It's that time of year again. If you are looking for a fun hands-on charity for your little ones to get into, I highly recommend this one. My kids have enjoyed making shoeboxes for Operation Christmas Child for several years now. They each decorate a shoebox with wrapping paper (with help from Mom), pick an age/boy/girl and then we go shopping for lots of fun goodies for their "child". I try really hard to think about what it is like to live in an impoverished Third World country and avoid anything that needs batteries or is trendy. We try to stick to the fun basics, such as art supplies, balls, dolls, stickers, puzzles, as well as soap and toothpaste. It's been a great experience for my kids for several reasons. I take this opportunity to talk with them about how many, many children live without the basics and how we as Americans (generally speaking) are way too wrapped up in our stuff. We have the Material World book and go through it and look at the poorer countries. We don't do Santa Claus and we discuss again that he is not a real person, but he symbolizes doing good to others. Then my kids get to "play" Santa Claus and give these shoeboxes to a child in need. This year went peacefully, but in years past it has been hard for my little ones to part with the treasure boxes. They had to dig down into themselves and show a little sacrifice. Anyway, if you are interested in knowing more, Operation Christmas Child is the week of November 12 this year and you can find out more HERE.
writing their letters to their "child"
Choosing for their "child" from the loot
Finishing up their boxes
Little Red Ridinghood wanted to do a baby girl so we made her box for a 2-4 year old. The doll took up a lot of space in the box, but it will probably be well loved. I was pleased that Little Red Ridinghood gave up the pretty new doll without trying to claim it for her own.
Goldilocks squeezed everything in for her 5 to 8 year old girl. (The camera is a toy not real, as the child would have no way to get film or processing.) I had to laugh because she liked how the box came out so much that she said, "I wish I had nothing so someone would give me a shoebox like this." LOL!