friendly friday: our mailman

{photo credit}

Because of potty training, OBoy spent a good portion of August nekkid from the waist down. Obviously we put pants on him to go out to stores, restaurants, church, etc., but we quickly became those parents. You know, the ones whose children run around in their yard half nekkid? Yup. Those ones.

No shame.

The weather was beautiful, our son was making fabulous progress in potty training, and well, he’s two. What little two year old boy doesn’t want to run around outside without pants on? Hello, OBoy’s dream come true. So like the klassy neighbors that we are, we embraced it.

We live in the city, where lot sizes are a fairly uniform (and small) 40ftx120ft. This makes for some dense housing (as in if my neighbor and I both reached our arms out our living room windows we could almost high-five). Add to that the fact that our houses were built in the 1920s and 30s so they have built-in mail slots, and it means that our mail deliverers walk from house to house rather than drive to mailboxes along the street. (Isn’t that cute? I grew up in the Suburbia of Suburbias, USA and had never seen walking mailmen or women before college. True story.)

Cut to DanO and OBoy drawing with sidewalk chalk on a sunny Saturday afternoon. Up walks our regular mailman. Now, I wasn’t there so I can’t be sure, but my guess is that it was either the green molded plastic toddler potty seat they had with them outside, or it was the fact that OBoy was, again, nekkid, that tipped the mailman off.

“Potty training, huh?”

DanO and he went on to talk about how our mailman’s grandsons were in the process of training, and how cheerios had become a family favorite for, uhm, aiming reinforcement.

Later that week his delivery was timed just as I was leaving the house with the boys for the morning. This time, OBoy was fully dressed. Our mailman stopped to chat with him.

“How’s potty training going, young man?”

Like a scene straight out of Sesame Street, our neighborhood postman asked my son about going on the potty.

What a sweet man. I imagine his is a somewhat thankless job, given that most of the people he affects aren’t even home at the time that he serves them. And please, I don’t even want to think about what his job looks like in the winter here in Minnesnowda.

Since that interaction (which had me checking over my shoulder to see if Mr. Noodle was going to show up next or perhaps might the birds break out into the ABCs?) I had hoped to do something special for him, but hadn’t gotten around to it until last week. I made muffins on Wednesday morning, put a few in a box and wrote a simple card that told our mailman how grateful we are for his work and that we love seeing his face around the neighborhood.

Then, I staked out by the front windows where I could see our walkway. In the early afternoon when both boys were napping (miracle upon miracles!) I heard the familiar metal clang of our mail slot. I darted to the door and caught him halfway to our neighbor’s house.

“We made you some pumpkin muffins. Just wanted to thank you for being so friendly.”

Not going to lie, it was awkward. (I imagine this kind of thing doesn’t happen to him everyday.) There was a moment of you shouldn’t have and then a sincere smile from both of us. Silly, probably, to think that some muffins and being a dork, keeping lookout and waiting by the window could make a difference, but I hope that it did. I hope that it gave him just a little glimpse of what he means to the community he serves.

:: :: :: :: :: ::

Did you step out and do a friendly act this week? I would love to read about it. Please link up here. Only rule is that you link to the post about your act of kindness, not just to your main blog url, that way if people are surfing through in the future, they’ll still find your post. Then, within your post, link back to this post so that others can come join in the giving and the sharing and the love.

(Any links that don’t follow the rulesies will be deleted. Capiche?) 

So? Go ahead! Warm fuzzies all around! Link up below:

11 Responses to “friendly friday: our mailman”

  1. Charlotte Anne

    Working on having my blog up and running so I can’t link up but wanted you to know you inspired me to do something nice. We ordered pizza with a total of 18 something and I tipped the delivery man 20. I could tell it made his night! Great idea Allison!

  2. Ashley

    I love this meme. It always makes me feel so good inside when I make someone elses day. I especially love to do it anonymously. That’s the best!

  3. abby

    I love this story. It really did sounds like Sesame Street:) That was a great idea. Mail people have such a thankless job. When I worked at the bank and one of our trusted customers would come in with baked goods just for the heck of it, it always made our day. Its those little things that keep people smiling! Great job going beyond your comfort zone!

  4. sidnie

    I love that OBoy lives on Sesame Street! :)
    Adults could learn a whole lot from Sesame Street these days…. Like kindness, for one.

    This is a great idea, Allison. I look forward to teaching the boys to spread a little kindness too.

  5. Elizabeth

    I love Friendly Fridays! My kids and I baked pumpkin spice cookies this week and delivered them to our elderly neighbor who broke her wrist recently. She was so grateful for the cookies and our company and I could tell my kids were so proud to give her the cookies. Thanks for the inspiration!

  6. Amanda

    My grandpa is in the hospital with a kidney infection and kidney stones, and thanks to your inspiration we stopped by to visit my grandma this morning. :) Dropped off a card and a book for my grandma to borrow (1000 Gifts!). Love this idea, and can’t wait to see how God uses it.

  7. Christa

    I have baked cookies for my garbageman. Another tough job in Minnesota weather. Our church gave us a card to do a drive through difference and need to get out today and use it. Love your post.

  8. mama marchand

    That is just about the sweetest story ever. I love that he knew exactly what you were doing and I love that you gave him something special for it! It’s moments like this that restore my faith in man’s ability to be decent. :)

  9. Margaret

    I paid for the car behind me in a drive-through on Thursday. Something struck me as I pulled up that the person behind me needed to know that there are nice people in the world. The employee hadn’t encountered a request like mine before. He seemed very excited to share the news with the person behind me. :)


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