Monday, November 30, 2009

Time for a shopping trip

Work Friend and I are going shopping. We do this every year at about this time. See, we are in charge of (and by "in charge" I mean the only people in the building remotely willing to do) the Christmas for Kids program for our school. We go and buy gifts for children whose families are struggling.

This is more of a time-sucking commitment than either one of us bargained for. It pretty much takes up a huge portion of life from the end of October until the middle of December. There are letters to write and envelopes to stuff (and address and lick and stamp) - asking for donations or if assistance is needed. There are letters to open and coordinate and sort - boys or girls, who wants what. There are presents to buy -a few very loooooong nights at Wal-Mart (they either love us or hate us, but I'm not sure which). There are presents to sort and wrap - early mornings and late nights. There are thank-you cards to write - for all who contribute or help. There are families (ours) that are neglected while we do all of this.

In eight years, we've received three thank you notes.

A lot of the kids we buy gifts for come to school every day in their Abercrombie sweatshirts, with their ipod in one hand and their iphone in the other.

There are parents who return the gifts we provide and use the money to buy cigarettes and vodka (or worse).

There are parents who call and complain that they didn't get enough presents.

And every year we wonder, at some point, why we do this at all.


There are kids who will come back from the holiday break with a new warm coat.

Or new boots.

Or a new sweatshirt or jeans.

Kids who will sleep wrapped up in a warm blanket.

Kids who would not get Christmas presents any other way.

And we know we will keep doing this every year for as long as it is necessary.


Baby Mama said...

that is so beautiful and wonderful. what a sacrifice of love! you may not get earthly recognition for your good deeds, but God sees each and every one :)

Lyndsay said...

Good for you to keep with it. Three thank yous - seriously?! That sucks.

For the past couple of years, instead of doing a gift exchange at work, we've "adopted" a cause or a family to provide for. This year we picked our charity and sent a nice letter asking for specific requests or most urgent needs and never even got a response. Kinda takes some of the fun/warm fuzzy feeling feeling out of it.

Next year I'm going to suggest the Ronald McDonald House. I volunteer there and find the families very appreciative of the help. Well, most of them... there are always a few in the crowd, y'know?

Bacardi Mama said...

I'm so proud of you for doing this. Some of these kids would have no Christmas if it wasn't for you two. And I love you too!

Anonymous said...

you rock girlfriend!! i'm so proud you are my bff :)

InTheFastLane said...

Some things are so worth it, even if it is just for a few.