The Washington Post
For a small act of kindness, all you can do is say ‘thanks’ — and pay it forward
Today’s Sound On is about the magical words “thank you.”
Dear Heloise: I recently went to a meeting at my church and heard a speaker talking about the importance of gratitude. She asked how many of us had ever had a flat tire and had a stranger stop to help change it, or been a dollar short at the grocery store and had a person in line give us the money we needed. Several in the audience raised their hands. She said that maybe all we could do was say “thank you” when the stranger refused to take money for their help.
So go ahead and thank them and pass it on. When it’s your turn to help someone, remember those who helped you and “pay it forward.” The only reward you should expect is to feel good that someone in need was better off because you reached out to them. You may never know if you saved their life, or helped them feed their family, or ensured they got home safely, but you’ll always know you performed an act of kindness by passing it on.
— Gracie R., Austin
Dear Readers: Got an extra eyeglass case? Here are some uses for them:
• Hold small dental supplies or toothpicks.
• Hold extra tissues.
• Store a couple of pens inside.
• Store loose change.
Dear Heloise: We have a long driveway and walkway from the street to our house. Instead of trying to sweep or shovel a light snowfall, we use our leaf blower. It’s easier than a shovel and less work than sweeping.
— Micky W., Albuquerque
Dear Heloise: When I got my new washer and dryer, I called every church and charity I could find to offer a washer and dryer that was still in perfect condition and only six years old. No one wanted these two appliances. When it was time for “bulk pickup” in our city, I managed to get both appliances out to the curb by 1 o’clock the day before pickup. By 2 o’clock that same day, the washer and dryer were gone! If I’d known how easy it was to get rid of those appliances I would have put them out there a few months
— Kate C., San Antonio
Dear Heloise: My husband’s shaving cream always left a rust stain on my bathroom tile, and it was difficult to remove. Finally, I got a foam can holder — the kind used on cold beer and soda cans — and put his shaving cream can in one of those foam containers. No more rusty stains!
— Frances P., Warren, Ohio
Dear Heloise: Sometimes I need a toothpick after a meal, but many restaurants don’t provide those anymore. So I took the lipstick out of an old tube of lipstick and placed several toothpicks inside. Now I can retire to the ladies room and make certain there is no spinach stuck to my teeth.
— Loretta S., Bend, Ore. Heloise’s column appears six days a week at washingtonpost.com/advice.
Send a hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 782795000, or email it to Heloise@heloise.com.