Archive for the ‘Giving’ Category

Reverse Trick-or-Treating

October 31, 2007

Today I went with a few moms and our kids to a local nursing home to visit with the people who live there. We thought it would be nice for them to see the kids all dressed up in their Halloween costumes. Boy, did I underestimate the welcome we would receive.

We planned on handing out some goodie bags to them, kind of like a reverse trick-or-treat. We did not anticipate the kids trick-or-treating around the facility; the employees hadn’t planned for it either — but it’s exactly what we ended up doing. An employee pulled out a big bag of candy (I suspect to be used at the resident Halloween party they had planned for later in the day) — before I knew it, they had distributed the candy to residents so that they could hand our kids the candy.

Up and down the halls we went. There weren’t even that many of us; 4 moms and 6 kids, but it seemed like an army. I could feel the warmth and see the welcome in their smiles. We even made some residents smile, that apparently “never smile.” That’s the power of a toddler for you. It’s the power of giving. Today we gave time.

We were repeatedly thanked by so many people there, but we are the ones to be thankful — for the experience of putting smiles on so many faces today.


Give a Christmas Gift to a Child In Need

October 16, 2007

Editors note: I recently moved my blog to a new server. You can find this same post (and all my others) at the new location:, where I post daily. Operation Christmas Child

I believe all children deserve a present at Christmastime so this year I’m going to participate in Operation Christmas Child. Children from around the world are given a shoe box with gifts you’ve purchased for either a boy or a girl.

Former President Bill Clinton mentions Operation Christmas Child in his new book, Giving: How Each of Us Can Change the World. He says that he likes the program because people of all ages and income levels can participate.

A few years after the first shoe boxes were delivered, Clinton went to Bosnia and saw first hand “the happiness and gratitude sparked by these small boxes.”

Clinton also says:

“Countless gift-givers of modest means have made a real difference in the lives of children who otherwise might have been forgotten. Though Samaritan’s Purse is a Christian group, it offers a proven model of caring for children that members of any synagogue, mosque, or temple might want to emulate.”

This is how Samaritan’s Purse summarizes the project (from the Web site):

“Operation Christmas Child brings joy and hope to children in desperate situations around the world through gift-filled shoe boxes and the Good News of God’s love. This program of Samaritan’s Purse provides an opportunity for people of all ages to be involved in a simple, hands—on missions project while focusing on the true meaning of Christmas—Jesus Christ.”

It’s a great way to involve your entire family. Each member can do his/her own shoebox. Each kid can do one for a child like himself and fill it with toys he’d love to receive.

Find a drop off location near you.


Photo courtesy of Samaritan’s Purse.