It’s easy to stock up for OCC Shoeboxes if we start in January and keep our eyes peeled all year long, but there are specific times of year to look for super cheap items.
End of December through Early January – Christmas clearance. This is a great time to stock up on toys, and Christmas-themed personal care items that the stores will want to shift now that Christmas is over. Be on the lookout for socks, clothing, trinkets, plush toys, games, and even Christmas-themed school supplies.
January/February – Hats and mittens will likely be marked way down around this time of year. It’ll be the same with any cold weather gear.
February through April – The days after Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, and Easter, stuffed animals and holiday-themed toys and items are usually marked down half off. If you wait another day or two, they might be marked down as much as 70-80%! Just like at Christmastime, be on the lookout for socks, clothing, trinkets, plush toys, games, and even holiday-themed school supplies. While some of the items might not make sense in shoeboxes, other items can be cute or useful any time of year.
July through September – School supplies are on sale this time of year, and once you get into September, the prices drop drastically just before they get marked back up at the end of the month. Try not to wait until October, though, because if you do, you’ll be paying regular prices.
Other items to look for around September are summer clearance items like flip-flops, clothing, and water bottles.
November – Black Friday and Cyber Monday are definitely stressful shopping times, but if you’re already out (or online) shopping, keep your eyes open and you may find some good deals on items for shoeboxes.
All Year Long – Remember to be in prayer for the children who will receive shoeboxes with the items you are buying. Pray that they’ll know Christ and that they’ll put their trust in Him. Pray that the shoebox gifts will be a blessing to these children and there families, and that the items you buy will meet their very real, tangible needs.