Giving Tuesday

Did you know that today, Tuesday December 1st is #GivingTuesday?
What is #GivingTuesday?
From the #GivingTuesday Website:
We have a day for giving thanks. We have two for getting deals. Black Friday & Cyber Monday. Now, we have #GivingTuesday, a global day dedicated to giving back. On Tuesday, December 1st, 2014, charities, families, businesses, community centers, and students around the world will come together for one common purpose: to celebrate generosity and to give.
It’s a simple idea. Just find a way for your family, your community, your company or your organization to come together to give something more. Then tell everyone you can about how you are giving. Join us and be a part of a global celebration of a new tradition of generosity.

I love the idea of Giving Tuesday. It was started 4 years ago.
I think it is awesome and a great way to enter the Christmas Season.
One way I like to enter the Christmas Season is that every year on the first day of Advent, I watch a video from Advent Conspiracy as a way to prepare my heart for the Christmas Season.

I encourage you to watch it {turn the volume on for full impact}

 When I first watched an Advent Conspiracy video 8 years ago, it struck a cord and made me re-think Christmas.
Do I think gifts & Christmas gifts are bad? No.
Do I like to shop? Yes.
 But, I have changed the way I view gift giving.
The amount of money Americans spend on Christmas makes me sick to my stomach.

In years past, we used to exchange gifts with all my nieces & nephews.
It was ridiculous buying & exchanging gifts with all 9 kids.
My kids don't need that many presents & neither do their cousins.
So,  a few years ago, we changed how we did Christmas. Each kid would pull a name & get a gift for 1 cousin. Much more reasonable than getting gifts for 9 cousins.

Several years ago, my sisters & I decided to stop giving each other gifts.
We don't need anymore "Stuff"
Now we do something fun together.
For the past few years we have gotten tickets to see a musical or Broadway show with my mom and having a girls day in San Francisco.
Spending time together is much more fun than getting a random sweater or purse.
 This year we also adopted a family.

I also tell my sisters to NOT give my girls Christmas presents.
Instead, I told them to take my girls on dates so they could have one on one time with them for a few hours.
Spending time with their Aunties is much better than a random toy.

I encourage you to watch the video & see how you can turn your Christmas upside down.

And, in honor of #GivingTuesday, I have a list of organizations that we support and things we have done to give back:

Charity:Water - a non-profit organization bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing nations. 100% of public donations fund water projects. Charity:Water is the organization we used for Project 320 in 2009 & 2010 & we were able to fund 3 wells in Africa. Kevin's high school small group funded a well in the Spring through Charity:Water during our church's Kingdom Assignment Outreach. 
Heifer Project (donate an animal to give a family a source of food for a year. A few years ago, one of my students donated a goat in my name.Best Christmas present from a student. EVER.

Team World Vision:  Last week I blogged about my Running Journey and that on December 12th I am running another 1/2 marathon, but this time I am running for a cause. I am running for Team World Vision. My goal is to raise $100 per mile I run....my goal is $1,310.

If you would like to donate, it is 100% tax deductible. 
Any amount helps....$5, $10, $25, $50, $100!
Thank you for your support!

Compassion International - This is another awesome organization. You can sponsor a kid for $38 a month to give them food, shelter, education, health care and the opportunity to learn about Jesus in a neighborhood church program.
Kevin and I have sponsored Compassion children since before we were married. We currently sponsor 3 Compassion kids, 2 girls and a boy. The girls have the same birthdays as my girls and the boy has the same birthday as Luke. If you search the Compassion website you can pick your own child to sponsor & search by birthdate. My kids love that their Compassion kids have the same birthday as them :)
 Other ideas you can do for Giving Tuesday or this Holiday Season:
Every year we go to San Francisco during December to check out the Christmas decoration & go to my sister's work party at the Embarcaderro Ice Skating Rink. If you have been to SF before, you know there is a big homeless population. So, when we go, I bring "Blessing Bags"
You can put whatever you want in your Blessing Bags.
I fill them with a $5 gift card to McDonalds, a granola bar, peanut butter crackers, fig newtons & a juice box & a new pair of socks. (You can also put in gloves/bottled water, hand sanitizer, etc)
 A little thing for us to do & a big difference to those who receive it.

Adopt a Family, Feed the homeless, Make a Blessing Bag
 Angel Tree, Operation Christmas Child,
 Donate cans to a Food Bank.

Do Something this Giving Tuesday & this Christmas Season.

It's not about the gifts. It's about the birth of Christ.
It's about loving others.

Make this CHRISTmas meaningful.

Spend Less and Give More this Christmas Season. 
Happy Giving Tuesday!


  1. I just shared that video. This has been something I have been thinking so much about this year! We don't need more stuff. I love to shop but if shopping for someone feels hard or stressful, you might have to rethink that gift!

  2. Wonderful ideas. I'm in bed so I can't watch the video but my sentiments are the same about all the gift giving!

  3. The compassion project has an "experience exhibition" going on in Greenville, SC right now. I want to take my kids!

  4. This is so great and refreshing to see on a blog today. We also like to look for ways to give back during the holidays. Thank you for being a wonderful example in the "blogosphere"! :)



Blog Widget by LinkWithin