Holidays and Soldiers

I told you I would find other ways to help military folk out this holiday season and now I’ve waited until it’s almost too late!

The Red Cross is doing its annual Holiday Mail for Heroes. Deadline is THIS Friday, but I thought maybe while you’re writing out the rest of your Christmas cards, it would be easy (SUPER EASY!) to write an extra one or two. Soldiers like cards with either gnomes or glitter Eiffel towers on them, right? Right. Everyone likes mail. And a letter of appreciation from a stranger could mean a lot to someone laid up in a hospital bed.

Just kidding, I just read the rules. No cards with glitter. Who sends glitter into hospitals?? Gnomes it is!

Many communities sponsor Adopt-A-Soldier or Soldiers’ Angels type program. Maybe your church? Your child’s school?

I hesitate to recommend specific smaller charities, as I am always a little nervous about doing so. That being said, there are plenty of legitimate options out there. I think I mentioned last year that I’m a big fan of Charity Navigator and investigating where donated money goes.

Here’s another idea. And perhaps my favorite. How many Facebook friends do you have? Chances are someone, if not IN your circle, VERY CLOSE to your circle has a military family connection. Sometimes you don’t have to go very far to find someone who needs a little help. Not only during the holidays but other times of the year as well. Maybe it’s fixing a meal, or showing up – cleaning supplies in hand – and refusing to take no for an answer. If kids are involved, perhaps a day of free babysitting? If the soldier is single, or the spouse is lonely, perhaps a day of kindness, time, and listening.

Long story short, there are so many ways to help. This time of year and every time of year.

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