Archive for February, 2011

Sheep!

I blog to get people to donate to kid’s charities. I don’t want money, I want you to donate direct to a children’s charity then write to me by commenting on the blog. Please read the ‘About Lesley’ section of the blog to find out why I do this; the Comments and Running Totals pages to see how far we have come….

Yes, your eyes do not decieve you. I am blogging today about sheep. It is my own fault, there is no-one else to blame. Well….., perhaps I will blame @DottyComical from Twitter. I asked last night for a new blog-topic and Dotty was the first reply with ‘sheep’. Oh dearie me, perhaps I will think before I ask Twitter next time:)

When starting a new post I always give it a little google. Did you know that you will get over 67 million results if you google the word sheep? I didn’t check all of them, in fact I really don’t want to imagine what content some of them contain, the beauty and beastliness of the internet? However, I was able to find out quite a lot about sheep from the comfort of my sofa, my kind of research!

I now know quite a few facts about sheep. They are milked for speciality cheeses and some would recommend that you drink a glass of warm sheep’s milk for a really good sleep. Sorry, that is not for me, warm milk of any kind makes me feel nauseous. We all know that you get wool from sheep; as a knitter I do like that. I will not add pictures of sheep to this post but will provide evidence that I can and do knit…

Of course, I could give you all manner of facts about sheep but this is a blog for children’s charities. Therefore, I need to get a connection to make this a ‘proper’ blogpost for here. The lovely @Toy_Tory, another Twitter culprit, will get the credit for the direction we now take. Children love animals, fact. They want to see, touch and play with animals. Many of you will have pets; I think children benefit from having a dog, cat, gerbil, goldfish to have and take care of. It is a good thing to have responsibility for a pet when you are very young. Unconditional love from a pet is a very powerful force in a young child’s life. However, it isn’t possible for all children to have pets.

My suggestion? Take your children to see animals. They say that there are children who don’t understand livestock, farming and food sourcing, they think it all comes from supermarkets. This worries me, children need to understand how this earth works; how we feed and clothe ourselves so that they can make decisions about how they live when they are older. One way to introduce the subject of agriculture, food production and animal welfare is to take your children to petting farms. Your child will get close to the animals and will absorb lots of information on food and farming; fun is the best way to learn.

I will include a link to one lovely charity, the Amelia Trust Farm – http://www.ameliatrust.org.uk/. The Amelia Trust Farm is a working farm and a charity working with children and teenagers who may struggle with traditional learning methods. They do not receive central funding but hope to get donations from visitors to keep their work going. Please check out the website and if you are nearby I would encourage you to visit with your children for both a fun day and a way to help others, what could be better?

I do want to share few other sheep-links:-

Sheep Racing – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7DZmgADlW5c

If you fancy testing your reactions try this – http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/humanbody/sleep/sheep/reaction_version5.swf

I always loved Shaun the Sheep and the games are suitable for children – http://www.shaunthesheep.com/

I close with my normal request to you:-

  • Donate to a valid children’s charity of your choice. It is easy to do – online, collection boxes, Give as You Earn. Any amount is important and I am delighted for one pound, dollar, euro, yen to reach a charity. Donate a present to a family or child that will not have the holiday season that you might expect and plan for.
  • Visit this blog and comment anywhere with the charity, amount including currency and please also tell me what you wanted to be when you were 8. I love the stories of childish ambitions.

I will then:-

  • Add your donation to the Totals page on this blog, totals are updated weekly.
  • I will also write some words about the current donations and the charity
  • All comments will be stored on the comments page so that you can see what charities people are interested in and also what a variety of 8-year-old ambitions we have already. I am looking forward to way more surprises from you all.

The steps are simple. Again, if you like the idea please tell others so that they will come and tell me their stories.

Take care of you and yours.

Lesley

February 20, 2011 at 10:14 pm Leave a comment

Valentines Day? Purrrlease!

I blog to get people to donate to kid’s charities. I don’t want money, I want you to donate direct to a children’s charity then write to me by commenting on the blog. Please read the ‘About Lesley’ section of the blog to find out why I do this; the Comments and Running Totals pages to see how far we have come….

It is Valentine’s Day. All around you will be images of love, people carrying flowers and those poor souls who expected romance and were left disappointed.

I will let you into a secret. I don’t get Valentine’s Day. If someone loves you wouldn’t they tell you every day? Why would they have to demonstrate their affection by spending too much money on a sickly card and an over-priced bunch of roses. I may not strike too many people as the cynical sort but I see this day with a very cold eye. I know florists and card manufacturers rely on days like today for a big lift in their business, that is the only view I have of today.

For those who think I am a complete softie I will destroy those illusions by admitting that I feel the same about Mother’s Day – did you see that coming? Don’t get me wrong, I always loved Mother’s Day when my children were little. Those Sunday mornings when I received a tray of cereal, toast and tea along with a card made in school were wonderful. I adored that my children wanted to spoil their mum. I always ate the breakfast and was careful not to spill all the tea and cereal that covered the tray from the perilous journey up the stairs in the hands of a young child. The cards were the best. You will feel amazing when you receive card made by your child that says you are the best Mum in the world. It doesn’t matter that you don’t deserve the title, what is important is that your children think that:)

I don’t think I am the only one who thinks like this? Are there more of you out there? Say no to cards that cost too much and are discarded after one day. If someone wants to buy flowers then why not buy them on a ‘random’ day when the surprise will mean so much more. I say ‘NO’ to over-priced and over-schmaltzy sentimentality. Will you join me?

Wouldn’t you rather have this picked from your garden…….

….. than this on just one day?

I know which I would prefer:)

I close with my normal request to you:-

  • Donate to a valid children’s charity of your choice. It is easy to do – online, collection boxes, Give as You Earn. Any amount is important and I am delighted for one pound, dollar, euro, yen to reach a charity. Donate a present to a family or child that will not have the holiday season that you might expect and plan for.
  • Visit this blog and comment anywhere with the charity, amount including currency and please also tell me what you wanted to be when you were 8. I love the stories of childish ambitions.

I will then:-

  • Add your donation to the Totals page on this blog, totals are updated weekly.
  • I will also write some words about the current donations and the charity
  • All comments will be stored on the comments page so that you can see what charities people are interested in and also what a variety of 8-year-old ambitions we have already. I am looking forward to way more surprises from you all.

The steps are simple. Again, if you like the idea please tell others so that they will come and tell me their stories.

Take care of you and yours.

Lesley

February 14, 2011 at 9:51 pm 2 comments

Just the Facts Ma’am

I blog to get people to donate to kid’s charities. I don’t want money, I want you to donate direct to a children’s charity then write to me by commenting on the blog. Please read the ‘About Lesley’ section of the blog to find out why I do this; the Comments and Running Totals pages to see how far we have come….

I have been blogging for 10 months now. Every now and then I like to question myself about my motives for doing this blog. It is fairly obvious that I don’t want money but I do want you to give a little of your cash away. I don’t do it for publicity, what would I want that for? I don’t want an alternate career, I am busy enough with the one I have. When I ask myself why I come up with the only reason, children. In the world today children are harmed by others, they are ill, they haven’t enough food, clean water can be nigh-impossible to find, there are wars and diseases that will stop children growing and thriving with happiness and joy in their lives. I think this is reason enough but I thought today I would share a few statistics with you. This is harsh, I know this but sometimes we have to look harsh in the eye, don’t we?

This is a sample of the statistics you can find relating to children, please take a look and perhaps you will understand:-

  • It is estimated that 2.5 million children were living with Aids in 2009 with 260,000 child-deaths from Aids and 370,000 new cases diagnosed in the same year. The trend doesn’t look good does it?
  • Under and malnutrition. It is estimated that one third of deaths of children under 5 years old is under-nutrition. Use your imagination for a moment; how must it feel to be small and hungry all the time when you are too young to understand all the reasons. You just know you are hungry and miserable all the time. It sounds condescending for me to say that this upsets me but it does.
  • Poor water and sanitation – it is estimated that there are 4 billion cases of diarrhoea per year causing 2.2 million deaths, mostly among children under five. There are also figures available for the impacts of intestinal worms, trachoma, schistosomiasis and other diseases such as cholera.
  • There is an estimate that in the last decade 10 million children may have been traumatised by war. Have you ever been truly scared? Most of us only live with fleeting moments of fear, why don’t you take one minute and imagine living with constant fear. The damage that causes makes my head spin. Why is this world so consumed by hate and war? What real purpose does it serve? Yes, I know the arguments that war can be justified for the greater good. I understand why wars can start to save people but have you seen any short-lived wars in modern times? Children can be collateral, cruelty a by-product. I do not claim to have any answers here but I do challenge Governments to think in terms of people and not regimes or land when they decide the right thing to do is ‘save’ a country.
  • I did some research on recorded crime statistics available from the UK Home Office. Between 2002 and 2009 there were over 37 thousand cases of cruelty to and neglect of children, 271 cases of abandonment of a child under 2 and over 5,500 reported cases of child abduction. These are the reported figures only. A spreadsheet is only numbers, it doesn’t talk about the impact to children and their families. I don’t want to imagine what actually happened, I am too cowardly but those are big numbers.

I hope this gives you some insight into why I do what I do.

I close with my normal request to you:-

  • Donate to a valid children’s charity of your choice. It is easy to do – online, collection boxes, Give as You Earn. Any amount is important and I am delighted for one pound, dollar, euro, yen to reach a charity. Donate a present to a family or child that will not have the holiday season that you might expect and plan for.
  • Visit this blog and comment anywhere with the charity, amount including currency and please also tell me what you wanted to be when you were 8. I love the stories of childish ambitions.

I will then:-

  • Add your donation to the Totals page on this blog, totals are updated weekly.
  • I will also write some words about the current donations and the charity
  • All comments will be stored on the comments page so that you can see what charities people are interested in and also what a variety of 8-year-old ambitions we have already. I am looking forward to way more surprises from you all.

The steps are simple. Again, if you like the idea please tell others so that they will come and tell me their stories.

Take care of you and yours.

Lesley

February 12, 2011 at 11:42 am 1 comment


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