By Shannon Halligan
MONSON, Mass. (WWLP/CNN) - The odds of finding a wedding ring in a bag full of metal pull-tabs is like searching for a needle in a haystack.
A Massachusetts woman beat the odds, though, when it came to her lost engagement ring.
Toni Flowers Perkins had been collecting pull tabs for years, donating them by the bagful to Shriner's hospital. But she never thought that through it she would get something back she lost more than a decade ago.
"I thought it was gone forever," she said.
"I just started picking out the colored tabs and I noticed something really shiny and I thought uh, that's not a tab," said Christy Marsden.
Christy got the pull tabs from Toni's Facebook page, where residents swap things back and forth.
Toni and her husband found the bag among Christmas decorations.
"The strange thing is we've had this bag forever, but this one bag seemed to never make it to Shriner's," said
It was while Christy was picking out the colored tabs that she spotted Toni's ring.
"Just sitting just like this like 'Oh look at me,'" she said.
And it takes much more than just a glance to differentiate between the diamond ring and one of the pull tabs.
"So I saw it and picked it up," said Christy. "I jumped right online and said I think I have something you might be looking for."
"It fit still and I was in tears," said Toni
Because she lost it 11 years ago.
"I was doing dishes and cleaning the house and then I noticed that night I couldn't find it, tore apart the house, trying not to tell him first," said Toni.
"I moved stoves and fridges and got into creepy, crawly places that no one wants to go. We kind of just gave up looking," said her husband, David Perkins.
"It wasn't mine so I figured what am I going to do? Bing it back to them," said Christy. "I was just here for tabs, not a ring."
And like the ring, they've come full circle. They started collecting to help others and they were the ones helped in the end.