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!