I can not believe it, I am seriously speechless, and believe me (you can ask Dominick!!) that doesn't happen often. It was less than 12 hours ago when I was sharing with friends over Thanksgiving dinner what our little blog family here was trying to accomplish...and saying I highly doubted we would reach the 2nd $1000 as I figured we had pretty much tapped everyone already and was thrilled with the 1st thousand we had raised. If we were able to manage to raise the 2nd $1000 I assumed it would take at least 3 weeks or so and arrive in dribs and drabs.
I apologize profusely for underestimating all of you, my dear virtual family.
Do you realize what you all have done? In only 7 days...count that...SEVEN DAYS...you have donated $2000 and seen to it with your incredible generosity that over 250 orphans in Kyrgyzstan will have a real Christmas, most for the very first time. This is phenomenal, and I stand before you quite humbled at your response to our request.
To think that the majority of this was totally anonymous giving is so cool, and though I will never be able to thank most of you individually, I do offer up my heartfelt gratitude here to all of you...those of you who encouraged others with their comments on our blog here, those who sent out private emails to family and friends, those who linked to John and I from your own blogs and wrote heartfelt pleas for the cause of children you have never met. Thank you for remembering that really, these are all our children.
John has an outline on his blog now of all that "our" kids will receive, and MAN has he been able to do a lot with $2000! Check it out:
61 kids from 2 orphanages as well as other children from very needy circumstances (Removed from the dump, recently reunited as a family, and others) will be treated to a trip to the local version of McDonald's and receive a Kyrgyz style "Happy Meal" including a burger, fries, coke and little toy. Kenny had never had a soda before we adopted him and took him for his first lunch out, so you can imagine that some of these children might never have had a soda for a treat. They will then receive a small gift each...and then, get this, there will even be enough money for them to attend a special children's theater!! The other orphanage with 150 children will have a special Christmas dinner as well as a gift for each child and a small gift for the caretakers as well whom we all know are sorely underpaid and almost as underprivileged as the children and are often forgotten.
So as we kick off our Advent Season, as we trudge through the malls of America (and Canada!) loaded down with sacks of gifts for our friends and family members, as we sing carols and light candles and drink eggnog and decorate trees, let us all remember the real reason for Christmas is not Santa Clause or reindeer or presents for ourselves, the real reason for the season is what you all have already represented here this week...it is the Spirit of Giving, it is showing God's love for all, it is caring for those who are uncared for.
And while John has a pie or two thrown at him this evening in front of over 100 people, and as the LaJoy's plan the logistics of our own pie throwing extravaganza this week, we will have giggling sons and daughters, thousands of miles away from one another celebrating the joy of giving to others, and I know that all of us will have certain faces of children left behind come to mind as we willingly submit ourselves to the faux humiliation of being firmly splatted in the face with a pie. It is something I will eagerly look forward to, as will John and Dominick (who didn't even realize he was volunteered for it!).
Can't WAIT for the photos to come over the next month, of pies and messes and children with happy faces!!
Hey John, is there any way at all we can locate a Santa suit in Kyrgyzstan and have him visit for real????