Who knew that one of the secrets to happiness was sending a box of sunshine to someone else?! Well, James M. Barrie did. I’ll bet if you try this crafty idea, you’ll find his words speak truth.
http://bac.org.au/ministrybox-kids/ Those who bring sunshine to the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves. – J. M. Barrie
The online version of TIME dedicates a portion of its web site to the philosophy of “Question Everything.” Under that heading, influential people are asked to answer interesting questions. In October 2015, the question was asked “What’s the Secret to Happiness?” To paraphrase the author’s answer, http://avakashani.com/?page_id=115' the secret to happiness is helping others. Truthfully, I don’t think that’s a secret. We’ve heard it ourselves since we were young and pass it along to our children when we say “It’s better to give than to receive.” We’ve witnessed it innocent children at birthday parties when they crowd the birthday boy or girl, eager to watch them open each of their gifts. It feels great to give someone something that brightens their day. That’s where the Box of Sunshine comes in to the picture.
I had a friend down in the dumps because her daughter was leaving for college. To help ease the pain, we talked about the fun care packages she could send. It was then that I realized the person who needed a care package most at that time was my friend. I thought, “There should be care packages for the parents who, for the first time, have kids leaving for college!” After researching ideas on Pinterest, I came across the idea of sending a Box of Sunshine (from the blog Smashed Peas and Carrots)
It was so fun to put together! I indulged in buying frivolous items for the only reason that they made me smile. Well, that and because they were yellow. That’s the whole idea. Yellow items that brighten someone’s day.
The items I bought weren’t expensive. With the exception of a $5 movie from Target, a Starbucks gift card and a small Charming Charlies bracelet, the majority of the other items I picked up at the dollar store. When you start to go overboard (believe me, you’ll start going down that path), remind yourself that it’s not about how much you spend. It’s about doing something for someone, just because. It’s about surprising a friend with the reminder that he or she is cared about.
Here are some of the items I included:
- $5 Little Miss Sunshine movie
- Jesus Today (Okay, this was blue so I wrapped it in yellow. She already had the original version.)
- Yellow nail polish/nail art
- Food/treats with yellow wrappers
- Minions cup from the movie Despicable Me
- Yellow bracelet from Charming Charlies
I also had a friend who wasn’t feeling well. The flu and family challenges had her feeling down. That’s when I took the idea to a different color and came up with the Beat the Blues Box. This one was a little different in that there’s not a lot of blue out there, so I took the liberty of including powder blues, whites, etc.
Items I packaged were the Mama Mia movie, Ghirdaelli white chocolates in blue packaging and a Daily Devotional journal. Just to name a few. I didn’t take pictures of that one, unfortunately. However, I do recall the note I sent with it. It went something like:
With all that you have been through…your family and the flu,
I thought that you may be feeling just a little blue.
So God spoke to my heart and told me what to do.
That’s why I sent you this package, made special just for you.
In both cases, putting these boxes together made me happy. It made me happy to know I’d put a smile on my friend’s face. Plus, I got to shop and have some creative fun, such as trying handlettering when addressing the box.
The next time you’re not feeling quite up to par, perhaps try making someone else feel better with a box of your own doing. I bet it brings a smile to both your faces!