A friend gave me the book Operation Christmas Child: A Story of Simple Gifts, and y’all, it’s wonderful. It’s amazing to read the history of this ministry and have a glimpse into the personal stories of some of the recipients. I have dogeared the entire book because it’s just that good. My favorite quote is by seventy-three year old Doris Goodair who said “I stayed so busy with shoeboxes, I didn’t realize I was growing old.” I wanna be Doris when I grow up.
Here is a peek into the boxes we’re packing for 10 – 14 year old girls this year:
School Supplies: Composition book (college ruled for the older kiddos), colored pencils, pencils, pencils sharpener, scissors and erasers. In the interest of not shipping air, we stuff the pencil sharpener full of pencil-top erasers. Don’t you think a colorful or glittered pencil would make school work just *a little* more fun?
Personal Care Items: Included are a washcloth, soap, toothbrush and cover, Chap-stick, nail care set, hair elastics and shower comb. We sometimes use the hair elastics to secure rolled clothing items; it’s more useful to the recipient than sending a rubber band.
If you’ve wondered why we send a toothbrush but no toothpaste, this makes it easier to get the boxes through customs and because the kids were eating the toothpaste. I read of one boy who downed an entire tube of bubblegum favored toothpaste in one sitting! Yum. Yum.
Something to wear: Hat, socks, fun leopard print tights, tee shirt, panties, and soft cup bras. My sister had several fabric bags from new pillowcases, so we tucked the underthings in those. Because opening underwear in front of your friends is still not a fun party game.
Since we don’t know the girl’s sizes, we send 14-16 size clothing for this age group. I figure it’s better to send things she can grow into, rather than smaller clothes.
Fun Stuff: Paint brushes, watercolors, art paper, zippered wallet, travel sewing kit, beaded bracelet, water bottle and tiny trinkets.
I rolled the washcloth and socks and stuffed them into the water bottle. The Chap-stick, googly-eyes ring and tiny, new friends were jammed into the crevices.
We removed the foam packaging sheets from inside the wallet, and tucked these small items into the pockets.
Here’s how it all fits into the box:
Happy shoe box packing!
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