Little Boxes of Cheer

Box of Good Cheer

February is arguably the dreariest month of the year. Between the freezing winds, icy roads and drab landscape, it feels like winter is never going to end!

My kids and I have found a small way to help brighten up these last few weeks cooped indoors, so today I thought I’d pass the idea along to you – along with  a fun little giveaway so you can play along too.

The inspiration first began when I received a gift package from Bramble Berry a couple of weeks ago. They are one of my favorite soap supply companies, so I often mention them here, on my site. As a thank you for doing so, they sent me a delightful box of goodies along with a few recipes to try out.

Box of Goodies from Bramble Berry

The delivery arrived on a grayish kind of afternoon, just as an icy mix started falling outside. My kids and I had so much fun digging through the box, exclaiming over every thing we found – it felt almost like Christmas!

As I sat back and watched their animated and smiling faces, I vocalized the thought: “I wish I could bottle up some of this happy feeling and share it with those who need a dose!”

So, after brainstorming a bit, we came up with the idea to use the materials from Bramble Berry to make up as many small gifts as we could, then mail them out anonymously to people who might be sad, lonely, or blue this time of year.

I solicited the names of some shut-ins from my Facebook friends and we set to work making our little boxes of cheer. The kids helped make the items, drew little pictures for some, and helped me carry them all into the post office.

It was such a fun experience, that we want to keep doing it. Because of the cost of postage and materials, we can only send a few here and there, but we’d love to get more names for our project.

If you can think of someone that might be going through a hard time right now, could you leave a comment below, with their first name or maybe even something more vague like: “my neighbor” or “my sister” – nothing personally identifiable.

Also, I know it’s human nature to dwell on your own problems before anyone else, but I’d like to ask that you don’t request one for yourself. This is a kind of think-of-others type deal. :)

I’ll go through and randomly pick two at a time and email you to request their address. This will be a slowwwwww process and I may never get to everyone, but we’ll see how it goes!

One last thing: You know that person that you are thinking of, that might like a little box of cheer? They would also love a phone call, visit, card or surprise gift from you as well!

Have a nice day!


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37 Responses to Little Boxes of Cheer

  1. beautiful post! My brother is the care giver for my mom who now has dementia-they live in Indiana so I can’t help him out much-a surprise for him might give him a little cheer.
    I love this idea very much of sharing-can I have your permission to do the same on my blog?

  2. Debbie says:

    What a great idea! I know a few people who I can present with a little ray of sunshine myself! Just think how much happiness we can spread if we all just send something to one person!

  3. No one to suggest but I love this idea. Since I make some of my own products I can do this myself with folks I can think of. Thanks for the inspiration.

  4. Beth says:

    What a splendid project! It probably gives you as much cheer to give as it does for your recipients. It would also be wonderful if a little cheer might be sent to my in-laws – my mother-in-law’s started chemo and they both could use all the cheer they can get.

    • Jan says:

      Oh yes, the happy feelings go both ways! :)
      I’m sorry to hear of the difficult time your family is going through and hope the treatments for your mother-in-law go well.

  5. Tasha says:

    I love your idea and thoughtfulness–even to strangers.

    Something I have done in the past is send a tea bag in a homemade tea bag envelope. It is inexpensive, but it lets someone know you are thinking of them. There are lot’s of free printable tea envelope sites out there with cute pictures, thoughtful sayings, etc.

    • Jan says:

      Thank you for sharing Tasha! I just did a quick google search for printable tea envelopes and wow! I had no idea such a cute idea existed. I love it!

  6. Leigh Ann says:

    I have a friend who lost all 3 of her sisters withing 4 months in 2012, her twin sister to suicide. She is fighting her way through this enormous loss and the grief. She is also working hard to get her self healthy, physically and emotionally.

  7. Gwinny Brewton says:

    What a kind idea! I have a very dear friend who was a nurse in the ER with me for many years. She suffered stroke that left her partially blind and with physical problems. Though she continued to try to work but was kindly told she was no longer competent due to her residual stroke problems. She was devastated not to be able to take care of others as a nurse. As a caring lady who sees her Christian mission in life to be encouraging and caring for others in their need, she found away to continue to encourage by sending cards of love to people who need it. She has trouble writing lengthy notes because of her eyesight, but still expresses her love in a personal note in each card. My husband and I save the unmarked greeting cards we get in the mail to send her. We send this dear lady a couple of boxes of cards each year. She sends these in turn to people that she knows or hears of that need encouragement, paying for the postage out of her disability income. She feels this is all she is able to do for others in light of her physical limitations, yet she is compelled to continue to help and encourage others as long as she is able. How wonderful for this dedicated unselfish lady to receive a wonderful personal gift for herself (since she has spent her life on others). If you are able to include her it would be wonderful as she is truly deserving. Thank you so much for your kindness to others. God Bless you!

    • Jan says:

      Hi Gwinny! Your friend sounds like such a sweet lady! I had to take her address off (to retain her privacy), but will email you for it again, when her turn comes up! :)

  8. Erika says:

    What a lovely idea! I tried incorporate it to my facebook but none of my friends wanted to join. Sometimes it feels like I´m a black sheep here trying to change the world :P
    I think that my mum would need a bit of cheer. It´s not that she´s sad, but she has a lot going and a fibromyalgia that gets worse every time she stresses. I got MS about 6-7 months ago and she has been with me to every appointment since, which I really appreciate but sometimes it gets to stressful for her I think.

    • Jan says:

      That is so sweet to think of your mom! She sounds like a special lady. I know what you mean about that feeling of being a lone wolf sometimes… but there are lots of us kindred spirits out here in internet land. :)

  9. Susan says:

    I have a friend who has been having a rough time. She lost her father in law the day after Christmas and just found out her own father will be entering hospice. On top of all that her husband is under the threat of a layoff in the next few months. She is such a giving and thoughtful person, active in her church and always willing to help out. I would love for her to be a recipient!

    • Jan says:

      I’m so sorry that your friend has been having such a difficult winter – she sounds like such a lovely lady! You’re a great friend to think of her!

  10. RedSetter says:

    What an absolutely lovely thing to do. If you are able to send outside of the US I would like to nominate a wonderful friend in Scotland who is under a great stress of being a carer for her elderly parents, one of whom is very confused and verbal with alzheimers, and she also has her own health challenges. She has also been helping me during my current illness as well and I’d love her to receive a little surprise kindness.

  11. ClaireEllenSmith says:

    My partner and I recently decided to go our separate ways in life. We love each other dearly. He taught me so much and he is such a special person. Although I am happy now I truly miss asking him how he is everyday. He has had to face some difficult challenges in his life and very rarely opens up about it. I would love for this ‘Little Box of Cheer’ to arrive at his door so that he knows that there is always somebody thinking about him and wishing him happiness. :)

    This is a beautiful idea. x

  12. ElizabethF says:

    Your project is awesome! I knit to keep me busy as I’m on chemo and spend a lot of time indoors. I send my little projects to folks anonymously. It’s fun to see an elderly lady at church with my scarf on!
    My daughter is going thru a rough time. She lives in the frozen north with her hubby and 3 children. She’s a caretaker at a residential home and has been recently diagnosed with fibromyalgia. She never slows down and gives 110% to everyone else. Some cheer would be lovely :) thank you!

    • Jan says:

      I love the lady-with-the-scarf at church – how fun! :) And, your project sounds wonderful! This is a hard time of year to be living in the frozen north while dealing with a high stress job and fibromyalgia. Your daughter could definitely use some cheer!

  13. Kimberly says:

    My mother in law.

  14. M. says:

    Oh, Janine could use some extra special loving at this time. She and her dear family are facing what seems to be insurmountable odds. A box of cheer would be most welcome. Thank you and God bless.

  15. Katie Sank says:

    For my Grandma. She is going through chemo and this also is her first winter without my Grandpa to help her with the chores. She’s doing alright but the winters in IL are never easy.

  16. Rose says:

    How about YOU Jan…what do you need??? XOXOXO

  17. robin leclerc says:

    one of our radio stations is doing a theme next week called “i choose joy”…inspired by a repeat cancer pt….they want listeners to do random acts of kindness as part of the theme…i like your sharing idea…its more my style….thanks for the inspiration..the timing was perfect so it must be a meant to be thing..:)

  18. Dear Jan, never cease to amaze me :)
    I have fortunately no one to suggest, but what a lovely kind gesture <3
    Steps to follow for sure :)

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