kindness activist

kindness activist

Monday, April 4, 2016

Pesto Kindness

It was October 2009 and autumn was definitely here.  Most of our vegetable garden was done and gone (or dead) but the basil remained.  We had planted a large basil crop in the hopes of making homemade PESTO.  We had basil.  We had olive oil.  We had pine nuts, garlic, salt, and pepper…  But we lacked one thing:  a food processor.  Yeah, sort of the most important part was missing…  And we didn’t really have the funds to invest in one, nor the STORAGE SPACE to pack it away once we were done using it. 

Farmer Dave at the beginning of a season (photo obviously not taken in October)
Preparing the garden

Look!  REAL veggies from our very own GARDEN!

So I got creative and sent this email out to our neighborhood listserve:

“Help! Autumn is obviously here and we need to harvest the basil and turn it into PESTO. Does anyone have a food processor we could borrow? We promise to return it clean and in the same condition we borrowed it and if we can borrow it today we could return it tonight. Anyone - please?   Susan”

It didn’t take long before Elaine, a neighbor I had never met, replied.  She said:

"Hi!  Just got home and found  your message.  If you haven't already found a food processor, you can borrow ours.  Give us a call at ....   Elaine."

This is HER, Elaine, the really kind neighbor!!

A COMPLETE STRANGER WAS WILLING TO LET US BORROW HER KITCHEN EQUIPMENT!!  No strings attached and no qualms about it!  We called and rushed over to pick it up.

Preparing the basil takes quite a while!


This is a small part of the annual basil crop.  Basil grows well at our house!!

Well, that was 7 pesto making seasons ago.  We have contacted Elaine once a year ever since and borrowed that same hard working food processor.  Each year we have “repaid” her with a sealed bag of very fresh pesto.   I still probably wouldn’t recognize her if we crossed paths in the grocery store.  But each fall, when we see the basil in the garden getting out of control, I think, “It’s time to email Elaine!!”.  And every year she is as nice as the previous. 

HOMEADE PESTO IS DELICIOUS!  We seal it in these freezer bags and eat it year round!
Thank you for being so kind Elaine.  Not everyone would be willing to share with a stranger.  Honestly, probably 50 people read that email and YOU replied.  You trusted us and were willing to be kind and SHARE.  It is people like you that make the neighborhood (and the world!) a fun place to be.  We appreciate your thoughtfulness. 

As you can clearly see, we get EXCITED about pesto!  

Bon appetite!

Has a neighbor been kind to you??  Tell me about it!!  I would love to make them a KINDNESS ACTIVIST!  Email me at

Psst, and PLANT A GARDEN if you can!  It is super fun.


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