Christmas, a time for family, togetherness, gifts, mulled wine and mistletoe.
Parties, large dinners, chocolate and far too much pudding
I love this wonderful time of year and like many I’ve been guilty of taking the big C for granted.
You, see it’s not just Christmas for me and my family and it’s not just Christmas for you and yours, it’s Christmas all over the world, touching many a person’s heart, bringing smiles to billions.
I feel guilty when I stress about my Christmas list and how I still have to buy this, that and… Oh god that something else for uncle so and so! I have to step back and remember the point of Christmas, forcing myself to relax.
This year I’ve had Christmas on the mind since July what with Santa’s Little helpers and the building of the wish list, how could I not!
However there has been no stressing (well, not yet) I haven’t yet brought much but one or two of the children’s gifts, however there is one very special gift I’ve already prepared, “The gift of a shoe box”
That’s right… a shoe box! However it contains no shoes, (well, only a plastic pair) odd you may think? Instead it contains something so much better, It contains Christmas for a child I’ve never met and not likely I ever will!
This is me seeing the bigger picture, remembering what Christmas should resemble… The knowledge of knowing you’ve raised a smile for a child who without your shoe box wouldn’t have experienced the joy of receiving a gift on Christmas morning.
As part of the Samaritans Purse appeal ‘Operation Christmas Child’ I prepared a shoe box that was happily supplied by the lovely friendly staff at my local ‘Shoe Zone’ store. I filled it with treasures for a Little girl somewhere in the world who would have not otherwise felt the joy of receiving a gift this Christmas.
Before packing my shoe box with girlie delights, I wrapped the lid and the box in pretty pink Disney Princess Christmas gift wrap, and lined the inside with sparkly metallic tissue paper. I then placed the following things inside the box
One small doll and accessories
One floral headband
One pair of dress up princess shoes
One Disney princess necklace and clip on earrings
One small girlie mini note pad
One drawing pad
One packet of hair grips
4 mini bags of sweets
One small packet of colouring pencils
Before finally placing the lid back on and tying the box shut with some pretty ribbon (Only loosely as this needs to be checked by the volunteers).
I made sure I picked up an information leaflet from Shoe Zone that gave me all the required information, list of things I wasn’t allowed to give and some examples of the things I could! The leaflet also contained the necessary labels that highlight if your gift is for a boy or a girl and the age range the contents are aimed at. The label is then stuck to the lid of the box.
You must include a donation of £2.50 to cover the cost of sending your box to its designation. You can give this by check or cash placing it in a small envelope and placing it inside your box, but better still you can donate online which makes it easier for the volunteers who have to hand check every single box before sending it on. What’s more, if you do make your donation on-line you can track your box and find out just where it went, isn’t that awesome?
I first heard about the appeal on a popular forum used by many “mummy bloggers” and since reading it, its been wonderful watching the Mummy bloggers come out in force and doing what they do best, raising awareness for worthy charities, just like this one!
The lovely mummy mummy mum has spread the word and encouraged others to fill a shoe box by running a competition (you enter by linking your picture of your filled shoe box).
Michelle twin mum has also raised the roof on this one and has all the parents at her children’s school on the job! Her post is fantastic and it includes some awesome pictures of her beautiful children filling shoe boxes.
It’s not to late to raise a smile by filling a shoe box, you have just a few more days to get a shoe box, fill it with New treasures and get it to your nearest Shoe Zone or Stead and Simpson store (check on their website for other drop offs) by the 18th November.
If you really don’t have the time to shop, wrap and drop off, then why not select a pre-filled shoebox from as little as £11 on their website
It’s so simple, yet so rewarding, I promise, you’re feel great doing it!
So, have I inspired you? I hope so… every shoe box is another child’s smile…
ON CHRISTMAS MORNING!