I know plenty of you guys were sick of seeing me post and tweet about it but it really is one of my favorite charities and doing the blog fundraiser is a great way to earn money to be able to donate a lot of toys for it. I do a lot of charity and volunteer work through out the year and it's always sad to see how much more is needed. At least with this particular charity, I can try to reach out to others and get some help with it so some kids who would have otherwise gone without got something to brighten their Christmas morning up.
The first year I did this, I ended up with 83 toys.
Last year was the second year I did it and I was beyond stoked when I ended up getting 105 toys.
The third year turned out even better than last year did with a grand total of 132 toys.
This year? 146 toys. Each year gets increasingly a little bit better. Here they are all laid out, as usual....
I usually lay them out on the bed but I decided after last year being so frustrating trying to make everything fit for a picture, I'd try a different place and luckily I had the house to myself to get this done without interruption.
As much work and as stressful as making this come together really is, I love doing it. And while I generally hate shopping, shopping for this is always so much fun for me despite having to keep track of everything I'm putting in the cart and the cost of it all. I didn't have a friend to help me this year but no big deal there. I try to get a good mix of toys for varying ages and get a good variety of things...
Once I got everything back off the couch and floor and into bags again, I got everything outside to my boyfriend's car. His Mazda has a far bigger trunk than my little two door Civic has so we always use his car to take the toys to the Toys for Tots warehouse. The bags took up all the space in his trunk and part of the backseat as well.
The location for the Dallas area Toys for Tots headquarters changes every year but it's thankfully always in the same general area so it's never too hard to find. Plus, they're always more than willing to give out detailed directions when you ask for them. ;) They're also super helpful in unloading the toys...
If you want to see the rest of the pictures from the shopping trip, more shots of them laid out and more from them being dropped off then you can see the full photo set here. There are a little over 30 pictures total.
I want to say thank you to those of you who donated. Whether it was $2, $10, $25, $50 or more; it doesn't matter. I appreciate it and I know the families that benefit from Toys for Tots doing what they do appreciate it, too. I have so much fun being able to do this. I've donated to Toys for Tots since I was a little kid and my mom let us each buy a couple toys of our choosing to give to them and kept doing so for as long as I can remember. So blame her for getting me started into this one. ;) Doing it on such a large scale the last few years has been so awesome. I couldn't do it without all of your help so thank you. I also want to say thank you to everyone who posted on their blogs, tweeted links and otherwise
Now we're done for this year and y'all don't have to hear me go on and annoy the online world with this anymore. Until next year anyway. ;)