Thursday, December 26, 2013

Let the After Christmas Sales BEGIN!!! (Operation Christmas Child Shopping Season!)

Today is the beginning of the true after Christmas sales and a great time to begin shopping for next year's shoeboxes. The best sales will still be to come.... but some things are worth getting now. Especially if you do not think you will be able to keep checking for deeper discounts. Some of my favorite things to get:

Washcloths (last year I got Walmart's 18 packs of red, white, and green washcloths at 75% off, which is $1!)
Plush!!! The cute Christmas plush designed for the stockings are the perfect size for the shoebox. Walmart's started at 2.97 and at half off they are a much nicer quality than the dollar store plush at just 1.49. (Sometimes they make it to 75% off but not often.)

Cups (the cute Christmas cups are inexpensive to begin with, but on sale these become a nice cheerful practical gift for the shoeboxes.

Filler - the myriad of stocking stuffers out there are a lovely addition to the shoebox... from small toys, to hygiene items, these are fun to get.)

Candy Canes - colorful and delicious and long lasting, the boxes are at 50 cents now and usually go much lower, 25 cents most years, and often even 10 cents per box.

Don't forget, there are many stores with Christmas clearance and this will continue into the new year... Michaels and JoAnns, Rite Aid, etc. Happy Shopping!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

K Dove Distributing Shoeboxes in Ecuador!!

K Dove has been a huge supporter of Operation Christmas Child here in Southern Oregon... promoting it and being a drop off center... and now, one of their hosts is on a distribution in Ecuador!! Check out this video and be encouraged... and remember to pray! Your shoebox could be distributed any time now... or it could yet be months.... but none of that is a surprise to our God who is even now preparing your box to go to a specific child to bless them and show your love and His.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Airlift to the Philippines

NEW YORK — Franklin Graham, president of nonprofit Samaritan's Purse, joined project organizers, local families and survivors of Hurricane Sandy at one of New York City's major airports this week to personally send off more than 60,000 gifts to some of Typhoon Haiyan's most vulnerable victims in the Philippines.

"Do you know what these gifts are going to mean to these kids? It means that somebody loves them, it means they haven't been forgotten. It will mean everything in the world. It will give these little kids hope," Graham told more than 300 attendees at Thursday's event.

"It's about letting the children of the world to know that God loves them and God hasn't forgotten them," Graham added in his interview with The Christian Post. His Samaritan's Purse international relief organization has been delivering emergency aid to the Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan forced more than 3.9 million residents to flee their homes. The powerful Nov. 8 typhoon has killed at least 6,000 people and injured more than 27,000 others.

The organization's annual Operation Christmas Child outreach will be delivering shoe boxes stuffed with goodies and essentials to thousands of Filipino children to let them know that Christians on the other side of the world are praying for them and contributing to their needs.
 Read the full article and see the video at the Christian Post

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Multi-Packs to Fill Boxes on a Budget

One of my favorite ways to fill my boxes very reasonably is to use multipacks. There are so many options! If you start NOW over the year you can fill boxes for just a little at a time.

Dollar Tree:

12 pencil sharpeners, $1
Combs 12 pack, $1
3 packs of Dial soap, $1
Party Fillers such as mardi gras beads, noise makers, toy jewelry
Card games, 3 for $1


18 Washcloths  $4 (and the last two years I bought Christmas colored ones at 75% off so for just a dollar!)
Candy!! This is obvious... but worth mentioning. (Candy canes after Christmas and hard candy after Halloween.)
Socks or Underwear! These practical items generally are sold in multipacks. 

Oriental Trading Company:
All sorts of multipacks such as bouncy balls, stampers, cross necklaces, and even plush

Gliders, finger puppets,  play jewelry

And don't forget these other extras:

-Back to school supply sales such as penny deals at Staples!
-Playdough multipacks (often on sale)
-Plastic cups (holiday ones go on clearance after the holidays, think Christmas, Valentine's, and Easter)
-Hot Wheels 5 packs are often on sale, sometimes with coupons
-Stickers! Multipacks and books of stickers can be divided up

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Wake the World up to Jesus

Liliana is a 9 year old from Belleville, Michigan, who felt led to pack 230 shoeboxes for OCC this year. In 2 weeks, she's collected enough donations (and also held a fundraiser) to not only pack 225 boxes (and still counting), but to also cover the shipping costs for over 230 boxes. Her goal throughout this whole process is to 'Wake the world up to Jesus' one shoebox at a time. She wants the children who will receive her boxes to know 'just how special they are to God.' This picture shows the 225 boxes she's assembled so far.  (from Operation Christmas Child Facebook)

Can we get a WOW?? Look what ONE child can do!! What can WE do?

Here in Klamath Falls, our area collected close to 1600 shoeboxes this year... one of the biggest donations was from Bly, a small town, but who like Liliana had BIG HEART. For a couple of years one local teen packed many boxes fundraising at the Potato Festival. This last year, a dear friend on a fixed retirement income shopped throughout the year putting aside the shipping throughout the year to pack 20 boxes! Another quilted over 50 beautiful tote bags. The story of Liliana is amazing... and huge in scale... but it is not unique.

Sometimes we think I can only do one shoebox. Maybe that is true... and that ONE is HUGE. ONE shoebox can change eternity for a child... and the ripples from that can change a community. We can NEVER downplay the importance of ONE.... because one child is priceless...

But maybe, you can do more. Perhaps this coming year, your one will be two or ten or more. Perhaps this year, you will wake up the world to Jesus in a big way!

Monday, December 2, 2013

2 Pennies a Day.....

If you start NOW, putting pennies in a jar, at just 2 pennies per day, you will have the needed $7 to ship one shoebox in 2014. Most of us can afford just 2 cents a day.. .but maybe this makes you think bigger. Soooo for just 10 cents a day you can cover the shipping for 5 shoeboxes! 10 cents a DAY!

 OK.... so now maybe you are thinking, sure the shipping... but... If you are watchful throughout the year, and if you check here for deals... you can also FILL those shoeboxes inexpensively! Last year, with sales and crafting and coupons I packed my shoeboxes for an average of under $5 per box.. and that is more than the year before. You can do it too! Think of the blessings you can give a child next year for Christmas!

Even now, keep your eyes out for sale items... Michaels bins, the clearance aisle, etc... but AFTER Christmas, watch for after Christmas sales! I will share all year right here... together we can change the lives of children!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thank You.. and Thanks be to God!

Happy Thanksgiving! Today we give thanks for the millions of shoebox gifts that will soon be on their way to brighten the lives of hurting children around the world!

"Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endures to all generations." – Psalm 100:4-5  
The above pic and message is from the Operation Christmas Child FB page and I could not skip sharing it.... on this Thanksgiving there is so much to be grateful for including EACH and EVERY shoebox you packed and for each child who will be blessed.

Today, I hope you are blessed as you celebrate all that our Heavenly Father has provided. 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Collection Week is Over but You can STILL SEND A SHOEBOX

Did you pack a shoebox and forget to drop it off? You can still mail it! Learn more at

Maybe you forgot completely, or just learned about this, and now you too want to bless a child in need with a shoebox gift and the message of Jesus Christ?  It is NOT TOO LATE!!

“Look here, this is Si Robertson, all right? Hey, Jack, share your love by packing a shoebox for Operation Christmas Child, okay?”

“It’s on like bing bong, Jack!”

Ya’ll know that you can pack shoebox gifts, but did you know you can also build them right here on the internet, and Operation Christmas Child will pack and send them for you?
Take the Uncle Si Shoebox Challenge and join us to meet the goal of 25,000 shoebox gifts built online this year, in honor of Si and his love for children.
“Look, I’m 65 years old, okay, but I’m really 10 years old,” Si said. “I refuse to grow up. I’m always gonna be a child, okay? So that’s why children have a special place in my heart.”

Monday, November 25, 2013

Cute Ribbon Hair Bows

I love these! Friends of mine posted some cute bows they had made... and of course, Operation Christmas Child came to mind. When I asked about them, they shared the video where they learned how to make them... and we WILL be doing this at our next craft day. Ribbon and hot glue! Love it!!!

So now you want to know how to make them too.. right? Right! Because they really are so sweet! We will make them at our Share the Love Valentine's Craft Day... and I can't wait!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Collection Week is Almost Over....

Tomorrow is the final day! In Klamath you must drop your box off between 9:30-10:30 to get it in on time! The truck will leave shortly after. But, stores are still open... you can finish your box!

I had a family emergency that pulled me away during the middle of Collection Week, but the great team of volunteers continued on.... Look at ALL THOSE shoeboxes and cartons! So many children will be blessed BECAUSE OF YOU!

Thank you for packing shoeboxes! Your shoeboxes will make a huge difference in the life of a child!

Thank you for all our great volunteers!!

And thank you to all who have covered this ministry in prayer. That part doesn't end with the end of Collection Week. Keep praying for these shoeboxes that still have a long journey ahead of them... and pray for each child who will receive the box.... and for the volunteers that will make its delivery possible.


PS Thanks to Cassandra for this photo collage!

Sending Blessings Through Operation Christmas Child

“After an OCC distribution, a pastor took the volunteer team to the inner city portion of the dump where, from within the bus, they were able to witness the daily life of those living in the worst conditions. Vultures swarmed around the dump, scavenging alongside the people for their own food. The people wore coverings over their mouths to keep out flies, smells and dust. The homes in this area were nothing more than pallets, many broken and discarded, with cardboard and plastic bags for roofs. Some team members wept, hardly able to believe people of the world lived like this. After taking the pastor back, the team wanted to pray for him. Before they could begin, he began praying for them, thanking God for the blessings they brought to him and his people.” – OCC Volunteer

Adrian was just a small child when he was abandoned by his parents. He grew up in Ecuador thinking nobody loved him, and he encountered problems in school. His life was changed forever at age 12 when his aunt and uncle invited him to an Operation Christmas Child gift distribution at a local church. “There, I met Christ,” Adrian said. “Now I know I’m not alone. God loves me and He loves me a lot. Thank you for the shoebox and the biggest gift of all, Jesus.”

Friday, November 22, 2013

Sending Hope and Joy and Love to a Child ~ Operation Christmas Child

A child, living, sleeping, eating in a dump. Digging each day for items to use or sell for scrap. This is the reality for many children around the world. We want to run in and rescue them all. We can't. But we can take a life of grey and shades of brown, and bring in the color of hope. The Gospel Message brings that hope and goes to the children who receive the boxes.

I love one of the stories shared by Mary Damron about one of these children. 

MARY DAMRON -- Shoebox Corner -- It sad to say but many many children live on garbage dumps around the world. Even eating the rotten food that others have thrown out. Our children could never imagine that everything they have is someone else's trash. On a dump in Panama, one little 5 yr old girl shied away from all of us. She was covered in filth, hair matted and had a horrible smell. As she sat and opened her box, she carefully laid everything on the lid, trying not to get anything dirty. She suddenly squealed with joy as she had found a treasure. A plastic necklace that cost about a dollar. She put the necklace on and began to press it to her neck. Then she climb up onto an old rusty chair so everyone could see her and started blowing kisses. I know she felt like a little princess. In that moment you can understand the power of a simple shoebox. It doesn't change the circumstances for the children but it changes how they feel about themselves. For the first time in many of their lives, they feel special. PLEASE, PLEASE, Don't feel guilty because of what you and your family have. Just be grateful and share your blessings with others.

 A child laying hurting in a hospital. We can send joy. The stuffed animal the child takes into their arms and hugs. The first toy car a boy has ever had to zoom across the bed. If you have never done so, take some time to watch cups of joy videos or the ones shared here.... over and over you will see such moments of joy. 

And love.. ah.. love. The child who opens that box will feel our love... the love of someone they never met nor likely will, but who cares. And more the love of a Savior who orchestrated the details of a box so that something within speaks to the heart of a child and says I see you, I know you, and I love you. I am always amazed at the stories of the shoeboxes.... click the Impact Stories Tab above to read about what God is doing.

A former blog of a lovely woman who went on a distribution, wrote this last year:
Let’s say that I’m someone you don’t know in the Unites States, and I have lots of opportunities to do charitable things around the holidays.  What would you say to me – why should I pack an Operation Christmas Child Shoebox?

Edison: You should definitely pack a shoebox.  This is something that goes beyond the toys, beyond the candy, beyond the booklet [The Greatest Journey discipleship program booklet] – this is something that goes straight to the hearts of children.  It’s a box full of love, full of hope that you bring into the country.  When you grow up in an environment like this, you feel unloved.  You wonder, “Will God really care about me?  Look where I live!  I don’t have anything: I don’t have food, electricity, water or health care, my school isn’t good…” But when you bring in an Operation Christmas Child shoebox, the whole thing changes and the child starts to see things differently.  It’s like a huge sign in the middle of the desert telling them there’s water here, and it’s the water of the love of God.  The water of the hope that Jesus can give to the hearts of people.  I think that’s the whole reason behind packing an Operation Christmas Child shoebox.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Where will our Shoeboxes Go????

Here is the current expected list of where our shoeboxes will go from the West Coast...

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Love and Shoeboxes Going to the Philippines!

Shoeboxes from here often go to the Philippines.. it is the area we pray for year round.. and now in the face of the tragedy, Samaritan's Purse is responding with help in the name of Jesus.. and with SHOEBOXES.

This year OCC plans to send over 500,000 shoebox gifts to children in the Philippines. Visit the Samaritan's Purse website to learn how you can donate to the victims of Typhoon Haiyan.
Let's continue to pray for God's hand in this situation and for each and every shoebox that goes to the Philippines that it goes with the fullness of God's love and with the Gospel message. 

Sunday, November 17, 2013

It is Collection Week!!!

YAY! It is here! Collection Week! So get your shoebox and bring it into your local drop off point! You can find out where and when to bring in your box at

If you are in the Klamath Are of Oregon then your relay center is at Calvary Chapel, next to the Y at 1201 S Alameda Ave. And I can't wait to see you!

View Larger Map

Monday Nov. 18, 11am-1pm
Tuesday, Nov. 19 – Saturday, Nov. 23, 3:30pm-5:30pm
Sunday, Nov. 24, 12pm-4pm
Monday, Nov. 25, 9:30am-10:30am

Need to know HOW to pack a shoebox?

Friday, November 15, 2013

Sending Love ~ Special Touches

Sure, we fill the Operation Christmas Child with lots of great stuff... toiletries, school supplies, toys, hard candy, etc.... but I love to include something personal too. So what kinds of special touches can we include??? The ideas are endless!

A photo!!! Story after story reveals how treasured these photos are to the children who receive the shoeboxes. They can put a face to the gift... and know that many will be kept and treasured for years.

A letter. Yes, I know, these gifts do not often even go to English speaking nations... even so the letter is a treasure to the child. Many many times they will be able to get someone to translate right there at the distribution. English is a common language around the world. I have even heard of them keeping it and getting it translated years later. Speak love and care into their lives in the letter.

You can use the form they have to print that gives guidance as to what to write... this is perfect for children sending boxes but I believe it is a nice option for anyone. It has a spot to draw or paste a photo, maps to show where you live, and more.

A craft: oh there are so many wonderful items you can make to put in the shoeboxes. From the simplest to those for skilled crafters there are hundreds of ideas. There are several pinterest boards linked in the sidebar to get you started with ideas if you need help, or click on the craft tab at the top of the blog for ideas I have posted.

And here are a few other ideas that I think are sweet:

And most important... with every box, pack it FULL of PRAYER. Thank you so much for packing a shoebox and blessing a child. May the precious child who receives your box feel your love and experience the love and tender care of God within it.

Want to know more about Operation Christmas Child and how to pack a shoebox??? Go to

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Packing Shoeboxes with Your Children

Oh my goodness how I love this video I found online... and so here I am posting once again about my favorite thing about packing shoeboxes... packing WITH children.

I started when my kids were young... they learn about giving, about loving others, about sharing God's love. Little Samuel in the video is not yet 3 and HE gets it... take your kids and shop with them. Pray with them over the shoeboxes. Pack as a family. And enjoy! I have such tender memories of packing shoeboxes with my children.. and I still love doing packing parties with kids. Today I did so with my Good News Club at a local public grade school and the children declared it their favorite club day EVER. Teaching children to love giving is a great blessing and joy.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Oksana's Story ~ A Life Changing Gift of Hope

I love the stories of the shoeboxes... to see what God is doing through these simple gifts. Here is one I rediscovered thanks to Abi, our local relay coordinator. If you enjoy the stories of the shoeboxes, you can find many many more in video and in written form by clicking the Impact Story tab at the top of the blog. May you be blessed.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

How to Pack a Shoebox for Operation Christmas Child Instructional Video

I love this clear presentation of how to pack a shoebox, what to put in it, how to wrap it, what NOT to put in it and more...

Pack a Shoebox "Cups" or is that "Boxes" song and video

This is so cute, fun, and NOW and would be perfect to share with your youth as they pack shoeboxes.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Australian Girl has Video on Packing LOTS of Shoeboxes on a Budget!

Loved this girls passion and her smart shoebox packing so I had to share her video! Keep in mind that in the US, our suggested donation is $7, not 9 as in Australia (currency differences.) We can pack toothpaste, but like Australia, no liquids. We can pack hard candy, but no perishables, such as chocolate or other foods.

I hope you are blessed and motivated by this video as I was... and maybe you will get some new ideas on how to pack more for less.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

What Do I Pack???

Sometimes people struggle to know WHAT to pack, especially for the little ones and the older ones, and that likely explains why the vast majority of boxes are for 5-9 year olds. So I thought I would link to my earlier posts on this topic.

What to Pack for 2-4 Year Olds

What to Pack for 10-14 Year Olds Girls and Boys

And because they might be helpful links too

100 Ideas for a Girl Box

100 Ideas for a Boy Box

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Kids Packing Shoeboxes for Kids

I first got involved with Operation Christmas Child when my kids were little in the simple way most of us do, packing shoeboxes. I wanted my children to learn about giving, about praying and loving others, even those they may never meet in this lifetime, and about the Great Commission. Operation Christmas Child gave my children a simple way to do that and it was SO meaningful to them.

Fast forward a decade.. and as a year round volunteer I am even MORE passionate about OCC. With each story and video my heart for this ministry grows, but even now my FAVORITE way to pack shoeboxes is WITH KIDS!

This past weekend Calvary Chapel Klamath Falls Oregon had their packing party with the children's ministry. They collect items all year round, based on sales, and now they get to pack the boxes. The kids LOVE IT. They are blessed by giving. And I am blessed watching them and listening to them as they carefully pick items to bless a child.

Wednesday night another church in town will have their packing party.... they gather in a blitz in the weeks leading up to the party. And these children will also get to share in the joy of giving and praying and loving others.

Next week, the Good News Club I teach will also pack shoeboxes.... again I will share the stories of the work God is doing through these boxes... we will pray... and pack... and be blessed.

Packing parties are happening around my county, across the state, the US, and in many parts of the world.... RIGHT NOW... so that other children will be blessed, and receive these gifts of love, with the Gospel message. 

Children giving to children... it is a beautiful thing.

Friday, November 1, 2013

2013 Peru Distribution

Some of the boxes from our area went to Peru this year... do you see YOUR box? Enjoy!

Shop Amazon through Amazon Smile to benefit Samaritan's Purse!

From Clip With Purpose:

Amazon Smile 

Amazon has started a give back program to a charity of your choice!  I chose Samaritan’s Purse (the parent organization of Operation Christmas Child).  It costs nothing to participate – a portion of your purchases goes directly to your charity.
AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support your favorite charitable organization every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at, you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to your favorite charitable organization. You can choose from nearly one million organizations to support.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Uncle Si joins OCC

Hey, Pack a Shoebox, Jack!

Start Packing for National Collection Week

As Si Robertson might say, “Take a sip o’ tea, mow a little grass” and
get ready to pack shoeboxes! The beloved uncle of the family that makes the famous
Duck Commander duck calls has teamed up with Operation Christmas Child to get
the word out about sharing the Gospel through a shoebox gift.

National Collection Week is coming November 18-25. Along with Si,
you can be a part of sending love and joy to children around the world.

Watch this brand new video to find out what Si wanted to pack in his
shoebox—and what actually made the final cut. You'll also find
exclusive behind-the-scenes footage from Si’s video shoot, and some
great ideas for packing your own shoeboxes.

Uncle Si pack a shoebox


Discover the destination of your shoebox by making your $7 per box
shipping donation online. Samaritan's Purse will send an email
telling you the destination of your gift, along with information about
Operation Christmas Child in that country.

Donate and Follow Your Box


Remember to drop off your shoeboxes November 18-25.
It’s easy to find the nearest collection site with our online locator. You can
also build a shoebox online with our fun, interactive website.

Find Your Closest Site

Monday, October 28, 2013

37 cent batteries (if you have the coupons) at Walmart

Do you ever include items that require batteries in your shoeboxes? They sure can be fun, but consider sending extra batteries as they can be costly and difficult to get for many of our recipients. So it is great to get a great deal. I found this on krazycouponlady... YAY.

Batteries at Walmart as low as 37 cents! Do you ever include items in your shoeboxes that take batteries? Remember to include extras.
Buy 2 Energizer Max AA or AAA, 8 ct $6.37, regular price
Buy 2, Submit for $10.00 Walmart Gift Card Rebate
Use two $1.00/1 Energizer Batteries or Flashlight from SS 10/27 (exp 12/7)
Pay $10.74, Submit for $10.00 Walmart Gift Card
Final Price: $0.37 each, when you buy 2

Printable BULK LABELS for your shoebox packing party

So excited that Clip With Purpose (an awesome OCC blog) shared this printable... when you are doing a LOT of shoeboxes, printing them a couple per page is wasteful and so is cutting apart all of the brochures... of course, we all COULD do this ourselves... but I did not. So THANKS.

Clip with Purpose posted: "Are you printing out your labels and needs LOTS of them? Our friend Ray helped us out and made printable sheets for us! There are 12 to a page. Some sheets have no age checked, but if you need to save time....print out the ones that are! (Boys first, then keep scrolling to find the Girls.) Just select which page you want to print when your printer screen prompt comes up!"

Friday, October 18, 2013

MyFaithRadio interview worth a listen

From My Faith Radio:

We’ve heard of the ministry of Samaritan’s Purse’s Operation Christmas Child. We’ve maybe even packed a few shoeboxes full of goodies, but where do these shoeboxes go? More importantly, who gets these shoeboxes? Ted and PK were joined in studio with Vladimir “Ted” Foreman. He was a Russian orphan after the Cold War, and his story is very moving.

Get some tissues, and then sit down and listen....

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Free Toothpaste and Soap and 24 cent toothbrushes at RiteAid starting Sunday

$3+UP wyb Colgate Max Fresh Toothpaste 6 oz., $3.50 Limit 2
Use $0.50/1 Colgate toothpaste, 4 oz + exp. 10/26/13 (SS 10/13/13)
Or $0.75/1 Colgate Toothpaste printable
FINAL PRICE: FREE after $3 up reward

Dove or Caress Bar Soap, 2 Pack or Body Wash 12 oz., 2/$6
Use $2/1 Caress bar soap 6 pk. + or body wash 12 oz + exp. 11/10/13 (RP 10/13/13)
Vaseline Intensive Care Lotion 10 oz., 2/$6
Or $1/1 Dove Body Wash, exp. 10/27/13 (RP 09/29/13 R)
FINAL PRICE: FREE wyb (2) Caress Bodywash after +UP

$2+UP wyb Reach Manual Toothbrush 1 ct., Colgate Total Advanced Floss-Tip or Sensitive ProRelief Manual Toothbrush 1 ct., $2.99 Limit 2
Use $0.75/1 Reach Toothbrush printable
Or $0.75/1 Reach Toothbrush, exp. 11/2/13 (SS 08/25/13)
FINAL PRICE: 24¢ each after +ups

Friday, October 11, 2013

Samaritan's Purse Gift Catalog is Here

Dear Friends,
Franklin Graham
I meet people around the world who long for the peace the angels announced two thousand years ago, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” (Luke 2:14, ESV).
Through the worldwide work of Samaritan’s Purse, the Lord gives us opportunities to share the true meaning of Christmas and the Good News of salvation with millions who are living in despair. You can be involved in what God is doing by giving to the projects we have featured below.
Thank you for your prayers and for making it possible for us to earn a hearing for the Gospel. May God bless you.

New Operation Christmas Child Blogger

Well, I always love to see more blogs about Operation Christmas Child... whether a blogger who blogs year round on other topics but posts about OCC at this time of year OR someone like me who blogs year round about Operation Christmas Child. There are so many wonderful bloggers out there.... like Clip With Purpose or Life Inside the Shoebox... but each one offers its own perspective... so the more the merrier.

Without further ado....


Monday, October 7, 2013

A Story of Redemption and Forgiveness ~ Alex

Go now, do not wait, and read the story of an amazing young man and how God reached down and worked powerfully in his life.

Here is the accompanying video:

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

A Wonderful New Book now on the Shelves and More Announcements by Samaritan's Purse

Samaritans Purse

A Story of Simple Gifts Hits Bookstores

Operation Christmas Child: A Story of Simple Gifts has just landed on
shelves and already it is generating a lot of excitement.

Now available in stores across the country, Franklin Graham’s newest
book weaves the God-saturated story of the ministry’s beginning with some
of the Christ-exalting stories of lives that have been forever changed
by the power of a simple gift.

It’s a moving tribute that has been two decades in the making, as
Operation Christmas Child celebrates 20 years of delivering
more than 100 million gift-filled shoeboxes to the remotest
parts of the world and into the outstretched arms of boys and girls
who need to know God's saving love.

Order your copy of Operation Christmas Child: A Story of Simple Gifts
today. It's a wonderful way to commemorate and celebrate as we approach
National Collection Week, November 18-25.

Buy your book online

A Story of Simple Gifts includes the remarkable tale of Alex Nsengimana, a survivor
of the brutal genocide in Rwanda. God used a simple, gift-filled shoebox
to put Alex on a journey to faith that led him to forgive the man who
murdered his grandmother and uncle.

Watch Alex’s story on Oct. 7

Operation Christmas Child has been sharing God’s Greatest Gift with
children around the world for 20 years. Brighten up your packing party or
event with green, white, and red commemorative balloons .

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Shoeboxes ~ Instruments of God

“We are but the instruments or assistants, by whom God works.” -Martin Luther
I love this reality. Such a simple thing, packing a shoebox. And yet, over and over again I read stories about the amazing things God is doing through these simple gifts. I am awestruck and so I share a few with you.....

MacedoniaAt our Celebration meeting there was a girl, age 21, that I saw for a first time. She came along with a pastor from Veles. We talked about the project, and a pastor’s wife mentioned that they were distributing gifts this year to street children in Skopje. After the meeting the girl came to me and asked: “Is this the organization that gives gifts to children, even in the orphnage in Skopje?” I answered “yes” and she told me that 7 years ago, she lived in the orphanage and received a gift there, as well as correspondence course and a booklet. She received Chrisst as her savior, and, when she was 18, she had to leave the orphanage and went to live with relatives in Veles. She found a church there, and later, when she was 19, went for a year in Bible school in Serbia. I introduced her to Rule, pastor’s wife that was distributing the boxes in the orphanage at that time, and it was a wonderful meeting.

Dominican Republic:  “I have three little brothers and my parents died in an accident and there was a Pastor who came to invite us to his church where they would give us some gifts. But as my youngest brother was sick, the lady who takes care of us said that we wouldn’t go because of my little brother’s illness; there was nobody else to take care of us if we went. I went outside and sat in front of the house crying, and suddenly I saw someone approaching the home and bringing some gifts. That made cry again but this time of happiness because God sent that person to us with the OCC gifts and also with the book the Greatest Gift. Later they invited us to study at their Bible club and the lady who takes care of us also goes with us to church. Although we don’t have our mom and dad anymore we feel good because through those gifts we got to meet God Who never leaves us and also we have a family at church and many other children there whom we can call brothers, now we are happy.” Amauras Vargas, 12 yrs old 

Tajikistan: Madina, “River Of Life” church member
We took the OCC presents to the children in the Cancer Department of City Hopsital, Dushanbe. We have had the wonderful opportunity to tell those children about Jesus and to give them gifts. So much joy, and the hope returned to them – someone remembers us, someone cares…After this we have got the opportunity to pray for them. One girl from Kulob, 13 years old, has lost her sight and hearing because of cancer, and she was swollen. After some days we came back to visit her – and what a miracle! The hearing was restored, she was able to read, and swollenness disappeared.

Philippines: Hannah Ruth, is a lovely two-year old girl. I spotter her cheerfully cuddling her new baby doll from the shoebox. Then her mother told me that one day, along the street, Hannah found a ragged doll with a broken head in a garbage bag. She brought it home and used to place it beside her when she sleeps. And how happy she was when she received a brand new baby doll that just looks like the same with her old doll. Her whole family was amazed at how God answered that little desire of Hannah's heart. With this incident, they were reminded once again that truly God answers prayers. God can hear every word, thought, and desire. Even the slightest whisper of a child, He can decipher.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

The Gift of Individuality


The Gift of Individuality

Packing shoebox gifts for Operation Christmas Child helps a family share their passions with children in need

For Bryan Ledbetter, giving a gift can help him express his individuality just as much as doing tricks on his BMX bike does.

When he first started riding BMX, he never dreamed of the impact that it would have on his life. Years later, he now has a family and business of his own, and he performs Flatland BMX shows with the King BMX Stunt Team. The sport taught him motivation, determination, confidence, and self-sacrifice—all qualities that he hopes will be instilled in his three children.

One way that he and his wife, Ginine, teach their children about giving and self-sacrifice is through packing shoebox gifts for Operation Christmas Child. They have been packing shoebox gifts as a family for about 10 years, since their son Miles was a baby. The gifts are sent by Samaritan’s Purse to children around the world who are in need.

Miles, Tessa, and Julian all love to put items that they enjoy in their boxes, said Ginine.
“If we’re at the store and the kids see something fun, they see something that they like, I hope that they say, ‘Hey, if I get one of these because I think it’s super cool, can we get an extra one and put it in the closet in the Operation Christmas Child storage bin?’” she said.

Once, Tessa picked out a doll that she wanted for herself, and decided to pack it in her shoebox. Miles packed a hat that matched one he picked up for himself on a family shopping trip.

“In that box, you can represent what you like, what you believe in, your passions,” Bryan said. “Operation Christmas Child is just really unique in the fact that you are putting some of yourself into a box, and it is getting delivered to a child.”

Whether it’s a box of crayons that inspires a child to become an artist, or a toy stethoscope that makes a child dream of becoming a doctor, “You never know what you put in that shoebox, how it could affect the child,” Bryan said. “Just put into that box what your passions are and maybe it will spark an idea for them that they can chase after for their lifetime.”
The Ledbetters love the fact that shoeboxes are so simple to pack and send, but the boxes share more than just a few toys and other items with the children who receive them.

“That they discover the gift of Christ and what He did for us, that’s the ultimate goal,” Bryan said.

The Ledbetters were overjoyed recently when Miles decided that he wanted to follow Jesus.

“The same joy I have of seeing my kids come to Christ, I have in packing that shoebox and knowing that I’m planting a seed,” Bryan said. “And hopefully those kids will come to know Christ.”

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Pack Shoeboxes with My Hope America

Pack with My Hope America

Spread the Gospel Abroad and at Home

My Hope America is based on a simple biblical principle introduced by the Apostle Matthew who invited people into his home to meet Jesus (Matthew 9:9–10). You too can “become a Matthew.” The nine training episodes below will equip you to invite others to hear the life-changing message of the Gospel in your home, church, or another gathering place. Register your packing party and receive a package of videos featuring a new message of hope from Billy Graham, dynamic music, and powerful testimonies. You can also order a free Operation Christmas Child party pack, which includes everything you need to host 20 guests.

Have you ever wanted to find a way to share the Gospel with your neighbors? Family or friends? Have you wanted to share about Operation Christmas Child?? My Hope America is Billy Graham's upcoming program with a vision for sharing the Gospel in a meaningful way with neighbors and friends so that this nation is reached for Christ!

My Hope America has training videos and aids so that this is VERY doable. Sometimes this can be well outside our comfort zone.... but some things are WORTH stepping outside our comfort zone.

Visit the site, watch the videos, learn more, and pray about this. It is a huge opportunity!

Children packing Shoeboxes.... and VeggieTales

I love packing shoeboxes. I love knowing that as I put together this box, full of items picked with care, and prayed over, that I am blessing a child in need. That the box will bless them, help them, bring them some joy, and most importantly be accompanied by the Gospel message.

BUT... how I got started and still a HUGE part of my passion for Operation Christmas Child is having KIDS pack shoeboxes FOR KIDS. I started with my own children. I wanted them to care about others and WANT to give. I wanted them to be more passionate about the Gospel message.

So much of what we do as parents, Sunday School teachers, club leaders, etc in teaching our kids the value of giving is somewhat abstract to the child. Even when we share missionary stories with the children, collecting coins is not personal to the child. It is almost detached.

But packing a shoebox is PERSONAL! When a child packs a shoebox they learn that other children in the world may never have received a gift, EVER. That the child may never see a dentist and is glad for a toothbrush and toothpaste. That this child may be rejoicing at receiving school supplies and the opportunity to go to school. As they pack practical items in the ONE gift this child may ever receive they learn about their own blessings and within them grows a desire to give and share.

When they pack a shoebox, the child can't help but think about the child who will receive the gift... you can share with the child who is GIVING about how they are partnering with the local church or missionary so that the Gospel message will go with the box. You can PRAY for the child, that they would receive Christ. That God would USE their gift to bring MANY to Christ. As they write a letter or note, they can express God's love and their care.

Shoeboxes are REAL. They are such a tangible way to show God's love to the child RECEIVING the shoebox... but it is also a TANGIBLE way to give and to participate in missions.

Oh... and I mentioned Veggie Tales. Didn't I??? Well, when I think of kids and Operation Christmas Child I also can't help but think about some famous partners with OCC, VeggieTales. Once again they are partnering with Operation Christmas Child to share about the ministry of Samaritan's Purse in reaching children with the Gospel of Christ in a simple shoebox. 

Sunday, September 22, 2013

FREE or better than FREE Toothbrush or Toothpaste

Head over to Rite Aid this week and get a couple of free items for your shoebox!

Crest Pro-Health Toothpaste, 6 oz $3.00
Oral-B Pro-Health Floss, 38.2-54.6 yds $3.00
Oral-B Pro-Health Toothbrush, 1 ct $3.00
Buy 1, Receive $3.00 +Up Reward, Limit 2

If you use printable coupon from or have a coupon from your paper this can be a moneymaker. 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Limitless Love

One of the beautiful things Operation Christmas Child is that when you pack that shoebox, you pack it with love and prayers, it is sorted with love and prayers, and is distributed by a local church or ministry with love and prayer, and God multiplies that love with His endless love.... and the child, who receives it receives that gift of limitless love... that shows that child that they ARE loved, by you, by the local church, and most importantly by God. Love is powerful. It changes lives. It heals, it hopes, it restores. And you do that, with your simple shoebox.

Pack a shoebox. Share the love.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

BACK ONLINE.. with 60 days to go!!

Well, I finally emerged from the fog that was sending my girl and partner in OCC off to college. SHE is doing great and I am ready to stop moping. LOL... so onto Operation Christmas Child!!

We are moving into the home stretch! With 60 days until Collection week, we are moving into busy season.

If you are packing shoeboxes... watch for back to school and end of season clearance items for your shoeboxes. Don't forget to college soap if you go to a hotel. And keep praying for the child who will receive your box. If you are crafty, check the tab above for ideas to make things for the shoebox, or check some of the pinterest links in the sidebar for more ideas.

If you are in Klamath, we have several upcoming events... On October 5, Saturday, at 10 am, at Calvary Chapel we will be having our Kickoff event! Our area coordinators will be in attendance and giving a presentation to us... We will also have info, items like balloons for your church or group, and some GO BOXES for you or your church to use for packing shoeboxes. As always feel free to contact me if you need support.

Also in Klamath we will be having a craft event in October. Watch here if you are interested for all the details. :) I am still working out the extras.

If you would like me to talk to your group, church, or pastor about Operation Christmas Child let me know. If you have donations of items for area packing parties, contact me. Let's make this a great year! Each shoebox makes a difference!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

On the Horizon... and why I Haven't Been Posting

As you may have noticed, my blog is quiet at the moment.... but this is very temporary. My daughter, and fellow Operation Christmas Child volunteer is leaving for college.... and with a quick visit to grandparents beforehand and the chaos and emotions that come with this huge life change, this blog has been put on the back burner for the moment, but... I wanted you to know what is coming up.

We have several events coming up in the next months including another craft event, a table at the Klamath Children's Ministry conference, and hopefully, a countdown event here in Klamath where you can come to get materials and motivation for Operation Christmas Child. Details will follow.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Crafting Party in Klamath was a BLESSING...

Thanks to those who attended... I hope to get pictures up soon but please be patient... I will be visiting my family and taking my daughter to college over the next two weeks.

I love meeting others who love Operation Christmas Child.... today I met a lovely young lady who takes it on herself to pack a LOT of boxes and even does a fundraiser to help fill them each year! Her family also came and helped... with a wide range of ages involved in the process. We also had some of my dear friends from Calvary Chapel come and craft as well. Loads of school supplies were decorated and (hopefully) fun was had by all.

I look forward to getting in ONE more crafting party in early October. Please watch here or on facebook for upcoming details.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Joy is Contagious... Share the Joy

I have shared this clip several times now... but it never grows old... and perhaps you haven't seen it yet. And note, he hasn't even OPENED the box yet.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Klamath Area OCC CRAFT EVENT Saturday, August 17, from 1-4

Hi all... we are going to have another craft day this weekend.... at Calvary Chapel Klamath Falls where we will do our crafting for the shoeboxes. All supplies will be there for you to use... just come and enjoy the fellowship, fun, and crafting! We will be decorating school supplies for the shoeboxes.

Sunday, August 11, 2013


This week at Staples there are some AMAZING deals...

Home Select Pocket Tissues $0.01
With Minimum $5.00 Purchase, Limit 6

Staples 1-Subject Notebook, 70 sheets $0.01
With Minimum $5.00 Purchase, Limit 6

Pilot Bottle2Pen Retractable Ballpoint Pens, 5 ct $5.29
Buy 1, Submit for $5.29 Easy Rebate, Limit 1
Pay $5.29, Submit for $5.29 Easy Rebate
Final Price: Free 

Staples Photo Plus 4″ x 6″ Gloss Paper, 60 ct $9.99
Buy 1, Submit for $6.99 Easy Rebate, Limit 4
Use $3.00/1 In-Ad Coupon, Limit one per customer
Pay $6.99, Submit for $6.99 Easy Rebate
Final Price: Free 

Hammermill Copy Plus Copy Paper $6.99
Buy 1, Submit for $5.99 Easy Rebate, Limit 2
Use $1.00/1 In-Ad Coupon, Limit one per customer
Pay $5.99, Submit for $5.99 Easy Rebate
Final Price: Free 

Staples Pastel 8.5″ x 11″ Colored Paper, 500 sheets $8.99
Buy 1, Submit for $5.99 Easy Rebate, Limit 4
Use $3.00/1 In-Ad Coupon, Limit one per customer
Pay $5.99, Submit for $5.99 Easy Rebate
Final Price: Free4

Not free or a penny but worth noting:

Staples Translucent Pencil Box $0.50
Limit 2

Pentel Hi-Polymer Erasers, 3 ct $0.50
Limit 2 

Thursday, August 8, 2013

OCC at the Klamath County Fair

If you are in the Klamath Area, and you come to the fair... Operation Christmas Child has a booth there... stop by and say hi!!!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

iHomeschool Network brings together Homeschoolers and Operation Christmas Child with the $10 Challenge!

Last year iHomeschool had a link up for OCC and this year they are doing it AGAIN... as a homeschooling mom myself I find this partnership of sorts VERY neat!

You can learn more at or around iHomeschool's network! I can't wait to see the linkup!

I am going to try to participate in the $10 challenge too! Sounds like fun! Great deals to be had right now! 

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Walmart Clearance

Lots of clearance at Walmart right now... today I picked up $3 sundresses for girls and some fashion tank tops for women for $2. Jump ropes and recorders and other dollar aisle items are marked down too! Check out YOUR Walmart and share what you find.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Deals for the week of 8/4/13

RITE AID : Did you take advantage of the free toothbrushes last week? If so you have Up Rewards to use..... here are some possibilities:

Carmex Lip Balm, 0.15-0.35 oz $1.50 each, when you buy 3
Buy 3, Receive $3.00 +Up Reward, Limit 2
Final price 50 cents each

Conair Colorvibes Brush $2.99
Scunci Elastics $2.99

Buy 1, Receive $2.00 +Up Reward, Limit 4
Use $2.00/1 – Conair or Scunci Tool or Fashion Accessory, regularly $3.99 or higher – ( if included 
Pay $0.99, Receive $2.00 +Up Reward
Final Price: $1.01 Moneymaker   or 99 cents each if no matching coupon

Crayola Chalks, 12 ct $0.49

17 cent notebooks
25 cent crayons or 50 cent for crayolas
Bic Cristal Pens, 10 ct $0.97, regular price
Use $1.00/1 Bic Stationery Product, Limit 4 like coupons per household per day from SS 8/4 (exp 9/15)
Final Price: $0.03 Moneymaker 

Staples Filler Paper 120 sheets $0.01 (with minimum $5 purchase, limit 5)
Bic Mechanical Pencils 5 pk. $0.25 ( with minimum $5 purchase, limit 2)

Westcott 5 inch scissors, 2/pack $1 Limit 2

Friday, August 2, 2013

Michael's Sales Event

Wooo hoooooo!!! I was at Michael's today and their huge clearance event is all SALES not clearance for the purpose of the coupons... so you can use the 20% off entire purchase to get additional discounts on the flip flops which are already 70% off! And MORE.. so check out your Michaels and see what they have!

Crafting With Kids For Kids

I love to include handmade items in our shoeboxes..... I feel as though the child who receives it can feel the love and prayers that go with the shoebox. And I love to pack shoeboxes with children so that they can minister to another in a meaningful way. 

SO crafting with kids for the shoeboxes is a natural extension... but sometimes it can be challenging to find easy crafts that are worth including in the boxes. So I thought I would pull together a variety of ideas... this will be the first in a series of Kids Crafts.

The possibilities are endless for decorating notebooks.. with children have plenty of cut out shapes and stickers and simple embellishments ready to go... and you might want to start with the notebooks already covered in a paper.

Shrinky dink, with kids artwork, made into a pendant or even cut into two and made into a pair of friendship bracelets. 

Egg shakers ... could be made with electrical tape as shown or perhaps strips of duct tape.. and could be filled with beads. Although beautiful clear, this could also be done with any color eggs and could even have 2 different colors of top and bottom mixed. And these could be decorated with stickers for extra fun.

Keep watching for MORE craft ideas for kids. 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Greatest Journey at Uganda Distribution

This video was recently posted on YouTube of a group of volunteers going on a shoebox distribution in Uganda, where they also had the opportunity to see The Greatest Journey. It also points out that not all children were able to receive supplies and attend because of funding... learn more about The Greatest Journey and consider giving so that MORE can be discipled.


RITE AID 2 FREE TOOTHBRUSHES (or moneymaker with coupon)
Oral-B Complete Manual Toothbrush, 1 ct $2.99
Buy 1, Receive $2.99 +Up Reward, Limit 2
Use $0.75/1 Oral-B Pulsar, 3D White, Pro-Health or Complete OR (2) Indicator or Cavity Defense Toothbrushes, Limit of 4 like coupons per household per day from PG 7/7 (exp 7/31)
Pay $2.24, Receive $2.99 +Up Reward
Final Price: $0.75 Moneymaker

Reach Floss, 55 yds, $0.97, regular price
Use $1.00/1 – Reach Floss Product, Any – (