New Year, Old Values

hand-children-child-child-s-hand-159827So I just read my newspaper from New Year’s–don’t judge, I had a lot of football and family going on–and I opened my Parade magazine to find “Let’s Make 2017 the Year of Being Kind.”

That’s a swell idea but I may have laughed out loud, sitting at my kitchen table, reading. Because suddenly, people being kind to one another has become a trend. And we have all sorts of templates and books and specially made cards to help us remember to be kind.


I can remember sitting in the kitchen of my childhood home, after a particularly hurtful day at school, and hearing my mother say (for probably the millionth time): “Be kind, fair maid, let him who will be clever.”

Now, the quote is actually “Be good, sweet maid, and let who will be clever” from a poem by Charles Kingsley. But I’m sure Mom thought the word kindness worked better in that quote, or at least, in trying to explain to her children the importance of being kind to people instead of retaliating in some hurtful way.

She preached kindness every day, and my teachers did, too. When I think about it, most of the adults I knew growing up–family and friends–not only preached kindness but lived it. And so we grew up understanding the value of kindness, and we taught that value to our children.

I’m very glad that the old-fashioned trait of kindness was instilled in me and those I love. And for those who may have forgotten, or perhaps didn’t grow up with kindness, I hope that the Parade articles and templates and quotes will inspire all to begin the best new habit ever.

So Happy New Year’s, y’all! And may 2017 flow with kindness (and lovely acceptances)!