~these are the days of small acts of kindness~
In the small city near where we live, we venture to market every Thursday. We probably wouldn’t go quite so often but we have an mini-obsession with raw milk and that’s where we buy it. I’m also all about supporting small farmers and local vendors and so some weeks we visit other stands.
While I enjoy taking the kids with me when we go places, let’s be honest: it’s faster if I go myself. But since the kids are with me all day, to market, to market we go! I try to make the trip as quick as possible and not linger too much so feeding the meter a quarter gives us 15 minutes and forces us to move a bit quicker. If we’re parked close by and I just need to get milk, that’s enough.
I love the feeling of checking the meter after I park to realize there’s still time left on it. Even just a few extra minutes gives us some flexibility. Every once in a while we’ll park in a spot with 10-20 minutes on it. I love when that happens.
The bad part about metered parking is that they are quick to ticket you for being late. I learned that lesson when I was ten minutes late to my car when the kids and I were at the library. Seeing that white ticket on the car made my blood boil just a bit. (Correction, Eliana is proofreading with me and said from her perspective it boiled a lot). Really…a $20 fine for missing one quarter in the meter. And we were at the library for heaven’s sake! (as if that should matter to anyone).
The kids are constantly concerned about the meter, particularly Eliana (as she tends to the side of worry). Since getting our ticket, they have been extra careful, making sure to ask if we have enough in the meter and what time we need to be back to our car.
Today when we went to get our milk, she wanted to put three quarters in because we were parked a bit further and needed to go to a few places. I knew it was too much, but after getting a ticket, I figured it was better to play it safe. On the way back to the car, we were guessing how much time was left on our meter. I said at least twenty minutes, but the kids thought only five or ten. As we started walking on the last sidewalk towards our car, Eliana was looking at all the meters we passed. She started to report on how many had expired meters. There were actually quite a few, at least five but I lost count.
The more cars we passed, the more concerned Eliana seemed. When we got back to our car, she was sort of lingering around the stroller as I unloaded. I looked at her and asked her if she’d like to put some money in the meters. “Mom, that’s exactly what I was thinking!”
I’m not sure if she would have asked me first if I hadn’t prompted her. I was hoping she would. I don’t want my kids to ever have fear in asking something. Even if the answer is no, I want them to ask. I guess it doesn’t really matter if she was going to ask. We both had the same thought and followed through. I think whenever God prompts our hearts with these little inklings we should do what He asks, no matter how small or how insignificant it seems. We should have an audience of One, you know?
I gave her and Micah a handful of coins and they happily skipped down the street putting coins in the meters. It was also nice to be able to give them some freedom, even for something simple like crossing the small alley on the street by themselves.
She seemed relieved when she came back. Without saying as much, I’m pretty sure she felt happy that we could do something for someone else.
What do “these days” look like for you. Simply comment with one…these are the days of…
**If you want to check out the rest of my #write31days series, you can find the link here.