About 6 years ago I was called to be the Enrichment Counselor in my ward Relief Society. This made me laugh because I had been a sporadic attendee to this ward's Enrichment meetings. But, this was what I was supposed to do and I realize now what a growing experience it was for me. At one of our stake training meetings I was given a bunch of great ideas for Enrichment meetings; one of them being the Service Auction. It was a big undertaking but decided to go for it. My committee and I made paper money, put together about 70 bidding paddles, came up with a questionnaire and made dinner for about 70 people. Of course, any time you are in charge of a big event, you are worried things might not work out the way the are supposed to but the whole night was a success. Everyone that attended brought either an item that they had made or filled out a service coupon to auction off. Then everyone filled out a questionnaire that gave them points towards "service money". Some of the ways to earn "money" were "5 points for each load of laundry you have done this week" or "15 points if your Visiting Teaching is done" "20 points if you've been married for 25 years or more" "10 points if you've had FHE every week this month". You get the picture. So after all your points are added up, you trade them in for "money" and then the bidding began. Our RS Pres was the auctioneer (Karen, who is one of my greatest friends now) and people really got into the bidding. Everyone left with at least one or two items and a great memory. So, the next year, we held the 2nd annual Service Auction.
Saturday night I attended the 5th annual Service Auction. This is still one of the favorite activities for the sisters in the ward and we all look forward to it. I took some Christmas Cards that I made and a board with vinyl lettering that says "Believe". I ended up coming home with a plate of cookies, homemade salsa (with chips), a cute pink baby blanket and, my favorite, a coupon for a sister in our ward to clean my house!!!! I also came home bouyed by the friendships I have with the women in my ward and the love they show to me. I'm so glad that this has become a tradition in our ward, despite all the changes in the RS presidencies, everyone knows that this is an event that can't be missed! I'm already looking forward to next year's auction!