear the laughter of a very special lady.

With the other, I got to view (and soaked it in) a slideshow of her mother’s life.

Both beautiful. Both loved. Both lived long, fulfilled lives.

Both left grieving daughters and families.

Sometimes we have to say “yes” to looking deeper at what we can do for others.

Warmer connections come from the heart.

And when we actually learn to fulfill another’s need, it grows our hearts.

When’s the last time you let someone know that you cared?

(My friend, Sheila, from Eat 2 Gather, is providing 31 Days of Meals 4 Sharing, if you’re in a rut and need some fresh ideas on how and why to give to others. I’ve been blessed by her posts! I also have an entire section on “taking meals to others” in my book, The Reluctant Entertainer.)

If you missed previous days to 31 Days of Warm Connections …
Day 1: Secret Ingredient to Warmer Connections
Day 2: Bringing the Beauty of Autumn to Your Table
Day 3: Multi-Generational Pear Applesauce
Day 4: Canning Suncrest Peaches with a Friend
Day 5: How to Find Contentment
Day 6: Encouragement with Easy Pear Cobbler
Day 7: Bush’s Garbanzos, Chicken, and Quinoa Soup for a Sports Family
Day 8: More About Others
Day 9: Technology Versus People
Day 10: The Table Experience with Bush’s Beans
Day 11: Dreaming of Autumn Guests
Day 12: Gathering Around a Homemade Life
Day 13: Sisters in New York City
Day 14: Giving to Those in Need
Day 15: Enjoying Everyday Sounds
Day 16: Life’s Small Moments
Day 17: Well-Designed Kitchen Counter
Day 18: “Now Time” and 5 Years at RE
Day 19: Taking a Chance and Chocolate Caramel Bars
Day 20: Harry and David, Nostalgia and Hospitality
Day 21: Even in a Messy House
Day 22: Happy Autumn at the Front Door

And be sure to check out the rest of the 31 Day Participants!

   

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12 Responses to “Warm Connections {Day 23}: Letting Others Know You Care”

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    Amy @ Feathered Friendsy — October 23, 2011 @ 5:21 am

    Sandy, this filled my heart with both sadness for these women and happiness at the same time. You are such a wonderful friend to do that for them in a time of extreme grief. I lost my mother recently and people like you in my own life have made a terrible loss more bearable. Thank God for people like you!

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    Michelle Erwin — October 23, 2011 @ 2:55 pm

    I was one of the women that received Sandy’s “Basket of Love”. My mother Carmen was just shy of her 92nd birthday when she passed last Friday. My mother was an amazing woman. She lived a life that spanned almost a whole century. She taught the importance of a generous heart and spirit. Sandy’s choice of spaghetti and meat sauce brought me back to my youth. Mom would prepare gigantic pots of this classic to serve her six hungry children. My mother also showed me what it means to be a great friend and how to spot one. I’m sorry she didn’t get to meet Sandy and all my other girlfriends who are walking with me now. Mom, thank you for helping me choose the special women in my life. I know you now among the “Cloud of Witnesses”
    Love you girl,
    Michelle

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    Lady Dorothy — October 23, 2011 @ 4:49 pm

    Thank you for sharing the link to Meals 4 Sharing! That is a fantastic series!

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    Polly — October 23, 2011 @ 6:47 pm

    I LOVE this post. The icecream made me smile so. What a gift you have for sharing comfort. Thank you for inspiring us to do the same.
    Blessings,

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    Mary — October 23, 2011 @ 7:27 pm

    Oh Sandy, how wonderful your giving of a meal was. Your friends are so blessed to have you in their lives. You have helped to comfort them so much during these difficult times. I can only imagine their grief and my heart goes out to them.

    We live in such hectic times that we can forget how important it is to slow down and show others that we care for them. Even if it’s in a simple way. Tonight my son and I joined my girlfriend and her daughter to attend a cookbook signing at William Sanoma cooking store. Both children are 13. My friend’s daughter is a polished young lady. My son is a tall, thin, all legs and arms, always hungry boy. They were the only children at the event. When my son saw all the free samples of food and beverages, he dove in. He ate and drank with abandon and zoomed around the fragile plates and glasses at break neck speed telling one of the sales ladies (between gulps) that this was the best store he ever went to! He droped crumbs and more here and there and spilled more than his fare share of sparkling water and cider.

    Feeling a bit frantic I was about to reprimand him, but then the words of our parish priest echoed in my ears…”Live your life in the manner of St. Francis … Sow the seeds of peace and love.” I looked at my sweet son who was just doing what he knew how to do best…be a boy. I walked over to him, hugged him, kissed him, and said, “You are a good boy and I love you so much!”. Between bites he said with a smile…”Thanks Mom. I love you too.”. He made my night.

    Love,

    Mary

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    Sheila @Eat2gather — October 23, 2011 @ 7:40 pm

    You are such a blessing to so many!

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    Trisha — October 23, 2011 @ 10:16 pm

    I love this post, and God bless you for being such a blessing to your friends! After losing a very close family member and suffering a miscarriage (within days of one another), I was so encouraged to receive a box of my favorite scones and a precious card from a dear friend who is a college student. Her thoughtfulness amazed me and reminded me of how these seemingly small acts of thoughtfulness are so BIG to the one who is hurting. What a wonderful way to show the love of Jesus to one another.

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    Lauren@SimplyLKJ — October 24, 2011 @ 3:55 am

    I love this post Sandy! What a sweet thing to take a basket/box that shows you really put some thought into it to friends who are hurting. I love the idea of taking an easy meal they can prepare when they have the time, rather than casseroles that might go uneaten because they receive so many. I think this would be a lovely idea for a mother who is in the midst of a hectic week, an unexpected surprise.

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    StephanieB — October 24, 2011 @ 12:22 pm

    I could definitely do this for a friend of mine who is pregnant. She could use a meal or hand around the house. Thanks for the nudges to get out there and love better.

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    Betsy @ Romance on a Dime — October 25, 2011 @ 7:13 am

    I love these ideas and the thought you put behind your gifts. It’s also a good idea to give a physical gift, but then a gift of your time. Sometimes, we don’t always know how to help the person that is grieving – what to say to them or what to do. These are great ideas.

    Thanks for sharing!!!!

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    Sheila @Eat2gather — January 26, 2012 @ 10:14 pm

    Thanks for the link up! You are such an inspiration and encouragement to me. Thankful God put you in my life.

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