HP has given 50 bloggers over $6,000 worth of computer equipment each to give to one lucky entrant. No one needs this amount of equipment. This huge prize could benefit so many different people. Just think of the smiles on each recipient’s face as they give part of their prize away to another person. Paying it forward — is the right thing to do in life and in these trying economic times.
So, http://www.living-intheory.com/ has asked what I am doing to impact the lives of others. Well, I am not doing something visible like saving whales. However, in my small way I impact the lives of many. Let me explain what I do…
1. I am a mom — plain and simple. I chose over 12 years ago to stay at home with my children (Crafty Daughter, 12; Sporty Daughter, 10, and Adventure Boy, 5). For the first 6 years I worked as a freelance editor for a publishing company while staying home with my children. The editing work was hard especially as I had very little childcare. Finding the time and energy to work all while raising two then three children became too much for my family, so I quit my freelance work. For the last 6 years I have been a SAHM. I have sacrificed a career in order to help my children become good citizens of this country. Many wonder why I do this, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
2. Once I stopped working I immediately looked in to volunteering opportunities. By volunteering at moms groups, my children’s schools, the PTA, and church, I am letting my children know that I am an active participant in their education. I am also providing services that would not otherwise be completed since full-time staff at the school and church are overtaxed with assignments. I am making a difference in the lives of children and adults by volunteering.
Over the last 6 years I have:
– volunteered at my children’s elementary school as a Read-to-Me parent for Kindergarten (3 years), 1st grade (2 years), 2nd grade (2 years), and 3rd grade (3 years). Volunteered as coach for the 5th grade Congressional Hearings (1 year). Helped out the art teacher once a week (1 year).
– volunteered as a parent helper or reader in my children’s preschools (6 years).
– chaired a PTA committee for recognizing children who completed a summer workbook or participated in the library reading program (3 years).
– chaired a PTA committee for encouraging children to submit artwork, dances, photographs, and writing assignments to a national PTA competition (4 years).
– participated as the parent member on the Elementary School Improvement Team ( 2 years).
– chaired the publications committee for my church’s building fundraiser (wrote ad copy, designed and typeset program, created signs for event) (2 years).
– coordinated the music and storytime unit for my local moms club (1 year).
– volunteered at the church nursery one Sunday every two months (1 year).
3. I regularly donate clothing, food, and household items to organizations for people in need.
4. My family help an elderly neighbor with taking out her trash cans/recycling each week.
5. I am a member of the National Marrow Donor Registry. I have not donated bone marrow, but will gladly donate if called upon to do so. I joined the registry following the leukemia diagnosis, treatment, relapse, and subsequent bone marrow transplant of two friends, including a boy my daughter went to preschool with.
Now, to decide what I would do with all the items in the HP Magic Giveaway… I would keep the Touchsmart and one Notebook computer for my family. My middle school daughter is required to use the computer for homework assignments. Next year I will have another child in middle school. Having an extra computer for the children to use would be helpful since I doing some freelance writing and my husband needs the computer to do his work, as well.
I would give the Mini to my son’s old preschool. His preschool is church run with a limited budget. The director has a computer, but all the teachers and assistants must use one other computer. The staff print up calendars, assignments for the children, and newsletters for parents, so the printer and software would be helpful, too.
As for the remaining Notebook, I would contact the guidance counselor at my local high school, to find out the name of a deserving college-bound student. A computer could help a needy student complete assignments.
I would give the Mediasmart computer, Kung Fu Panda DVD, and the software to a shelter for battered women in Frederick, MD. Perhaps the women could use the computer to reenter the workforce. The kids would enjoy the DVD.
It felt good to write down what I would do Robin Hood style. Even if I don’t win I will continue my volunteering and philanthropic activities.