Mayonnaise Packets

Mayonnaise Packets

Rule #5: The little things are always bigger than they seem.

My Daddy was a thief. Not a big one, just the low-level kinda thief. You see, I loved me a good turkey pita sandwich for lunch. I loved a good turkey pita sandwich exponentially more when it had some mayonnaise on it. You know what doesn’t jive well? A soggy mayonnaise-laced turkey pita sandwich. So, my Daddy decided he’d ‘take a few extra’ mayonnaise packets from the hospital cafeteria every day when he ate lunch at work. That way, I could just squeeze a little fresh mayo onto my pita sammich when I was at the lunch table.

mayonnaise packets

Lemme tell ya. Our condiment drawer was overflowing with mayonnaise packets. And my good turkey pita sandwich was exponentially better because of it.


That’s what we do when we love somebody. We steal ridiculous handfuls of mayonnaise packets. We fold shirts a special way. We buy that certain kind of bread. We secretly buy that pair of earrings for a friend that were sold out months ago. We drop everything and rush to help someone who needs a ride. We make coffee for our spouse every morning just the way she likes it. We answer our phone in the middle of the night even when we’re exhausted. We do all kinds of random, little things for the people we love.

The small things are what make the most impact over the long-run. I love me a good piece of David Yurman, don’t get me wrong. But I have to say that the things I treasure most are the little things like the mayonnaise packets. The impact of that memory is a very powerful one that I’ve tried to shift into how I parent and live my everyday life. It showed me that my Daddy was thinking about me in the middle of his crazy day which made me feel so very loved. He knew I hated soggy pita sandwiches. He knew he could make my day a little better with a minor theft.


This brings me to this absolutely gut-wrenching memoir left by Holly Butcher. {Please, please, please read it. But grab a fistful of tissues.} All of her words resonated with me down to my very pineapple core. Lately I’ve been focusing so much energy on comparisons between myself and everyone and everything else around me. You’d think by now, after all of my “life lessons”, that I’d get the clue. But I have to tell you that I lost focus for a while. Holly’s words were a proverbial leather-glove-slap-in-the-face. “How dare you, Lilly!” Her letter couldn’t have been published at a better time of the year. It’s a time to start fresh. A time to refocus our energy. It’s a time to focus on what matters: the little things.

corey douglas

My encouragement to you and to myself is that we all focus on the little things. The mayonnaise packets, the kiss goodbye, the simple, “I love you,” can all make the biggest difference. I can almost guarantee that by relishing in the little things, we will gain better focus of the big ones.

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1 thought on “Mayonnaise Packets”

  1. Beautifully written. Your Daddy loved you and as I remember you waited for him to come home from work everyday and ran into his arms yelling Daddy. Sweet memories that I cherish.


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