Sunday, December 9, 2012


Everyone who knows me, and knows how I feel about Operation Holiday Stockings is aware that I pursue this project on faith.  I pray for the troops, for their families, and for all of the volunteers of Operation Holiday Stockings.  I pray for all of the wonderful volunteers who are making stockings for us, those who are out collecting goodies for the stockings, and for the folks who help with our postage expenses.  All of this is done on faith, faith in other people, and faith that we all will be given the means to continue with Operation Holiday Stockings. 

Look at the picture above.  Look at the faces of the soldiers as they are picking out a stocking that we sent for their party.  That is why we do this each year.  That is why we will continue to do this.  These men and women are away from their families during the holidays and the least we can do is bring a little bit of cheer in the form of a stocking.  These stockings aren't full of everything they will need, they are full of love and support, and of course prayers for their safety.  The real gift is the stocking because it was made with them in mind.

The past few years we have struggled to get all of the stockings, supplies and postage that we needed to fill the requests from these troops and from their families.  We were to the point of putting units on a wait list until we received everything we needed.  Of course I was praying we would, and we did.  We sent out close to 3000 last year so we figured we might get requests for about 3500.

That didn't happen.  Requests started coming in early this year.  They were coming in from wives, daughter, aunts, sisters and friends.  The requests were coming directly from the troops themselves, asking if we could possibly put them on the list because the morale was so bad.  You all know what I said.  I said yes and the number of stockings needed started climbing up to 2000 by the middle of summer.  I prayed for a miracle, and several miracle happened. 

We were able to have a booth at the Open Aire Market in Sequim, Washington this year.  We had a good time meeting our neighbors and visitors to the Market.  We invited them to sign a little card to put into the stockings and they did.  They picked out the stocking for the note, and we hung it on a tree. 

The next miracle, and this was a big miracle, came through Debbie Colgrove's column at on Sewing.  At the end of August I started getting emails from people who wanted to sew stockings for OHS, a lot of them.  I was puzzled as to where this was coming from.  Finally one lady told me she read about OHS in Debbie's column.  A check of the hits for our website showed it went from 23 on August 26th to 179 afterwards.  We truly can't thank Debbie enough for telling people about us.  The rush was then on.

 We ended up on a newsletter for the machine embrodiery groups
 Knitters started sewing so they could get more to us.
 One nice lady did over 300 stockings for us.
 A group of retired folks got together one weekend and sewed and stuffed stockings for us as a community project.
 Knitters who had never heard of us found out about us through Debbie's column.
 Kids continued to decorate stockings for us.
 The crochet groups also got involved.
And the Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts, Camp Fire Girls, 4-H Groups and Schools got involved. 

We had one school in Seattle collect their Halloweeen candy for the troops and donated 600 pounds.  It was a project sorting through all of this, but we are so grateful for the donation.

In additon to the stockings, we had groups send cases of product for the stockings, and we were blessed with donations for postage. 

Stockings were everywhere, some which had previously been stuffed earlier.  Some that needed to be stuffed. 

Over several weekends we logged in all of the wonderful stockings and supplies we received from everyone,
we stuffed them,
packed them up, and shipped them.
In total we have shipped out over 4100 stockings this year.  I just received another request for 400.  I am now praying for another miracle. 



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