Sometimes, while there's a lot to blog about, blogging takes a back seat to slogging through. I've been doing a bit of slogging lately.
Last Wednesday we received another shipment of 53 cartons of hats and visors for next year's Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes. I take the deals when I can find them and this seemed like a good one.
I was grateful the shipment came on a clear day. At first I was a bit intimidated by the pallets stacked five cartons high, but I found I could maneuver even the top ones and get them down "all by myself" with the pride of a toddler who has mastered climbing on a kitchen chair.
Blessedly, my sidekick, Pam, was there to lend her sorting and packing expertise. We opened all the cartons, took the hats out of their inner boxes, and consolidated them--tallying them as we went. The job proved to be too much for one day, though, so we muscled all the boxes into our storage container and tabled the rest of the job until Friday.
Thursday was another busy OCC day. My husband and I met with the pastor of a local church called Elevate to try to recruit them to pack OCC boxes. Then we came home, regrouped, and headed out for Bradford, PA--a nice just-under-two-hour drive on a crisp fall day.
We met with the Johnsons who are relay center coordinators there and then traveled on to Hill Memorial Church where we had a great time presenting OCC to the kids at their after-school Kids' Club. The kids listened to the OCC video with rapt attention and then we played a game where volunteers took turns reaching into a bag to try to identify shoebox items by touch alone. Then each of them decorated a shoebox to take home and fill.
Here is one of my favorites--
After the kids went home we had a pizza supper with adults and then did an OCC presentation for them. We were home by 11:00 on Thursday night, and Friday morning Pam and I were back at the container to work on those cartons of hats again. We managed to finish the job amid mountains of cardboard. With a full dumpster, we had to store the piles of cardboard in the container until Sunday when my sweet husband helped me load it into our van.
Thankfully, the "garbage fairies" that come to our house in the middle of the night on Sunday night made it all disappear.
I forgot to mention we traveled another hour and a half on Friday afternoon to Knox, PA for a fun OCC packing party hosted by my regional director, Leigh Fisher. We had a great time. My husband cartonized and I folded boxes. What joy to watch them go beyond the goal of 1,200 to a total of 1,298 packed boxes. While there I missed a call from another trucking company.
I returned the call today and scheduled another delivery for tomorrow. We're praying for warm and dry weather so we can unload a perfect SEVEN pallets of tote bags. Six of them are on open gaylords and will need to be counted and put into boxes for storage.
Counting is important. Our count revealed we were significantly shorted on the shipment of hats and visors and the seller is investigating to see what happened.
Meanwhile, I'd better get to sleep, because we'll be back under the pile tomorrow.