Random Acts of Zhu 2011 #RAZ2011

My husband and I have volunteered at our church in various aspects over the past decade. My husband is very involved in the Out Reach Program helping people in our community. Cutting down trees, trimming shrubs, painting homes, moving furniture, carrying in groceries . . . basically whatever needs to be done for people who call into our church and need assistance. Around the holidays, our church is called upon to help many families in our community who are needy. Each Thanksgiving we ask for donations of food for the food kitchen and we package up a lovely bag of groceries so families can celebrate a wonderful Thanksgiving meal. My husband passes out the turkeys and carry bags of groceries.

Each Christmas season, our church is called upon for the same food drive but also in a larger capacity. We accept families who need assistance and ensure these wonderful families can celebrate a Christmas they otherwise would be unable to do. My husband and I have always bought food for the food kitchen and every year our children pick paper ornaments off the church tree so we could purchase gifts for the families in need.

I want my children to understand that there are families who are not as fortunate as we are. I want my children to comprehend that not all children have food in their cupboards and pantries whenever they open the door. I want my children to learn to help those in need, as the bible teaches us. I want my children to have empathy and compassion. It is important to my husband and I, that our children have an understanding  and a heart for compassion.  In this crazy mixed up world there are few things that don’t come with a price.  Being nice and showing someone you care is something that is free to give and most of the times free to receive.

Last year we had the most wonderful day handing our ZhuZhu pets to families at our church. This was a family affair and my children had a great time giving a ZhuZhu to a child in need. All the families are so amazing and it really was a great experience to have a little chat with each family that came in to collect their food bags, turkeys, gifts and a surprise ZhuZhu.

This year I was really hoping that Cepia would once again have the Random Acts of Zhu. I was so overjoyed to have the opportunity to put my name in the hat and even more overjoyed to be chosen once again. When I spoke with the head of the Out Reach Program to confirm with her we were indeed getting more ZhuZhu's this year she was so ecstatic! She had been asking me for the past month if I knew yet.

The boxes started to arrive and my children were so happy to haul them all into our garage and stack them up and count them and inventory them and let me know what we had to give out to the children. I was so happy to see the joy on my own childrne' faces as they were so excited to simply give the ZhuZhus away. Most of the time when boxes arrive at our house, my children tend to want to rip the box open and see what they have inside to play with. This time they knew these boxes were not for them and they were overjoyed about it!

The wonderful folks at Cepia sent me 24 ZhuZhus, 24 Pet Carriers and 48 accessories. Our church had 95 families signed up to receive gifts and food this year. My children asked me if we could purchase some additionally ZhuZhus so that more families would receive some Random Acts of Kindness from Cepia. So off to Target we went in search of 24 more ZhuZhu and luckily they were on sale! This activity taught my children the responsibility that we have to one another as human beings to be compassionate and help out!

I took all the boxes and bags to our church and that afternoon all the bags were loaded up with food. More bags were loaded up with the gifts purchased by other parishners and the gorgeous ZhuZhus were placed in 48 of the families bags. The following week, the tables were set up and families came in to collect their bags of groceries, submit prayer requests, pick up a turkey and their huge bags of gifts to place under their Christmas trees at home.

Random Acts of Kindness was once again a HUGE success and I know many, many children were extremely happy on Christmas morning with a bit of ZhuZhu sunshine.

I encourage you to seek out an organization or family or charity to lend your helping hand. The rewards will come back to you in large numbers!

disclosure: I received the ZhuZhu pets and accessories as part of RAZ2011 program with Cepia LLC and MomSelect. We donated all of them. No monetary compensation was made, nor did we receive product for our own use in this program.