Friday, December 18, 2009

Giving Back

I'm going to try and do this without is sounding like a public service announcement. We'll see...

It is exactly a week until Christmas. A week! By now, everyone is buzzing about buying gifts, wrapping gifts, decorating trees, baking cookies, going to parties... its a busy time of year. I am no exception. This year, however, I've made time to do something different.

I'm volunteering Sunday. Normally, I try to do something around the holidays. Yes, I know I should do things year round, but the holidays tug at my heartstrings a little harder. Although stoic and sarcastic at most times, I'm really a mushball on the inside and get teary at the slightest nod to sentimental or touching things. Makes me crazy, especially around this time of year when every commericial is out to sell you something or make you cry, or both.

Normally my contribution involves me writing a check to the local Food Bank to feed people holiday meals. Maybe getting presents for Toys for Tots or cleaning out the pantry for donations. I've been known to adopt a family or an angel or a soldier. This year, in addition to my normal activities, I'm doing something new that requires only my time. It actually involves a semi-dangerous task I wouldn't normally attempt.

Dangerous, you say? Yes. I'm wrapping gifts at the mall on Sunday. The money we raise goes to support the Crisis Services of Northern Alabama. They provide safe shelter for domestic abuse victims, crisis hotlines and other services such as rape counseling. They have volunteers wrapping gifts at both local malls all month, so if you get a chance, stop by and let them wrap some of your gifts for a good cause. And as for the danger I mentioned, I have to tell you that it goes against my sense of self preservation to get anywhere near a mall within a few days of Christmas, but I am. For charity.

What are you doing to give back this holiday season? Share the wonderful ways you share the spirit of the season and one commenter will pick up a copy of An Affair Before Christmas by Eloisa James!

SP

16 comments:

Playground Monitor said...

I am just absolutely ashamed to say I've done nothing. I haven't adopted an angel or bought a bike for the radio DJ up on the cherry picker (I love doing that one because every kid needs a bike) or volunteered anywhere.

I AM going to see my mom next week and help take care of her. She's getting out of the hospital today (I hope) after being there almost two weeks. She already told me I need to help her get her Christmas cards done and wrap her gifts.

It's been a weird Christmas for me this year.

Maven Linda said...

I help everyone, by staying out of their way at the mall.

My favorite Christmas charities are the Salvation Army, and the local gifts for needy children that the fire department collects. And staying away from the mall. Honest. It's a boon to mankind that I stay away from the mall.

Problem Child said...

We brought presents for local foster kids and did a couple of other things, but poor AC doesn't understand that we simply can't do *everything.*

However, I won't be wrapping presents at the mall, because no one wants to see how bad my packages look...

Lynn Raye Harris said...

Aw, SP, you *are* a mushball -- which is why we love you. :) I think wrapping gifts is both brave and admirable. This year, we're donating to the food bank. In the past, we've done the Angel Tree, Toys for Tots, and a couple of other things I can't remember. But they all involved donations of money or things, not time. And you are right, time is a precious commodity to give.

Which mall, btw? I may need things wrapped! :)

Smarty Pants said...

I'll be at Parkway Place mall, upstairs by Dilliards. At least, that's what they've told me.

Sherry Werth said...

That is so sweet SP. And 'mushball' is a good thing. :)
I'm sorry to say I haven't done anything this Christmas to give back. Not that I haven't wanted to, just nothing has come up to remind me. I regularly donate things to the mission here in town and I contribute every chance I get to our local animal shelter.

I'll probably be one of those people buzzing around at the mall, so maybe I'll see you there. :)

Instigator said...

Um...I'm with PM. Sadly, I've done very little this year. We usually adopt an angel from the tree but this year I just haven't gotten there yet. You know what, you've inspired me. I'll be out later today and will pick one up (and the present to go with it).

Instigator

catslady said...

My husband and I volunteer at our local American Legion. We gave a party for over 100 kids - morning and afternoon sessions since we can't them all at once. My daughter dressed up as an elf. We have a nice gift for every child (you should see us shopping for over 100 gifts lol) and home made cookies and other snacks and of course they get to sit on Santa's knee. It's a crazy time but the kids are so thrilled!!!

Virginia said...

I am sorry to say I haven't done much this year myself. I always donate to Gods Pantry and to the Salvation army! I do help everyone by staying away from the Malls, I hate Malls! I do try to be helpful to people in town. I let them in front of me in checkout lines and such and put up carts for the elderly, but this isn't much and I feel guilty!

Anonymous said...

we have an 'adopt a family' campaign at work...we collect money/gifts from co-workers, shop, wrap, and present this christmas package to our family.

karenk
kmkuka(at)yahoo(dot)com

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

No need to enter me, ladies. I'm just dropping in to say thanks for the e-mail. I've got this posted at Win a Book for you.

Christine said...

We always do an Angel tree. We used to do a child my DD's age and go shopping with her for the child, Toys for Tots, and Food Bank. But when we moved here, we started adopting senior citizens and we've had so much fun buying for our "adopted" grandparents. This year we had an 85 yr. old man who wanted a track suit, colorful shirts and a stuffed animal. Fun!

In addition we do the food bank. I really like that my local PUBLIX does a food bank bag for the needy at the grocery store through the holidays. But I wish they'd do it all year long! It's easy to just put a bag of extra groceries in the cart and give. Why not do it all year long?

Merry Christmas!!

Tamsyn said...

I'm afraid I didn't do anything this year. In Japan, while many celebrate Christmas, it is not a national holiday. My only contribution is looking after my mother-in-law who has been living alone since her husband passed away a few years back.
tamsyn5@yahoo.com

Anonymous said...

we participate in our local xmas charity drive, they go around the neighbourhood with a tractor trailor and collect door to door donations of food & clothes,thx for contest
thehighflyer3(at)hotmail(dot)com

BUSY BEE said...

As a family we have adopted a family that needs some extra attention. It doesn't always mean money...we have shoveled the driveway. Provided meals. Wrapped presents. It has been great for the kids to help someone else.

bsyb100 at gmail dot com

Kaye said...

The only thing we've done this year is volunteer to be bell ringers for the Salvation Army and donated to Toys for Tots.

florida982002[at]yahoo.com