It’s Service Thursday! And today, we’re going to be starting one of my FAVORITE challenges over again. It’s time to start thinking about Christmas!

(Um, Kimber? It’s May.)

I know.

But May or not … take a look at this.

Joyful, isn’t it?

And you and I? We’re going to make that happen.

Candy

Operation Christmas Child is one of my favorite programs. I’ve written about it in the past, but if you’re new to Let’s Do Some Good Today (welcome!), here’s a summary. Samaritan’s Purse collects gift-filled shoeboxes in November and ships them all over the world to children in poverty as part of their Christmas ministry. If you’d like to participate, you just need to pack a shoebox with small gifts, label the age group (2-4, 5-9, or 10-14) and the gender that it’s been packed for, and drop it off at a collection center. They ask for a $7 per box donation to cover the cost of shipping. And if you pay that donation online, you can print off a unique barcode. When your shoebox arrives at its destinaton, you’ll get an e-mail telling you where it went. Last year, my boxes ended up in Mexico, Ghana, Indonesia, and the Ukraine. It was SO exciting to get those e-mails!

In case you’re not positive you want to participate …

If you can’t tell, I LOVE PACKING SHOEBOXES. And I’d love to have you join me this year.

Shoebox pile

Of course, you could just wait until November to pack your shoebox. But I’d like you to start collecting items now. This will make it SO much easier – and hopefully cheaper! As you have OCC on your mind through the next six months, you’ll catch little items on sale and pick them up. If you plan it right, you’ll never have to pay full price for anything.

006

As an example, in my closet right now, I have Christmas cups and Pez dispenser that I found on clearance at Winco, toy trains and stuffed animals that I found on clearance at Walgreens, toothpaste that I got for free with coupons at CVS, toothbrushes that were donated to me by the dentist, board books and puzzles I got on clearance at Target, needles and thread that I found on clearance at Walmart … and many, many boxes full of other treasures. I pick up these items at rock-bottom prices, tuck them away in my closet, and then in November, I don’t have to buy very much. I can just get together with my friends and have a packing party!

Candy in the water bottles

So this week, your assignment is simple: get a shoebox. (Or a shoebox-sized plastic bin.) That’s it. Just get your box. And then every few weeks, if you pick up one small item, you’ll have a wonderful shoebox ready to ship in November! If you need some ideas, you can see the original challenge here, or you can check out our Operation Christmas Child category. I’ll also be sharing more tips with you as the time gets closer.

So that’s this week’s service challenge. Are you in?

Please let me know if you have ANY questions! I would truly love to help.

4 Comments on It’s Shoebox Time!

  1. I am so in. I wanted to do this last year but did not have the money(live on a fixed income). This year I am ready. I am sending out 4 boxes this year and already starting to collect things. Great project!!!