Sunday, December 8, 2013

Spreading holiday cheer!!!

Everyone who knows me knows how much I love to make things from my photography. Over the past years I have definitely been a bit over zealous when it came to making any of my new creations. While hundreds of items have found new homes through sales at local shows, on my own website & through my awesome shop on Zibbet, I have still found myself with way too many left at home.

Sales dropped significantly over the past couple years. So all my creations sat. I don’t have a brick & mortar store front either so lately the only way to see what I offer, is to be online.

I have felt for some time now that having this inventory in my home has held me back. I have had so many fun & great ideas of things to create. Yet they are seldom making it past either the idea phase or the sample phase. How can I even think of creating more when I still have all this here? And so the idea to share my work was born … in a coffee shop with a friend who was so helpful.

There are so many things any of us can get involved in these days. So many people to help or support. I chose seniors. Those who are spending their golden years in assisted living centers or small ‘family homes’ type of places. I chose 5 in my local area to go to, finding them from recommendations of other locals on Facebook.

I made the rounds on Friday to see if I could even do what I wanted. My idea was to wrap an open box in holiday paper & fill it with unwrapped gifts. I would provide a note to explain to the residents why this box was here & how it worked. I would provide enough in each box for each resident to take up to 2 things. For Free. Just because. They would be able to keep them for themselves, or give them as a gift to someone for the holidays. My offer was met with confusion at first. I wanted to do what? But why? Once I explained everything, staff were more open & even excited. I wonder if they doubted whether or not I would return the next day as promised. I was able to set up all 5 deliveries for Saturday afternoon, which was so much fun!

My wonderful husband helped me out with deliveries & photos. He often thinks I’m crazy for the things I want pictures of, but he always indulges me.

Now that I had a better feeling for just how much I would be able to share, I got to work making the lists of what went into each box. Sitting on the living room floor with tons of bookmarks, note cards, prints & coasters around me I began to make sense of it all. I jotted down every single item in each box. The amount of fun I was having, even under a deadline to leave the house by 2, was enormous!

Each place I delivered to was so happy & thankful for my gifts & generosity. They smiled & so did I! I asked hubby to take a picture of me in front of each place with my box. He laughed, but he did it. The only one we missed was the last place but only because it was a family home & trying to fit anything in a photo was kind of hard.

My total retail value of gifts for all 5 places came to over $1800.

Total seniors reached? About 180.

I now have a full heart & a few empty containers. I'm ready to face the new year making my ideas come to life again!
Cherry Lane Country Haven

Hearthstone Cottage

Highgate Senior Living

Blossom Valley Assisted Living

5 comments:

Kitty Ballistic said...

What a fantastic way to end the year - sharing your creativity with people to bring happiness to them, and making space in your life to allow new ideas to emerge. :-)

Raige Creations said...

Wonderful! A full heart is so much better than a house full of STUFF. I love it.

Enchanted Craft said...

Just think of all the joy you gave to others! Those 180 seniors now know that someone loves them too during a season where too many are forgotten by others. You filled hearts and souls with joy- not just your own.

Unexpected Treasure said...

Nicole, what a wonderful way to end the year! I'm sure your generosity has put a smile on all 180 faces! May God richly bless you for your kind deed.

kitkat9 said...

Nicole! Your idea is brilliant. It is kind and loving and will mean so much to those you have gifted. You will be blessed, in turn, I believe. Merry Christmas to you and your husband.
Love, Cathy Clark