The Christmas gifts Devola resident Brandy Barengo looks forward to most are the ones her children open.
"We really enjoy it as parents, watching our kids and how excited they are," she said.
The thought of other parents missing out on that because they can't afford to get their children gifts, and the children's disappointment, moved the 28-year-old personal trainer and Washington County Career Center instructor to organize a gently used toy sale for next month, with proceeds going to buy gifts for children being helped by Washington-Morgan Community Action's Secret Santa program.
EVAN BEVINS The Marietta Times
Devola resident Brandy Barengo, left, watches as her son Dominick, 4, and daughter Bailey, 1, play with toys they are donating to a sale to raise money for children in the Washington-Morgan Community Action Secret Santa program.
"We do clear out our toy room and I thought maybe other people do the same and all the stuff we're getting rid of can maybe benefit someone else," she said.
The collection has started with toys her son Dominick, 4, and daughter Bailey, 1, no longer use.
"Dominick has been all about it," she said. "He started to pick out toys and find ones that he doesn't really play with anymore to donate to them."
If you go
What: Sale of gently used toys.
When: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 11.
Where: Holiday Inn on Pike Street in Marietta.
Benefits: Children in the Washington-Morgan Community Action Secret Santa program.
To donate: Toys can be dropped off starting Monday at the Dough Boyz Pizza locations in Devola and Lowell.
On Friday, Dominick was pleased to show off the items he was parting with, including a "Cars" racetrack set.
"We had 'em for a long time," he said of the various toys. "We have to give them away to (help) someone who doesn't have some toys."
Starting Monday, people can donate toys - "something that still has all the pieces to it, something that still works if you put batteries into it," Barengo said - at the Dough Boyz Pizza locations in Beverly and Devola.
Dough Boyz owner Sam Skinner said the setup is a win-win for him, with people coming into the restaurants to drop off toys and the toys helping children and families in need.
"You just try to help out the community any way you can," he said.
Barengo said she's wanted to help families in need at Christmas for a while, but the season puts a strain on her family's finances as it does on others. She's hopeful the sale can be of use to families even beyond the ones in the Secret Santa program.
"It'll benefit people that are trying to do their Christmas shopping list on a budget as well as the families that we are trying to help," she said.
The sale is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 11, at the Holiday Inn in Marietta. Unsold toys will be donated to the Salvation Army, Barengo said.