Monday, November 10, 2008


Each year the kids participate in Operation Christmas Child. OCC is organized by Samaritan's Purse. Essentially, kids fill shoeboxes with goodies, and Samaritan's Purse delivers them to children who live in desperate situations all over the world. It's an awesome cause and probably one of the easiest global outreach activities you can get kids involved with.

Samaritan's Purse has an incredible website, loaded with tons of information, pictures, and stories from people all over the world. Beware of the video section, there are some real tear jerkers in there, I personally cry whenever I see the video of the donkey carrying shoeboxes on his back, I don't know why, something about that scene just gets me. Samaritan's Purse gets in there and delivers them far and wide.

This year, the kids and I thought we'd expand our efforts and try to send 30 boxes, instead of our normal 3.

The first thing I did was round up some of the kids' Halloween candy. I'm always looking for options for Halloween candy. In the past I've recycled it to stuff Maya's birthday pinata with, but then the kids just bat it around, poke a hole in it, pick it up off the floor, and it ends up right back in my kitchen again. It's a vicious cycle. The only way to truly rid yourself of Halloween candy is to pack it up in shoeboxes, fly it overseas, get it on the back of a donkey and have it delivered to a remote, destitute child.
The only problem is that you must first separate and purge. You can't send chocolate, we all know that chocolate doesn't travel well. But then there are some other considerations you must take into account, like how a remote child might feel about receiving gummy body parts, eyeball candy, and atomic fireballs.
I know, atomic fireballs are fun, don't get me wrong; but can you imagine a kid who lives primarily on rice, popping one of those things into his mouth and then screaming in agony? I wouldn't want them to think that Americans are sinister. We are a kind and loving people, which is why I only included a few atomic fireballs...

and a ton of bubble gum and other assorted non-body-part-related sweets.

But you can't just send sweets without sending toothbrushes and toothpaste. I don't want to be responsible for a world dental crisis.

Then there were the toys. This year I was impressed that none of my kids said it was "no fair" that "those kids" get to have all these toys and they get nothing. They've come such a long way, I'm so proud. The kids actually had a great time organizing what seemed like a bazillion toys.

and it didn't take us long to get stuff in order and ready for the big shoebox party

With the help of 16 kids, 2 babies, 4 moms, and 2 dads (who took it upon themselves to go for a leisurely coffee run), we assembled...

labeled and packed

28 boxes.
I am truly trying to be happy about it, but being a bit goal oriented, I am lamenting over the missing two boxes. I'm quite certain that there will be two additional boxes in the mix by the time these get hauled off to the distribution center this week.
If you're the praying type, please pray for the children who will receive these boxes. We don't know who they are, but God does.


MaineMom said...

You're amazing! Seriously, you are already WW (don't say you are not, you, you humble creature you) and yet you find the time to embark on a fun task to help less fortunate children. Such a good dooby you are!

I know the kids had a fun time doing it, and it sets a great example.

MaineMom said...

P.S. I loved the part about the Atomic Hot Balls and candy body parts! Can you imagine?

Lo said...

oh goodness!!! this is so cool!!! wow. can i participate?? i may not be able to do 28 boxes, since it's just lil' ol' me and all (since we all know workaholic husbands don't get their kicks from assembling shoeboxes. although i may ask him if he'll help.), but i would love to at least try to make 5. bc even if i only did ONE, that's still ONE MORE KID out there who feels like they matter. and that's the whole point.

i'm goin' over to s.p.'s and figuring this whole deal out :)

The Gawel's said...

WOW! The kids and I would fill boxes when I attended MOPS.

You are great at getting 30 done. Do you get the items throughout the year or did you just do one big shopping trip? You inspire me, when I am done with nursing school I am definetly going to start back up. I still save my big shoe boxes just in case.

T5M said...

Hey Nicky!
Here's an easy one to host:

Throw a party to raise funds for Soles4Souls. Have guests bring a pair of (gently used) shoes as entry to your party. The kids can all show up barefoot to raise awareness about what it would be like not to have shoes! :-)

I didn't plan this at all, I should actually blog about my experiences with that. This whole thing came together in 6 days.

K-Sea said...

It was a great event. I am proud of you sis.

Grandma said...

You are very special. That is in a great sort of way! You are not only a great mother to your kids but a great mother to this Universe!

Dionne said...

oh, man, you are MY hero!

~Seth and Nancy~ said...

that's awesome! i was wondering about the body part candy...glad you decided not to send those along!