The Blue Box

My friend Sarah gave me a small wooden box for my birthday. A blue wooden box. A hand-painted simple blue wooden box with a gold latch in front. A blue wooden box that looks like a mini-treasure chest. My blue box is a treasure chest, a very special treasure chest. 

Sarah painted the box deep blue and wrote messages on it in with a shiny, sparkly gold pen. She brought the box to my birthday party and invited friends to sign it, decorating the outside of the box with their signatures. On the inside, there were more treasures to discover. Sarah gave friends small pieces of paper on which they could write private messages. She carefully rolled each message into a scroll, held it together with shiny silver tape, and placed it in the box.

Over the course of the evening, party guests stopped by Sarah’s table to write messages. Slowly, the box was filled with words of encouragement, wisdom, and love.  On the top of the box Sarah wrote, “For Roberta, Remember the amazing women who celebrate your birth and draw on their strength in the coming year.”

On the front of the box it says, “I love you Mom,” from Claudia.” Next to Claudia is a message from my niece Olivia, “You are an amazing aunt and mommy, love Livy Loo.” Other friends signed their names, Clare, Anne, Stacy, Shelley, Sarah, Millie, Paula, Dana, Rhona, Laura, Bethany, Joni, Kelley, Erin, Lizzie, Kellie, Julie, Susan G., Helen, and Dawn.

The blue box now sits on my desk and each day I open it, like a secret treasure chest, and unravel a new scroll. I find words, messages, ideas, jokes, and love. And then, I am transported back to that evening, to the magical party with my treasured women friends, to the dancing, the celebration, and the love.

In its simplicity, this box is the greatest gift I have ever received. This was the message I unraveled this morning “Keep your spirit, keep your enthusiasm. Keep your generosity. You are so special! We love you!”

The Blue Box is a simple idea. Find a plain wooden box. Paint it and decorate it and invite people to fill it with their own private messages. Give it to someone who needs a little support and love. One gift becomes 40 gifts, one message becomes 100 messages, and one simple blue box holds 1000 smiles.