Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Halloween Math and Thoughts

4 kids + 2 Adults = 6 Halloween Costumes

6 Halloween costumes = lots of work

Note to self: Start on this stuff earlier, Heather.

Another note to self: All the work is worth it when your child, wearing his homemade Indian suit looks at himself in the mirror and says, "I'm a real Indian. I love Halloween. Can I wear this every day?"

*sometimes that moment is filled with sweet wonder. But one year I made a Super Man costume for Anson. I had it all ready. Dressed him up. Took him to the mirror for the big "reveal." He stood there for a minute or so, staring at himself. He said nothing. I wondered if he liked his costume. I was getting worried. Then, my normally low key, gentle child punched the mirror. That's right. Punched the mirror. He unleashed hot, super man fury on the mirror...he was so taken away by his costume.

Sometimes those first moments in front of the mirror are magical. Sometimes it causes you to say, "Whoa there...settle down Super Man."

None-the-less...magic was made.


kathryn said...

You might look into donating your clothes to Twin City Mission. That's what we do. I'm not sure about their prices, but the money they make stays local. I don't know what their general practice is, but I know of one person to whom they gave a lot of clothes (for free).

SocialWrkr24/7 said...

If you have a "Craigslist" listing for your area - put out a note for things you are giving away. As I was packing to move, I put out a post for 6 bags of womens clothes, included my sizes and had MANY responses. The woman who came and got them had already contacted two other people who had responded and agree to "pay it forward" after she went through the bags! I felt much better knowing that all my clothes were going directly to people who could use them! I also gave away a couch and two nightstands that otherwise would have ended up on a curb. Plus, they come pick it all up - saves me a trip to the donation site!

Jamie R. said...

I agree with you about cutting out the middle man to give directly to those that truly are in need, but Goodwill toddler clothes are 1.99 a piece. I find all my favorite name brands there (Gymboree, Janie and Jack, Gap Kids) and they are usually in really good condition. And I get all the kids shoes there because the little ones usually don't have time to wear them out before growing out of them. And I get lots of clothes there for myself but I only buy my favorite brands like Ann Taylor and White House/Black Market. I like getting to wear the clothes that are well made and fit well, but only spending $6.99.

Hendrick Family said...

That's awesome, Jamie!

I didn't care if they charged me those prices. I was at Goodwill for a totally different reason than a lot of people have to be. I was just sad to see the clothes I give away for free being marked up so high for people who need them.

I guess it was just eye opening. I always thought that by donating the clothes I was helping someone "in need."

I would gladly have given our clothes away all these years to someone, never expecting money in return. I guess I'm saying I just hated that Goodwill took them and marked them up so high.

I think it's great that we can get clothes for cheaper there than retail. When I donated the clothes though, I wanted to help people who truly needed the help. The end result at Goodwill (marking up the clothes so high) was not what I had in mind when I donate clothes to their store.

Again...just eye-opening.


One Crowded House said...

We have a "Christian Mission" here in NC and they give (not sell) the stuff you donate to those families who are truly in need....

and yes, our Goodwill has ridiculous prices as well- more than I would pay at Old Navy/Children's place clearance.

Jessica said...

I know of a great children's home that gives clothes directly to kids and families in need ;)

Lissy said...

I've never commented before, but I've been reading your blog for quite a while now after being introduced through Laura Bruner's blog, and I usually love what you have to say. I just wanted to say that before you argue against Goodwill's pricing, you should check out what they do with the profits. 84% of profits go to free Goodwill training programs so people can acquire job skills and education they would otherwise never be able to afford. They train people to work in IT, health care, retail and more. The rest of the profits go to operating costs and paying their employees. I think it's great that a donation center is teaching people to fish, rather than just feeding them for a day. You can visit for more information.

Hendrick Family said...

Thanks for the info. Lissy.

Kirby said...

The Apel's are going to be Indians, too!

Can't wait to get a picture of Ashton with his little Indian Princess!

Gabbie said...

I love Goodwill! I am able to get good quality clothes, major names I like for 5.99 or 6.99. While we don't need like some do...we do have to watch what we spend. Abbie is thrilled when I tell her she can spend $20 at Goodwill and get what would have cost over $100. It is a great lesson in teaching your children how to stretch their dollar and Goodwill is a good cause helping disabled people to have a skill and job. Having worked with very poor people in Guatemala, there is much to be learned from them about needing to pay for clothes, food, medical care, etc. In most cases , their pride would not allow them to take a handout. They are typically very hard working people, who work for what they eat and wear. I have read something about that in the Bible..:) We do not always do a service by giving things away. Goodwill allows people to purchase needed clothing items at a reasonable price. We should always be generous and give to those in need, but I don't think giving your unused items to Goodwill is necessarily a bad thing.....not a bash, just another thought!

The Heslip Twins said...

We have "Pinker" Bell, Peter Pan and a Lady Bug this year!

Bob & Judy said...

re Goodwill - I'm on both sides of the fence on this one. I agree that, while I might find $5.99 a really great price for jeans, it's too much for people who are really struggling to keep food on the table.

On the other hand, if you price everything really low, wouldn't some greedy creep buy it up, double the price and "garage sale" it?

At least the proceeds from Goodwill are plowed into the needy community, not someone's pocket.

I don't know the answer. Personal involvement always works better than a corporate or government strategy.

I do know that Jesus was generous and expects me to be.

Hendrick Family said...

Yep. That's where I am too after thinking through this more.

I don't think it's bad to charge something for the clothes.

I just could not get over how high the stuff was. I bought the ugliest dress EVER for $9.99. It was perfect for my costume...but it made me sad that someone else would have had to pay that much for something like that in the store. One of the girls in our life group said, "You can buy a really cute dress at Target for that much." She's right.

It seems like once again it might be middle class america...not the poor who are truly benefiting from Goodwill.

I'm also trying to find out how much the proceeds from our Goodwill in town helps people locally. It's hard to find that stuff out, but I'm looking.

I still land in the same place...

I need to know more people Hendrick...who I can bless by living out these words without the middle man:

Luke 3:11
John answered, "The man with two tunics should share with him who has none, and the one who has food should do the same."


ren said...

I don't know what the deal is with Goodwill. In the last 5 years they've really jacked their prices. A set of sheets for $20?! A skirt for $10, shirts for $6? It didn't use to be that way. Now I go to Savers or Thrift Town. I can buy in style new stuff on the clearance racks at Old Navy, so you won't be seeing me at Goodwill any more. We give our used clothes to children/families at our church. Bada-bing!

Hi. My name is Alanna. said...

I haven't read the comments yet, but just in case no one else has told you yet, there are bins all over Bryan College Station marked "Ronald McDonald" and they take clothing, shoes, toys, books, etc. for the kids at Ronald McDonald houses and their families. They all go to charity - none are sold (as far as I know). These are for people in need. If you need to know where they're at, I know of 2 off the top of my head. 1)At the corner of Wellborn and Rock Prairie in the Shell gas station parking lot. 2) At the corner of Wellborn and Holleman at the gas station parking lot also.

Also, up north, the Salvation Army would come and pick up all your stuff if you wanted to get rid of things that were useful. Just call them and they'd come. Don't know if they do it here, but you can always check.

Another thing - sometimes WIC and other offices will give clothing as will the American Red Cross to people in need. Check with them too.