As we start planning for the holidays, I start to get excited about our annual traditions. Setting up the advent tree, breakfast with Santa, and getting all our decorations out of storage are just a few things on my agenda for the next week. The thing I’m most looking forward to is when we get together and pack an Operation Christmas Child shoebox.
What is an Operation Christmas Child shoebox?
Operation Christmas Child is a really cool ministry by Samaritan’s Purse. The organization delivers shoeboxes of Christmas toys to kids all over the world. The kids don’t have to do or say anything to get the box of gifts. However, Samaritan’s Purse if happy to share the gospel with the children who want to hear it! Many of these kids live in third world countries, so this is an incredible treat for them.
Click here for my mega list of Operation Christmas Child Shoebox items on Amazon Prime!
What goes in a shoebox?
Because the shoeboxes have to go through customs, there are certain things you can’t send. Candy/chocolate, toothpaste, and liquids/lotions are on the list of things to avoid. Each box should have one item that stands out from the rest, called a “wow” item, and the rest of the space can be filled with personal care items, clothing, craft stuff, and school supplies.
This is our 4th year packing an Operation Christmas Child shoebox, and the one problem I always have is that I don’t have time to go shopping. Well, friends, this year I’m making things a little easier on myself and packing my shoebox with gifts from Amazon Prime. That way I don’t have to go to multiple stores to find just the right stuff. Since I was already adding toys and things to my cart online, I thought I’d share some ideas so you can pack an Operation Christmas Child shoebox using Amazon Prime as well! I put a ton of ideas in this mega list.
“Wow” Items for an Operation Christmas Child shoebox on Amazon Prime
Suggested “wow” items are a doll, a stuffed animal, a soccer ball with a manual pump, a small musical instrument, or a backpack.
Personal items for an Operation Christmas Child shoebox on Amazon Prime
Kids just love getting new personal items. Some things you can pack in a shoebox are a comb, hairbrush, toothbrush, washcloth, bar soap, cute bandaids, plastic containers such as a water bottle or plate, blanket, lip balm, and solar-powered flashlight. Older kids might enjoy a compact mirror, nail clipper and file, or deodorant. Or you might consider adding some fun accessories like sunglasses, hair bows, or a wristwatch.
School supplies that can go in a shoebox
Send your shoebox with some fun school supplies, like pens or colored pencils and a sharpener. Or tuck a combination of school stuff into a pencil case. Add a notebook, some tape or a glue stick and scissors, and you’ve got a mini school kit!
Other fun ideas for your shoebox
It’s so much fun to play with brand-new craft stuff and to imagine all the things that are just waiting to be created with them! It’s easy to find craft supplies for an Operation Christmas Child box on Amazon Prime. You can also add puzzles, a jump rope, playdough, binoculars, a kaleidoscope, or marbles (for older kids).
Being a part of Operation Christmas Child is so important to me. It’s an opportunity to spread joy to kids all over the world. If you made it this far, I want you to know that I’m praying for you and the child who receives your shoebox. Be sure and check out my mega list of ideas for packing a shoebox on Amazon Prime! I put a ton of things on it besides what is mentioned on this page, for kids of all ages. It took hours because I was looking for things that were both good quality and low cost. Basically, I did the hard work for you!
As I was building the list I felt drawn to sending our box to a teen/preteen child. Maybe I’m just feeling extra sentimental about my own oldest child who is on the brink of adulthood. In the end, I let the kids decide who to send the box to and they chose a boy age 2-4. I picked out most of our gift items from this list, adding a washcloth and a single bar of soap from Target, which are impossible to find on Amazon in single-use sizes! Thank you for blessing children in need around the world.