In this isolated, quarantined, socially distanced and stay-at-home world, finding things to do can be exhausting. I decided to challenge my girls to come up with Sunshine bags for friends and family and it brightened both our and their day immeasurably.
Good morning friends!
How’s isolation treating you?
I’m lucky in that I am a (non-essential really) essential worker, so I’m able to get out of the house for a few hours each day and have a change of scenery and some (distanced) social interactions.
My kids (all of our kids) don’t have that. They are too young to take the car and go for a drive, they can’t play with their friends, or even go for a grocery shop for a change of scenery. They are, quite literally, imprisoned.
And my two are starting to get worn down with it all. I see the depression, boredom and cabin fever building and I feel awful for them… but what can I do?
WELL! The other day I gathered as many yellow items as I could find at the dollar store and brought home enough supplies to make 12 Sunshine bags.
What are sunshine bags?
They are small gifts (usually in the theme of yellow) dropped off to brighten someone’s day.
We each chose a few recipients we thought could use a little sunshine in their day and we sorted our “loot”:
Nothing in the Sunshine bags was all that exciting, and certainly not expensive – but the goal was to give my kids something exciting to plan out and anticipate, and to let the recipients know we were thinking of them.
You can’t have a Sunshine bag (or box) without Sunny D – it’s the foundation of almost every Sunshine care gift you’ll see. I bought single serve bottles for friends, and then larger bottles for when there was a couple/few people in the house.
I thought these velcro dart boards might be fun, and there is some yellow in them? Challenge a family member to “loser does dishes”, or “winner gets homemade caramels from her BF”. (Yeah, I didn’t win that one. 🤦🏻♀️)
I found these in the party aisle; 3 game pads per pack. I thought these would work for a distanced game – like send a few sheets to Nana and Papa and keep a few sheets at home and then play together over video?
Of course I brought home as many yellow treats as I could find.
And I couldn’t resist adding some small bulbs and peat pots – I mean what brings sunshine to anyone’s day more than flowers (and of course sunshine itself. 😂)
We set to sorting our sunshine bags tucking in different items depending on who we were giving them to. The girls had fun picking and choosing and imagining the surprise on their friends’ faces.
(So you see, I was reaching my goal!)
I made up a free printable that you can get here and print at home:
We drove around town dropping off bags of sunshine to friends’ doorsteps.
We did a little “ring and run” to make sure we kept “socially distanced” adequately.
And the recipients were SO PLEASED!
A gift out of nowhere, particularly a little bag of sunshine in an otherwise dreary day (weeks at this point).
That’s my Aunt – she’s 83 and hasn’t been able to leave her home for almost 7 weeks now.
Tell me smiling faces delivering treats wasn’t welcome?
As for my girls?
I think that smile says it all.
We killed part of a day planning, executing, and delivering our Sunshine bags, and they spent the rest of the day fielding texts and messages from the friends that we delivered to.
And don’t think that your Sunshine bag or box has to be store-bought goodies – it doesn’t at all! A small tray of cookies or muffins, or maybe a plant split from something in your own garden? There are so many ways to give (and therefore get) a smile.
Stay safe and healthy… and spread a little sunshine!