Well, this is going to be a crazy week! Two days until I climb in a car with Shannon and Stacey from Operation Christmas Child (you know, the Shoebox people?) and head out to Nashville for the Blissdom Conference! I’m sure they would appreciate your prayers, as they will have to spend a total of 12 hours in the car with me. Talk about scary!
We’ll be doing something cool at Blissdom this year. We are bringing a couple of OCC Shoeboxes to create a Blogger Shoebox gift! We will be taking pictures of everyone who brings an item, and tracking the box as it travels to a needy child. It may just be the only gift they receive all year.
When I came up with this idea, I was thinking about the swag that we get at these conferences. While I am SO thankful to receive promotional products, sometimes I give away the items I don’t need. When I pass these items on, I also pass on the brand awareness of the company that sponsored them. SO- if anyone donates swag items they won’t use, I’ll give the company a shout out on my blog to share their brand with readers.
I will be carrying around a tote bag at the conference sessions, and if you have an item (or a few) to donate, simply drop it in my bag, and let me get your picture!! Here are some suggestions of things you can bring. Just take a minute at the gas station, grocery store, airport, or your own closet to grab one or two items before you leave
small cars, balls, dolls, stuffed animals, kazoos, harmonicas, yo-yos, jump ropes, small Etch A Sketch®, toys that light up or make noise (with extra batteries), Slinky®, etc.
pens, pencils and sharpener, crayons or markers, stamps and ink pad sets, writing pads or paper, solar calculators, coloring and picture books, etc.
toothbrush, toothpaste, mild bar soap (in a plastic bag), comb, washcloth, etc.
Hard candy and lollipops (please double bag all candy), mints, gum, T-shirts, socks, ball caps; sunglasses, hair clips, toy jewelry, watches, flashlights (with extra batteries)
A PERSONAL NOTE
In a separate envelope, you may enclose a note to the child and a photo of yourself or your family. (If you include your name and address, the child may write back.)
DO NOT INCLUDE:
Used or damaged items; war-related items such as toy guns, knives or military figures; chocolate or food; out-of-date candy; liquids or lotions; medications or vitamins; breakable items such as snowglobes or glass containers; aerosol cans
OCC says that the Boy 11-14 age is the scarcest group, so I’d like to aim for that age. However, whatever you bring will be fine!
And while we’re talking shoeboxes, Blissdom and Soles4Souls will be conducting a shoe drive for Haiti at the conference, so bring some new or gently worn shoes to donate at the Sole4Soles booth at the conference.
So I guess my blogging tip this week is to find a way to use your social media influence to GIVE! Give, not to receive accolades, or traffic, or comments to your blog- but just for the sake of giving!
Now, link up your favorite post from the last week, so we can read and promote them! I’ve been tweeting with the hashtag #yourblog when I promote your posts on Twitter, and you can do the same if you want! We all like when people tweet our posts, so pick a good one from the linky and go for it!
Please link back to this post, so others can link up!