February 3, 2011

Food Pantry service night!

The Baha'is and Unitarians had a joint service project last night at the food pantry.  It was so much fun!  I love that there are actual jobs that the kids can do at the food pantry.  They're not in the way as much as they are just slower workers.

We filled bags with ketchup packets and then heat sealed them closed, folded clothes and packed them in boxes, and bagged grocery items.  There was a family from the Unitarian group that sang old, old songs and commercials in perfect 3 part harmony the whole time, making for a sweet atmosphere. 

At some point, a man wandered in who said he was a traveling evangelist with a group called Hiking for Christ.  He kept heckling Haven about not giving him a high 5.  Finally Haven high fived him at which point he turned to Joe and I and said, "He finally gave me a high five!  Did you see that?  Oh, did I tell you that I have double pneumonia and had a 103 temperature this morning?"  Joe and I were both thinking, gee thanks for touching my kid's hands with your germs, sick man!  Eventually the police showed up and took him to a Super 8 motel for the night.  I'm not sure who he really was, or if he was actually sick, but we're watching Haven pretty closely now just in case.

 Hannah Jane spent most of her time folding clothes with Barb and Norma.  She mentioned later how dirty and old all the clothes were.  She seemed to really consider how good she has it after seeing what other people get.

The boys bagged ketchup with Joe and I all night.  They pretended like there were pet fish and sharks in the bags and they had to feed the ketchup packets.  At some point Hunter asked if the ketchup was for the poor people and if poor people only get to eat ketchup.  I reminded him of the last time we were there and all the different kinds of foods that we sorted then.  Later he said, "I'm getting really tired.  But if I don't bag ketchup, who will feed the poor people?"  Kind of cute!  Haven seemed only to be feeding sharks, but Hunter seemed to get that we had a higher purpose for the evening.  

As we left the woman who works there gave the kids Blow Pops and commented, "We never have workers this small.  Usually kids just run around while their parents work."  I mentioned her comment to Joe and asked why in the world kids would just run around when there is so much there that they can actually help with.  They really enjoy helping.  It's like a playground for them.  Last time we were there, an actual job was sorting through giant boxes of food and pulling out all the peanut butter and macaroni.  Every kid can do that!  And what a great chance to rear your kid with an appreciation for service!  There are so few service project that the kids can be an actually help with that I am sad that some go there and miss out on the chance.

The only thing I would do differently next time for our joint service project is have everyone do something social before or after so we could actually get to know the other community.  We worked side by side nicely enough, but I can't say I know any of the Unitarians now.  I only know that they are great workers and have some nice singers among them.  So, perhaps if there is ever a next time, I'll suggest a dinner or ice cream afterward.  But all in all, I think it was a fabulous evening during which two small minority groups in the valley could really get together and enact the kind of social change that they want to see in the world.  Doesn't get much better than that!


  1. Hi,
    I just stubbled across your blog via youtube. It is so great to see another Baha'i homeschooler online! Just wanted to say hi and will definitely be stopping by again! :)

  2. Hi, Kami! Glad you stopped by! I think I'll mosy on over and see if you've got a blog as well!


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