Sunday, December 24, 2017

Veterans Village 2017

It is a strange Christmas, my first one without Abuelo, the first one being no one's granddaughter.  There are no small children around, and things are almost excruciatingly quiet.
That is OK, I'll take it; I kinda hated chasing toddlers around anyway.

This year my parents asked for us to give things in their name instead of giving them gifts.

Because I was born partially disobedient, I sent them books (thank you Amazon Prime) but I also bought things for the veterans at Veterans Village in their name to add to the pile of donations from my students, former student-veterans, and a few angels out there who know who you are.

Mom and Dad, you sent 5 warm fuzzy blankets, 6 large soft towels, and 6 pairs of slippers to the Veterans. Oh and something else, but I'll get to to that in a minute.

Students from AMH2020 and my WOH class brought donations from December 1 - 8 that filled my office at TCC.

On December 20 (the day after my birthday, which starts the official "holidays") I moved all the stuff from my office to my house. This involved  a lot of going up and down stairs at work (until I remembered I could load the elevator) and concentrating really super hard on not getting locked out of 1) my car 2) the building and 3) my office.  

After THAT, I had to carry all the stuff into my house to be sorted out and counted.  

This is my fifth holiday season with the veterans and I have learned to not let people adopt particular veterans because some people get left out. I have learned to not bring wrapped gifts, and I have learned to make sure each veteran gets approximately the same gift(s).  

Yes, Zack asked if he could have a blanket and we had a quick discussion about the karma surrounding that kind of choice.  

After that, he joined me in stacking and counting and rolling.

I learned (from experience) to sort the shoes and clearly label them by size.  

 This year I wanted to do something new,  something that would represent how my parents always go a little bit extra, so I made gift bags for each veteran.  They are always asking for razors, so I gave them 2-3 triple bladed razors, a bunch of chocolate, and a few rocks and shells.

 This isn't the first time I've brought shells and rocks and asked questions like "how fast can a dead snail run" so don't worry about the veterans thinking they got coal in their stockings.

 Here is the story that explains rocks and shells:

Anyway, I enjoyed this immensely.

After all that, I added a giftbag to every towel and tied a cute bow around the towel too because I'm representing my mom and while I tend to race through things, she always takes the extra time to make sure things are "nice."

After that, I  loaded up my car and headed out to meet other people from the TCC community (you know who you are!!) to give the veterans warm holiday food, plenty of sweets, and our wishes that the New Year will bring blessings, wisdom and happiness.