I can imagine the scene all too well: a single mom and her two kids are at Pizza Hut after a long day and an even longer week of school, work, day care and life. The kids are misbehaving and the mom is doing her best to calm them down while apologizing to the only other restaurant patron — a young man on his own — for her kids' behavior.

I've been on both sides of that table before, and I know that it could have been stressful for everyone involved. But instead, a stranger's random act of kindness turned it into a joyful scene that left both the mom — and the restaurant staff — in tears.

According to a report from ABC11, the local news station in North Carolina where this all occurred, as soon as the man left the restaurant, the waitress and her manager approached the table where the mom and her family were eating. They informed her that the man had paid the family's dinner bill and left them with a Pizza Hut gift card — and a three-page note.  

With tears in their eyes, the three read the note together:

"I do not know your back story, but I have had the privilege of watching you parent your children for the past 30 minutes. I have to say thank you for parenting your children in such a loving manner.

I have watched you teach your children about the importance of respect, education, proper manners, communication, self control, and kindness all while being very patient. I will never cross your path again but am positive that you and your children have amazing futures.

Keep up the good work, and when it starts to get tough do not forget that others may be watching and will need the encouragement of seeing a good family being raised. God bless! -Jake"

Here's a video about the story:

Related smile-worthy files on MNN:

Stranger's random act of kindness stuns single mom at Pizza Hut
A thoughtful man's 3-page note leaves the mom and the restaurant staff in tears.