Tuesday, November 11, 2008


You might think that with a project like Deliberate Acts of Kindness I would know all the synonyms, adjectives and kindness clichés on the planet. And yet I am struggling. I want to give you the essence of Maryann so you can appreciate how kindness changes the way we live in the world.

One of wonderful emanations of the dakband project are the impromptu gifts of encouragement we receive from people we’ve never met. People who have received a dakband (or two), gone to the site to share their story and are so excited by the project that they email us their congratulations. For example, I was blown away when Heidi (Sacred and Profane) posted our button on her blog, and even blogged about the dakbands! Which led to Rhea (Texas Word Tangle), the SITS Girls (the SITS Girls), and Cheryl (Marching to a Different Drummer), sending us tidings of encouragement. Most of the time, it is a brief, uplifting, yet somewhat anonymous note, meaning the sendee isn’t really expecting a reply. However, the first note I received from Maryann - which was followed a few days later by a telephone call – was loud. But not an in-your-face-obnoxious loud, it was a big, round, yellow, warm, life-is-so-full-of-surprises loud. She basically said, “I want to meet you!”

Call me crazy, but I soon found myself driving down to have lunch with her and friend – Maryann has lots of friends. Well, you would have thought I discovered penicillin. Her vision and enthusiasm for the project was so HUGE. By end of the afternoon I kind of felt like I had discovered penicillin, and was about save humanity, so great was Maryann’s stroking of my reluctant ego. (However my family soon deflated my grandiose day dreams with their cries for dinner!) From that first meeting she has become a dak machine, purchasing bands, giving them to clients (she and her husband are financial planners), approaching retailers to sell them, contacting local papers, local schools, sitting for hours and selling them at fundraising events, and providing valuable feedback. She does all this at her own expense, with that same generous, beaming spirit that leapt off the page when I read her first email.

Please go to our track you dak page and pull up Financial Planning Etc. from the organization drop down list to see all the bands she has given away. Maryann has one band #30390 that has 4 stories attached to it!

If you know someone like Maryann please share your story as a comment and I will send you and your Maryann a set of bands!

….and when Maryann comes for dinner this Saturday we’ll read the stories together!


MaryAnn said...

Elaine... flattered and humbled come to mind. I really do consider it an honour not only to call you friend, but to be a part of this project. Can’t WAIT to share dinner and good conversation on Saturday.

Darcy @ LWM3B said...

This is awesome, Elaine!

Rhea is a bloggy friend of mine, and her enthusiasm is contagious. I'm exited to hear how DAKbands are making their way around the blogosphere.

heidi said...

Hooray for friends like Maryann! The world needs more people JUST like her.

I have sent out all of my dakbands and am going to need to head over and purchase MORE! My girls are so excited to give them to people that have shown kindness to them and to others around them. We can hardly wait until our bands start moving around!!