It started out with a cooler name, ok, maybe not cooler, but more descriptive.

Back in October I received a Samaratin’s Purse catalog with all the potentail gifts you could buy/donate towards for families or missionaries in need.  It got me thinking and I came up with an idea of how we could help model the truth that “its better to give than to receive” with our kids.  So one afternoon I cut out a few pictures from the catalog and glued them onto a piece of paper.  I then took an old butter container and duct taped the lid one and put a slit in the middle for a way for us to “stash” away pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters in an effort to help someone else.  Once the kids got up from their nap, I sat them down (yes, John Boy is only 1, but he will get the idea eventually) and explained about how some people don’t have much for Christmas and we could be generous with our money so we could “buy” them a gift on the computer through the money we would save.   Belle was so excited.  We took out her penny jar and the girl put about half of her coins in the make shift penny jar!  I let Johnny pick through our little change jar in our room and he got to put money in as well.  Thanks to the envelope/cash method (we only use this for part of our budget) we constantly have change from purchases.  So every time I would get a few coins I would say “Hey guys! Look!  More $$ for our project” (hence the name 🙂  The kids loved racing upstairs to put in the change each time after we got home.  At one point, Belle went on to explain to my mom about “our project” in her own words and thanks to a little help from Mimi, we got a few more coins towards our total.

Yesterday we went to the bank and cashed in all in.  I figured since we had some gifts wrapped under the tree it would make more sense to them about purchasing a gift for someone in need.  We somehow managed to save $25.00 over two months!  So exciting!  We got out the green piece of paper last night and told Belle that we had worked hard to save and be able to save up $25!  We could choose Honey Bees (and still need $5) or we could gift 2 mostquito net covers at $10 each or for $14 we could get someone 12 baby chicks for their home/farm.  Both to help feed their family and sell at the market.  Belle choose the baby chicks, so we ended up almost being able to pay for 24 baby chicks for a family!  I think I’m more excited than she is. 🙂

Anyway, I realize there are a ton of ways to give throughout the year especially at Christmas.  But what I liked about this particular idea was that it was an ongoing thing for a few months (not just purchasing something and dropping it off) but a constant saving/talking about helping people who are in need/ God loving all people.  Also the part that we didn’t “budget” for this $25 gift!  Now, for us, $25 is still a chunk of change (haha!) so being able to be generous with our giving AND  involve the kids AND show God’s love AND make sure that we are modeling the “better to give than to receive” truth… well, it was worth every penny. 🙂

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