Our Lemonade Stand – Part 2 of 2

Do you have a small business? If so, have you sponsored an event for advertising? I was thrilled with the opportunity to meet individuals who stopped by our garage sale. Our family was able to hand out about 70 business cards to spread the word about Using Time Wisely. The kids enjoyed taking turns helping: one serving the customer and the other handing out business cards. The partnership worked very well.

Continuing where we left off last week with the preliminaries established and the ingredients purchased, we were ready to prepare for our lemonade stand at our community garage sale sponsored by Using Time Wisely.

Ready to raise some money

THE PREPARATIONS

With all the ingredients purchased, I was ready to get started. First, I worked on the signage using rubber cement to adhere the letters to the poster board. When I decided to change the wording a little, I spent some time cutting out letters with scissors. We made one sign for the lemonade stand and one for the sponsor: Using Time Wisely. With two signs to make, I spent between 1-2 hours with interruptions completing the signs.

Lemonade Stand signage

When I baked the cookies, I made 24 cookies per batch. With 120 total cookies, it took about 6 batches at about 11 minutes each. While waiting for the cookies to bake, I was preparing the next batch and placing the finished cookies on the cooling racks. Making the cookies took about 1.25 hours.

Paul, my wonderful husband, helped make the lemonade while I gathered the cups, napkins, beverage container, and placed the cookies in two 9”x13” containers. When the preparations were completed and the kitchen cleaned, we had spent between 3 – 4 hours preparing for our event.

THE EXCITING EVENT

Generous Giver - full cups of lemonade

The next morning, my husband cut the lemons and prepared the beverage container. We setup in our driveway on top of our children’s play table. This table has a drawer where we kept the money earned. The picture embedded in this post is of my three children around their lemonade stand. Throughout the cool morning, we sold few drinks, but as the sun emerged from the clouds, our business picked up. Other families in our neighborhood had stands as well, so we had some competition this year. 🙂

Our son started off well, but he quickly got tired of asking, “Would you like lemonade or cookies?” Our daughter is a great salesperson. She would walk up and ask, “How many lemonades and cookies would you like?” She did not give them a chance to turn her down. She enjoyed filling up the cups, and I mean, filling up the cups. She would forget to release the dispenser, so she overfilled a few times.  With our daughter selling, our son advertised for the sponsor by handing out Using Time Wisely business cards. It was cute watching them participate and work together to raise money for this teacher.

By the end of the morning, Paul and I remained at the lemonade stand. The baby was taking her nap, and the older two were inside playing. They had enough selling and were ready to move on to playtime.

THE RESULTS

After cleaning up from the garage sale and eating lunch, we unloaded the money from their table. Having learned to count money this year, my son stacked the quarters and counted his earnings. He and his sister raised $25.01 for his teacher’s mission trip. Their sponsor agreed to match their earnings up to $25. The result: $50.01 hand-delivered to this appreciative teacher.

Counting the blessings

We were thrilled with our fundraiser’s results. Even with the cool morning and competition with our neighbors, we did well. For Paul and I, the bigger picture is that our children are learning how to give to others. When you don’t have the resources to give, you can be creative! What creative ways have you used to raise money for someone else?

Our Lemonade Stand – Part 1 of 2

Have you ever been asked to donate or support a charitable cause only to realize you don’t have the resources available to do so? I have and so have my children. When this dilemma occurred recently, I loved my son’s resourceful solution to helping others.

At the beginning of April, our family received a letter from my son’s next-year’s teacher. This letter informed us that she would be leaving on a mission’s trip this summer to help other teachers. She asked for prayer and financial support for her trip. Upon hearing this news, our kind-hearted son asked if we could sell lemonade and cookies again to raise money for her trip. When I recovered from the emotion of the moment, I fully embraced this idea, and encouraged him with help and support. The support came as Using Time Wisely sponsored the lemonade stand.

Waiting for customers

THE PRELIMINARIES

With a plan of preparing lemonade and chocolate chip cookies, we needed a great place with lots of people and a date for our event. Having a jammed-packed schedule, I wasn’t sure when we could fit it in. I kept the idea in the back of my mind and proceeded with our planned activities. While checking my e-mail one afternoon in May, I discovered that our HOA Board had scheduled a community-wide garage sale on a Saturday morning. My immediate response was “perfect!”

Two years ago we had a community-wide garage sale. Our family sold lots of items as we decluttered our home, and my son had a lemonade stand. He did really well that morning making over $40 selling lemonade, tea, M&M cookies, and chocolate chip cookies. This year I was not quite that ambitious as we planned our lemonade stand.

THE INGREDIENTS

The next week, I found the Nestle’ Toll House refrigerated cookie dough on sale at Publix which I paired with coupons. I purchased 4 packages of the mini cookies which make 40 cookies each. Yeah, I saved myself money (sale with coupons), energy (stirring the batter), and time (mixing the ingredients for a homemade batch).

On my next trip to Aldi, I picked up 4 containers of the instant lemonade mix, lemons, and napkins.

Then the week of the event, I purchased the craft materials to make our signs. I then visited my neighbor, who allowed me to use her Cricut (pronounced: cricket). This neat machine looks like a small printer, and it cuts out the letters. Having a number of cartridges for her machine, my neighbor helped me choose a font, then graciously spent her time creating the letters for our signs. This was time well spent. I was able to visit with her and accomplish a task quickly (about 30 minutes) that would have taken at least 2 hours to cut out each letter with scissors.

After deciding on the lemonade stand, setting our home as the location, choosing the date of the sale, and purchasing the ingredients (supplied by Using Time Wisely), we were ready to prepare for our event. Come back next week for details of our preparations, event, and the results of our creative way to raise money for a teacher’s mission trip.