Memorial Day weekend only (thru Sunday), you can grab flip flops for just $1 (limit 5 per customer). This deal is good in stores only. There is also a 20% savings pass on their website. Print it out and bring it with. I’m not sure if they’ll honor it on the flip flops (have not in the past), but it is worth at try!
Recently a blog post from a lady in Senegal has been widely circulated amongst the Operation Christmas Child community. It had some valid points, but it also bummed a lot of people out. She had a lengthy list of things that she would suggest not packing, even though most of those same items were recommended as “do pack” items by the Operation Christmas Child organization. I just wanted to debunk her ideas a little bit and reassure you that all the treasures you pack are enjoyed by children around the world! No one person’s experience is universal, especially with a limited number of kids (looked like her distribution was about 15 kids). Shoeboxes are sent far and wide and kids and cultures all over the world are so different. You just can’t pack your shoeboxes based on one person’s narrow perspective.
However, you can continue to pack your shoeboxes with JOY and use prayer as your guide when picking out your items! Leave the rest in the hands of God. He’s got it covered, trust me. And, remember, the Greatest Gift of All is that shoebox recipients will be taught about Jesus (no matter the contents of the shoebox).
Unless otherwise noted, all photos are from Samaritan’s Purse.
Stuffed Animals are Loved and Appreciated! This is OCC’s March Item of the Month!
Hats and Gloves are Used Around the World (even in Africa!!) This is also OCC’s January item of the month.
Dolls Are Adored, the skin tone doesn’t need to be a perfect match
Clothing Items are Wonderful, even if the child can’t read the words on the shirt or recognize the characters. (OCC’s July item of the month)
Toy cars are fun, even in dirt…and remember, many kids receiving boxes live in hospitals and orphanages as well, not dirt huts.
I couldn’t find any pictures of children playing with games. Most of the pictures are taken right at the distribution and the children are too excited exploring all their gifts to take a quiet moment to play a game or figure it out. However, games are Operation Christmas Child’s item of the month in September. And since they are the ones distributing all these gifts, I’m sure they know what the kids like.
Please keep on packing as you feel led. Please don’t let one person’s point of view rob another child of the joy they experience when receiving a stuffed animal, a shirt, a toy car, etc etc.
Some of our favorite items to include in shoeboxes have just had a price drop on Amazon. The combs ship free for everyone. The nail clippers ship free with Prime or with a $35 order. (thanks, Lisa & Candice)
Head on over to schoola to claim your free credits. It’s a great time to use them while they are offering free shipping as well! Schoola sells new and gently used children’s clothing.
New members will get a $15 credit when they sign up through this link. New and current members can get a $10 credit by creating their own Custom Collection!
Free shipping is just for a limited time, so I wouldn’t delay in using your credits. Sort by “new with tags” to find new clothing items to use in your Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes!
Head over to Walgreens photo and order your free 8×10 print with code FREE2PRINT. Offer is good through May 9.
If you’re wanting to use this for Operation Christmas Child, you can create a collage of smaller pictures using PicMonkey and then upload it to the Walgreens site.
Linda shared some excellent directions with me on how to make jump ropes from T-shirts! I think this is just a terrific idea; I love the colors and simplicity of this project. Linda says that she just asks friends for t-shirts that may be rips or stains or look worn out. Then, she washes and dries the shirts before making them into jump ropes. What a great way to re-purpose T shirts and make a free or inexpensive item for your Operation Christmas Child shoebox. Linda also prints out a clip art photo of a girl jumping rope and attaches it to her T shirt jump rope so a child opening up a shoebox will know what to do with it!
Want to try this yourself? Here is how to make your very own T-shirt jump rope:
Materials: Old, large, colorful cotton T-shirts (the larger the T-shirts, the fewer you need) and scissors
- Lay the T-shirt stretched out on a flat surface.
- Cut 1.5 inch strips horizontally across the body of the shirt, starting from the bottom. You will get long, stretchy loops.
- Once the strip is cut, run your hand along the entirety of the strip, stretching and rolling it into a tight loop.
- Continue cutting and stretching 1.5 inch strips until you reach the armpit. Optional: You can cut shorter strips from the sleeves, if desired!
- Tie three strips of similar length together in one big knot (this will be your handle!).
- Braid the loops together until you near the end of the strips and then attach new strips. We suggest looping them through each other to avoid tying knots.
- Continue braiding and extending until your jump rope is at the desired length.
- Once your jump rope is at an appropriate length for your height, tie the three strips together to make a final large knot (your second handle!).
- These jump ropes are easily altered to be longer or shorter. Try making a really long jump rope to jump with a friend.
This is a great craft to do with large groups of kids as well as at home; scout groups and youth groups can work together to collect T-shirts to repurpose. The more T-shirts the group collects, the more varied and colorful the jump ropes.
Check out this other tutorial on jump ropes as well: