We all know the concept of Paying it Forward, right? It’s where you do a good deed for someone in hope that they will see the kindness and in turn do a good deed for someone else – kind of a ripple effect. Regardless of if the payee does pay it forward, I like to instill in my kids the value of doing good deeds. And while we try to do them at home, it is just as important that we do them while traveling too.
To spread the love even further…..
When we completed our Bigger Than Texas Road Trip, which encompassed over 4600 miles and seven states, we had a goal: We wanted to spread the Texas Love. Ok, what?
6Ways to Pay it Forward while Traveling
1. Pick up trash – From the bottom of the Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico to standing in line at Disneyland to the river beds of the Lower Animas River in Durango, CO – these kids became naturals at scooping up stray trash and finding a bin to put it in. Without Momma asking…..
4. Laundry Help – We looked for fun ways to give back too. Doing laundry on the road was difficult. It was time consuming and expensive. We had purchased too much laundry detergent, so we thought it would be nice to leave it behind for the next weary traveler. And then my daughter came up with the idea to leave our stack of extra quarters behind too!
At the USS Midway Museum in San Diego, several of the volunteers are Veterans and we were able to thank them. But the coolest moment happened at the Planes of Fame Museum in Chino, CA. My son had the opportunity to hear from a former B-17 ball turret gunner who flew 30 missions in WWII before being hit by flak. He was in awe of his stories, asking him several questions. And afterwards went up to him to shake his hand and thank him for his service to our country.
So we left her a big tip and then left. We didn’t wait around to see her reaction or get a “thank you.” I explained to the children that we do good deeds because people deserve them and not because we want to see the reaction. Sometimes, we just knowing in our hearts that we did something nice was all the reward we needed.
When we started planning our “Bigger Than Texas Road Trip”, it was all about what we would receive out of a trip of this magnitude. Setting our sites on Paying It Forward on the trip rewarded us more than we had ever hope. And it made up realize the importance of having a mindset of doing for others rather than it be all about what’s in it for me. It’s a life lesson that I hope my children will maintain.