Make Christmas Count

Jesus came to earth to be fully Man.  And remained fully God.  He came as a baby.  A gift as a baby, to the world.  Babies are gifts.  A topic on which I could go on, and on about.  Another day. 
So what better way to honor that gift, and the real and only reason for celebrating Christmas, than to help a child.  Over at Life Rearranged, Jeannett Gibson gets it.  And she uses her extensive network to do great things.
Meet Xander.  He’s so sweet!

He’s in an orphanage, in Eastern Europe.  He will likely not get new Christmas p.j.’s, or open a Christmas stocking, or suck on a candy cane and have all the sticky goodness drip down his chin. He doesn’t have a mommy or daddy to tuck him in at night, or wrestle, tickle or play with. I love what Jeannett wrote about Xander, its exactly what is in my heart and the reason I began an Orphan Ministry at my church:

“Once when Henry was a bitty baby, I found myself in his nursery in the wee hours of the morning consoling his whimpering and kissing his feverish little forehead. I remember thinking: of all the people in the entire world, I’m the only one who can make him feel even remotely happy. All he wants is his mama. No one else will do.
And suddenly, out of the blue, in the glow of a new mom’s overwhelming love for her first baby, I was crushed at the thought of the orphan crisis.
How, if my life were different…if one of millions of things weren’t exactly the same as they are now…
I was devastated at the thought of a feverish and sick child whimpering in a crib alone.
No mama to stay up and whisper sweet nothings and coo in his ear.
No daddy to chase him around the house and throw him high into the air for no reason but to elicit squeals of delight.
No cherry flavored Tylenol and cool washcloths for his head.”

Xander wants a Mommy and Daddy for Christmas.  You might be those people.  But if you aren’t, you can help him get to his home.  You can give toward his rescue.  Even $1.  Because $1, from a lot of people, makes a lot of money.  And yes, there is a giveaway connected to this fundraiser.  But I like to think of it more of a thank you.  Someone will get a nice thank you gift, for helping Xander have the most basic of human needs, a family.  Barn Light Electric is going to match the first $1000! So go to Life Rearranged and give.  Give and then spread the word.  Because a friend of a friend of a friend might be the perfect fit to bring that sweet boy home and give him a life that he truly deserves.

Day 10: Giving Trees

Hello! I am Rebecca (Mari’s sister) and today I am guest-blogging for Mari.

It is the holiday season now. The time where we worry about presents, food, family, etc. While you are listening to Christmas music (my personal favorite is Dean Martin’s Baby It’s Cold Outside), remember a lot of people even in our economic climate in the United States don’t have gifts to give their children, maybe not even food.
Here is something you can do to help them. I invite each of you to search out locally for a giving tree. These trees will have tags on them with the name of a child and something they want for Christmas. It could be a pair of shoes or a toy, but it is something they wouldn’t otherwise have the opportunity to unwrap. Most public schools have giving trees. Call and check. Put a smile on a child’s face this year.

If you can’t find a local giving tree, help out Reece’s Rainbow. They advocate and assist orphaned children affected by Downs Syndrome.

In only five years, your donations have made it possible for more than 500+ children with Down syndrome and other special needs to find their “forever families”.  That is PROOF that your gifts truly are saving lives and changing hearts around the world.”

Click on the ornament below to donate and help these beautiful children find a family! Donate $35 or more and you will receive an ornament with the photo of the child you helped.

Grab This!

And always remember:




Day 9- News Worthy News

Bill Keane, the creator of comic stip “Family Circus”  has died.  I’m actually really sad about this.  The memory of sitting down on Sundays next to my dad to read the comics is so finely ingrained in me.  I can still smell his Pert Plus scented hair, and hear his chuckle as he read next to me and pointed out the really funny ones that he didn’t want me to miss.  And when they were just so funny that he needed to share them with everyone he would call to my mom, “Ang, you gotta read this, this is just like our family!”  Then I would go and get the scissors and after we had finished all of the Funnies, I would cut his favorites out and put them on the fridge for the week.  So whenever he went to the fridge, Dad would get a big smile on his face.  Our favorite was “Family Circus.”  It was all about a family that loved each other very much, and kids that got into mischief but were still tucked into bed by both their parents every night.  Time goes by, things change, I miss our “Family Circus.”  Thank you Mr. Keane for illustrating family life, and bringing it to us for so long.  Even when we grow up, leave home and start our own circuses, the precious memories remain.  And sometimes that’s all that remains, so they become all the more sacred.

Day 7- News Worthy News

I would love to be able to run 5 miles let alone an entire marathon! So when others do it, and live to tell the tale, I am so impressed. It is so easy to get in a rut and just lounge in my spare time…. and never get up again. You know, except to go in search of my chilren’s Halloween fun size Milky Ways. I was doing so good running a couple of months ago, and then it got all rainy and cold. But this news story isn’t called “Lazy Ohio Woman Gains Weight.” Its about awesome-ness. Go read it! And I will turn on my new Wii Fit {thank you Rebecca!} and get back to running to a virtual waterfall.

Day 5- BIG News: National Orphan Sunday

Tomorrow is Orphan Sunday.  This SHOULD be big news.  Last year was the first year I knew it even existed.  And my life was forever changed after a friend posted a video to her Facebook page.  It changed so much in fact that, now Church of the Open Door in Elyria, as of tomorrow, will have an up and running Orphan/Adoption Care ministry.  God will take you on a wild ride if you let Him.  I am so excited for the future of my church and the big things that are going to happen.

Day 4- People Doing Things Worthy of The News

There is an auction going on!  But not just any auction.  A super convenient auction.  That you need no knowledge of bidding number registration, when to itch your nose and when not to, fear of coughing and buying a monkey knick-knack for $20,000…. you know.

Its an auction for a great cause.  Cause is the wrong word.  Its for something unbelievable wonderful.  Its to help a really awesome family adopt one, possibly two sweet children from Ethiopia!!!

To sum up: great auction, great people rescuing babies!  You also get to avoid long lines of Christmas shoppers and feel good about spending your money. Because you did something much greater than buying a gift for a family member of yours, you helped a family complete their family.

Here are just a few of the items: Coach purse, hand-made quilt, Kindle, jewelry etc.

The auction lasts until November 10.  Go here:, today.  Like right now.  If you are up in the middle of the night and tempted to buy something from an infomercial, don’t.   Bid on an item from my friends.  Do something good.  Are you usually an EBayer?  Craigs-lister?  Participate in this Adoption Auction instead!!! 

Day 3- News Worthy News

I’m tired of having the internet and National news inundated by socialite DUI’s and divorces.  So I’m embarking on giving to you, News Worthy News. Stories of real import. Join me.  Read real accounts.  Share real accounts.
For instance, one could read about these sweet little girls, their ecstatic Mom and Dad and their successful surgery:
“Angelica and Angelina Sabuco, twins who were born conjoined at the chest and abdomen, are now separate little girls.
The 2-year-olds were separated Nov. 1 in a 10-hour surgery at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. The operation was the culmination of several months of complex planning involving specialists from nearly every part of the hospital.” Read the full article at Stanford University News.