Friday, August 31, 2012

Please Pray ~ Earthquake off coast of Philippines...

As my local friends know, so many of our shoeboxes go to the Philippines and so our area has committed to pray for the people of the Philippines. Other boxes from our area go to other nations in the Pacific, including Indonesia. This earthquake has also caused a risk for tsunami for all these areas. Join in prayer, that the people would be spared, that Gods comfort would pour out, and His Hand of protection would be on these people.

From CNN:
(CNN) -- An earthquake with a magnitude of 7.9 has struck off the coast of the Philippines, the U.S. Geological Survey said Friday.
The quake prompted a tsunami warning for parts of Indonesia, the Philippines, Taiwan, Japan, Guam and other areas, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said.
"An earthquake of this size has the potential to generate a destructive tsunami that can strike coastlines near the epicenter within minutes and more distant coastlines within hours," the tsunami warning center said.
The quake, which was about 20 miles deep, struck just before 8:50 p.m., the agency said. Its center was about 65 miles southeast of the town of Guiuan, in the Philippine province of East Samar.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

A Family Transformed

The below story is from Operation Christmas Child UK and is yet another example of how God is working through these simple shoeboxes. Do not be discouraged!! Your small gift packed with love and prayer can change lives. Praise be to God!!

A Family Transformed


A seventeen year old boy living in a small village in Romania heard that there was going to be a Christmas gift distribution, so he went and received a gift filled box from Operation Christmas Child, along with the booklet explaining the birth of Christ. The story intrigued him and he would go to church where the gifts were given as often as he could and even attended summer camp put on by the church. 

On the way to camp the Pastor asked the boy about his life at home. The boy shared with his new friend about his desperate home situation – that his mum was a prostitute and that his father found clients for her. He was ashamed of his family and knew their lifestyle was wrong.

Upon returning to his village from the summer camp, the young man boldly told his mother that he could not live as they did anymore. As it turned out, his pastor friend found a place for him to stay at the church. It was not long however before he began to feel burdened for his family and God gave him the strength he needed to go home.

His mum was the next person in his family to accept Christ. Due to the size of the village, it did not take long for everyone to know that the former prostitute was a Christian. The father however was very angry because his wife was not making money for him any more and he would have to find another line of work. He tried many times to kill the mother and son. One day he came home drunk and grabbed the woodchopper, closed the door and gave his wife and son one last minute to make a wish. They began to pray and God protected them that day, for the father simply turned and left.

The church family continued to meet and began to pray for this man. He soon became very ill and had to go to the hospital. The hospital called the family to come and get him as he was going to die very soon. The mother and the son brought the man home and the church began to pray. The prayers were heard and answered. The man stood up from his death bed the next morning –healed and changed! 

A shoebox gift for a boy was the beginning of bringing life into a hopeless situation.

Pinterest and Operation Christmas Child

As many of you know I have a Pinterest Page for OCC and there are SO many others! I keep finding MORE and MORE. I add then as I find them into the sidebar list of links.

Today I found ANOTHER great Pinterest Page so I thought it time to have another post on the topic. Through Pinterest you can find craft ideas for your shoebox for anyone of any skill set. There are many that your children can help with and others that are for those who sew or crochet or knit and every level in between! So don't think you need to be "crafty."

You can place something special in the shoeboxes that you made, generally for very little money, and find something PERFECT for the child you are packing for. So don't wait!

So check out the links.. and enjoy! Be inspired! And have FUN.

Making a Matching Game

Since I just did a post on what to pack in a 2-4 year old box, I thought I would give a how to on one of the ideas I had listed..... A Memory or Matching Game!!

I found a neat tutorial online at

I thought this would be SO nice for a 2-4 year old box... and you could personalize it in so many ways. The author laminated the pieces which is certainly nice but you could just use modge podge and simply glue images to the back of tagboard or cardstock.

And you could make the images anything you liked! You could use images from Bible coloring pages online, or clip art of animals, or any other images you would like in this set. So many cute possibilities. And a simple gift for a young child.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012


I have not checked our local stores to see if the deal is going on but the Catalina offer is nationwide, and not just at Safeway. (Deals can be had at Kmart as well, for instance)

This is from ClipWithPurpose:

Here’s a deal I stumbled across today while shopping at Safeway.  You should be able to snag this deal at all the Safeway family of stores, too (Vons, Dominicks, etc).
Reach Firm Toothbrushes $0.79 when you buy 2
Receive a $2 catalina* when you buy 2 or receive  a $4 catalina* when you buy 4
Final Price: Free plus money maker!
*A catalina is a coupon that prints at the register when for you to use on your next in store purchase
NOTE:  You must buy these in quantities of 2 or 4 (don’t buy 3!) for the deal to work!  If you have any of the $1 off coupons from 7/29 Red Plum, then you’ll have yourself an even better money maker!

And from Krazy Coupon Lady I found THIS link to a Reach coupon.. which was still working when I used it this morning. This makes it a money maker! YAY!

I love CLIP WITH PURPOSE and other sites like KrazyCouponLady that help me find deals for our shoeboxes! Happy shopping!

What to Get Them??? Packing Shoeboxes for 2-4 year olds

People never seem to struggle when packing a box for a 5-9 year old, but both the 10-14 and 2-4 get fewer boxes and one thing I always hear is I don't know what to get them.

I wrote 2 posts earlier about 10-14 year olds at and I also did a post about making kits that is good for the older boxes at

I thought it was time to post for the 2-4 year old darlings!

First, be careful in including things with small parts that pose a choking hazard.

Second, pray! God works miracles all the time through the shoeboxes so pack as you are lead. :)

Now for ideas:

Plush or Doll - this is SO valuable to any age but perhaps most for the little ones. Including a huggable toy can be a tangible way to share love. If you want there are many ideas for lovies you can make right here in our craft section, such as this toddler lovey and or this stegosaurus.

Art Supplies:
-coloring pages are a great option for this age group. A coloring book or printed pages from the many free sites online offer many great options.
-crayons (perhaps consider the chunkier ones)
-safety scissors
-crayon holder

Musical Instruments: maracas, shakers, whistles, kazoos, etc

flip flops, shirts, pillowcase dresses, hats, gloves, socks, etc. If you crochet you have to check out these cute hats too.

Imaginary Play:
puppets, finger puppets, a dress up cape, play crown, are all fun options. Or accessories for a doll? Small animal or people figures. How about toy cars and a car mat? Most of these options can be bought inexpensively or made for even less. (Instructions can be found in our craft area)

Active Play:
Balls of all kinds (including handmade), jumpropes, and a new favorite of mine, ribbon twirlers.

Games and Puzzles: Matching Games, simple puzzles, printable simple mazes, etc make fun extras for your box. 

Practical Items are ALWAYS a must!!!
Don't forget the basics- toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, and washcloth. Maybe a comb or brush.
How about a tote bag for carrying these items in?

We have just scratched the surface on what you can include but I hope I have inspired you to pack a box for a precious little one! Don't forget to send a photo and letter... they are often treasured years after everything has worn out.

Hope Changes Everything

The above picture is from Operation Christmas Child FB page. I have so enjoyed their series of photos recently and so will continue to share some of them with you here on the blog.

This morning this story was also on their feed:

A mother brought her 3-year-old son to an OCC shoe box distribution in Belize. She said that several days before the distribution, he had asked her for some marbles. When he opened his box, there was a bag of marbles in the box! His mother began to cry, and said she felt that God had given her child something he really desired.

Our God.... He answers prayers. He gives true Hope and Joy! And through Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes, we can  share God's love, His hope, and His joy! Remember to pray as you shop and as you pack. The simple dollar store marbles may be an answer to prayer... may be just what a child wants... and be the simple gift that shows that our God cares!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

God is working! Kingdom in the Clouds

Kingdom In The Clouds

Operation Christmas Child makes inroads for the Gospel in communities all over Nepal
Nepal is known for being the home of Mount Everest, the crowning jewel of the Himalayas and the tallest peak on earth, reaching more than five miles into the heavens. Mountaineers from across the globe travel to Nepal to challenge the rugged peaks.

The country also has a unique spiritual heritage that embraces two of the world’s most widely held religions, Hinduism and Buddhism.

Thousands of Buddhists make pilgrimages to Lumbini, Nepal, to visit the birthplace of Siddhartha Gautama, the Buddha. Although Buddhism spread across Asia, it was Hinduism that took root in Nepal. The country was the world’s only Hindu kingdom until it was declared a secular state in 2006. Today more than 80 percent of the nation’s 30 million people worship the gods and goddesses of Hinduism.

Christians have always been a minority in Nepal. In 1980, only a few thousand believers were known to exist. Today, that number tops 700,000 and continues to grow with the help of missionaries and native believers dedicated to spreading the Gospel.

GET INVOLVED: Click here to order materials and begin preparing for National Collection Week, November 12-19, 2012, and learn more Operation Christmas Child.

Samaritan's Purse is helping make a way for the Gospel through gift boxes that are distributed to children through Operation Christmas Child.

Working in partnership with local churches, the Operation Christmas Child National Leadership Team in Nepal is building bridges of trust and making inroads into communities from the slums of Kathmandu and to remote villages, where gift boxes have to be packed in on foot over rugged mountain trails.

“Operation Christmas Child is a wonderful outreach to the community,” said Dhan Raj Ghimire, the National Leadership Team coordinator in Nepal. “Jesus Christ loved children very much. When we share His love with the children, parents see it, they learn to trust us, and they allow their children to come to church and participate in other Samaritan’s Purse programs. It’s all about Jesus Christ.”

When Pastor Arzun Ramtel moved to the village of Khadgabhanzyang to plant a church, there were only a handful of believers, and he found it difficult to make headway into the community. Operation Christmas Child changed everything.

“Operation Christmas Child became a way to show love to the community,” he said. “The gifts are given to the children, but they become a way to reach the family.”

A blind man named Rasham first heard the Gospel when his 10-year-old daughter, Mina, brought a gift box home. She handed her father each gift and described it to him in detail. There was a pair of gloves, a coloring book, pencils, a ball and her favorite gift, a stuffed animal dog.

Mina began to attend the Bethel Assemblies of God Church, where she learned more about Christ and studied the Bible. “I accepted Jesus at my Sunday school,” Mina said.

Pastor Ramtel visited Mina’s family and discovered that Resham was having fainting spells and had been unable to work. Although Rasham is blind, he is a talented musician who plays a sanai, a unique Nepali instrument that looks somewhat like a clarinet that is played at weddings and special events.

Ramtel prayed for Resham and shared the Gospel with him and his wife, Batti.

“The pastor became like a father to me,” Rasham said. “He comes to help me during times of hardship. I have accepted Jesus. I have committed my life to Christ.”

Rasham is one of many new believers who heard about God’s gift of salvation because of the project.

“Operation Christmas Child is a milestone for the church in this community,” Ramtel said. “Through this ministry, many unreached people have had a chance to hear the Gospel, and many have received Jesus Christ.”

Alongside each gift box, children receive a colorful booklet called “The Greatest Gift of All.” When the children go home, the booklet often becomes the first contact that families have ever had with the Gospel.

In the village of Shikharbshi, Shanti Tamang opened a gift box and caught her breath when she found a “Cutie” doll with bright orange hair resting on top of the gifts.

“I never had a doll before” the 12-year-old said as she gave the doll a hug. “And the notebooks and the pens and—oh, I am so happy!”

Shanti heard a Gospel message before she received her gift box and was intrigued by the colorfully illustrated booklet she received.

“I like the pictures,” she said, thumbing through the pages. “When I get home, I will read it to my brother and sisters. I will also read it to my parents, because they can’t read.”

Recent Operation Christmas Child distributions have taken gift boxes to remote villages in the Nuwakot region, where the Gospel has rarely been heard and where there are no churches. Tragically, the area is also the center for human trafficking.

Lured by promises of good jobs and even marriage, young girls are whisked away from their mountain villages and forced to work in brothels in Kathmandu and neighboring India. Young men are also taken and put to work on construction crews or in factories. Most of the children are never heard from again.

Pastor Lok Bahadur is coordinating distributions in the Nuwakot region. He said that human trafficking is a source of shame for the people in the villages, but the Gospel provides hope and truth that can help conquer the darkness.

“I have been praying for these villages for years,” he said. “I will visit the villages myself to do fellowship and follow-up ministry with the children and the community.”

Shoe box distributions were recently done at local schools in the Nuwakot region, and school administrators were thrilled. Many children drop out or rarely come. But when word went out that the gift boxes were coming, classrooms were overflowing.

“I think the teachers were happier than the children,” Pastor Bahadur said. “The gift boxes encouraged children to come to school and get involved again.”

Bahadur was also encouraged knowing that the excitement of the children and the Gospel booklets they received would touch hundreds of families.

“My job is to spread the Gospel and replace darkness with the love of God,” Bahadur said. “These shoe boxes that came all the way from America are symbols of God’s love.”

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Tubular Bracelets

I found this cute bracelet idea online at craftykids101 and thought how EASY and FUN! This is a simple craft idea... no sewing, no crochet. YAY!

For full instructions go to

Friday, August 24, 2012

Another Twin Miracle

The below post is from the official Operation Christmas Child facebook page (from the US) at

Twin girls arrived a shoe box gift distribution in the Philippines. They stood in line to receive their gifts, which were being distributed according to age and gender but had not been opened since being shipped from the United States. When the girls opened their boxes, the items in them were identical and letters inside the two boxes explained that they had been packed by twin girls in the U.S.!

Our boxes often go to the Philippines! What a wonderful affirmation that God IS working and He is working THROUGH Operation Christmas Child!!! Please remember to pray as you pack your boxes! We are doing this in service of an AWESOME GOD!

Note: at each distribution the boxes remain taped shut until after prayer time over the boxes, and are only opened BY the children after a countdown... so this was NOT orchestrated by man... but by GOD!

Staples Deals!! There are some great ones this week!

STAPLES SALES AD for 8/26 - 9/1

Free After Easy Rebate  (To get an easy rebate you must have the free Staples Reward Card)
Sharpie Accent Tank Highlighters, yellow or assorted.
$4-$4 ER = FREE
Limit 1 rebate
HP Everyday Photo Paper 8.5" x 11"
$9.99 - $1 Instant Savings - $8.99 Easy Rebate = FREE
Limit 2
Avery NoteTabs, assorted colors and sizes
$3.99 - $3.99 Easy Rebate = FREE
Limit 1
Excludes Martha Stewart and Clearance
BIC Round Stick Grip Ball point pens, Medium, black, 12/pack
$2.49 - $2.49 Easy Rebate = FREE
Limit 1
Extreme Deals - These are GREAT for the Shoeboxes!
$0.01/ea with $5 Minimum Purchase, limit 4
..#2 Yellow Pencils 8/pack
..Pink Cap Erasers, 12/pack
..Slider Pencil Box

$0.50, Limit 2 unless noted
..BIC Mechanical Pencils, 5/pack
..Staple's 12" See thru Ruler
..Staple's 8.5" x 11" Writing Pad, (no limit)
Staple's Stickies 1/2" page flags: $1
Hammermill Copy Paper Ream: $6.99 - $4.99 ER = $2
Triple Recycling
Get $6 back in staple's rewards per cartridge when you spend $50 on HP Ink.
Limit 5 recycled cartridges per customer

If you buy items from the first list, totaling $5 you qualify for the Extreme Deals. And ALL the penny deals look great for the shoeboxes this week! You can then get an Easy Rebate online for the purchase price, making your shopping total sooooooo low.

My plan is to buy the pack of photo paper, to use for my family and to send a photo in each shoebox, and the pack of pens, and get the easy rebates for those, and then buy the penny deals, and perhaps some rulers. :) 

Coupons at Dollar Tree!!

Starting August 26, Dollar Tree will be accepting coupons!! There are many possibilities here for even BETTER deals!

I love Dollar Tree already for shopping for the shoeboxes! There are many options there that are great for the shoeboxes.... but with the possibility of even MORE savings makes the store even MORE exciting!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Wide Selection of Free Printable Paper Dolls

This site offers many fun paper doll printables for free.

The below links have a variety of paper doll printables. I am not familiar enough with copyright laws to know for sure the legality of them... but all are out of print and one of them has the artists permission for personal use. 

These can be printed on cardstock and sent as is or laminate the main doll and send them cut out for easier fit in the shoeboxes and so that the children more easily understand them.

If you do a google search of free printable paper dolls you will find a TON more.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Let the children come

Matthew 19

The Little Children and Jesus

13 Then people brought little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them and pray for them. But the disciples rebuked them.
14 Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” 15 When he had placed his hands on them, he went on from there.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

2 Crochet patterns for hats that are TOO cute for words

As I have said before, I do not crochet, but these patterns are too adorable to pass up.

If YOU crochet, I can't imagine a cuter thing to put in the boxes, especially for the little ones.

The pattern for this is available free from ravelry! The designer, Elizabeth Trantham, outdid herself with this one. Now what little girl wouldn't adore this??? Find the pattern at

When I first saw this one, I immediately thought of the adorable theme boxes of Hello Kitty by Project 414... such as this one at  If you took the time to make this precious hat, it would be a fabulous centerpiece for a hello kitty theme box!

And then, this one!!! Oh my goodness! So cute for either a boy or girl! This fuzzy polar bear hat pattern is also available for free from ravelry at The designer Ashley Phelps is brilliant!

If you crochet, I think these would be so special to include in the box. Made with love and prayers and sure to be treasured by the receiving child.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Treasured Gifts

I read this story of Khin Khin from Operation Christmas Child in Canada and just teared up massively. The gifts we send, they are so valued... treasured!

Please take the time to read the story and then, when you send your gift, remember to put in a letter and photo. And pray for the child receiving the gift. What a BLESSING to show God's love in such a simple way.
Khin Khin received an Operation Christmas Child shoe box at a New Delhi refugee camp, and now packs shoe boxes with her church in Winnipeg.

"Everybody thought receiving the shoe box was the best thing that ever happened in our life."

That's a memory 18 year-old Khin Khin has of her time living in India as a refugee from Burma, waiting to be transferred to a new country. "Not only receiving gifts from someone we had never seen, but reading the letter of encouragement. It was amazing and unforgettable."

Khin Khin was eleven when a church near her temporary home in a New Delhi refugee camp distributed Operation Christmas Child shoe boxes to the children there.

"I received some coloring books, pencils, crayons, a notebook, a letter, and a photo of the girl who sent the shoe box," she says. Khin Khin carried that photo with her when her family was chosen to resettle in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

This autumn, she and others at her church in downtown Winnipeg are preparing to send gift-filled Operation Christmas Child shoe boxes to children around the world living in situations of war, poverty, disease, and natural disaster.

"Receiving the shoe box made me realize how a Christian should give for others," she says. "Some children might not have people who care for them, so for them, it's encouragement to know they still have other people who care for them and that God is always there for them when they don't have anybody else.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

A simple thing ~ Toothbrush and Toothpaste

One thing I include in EVERY shoebox is a toothbrush and toothpaste. Many of the children receiving the boxes will never see a dentist. Many do not have or have to share their toothbrush. It is a simple thing we take for granted here but is of such value around the world.

Here is a Cup of Joy video of a girl receiving hers.

And remember to watch here or at clipwithpurpose, as whenever we find deals for FREE or very inexpensive toothbrushes or toothpaste it will be on the site. There is a deal RIGHT now, scroll down one post, for FREE toothbrushes

And, when you go to your dentist, maybe ask? Many dentists will gladly give for this charity!! If they give extra, that you don't need for YOUR box(es) bring it to the drop of location.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Free Toothbrushes at Safeway!!

Hi all! I just spotted a great deal at (which if you do not follow yet, you should!!) for FREE toothbrushes for our shoeboxes. YAY Find the full details at

New Shoes for the School year... then you have a SHOEBOX SEED

This is fun video... reminding us to SAVE our empty shoeboxes and REUSE them to bless a child.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Monday, August 13, 2012

3 Months and counting! Plus JOY OF MUSIC!

Yesterday marked the 3 month mark before Collection Week!! YAY!!!

If you haven't started now is a GREAT time to begin buying for the shoeboxes! School supplies are at a low low low price, summer clothes and toys are on clearance, and ziploc bags and socks and underwear are on sale as well!

Wanna remember why we do this???? Take a moment to enjoy this Cup of Joy video about a boy experiencing SUCH JOY from the simple gift of a toy harmonica in his box.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Back to school sales help pack more boxes!

U.S. Families Do Their Part to Reach Global Goal of Helping 9 Million Children in 2012 and More than 100 Million Since 1993

BOONE, N.C. , Aug. 6, 2012—There are tens of millions of children in developing countries who have never attended school. (Source: UNICEF) While a number of factors contribute to a lack of education among children in developing nations, one key component is access to basic school supplies. 
However, this back-to-school season, U.S. parents, kids and teens are looking beyond their own school supply lists and making a difference in the lives of needy kids overseas.  By maximizing back-to-school sales, U.S. families are stocking up on items for Operation Christmas Child, a year-round project of international Christian relief and evangelism organization Samaritan's Purse, headed by Franklin Graham.  Participants fill shoe boxes with school materials, toys, necessity items, and letters of encouragement for children in poverty around the world. 
This shoe box packing effort, requiring months of organization and preparation, is expected to bless more than 9 million children this year suffering the effects of natural disaster, disease, war, terrorism, famine and poverty. In 2012 Operation Christmas Child anticipates reaching a milestone-collecting and delivering shoe boxes to more than 100 million children since the project began in 1993.  Through the power of a simple gift and the message of hope through Jesus Christ, children learn they are loved and not forgotten.  For many of these children, the shoe box will be the first gift they have ever received.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Summer Clearance and Back To School Finds

I LOVE CLEARANCE!!! Today I found a selection of items around town including...

-tape measures in fun colors clearanced to 25 cents each
-fun flip flops (patterned) at 97 cents each

Michael's (LOTS of clearance bins at 75% off)
- magnifying glasses at 25 cents each
- good quality jump ropes at 59 cents each
- beach balls at 25 cents each
- solid color flip flops at 74 cents each
- journals at 25 cents each Staples
- 1 cent packs of lined notebook paper (limit 5, $5 purchase required)

- princess jump ropes 50 cents each
- more school supplies
- zip lock bags on sale, plus used a printable coupon from

 I am looking forward to prices continuing to drop on summer items.... still hoping for more sports items and toys for boys.

A Kaleidoscope of Joy

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Host a Packing Party

When I think of an OCC Packing Party, I often think of the big ones... the ones that are community wide or with K-Love or a big church packing party. Big scale. But the reality is as awesome as those are... they are not the majority of packing parties. But a SMALL SCALE PACKING PARTY? This CAN happen!!! It is a fun and easy way to multiply the gifts to precious children and grow awareness as well.

Besides.. Who doesn't LOVE A PARTY??

Packing parties can come in all shapes and sizes and for all sorts of groups. They can end with just a couple boxes packed or a LOT of boxes packed. There are so many possibilities that I am just going to list a bunch.

Who can have a packing party???
- Women's groups, Men's groups, Bible Studies, Youth Groups
- Clubs - 4H, Scouting, Quilting clubs, Service Clubs, AWANAS, Campus Clubs.....
- Neighbors
- Birthday boy or girl
- Friends and Family 

How can you organize a packing party???
  1. Have everyone bring a bunch of a single type of item from a list... say one person brings toothpaste and toothbrush, another school supplies, another plush, another clothes, etc.
  2. Have everyone bring ONE item and put together a box or two
  3. Collect items at meetings or monthly making certain items the item of the month
  4. Get together and craft for the boxes throughout the year, then bring toiletries and school supplies, etc.
There are many possibilities. And every one of them is AWESOME because it results in more shoeboxes!

One blogger wrote a great blog on packing parties, so for more ideas check out

And remember that Operation Christmas Child WANTS to support you.... so there are resources available for you to order for free at Scroll down until you see Party Pack. They include:

Party Pack

(while supplies last) Conveniently designed for a party of 20. This pack contains everything you need for a fun-filled and successful OCC party:
  • Packing Party Hosting Guide
  • Magnet
  • Poster
  • Pen
  • Logo Stickers
  • Coloring Activity Pages
  • Pack A Box Brochures
  • Prayer Bookmarks
Nothing better than a PARTY so have FUN, have a PARTY, and help some children! 

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Cute Crocheted Dolly

Ok... this one is SO cute. Yea I say that often, but it IS right?? Right.

The full instructions and pattern can be found at

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Little Toddler Lovey

So cute, so soft, so sweet, and sew easy. The tutorial for these simple dolls that the creator calls gnomes but I call ADORABLE can be found at

I think these would be perfect for the 2-4 boxes... a treasured toy for a little girl or boy. :)

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Flip Flops + Oriental Trading Company

Now is the time to really start looking for bargain flip flops if you still want them for your shoebox(es). Michael's Craft stores have them at 74 cents at many stores.. which combined with their coupons can be a great deal... but other stores might also be closing out on this summer item. Also if you order from Oriental Trading Company for your shoebox(es) they currently have a promotion going: ORIENTAL TRADING FREE SHIPPING NO MINIMUM Order online by 11:59 p.m. CT, August 7, 2012, and get free standard shipping on any purchase, within the contiguous U.S. Additional charges apply for Express Shipping. Gift cards not included. Enter key code WCE3503 during checkout.

Box of Hope video

See a glimpse of the hope a simple shoebox brings into hurting lives.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Use Amazon???

Have you ever placed an order and thought.... "Oh, if I spend just a couple dollars more I would get free shipping!!" I have. And now I have a WONDERFUL SOLUTION. Order something for Operation Christmas Child!!!!

Recently I ordered a book for my daughter who was prepping for the ACT test (which she did SO well... so proud.... but anyway I digress) and the book cost $23. It was a product that would qualify for free shipping if I spent $25. Shipping on that heavy book was going to be $6. And I decided I would much rather buy $6 worth of stuff for the shoeboxes than pay shipping. And I found a 12 pack of finger puppets for $4. YAY. Soooo I spent $2 LESS than if I had paid shipping and got finger puppets for the shoeboxes!

I can't claim that this idea is all my own, because clipwithpurpose actually set up a shop of their own that has a bunch of stuff that could be bought inexpensively to help you get to your free shipping. You can find this store at

If you are packing many boxes, then her choices make SO much sense... big mega packs of items to add to a bunch of boxes. Maybe because you pack a lot, like I do, or maybe because you have a church or group packing party. In that case buying in bulk makes LOTS of SENSE. I have found other options than hers over time and they often vary, so if you want to search for different options go ahead. I have found great deals that way.

BUT if you are just packing a FEW boxes you can also use this! There are many items that could be bought for your shoeboxes this way. Jumpropes, harmonicas, recorders, toys, dolls, clothing, flip flips... that you could get essentially for free for your shoeboxes in this way.

FREE.. that is my FAVORITE WORD!


Here’s a wonderful deal for you at Rite Aid this week! Look for the oral care coupon book in store near the oral care aisle. You might want to ask the clerk if you don’t see one. I’m excited about this deal since toothbrush deals have been few and far between this year. Reach Toothbrushes $2 Use $2/2 Reach Toothbrushes printable and use $2/2 Reach Toothbrushes (Found in store in the Rite Aid Oral Care Booklet) Final Price: 2 for Free!