Saturday, November 21, 2009

Operation Christmas Child--Pack Your Shoe Boxes!!

The deadline for dropping off boxes for Samaritan's Purse Operation Christmas Child is this Monday, November 23, 2009. Are your boxes ready?

Having spent all of last week out of town with my hospitalized grandmother, I put off getting ours turned in until the last minute. We packed, labeled, and dropped off our boxes at our local Christian book store yesterday. Thankfully, we had already done all the shopping weeks ago!

You can find a drop-off location near you here:

The kids had a lot of fun packing their boxes!

This activity did not cost us much money, and it was a great way for us to teach our children about giving to others who are not blessed with the abundance that we have become used to.

Start with a standard sized shoe box.

Since I buy shoes to last a long time, I almost never have an actual adult-sized shoe box in my house! I decided this year that we would use shoe box sized plastic containers with lids.

This also eliminated the need to wrap the boxes, which I am all in favor of! (Just ask my husband--he is the official gift wrapper in our house!)

For a complete guide to packing your shoe boxes, check out this .pdf document from Samaritan's Purse.

Some gift ideas include:

  • small toys (no war related items or glass, please)
  • school supplies such as paper, pencils, crayons and markers
  • hygiene items such as bar soap, toothbrushes, combs, and washcloths (no liquids)
  • socks, hats, sunglasses, hair clips or barrettes, watches, flashlights (with extra batteries)
  • a photo of your family and a personal note--if you give your address, the child who receives your box my write back!
My children also decided that they wanted to draw pictures to put in the boxes. They love to draw, and giving pictures is one of their favorite ways to show love--just ask their grandparents!

Acacia seems pleased with her masterpiece!

Once your boxes are packed, it is time to make your donation to Samaritan's Purse. You can write a check for $7 per box, made payable to Samaritan's Purse (with "OCC" in the subject line), and put it in the top of one of your boxes.

Better yet! Make your donation online using EZ-Give!

This is a secure way to pay with your credit or debit card, and it allows you to track your boxes online! You and your children can find out what country your boxes went to, and learn about the ministry of Samaritan's Purse in that part of the world!

Once you've made your online donation, you will receive a receipt and printable box labels. These labels contain the bar code that will be used to track the shoe boxes. Click on "view in .pdf format" for the easiest printing.

Print enough labels for the number of boxes you have packed. Choose whether each box is for a boy or a girl, and be sure to check the "age range" box in the upper left hand corner: 2-4, 5-9, or 10-14. We like to have our children each pack a box for a child their own age and gender.

Tape the label securely to the top of the box, wrap a rubber-band around the box, and you're done!

All that's left to do is to take your boxes to your nearest drop-off location!

Here's a picture of my kids with their boxes in front of the Operation Christmas Child trailer behind our local Christian book store.

(It was like pulling teeth to get them both to look at the camera and smile at the same time that day.)

The trailer was being loaded while we were there, so the kids had a chance to see and talk to the man who was getting the boxes ready to ship. Asher loves making conversation with new people--especially when it comes to asking grown-ups about their work--so he really got a kick out of this!

Have fun packing your boxes! Remember, the deadline for dropping off your shoe boxes is this Monday.

(If you are participating in Operation Christmas Child, I would love to hear about it, so leave a comment! If you blog about it feel free to post a link.)


Anonymous said...

Our boys LOVED packing their boxes for their "Christmas Friends" here's a public link to photos ofour Operation Christmas Child projects:

Kari said...

We're too late for today (DH is off hunting and has the van).

Am I reading the site correctly that we can drop off until 1pm at the local Christian bookstore?

Kari said...

That's on Monday, I meant.

PolartribeMommy said...

Our church did the collection on the 15th and our boxes are out. My boys loved picking out gifts for the "little boy and girl who don't have Christmas gifts". I told them that our gift would allow them to hear about Jesus. My eldest, Elijah, is all excited about it and keeps asking if the box is on the plane and when our box will get to the little boy and girl. I'm looking forward to explaining where it goes and how we can pray for children in that country.

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I'm a Stay-at-Home, Christian, "crunchy" mama. I have been blessed with the calling to be a godly wife and mother. I am passionate about bringing up my children in the discipline and instruction of the LORD, through home education and discipleship. Helpmeet to my best friend and soulmate, Christopher since 1/29/2000, and mama to four little blessings, including a tiny, precious, newborn baby girl.

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Bible--Child's Story Bible by Catherine Vos, Apologia Biblical World View Book 1, "Who is God and Can I Really Know Him?"
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