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« on: November 02, 2008, 01:46:02 am »
This thread is for our members to post their stories regarding their particular charitable Christmas gift. 

You may also include and post a picture (Christmas themes, whatever you wish that may complement it) with your report.  Please use a JPEG format.

Also, please try to keep your report and picture sized so that it will fit an 8 x 11 page that goes into the album.   Here you can find examples of last year's album entries.

The DEADLINE for the report submissions will be Sunday, December 14, 2008, at 12:00 midnight, EST.   We must have enough time to assemble the album and get it to Melinda on the 19th.

Rock on, Santas!   Santa Banana
« Last Edit: December 16, 2008, 03:05:31 pm by Vickster »


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« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2008, 08:56:51 pm »

Dear Melinda . .

The past couple of months have been a scary time for a lot of Americans and our international friends as well.  The stock market is down, people are losing their jobs and their homes.  Personally since I work for a big corporation, when the economy gets shaky, I get very nervous.  But then Christmas was coming, and a good friend of mine always said to me that when you are worried about money, you should go out and buy something or do something for someone less fortunate, so I did.   This year again, I am collaborating with my old pre-algebra and algebra teacher from 7th and 8th grade (my favorite teacher ever!!) to give needy children a special Christmas.   Every year she gets the childrens' information from an organization called Christmas is for Children  Each "angel" provides their social worker or caregiver a list of what they want, what they need and something educational.  This year we got 13 children ranging in ages up to about 13-14.

My contribution to the effort was new jeans with tops from Old Navy for 4 girls ages 6-10, some new sneakers.  I also bought board games, books, bubblebath and puzzles for boys and girls ages 4-9.  All of these children are located in New Jersey.  Each gift is new, wrapped and tagged and delivered to the children for Christmas.

I  hope you have wonderful Christmas, Melinda, and that you realize how you have inspired so many to be better people.  This now yearly tradition of compiling an album of charitable work only proves the goodness you have spread.  I love you.

Fondly, Donna/OS
« Last Edit: November 18, 2008, 04:13:01 pm by Vickster »


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« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2008, 01:34:44 pm »
Thanks, OS!  Great picture!  Rolling On Floor Laughing

Now I need more!   Santa Banana   

The December 14th deadline will be here before you know it. 

Let's continue the tradition of this yearly Christmas Album.  It was Melinda's favorite present from her Backups --- ever!

 Melinda on Top of the world
« Last Edit: November 19, 2008, 04:49:18 am by Vickster »


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« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2008, 07:43:51 pm »

Dear Melinda:

This 2008 Christmas season, as before in 2007, I am again adopting the same family from my community, whose unfortunate circumstances won't allow them to have a very happy holiday.

Once again, I am providing a gift certificate from the local supermarket for their Christmas dinner, and also a gift for each family member.

They were overjoyed and so grateful last Christmas, and it made me want to do this again.  It truly is more blessed to give than receive.

I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  And best wishes for your continued success and happiness!

Vicki (Vickster)
« Last Edit: December 02, 2008, 09:13:54 pm by Vickster »


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« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2008, 10:03:07 pm »

Every year for Christmas, I go to the Foster Home at lunchtime to celebrate with them there, and help with the activities. I also bring gifts to the ones whose families stopped visiting.  With my winnings at Bingo, I have already sent gift certificates to the local church and the Fire Department who have lists of the needy, so they can buy food or gifts for them at Christmas.  The day after Christmas I am going to the Childrens Hospital to celebrate with them, and bring them gifts.  At my Bingo hall they have machines where you can win stuffed animals or hats or all kinds of things, they are brand new.  So the people there gave me these to bring to the Childrens Hospital. I have 4 full garbage bags of stuffed animals.  I will be home Christmas night, and I am going to bring some gifts to people who I know can't afford to buy anything. My boss and I will cook 5 turkeys and will deliver them the same night. I love to see people light up with joy at Christmas.  It is the best gift I can have for myself -- seeing people happy!

Merry Christmas to you Melinda!

Louise (Weezzy)
« Last Edit: November 16, 2008, 05:58:19 am by Weezzy7 »


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« Reply #5 on: November 15, 2008, 10:57:32 pm »

This year I have experienced things I thought I would never have to face.  God has and continues to bless me in ways that I could never imagine.  I am so very grateful to Him.   Through all of the challenges, your music and The Backups have been my “happy place”.  Just another of the many things I thank God for every day.

This year in your honor I have donated to the Downtown Women’s Center in my hometown of Los Angeles, CA.   The mission of the Downtown Women’s Center is to provide permanent supportive housing and a safe and healthy community fostering dignity, respect, and personal stability, and to advocate ending homelessness for women. They are committed to providing the resources homeless women need to reconnect with their sense of self and reclaim goals and dreams that have become lost in their day-to-day struggle for survival.   Many of these women have children and this time of year is particularly difficult.

I wish you a Merry Christmas and an amazing New Year of favor, health, success, and happiness. Thanks for all you do to uplift and inspire.


« Last Edit: November 18, 2008, 10:12:12 pm by Vickster »
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« Reply #6 on: November 15, 2008, 11:26:34 pm »
NOTE:   I need a jpeg picture to go along with your Christmas reports.  Put it right above the report; look at the way I did mine.  Make sure the picture and report together fit on just one 8x11 sheet of paper    Thanks   Winner


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« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2008, 03:54:36 am »

Dear Melinda,
Last year I had the privilege of helping Lil Mindy and her family at Christmas.  It was a joy to know that someone so far away from where I live would have a joyful Christmas because three of us – Irma, Sally, and I – came together in the spirit of giving that is at the heart of Christmas.  This year, I wanted to help someone closer to home, someone in my own community.  So, I have chosen to make a donation in your honour to Vancouver's branch of Covenant House. 

Covenant House helps youth who have found themselves living on the streets.  With no judgement or blame, Covenant House offers these young people a helping hand.  That hand might hold a sandwich which feeds someone who has not had any food to eat that day; that hand might hold a blanket to keep them warm as winter's cold begins to set in; that hand might hold some much needed medicine for a youth who has become ill by living on the streets.  Most important of all, that hand holds out hope that they have not been abandoned by society.

When a youth reaches out and takes the hand offered, Covenant Street provides an array of services that get the youth off the street and back on track in their lives.  In most cases, these youths need medical care, housing, counselling, education, and even clean clothes.  What they need most, however, is what Covenant House offers in abundance: a safe haven away from the trauma of the lives that led them to live on the streets in the first place.

Safe havens cost money to maintain and Covenant House is constantly in need of financial support.  It was with the spirit of Christmas firmly in my heart that I made a donation to them in your honour.  I know that they will use the money well and pray that it helps even one youth to get off the streets for good.

Merry Christmas Melinda!  2008 has been quite a year for you and may 2009 bring even more blessings, joy and happiness to you (and a Grammy too!).

Mary Ann/Melrocks
« Last Edit: November 30, 2008, 06:59:30 pm by Melrocks »


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« Reply #8 on: November 16, 2008, 04:53:13 am »

Dear Melinda,

For many years I have done many projects for Christmas.  This year I am focusing on one that my youth group is doing together because of the expenses that we have.  It's called Angel Tree Ministries.  This project helps youth with their mom or dad in prison.  Our youth group is going out and putting our money all together and buying gifts for the teens/kids according to age.  If we don't have enough all put together, we take it out of our treasury.  We are sponsoring 10 kids this year.  All of the ten kids go to my school.  A lot of times, our group doesn't stop and think that there are people in are immediate area that are struggling, so we go for big cities.  But when we heard there were some kids that go to our school that had their mom, dad or both in prison, we all wanted to pitch in and help someone that may be our friend or just someone close!  We do several projects throughout the year, but it's always really special when you know you can help someone really close to your area.

Merry Christmas, Melinda.  I hope you have a wonderful Christmas filled with love and the Christmas-time spirit!  Happy New Year as well!  I hope the New year of 2009 will be even better then this one!

« Last Edit: November 16, 2008, 05:03:53 am by Vickster »
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« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2008, 06:09:19 am »
Melinda, once again Christmas is upon us. In searching my heart I have decided that this Christmas I will make a donation to a patient in need at The Florida Cancer Center. My husbands former Doctor was so good to Harry and I during his illness, at a certain point in treatments Dr. Montgomery stopped charging us.  I feel another patient also deserves to have a little comfort in knowing one less medical bill is needed to pay during such a difficult time.

Also, this year being in a new city I wanted to do something special. I will be donating to  a charity that has been close to my heart since June of 2003. Here in the Jacksonville, Florida area news anchor Donna Deegan, a 2 time survivor of breast cancer, created the Donna Foundation in June of 2003. The foundation helps women living with breast cancer in a supportive and financial way. Helping women go through the medical process without the financial worries.  Donna Deegan lovingly created this foundation out of the reality of WHAT DO WOMEN DO without insurance. I will be making a monthly donation to this cause on an on-going basis.  I call Donna a miracle and I must say why.  Every night I have watched Donna Deegan deliver the news--- during chemo, with a cold and through it all the smiles and joy in Donna's eyes tell me without a doubt that I am witnessing one of God's miracles every day!

Have a very Blessed Christmas Melinda.

Much Love, Sally
« Last Edit: November 17, 2008, 07:13:44 pm by Sally »


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« Reply #10 on: November 25, 2008, 04:14:24 am »

                                                                                 10 FEET TALL

Dearest Melinda,

Wow, I can't believe it is Christmas time already.  This year has flown by.   This year has brought many ups and downs, but I have found out through it all - that Friends and Family are the most important thing - besides the Good Lord, Himself

This Christmas will be different for me because of “Its better to give than it is to receive” from Nuncrackers.  I am pledging to myself to give more of myself to everything I get involved in.   I want to give more time serving, more love and hugs , more commitment, and just more of ME!   I love showing my love and support with gifts of love, so this year I will be giving toys not only to the Childrens Cancer Center here in Jackson, but to Sunnybrook Orphanage here in Ridgeland.   What child doesn’t deserve the best Christmas ever… and like the song…  the gift you get from giving will make you 10 feet tall…..

I am also making a special contribution to Malaria No More and to the Melinda Doolittle Scholarship. 

I want to give of more of myself to you and your career and to the Backups.  I am committed to help in any way I can.  I can't wait to see what God has in store. 

I wish you, and Mom, the best CHRISTmas ever…………..
I love you bunches,
Your Spunky


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« Reply #11 on: November 25, 2008, 04:56:08 am »

Dear Melinda,
One of the most important things that I have learned from you is "do it afraid". This year, that phrase has played a very important part of my life with my Christmas project. When I first signed up to take a Juvenile Delinquency and Child Abuse class, I had no idea the impact they would have on me. However, I immediatley took an interest in it, and my professor noticed. She asked if I would be interested in volunteering at the Kalamazoo Juvenile Delinquent Home, and I decided to take it on as my Christmas Project. I will admit I was petrified to volunteer there. I'm a very shy person as it is, and had no idea what to expect when I first walked into the home.  However, for  past several weeks have spent my Saturday or Sunday morning's at the Juvenile Home. It has been one of the most worthwhile experiences that I have ever had. These girls are so desperate for love and attention because of the lack of such that they get in their own homes that often they continue engaging in delinquent behavior just to go back to the juvenile home.  I plan on continuing to volunteer at the Juvenile Home for the remainder of my year at Western Michigan University, but during the holiday's I will be making an extra effort.  During my time there we have been working on letters to Santa as well as creating a Christmas Board Game that they can play during there free time. I will be having a Christmas party with them a few days before Christmas where I bring gifts for each girl and watch Christmas movies with them. In addition to volunteering at the Juvenile Home, I will be spending some time at the Michigan Commission for the Blind. Because of one of our dedicated Backups, Jena, I have learned an enormous amount about blindness and it's affect on people. Jena's story has impacted me so much and I am so encouraged by her dedication and compassion. I discovered a program for blind children held at a Kalamazoo library. During my finals week, I will be visiting the library and reading books to blind children. In addition, I am making coloring books specifically for them. These are made by using puffy paint to draw on the lines so that the kids can feel the lines and color in them. I'm really excited about this project!

Thank you for being such an inspiration and role model. You are truly a result of God's friendship! Merry Christmas!

Love, Megan Banana
« Last Edit: November 25, 2008, 05:09:20 am by mcaro05 »


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« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2008, 11:40:08 pm »

Dear Melinda,

I cannot believe that a year has passed since when I gave you my first Gift of Charity for Christmas. 

What I did in your name last year was a “first time” for me in the United States. I offered my free time to help people in need and volunteered for the Third Presbyterian Church during the Christmas holidays. I helped prepare and serve the Christmas meals for poor and homeless people of the city of Rochester. What you don’t know is that after that first experience I joined the team and never stopped serving with them! I have been cooking, serving food and washing dishes throughout the whole year and every time I thanked You and the Backups for having shown me how easy it is to make a difference.

As a Gift of Charity in your name for Christmas 2008, I will keep volunteering for the Third Presbyterian Church and I will also continue to contribute donations to the Melinda Doolittle Music Scholarship at Belmont University. I cannot wait to greet the first deserving student who will benefit of your scholarship! I know that compared to other charities directed to a greater amount of people this might seem not as important, but I know what it will mean to that student and I know how difficult for many of them it is to realize their dreams.

May this Christmas bless you with what your heart wish most, and the New Year open new horizons and fulfill your dreams.

Cristina (Chris-play, aka Geegles)


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« Reply #13 on: November 28, 2008, 08:07:05 pm »

Dear Melinda,

This year my family and I are supporting a charity that is close and dear to our hearts.  We are adopting 3 nursing homes in our city for Christmas.  Each Christmas, I organize the youth group in our parish church to spend time at these nursing homes -- sing carols, play card games, converse -- with the elderly residents.  There is a burdensome loneliness and a hunger for companionship among these elderly people who cannot spend the holidays with their families.  Every weekend until Christmas, we will be serving lunch to the residents and on Christmas Eve, we will be having a Christmas program and dinner with them.  It gives the youth in our parish a chance to spread some joy and give comfort to some of the loneliest people in our community.

I pray that you you will have a blessed Christmas with your family and friends and that the new year will bring you even more blessings.  Thank you for all that you inspire in us!


« Last Edit: December 16, 2008, 03:34:48 am by ghopper »
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« Reply #14 on: November 30, 2008, 12:56:59 pm »

Dear Melinda

Christmas in the UK seems to be very much like your Thanksgiving.  It is of course a family get together, but also an opportunity to have a large sit-down meal based around a roast turkey for the main course and christmas pudding to follow (  As is normal, I have the enormous pleasure of bringing my family together and acting as host.  This year, we will also be hosting my ageing Parents-in-law, and one of my younger brothers and his family too.

The sad thing is that there are many many people who just do not have a family with whom they can spend Christmas day.  So my gift to you this year is to provide, through a donation to out local branch of the Salvation Army, an opportunity for five individuals who would not otherwise have had anyone to turn to, to spend it together and to have a meal of our traditional fare on Christmas day.

Thank you for what you have inspired within us

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year