Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Toys For Tots

(if the following is a bit confusing, Read This First)

Although I had wanted to donate toys here locally on the beach, I didn't find out for sure that we had won the $250 gift card until December 15, which was too late to donate here. So, instead, we planned a trip to ToysRUs in NJ, which actually turned out to be better anyway because they were having a huge sale AND there is a TFT drop-off inside the store.

Because this really is your (my readers) gift to the kids (all I did was ask you to vote), we thought we'd shoot a little video so that you could feel like you were a part of the fun...we tried to stick mostly to fun, low priced items that we on sale to stretch the money out to benefit as many kids as possible, and we made sure to hit both genders and every age.

Thanks again to everyone (683 of you) who voted for us and helped make this Christmas extra special for several South Jersey children.

BTW, it's not too late, in many areas, to donate to this great charity. I was told by the cashier at the store that donations are way down this year. And, I've even read a few stories about TFT experiencing more theft than normal this year, people actually breaking in and stealing from their distribution centers....what kind of Grinch would do that?

Please, Click Here if you would like to learn more about Toys for Tots!




Kerry said...

We just made a donation to TFT as well. My Husband was a Marine. So its a annual thing for us to do.
Nice that you decided to use the money to help the Kids.
Thanks for sharing the video. Tricia looks great and Baby G is really growing..Love that smile!!
Merry Christmas

Mrs. Dan said...

Thanks for letting us ride along on your shopping trip. Trish, you look as smashing as ever, and Miss G is really growing up! Oh yeah, and we like you too Nate. ;)

Laurie in Ca. said...

How fun to go shopping with you guys. Gwyneth is so animated with her cute expressions and wanting to talk!!! Love this girl. And Trish, you are looking so healthy girl, and I pray you keep getting better and better. Have a most wonderful Christmas you guys. Oh, and Nate, you are looking good too. Don't want to leave you out!! Hope you will be movin on up to that new and beautiful house soon.

Love and Blessings, Laurie

Amy E. said...

Job well done!!

-stephanie- said...

Thank you for shopping with my vote. That was an awesome haul. I pray God's special blessing over the children who receive these toys.

It is so sweet to hear Miss Gwyneth babble.

Kristen said...

Awsome!!! Thanks for sharing!
I was thinking when watching that how big miss G is and wow...she's almost a year old!!

Ashley said...

So fun! I'm glad y'all did something so awesome with your winnings!

Erin said...

AWESOME JOB SPREADING out 250.00!!!!!! Way to go!!!!

Tricia said...

That looked like fun! I can't wait until Jeremy and I can do this some day. I would love to take our little 3 year old to experience this amazing gift giving instead of getting. Thanks for the inspiration!

Tricia :)

Marianne said...

Funny..you bash our Eagles and then eat our Cheesesteaks.....you need to pick a side and stick with it. If you want our cheesesteaks you have to be a birds fan. PERIOD! Besides...if the Bears lose, we beat Dallas, Tampa forgets their playing, it snows in Africia, the Pope visits us on New Years and it rains money we could get a playoff spot and then Nate who would be bashing us when we win the Superbowl......don't have an answer do you? Happy Holidays! Enjoy your Miracle...both of them :)

Missy said...

Great way to "pay it forward!" Thanks for using the blog award for such a great cause!

Looks like you got some great deals, too! Quite the haul!

Gwyneth looks adorable and Tricia's (always looking incredible) voice sounded really good! We continue to pray for you all!

Thank you so much for sharing your faith and your story and enriching our lives this 2008.


DogsDontPurr said...

Looks like you guys rocked that amount of money....you got tons of stuff! Wow! Good goin'....and God bless your generosity!

Sonia said...

Thanks for donating to such a wonderful cause. You did a really great job getting so many things with that amount of money! God Bless!

Susie said...

Wow! You guys did great! I hope I am lucky enough someday to be able to donate more than a couple of toys to some needy children. I am most impressed with the shopping cart full!

Shari said...

Thanks for taking us along on the shopping trip. This is what the season is all about--giving, not receiving!!

Merry Christmas to all--Jesus Christ is born!!

Shari NC

Jamie said...

Thanks for the video. You are an amazing, inspiring family!! Wishing you a Merry Christmas and safe, healthy, and less exciting New Year!

Anonymous said...

Wow, that was awesome! It was great to see the whole family got to have some fun while benefitting Toys for tots. I also liked the cashier's part (I think?) at the end of the video. Merry Christmas Gwyneth, Nate, and Tricia!!

Tammy C said...

Nice video.Gwyneth sure let you know that she was done shopping by fixing her hair and laughing.Glad that you were able to helpTFT.We gave through our Boy Scout troop .

Kim said...

I just wanted to wish you all a very Merry Christmas. I am so glad that you all have each other. I'll continue to pray for your family's health. God bless you all.
~Kim in Ohio

Momof2bz said...

Hi! You guys were at our Toys R Us! Thank you for the donation to this area. There are alot of kids in the South Jersey area that will really benefit. We've made our donations. Thanks for always thinking of others & being such good examples. My kids watched this video & loved seeing Gwyneth. I am teaching them to always give what you can & this was great for them to see.

~j~ said...

That is awesome Nate! So glad you all had the opportunity to do that!
Merry Christmas!!

Carol said...

Very cool. Thanks for the video. Loved seeing you all and hearing you all. Can't get enough of all that cuteness. Merry Christmas.

Christy said...

So awesome to see!! My favorite part of Christmas so far was angel tree shopping for the less fortunate kids in the area. Giving to those who don't have much really does bring out the Christmas spirit.
You guys rock for doing this!!

Tricia's voice sounds better than it did when I saw you guys at Duke. Does this mean she isn't going to have to have the surgery to her voice box?? I hope so!!! Gwyneth has the cutest expressions.

On another note.. I'll be thinking about you guys as you move into your house. What an exciting Christmas for your family!! You are blessed and highly favored.. as we all are.

Merry Christmas Nate, Tricia and Gwyneth!!!!!

Little Miss Sunshine State said...

Love Miss G's red sweater and Tricia's sweet voice.

Your beautiful little family and your big hearts make me believe in miracles and all that is good and kind.

Merry Christmas and continued prayers from Florida.

Blessings From Above said...

What a wonderful thing to do. And it looks like you had fun as well. It really is more fun to give than to receive.

Merry Christmas

Judy said...


Quin's momma said...

If this lifts your heart any- Every year there is a Toy Run that the Harley/motorcycle riders do here in Tulsa. (I used to go every year with my dad. Since he passed away two years ago, I have actually cried because I couldn't go.) Anyhow, this year participation was up something like 20% and almost every rider brought more than one toy. I tell you, it's amazing and heartwarming to walk into the donation site and see a HUGE pile of toys. The mound is about 9-10 feet tall! How wonderful to think of all the kids who will benefit!

sarasusen said...

That's so cool! Thanks for sharing that video. I know many kids will be blessed by your purchases :-) I love the little tuft of hair on top of Gwenny's head. She was looking a little wiped at the end. Fighting the sleep! Why do babies do that anyway?

RoseGirl said...

That was really cool - thanks for having us as a part of that!

Merry Christmas to you all - can't wait to see video of the house when you are all settled in!


Southern CA

DeAnne said...

I was caught so off gurard by the video. I've been a faithful reader of your blog for almost a year now, and have laughed and cried and prayed and praised. I've seen Miss G growing steadily, and today as I was watching her I started misting... crying... bawling. The miracles that I've seen God perform in your lives is tremendous, but seeing that little darling of yours in conversation with you is nothing short of spectacular. AWESOME! It just makes me stand in awe at our Creator. And it strengthens my faith. Thanks for blogging. Merry Christmas! God Bless each of you in the New Year.

bunkobeth said...

Oops - tried to post and it is now somewhere in Cyberland!

First of all, Merry Christmas to you, Trisha, and Gwenyth!

I wanted to pass along to all the readers that Coca Cola will let you donate your Coke points to TFT!
Just save your bottle caps, enter the code, and when you have enough points, you can donate them to TFT. I don't know if this will be year round, but thought it was a great way to help out in addition to donating toys!

I hope you have a most Fantastic Christmas!

TheRagan3 said...

Fabulous job guys! I know that the kids they go to will be thrilled this Christmas! And what a BIG girl that sweet Gwyneth is!! Oh my head! She's nearly one right??
God Bless you guys!
Merry Christmas!!

Julie said...

That's so awesome! Thanks for sharing your adventure with us.

Gwyneth looked like she was about ready to crash there at the end...you two wore her right out!

BS said...

Awesome !! Thanks so much.

Tricia said...

Wow, that is so fabulous! How great that you were able to maximize the $$ for donation that way. I saw a Razr scooter - awesome! Any LEGO sets in there? :^)

Twinkletoes said...

That is so awesome! Thanks for sharing! You three are so giving! The world needs more people like you (three)!
And Gwyneth - what an adorable little chatterbox!
Merry Christmas!

Lisa said...

I used to donate a lot of toys to Toys for Tots through a high school organization I was in before college..I should get back into that, even if it is just a little bit now!!
Did I catch the name "Gwynie" that is cute!
Can we request more video of this mobile little girl of yours when you have the time?

Unknown said...

I didn't know about voting, but glad you won. My husband is a Marine. Great organization! Thank you sooo much!

Mary said...

How fun. That is just awesome you guys. ...And Gywneth is too cute with her smiles and cooing. Still praying for you Tricia. Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!


Elizabeth said...

How wonderful! It was such a great thing to do and I really enjoyed seeing your family give in such a wonderful way! Merry Christmas!

fuzzandfuzzlet said...

The mystery toy that you said looks fun is a Fly Wheel and it is indeed fun. Great gift idea, it will cover a wide range of ages.

Q's NEWS said...

How cool for you to take your winning gift card and spend it on Christmas presents for Toys For Tots. What a selfless thing to do and just think of the childrens faces when they opened up their wonderful toys. Most people would have spent it on their new house or on themself in some way - you guys always amaze me with your thoughtfulness and caring for others!

I hope you have a great week with your extended family. Gwyneth's pictures and her cameo in the video are spectacular!!! I can't believe how much things have changed since this time last year. I bet there is going to be a huge birthday celebration for a special 1 year old next month!!!

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

Unknown said...

I have been following your blog for a while and just had to say what a nice way to give back. God bless you all and you are in our prayers here in Michigan--
Go Bears-prof
Go Blue-college