Before Mr. Wonderful and I got married, we received a very unique wedding gift. It was a generous check that came with one request:
“Use this to celebrate your first month together as a married couple.”
Last week, when we’d been wed a whole month, I glanced at that check. And here’s what I figured. We could enjoy a nice, kid-free dinner out at some new Austin hot spot. (Fooding is what I love best.) Or we could use this opportunity to teach the The Little Boys Club something about giving as a family.
Kids’ causes are dear to both our hearts, and when it comes to food, well, we’re big fans. So naturally, my first thought was feeding the hungry.
What if we took the twins shopping for food staples? What if we used that generous check to purchase those groceries and then deliver the donations to our local food bank ourselves?
One-third of the folks our food bank serves are kids, after all. Maybe this gesture could help the boys understand that three square meals a day are not a guarantee for every child in our community.
I floated the idea by ’em over clam chowder. In August. (Because when a kid is stoked about his suggestion for supper, you just go ahead and prepare hot, thick soup on a 103-degree afternoon.)
I told them about the check. I explained how fortunate we were to be eating clam chowder in August because some people don’t get to choose what they eat – let alone eat until their stomachs are full.
That’s when I suggested that we take a little field trip to shop for somebody else’s groceries. They listened carefully. Took it all in. Then, AC chimed in.
“I know something about this,” he said with a serious look on his face. “Because we saved an elderly last Christmas.”
An elderly! I smiled. That was his way of telling us he remembered the space heater we donated to a senior in our community last December as part of their school’s holiday wish-granting program. (We’re big on planting the seed of giving in their hearts.)
Anyway, I could tell we had buy-in, so I put AC in charge of the shopping list.
- peanut butter
- canned chicken and tuna
- canned vegetables
- canned fruit
- brown rice
- canned beans
When we got to the store, he followed me up and down each aisle, dutifully checking off each item. Brother loaded up our shopping cart and Dad made sure we didn’t go over the number on that check. Teamwork had us outta there with a cart full of groceries in less than 20 minutes.
A short drive down the road later and we pulled into the parking lot at the Capital Area Food Bank of Texas, where we dropped the groceries in the donation bin.
“How do you feel?” I asked them.
“Good!” they answered simultaneously.
Me too, I thought. Not a bad way to fulfill that request to celebrate our first month as newlyweds. I hope the boys will remember our “celebration” field trip as fondly as I will.
Wanna help feed your neighbors? Find your local food bank by ZIP code at FeedingAmerica.org. Whether you’re interested in donating your time, a few bucks or a couple of cans, you can get involved in more ways than one. And if you live in Central Texas, the Capital Area Food Bank makes it easy to get involved.