Balikbayan means 'back home'
(I think! Am I right, my Tagalog-speaking friends?)
Balikbayan companies in the U.S. and in other countries
provide the means for Filipinos living overseas
to send goods back home to family and friends living here in the Philippines.
And crazily enough, we benefit.
These Balikbayan companies still (unlike the Post Office) ship goods.
And any given box of certain dimensions costs a flat rate to send,
regardless of weight.
|Mark carries in a heavy Balikbayan box|
This is the way that we
(with lots of help from both Mark's and Barbara's wonderful sisters back in the U.S.!)
have been able to ship curriculum for our homeschooling,
items for Mark's work,
and even Christmas and birthday gifts
at $65-$90 per box, in about 6-8 weeks.
(YES, that sounds like a lot of money.
But comparatively it's a very cheap rate,
especially when we're shipping heavy books,
or parts that are unavailable here.
And you can see that these are pretty big boxes!)
Of all expats, we here in the Philippines must be the most spoiled because of this option.
Just a couple of weeks ago our family received a Balikbayan box from
our thoughtful friends, L&J,
(♥ thanks again, to you, friends! ♥)
who wanted to bless not only us,
but also the neighborhood kids who spend time here.
|Michael carefully opens the box as we all watch|
Every time a Balikbayan box arrives,
it feels a little bit like Christmas!
It's pretty exciting for all of us.
This big box was full of special foods we don't have here,
some tools for homeschool and for Mark's work,
LOTS of craft supplies! :hop: to share with the neighbor kids,
and other very thoughtful supplies and surprises.
We have every reason to give thanks,
and Balikbayan boxes are just one more reason!