The 30 Days of Gifting guides have been so fun to create for you guys, but giving is also a huge part of this season for me that I want to share with you all.
Miller will definitely grow up knowing what it means to give. We have friends who have their kids give away one of their own Christmas toys each year to kids in need the day after Christmas every year. It teaches them that the toys are just ‘things’ and it shows them how amazing it feels to give. We want to do something very similar with Miller.
We also want to make sure we take her with us when we volunteer. Sometimes time means even more than monetary items when it comes to charity work.
Instead of doing a gift guide today, I want to share how you can give back to the community. Even if you can just do ONE of these, it would mean so much!
How to Give Back This Holiday Season
1. Packages for your UPS, FedEx, USPS, Amazon drivers.
Here are some packages we put together for our drivers this year. When putting your own packages together, please note that USPS cannot except anything over $20 (for the entire package) since they are run by the government. Our drivers work so hard over the holiday season. They usually have to work overtime, they work on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Years, etc. They don’t get to spend much time with their family, they are freezing, they are exhausted, etc. Putting together a care package is so easy to do- even if it’s just a cup of hot coffee and some homemade cookies!
In our packages for UPS, FedEx and Amazon, I included an insulated lunch box, a Visa Gift Card, an armband for their phones, a stainless steel straw, a pack of turtle Chex mix, and some candy! I am also going to throw in some hand warmers and a thank you card. In the thank you card I will mention that they can exchange the armband and lunch box for something else at Target if they already have some! In the UPS bag, I included a Cabelas tumbler for his water or coffee (he delivers the most packages!) I will be giving USPS a $20 Shell gift card (gas station gift card!)
2. Angel Tree.
Angel trees are another easy thing for people to take part in. Just google angel tree to find one in your area. Most are sponsored by the Salvation Army, but there are all types! Did you know that SO MANY FAMILIES on the angel tree are foster families? They have helped my sister and her family SO MUCH. She actually gets to write down what her kids need each Christmas and it is such a blessing for her to get jackets and mittens and things like that.
We will be doing a Closet Sale (date coming soon) and during the sale we will be providing EVERYTHING you need to wrap your Angel Tree presents, free of charge. This will include wrapping paper, scissors, bows, tape, etc! Hopefully, this encourages you guys to grab an angel from the tree and come have a wrapping party with us! CLICK HERE to see where a tree is closest to you in the DFW area (for other areas, google Salvation Army Angel Tree near me.)
3. Help the homeless.
I lose sleep at night when it starts getting cold thinking about the homeless. It is devastating how many we lose each year during this season. Please call your local homeless shelter and see what they need. Sometimes it is simply underwear and socks that they are in need of, and sometimes they are in desperate need of blankets and jackets. You can also ask about volunteering options at your local shelters. I used to work at the Bridge serving breakfast. I would pour water or I would be behind the line plating the items. It is only an hour or so of your time a couple of times a week!
4. Clothing and Toy drives.
Simply google clothing, can, and toy drives in your area and help contribute to those! It is crazy how much food you have in your pantry that could help someone so much that you will probably never use or that you forgot you have!
5. Call your local church.
Call your local church and ask them if they have any foster families (or any families at all) in need of gifts or clothes this Christmas. My sister said this is one of the best ways you can help foster families in your area. Yes, they receive monthly income but that usually only covers necessities. Kids grow, break things, etc and those things need to be replaced. Also, some families can all of a sudden take in a new child and have nothing at all for them in terms of clothing and the monthly stipend can take a while to come in. I know all too well about these struggles. Foster families in your area would benefit so much from your help and they would be so grateful!
6. Volunteer at an animal shelter.
Do you love pets? Dogs at animal shelters, unfortunately, do not walk themselves. They need volunteers to do so. During these colder months, volunteers are harder to come by. If you have time in your schedule and you can help walk these dogs or play with the other animals I know the shelters would greatly appreciate it! And so will the pups!
There are so many more ways you can give back this holiday season. If you are a part of a philanthropic organization and can give us some more ideas, PLEASE comment below! I hope you guys are all #milleraffected by this post and can at least do ONE of the above! Can you imagine what we could do if everyone reading this could something on this list? It would be incredible!