Monday, December 12, 2011

Advent Giving Quest - Week 2 report & Week 3 plan

I know it's already Tuesday and I'm finally getting this posted, but I want to stay up to date with our happenings. Please excuse the poor quality of some of the photos in this post. Somehow I was only able to take pictures with my phone during some of our givings, but I still wanted to document it.

Last week, we had a great week of giving!! Last Thursday, my children had the day off because it was a Holy Day, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of Mary. So, we took the opportunity to begin our day with giving. We first visited one of the Fire Houses close to my mom's house & brought them 2 dozen donuts. One of the firemen noticed my kid's jackets with their school's logo & said he goes to the church.
Then, we went to another Fire House and brought them 2 dozen donuts also.
They were very welcoming and offered to have us take a picture in front of the firetruck.
Then, one of the firemen let the kids get in the truck.
He let them try on the helmet and look at some of the gear.The kids all enjoyed it!Then, we went to a nursing home to bring a few gifts to their residents.
The kids did an amazing job going up to the people and giving them gifts.After all of our giving, we were able to meet lots of our friends at church and decorate cookies together, color Christmas sheets, watch a Christmas movie, and sing Christmas carols together - such an awesome full day!!

This past Saturday, I took my oldest two and one of Abigail's friends for more giving. We first went to the Dollar Store and picked out some mylar balloons.
We loaded up into the car with all 9 balloons & headed to the mall!Each of the kids had 3 balloons tied on their wrists & I held a basket with candy canes, m&ms, and Christmas books. The balloons sure did catch the attention of people as we were walking through the mall. The kids were on the lookout for young children who might not be enjoying their shopping experience :-) All 3 of them had a great time giving them away!! Thinking back on it, they didn't ask once to keep one of the balloons, pretty precious.
When we made it down to the children's play area, I held the 5 balloons we had left and each of them took a Christmas book into the play area to give away. Abigail's friend had no reservation & walked right up to a parent sitting on a bench & asked if her child would like the book. Thankfully she said yes! I happened to be standing behind her and her friends & it was so neat watching them open the book and read the card about Random Acts of Christmas Kindness inside. Here's a picture of them walking away after giving it to them:You can barely see the 2 girls scoping out who they would give the other book to - As we were walking through the mall and looking through a few stores, the kids were able to give away some of the Christmas books, candy canes & m&ms to some of the people working in Gap, Victoria's Secret Dillard's. They also gave them to some a few people sitting on the benches throughout the mall.

This past week, we were also able to give the candy canes & m&ms to various people we came in contact with. The best story so far happened Tuesday evening after the kid's Christmas play at school. We went through the drive through at our local coffee shop to get hot chocolate to drink while we drove around looking at Christmas lights. I had Abigail come up and give the person who made our coffee a Candy Cane with the story attached to it. He was so appreciative & said it was the best tip he had ever gotten & as we drove away I heard him telling his fellow employees how excited he was with what he had been given. So fun!!

Here's our plan for Week 3 of our Advent Giving Quest:
Thursday after school, we will stop by the Laundrymat that's on our way home & bless people with the cards with $1.50 in quarters inside.
Friday after school, we will go shopping for the 3 people we will be buying Christmas gifts for from the Angel Tree at church.
We also need to get more candy canes & M&Ms and attach the Christmas story to each to give away. They work great for giving away to anyone we come in contact with!

As the opportunities arise, we also plan on:
Grocery Store - buy a gift card and hand it to the person checking out behind me.
Grocery Store - buy a package of gum & give it to the checkout clerk
Grocery Store - buy a coffee or hot chocolate & give it to the Salvation Army bell ringer when leaving the store
Restaurants - hand out coupons that I have or small gift cards before leaving restaurant
Restaurants - Leave a small gift for waiter/waitress
Drive-Thru Restaurant - pay for person behind me in line

As I read on a friend's Facebook page this morning, "A little *spark* of kindness can put a COLOSSAL BURST of sunshine into someone's day!"

Have a wonderful week of Giving!!

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