The Kindness of Strangers….

“Sometimes when we are generous in small  ways, it can change someone else’s life forever.”

This saying rings true for a very special woman I have had the pleasure of getting to know this past year.  Truth be told, I would never have had the honor of knowing her if not for her generosity and kindness to everyone she meets.  Her kind and generous ways have changed my life forever.  Let me explain…

I am talking about my friend and the owner of this website, Allison Alexander.It was just about a year ago that Allison’s path crossed with mine.  I was involved in an event committee for a local fundraiser to celebrate the life of Camden A. Fry, a beautiful eight-year-old girl who was killed in August of 2009.  It was my responsibility to reach out to the local television and radio personalities to line up emcees for different time slots throughout the day.   As time passed quickly, I was still coming up empty in being able to obtain any television personalities for the event, and needless to say, I was becoming a little FRANTIC as the event date was less than a month away!

Well, it was around that time that I received an email from Allison, who at the time was an evening news anchor in Providence, Rhode Island.  Allison was unable to attend on that date, but through her kind efforts she went the extra mile for me and not only arranged for an emcee for that day, but she also kept in touch with me until the event arrived.  I still cannot thank her enough for her help and generosity.

The kindness of strangers is what I think of when I look back on this moment in time.  We not only have stayed in touch with each other, but any chance she could do something out of the goodness of that big heart of hers, she would.  She arranged for my son to tour her television station for his birthday, and not only did she show him around the station and introduce him to everyone there, but she also  let him sit and watch the news broadcast, LIVE.  She made my son and me feel welcome and special that day. Words cannot express how much that meant to us.

Just recently, she asked me to be part of a wonderful new adventure in her life.  Allison was developing her own website www.amomknowsbest.com, which is a website not only geared toward moms, but also toward women, in general.   I was touched and honored not only that she asked me to be a contributor, but that she thought I might have something interesting to offer.  It has been an opportunity for me to express my thoughts on many different subjects including divorce, parenting and friendship.    It has also given me the chance to meet the other amazing women who contribute to the website and who have  become my friends.  I thank Allison every day for giving me this creative outlet which has changed my life and my outlook on life as well.

Over the past year, I have gotten to know Allison and she has become a wonderful friend.  She is a person that looks at you and sees all the good in you, all the promise in you and makes you see it too.  She is a diamond in the rough, and I am a better person for having met her.   Allison recently moved with her family out of Rhode Island.  Although I am very sad about her leaving,  I know that through my contribution to her website, and because of the kind of person that she is, we will remain friends and in each other’s lives for a long time.  As I have told her, she is a bright star that only gets brighter…

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Why You Should Never Let a Friend Stay With You

As many of you know, I’m leaving the beautiful state of Rhode Island.  Actually, I’ve already left.  Maybe it’s for good, maybe not.  I only know that four years ago, I never would have guessed I’d even visit Little Rhody, much less live there.  But, my friend and former News Director in Cleveland asked me to come…and so I did.  As with almost any new project I take on, or job I start, I was looking forward to all the possibilities… the new station, the new people, the rich Providence history, the ocean.  It would be a lie though if I didn’t tell you that it was also with a bit of trepidation. What if I didn’t make new friends?  What if the people were snotty? I have moved SO. MANY. TIMES. Every time I say the same thing to my husband.  I’ll never make friends like my old friends. And I don’t.  I make different friends.

You know how they say your heart just opens up to allow yourself to love ALL your children as much as you loved the first?  THAT’S how I feel about my friends, but I digress.  I lived in Rhode Island for a solid year…a very lonely year before it happened.  My husband worked out of state and I felt isolated.  Admittedly, I worked a tough schedule to go out and socialize (anchoring evenings), and I’m not really a bar girl, but I finally decided to pull on my big girl panties and stop feeling sorry for myself and go out and make some darn friends.  It didn’t happen overnight, but it did happen and these women are amazing.

Heart Ball at Newport Mansions

Leaving for the Heart Ball

Newport Mansions

How could you not feel like a princess here?

My last week in Rhode Island has been one of my best yet.  Maybe it had something to do with my last minute invite to the exclusive  Heart Ball set at one of the majestic Newport mansions.  I should note, when I told my pals I couldn’t possibly go because all my formal attire was packed up, they said they’d find something for me to wear.  And they did.

Great gift baskets

Or maybe it was the fabulous luncheon the aMomKnowsBest contributors held for me the day before, where they put together a much appreciated gift basket for my big road trip.  Notice the gas gift card, wine, and scented lotion.  Let’s face it, when you are piling in the car with your husband, dog, and toddler, for a road trip that includes logging thousands of miles– with no real destination in sight–  gas money, wine, and smelling good are all necessities.  Did I mention how I have the best contributors and friends EVER?  While I didn’t get to connect with everyone in my final week in RI, I did get to spend some quality time with a few close friends.

girls having fun

Now, when I say I got to spend quality time with my friends…I really mean quality time. We had to be out of our house last week, so my friend Elizabeth invited us to stay with her family.  For those of you keeping track, that’s four adults, five kids and two dogs in ONE house.

I cannot explain how grateful I am to Elizabeth’s family and how much we enjoyed our time there. She may never invite us back (watch this short clip to see why) but knowing the kind of friend Elizabeth is, I think she will.

 

 

Getting Gorgeous in New York City

New York City

It’s going to be a fun weekend. Today, several of the contributors and I are piling in Carrie’s SUV and heading to New York City where we will meet up with Katrina for a day of fashion, fun & beauty…oh, and pampering!  Two of my friends are putting on a spectacular event in the city called Getting Gorgeous, and it is going to be fabulous!  Audrey McClelland & Vera Sweeney are the masterminds behind the event and, to be honest, I’ve never even met Vera before–but any friend of Audrey’s is a friend of mine.

This will actually be my first “event” as a blogger and I can speak for all of the ladies of  A Mom Knows Best when I say we are thrilled to get a little R&R, meet some other wonderful women and engage with the terrific brands that will be in attendence.  I really have to give Audrey & Vera  a hand for choosing terrific companies to allign themselves with.  We’re talking Degree, Lifetime Moms, Hanes, Sandals Resorts (BTW, who else is DYING for a vacation after our recent snow in New England?) Weight Watchers & Goody Hair…just to name a few!dad NYC

After hanging with the girls all day, my husband and baby will pick me up and we’ll spend the night with our good friends who have a daughter just two weeks younger than Paige.  The babies always have such a great time together and it’s so fun to see them interact!  Sunday I have a business lunch at a great little restaurant I’ve been dying to try, right by the water, before heading back to Rhode Island.  Crossing my fingers that Paige sleeps a little in the car.  She’s typically good for about an hour…that’s it.  Maybe it’s time to invest in one of those portable DVD players…although since she’s never seen a movie it might kind of freak her out.

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