Waco DC Assistant Manager Rocks! And Other Associates Reap the Benefits

Waco DC Assistant Manager Yongie Raines and two of her rocks that are among the hundreds she has passed out at the warehouse, sent to Expresses and left throughout the community.

Around the Exchange Waco Distribution Center in Texas and at stops along the truckers’ routes, associates are finding rocks.

But these aren’t just any rocks. They are brightly painted with everything from holiday scenes to cat faces to inspirational sayings like “Spread your wings and fly” and then placed with love by Assistant Distribution Center Manager Yongie Raines.

She is one of millions of Americans getting in on the latest craze of spreading happy thoughts through hand-painted rocks. The idea is simple: Paint something inspiring or cheerful on a rock and leave it for someone else to find.

“I started hiding the rocks as a way to give morale boosters to people who may really need a lift,” Raines said. “Whenever I go on my routine walks around the warehouse, I’ll put rocks on the top of boxes, on shelves, in the backs of our trucks or in boxes of merchandise we’ll deliver to the stores.”

Inspiration from a sister

Raines’ foray into the trend started in July when her twin sister from Virginia inspired her to do something artsy. But Raines couldn’t figure out where to channel her creative talents. She began drawing, which led to painting. She found a YouTube video about painted rocks and stumbled upon the Rockin’ with Kindness channel.

Her inspiration for rock painting took off.

“Who would have thought that a simple rock would make that much of a difference?”

-Alana Nance, Waco Distribution Center

Raines began painting and passing out rocks in September after joining the Facebook groups, Rockin’ with Kindness and Waco Rocks. Since then, she’s placed more than 100 rocks in rather easy-to-find spots in the warehouse and “several hundred” rocks in the community at stores, in restaurants or along walking paths.

Some rocks take only a few minutes to design, while others with more intricate designs could take more than an hour, Raines said.

But the pleasure she derives more than offsets the work.

“There are just too many emotions to choose from when I see people finding my rocks and seeing their reactions—happiness, being thrilled, excited, thankful,” Raines said. “If the kind gesture of leaving a painted rock for someone to find with just a picture on it or with an inspirational quote and it makes their day, then my rock served its purpose.”

Rocks from Kansas to Mississippi

A Yongie Raines' rock found at Keesler AFB, Miss., and posted on the Waco Texas Rocks Facebook site.

Associates from Keesler AFB, Miss., to Fort Riley and McConnell AFB in Kansas—all three nearly 600 miles away from the Waco DC—are finding Raines’ rocks. Keesler AFB Stocker Linda Hull found a rock inside a clothing distribution box.

“I can tell you it was something of an excitement to see,” said Mary Seal, visual merchandiser at Keesler AFB.  “Just something that small from someone we didn't know sending out some Christmas spirit at that time of year was indeed appreciated.”

At McConnell AFB, the gloomy weather outside the Exchange had made the associates gloomy on the particular Wednesday as an truck from the Waco DC rolled up to the loading dock.

"As we were unloading, I happened to glance at a shiny object on top of a box," said Christine Schilling, an inventory control associate. "It was a rock! We were so excited to find this. We were pumped and somehow, we felt our spirits lifted. I could not believe how a little rock can have a positive impact. It brightened our gloomy day! Thank you Yongie Raines!

Hot dogs, snacks . . . and rocks

Figueroa, who manages the Waco DC’s Express, discovered one of Raines’ rocks near the hot-dog grill and another on the snack aisle.

“The rocks are very festive and exciting to find in hidden places,” Figueroa said. “I appreciate that she takes the time to brighten our day. Yongie has created excitement when she comes to the store because we’re on the lookout for the next rock. She makes us feel special with her awesome rocks.”

Waco DC forklift driver Alana Nance has discovered nearly a dozen of Raines’ rocks around the warehouse. She and her co-workers look forward to getting the rocks, which she said boosts morale.

“People walk around the warehouse with smiles on their faces and talk about the rocks,” Nance said. “When you do your job on a day to day basis, finding one of Yongie’s rocks really makes a difference.”

One of the rocks Nance found bore an inspirational message that said the person who finds the stone is capable of doing amazing things. The rock immediately added a bright spot to her workday, she added.

“Who would have thought,” Nance said, “that a simple rock would make that much of a difference?”

 

A Gallery of Yongie Raines' Rocks

 

 

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18 Comments

  1. Elisabeth Flecker on January 15, 2019 at 5:49 pm

    What a great Idea to make Peoples day a little bit brighter. Its always nice to find a surprise and lift peoples spirits.

    • Steve Smith on January 15, 2019 at 5:56 pm

      Elisabeth:

      Thank you for writing to your Exchange Post!

      Does anybody else want to comment? Type your comments in the box. We want to read them!

      Steve Smith
      Editor, The Exchange Post

  2. Alex Dewberry on January 15, 2019 at 6:23 pm

    Oh wow!!! What an inspiring story. So happy to see that people still see that it really only takes ” the little things” to make somebody’s day. All rocks are very nice!!!…Keep up the good work!

    • Steve Smith on January 15, 2019 at 6:32 pm

      Alex:

      Thank you for writing to your Exchange Post!

      Anybody else out there want to comment? We want to read them. Write your thoughts in the comment box.

      Steve Smith
      Editor, The Exchange Post

  3. V. Garner on January 15, 2019 at 8:46 pm

    This is a beautiful story… We need some Rocky Rocks here at Buckley… Is really nice when we have a hard bad day and this rocks can bring some smile to any associate. Do not stop… Nice pictures.

    • Steve Smith on January 15, 2019 at 8:48 pm

      Thank you so much for writing to your Exchange Post!

      Anybody else want to comment about Yongie’s rocks? We want to hear! Type your comments in the box for all to see!

      Steve Smith
      Editor, The Exchange Post

  4. Mayra on January 16, 2019 at 2:57 pm

    Hi! I am apart of the Waco, Tx rocks and I love it!
    I’m hoping my rocks will make it out of Waco someday!

    • Steve Smith on January 16, 2019 at 3:02 pm

      Hi Mayra:

      Thank you for writing to your Exchange Post!

      Anybody else out there want to comment on Yongie’s article? We want to read them! Type your thoughts in the comment box for all to see!

      Steve Smith
      Editor, The Exchange Post

  5. Pamela A Brown on January 16, 2019 at 5:19 pm

    I’ve never met Yongie in person, but we had many conversation via email and phone. She is one of a kind and takes terrific care of us in the field. When I was the BMT Troop Store manager at Lackland AFB, TX and needed an emergency order for Command and the BMT Trainees she was there. She even took time out of her schedule and called sometimes to ask if we needed anything, because she knew the challenges we had servicing approximately 700-900 Trainees weekly. Several times I needs additional items, she and her team made sure it was loaded and delivered. She is an inspiration to us. Glad she is on our team. She truly cares about the customers and the entire team whether working directly or indirectly. Yongie, you rock!

    • Steve Smith on January 16, 2019 at 6:44 pm

      Ms. Brown:

      Thank you very much for writing to your Exchange Post! Great things you said about Yonkie.

      Anybody else out there got something to say about Yonkie and her rocks? We want to read them. Type in the comment box for all to see.

      Steve Smith
      Editor, The Exchange Post

  6. Shery Butler, Foreman DDDC on January 17, 2019 at 1:58 am

    love what you do Yongie, would like to do it too 🙂

    • Steve Smith on January 17, 2019 at 1:46 pm

      Shery:

      Thank you for writing all the way from Dan Daniel to your Exchange Post!

      Anybody else out there want to join the long list of comments about this article and Yongie’s rocks? We want to read them. Type your thoughts in the comment box for all to see!

      Steve Smith
      Editor, The Exchange Post

  7. Kalan Brown on January 17, 2019 at 7:46 pm

    Very creative! Keep doing what you do Yongie!

    • Steve Smith on January 18, 2019 at 4:34 pm

      Kalan:

      Thank you for writing to your Exchange Post! I’ll make sure to pass your comments along to Yongie.

      Steve Smith
      Editor, The Exchange Post

  8. Vi Perez on January 17, 2019 at 10:08 pm

    Vi:
    Great inspirational that this Rocks our Rocking peoples lives in the most unexpected way. Keep spreading your happiness.

    Vi Perez
    Travis Associate

    • Steve Smith on January 18, 2019 at 4:33 pm

      Thank you for writing to your Exchange Post! I’ll make sure to send your comments to Yongie!

      Steve Smith
      Editor, The Exchange Post

  9. TIRTHA R. on January 26, 2019 at 5:06 pm

    Great idea,awesome.I got lovely stone in KUWAIT,BUEHRING,ZONE 4.

    • Steve Smith on January 28, 2019 at 1:53 pm

      Thank you so much for writing to your Exchange Post! I will make sure I pass your comments along to Yongie.

      Anybody else out there in Exchange Post Land want to comment? We want to read them. Type what you think in the comment box and it Send!

      Steve Smith
      Editor, The Exchange Post

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