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Taco Bell worker puts hundreds of notes into orders to brighten customers' days

Within the few minutes it takes to prep an order, this Taco Bell employee takes a moment also to deliver what she hopes is a smile.

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Approaching the counter of Syracuse’s Taco Bell, Kelly Stewart is there radiating positivity, ready to take your order.

Fast food is known for being exactly that -- fast. But within the few minutes of receiving and delivering an order, Kelly takes an extra moment also to deliver what she hopes is a smile.

“It’s so nice to see somebody smile because you never know what’s going on in someone’s life,” Kelly said.

Between inputting the order, helping prepare, and adding utensils, Kelly writes a brief note and slips it into each customer’s bag.

From simple connotations to quotes by Mark Twain, Albert Einstein and Vincent Van Gogh, the 27-year-old has written hundreds of notes with which to surprise her customers.

The idea first came to her when her co-workers, whom she refers to as one big family, were required to add a promotional survey receipt into each order. Kelly noticed there was a small blank spot on the back of the survey, perfect for what she calls an inspirational pick-me-up.

The working mother knows from experience that a gesture as small as a note can make all the difference.

“I’ve grown from experiences and hardships in my life,” Kelly said.

Kelly began working at Taco Bell in October. In the four months of employment, she had handed out hundreds of notes and received wonderful feedback.

One customer told Kelly she touched her heart because the quote Kelly wrote was one her mother used to say to her.

Whether it’s tear-inducing or just a simple smile, Kelly takes pride in bringing others happiness through her job.

“I may just work at a fast food place, but you have to take pride in what you do,” Kelly said. “Especially with how hard today’s times are, it's nice to put a smile on someone’s face.”

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