On the 6th Day of Christmas…

The holiday season is a time for giving. We give time as well as gifts to family, friends, and others in our lives. But, it is also important to give to those we don’t know and celebrate the real meaning of the season. All ages can contribute their time by giving back to their community. It doesn’t have to be a huge amount of time, even the smallest project can make an impact. Need some ideas for giving back? Read below. 

• Visit a nursing home: This can be done as a family or with a group. Make cards and decorations beforehand and take them with you to give to the residents. Also, bring some holiday cheer by singing a few carols while there. Be sure to call ahead and schedule your visit. 
• Volunteer at a homeless shelter: When I was in elementary school, my Girl Scout troop volunteered at the Salvation Army shelter during December. We helped serve dinner, talked with the residents, and then sang Christmas carols. In addition, we brought bags filled with snacks, toiletries, and gloves and socks to pass out. Looking back this was one of my favorite memories of giving back during the holidays. Take some time and visit your local homeless shelter. Help with a meal or make bags to hand out.Personalize these care kits to the different types of shelters. For example, add more products for women if you are taking them to a woman’s shelter and don’t forget to include something for the kids. Want to make it resemble the holidays more? Fill a stocking with granola bars, water bottles, a toothbrush, and toothpaste, socks and gloves.
• Donate to a food bank: During the holiday season, this act of kindness is one of the most common, but yet is still in great demand, especially after the holidays. Take your kids to the grocery store and let them pick out the nonperishable goods to donate to your local food bank or ministry with a food pantry. Also, pick up some toiletries to include with your donation
• Send Christmas cards to deployed soldiers or to your local veterans hospitalThis simple act goes a long way. Be creative and create homemade Christmas cards for soldiers overseas and fore veterans at the veterans hospital. These cards will help them remember that people are thinking about them and their sacrifices for our country during the holidays. You can also prepare a care package to send with the cards. There are several organizations that help soldiersreceive the packages, such as Support Our Troops and Holiday Mail for Heroes. 
• Cook and bake: Cooking a meal or baking cookies is a great gesture to say thank-you to the various people in our lives. Prepare a casserole to freeze or a crockpot meal for your neighbors in need or take a meal to the employees at the police department, fire station, or EMS workers. Don’t want to do a meal? Bake cookies and sweets to give to neighbors, teachers, librarians, post office works, your mailman, and many more. 
• Deliver hot chocolate to the Salvation Army bell ringers: It can be cold standing outside stores, ringing the bells for a good cause. But you can make things warmer by bringing them hot chocolate. Make a batch and fill a thermos with the chocolate drink. Then, take cups and deliver the snack to the volunteers at various stores. In addition, bake some holiday cookies to take with you. 
• Clean out the toy box and closet: If there is a toy your child hasn’t played with in a while or a coat you haven’t worn in years, donate it to a local shelter or toy and coat drive. Someone will appreciate being able to give their child a gift this season or have something warm to wear when the weather gets cooler. Also, gather items for an angel on the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree or the holiday stocking drives. 

 

Whatever way you choose to give back, know you are making a difference in a person’s life. Yes, the holidays are a busy time, but there is always time to remember the reason for the season. 

xoxo,

Megan

Advertisements

Give to January’s Charity of the Month

This year, I’m celebrating giving back to others in our local and national communities. Every month, I’ll be profiling a different nonprofit and the many ways YOU can help. Imagine how much we can change the world in 2018!

January – St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

Unified-St.-Judes-hospital

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital treats children with cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Founder Danny Thomas opened the hospital on February 4th, 1962. Since then, it has been a pioneer in groundbreaking research that has helped raise the rate of survival for children with cancer to 80%. St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital provides comfort to children and their families during a stressful time in their lives. To donate, click on the logo above. To find out other ways to help, visit: Ways to Give 

Let’s change the world together!

xoxo,

Megan

My Christmas Wish

merry-christmas-in-cursive-best-25-merry-christmas-calligraphy-ideas-on-pinterest-merrymerry-christmas-in-cursive-the-birth-of-jesus-santa-claus

Yesterday, I went to go pick-up a medicine for my grandmother. This medicine happened to be at the pharmacy in the local hospital’s cancer center. As I walked through the doors, a sense of empathy overcame me. I remember walking these floors before when I took my grandmother to chemotherapy or attended a doctor’s appointment with my mom. However, this time it was different. No one in my family has cancer, but I understood the battle everyone in that building was facing.

While I waited for the medicine, a couple came in to speak with the pharmacist. The husband had just been diagnosed with cancer and was being informed about his treatment. While I listened to the conversation, I kept thinking “why would God let this happen to someone right before Christmas and how can I help?”

The question “how can I change the world” has laid heavily on my heart this past week. There are so many causes I care about: veterans, mental health, cancer patients and families, children, pets, and homelessness. How can I help them all? My answer: complete a random act of kindness every day and God will do the rest.

I talk about spreading kindness and giving to others a lot; however, it is so important to do in today’s world. My Christmas wish is that by next Christmas, the world will be a better place and that everyone will be on their way to making a difference.

Merry Christmas!

xoxo,

Megan

 

Be a Friend and Stop Bullying!

IMG_4962
You may have seen the video, circulating online, of Keaton Jones. Keaton is a brave young man. In the video, he talks about being bullied, wonders why people do that and says “to stay strong, it gets better, I guess.” Keaton’s mom posted the video online and since then, it has gained the attention of people and celebrities nationwide.

Bullying is an epidemic that many children and adults are facing. It is heartbreaking and needs to be stopped. One way is by showing kindness. Let’s teach our children to be kind and compliment each other. There is no excuse for bullying. No one should be disrespected for their looks and lifestyle. God made them special and He has a reason for everything. Keaton’s reason is to show the world that bullying needs to be eliminated. There is so much hate in our world today. Let’s challenge ourselves to stand up to bullies. You never know how much random act of kindness can impact a person.

Keaton – I can’t tell you how much of an inspiration you are. You brought attention to the issue of bullying. We, as a nation, need to celebrate our differences. Know you are changing the world. You have motivated numerous people and have tackled a tough issue. Thank you for being so strong! You’re handsome and smart. Your bullies are just jealous, because they can’t be as awesome as you!

xoxo,

Megan

Helping the California Wildfire Victims

865522414.1508164526

I’m in North Carolina and as I sit writing this post, snow is melting outside. Snow? In the south? On December 10th? Yes, a majority of the south was covered with blankets of the white fluff over the weekend. However, the western part of the nation is fighting something a little hotter than snow.

Southern California is currently battling six fires, spanning over 175,000 and 212,000 residents have evacuated from their homes. In addition, almost 8,500 firefighters have been working around the clock, trying to put out the blazes. Every day, more and more people are leaving their homes; animals and nature are becoming innocent victims.

If you are like me, you can’t imagine leaving your home at Christmas and not knowing when you might be able to come back. The holiday season is a season of giving. Below are some ways for you to help the victims of the California wildfires. I encourage you to donate whatever you can.

Give back to those affected by the California wildfires this holiday season!

xoxo,

Megan

 

Always Choose Kindness

635828702721931608982613286_Randon-Acts-of-Kidness

Today is World Kindness Day – a day meant to promote the random acts of kindness people do for others. But, why does this have to happen for only one day? Shouldn’t World Kindness Day be celebrated 365 days a year?

I’m currently reading the book Wonder (if you haven’t read the book, I highly recommend it!). In the book, the main character’s English teacher gives his students’ precepts. His first one is “when faced with the choice between being right or being kind, choose kind.” How cool is that? Always choose the option to be kind no matter what. A helping hand is one of the best things you can give a fellow human being.

I challenge each of you to live out World Kindness Day all year long and complete random acts of kindness whenever you feel like it. Need some ideas to get start? Take a look below:

  • Leave money on a vending machine for someone or unused coupons on store shelves
  • Volunteer at your favorite nonprofit
  • Pay for someone’s meal, groceries, tickets, etc.
  • Run an errand for an older neighbor
  • Reconnect with old friends
  • Send coloring books to sick children in the hospital
  • Write cards to senior citizens in a nursing home
  • Plant a tree at the local park
  • Insert coins into someone’s expired parking meter
  • Find opportunities to give compliments

These are just some of the many kindness ideas. Let’s spread the challenge and make the world a kinder place! Share your random act of kindness with me on Twitter using the hashtag #365actsofkindness.

Wonder where we’ll be on November 13, 2018?

“Carry out a random act of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you.” – Princess Diana 

xoxo,

Megan