Sunday, November 4, 2012

~ I've Begun ~

I confess, I am one of those people that begin the Christmas season on November 1.  I don't have my trees up or anything, but we have been known to eat our turkey dinner by the light of the Christmas tree:-)

This year Thanksgiving is so early that I will probably wait to put up the trees, but there will be signs of the season at my house pretty soon.

One of the traditions I look forward to is filling 2 shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child.
This is an outreach program from Samaritan's Purse, and organization run by Billy Graham's son, Franklin.

My church participates every year and I pick up the shoeboxes at church.  This is the first year I've had this kind of box, usually our Sunday school classes wrap regular shoe boxes and we fill those.
You can certainly use a regular shoe box.

You can fill a box for a boy or a girl, and there are 3 age groups.  I think it's 2-4, 5-9, and 10-12 or maybe 14.  I have always filled the littlest ages as I have had young grandchildren.  It's easy at that age, lots of fun little things to include.

This year I picked the middle age group, 5 to 9.  I thought I would show what I used to fill the boxes, for my memory and for ideas for anyone that might like to participate in this Christian outreach.
The boxes are collected and sent overseas and have the gospel message in that country's language placed in the boxes.

This is the boy's box.
It contains:
Uno card game
table tennis game
paddle ball
spiral tablet 
2 mechanical pencils
red polo shirt size M 8/10
spiderman baseball cap
a ball that is a globe {World Market}
mini Christmas activity book
3 tubes of chap stick
mini slinky
soap and bandaids
pack of gum

See ~ it all fits.  I remove all the packing materials, that helps!

The girl's box contains:
Uno card game
Paddle ball
fabric journal
2 mechanical pencils
black leggings M 7/8
shirt M 7/8
3 lip gloss
globe ball
hairbrush and hair bands
3 head bands
Lala loopsy doll
mini Christmas activity book
mini slinky
soap and bandaids

That's it ~ so easy and such a wonderful way to bless a child.

As a final touch on top, I include a picture card of our family from last year and write a brief message.  

There are so many ways to share the blessings that we have been given.  This is one that is near and dear to my heart and I love that it happens first in the season, it helps to remind ME of the things that really matter.

Have a blessed Thanksgiving!

Joining Richella for her Grace at Home Party.


Love Being A Nonny said...

We do these boxes every year too. Amazing what joy it brings ME to send them off. It also reminds me how blessed we all are here in the USA!

Debbie said...

I love the idea of the family Christmas card going with the shoe box. I would never have thought of that. We do it through the church every year too.

WendyBee said...

I sent a few one year, but haven't since. You have inspired me. I think I will do it again this year. It is sooo joyous to put these together. Thanks for the reminder.
oh, and I'll forgive you for being one of those people. But I won't begin 'til after Thanksgiving. Then I'll join in the festivities.

Mimi said...

I have my boxes, too, and have planned tomorrow as the "packing" day since I have finally "lit" at home for a few days. Thanks for the idea of putting in a family picture. Like WendyBee, I'll forgive you for being 'one of those' people but also won't begin until after Thanksgiving; although, I am considering putting up the basement tree so the littles can help decorate while they're here for Thanksgiving.

Richella Parham said...

You did a great job filling these boxes! Thank you for the timely reminder--I need to finish ours so I can turn it in on Sunday. :)