Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Concert Success!

After all my moaning and groaning about all the work and stress involved in the Children for Children concert and all my worries about whether I was stressing other families out asking them to participate in a fundraiser this year when they're already strapped financially, our concert on Monday night turned out to be the best ever.

Ashton started things off and did a great job explaining the purpose of the concert - that kid is good on his feet. Then we watched a beautiful music video that fit the evening perfectly - all about making room for the Savior at Christmas and doing all we can to serve others (thanks for sending me this video, Jo! Click here if you want to watch it). We had lots of cute kids share their talents (everything from singing Silent Night with sign language to doing lip synchs to playing chimes). The Nativity play at the end turned out to be quite lovely. The kids remembered their lines and did everything on cue plus our neighbor kindly allowed her newborn baby girl to star as Baby Jesus and having a real baby made it extra special for the kids and the audience.

I love how the kids are so focused on Baby Jesus in this one

While the kids went and enjoyed their refreshments at the end, we showed videos of the orphans in Bulgaria and photos of the kids in India and Africa to everyone who hadn't had a chance to see this stuff at the kids' rehearsal the night before. There weren't a lot of dry eyes. What beautiful little children who need so much!

Anyway, there was such a feeling of caring and sharing in our home. What a beautiful evening.

When everyone left, the kids were really excited to unwrap the donation box and see how much money they got for their "friends" in Bulgaria and India and Africa. I told the kids we probably wouldn't get that much this year since most of the people we know are having hard times - but even a couple hundred dollars would be good (especially since it would be matched by the Eyrealm Foundation so anything we raised would be doubled).

But as we pulled out lots of $20 bills, we started getting excited. Maybe we'd have a pretty sizeable donation after all! Then Ashton pulled out some checks - one for $50 - yeah! Then one for $150 - wow! Then wait, hold everything, no way - one for $1000! We all had to read the check several times to make sure we'd read it right. Yep. $1000. The kids' eyes were huge and round and sparkly and we just sat there in silence for a second. No way. We raised almost $1500 this year!!!

There was pure glee in the air as we talked about all the warm blankets and good food this money would buy for the orphans and all the wells we could build for the kids in Mozambique and all the great stuff my sister Charity would be able to do for the leper children in India with this money when she goes there next month. The kids had to call Charity right away and tell her how much money we got for India (and she jumped up and down and squealed with glee, much to the kids' enjoyment). They had to call Grammie and Grandfather (my parents) who made up the idea for this Children for Children concert back when I was a kid. They had to call my sister Shawni and her kids who were doing a Children for Children concert the same night and see how their concert went. (It went very well - click here if you want to check it out.)

I wish the wonderful people who put in the $1000 could have been there to see the excitement and joy they provided to my family on Monday night. And I wish all the kids and donors could see the wonderful things that this money will do for children in such destitute conditions. After our donation is doubled, we'll be able to give $1000 to each of our three causes. And I was hoping for maybe $100 per cause this year...

OK, OK, I got the message, this is worthwhile. This is the highlight of our Christmas. I'm not going to complain about doing this concert ever again. There's nothing in the world like seeing your kids genuinely rejoice about something that someone else is getting. There's nothing like really making room for the Savior at Christmas.


Allyson said...

Okay, I am totally inspired by this! We have a few of our own traditions for giving to worthy causes, but I'm really liking this idea - pretty sure I'm going to steal it from here on out! I like the sense of community coming together, the potential to raise much more money than we could on our own, the sharing of talents, and a chance for the kids to really be "in charge" of something. It's brilliant! Thanks! (And congrats!)

Eyrealm said...

Gosh I can hardly see to write through the tears! Congrats you guys! This is so amazing!

Charity Jade Eyre said...


Anita and Tal said...

Sounds like a great success Saren and Jared! Nice work and thanks to all for the support to Care For Life in Mozambique!

Anonymous said...

Hi, Saren! I've been sending Christmas cards to your old address; the most recent one I have for you is San Jose. Glad I found you online! If you'll send me your current address, I'll pop a Christmas letter in the mail for you. It's great to see what you're up to.

Amy (Giauque) Chamberlain

shawni said...

I'm so glad it went so great, Sar. I love the pictures...


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