Saturday, November 14, 2009

Operation Christmas Child

I've been cranky today, but for no good reason, really. This morning the kids had their karate promotions, and the whole event was long--it lasted for nearly three hours. Trinity had already taken her belt test yesterday, so she was just there strictly for the promotion. But the Little Ninjas didn't actually take their test until today, so we had to show up an hour before the actual promotions so Elijah could test. The test for Little Ninjas is a full hour long, which is no small feat for five and six year olds. Elijah did well, but by the end he was stumbling...you could just tell he was tired. Luckily he still passed. One thing that was kind of cool was that they were short on judges, so I got to judge. They assigned me two Little Ninjas who I had to evaluate, which was funny because I don't know a damn thing about karate. But I felt like my assigned boys were very sharp and did a great job, so I gave them both good scores. After the Little Ninjas completed their test, the promotions commenced and Elijah received his leadership stripe and Trin got her orange belt in karate. She was thrilled. She has had this nervous energy since yesterday, wondering if she passed her test, so when she was awarded her orange belt, I felt happy and relieved for her.

After the promotion ceremony, we went out to run errands, and it was just a long, grueling day. Among other things, we had to shop for Moo's birthday and for our "Operation Christmas Child" boxes. Operation Christmas Child is an awesome organization that sends Christmas gifts to children in impoverished nations that would otherwise not have a Christmas. You choose a gender and an age group (i.e. female, age 5-9), and then you take a standard-sized shoe box and fill it with gifts for your child. Here's a link to a great video segment regarding Operation Christmas Child: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZZA7bQJ_7xI. It portrays a woman from Bosnia who once received one of these boxes when she was a child, and how it impacted her life. I'm not going to lie, the video clip does have a Christian-driven agenda, but all religion aside, I think Lejla just has a powerful story. Clint and I do two boxes every year, one for a boy Elijah's age, and one for a girl Trinity's age. This year our little girl is getting art supplies, a doll, mittens, a cute new toothbrush with toothpaste, a candy cane full of "runts" (gotta cancel out that toothpaste somehow) and a new purse. Our boy is also getting the runt-filled candy cane, toothbrush/toothpaste, and mittens, but is also getting stickers, two small coloring books, a beenie, and a car. I so badly wanted to get our girl a diary, but couldn't find one anywhere.

My dream is to one day be one of the people to actually deliver the boxes. Well that, and to publish a novel. Someday. Over the rainbow.