Thursday, February 27, 2014

You Have Been Challenged.... Challenged to Make Bracelets for Shoeboxes!!

Blogger, Ashley, has written a post challenge to craft for the shoeboxes.... If you have ever made friendship bracelets, have a kit to do so, or a rainbow loom, you know how they can pile up. Give purpose to your crafting and share the love!

Read Ashley's blog post and get inspired!

If you make more bracelets than YOU need for your shoeboxes, we will be having a community wide packing party here in Klamath this fall... or you can give to your church if they pack shoeboxes, or one of several church packing parties! Your bracelet will be a blessing!

And if you love crafting, come to our area crafting events, or craft on your own for your boxes or for area packing parties. There are tons of ideas on the pinterest links or the crafting tab here.... but you may have your own.

Our next crafting event is April 5th from 2-4 at Calvary Chapel Klamath Falls!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Being the Hands and Feet of Jesus.. and a new resource by Focus on the Family and Operation Christmas Child

I love serving... of course with Operation Christmas Child... not not ONLY with Operation Christmas Child. I serve because Christ taught us service throughout His life unto His death, and He taught us love and mercy and kindness. I serve with my children because I want my children to understand the blessing that serving is and its value. Through the years our family has served in so many wonderful and interesting ways... and that is why I am thrilled to share with you a WONDERFUL RESOURCE to help you serve as a family, whether a couple or with children and even ideas for those of you who are single. Of course, it has TONS of ideas for Operation Christmas Child but SO MUCH MORE.

I pray that this day as you read through the kit that your heart is stirred to serving in the name of the Lord, to be His hands and feet, and that you are blessed through this service! 

Friday, February 14, 2014

Build a Box Online - Anytime is a good time to bless a child

Happy Valentine's Day!!! How about sharing the love today through a shoebox?

Yes... I know. Shoebox season is kinda over for many of us. Others are well on their way for sale shopping and crafting for next year. But did you know you can still send shoeboxes THIS year? Through Build A Box online you can make a personal box, picking items, including a photo and note and sending them NOW.

Good News. Great Joy!

You can still help share God's love with children around the world even if you don’t have time to shop for and pack an Operation Christmas Child shoebox gift. With a few clicks of your mouse or swipes on your touchscreen, you can build a shoebox online.

Make it your own by choosing from a list of gifts, then add a personal letter and photo. We'll pack your shoebox and send it for you, for a suggested donation of just $30.

And did you know that packing a shoebox online means it can go to even the most sensitive areas with the most stringent restrictions, such as the Middle East??

Its simple... its fun.. its personal.. and it is powerful!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Fill Your Shoeboxes with Loads of Love... Crafting Ideas for OCC

I love to include something homemade in my shoeboxes!! And with Valentine's Day around the corner I thought love themed crafts especially appropriate. I pray as I create the items... and I hope that the child receiving can feel the love with which the items are made. That said I am NOT crafty... so simple is important to me. There are SO many options... check the pinterest links in the right sidebar for MORE ideas... but here are a few to get you started!

This idea is one I have been doing a lot lately... take old broken crayons and make them into chunky multi-colored crayons for 2-4 year olds. Don't have broken crayons? Ask a local Sunday School, Kindergarten, or preschool for their cast offs and make a blessing for a child! (Because they can almost look like candy, you might want to include a colored piece of paper to let them know what it is for... and don't forget to put these into ziploc bags. :)

How about friendship necklaces??? These are made with homemade shrink plastic. Super fun to make... and special too. Give both halves... or keep half and send a picture of you wearing it... and send the other half in the shoebox. Then pray for the child whenever you wear it. 

Instructions at

How about traditional friendship bracelets?? There are TONS of methods and types... I adore these heart ones!! And it has step by step photo instructions too.

Packing a shoebox with kids? How about this idea, tracing their hands for the pattern? 
Heart shaped beaded wands or pencil topper?? Cute!
Nothing says love like glittery hearts.. right??? Ooooooo so sparkly.

The internet is FULL of ideas... and perhaps you have your own ideas. How fun to include something to show a child how much YOU love them... and how much they are loved by God. 


Monday, February 10, 2014

Cambodian Distribution... from the perspective of a Samaritan's Purse worker IN Cambodia

Samaritan's Purse - biosand filter installation - Cambodia

This blog was posted both on her blog and on SP website.... I was so blessed by not just THIS blog post about the distribution but by her blog as well.... so check it out, and learn about Whitney's story.. about her testimony and about Cambodia and the work Samaritan Purse does there!

Here are some excerpts from her post... this is by her husband, Andrew:

Yesterday I had the privilege of joining with the team of visitors from Oxley College, Australia, to give shoeboxes to children in a rural village church. Although I have been in Cambodia working with Samaritan's Purse {SP} for nearly 3 years now, this is the first time I have been able to to participate in an Operation Christmas Child {OCC} shoebox distribution. I love how SP makes every effort to look for ways to integrate and work with local, nationally led churches - even the least of them. 
Samaritan's Purse Operation Christmas Child Shoebox Distribution in Cambodia
The church building is so small and the only one for miles so it was 'standing room only' for some. Here the speakers give a short presentation to the villagers about the meaning of Christmas.
Only one shoebox is given to each child in their lifetime, with the goal of reaching every child around the globe.

A small box, filled with small toys, given to small children in a small church in a small village in a small country brings big smiles to kids and adults.

Samaritan's Purse Operation Christmas Child Shoebox Distribution in Cambodia

Then suddenly, at the count of three, they open their shoeboxes...and try to figure out what to do with everything they get from slinkies to teddy bears, jump ropes to schools supplies.
If you have never been able to be a part of an OCC shoebox distribution, I highly recommend adding it to your bucket list. Or maybe if you've been a supporter of OCC for many years, consider supporting the other projects we are doing in Cambodia - for the glory of God and the good of the village.

But please.. don't stop here.. go to her blog and read the whole post! And check out more of her blog to see what the Lord is doing in Cambodia and through Samaritan's Purse.

Just some info about Cambodia to put it in perspective:

 cambodia stats from unicef

  • Infants dying before reaching age 1 - 6.8%
  • Children dying before reaching age 5 - 8.8%
  • Births without a midwife or doctor - 56%
  • Average annual income in 2009 - $650
  • Population living below international poverty line of $1.25 per day - 26%
  • Life expectancy (in 2009) - 62 years
  • Estimated adult HIV prevalence - 0.5%
  • Population without improved sanitation - 71%
  • Population not using improved (clean) drinking water sources - 39%
  • Children under-five suffering from stunting - 40%

And I also had to share this from the blog about one of the water projects they work on... water, such a precious gift of life, that we so easily take for granted!

This week we had the privilege of hosting a team of students from Greenpoint College, Australia.  I always enjoy having visitors, but this week gave me a fresh look at the people we are helping through the eyes of those who have never seen it before. It also gave me some time to test out our new camera. The following pictures are from visits to a couple of the projects I manage: Water for Kids and Water for Families - BioSand Filter.

On Friday, we took them to visit the Water for Kids project at one of the primary schools where we provided clean water supply, water filters, and toilets in 2013. It's amazing seeing the difference from what the school was like last year to now. Before this year, the students typically would scoop out water from a dirty pond to drink when they were thirsty. As a result, they were often getting sick and missing school. They also had no toilets to use at the school, making the area smelly and unsanitary.

Thanks to the team and our supporters, 460 students at this school now have a toilet to use and are enjoying clean, safe water. Their health is better now they are able to attend school more often. The principal told me, "The number of students here has increased by 25% because more and more parents want their children to go to a school that will improve their health and not make them sick."

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Klamath Share the Love Crafting Event!!! Today, from 1-3

Hey! If you are in the Klamath area, stop by Calvary Chapel from 1-3, today, Feb. 8th, and join us in making crafts for the shoeboxes! All supplies are provided. All skill levels welcome. Use what you make in your shoeboxes, or donate to area packing parties.

Can't make it? Then hit pinterest because there are TONS of ideas. You can find several links in the sidebar to OCC Pinterest sites or try this amazing NEW one I just found!!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Syrian Refugees Receive their Shoeboxes! Video

Thank you to all who prayed for these shoeboxes... there were some delays in getting them there.... but God cleared the way, and we can rejoice! As you watch the video you will see the situation in Northern Iraq for these refugees, almost half of which are children! I am praising God for the work of Samaritan's Purse in His name... and the work God will do through it.

Father God, it is my prayer, that these boxes sow seeds of LOVE and HOPE and JOY for those that live in such darkness. May the transformative power of the Gospel and Your love, be partnered perfectly with the love of those who pack the shoeboxes, to overwhelm the hearts of these little ones. May the boxes be answers to prayer, tangible expressions of a loving God who cares for them individually, personally, and so very deeply.

I can't help but think, perhaps, these simple shoeboxes, which bring the Gospel and such joy to these children, are also bringing healing for the future of these nations. How can a child grow into hate for the people of the United States, when they have received love from a person there.... a letter, a photo, and gifts of love?

Enough of MY talk... enjoy the video...

Thursday, February 6, 2014

God's Gifts.... Operation Christmas Child Style

Below I have pasted some of a blog post that brought tears to my eyes and joy to my heart, and I just had to share with you!! As those of you who follow my blog know, I love to share stories about how God is working in the shoeboxes and I encourage you to pray as you pack a box.... well this post deals with this far more eloquently than I ever have. May you be blessed. And please read the whole thing at

Every year, I find myself worrying about coming up with unique Christmas shoebox ideas when I start filling my boxes. I want to be sure that the box I pack has exactly what it needs in it for the child who will receive it.

And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19 NLT)

My greatest desire is to fill a box packed with things that the child really needs and wants. And there is no reason for me to worry about it or stress over it at all, because our God is a big God! He not only makes sure that each box gets to the child He intends to receive it, but He also will guide you as you are packing the box. He will make sure you know what He wants you to put in it.

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights… (James 1:17 NIV)

 I want to encourage you to pray as you fill your box, and trust His Holy Spirit to speak to you. Maybe He will place a burden on your heart for a unique gift that He wants you to include in your shoebox. I think that’s okay, and I think you should trust Him. No matter how unorthodox it may be, trust that the Lord wants that item in the box, and trust that He will get it to the right person.

The five stories below prove that He knows what these children need, and He knows how to deliver each box to the one He intends it to receive it.

Hot Wheels. A Brazilian boy arrived at the distribution asking for a box with a Hot Wheels car in it. The volunteers explained that they didn’t know what would be in his box. They gave him a box to open, and when he did, more than half of the box was filled with Hot Wheels! 

And the post doesn't end there!!! Continue reading at her blog... and then, if you desire, go to the Impact Stories tab above and read MORE about how God is working through OCC shoeboxes!