My AnySoldier Valentine
I don't have my camera with me today- so excuse the poor scan of my own little gourd valentine. The scan couldn't get it all sharp because of the convex surface. It's woodburned with a light stain of red and blue color. It says "American Hero" and I really like the lettering because it reminds me of the Declaration of Independence. It's about 4 inches across.
It's still January- but I was thinking about Valentine's Day. Valentine's Day in the service specifically. I thought how hard it must be to keep connections with your loved ones when you are so far away and the everyday grind must be so difficult. Since I learned about Anysoldier.com I have been trying to send care packages, postcards and letters of support when I can, and I encourage everyone else to do so as well.
The most recent package I made up consists of a Valentine's craft project. I cut some heart shaped blanks from some hardshell gourds using a craftsman mini tool. The convex surface of the gourd makes a very pleasing curved shape that really gives each one a unique appearance. There is one group of soldiers I know of who have a woodburning tool, so I am just going to send them the gourd blanks. The package going to Ramadi is also going to have some purple and pink satin ribbon- some dimensional fabric paint- sandpaper, and some tiny self stick paper roses (I figure that they will want to pretty up the valentines they send home) It's probably not much, but I hope that spending a few hours crafting a little trinket like this will help lighten the heart of some dad to think of the smile on his little girl's face when she gets it.
If doing something like this interests you, please go the the AnySoldier website and spend some time reading the updates from overseas. You will quickly get a feel for the types of things that the troops are in need of... but beyond snack-food and hygiene supplies- what they need the most is the knowledge that they are loved, supported, remembered and appreciated by those of us at home. The postage on a letter or package is the same as sending a letter to the next town over. You can put your support on a bumper sticker... but you can also put it in a package and send it to them directly.