Today our trusty UPS man delivered another 9,000 pens for our Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes. If you follow this blog you know that buying items to fill thousands of gift-filled boxes for Operation Christmas Child involves year-round bargain hunting.
One of the staffers at my church, Grace Church, was kind enough to send me a message last week to let me know that officemax.com has the Office Max store brand of pens for only 20 cents for a pack of 12. Unfortunately, I missed the 20% off on everything on the site sale by a couple of days. I spent some time trying to find coupon codes that I could use to get the price down lower to no avail.
Still, this gets the per-pen price down below 2 cents each--not bad. These pens are not the best quality and don't write as well as I wished they did. I generally put two pens in each box, though, so I'm thinking I'll include one of these and one of higher quality.
Right now I've ordered a total of 18,000 of these and I have cartons stashed under every bed in my house. I'm a little afraid of putting them in the storage container because of the freezing temperatures.
If you're interested in buying pens for your shoeboxes at a great discount, then head over to officemax.com and check them out. Do a search for ballpoint pens and then click to sort them by price--lowest to highest--and they'll be the first that come up. They come in black, blue, or a package that has a mix of red, blue and black.
You can get a little bit more of a discount (3%) by going to eBates first, joining there, and then proceeding with your order. If you want to join eBates you can give credit to my account by clicking here.
I know these simple pens may not seem like much to you and me, but they can allow a child in another country to attend school and receive an education. My friend Lejla, who received an Operation Christmas Child shoebox in Bosnia when she was a child, tells of 56 children in her class all sharing one pencil.
A simple pen can be a mightier gift than you can imagine.