One of our ninangs sponsored a Christmas gift-giving and feeding program for 200 indigent children and hubby and I were delegated to do all the shopping and packing.
We knew it wouldn't be easy. Although we've had years of experience doing something like this when my in-laws had a similar project the number of kids, this time, were doubled.
We took advantage of the Bonifacio Day holiday and started shopping for toys at Uniwide. Hubby and I impressed ourselves by having to spend only 50% of the budget! Wohoo!
The next two Sundays were spent for grocery shopping. Now, shopping is one thing but packing everything into individual bags is entirely a different matter!
The living room, dining room and kitchen were used as "stations" for the goodies (canned goods on top of the coffee table, milk and juice products beside the altar, etc.. ).
We would repeatedly go through all the stations carrying at least 5 plastic bags and pick an item for each bag.
Things would have been easier had there been not just hubby and me doing all the packing and a conveyor belt would have been great, too!
Another issue to deal with (aside from our aching backs) was how to arrange and store everything. The completed bags had to be kept separate from the rest and they occupied part of the hallway up to our rooms.
The bags also had to be organized per gender. We intended to color-code the bags but only white ones were available in extra large so in addition, to distinguish the bags containing toys for girls, boys and also gender neutral ones, we had to tie differently colored ribbons around them.
By 8 PM we were only a little more than halfway done. Hubby and I were hungry and exhausted. So we just ordered pizza and also called for reinforcement.
We finally finished around 10PM but had to clean up and move the bags to make the house more "passable" and also to make them easier to load and transfer in the truck.
We weren't there when the toys and bags were distributed to all the kids but the photos showed how happy they were.
Their smiles made it all worth it.