When I was going through cancer treatment, my friend, Lynne, from Ohio sent me the "coolest" basket of treats to make me smile. She called it an "In the Pink" Basket and the idea was to open a package any time I was feeling "blue". At the time, Elle was almost 4 so I let her pick the package and I opened one a day until they were all opened. It was fun for me and also fun for her! This was such a great idea that I couldn't wait until I was in a position to do the same for someone else. Since then, I have had several opportunities to create an "In the Pink" basket - individually, and working together with a group. It is a great idea for a work group or Sunday School class to do - everybody just contributes a gift wrapped in pink. Depending on the size of your group, you can create a pretty awesome basket!
Here is how it works:
- Find a basket - size will, of course, depend on your number of items. Many times, I have already had a basket on hand. At other times, I usually find at Hobby Lobby. Once, I sprayed painted the basket pink, but that is not necessary.
- Collect gift items that will be comforting and useful to the recipient. This idea is not limited to cancer patients. Anybody going through a difficult time will be blessed by this gesture.
- Wrap everything in pink! I usually use a variety of pink wraps so that it isn't boring!
- Include a note with the explanation - I usually print on card stock and tie on basket with pretty ribbon!
- Deliver to your friend and enjoy the smile on her face!
- iTunes Gift Card
- Book - something fun and upbeat!
- Photo Album - Having photos of your family and friends is so uplifting!
- Gas Card
- Hard Candy/Peppermint
- Playing Cards
- Note cards
- Hand Sanitizer
- Lip Balm
- Hand Soap
- Water Bottle - I personalized with the Cricut machine!
- Puzzle Books
- Inspirational quotes or verses (I usually include Jeremiah 29:11 which my friend, Gina, gave to me on several cards that I posted in prominent places around my home)
You know your friend so be creative, based on her likes/dislikes. For cancer patients, remember that tastes and appetites change so food items might not be best. Most patients spend time traveling to and from doctors offices and hospitals so anything to support the travel such as gas cards, coins for vending machine, parking money, etc. is helpful. Also, remember that alot of time is spent in waiting areas with nothing really to do so books, magazines, puzzles, etc. might be in order - just make sure it's something she would enjoy. Ipods/Iphones can provide an opportunity to them to listen to music or watch tv/movies - if she has these electronics, the iTunes card is perfect! For lotions, candles, hand sanitizers, etc. be aware that many patients can't handle strong scents so go with something mild.
Suggested Wording For Tag
For you...........a basket of gifts to encourage you along your journey. Whenever you are feeling "blue", just open a package and, hopefully, you will feel "in the pink" again! You are in our thoughts and prayers!
This Pink Basket was created for you by your friends from ____________. The idea behind is that, when you are feeling "blue", you can choose a gift to open to help you feel "in the pink"! We just wanted you to know that your friends are with you through the tough times. May each and every gift be a blessing to you through your journey. Praying daily for your strength, courage and healing.
Be an encouragement to someone today!