With a week left before Christmas, one of the greatest ways to celebrate the season is to give back. This year, I’m going above and beyond the giving spirit (with Mr. LH’s initiative); we’ve decided to contribute to the Spark of Love Toy Drive hosted by the Los Angeles Fire Department and ABC 7. All of the monetary gifts we receive this month plus a portion of our own income are being applied toward the toy drive. So far, we’ve purchased 65 gifts for children ages 3 to 16.

Our decision to generously donate this year was made partly because we don’t have any children of our own and feel sympathy towards children that receive very little this time of year. I was always fortunate enough to have a joyous Christmas with plenty of presents under the tree and wanted to help those less fortunate experience a happy Christmas. We also felt that using our resources to help make an under served child’s holiday special was a better use than giving to children that already receive plenty of gifts this time of year. From a logical stand point, this made more sense to us.

And though I feel that the holidays have become a gluttony of consumerism and many people have lost the spirit of the holiday season, I still think children should receive some gifts this time of year. Children see this as a “magical” time even though many young one’s don’t realize what the holiday is truly about (as some of them told me recently when I asked why we celebrate Christmas, “It’s about presents,” or “About getting a tree.”) Contributing to their joy is why we chose this type of donation.

If you live in Southern California and are interested in donation, fire stations and some participating Starbucks are collecting gifts for this year’s event. There are also a few Stuff-the-Bus events going on this week around the Riverside and Orange County areas. We’ll be heading to a Stuff-the-Bus event later in the week to take our sleigh/car filled with toys.

I feel a bit like Santa. 🙂

What events or charities do you contribute to this time of year?