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

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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!