My family started the “Kindness Rocks!” project in April. My Mom had us color some rocks and then she advertised on NextDoor. So many people wanted our rocks! And now my Mom, sister Shayna (9) and brother Judah (5) and I have made and delivered over 200 kindness rocks! We have started making rocks with Japanese, Hebrew and Spanish words on them too because my sister and I are enrolled in the Spanish dual immersion program at Bancroft Elementary and all 3 of us attend Japanese and Hebrew schools. Recently we have been making graduation rocks for all the 2020 graduates around the neighborhood. We take extra graduation rocks on our deliveries and leave them whenever we see a graduate lawn sign. We also have taken a liking to putting rocks on people’s doorstep that have kid’s art because we want to add to the fabulous art that is already there. Having to stay at home has been hard, but doing this project with my family makes it fun. Lately we have been sending rocks to our family that we haven’t been able to see like grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins and friends who don’t live near us. We put hero rocks at the local fire stations too and have delivered some to our teachers, doctors, daycare and police officers that we know. Our favorite is when we do a rock exchange and get to trade for rocks that other kids have decorated. One family was inspired by our rocks and decorated their entire garage door with a “Kindness Rocks” painting featuring drawings of our rocks! It was awesome! My Mom always tells us that kindness is the most important thing, so this is our way of spreading kindness and joy when everything is so scary. If anyone wants a rock make sure to look for us on NextDoor!
A Note from Jack’s mom: My name is Suzanne Yahiro Leibowitz, and I am currently on leave (due to COVID) from my job as a Physician Assistant so I can be at home with my kids. I‘ve worked at a busy fertility clinic for the past 10 years helping to create families. In July I will also be working for a local OB/GYN. As a full time working Mom, with a full time working husband, we find that we do most things “ for” our kids and not necessarily “with” our kids. For example, I have been the lead for the Bancroft school auction for the past few years and the lead for the Scottsdale Swim Club auction for two years While I am very proud of the record breaking income that my auction teams have been able to contribute indirectly to my children, I don’t do a lot “with” my kids. So this rock project has been a way to keep them off screen time while spending time together. We sit outside, get rocks from our yard, and start painting. We get inspiration from rocks we find online. Although I am NOT AT ALL artistic, I have found this project to be so relaxing and cathartic. Sometimes I am outside alone doing it, just to get a few minutes to sit quietly. Normally we are always running around to and from work, daycare, gymnastics class, baseball practices, swim team practice, Japanese and Hebrew schools, with a busy social schedule. While the shelter in place and cancellation of school has been tough, it has also provided us an opportunity to spend uninterrupted time with our kids. Normally packed schedules have been cleared and we can have so much family time for movie nights, to organize, start our garden, do yard work and play outside. I will cherish this time while it lasts. We are healthy and together and that is what matters the most! So as far as pandemics go, this one hasn’t been too bad for us. My hubby works for a general contractor in SF and has been working from home. Our two oldest are at Bancroft in the Dual Immersion Spanish Program, and our little guy just finished TK at Walnut Acres. We love being a part of this community where we have lived for the past 10 years. (But I do miss my So Cal family and friends).
By Jack Leibowitz (10-year-old Bancroft Elementary student), Resident since 2010