Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Holiday Overboard: A Follow Up

By Maddie

I know it's a bit late but the end of my holiday season was hectic!

Rejected Mini Cooper, via Target
As I admitted before, I purchased way, way too much stuff for my 3 year old for Christmas. Amazon sucked me in. So did Target. And Toys R Us.

So I took to heart a comment from a reader, and decided it was a great idea to donate some of the things I purchased. I packed up a good size box of play food, art supplies, toy cars and several other things. My husband and I agreed that we would like to donate to a local cause, so we chose the Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida. I had to work on the day my contact requested we drop the toys off, so my husband very nicely drove it over for me. He was in total agreement that I had purchased too much, and also agreed that it was not worth the time/hassle to ship everything back. I think it made us both feel really good to give even just a few things to kids who needed them way, way more than ours.

My little boy still got way, way more than he needed for Christmas, including a rejected Powerwheels Mini Cooper that Jack is completely terrified of. However, I think I learned a valuable lesson. Next year I will both cut back on my shopping as well as plan to make a donation to the shelter from the get-go.

The other great thing that came of this is that my husband and I decided that we can afford to donate more often to the shelter. While they don't take used donations, they are always in need of inexpensive things, such as toiletries. We are going to try to make a run to Target or Walgreens once a month and pick up whatever is on sale. I want to have Jack go with us, too. While it has been overwhelming in the past for him to donate his toys (that's a story for another day!) I think he could understand giving toothbrushes and shampoo to those who are less fortunate than we are.

The whole experience was a little humbling, to be honest. While we often feel broke (and I occasionally hit my mom up for money, hi mom!), that doesn't change the fact that I am lying on a comfortable couch in my heated house, watching an entirely too large television. Many people wish to be as "broke" as we are. We are going to really work on doing more for those around us.

2 comments:

  1. Maddie, I'm so proud of you! I will let other readers know that she didn't just donate to a shelter she also helped out my kids with some presents and clothes this year. Thanks again for everything Maddie!

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  2. What a great post! I feel like we try to live simply, but last year even with jsut three gifts plus a stuffed stocking, my littles were overwhelmed & we hadn't even gotten to the grandparent's house! This year we are doing well...now if I can jsut remember what we bought! THANK YOU for sharing this story!!!!!

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