Friday, December 5, 2014

Sara the Snowman Had a Very Jolly Soul!

Every year, EMC gets into the holiday spirit by giving to those in need. Every quarter my company sponsors a charitable activity (Charity Water in the summer, food drive in the fall, etc.) but my favorite one comes in the winter for the holidays - the Snowman Drive.

What's a Snowman Drive? Well, my friends, it's a way of bringing gifts to children in the area. Social workers provide EMC essentially with kids' wishlists and EMC employees play the role of Santa Claus. They print each child's name, age, clothing and shoe size down on a card along with some items they want for the holidays and the employees take as many as they want to shop for.

Wait - so I can shop AND do it for a great cause? Yes, please!

In my two winters with EMC I have taken two cards for each drive. Last year I shopped for a little girl and a little boy. This year, I selected two little girls - a two year old and a six year old. I tend to prefer selecting girls since I love buying feminine clothes, Barbie dolls, and all things girlie but it was fun picking out race cars and sneakers last year for the little boy I had as well.

Then comes the challenge - where can I go shopping for these little ladies? I wanted to get them AWESOME clothes that would be fashionable but would last them awhile. I also wanted to get a good deal and get more for my money. Hmm. Where oh where could I go? Does this kind of place exist in real life?

Just kidding, I didn't have to think for too long. I'd obviously go to Target!

That is exactly what I did. With these gals' wishlists in hand, I ventured into the oh-so-stinkin-adorable kids' department (am I the only one who swoons when I walk by and see the toddler-sized dresses and skirts?) and started picking out jeans, sweaters, and fun tops. I grabbed winter boots for the 6 year old chickie and soft cozy slippers for the 2 year old nugget.

Some of the adorable items I got for the toddler

One of my favorite things to do when I shop for this cause is raid the clearance rack. I simply find their size on the rack and go nuts. For the 6 year old alone I grabbed at least 4 or 5 long sleeve tees for only $2 each! How can I NOT grab as many as I could? These little girls don't have much. The least I can do is grab them as many pieces of clothing I can.

Some fun and girly items for the sassy 6-year-old!

Then I worked on toys. I knew the clothing requests were mostly from their mothers (2 year olds don't ask for slippers and clothes after all!) so I wanted to be sure to include some toys and dolls - the good stuff.

I wish I had this when I was younger!
Thanks to Amazon, I was able to snag a Barbie convertible and some other Barbie items for the 6 year old. I was also to find a cute toddler sleeping bag set (as requested!). At Target, I found some cute dolls on sale as well.

I meant to photograph my haul when I got home, I really did, but I got so excited that I immediately started wrapping everything. Only when I was finished and had everything organized and wrapped up did I realize I had forgotten to snap one picture! Oh well. Having picture proof of what I got isn't the point of it all, is it?

Little girl not included
I now look forward to this drive every year. It's such a fun and easy way I can give back. I love knowing that this year, these kids will have gifts and will (hopefully) smile and enjoy what I found for them. Knowing somewhere that these kids will wear these clothes and not only be warm in the cold weather, but absolutely adorable, makes me feel so warm and fuzzy inside.

Giving to those in need is what the holiday season is all about - and I am certainly all about the holiday season!