Random Acts of Kindness Day 2024

Random Acts of Kindness Day 2024

I have a perfect memory for terrible things and a terrible memory for perfect things. I don't think it's a special skill, I think it's the human condition to aid our survival... stick your hand in that pretty red flow-y super hot thing and you'll remember never to do it again, you know, that sort of let's stay alive and continue the species level of innate understanding rather than all simply being just miserable sods.

But as it's been raining now for 800 days, the evenings are never going to get brighter and I've been on a bit of a low I thought I should channel some PollyAnna level shit and then I saw that the "Random Acts of Kindness" Day is on the 12th of February and figured I should do a bit of reflection on kindness in general.

If this bit of writing/stream of consciousness does nothing but slow you down for 10 minutes to ponder random good in the past and, perhaps, to think of random kindnesses you can do in return then I'd be very happy indeed.

As it's my blog,  I'll start... here are some random acts of kindness that have stuck with me over the years.

There I was, wedding day, in full on ivory silk with a crown (yeah, I had crown - sort of) being driven down the Goldhawk Road with my dad by my side in companionable silence.  We stopped at some lights by Shepherd's Bush Market and a woman came out from her stall, knocked on my window and shouted

"You look gorgeous love, good luck to ya, and look at your dad all proud, good luck to ya love!"

It felt like I'd gone back in time to an old Ealing Comedy, especially as she had a fag on and was gesticulating wildly with it to ensure I was in no doubt that it was me whom she was wishing well.  Still, stuck with me ever since and I can often be found giving very enthusiastic thumbs up to any brides I happen upon. #payingitforward

There was the time that I lost my purse on Oxford Street and I sat down upstairs on a packed routemaster.  The conductor came around and I, aged about 12 I guess started to panic as I searched every pocket, every section of my bag for my purse, tears starting to well up as I realised it was going to be a very long walk home and the man sitting next to me just wearily took some change out of his pocket and handed it to the conductor who wordlessly handed me a ticket.  I said thank-you but he clearly didn't want it mentioned again and so I sat in a sad slump but so grateful to him for his generosity.  I bloody loved that purse too.

When I started learning to drive, I did a reverse around a corner.  A woman who had stopped, I assume to watch in idle curiosity or someone with an overly sensitive radar for self preservation (she was on the other side of the road) came over after I'd come to a stop and said 'that was perfect' and carried on with her day.  I often think of her when I'm reversing into tricky spots and the memory always makes me smile.

And then there was the insanely beautiful model wearing nothing more than a couple of silk handkerchiefs judiciously placed who helped me keep the loo door closed with her strappy stiletto'd perfect little feet.  The buzz cut meaty bloke who could see my embarrassment when I realised I was in the wrong lane just before the lights (having whizzed past standing traffic) and let me cut in with a gentle flourish and open smile. The dude who saw me having a panic attack just in front of the stage at a Cure concert, grabbed me and pulled me out before wordlessly barging his way back in.  The card we got through our door to thank us for daily delighting with our magnolia tree (it's a mighty fine tree and we take our custody very seriously but still feel the card was a lovely touch).  The woman who secretly paid to upgrade our eldest's set lunch on their second day in Japan last week.  The hand-stitched owl that a customer sent to me that accompanied my eldest to Japan.  The grieving customer who sent me flowers because I'd simply taken an extra beat in helping her with gifts at the funeral. Then there's the amazing reviews, the supportive emails, the friendly chatter on socials. The comments on this blog and the list goes on...

There's a foundation with a website dedicated to the Random Acts of Kindness thing - worth a look if you can't think what to do but would like to get involved.  I like to think that we do a lot of these things anyway and as I searched through some of them I couldn't help but think that a bunch of daffs for a stranger is probably one of the nicest things.  But I also like the idea of micro-affirmations - I don't know if that's a thing, I feel like I've just made it up, but as someone who tries to smile at absolutely everyone (I'm blind as a bat so figure it's possible I know you anyway), I get a lot of smiles in return.  I have been on a personal quest for over a year now to make every cab driver I encounter laugh - some have proven incredibly tough nuts to crack but I think I'm on 100% (son says it was a derisory snort but I heard a laugh!).  I like to think I do kind things, but then sometimes I feel like an out an out bitch, so swings and roundabouts, swings and roundabouts.

Personally, I think that a lot of the stuff we do at Chiswick Gift Co. is perfect for random acts of kindness... and judging by the words that I write in our gift cards on a daily basis, you're already enacting this kindness lark to perfection - the messages are very rarely 'Happy Birthday/Valentine's/Christmas', they're usually a 'you can do this', 'reminded me of you', 'thinking of you,' 'just because.' Sometimes they make me smile and sometimes they make me cry but I feel incredibly privileged to play my small part.
There's an offer we're doing in the lead up to the 12th to help you spread the love.  Check out our socials or sign up to our newsletter (go to the bottom of our home page and pop your email address into the box) for more information.  But even if you don't put any money into your random act of kindness, I hope you'll at least let that person out in the traffic or give a passing bride a big thumbs up 👍

I'd love to hear any stories, however micro, what random act of kindness sticks with you?

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Love your blog, your products and your approach to life! I have a sticker on my dashboard which says ‘practise random acts of kindness’ and it helps me to try to be nice on the roads and during my day’s out – like you, I sometimes struggle! If we tune into micro-acts, there are so many happening around us, all the time, every day. Keep on chugging with your wonderful work. ✨️


Great Blog! While walking my friends dogs, I often tell people how fab they look/hair/clothes etc. So much more open when I have a dog with me xxx

Mo Read

the random act of kindness that really landed recently was that very lovely note and keyring that you put in my order, Sarah. I did have a little cry, felt ”seen, heard and understood” and just a little bit less alone in the horrific maze of panic disorder. Keep being you and spreading your light, it lands in unexpected places and its impact ripples out…. you also make banging products that make me laugh out loud so a massive THANK YOU!!❤️


I love an act of kindness and often I do random acts of crochet kindness (there’s a couple of FB groups if anyone is interested) where people like me crochet little things like flowers, butterflies, hearts, worry worms and the like and leave them lying in random places for people to find. Usually accompanied with a little note along the lines of ’I’m not lost, just alone, if I made you smile, take me home.’ These often find the people that need them and knowing that really gives you a lovely feeling. I love to make a pile and take them with me when I take my granddaughter (8) out. It’s a lovely activity to do together!


I’ve always believed that the residents of my home town aren’t particularly nice people, and I think this has confirmed that because in my local day to day life I can’t think of anything! I have to actually recall visits to London where I have been both the giver and recipients of random acts of kindness. A few visits back I was on a tube and getting off at the same stop was a woman with two small kids, a pushchair and a tiny little bike. She clearly had her hands full so asked her if she needed a hand as she resignedly eyed the escalators, before informing her that the station was actually a step free one and directed her towards the lifts. Her face lit up when she learned there were lifts. The times I’ve been the recipient have always been through independent businesses (London based, and of which you are one!) going above and beyond with their customer care, giving me extra freebies and generally being lovely and making me feel valued as a customer 😊❤️


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