12.17.2015

Blessing Bags

One of my favorite Christmas traditions is heading to San Francisco during December.
I just love the city during Christmastime. Growing up, my parents would take us to San Francisco to see all the decorations & now I love continuing that tradition with my kids.

San Francisco has a huge homeless population, so whenever we go to the city we see a lot of homeless people on the streets. It's heartbreaking. I have never been comfortable giving them cash, I usually give them food or a gift card. For the past 5 or 6 years, we have taken "Blessing Bags" with us to the city.

 What is a blessing bag?
It's a ziplock bag filled with items/food that you give to a homeless person. 
What's in a blessing bag?
That is up to you! Here are the items that I put in our blessing bags: 
-New pair of socks
-Peanut Butter crackers (or you could do cheese/crackers)
-Granola Bar
-Beef Jerky/Cheese Stick
- Package of Almonds
-Mini Water Bottle
-Juice Box
-Chap Stick
-Toothbrush/Toothpaste
-Travel Size Deodorant
-Cough Drops/throat lasenges
-Pack of gum
-Travel size Wipes
- $5 Gift Card to McDonalds (so they can get a meal and/or hot coffee)

***Other items you can add****
-Applesauce/Fruit Cups
-Hand Santizer
-New Mittens/New Beanie
-Bar of Soap
-Travel Size Shampoo
-Hand Warmers
 
 Put all of these items in a Gallon Size Ziplock Bag.
 I like to make 10 bags at a time to bring with us to the city. 
Here are all the supplies:
 Kevin usually keeps 1 or 2 of these in his car, so that if he sees a homeless person on the corner, etc. He can give them a Blessing Bag.

 My girls love to assemble these. We talk about how fortunate we are & that some people don't have homes & so this is something small we can do for them to help them out.
Kate told me this year that we shouldn't give them a McDonalds gift card because they don't serve good food and that we should give them In-n-Out instead. I explained that there are a lot of McDonalds in the city & no In-n-Outs and they don't have a car to drive to In-n-Out. 
I like to include a $5 McDonalds gift card because then they can at least get a meal and a hot cup of coffee.
 The girls also wanted to make Christmas Cards/drawings to add to the Blessing Bags this year. I thought it was a great idea.
 All of the items fit perfectly into a Gallon Size Ziplock.
I love the cards the girls made :)
 Our Blessing Bags all filled up!
We are headed to the city later this afternoon to pass out the bags & to go ice skating. 

These are just suggestions for what to put in a Blessing bag. 
You can make them smaller & put them in sandwich size ziplock bags, it's totally up to you!

It's a simple way to bless a homeless person. 99% of the time they are extremely grateful.  
Now, go bless someone who needs a Blessing Bag!

6 comments:

  1. This really moved me.... I've been trying to think of ways to implement giving during the Christmas season, and in a way that my 3 year old will understand. I think this is just wonderful, and something the kids can help with and understand too. And it starts a very important conversation with your kids about the homeless community and how to care for others. God bless you and your family for doing this.

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  2. I love your blog and how often you try to help people and teach your children to help others as well. :)

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  3. What an awesome act of service to do, especially with kids! I'm totally going to give it a try with my boys.

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  4. Love this! Our kids made these in their Sunday school classes last week and we can't wait to hand them out.

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