Thursday, November 3, 2011

Chrysanthemums and Kaleidoscopes

Something nice happened to me last week that I want to share.  I was waiting in line to pay for my groceries at Trader Joe's and a man with two large potted chrysanthemums came up to the line and asked if he could go ahead of me to pay for them.  I said sure, go ahead and then had a chance to take a good look at the flowers.

One of the pots had an unusual striped petal mum and I asked where he found the pots of flowers.  He said they were on a rack outside and he just noticed them when he was on the way out with his groceries.  I asked the cashier if it would be OK for me to run out and get a pot of the striped mums and the man said he thought that this was the last pot of that type, so I said, never mind...

There was some problem with the register and making change and it ended up taking quite a while but I didn't really mind since I wasn't in a hurry to be anywhere.  When they finally had the money sorted out, the man said, let me pay you for one more and I'll pick it up on my way out.  Then he turned to me and handed me the pot with the striped flowers and said, "this is for you."  I was so surprised - I hadn't been upset at all by waiting and I tried to give him the money for the flowers but he said, "no, I want you to have them!"

It was just a random encounter on a rather normal day but it sure made me feel happy - probably because the gift was so unexpected and kind.   I have had this lovely pot of flowers in my kitchen and I am really enjoying them because they are very pretty and because they remind me that there are a lot of just plain nice people in the world! 

I know I said I'd share some more about snowflakes today but I was looking through my photos and started playing around with a couple of photos of the mums.  I took the image into my Creative Memories StoryBook Creator software.  NOTE - Creative Memories is no longer in business and this software is now sold by the developer Panstoria as Artisan 4 and available HERE (affiliate link).  I made some pages that I'll turn into background paper.  I find it very relaxing to manipulate images and create new designs - for cutting or for printing.  I wish I could use the Imagine to print out things that I design at 12 x 12...maybe someday this will be possible.

I started with this square image and here are a few of the variations I came up with...

The kaleidoscope effect is created by copying and pasting the same image and flipping it either horizontally or vertically to create a symmetrical pattern.  The variations are limitless when you start to add special effects and create tiles of patterns.

Now I am on the lookout for a situation where I can do something unexpected for a stranger and maybe make their day a little happier.  I hope something nice happens to each of you - just when you least expect it.  If everyone did one nice thing for a stranger each week it would make an amazing difference in the world.

I have started on a really big project and may be a bit preoccupied over the next few weeks - it is a busy time but I am hoping to finish by the end of the month. I can't tell you about it yet - but I will tell you that I most definitely am not coming out with my own line of high quality photopolymer stamps!

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  1. What a nice story! The gentleman in front of you in line...paid it forward. What a nice way to make not only his day better, but yours also! We forget it doesn't take much. Thank you for sharing this wonderful story and loved the pics of the mums!

    I'm also anxious to hear and see your "secret" project. Have a wonderful day!

  2. I love it when things like that happen! That's the kind of thing that can make your day or week and you always remember. :)

    Kathryn had the last of your GF mac and cheese last night - she's a fan!

    - Melanie (your SIL)

  3. You must have some great karna around deserve the gesture!

    And aren't they stunning. The paper you created is beautiful. I know....print some off, and next time you're in line at Michaels or your LSS, hand out a few sheets to the person staning behind you!


  4. Thank you for sharing your story. Sometimes we get so involved in our own lives that we forget there are others around us with their own story. He touched your lives and now you will pay it forward and some of us will, too. A small gesture that could influence many lives! By the way, my favorite photo mix is the last one.

  5. Diane, What a lovely story! That kind man touched you and is still touching others through the retelling of this story. I agree, small kindnesses are gifts that continue to touch us long after they were given. Another gift we all have the power to give is a smile! I think we have forgotten is how powerful a genuine smile is! Cost us nothing but the effort and the reward for both us and the receiver might be the difference between having a good day or a bad day.

    Can't wait to hear what's up and keeping you busy. I'm sure it will be great.
    MCF's Mimi

  6. I always let people go in front of me when they only have a few things. Especially since any line that I happen to be in is going to be the slowest one in the store. I enjoy people watching anyway.
    The colors of those flowers are so vibrant.
    Thanks for sharing them. Thena from San Diego often does fun manipulations with her pictures @ times.

  7. What an awesome thing to do. I often think of random acts of kindness and just never seem to follow through with them. It would be the best feeling in the world if people would start doing this on a regular basis. Even something that costs a dollar will put a smile on someone's face all day. Thanks for sharing this story.

  8. Hmmm , a secret, are you going to start your own paper line? Im sure you could do it. Love what you did with the mums. Awesome.
    finally installed 4.0 I played and made a scrapbook page. It was only a test- one photo printed way too big and my sentiment was cut off Should be fun to figure it all out.
    Dawn RI

  9. It is so true that we CAN impact others so easily - a smile or letting someone go in front in the line - there are good people out there and I try to be one of them! Thanks for sharing!

  10. Well, it made my day to read about your random act of kindness encounter with a complete stranger! Something like that reaffirms my belief in the inherent goodness of most people.

    Wendy T.

  11. What a sweet man. I bet it made your day...BEAUTIFUL flowers
    Thank you for sharing your special story.
    Linda in Stanwood

  12. What a wonderful story and totally random! God bless that man and glad it made your day!

  13. What a nice surprise when unexpected things like this happen -- it's just get special feeling you can't explain it to anyone; they have to experience it themselves. I'm so glad this happened to you...You're always so willing to share you creations and talents with everyone. The flowers are georgeous and you and a great job recreating them!!!

  14. I try my best to do something nice to someone each day. It always makes me feel so good. I love your story. I'm soooo glad to hear you aren't coming out with your own stamp line!

  15. Nice story. You never know when an act of kindness will be rewarded. The mums are beautiful.

  16. What a great gift. I think the unexpected gifts, especially from unexpected/unknown people, are really the best.

    Great background papers made from beautiful flowers.

    You are so good as seeing things different from what they really are. My sister tried really hard to teach me that before she passed away, but it is a challenge I work on constantly and thank her everytime I succeed.


  17. What a heart warming story! It's the unexpected random acts of kindness that touch your heart and soul! I'm sure the gentleman was remembering that "it is more blessed to give than receive." The mums are absolutely beautiful! I've never seen that particular pattern. TFS.

  18. Thank you for sharing that wonderful story. It reminds me that there are still beautiful people in this world and I should try harder to be one of them.
    I absolutely love the manipulatons that you have created from such a wonderful gift.


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