Well, obviously I don't mean a cupcake cake [patooie!]:
No, I'm talking about the (drumroll, please)...
Or, if you don't like "Christmas," you could go with the...uh... Charitable Charity Countdown!!
Many of you remember this crazy thing I did last year, when John and I skipped gifts and decorations and instead donated to a different charity each day for two weeks. I asked you guys to recommend places to give, and invited you to join us by giving a single dollar each day to the featured charity.
But the really crazy thing is that a lot of you did.
The response was so great, in fact, that our little catch-the-spirit campaign helped hundreds and even thousands of people and animals in need. We were also flooded with e-mails & comments from you readers, telling us what a positive impact giving those dollars made on your lives, too.
So this year, we're doing it again. Twelve days, twelve charities, and (hopefully) twelve of your hard-earned dollars.
This time each charity will be set up with either Paypal or First Giving, so you'll only have to enter all your information once, as opposed to twelve times. Most of you probably already have a Paypal account, and First Giving is a similar set-up (completely free to you to use) that only gives to charities.
Now, I know times are tough. I know many of you are out of work, or just scraping by. John and I lost our painting company because of the economy, and now rely on this blog to pay the bills. So, believe me, I know.
I also know that giving a dollar, and seeing that dollar combine with thousands of other people's dollars to feed the starving, heal the sick, rescue the needy, or just put a smile on a sick kid's face can be the key to a much more meaningful holiday this year.
It's a buck. Four quarters a day. Let's pool our pocket change and see what happens.
Only not in a "hey, why don't we smash these extra cinnamon buns together and make a big ol' green gaping maw of nastiness" kind of way:
So, starting today, there will be a short addendum on each day's post listing the name of a charity, a one sentence summary of what they do, and a link to give. Give your dollar to those you like, and then spread the word! Talk to your kids about it. Maybe go volunteer somewhere. Bottom line: do whatever it takes to remind yourself that there's more to this season than shopping, annoying renditions of "Jingle Bells," and edible snowman crime scenes:
There must have been some magic to
that hundred gallon jug.
For when they dropped it on his head
he became an accent rug!
Our kick-off charity is Give Kids the World, which provides children who have life-threatening conditions and their families absolutely *amazing*, dream-come-true vacations to the theme parks here in Orlando, Florida. (Check out the photo albums of the GKTW Village. It's awesome.)
Click here to give your dollar.
Clarification from john: Firstgiving doesn't work with PayPal. However, it is the only site that we found that allows people to give as little as a dollar and for us to track it. Plus, it's super easy to use. A couple of the charities will be set up with PayPal, though, and we will link to those pages when we have one. Thanks so much everyone. You guys are the best. -john