Okay, my friends, I have seriously, seriously lost my motivation to unpack this apartment. Seriously. (Now I feel a bit like Meridith Grey, but... seriously!)
You writers out there will appreciate the power of a deadline, and I had one. Note the past tense. You see, a friend of mine, cajoled/convinced/tricked me into hosting a cookie baking get together last weekend. It was a crazy idea, but it was also a deadline. My goal was clear, unpack the kitchen, find all the cookie baking supplies and wash them before the bakers arrived. As an added bonus, I challenged myself to find the sofa, and the dining room table so we would have places to put the cookies, and places to sit.
It was a crazy deadline, but I succeeded. When the bakers (only two) arrived on Saturday, the predesignated parts of the apartment were ready for them. And I have to say, I'm very proud of how well my cute little kitchen handled three women, and how nicely my cute little oven baked so many cookies.
But, there went my deadline. Poof. Up in smoke (though fortunately nothing else went up in smoke that day). Now, I have no fixed goal other than "unpack the apartment" which is kind of like the fixed goal "write a novel" it's too big to handle.
Now, I know what I have to do, set small manageable goals, accomplish a little at a time, not think about the big picture or how much I have left to do. I know this, but I'm having trouble making myself do it.
It doesn't help that every few days we discover something that didn't fare well through the months in storage. The most annoying discoveries of late are our DVD recorder and our printer both of which kinda work, but don't really work anymore. We're fortunate in that (so far) nothing of great sentimental value has turned up broken, but still, a writer needs a printer! (I said the same thing about our bookshelves... a little Gorilla Glue seems to have fixed those... think I can glue the printer? No?)
But none of that is really important. Not in the grand scheme of things. What is important is that Toys for Tots needs our help. I read in the paper that more than twice the usual number of kids are signed up for Toys for Tots this year. So many that despite cutting kids off at age 12 (they used to cut them off at age 16) the organization is doubtful that it will be able to provide gifts for all the kids who need them. How tragic!
I've always had a soft spot in my heart for Toys for Tots. When my brother and I were young, our mom used to take us shopping for gifts for Toys for Tots. We'd each get a set amount of money and could allocate it any way we wanted. My brother always got something big and cool with lights and moving parts. His goal was to give one kid an AMAZING Christmas. I was more conservative, buying smaller gifts trying to give many kids a good Christmas. At the end of the shopping trip we'd put our bags in the Toys for Tots bin and imagine kids like us getting something special when they least expected it.
Fast forward to today, and the demand is so high that some kids will get nothing on Christmas morning. Ugh.
But, it's not too late to donate. If you have a spare dollar or two to donate to kids on Christmas, you can do so on the Toys for Tots website here. You can also check the website for drop off locations. Most of them have taken in their barrels at this point, but some are still collecting. I donated online, but I might just have to hunt down one of those remaining barrels too.
If toys aren't your penchant, there are a myriad of other ways in which you can help. You can donate blankets, or books, or food, or even blood. Regardless of what you donate, you'll be making someone's holiday a little better.
What are you favorite charities around Christmas, and the rest of the year?