via Rockstar Pizza / Facebook

Rockstar Pizza in Brownsburg, Indiana has a beautiful holiday tradition. For the past five years, on Christmas Day, its owners, Colby and Ron Mathews give all the day's profits to its staff.

This year, the seven employees who volunteered to work on Christmas all received over $700 for working a short shift. But during that time they worked really, really hard.

The staff had planned on working the dinner shift from 4 pm to 9 pm, but the phone started blowing up early.

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When Grace Kim was suicidal, she was faced with a choice: She could end her life, or she could give herself one more chance to truly live.

It was by no means an easy decision to make. Grace had struggled with her sexual identity since the age of 4, and after years of being told that being gay was a sin, it began to take its toll — even leading her to abuse substances just to cope.

At the end of her rope, Grace tried to think of something to hold onto. Trying to recall the best day of her life, she realized she didn't have one. That's when she had a simple but profound idea — that day could be today.

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When Maureen and Jim Nelis got married in January 2018, they had to decide what they'd do for a honeymoon.

For the couple from Derry, Ireland, the choice was a little different than for most. Both of them had been married and widowed, so they decided to forego a honeymoon completely and bring the party somewhere closer to home, where it would have a lasting impact.

Maureen and Jim Nelis in front of their flowers. All photos courtesy of Anne McGrotty.

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Welcome to Day 9 of Upworthy's 31 Days of Happiness Countdown! If this is your first visit, here's the gist: Each day between Dec. 1 and Dec. 31, we're sharing stories specifically designed to bring joy, smiles, and laughter into our lives and yours. It's been a challenging year, so why not end it on a high note with a bit of laughter? Check back tomorrow (or click the links at the bottom) for another installment!

We're about a third of the way through the 31 Days of Happiness Countdown, and I honestly can't believe we've only featured one "paying it forward" story. Here's another — this time with a twist at the end sure to bring a smile to your face.

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