About This Blog

The inspiration for this blog came as a result of the profound sadness and grief I experienced following the tragedy that struck Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT on Friday, December 14th, 2012.

The tragedy left an indelible print on my heart and soul. The loss of life resonated way too deep because I too,  have made a career of educating and protecting children. I am an elementary school principal who is responsible for the emotional and physical safety of almost 500 children and staff.  My tears were for the families, educators, and community that will be forever changed. Forever broken.

The day after the tragedy, my husband and I held hands, counted our blessings, and  chose to begin our healing by attending a Christmas program at church.  In support of the program, we also chose to participate in the church’s Toy Drive for children. This meant in the hours before the program, we braved our way through crowded toy aisles in the local Target store to purchase several new toys.

The brief shopping spree was appalling.  The rudeness and hostility shoppers exhibited was disappointing. I was still feeling  raw and  vulnerable from the previous day’s news, and  naïvely assumed others would be as well.  One customer on a cell phone cut directly in front of me during checkout, and another snapped at me that I wasn’t moving through the line fast enough. It was after this point  I wanted to shout. I  wanted  to stand in the middle of the crowd  and wail: “Doesn’t anyone practice compassion anymore? What about a little joy or kindness? What about a Merry Christmas?”

After shopping, we continued on to enjoy a quick cup of coffee at Starbucks before the holiday program. Once at the Starbucks counter, I paid for my items and then almost without thinking,  pulled a $20 bill from my wallet. I handed it to the cashier and said: “Here, please pay for the coffees behind me. Merry Christmas.”

The barista was a little confused at first, but quickly caught on.  I then heard several customers say some kind words of thanks,  and another gave a quick, nervous little laugh. I quietly moved out of the fray, began to eat my snowman cookie, sip my latte, and chat with my husband.

It was then I began to ask if something as simple as a cup of coffee could really provide cheer to someone. I wondered, what would happen if  I bought a stranger’s coffee every day for a year? Could something so little bring some joy into someone’s day? Would this simple gesture prevent the bickering and bad attitudes I  encountered only minutes before while checking out at the Target store? Does paying it forward really make our world better?

I decided the generosity couldn’t hurt, so this blog was born. This is the beginning of 365 cups of kindness. This is a web log that I describe as Fully Caffeinated Generosity and Hope©. Thank you for joining me. Let’s  see where this journey takes us.




38 thoughts on “About This Blog

  1. bedraggledandkicking December 29, 2012 at 4:25 pm Reply

    What a sweet idea. I’d like to follow your lead. Maybe not every day, but next time I have the opportunity. I’d like to think that kindness does trickle down…

    • The Rock Tumbler December 29, 2012 at 5:09 pm Reply

      Thanks for stopping by, and for the kind words. Wishing you the best.

  2. Lily January 13, 2013 at 10:38 pm Reply

    You have a great heart. This is a perfect idea for a blog. Thanks for following mine. Glad you liked it 🙂

  3. maggiemq January 16, 2013 at 4:48 am Reply

    365 cups? Waow! Impressed, I’m trying to do some pay it forward, but to be honest in Norway people freak out for the smallest “random act of kindness”. So my mission this year is to try and do something to pay it forward every now and then!

    You are one great inspiration! Looking forward to be a follower for the next cups 😉

    Have a great day 🙂

  4. istopforsuffering January 21, 2013 at 1:05 am Reply

    I used to do this at my favourite coffee shop :-). I would pay for the coffee of the next senior citizen to come in. It was such a rewarding experience ♥

  5. Katie January 28, 2013 at 4:50 pm Reply

    Fabulous and kind! Love it!

    • The Rock Tumbler January 28, 2013 at 4:54 pm Reply

      @Katie, thanks so much for stopping by, and for the kind feedback. 🙂

  6. happsters January 28, 2013 at 6:48 pm Reply

    Just came across your blog. Such a great idea 🙂

    • The Rock Tumbler February 1, 2013 at 11:36 am Reply

      So glad you stopped by. Btw, I love your H-smile. It’s just awesome. 🙂

  7. Animus February 1, 2013 at 11:22 am Reply

    Feel across this blog and have to say, thank you. This is a beautiful, simple gesture that I am sure everyone appreciates. It’s always the small generosity from strangers which inspires the most. 😀 You have certainly given me an idea!

    • The Rock Tumbler February 1, 2013 at 11:35 am Reply

      Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to share such thoughtful comments. I’m happy to know you’ve found some new ideas and inspiration! I look forward to hearing your ideas and stories–yet to come. Wishing you the best. 🙂

  8. Easter Bunny February 18, 2013 at 5:38 pm Reply

    Love you blog. Excellent to see kindness channeled via a cup of coffee.

  9. The Rock Tumbler February 18, 2013 at 5:46 pm Reply

    Hey thanks Easter Bunny! I know it might not be much, but it’s something that I can consistently do each day, as it fits into a regular work week…and, who doesn’t love coffee? lol 🙂 Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

  10. Easter Bunny February 18, 2013 at 7:59 pm Reply

    I just nominated your blog for a Liebster Award. Details are on my blog. Congrats!

  11. davebrazz February 19, 2013 at 4:34 am Reply

    Fantastic idea….I love it!

  12. Cassandra April 9, 2013 at 12:08 am Reply

    What a beautiful story – such an inspirational response to a tragedy. Your small acts of kindness are helping to show people that love pervades and hope remains. Thank you.

  13. […] 365 Cups of Kindness. […]

  14. radhika235 June 12, 2013 at 3:09 am Reply

    I have nominated you for The Very Inspiring Blogger Award. I love your posts, and I hope you will accept this gesture from my end. My follow-up post is http://awarmplacewithin.wordpress.com/2013/06/07/award/.
    Have a lovely rest of your day!

  15. […] 10. 365 Cups of Kindness […]

  16. Lori Leigh Wilson June 12, 2013 at 4:53 am Reply

    Hey there! I love following along on your journey. You remind me that even small acts of kindness can have a huge impact. I’ve nominated you for a “Very Inspiring Blogger” award. Check it out at: http://lorileighwilson.com/2013/06/12/sharing-inspiration/

  17. Especially Made June 21, 2013 at 10:24 pm Reply

    Truly inspiring! It is amazing how even the most simple acts of kindness can turn a frown upside down. My children prove that to me all the time with all the simple and sweet things that they do.

  18. kiwiskan June 21, 2013 at 11:32 pm Reply

    Brilliant idea. Kindness is catchy

  19. The Lowe's RV Adventures June 22, 2013 at 5:45 am Reply

    Fantastic idea and inspiring.

  20. James June 22, 2013 at 7:12 am Reply

    Unfortunately, stories like yours are all too rare, whether related to Christmas or any other time of year. The commercial “feeding frenzy” of Christmas is just one of the many reasons why my family and I haven’t celebrated that particular holiday for a lot of years (one of the others is that I’m a Christian and my wife and children are Jewish). It seems as if all during the “Christmas shopping season,” people become grumpy, depressed, and rude. Hardly befitting the advent of the King of Kings and the Light of the World.

    I’m glad that you and a few other people in our environment are extending the kindness and grace of Jesus (in your case, one cup of coffee at a time), not because it’s a particular time of year, but because it’s the right thing to do. It opens the door to the Kingdom of Heaven just a crack, and lets us peek inside.


  21. coffeediva June 22, 2013 at 8:58 am Reply

    This is an amazing idea and I do believe you’re making a difference in the world! I can’t wait to read every blog entry! 🙂

    • The Rock Tumbler June 22, 2013 at 9:25 am Reply

      @CoffeeDiva. Wow, every blog entry? That’s fully-caffeinated dedication! Thanks for stopping by. Wishing you the best. 🙂

      • coffeediva June 22, 2013 at 9:47 am

        LOL. Yes that’s how I am. I don’t wanna miss a thing 🙂

  22. Jessica Renshaw June 22, 2013 at 12:49 pm Reply

    Thank you for shining this light in the darkness. I don’t even drink coffee but just hearing how you are blessing strangers blessed me!

  23. JoanMae June 24, 2013 at 11:25 pm Reply

    It’s like the story of the boy who throws starfishes back in the sea one at a time. Your 365 cups of kindness has really inspired me, making me also think what I can do to pay it forward. Cheers to many more cups of coffee!

  24. jaywindwalker June 25, 2013 at 4:35 am Reply

    Outstanding! Simply outstanding, God bless you!

  25. missediva June 28, 2013 at 9:46 am Reply

    I absolutely love this idea of paying it forward. I do believe the the little things count. When we slow down and focus on the little blessings, we can smile and let joy shine through. Thank you for sharing your cause and your journey!

  26. TheDoGooderMama July 8, 2013 at 12:29 pm Reply

    What a profound response to the Newtown tragedy. I, too, was deeply impacted by the shooting. My family had lived a few towns away from Newtown up until August of 2012. We had friends who had friends whose lives were forever changed. I love your idea of paying it forward and I do firmly believe that small acts of kindness such as this do change the world for the better. Next time I am at the Dunkin Donuts drive-through I will pay for the car behind me and think of you!

  27. […] 13: Can a cup of coffee create positive change in the world? Sharman at 365 Cups of Kindness is on a mission to find out and I think she is onto something.   Her idea, to buy a random person […]

  28. dylanmaustin July 18, 2013 at 2:43 pm Reply

    As a Starbucks partner, this inspired me. I am so surprised I haven’t seen your blog before. Thank you for what you do.

  29. beegee10 August 12, 2013 at 7:03 pm Reply

    Awesome …paying it forward!
    What a great way to share His Light!

    thank you for being an example 🙂

  30. Kiwi August 21, 2013 at 5:20 pm Reply

    Glad I stumbled upon this. Keep up the good work!

  31. D. September 4, 2013 at 1:01 pm Reply

    Wow, that’s a great idea 🙂 It is amazing how sometimes small and simple things work – a smile or a “how are you today?”. It’s magic 🙂

  32. proverbsway October 12, 2013 at 9:53 pm Reply

    I just wanted to say how much I have enjoyed reading all the posts – I love seeing folks spread love, and hope you know how much you’re inspiring others to do the same! What a blessing your acts of kindness are to many .. The ripple affects will go on and on. Love it! Just love it!!!

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