Or at least part of it anyway. When I get a purpose on my heart, I tend to go all out in support. I do it for Relay for Life, which is another story, and right now, I’m doing it for Toys for Tots.
The Jeep group that I not too long ago joined, is a group of folks who go out of their way to support local business and charities. No longer working, I have to pick and choose how I can help. It would do me no good to put myself in a financial bind, trying to help others.
My son has participated in the motorcycle toy runs for several years. I always envied him a little getting to take part in such a worthwhile cause. I did take part in a small way, I bought the toys he added to the trailers when he got there, but that isn’t the same as being a part of that mass collection of human kindness rolling down the highway.
This Jeep group, on a designated day, will form a parade of jeeps all decorated for the occasion, and go to all the locations where donation boxes have been placed. The toys will be collected and Jeeps will be filled with those toys, to take to the main drop off point.
Me, being the stubborn, somewhat driven person I am, has taken it as a challenge. While I know that it is a group event, my contacts are limited. Even as I join in the conversations and share in the quest, I tend to fly solo as I almost always have. I saw the plans, I heard the requests for toys and I took it personally. I wanted to fill up my Jeep. I didn’t know of anywhere that a donation box could be staged. So mine is a mobile donation vehicle.
Again, as I said with me no longer working (thanks Covid), I don’t have a lot of money to personally spend. That is where my unsuspecting – well maybe by now they suspect- friends come into the picture. Those following my facebook page and twitter account, have already seen the posts asking, actually close to begging for donations of toys. If they don’t want to shop for a toy, I’ll even take cash and send them photos of the toys I purchase with the money.
My goal, is to fill up the back of my Jeep with toys. I want to make sure that I have toys for all age groups. I was given a monetary donation the other day and I made a point to get as big of a variety of games and toys as possible. I had some money left from the initial donation and was given a few more dollars last night. If I saw the ad correctly, there is a good sale coming up soon. I hope to make the most of the money I currently have and any more I may can talk folks into donating.
Why though, do I do it? Its for the kids. Those kids are innocent of what is happening around them that may cause their family to be in a bind. All they want, is to be kids. To have a few toys and be able to play like other kids they know. Kids that are in that position, aren’t all that picky. To have a new toy that is their own, is the best Christmas gift ever. That toy truck, the dolls, the games, a big, purple, stuffed unicorn. It doesn’t matter that much to them. Its simply the fact they got something, and its theirs and theirs alone.
My son has told me, and one year I was at a stop and saw for myself the joy and excitement on the faces of the kids as they walked away with their new toys. Their smiles so broad it took up their entire face, their eyes lit up bright enough to challenge the sun. The smiles of relief on the parent or guardian who was with them. Over the course of years, we gave our son some rather expensive gifts. I remember his excitement over some of them, but his excitement never reached the levels that these kids who have so little reach over the simplest of toys. That, is why I do what I do.