Nov 082012
 

So, the election has come and gone and some of us are thrilled and others are angry and the fact remains:

Our job as citizens has not changed. Not one iota. Our jobs are to take care of ourselves, our families, and our neighbors.

So that’s good. Makes things less confusing.

ENTER THE MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE MOMASTERY YEAR.

IT’S HOOOOOOOOOLLLLLIIIIDAAAAY HANDS TIME!!!!!!!!!!

The concept of Holiday hands is simple. It is this: This holiday, I would rather my kids have three presents and your kids have three presents than my kids have six presents and yours have none.

That’s all.

The concept of Holiday Hands is SMALL. This is not a Love Flash Mob. We will not be building homes or paying off medical bills or purchasing vehicles. We will be buying a helmet for a stranger’s son. We will be sending some trendy leg warmers to a preteen who’s mama doesn’t have STYLE in the budget this year. We might be providing a holiday meal for a family who wouldn’t have been able to fill every belly at the table otherwise. We might be covering Christmas or Hanukkah gifts for Sandy families so they can focus on rebuilding. These sorts of things. Small things with great love. THAT IS WHAT WE ARE ABOUT HERE. SMALL things. We can each give or accept something small from a stranger this holiday season.  From a fellow citizen. We can prove to each other that LOVE WINS.

And so, EVERYONE IS INVITED TO PARTICIPATE IN HOLIDAY HANDS THIS YEAR. EVERY. ONE. People with not enough. People with extra. People with just enough.  EVERYBODY’S IN, BABY. And we take care of each other NOW. So that we can rest in the miracles during the holiday season. So there’s no worries. It’s all done by Thanksgiving, so we can be extra thankful.

Monks- you are going to freak when you see the amazing technology that the Monkee See- Monkee Do board has gathered to carry us through Holiday Hands this year. Last year there were 1400 of you and one me matching Monkee Families on paper towels and Chase’s homework and sticky notes and crying and trying to breathe and LEARN EXCEL for fourteen days straight. It was the worst/best two weeks of my year. THIS year there are almost FORTY NINE THOUSAND of you and SIX of us. Me, Sister, Amy, Lou, Liz, and Allison. . . your Monkee See- Monkee Do Board. We work for free, sometimes round the clock, because we believe in Monkeedom. We believe in YOU- We believe in our bottom to top, one hand to another, upside down and inside out Reloveution.

A few things to remember as you travel to the next page.

First, please read and reread and rereread the instructions and watch and rewatch the tutorials before emailing questions to us. Again – 48k of you. 6 of us. And one of us is going to be at the pool soon. Ahem.

Second – there will be a board member monitoring requests around the clock –so you may receive a follow up question or two about your specific request. If the question isn’t answered, we’ll have to remove the request.

Third – IMPORTANT: Please do not send any gift until the requester has PUBLICLY matched him or herself with you on the site. This will avoid accidentally doubling and tripling up on matches.

Fourth- MOST IMPORTANT: Be patient with us. Show grace. I’m not sure anyone has ever attempted a project like this on this scale and there will be snags. We will work them out with time. We promise that we will be consistently doing the absolute best we can.

Fifth- If you’d prefer to donate directly to Monkee See- Monkee Do instead of becoming matched with a family, please feel free to do that. Every penny we get from you goes straight to mamas and dads in need. We are a charity with NO OVERHEAD. This is unusual. A miracle, really. Made possible by those two unbeatable teammates – faith and SWEAT.

WE BELONG TO EACH OTHER. To join in our holiday hands miracle, start here.

Love,

Amy, Sister, Lou, Allison, Liz, G, and TWMF

PS. If any Monks have stories to share about how Holiday Hands touched your family as givers or receivers last year, please take a moment to share your story in the comments. Love.

*****REMINDER!

HOLIDAY HANDS MONKS…VERY IMPORTANT!!!!
1. Reminder to Receivers: When you update that your need has been taken, also list the giver’s first name and last initial, or else that person will not know they have been matched with you.
Reminder to Givers: Do not send your gift until you see your first name and last initial in the receiver’s post, even if the receiver emails you to confirm a match.

2. Putting together an opportunity through holiday hands to give directly to Sandy families who can’t post. Apparently, as several graceful monkees have taught me, posting requires electricity. We’re ON IT. Stay tuned.

 

 



Carry On, Warrior
Author of the New York Times Bestselling Memoir CARRY ON, WARRIOR
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  147 Responses to “HOOLLLIIIIIDAAAAAY HAAANNDDSSSS!!!!!!!!!”

  1. I posted in the needs section and got a response that I might be considered for some gift cards, but I am not sure how to respond to that notification and let those powers that be that this help would be awesome! Any ideas??? It says on the site something about getting an email showing my listing number, but I never got one of those…Ideas? A phone number to talk to someone??? – Josh (hoping)

  2. I’m sorry to ask such a basic question, and apologize if I’ve overlooked it…… but where exactly do we send our gifts if we’ve ‘taken’ one of the helping hands requests? Looking for a physical address to send gifts and a deadline if applicable.

    This is my first year participating – very excited to do so!

  3. I also was wondering when helping hands start. We are struggling tremendously being a military family with 2 surgeries coming up and having to provide for our three kids. I have a ton of children’s clothes, shoes, and items I would also like to pass on for people who are stuck in a rut! Thank you!

    • Hi Tammy,

      My husband and I would like to help make your holiday easier on you for your children, if you wish us to. We certainly understand being in the military is like, not to mention the upcoming surgeries. Wish the best for them! Contact me if you wish and we can figure out how we can help during the holiday for your children.

      Becky

    • Sorry Christin…I got your name mixed up with another response on here :)

  4. hi my name is tammy and was just wondering if someone could point me in the right direction,im having trouble contacting them threw email.Thank you for any help

  5. I would love to participate for 2013 but have not heard if there will be a Holiday hands this year. Any news??

  6. I went over this web site and I conceive you have a lot of great info, saved to my bookmarks (:.

  7. I might personally favor Google. Both FB and Google would benefit from it, but we would most likely benefit more from Google taking it over. In the case of Google+ it is just a matter of time. Facebook was lucky it didn’t definitely must compete with something as “good” as facebook, the competition was just lacking a lot of features and also a global approach.Google+ is exceptional to Facebook, but it really has a bigger challenge to receive popular.Just check out VHS and Betamax. Betamax was better but lost due to bad marketing/licensing.Danny recently posted..Black & Decker NPP2018 18-Volt Cordless Electric Pole Chain Saw

  8. […] that can mobilize behind an act (sometimes for good, sometimes not). Take Momastery’s Holiday Hands (which I just learned about for the first time last night). What an amazing community. What […]

  9. I had a post ready to go when this was still open but chickened out. I reasoned we’d be okay without it. Now it’s closed and we could really use the help. Darn pride! Bless you for this beautiful outpouring and for all involved. Makes me smile big. :)

  10. how did i not see this? oh well next year i will join!!!

  11. I just love Holiday Hands. Last year it brought me together with a good friend of yours and we met a beautiful Monkee named Marley. Marley’s sister was very ill, and with mounting medical bills, she was not able to shop for her amazing teenagers Harrison and Maddie. We plotted and schemed and sent the kids gift cards. It was something so small for us, yet I know it meant so much to them. Marley’s sister recently lost her husband suddenly. Your incredible Monkee network is going to be making a memory book for the family honoring a beautiful life that was cut way too short.

    This year I am planning to do this again and have also found another family to send Christmas to. It honestly is the best feeling ever.

  12. Helping Hands is closed to new listings, and if this doesn’t work I will find another way to donate, but…

    Who needs some maternity clothes? I have 3 giant bags full!

    And also I have huge box of gently worn boys clothes – most are size 2T ish, with about 6 pairs of boys shoes size 7-9W.

    If there’re some monkees out there in need, I will ship the stuff this week! Please email me at [email protected] with “monkee” in the subject line (rather than reply here). (Or if anyone spotted a helping hands need that matches what I have to give, please let me know!) Thanks!

  13. MI have followed you on fb for sometime and sent a request
    Nov 9 19amest. I know you had to cut off at 500, is it safe to.assume
    If I haven’t heard anything maybe next year*? Thanks to you Randall monkees!!!

  14. I hope someone is able to read this. Was not sure if I should leave a comment here or on facebook.

    Please forgive me, I am in shock, I am in awe, I am feeling so many things right now I am not even sure if I can formulate my words correctly….but here it goes.

    Yesterday I posted a need for my family, I had an overdue water bill (along with an eviction notice) I did not want to post my need, I felt stupid and dumb and ashamed….yet, I felt that God wanted me to post it, and I did.

    Seriously, not THREE MIN later I get a reply from Ashley T who wants to pay the entire bill?!?! (I also had three other replies in my email, but Ashley’s was the first)

    It is hard for me to trust people, so I assume it is hard for people to trust me. I took a picture of my water bill with my cell phone and emailed it back to Ashley. She asked that I call her, I did. I was probably a blubbering fool on the phone, but, whatever.

    Next thing I know she calls my water company and pays the entire bill. I have a 0 balance!!!!

    Ashley was on my mind all day today, I could not stop thinking about her. I sent her another email, just trying to tell her more about my family so she would “know us” know the family she helped ya know?

    Shortly after I send the email she calls me, and in turn, she tells me a story of what lead her to pay my water bill. I will not bore anyone with the details, but it was truly the work of God, and G, and all of you Monkees.

    After all of this, I believe both Ashley and I will be forever bonded, but more importantly, I think we both know and understand Gods vision for our lives…….random acts of kindness.

    Thank You, Thank You, Thank You for changing me, for making me want to do better.

    Jennifer

    • Thank you for sharing this beautiful story.
      Love to both of you and your families. <3

    • Thank you so much for sharing…..
      I understand how you felt about not willing to give details when you first posted…. But what really counts is that you did it, and it paid off.
      God is amazing !!!!!

  15. I *love* this! I just found out about it and it appears that listings are closed to new entries; will it reopen?

  16. I found the Momastery website a while back and was so uplifted by what I read. I thought it was a great blog and worthy of a like on facebook. But let me be honest…I wasn’t about to identify myself as a Monkee…I mean, that’s just crazy, right? Well, today I reached out with my very limited ability to give and the response I found in my inbox a few hours later dissolved me to a puddle on the spot. The enthusiastic, heartfelt gratitude from a woman raising funds for her very needy friend was just enough to send me over the edge…I am indeed a proud Monkee from this day forward. To God be all the glory!

  17. I am litterally crying my eyes out at the computer right now.

    I found this Amazing blog this year and have been a follower. Never commenting but following for 6+ months. Yesterday I read thru everyones wishes and cried at the responses and the needs of so many.

    You see my husband and I are not rich. We have enough to make it each paycheck and that about it. Earlier this year he sold his hunting boat to pay some bills we had gotten behind in. Then I had a minor knee surgery and had some complications. So once again we are looking at a huge stack of bills. So the idea of him being able to buy his hunting license was just out of the question. And when we made that decision I cried. You see my husband is the most sacrificial man I know. He has given up so much in our marriage for our family. He works 12-14hr days to help us make ends meet and so I can stay home with our kids. So the thought of him not getting to do what he loves because of our lack of funds crushed me.

    And so as I read through the ads I felt silly asking for the money his hunting license ($100) and maybe a gift card or two. But finally after several deleted ads I posted it this morning. I prayed and said if 1 person responds Awesome and if no one responds that’s still okay. I went about my day and when I sat down to check email there was nothing. Then later I thought lets check my spam folder and low and behold there was 2 messages – 1 from Amy B to cover the entire license fee and one from Jenifer to buy a $25 gift card.

    I am so amazed at how caring people are. How they would care enough to give back to my husband so he can have a little fun this winter and do what he loves best.

    Thank You Monkees!! And Thank You Glennon for being such an amazing woman, having a place we can come too and for showing us how to stand tall even when life is hard and throws you some rotten curve balls.

    From the bottom of a very happy wife and tear stained face I say THANK YOU!

  18. I read this post yesterday and I was so excited to be a part of HH this year. I found Momastery last year after Holiday Hands was over. I didn’t think I would create a listing even though I have needs for my family like so many others. As I was driving yesterday, God spoke to me and I heard that nudge to do it. I was still on the fence but I’ve been browsing the listings ALL DAY. I responded to one that I know I can help with and it doesn’t require money.

    I finally gathered up the courage to post my need before I leave for the day and no new submissions are being accepted. I’m sure a miracle will still come my way but I’m beating myself up for procrastinating.

  19. Just wanted to say that please check your junk folders for emails coming from givers or receivers. That’s where mine came, and I thought I was being ignored!

  20. Last night, my 17 year old son was robbed at gun point at the dry cleaners where he works. How could someone point a gun at MY SON? Thank God no one was hurt. I could hate the world right now, if not for evidence that most people are good, and loving, and want to help – not hurt – each other.
    Thanks for all the love here. My faith in humanity is tested, but not broken.
    Please love your children, tell them that you love them, tell them it’s not OK to steal or hurt anyone – no matter what.

    • May God continue to watch over you and your son. It is such a relief that no one was physically injured. I pray that PTSD does not read its ugly head too badly or for too long. Thank you for being so gracious in the face of such a harrowing situation.

  21. I met one Mamas need, and another Mama met my need!!! This is the best Idea EVER!!! <3 I wish everyones holiday could be this AmaZing!!! Merry Christmas Monkees!!!

  22. Glennon.. I am so in awe of you and I can’t even imagine what you go through in managing this revolution of amazing women! I have been a mess the last 24 hours in reading all of these requests and wanting so badly to help every single one! The needs out there are staggering and I can’t thank you enough for this amazing opportunity to give.. You Rock and the Monkies Rock Too!

  23. G, this is so awesome!! “Small things with great love. . .” I am loving this opportunity to help!! I have helped one and want to help more, but there are a few things I am noticing that might help our receivers get more help and get better help, and keep the givers from getting discouraged!! I have noticed that any time I email someone who has a very specific request, their need has been met, and those with broader requests are still on the board.

    It seems as though people with very specific requests are getting the most responses- no matter how large or small! Sometimes we helpers feel overwhelmed because we don’t know where to start when someone’s story is so sad and they are in so much trouble, and we want to bless them with the very things that would help them most!! Some monkees would rather give things than money because they want to wrap a package and send with love, or give the exact amount of money to cover a specific bill, some people only have used things to donate to others, or a small amount of money to give which seems overwhelming when someone is so in need, etc.

    I know it is so hard to ask for help in the first place, which is why people are having a hard time being specific, but the more specific people are it seems the faster their needs are being met! Could you please, please encourage and remind those on the asking end to edit their posts to be as specific as possible with their story and with their needs? Some people are even leaving out the ages and genders of their kids, and I know if they included those things it would help givers find them!! Even including a list under their request story with things they are looking for, a gift card to walmart, 3T snow pants, size 9 shoes, a car seat, $565 for a medical bill, an ipad, resume help, etc. that can be updated as multiple monkee givers offer to help?? I know people are afraid to be specific because they are afraid to ask in the first place, so please, please encourage people to ask for small and bold things specifically so we can best help and find the person whose needs meet our skills!! Everyone is deserving- everyone is in!!

    You are seriously changing the world. This is radical love, and I am proud to be a part!!!

  24. I smiled when I read about the 3 presents vs. 6 presents. Growing up when it was just my brother and I, Christmas was out of control. At 25, I can’t tell you that I remember getting all those presents. When my mother had my twin sisters, we adopted a new rule. Each kid gets 3 presents, and then a stocking with an orange at the bottom, tooth brushes, candy, lip gloss, etc. The three presents each symbolized the gifts that were given to Jesus by the three wise men. Momma said, “If it’s good enough for Jesus, it’s good enough for you”. Christmas is still exciting for the little ones and less overwhelming.

    • we do that too! three presents from santa :) but they usually get a few from mom and dad too. i just thought that was such a perfect way to keep Jesus in the picture!

  25. I woke up this morning and felt like last night was a dream. I had to look back in my inbox and see that, yes, my needs were answered by three lovely people who each offered to fulfill with something we needed. It felt like a dream because I cannot believe that I actually posted. That I finally admitted to myself that we are in need. I had been avoiding the truth, trying to pretend despite mounting bills and unending overdue notices that we were okay. When I finally realized that there were no options left, I was overcome by guilt – how did things get so bad? I did not feel worthy of the generosity of others. But this project opened my eyes and opened my heart to receive. The quick reply of these kind-hearted Monkees made me realize that there are people who want to share lovingly, unconditionally. That God had connected me with the help we needed. I have found strength in knowing that our human community is alive and pulsating with generosity. I still feel bad about needing to ask and may still be in a bit of shock. But from bottom of my heart, thank you. thank you. thank you.

  26. Too funny!! I asked for something. For myself. A luxury. I thought I would have a chance to review my post – to really, really make sure I wanted to do it. I uploaded a picture and next thing I know my requst was gone! Submitted!

    Can I please tell you all – that moment when I realized my request was gone, OUT THERE was PURE JOY! I laughed. Doesn’t matter if I get it or not. I asked. For me. I’m on a high!

    I’m quite sure I would have chickened out at the last second, dismissing my request. But the fact that it WENT before I had a chance to talk myself out of it. TOO much fun! What a great way to start the day! THank you ALL!

  27. My son, Jack, will receive an iPad thanks to the wonderful Heather S. and this wonderful iPad. The first step to real communication for my nonverbal 8-year-old. Thank you. So much more than you know.

  28. GLennon- this is amazing. Last night I went to bed worrying about how I was going to make Christmas special for my kids. Presents under the tree, stockings full of treats, and a delicious dinner. HOW? Living paycheck to paycheck, utilities shut off, food banks, too small coats…. extras are not happening around here. We just had a major car repair that took every penny of our savings. So no Christmas. How do I explain THAT? They do without all the extras that their friends take for granted- my kids go without and now Christmas? That is just too cruel. So imagine how I felt when this morning I get on the blog and see this- Holiday Hands, asking Monkees to ask for help and for other Monkees to help them. God was in on this- he knew I needed this today. I got on the site and I asked for help and within an hour I had three ladies wanting to help me. Because of these “Monkee Angels” my beautiful kids will have Christmas this year. Presents under the tree, food to enjoy, its all a miracle!! Thank you, THANK YOU Glennon for putting this together. And thank you to my angel Monkees- on Christmas morning I will be thinking of all of you when I watch my kids open their presents on Christmas morning.
    ps- We got snow here today, for the first time this season. I LOVE snow. I’m pretty sure this is the best day ever.

  29. So I jumped on a post early on in the afternoon– right at 2. I’ve not heard from her and I was monitoring the post to see if she went with someone else but now the post seems to have disappeared. Should I assume that she removed her own post? Are you allowed to do that? Leslie S from South Carolina who asked for a small luxury for herself is the post I connected with and I REALLY wanted to give her something special! Ack. What to do??

  30. Hi Monkees! Sorry to bother you with a question on Helping Hands submission but I’m not sure where else to ask….I have tried to post a request for help but it never directs me to the finishing page, the one with the “blue headline” and I have not gotten an email with the link to my post. However, when I go to “Browse Listings” I see it there (well, two actually, by accident b/c I thought the first one didn’t go through!!)…..so does this mean it IS up and running? And is there a way I can edit/delete one of them if I never received an email?? I am so sorry to bother you, and I swear I DID watch all tutorials and read all directions, aghh!

    Thank you!!

  31. Hey G –
    I am part of a Facebook Family – all of whom have been impacted in one way or another by ALS (yes, Claudia from Indiana is part of our ALS FB Family). Anywho, one of our dear sweet peeps lives in Highlands, NJ – one of the most devastated areas. Her house is OK – and she is personally delivering gift cards and $100 bills to those who are less fortunate. We have a closed group on FB that is organizing donations – bypassing big relief organizations because these folks have NOTHING. I’m hoping it’s OK to add you to the group. If we can make a Monkee-love connection and get some Holiday Handiness/Rainbow Connection mojo going – that would be saweeeeet! xoxo

  32. I shared the same guilt that so many others have quoted, and yet, something drove me to post. And within ten minutes, I had multiple responses. That alone floored me, and I had to choose which one to accept. But once I did, I took the time to answer the rest as well. Because each and every person who offered has touched me in a way that I did not know was possible. Each of these people have brought tears of joy to my eyes, and pangs of unbelievable love to my heart. Each single day seems so hard, and yet… there is LOVE in this world. There is CARING. There is a level of selflessness and community out there that so many people look past in our own day to day struggles to just get through. So, my son will have a Christmas this year, and that alone is a miracle. But I had my Christmas tonight, when I realized that despite what I may think, I’m not alone. And despite the doubt that creeps in around the edges sometimes, another Monkee reminded me tonight: I can do hard things. Love to all of you Monkees who are making hard things happen.

  33. Hi Monkees! Quick question – if I messaged a receiver around 7:30pm and haven’t heard back, should I assume her need has been met? I ask because it seems like most givers are hearing back already. If her need has been met, I’d love to go give to someone else! Any suggestions, or should I wait it out?

  34. I submitted my mom’s name last year and still get teary-eyed when I remember the response. You personally helped her out, Glennon, because you said anybody named Pixie should have a rock star Christmas! And there were others here too, and a few words left here in a comment can’t adequately express how it changes a person to be on the receiving end. I know no one thought I’d be able to read this post and whip out a Kid Rock song, but… “and even though it’s bittersweet, and brings you to your knees, it makes us who we are in times like these”. You, Glennon, are helping make people who they are. Your powerful words and endless generosity are actually changing people and impacting families and I can never express how grateful I am for what you did for my unemployed mom last year.

    And guess what?! She’s employed this year (two jobs actually), but she’s doing what needs to be done. There’s a cycle to everything and you’re bringing people together no matter what stage of the cycle they might be in. You’re creating some kind of weird infinity sign where people just move from one spot to the next but always stay on the loop. From the receivers to the givers to the readers… we’re all part of the same loop, aren’t we?

  35. Hey, MSMD team, can you help? I saw instructions that I should wait for my name to show up in the ‘taken’ area of the gift I promised to give. How strict are we being about the name thing? I have a feeling that my receiver may have more than one offer of help and she has marked the item ‘taken’ but not with my name. Are we just sallying forth and sending? I’m all for sending someone more than they need, but there are lots of folks asking for help. What do you suggest and can you advise? I hate to press it with my receiver, but I also want to spread the love. Thank you! – A fellow Monkee

  36. donated this morning & it feels amazing!!!

    xoxo
    cathy

  37. I feel so guilty for even asking. I have almost deleted my post ten times since I posted. But something keeps me from that, so far.
    Thank you all for such a soft place to fall. I really can’t say how much it means even to have a place to spell out my situation and stand in my truth even if that is as far as it goes.
    Thank you.

  38. What a divine gift! As I posted on the MSMD site, my 11 year old neighbor told me last week that he brother has been walking 2 miles each way to school this year because now that our district is charging for bus service her family can’t afford for him to ride.

    I’ve had such a heavy heart and have wanted to help, but the $350 was simply more than my family could afford right now. Within 30 minutes of having posted my request I had 2 people contact me to give $200 towards his pass!!!

    The district said that I could purchase it anonymously so he and his family won’t know to thank the Monkees, but I sure do and am so, so thankful for the generosity that abounds on this site. Blessings and love to all.

    • Uh oh – I hope I didn’t goof up by accepting 2 offers of help. Since the need was $350 and one person offered $50 and another $150, I accepted both of them (and then was planning on giving the final $150 myself). Is that okay?

  39. […] way – just people helping people. For the holidays, Monkey See Monkey Do runs Holiday Hands. I’ll just quote Glennon: The concept of Holiday hands is simple. It is this: This holiday, I would rather my kids have three […]

  40. I am in Oklahoma and recently lost my Job, I am loOking for another one but since I am in a wheelchair this is proving to be tough.
    I could use assistance with buying groceries or paying my rent since it seems these days I must choose to do one or the other. I am eternally grateful for any helP someone might offer me. I have been silently
    Reading this blog for months
    Love and prayers!

    • Dear Kristen
      Your story is so touching and you are so worthy of assistance.
      I hope you will post a request on the Monkee-See Monkey-Do page and sign up for people to help.

      If you haven’t done so already the blue links in Glennon’s post can get you there (I tried to paste the link here)http://monkeeseemonkeedo.org/holiday-hands

      Just don’t want your request to get lost among so many comments on this momastery board-
      Wishing you the best!

  41. This is amazing. Love to see the Christmas spirit present. Peace and goodwill to all.

  42. Just wanted to say I think this is a beautiful idea that gets to the heart of what the holiday season is really about – spreading joy peace & love:)

  43. As I told my monkee receiver I’m now hooked up with “This made my day!” Looking forward to shopping with my children for that family.

  44. I see several requests involving the acronym NOVA. Please excuse my ignorance, but what does that stand for?

  45. “We will be buying a helmet for a stranger’s son.” – that was my ask last year. That was me. This project last year, well it changed my life and my heart and gave me hope when I had very little. My husband lost his job in June of 2011 and by November I had no idea how I was going to give my 3 kids Christmas or even feed them. I had two part time jobs and spent 5 hours a week taking my 3 year old to multiple therapies to treat his neurological condition that affected his speech and motor movements. That November, the Holiday Hands November, the one where we had no money, no options and little hope my blessed little boy learned to ride a tricycle which was something we didn’t know if he would ever be able to do. A friend of mine told me about the Holiday Hands and I requested a bike helmet for my boy so that he could take his new skills out of the driveway. I felt awful for asking. I felt like the worst mom in the world that I couldn’t buy my son a $20 bike helmet but we needed $20 of food more than we needed the helmet. I was matched with some wonderful monkee angels and they said “we got this. don’t worry”. Then the box came. You guys, this box had a bike helmet for my son and it also had Christmas for my entire family. I am talking everything from things we needed like socks and warm clothing to dress up outfits for the boys and a tutu for my baby girl. I got to sit in my bedroom and actually wrap gifts for my kids. I cried the entire time. There was no judgement about “why didn’t you get another job” or “can’t your husband take a different job”. No one asked me anything other than “what do you need”. They even sent something for me and I got to wrap it so that my kids saw me open something, they loved that. Those monkees didn’t just buy a helmet for someone’s son, they sent us Christmas, they sent us hope and they did it in a way that didn’t hurt our pride or our self worth. They sent us a huge box of love and I have to say that a year later I still have that hope and that love. 2012 has been a much more stable year for us and we recently received news that our son’s neurological condition is nearing “resolved” status. It was a small thing that someone did for us – but to us – it was the biggest thing. My oldest son says that it is year that Angels brought Christmas instead of Santa.

    • I am sitting here crying!! What a wonderful story. I am so very proud to be a Monkee!!!!!!!!!! What a wonderful Monkee world. We can do hard things. The power of giving if brutiful! God Bless!

    • Thanks for sharing this. :) Super inspiring. So glad someone was there for you!

    • This is why I love the Monkees!! I’ve put in a request for someone to do this very thing for my lobster- my sister. She’s lost her hope, her faith in the world…and it’s breaking my heart! She doesn’t believe she’s worthy anymore…and I want her to see that this ‘ol world isn’t quite so bad! Thank you so much for sharing your story! Much love and blessings to you!

    • Someone just picked me to be able to help them out this year and I am crying and doing cartwheels. I think it is important for people to understand that as hard as it might be for them to ask for help, they are blessing the people who are helping them. I didn’t really understand that last year, but I get it now. I felt like I won an award when I got an email saying “I am grateful for you offer and would like to accept your help”. Can’t wait to go to the post office tomorrow!

    • Thank you for sharing! I am sitting here crying as I read this and so inspired by the way someone would reach out to a complete stranger. As I face a very difficult holiday myself it’s encouraging and uplifting to read stories such as this!

    • I’m crying too, Jamie! So glad that things are starting to even out for you.

  46. Monkees, I have been reading Glennon’s blog for a while now…even went back to the beginning and caught up on all previous posts. Her honesty, vulnerability and insightfulness have uplifted me more than I can say. I just recently went through a breakup of a ten year relationship after receiving the “News” and am struggling to find my way daily, but that’s not what this post is about. About a year and a half ago I came in contact with a woman who was drowning in her addictions (meth and alcohol). Something about her touched me and I felt, if given chance and someone who really cared and was willing to offer a hand up that she could overcome her demons. She came from a background of substance abuse, sexual abuse and the foster care system. I befriended her and worked for months to convince her to enter a rehab program. It took losing her parental rights to her four year old daughter to finally get through to her (she had already lost custody of her older three daughters). She was in jail by this time, but we convinced the judge that she was one of the ones that could be saved if given a chance and some support. He allowed her to go a residential rehab for mothers (Mothers Making a Change) and she completed the six month residential program and was released to a six month out patient program. She has been clean for over a year now, but things are spiraling down and I’m afraid for her sobriety at this point. She has tried so hard, but really only had me to rely on for help and support and now my circumstances have changed and I’m no longer able to help her financially. I will never abandon her because I truly believe she wants to make a different life for herself and her girls (two of which she has been allowed to see and be involved with) She has proved it to me in so many ways under circumstances that would have crushed me, but somehow she remains hopeful, but I can see that she’s starting to waver and it scares the Hell out me! The problem is she has no way (transportation) to get to her outpatient classes 4 day a week. She cannot drive (license suspended) unless she has an interlock (breathalyzer) installed in the vehicle she drives and she has no vehicle and no resources to purchase one. She wants so badly to be able to finish her rehab program (if not she is in danger of being remanded back into custody) and get a job. She could work at least part-time while finishing her classes, but unless the transportation issue is resolved, I’m afraid that all the progress made will go by the wayside and she will just end up as another failure statistic that fell through the cracks of the system. I can’t relay her entire life story as it would take a book, but if you knew what this woman has been through it would break you heart and at the same time uplift you. She struggles everyday just to have a roof over her head and food to eat, but she hasn’t given up her dream of one day being a dental assistant. She wants to start GED classes, but again everything hinges on the transportation issue. So many of her so-called friends and family have betrayed her and to an extent, I believe they want to see her fail so they can say, “See, I told you she was just an addict and that’s all she will ever be”. I have to try everything I know to do help her break this cycle of abuse and addiction that has been her life for 28 years.

    I don’t have the resources to do it on my own so I am turning to the only place I know that might possibly see what I see in this woman’s struggle to literally survive and make a lifelong change that will not only affect her life, but the lives of her children. I don’t know if there is anything the Monkee community can do (we live in the suburbs of Atlanta, GA), but if anyone has an old vehicle that runs and is reliable (looks don’t matter at all) and would like to help another mother have a chance at redemption, I (and in return she) would be so grateful and blessed. I have prayed for a miracle for her and I am hoping the Monkee nation might be able to help that miracle materialize. If I could do this on my own, I would not hesitate, but under my new circumstances and current struggle, it just isn’t possible and it breaks my heart. She doesn’t know I’m writing this – she doesn’t know about the Monkees, but I do know that if given the chance she will surely pay it forward as will I.

    I know this is a lot to ask, but how can you put a price on someone’s life and that of their children? I feel so privileged to have found Momastery and this community and only hope that someone out there will have the key and be willing to share it to open the door to a future for my friend. I fear that without intervention soon, it will be too late and I don’t know if she will survive another bout in the throes of addiction.

    Thank you, Monkees for being there for Glennon and so many others and I pray that something good will come from me finding this blog. I feel it was meant to be.

    Deb

    PS – I did not proof this and I know the punctuation sucks, but that’s not the point is it?

    • Deb,

      Your story is touching and I hope your friend gets what she needs. But, I don’t think there is a way of helping efficiently unless you go to the Monkee-See Monkey-Do page and sign up for people to help.

      The blue links in Glennon’s post can get you there (I don’t know to add a link here)

      I just don’t want your request to get lost in the many comments that come on the Momastery boards : )

      • Jennifer,

        Thank you for the steering me to the right posting site. I posted my request and am hoping and praying for a response. Miracles do happen – I believe!

  47. Glennon, you really do have an amazing ability to make others feel GOOD about themselves. You generate hope in some and bring out the generosity in others…..it’s like combining peanut butter and chocolate all over again! You truly are a fantastic person to ‘know’. Thanks for all you do with your mind and heart.

  48. I am so excited to be a helping hand this year! I missed last year – but not this year! I’m in! Go Monkees!!!

  49. After reading some of the requests of the Helping Hands, I am feeling guilty for requesting anything for my family. Yes, we are struggling – daily, weekly, monthly to keep things going, but so many others have it far worse than we do. I just can’t wait for a time when I am able to say that I am not struggling, and that I can GIVE… What I can give is love and understanding, compassion and grace and a whole lot of THANKS to Miss Glennon for creating this space for us to share with eachother.

    • I think this is about more than trying to figure out if we are worthy enough to receive. We are all worthy to receive love. All of us. We are also all worthy enough to give love, as you so wisely mention. It’s just that some days, we could use that one little bit of extra love from a stranger. Then, our buckets filled, we can turn around and share that love with others.

      If you need love this year in the form of something small. Just ask. There are plenty of people just waiting to share their love with you.

      • Holly, your post made me smile. My 4 y.o. always talks about her “full bucket” and “that made my bucket full” (or, when we went on one of our rare trips to McDonald’s and they were renovating, “that empties my bucket, mommy”)

        • Funny, Ingrid! Maybe she’s reading the same books my boys are at their school? “Have you filled a bucket today?” by Carol McCloud. The books are great and such good images for the little ones. Being the bucket fillers in life instead of the bucket dippers.

          I inadvertently used the bucket terminology here…we use it so often around the house!

  50. I think this is wonderful and I plan on participating. One comment though… is it really appropriate to be requesting items such as an I PAD for your six year old?

    • The whole point of the movement is to spread love without judgement. iPads and technology in general open up a new world to people and have apps that are helpful to those with special needs. Just embrace it! Everyone deserves something!

      • Agreed, Pennie!

        Glad you’re watching out to make sure no one’s getting taken advantage of, Meghan; I totally understand that your comment came from a good place. I appreciate your commitment to justice and fairness. That said, let’s just let any Monkees who can or want to fulfill those wishes make those decisions for themselves. Like Pennie, the unconditional love of this movement is my favorite part! No need to contribute to those requests you don’t feel called to fulfill.

      • My request was even crazier, as my almost 3 year old is asking for an iPad for her birthday/christmas (bd is 12/22)… while I feel like this is an outlandish request, she can navigate the thing far better than I can… She is in love with music and watching her “bidios” online – a simple request that I can not grant because I do not have a computer at all. She has learned to navigate the iPad through aunties that bring theirs to church, and whenever she sees said aunties, she asks if she can play with theirs… Girl plays Angry Birds like no ones business… I do feel guilty for requesting, but guiltier (if that wasn’t a word it is now) that I can not fulfill the request myself now, or any time in the near future, as food and electricity for them is far more important.

        • I just want to point out that one of the biggest things that separates the “haves” from the “have nots” is technology. My husband recently took some extra money that we came into, and used it to put iPads and iPod Touches in the hands of refugees.

          Refugees have nothing. They are happy to get food and shelter, and those things are firstly the most important…but technology opens doors. Technology gives them access to programs that help them learn the language, learn new skills, stay in contact with friends and families… we learned that access to technology plays a huge role in leveling the playing field of this crazy game of life just a little bit.

          Asking for access to technolgoy that others take for granted is not something to be ashamed of. Those askers are giving their children a huge gift.

      • Amen, Pennie! That’s one of the best things about the holiday helping hands- we just get to give (and receive)- no questions, just blessings. I think sometimes we lose sight of the true gift we’re giving others- hope and faith.

    • I haven’t read the request, so I don’t know whether the requester has a child with autism, but you never know: http://www.cnn.com/2012/05/14/tech/gaming-gadgets/ipad-autism/index.html

  51. THANK YOU, GLENNON.

    I am one of the askers. I am a single mom, just getting on my feet after breaking up with their dad, and I asked for help with purchasing a trundle bed/mattresses for my daughters to use in my new place.

    I am absolutely amazed and dumbfounded. Within THREE HOURS, four generous women covered the ENTIRE COST of those items ($450!). One woman, bless her heart, offered to pay for the whole thing, but I had already gotten some help.

    Although I can’t reciprocate on my own, I am rallying my own troops to give back. I am a member of several Meetup groups, full of moms and strong, giving women. I have asked them to contribute $5 or whatever they can, so we can give others a leg up. I can’t wait!!

  52. I hope she picks me!!!! I emailed one monkee and was tearing up the whole time..I could barely write my email!! I’m so excited…one idea. there is someone who has 9 children…could maybe 2 or even 3 monkees join together to fill that request?

  53. The Monkees rallied behind me and had groceries sent to my house a few months ago when my family was in a tough spot. The love this site generates is amazing. We are never alone. I’m excited and blessed to help this year!

  54. I was wondering how in the world you were going to handle the extra numbers this time. Glad to hear you came up with something – going over now to check it out.

  55. I am new to your blog and I love it! Thank you for inspiring all of us! Charity work is a passion of mine and I always find people are willing to give when presented with the opportunity. Thank you for doing the “behind the scenes” work to bless so many! Your work, Glennon and company, makes God smile :) God bless!

  56. Love this and can’t wait to participate! May I suggest that you add a Facebook link to the Monkee See–Monkee Do home page? Much love to you all!

  57. love holiday hands. looking forward to being a part of it!

  58. Holy Monkee! The website is amazing. I just wanted to give the entire Monkee See-Monkee Do Board a big pat on the back for making this happen.

  59. Read like 5 of these and am in tears already this morning. Both of sadness and compassion and joy because I know many of the simple wishes will be met. Love wins!

  60. This is such a great idea. I have been reading your blog for a long time but never commented. I am so happy to be able to help out some of the people asking for help — I keep checking back to see what more I can do, because I’m literally ADDICTED!! What a great feeling!

  61. Is this only for Monkees in the USA?

  62. This is an amazing wonderful and easy way to ask for help and to help! I’m excited to be a part of it. I do have a skeptical question….Is there any sort of checking system in place to ensure the folks requesting help truly need it? I hate to even think that way but unfortunately people exist who take advantage of others without any thought. Even the people who have lost almost everything during Sandy have to worry about whatever remains in their homes being stolen by looters. Sickening.

    • Yep, we’re asking questions where we feel it’s warranted. But, like always, love is a risk.
      :)
      Love, G

    • Glennon would probably answer your question better than I can… but….since no one has responded yet, I would like to volunteer my own two cents. I don’t speak for Monkee See Monkee Do. This is just my own opinion.

      I believe that outlandish, no-holds-barred love and generosity is a changing force. I believe it changes the giver and the receiver. I’ve seen that kind of generosity change people’s hearts and lives, with the wide-eyed wonder that comes from “wow-I-don’t-deserve-this-amazing-goodness-that-is-being-lavished-on-me” closely followed by “how-can-I-start-to-give-back?” I believe that a “checking system” would diminish that. That it would slowly evolve from “do you really need this?” into “who can prove they need this most?” And then receivers would be in competition with each other, trying to out-need and out-woe each other to get the goods.

      Glennon is honest, sometimes painfully so, in her blogs. I truly believe the women (and men) who read her blog will be challenged, by her own honesty, to be honest themselves. The fact that she COULD be taken advantage of doesn’t mean that she WILL. And even if, God forbid, someone does take advantage of Monkeedom, would that be WORSE than not giving at all? I don’t think it would be.

      Most practically, the logistics of a “checking system” are quite daunting. Monkee See Monkee Do is not a government agency. Could they possibly obtain access to people’s financial records, employment records, etc? I’m not sure it’s in the realm of the possible, and even if it were, that kind of red tape would seriously hinder the good that is being done.

      Also practically speaking, what criteria would you use to judge whether or not a person really “needs” what they say they need? Would there be an income-to-family-size ratio used? Would you require a checklist of tragedies, such as only giving to families who have lost jobs, or homes, or have growing medical needs? In most of these cases, you would need to take people’s word for it, since verification of these facts would take thousands of man-hours that I doubt Glennon and her volunteers have. And if you’re going to take their word for it, you don’t really need an explanation anyway.

      I’m not trying to sympathize with looters, goodness knows. I understand the revulsion you feel towards someone who would smash in windows with a crowbar and steal other people’s possessions. But I don’t believe that is what Glennon is opening herself up to here at all. I believe Monkee See Monkee Do does so much more good than a government charity, BECAUSE their lack of red tape and regulations allows them to give more. More quickly, more directly, more intimately, etc.

      Okay, I’m not great at expressing my thoughts as well as Glennon does. But I tried. Done now. :)

    • totally worth the risk.

  63. I missed out on this last year, but it was word of this that lead me to your site and your words were just what I needed at the time. Love how the universe works that way! i’ve been an avid reader/participant ever since. Count me in for this year!!

  64. hi glennon.
    i love the holiday hand idea, but im sure that youve been watching the news to see the devastation that is happening in ny/nj. there are a lot of elderly ppl in my community who are without heat or electricity as I write – sandy hit us pretty hard and we were flooded but are grateful to have a roof and as you can see partical electricity so i can write this.
    the holidays are still a little ways away, maybe you can rally some ppl to help those that are in desperate need right now of gloves and hats and coat. ive been helping distribute food to the neighboors and collecting clothes for families that lost everything.
    thanks

    • Sabina-
      I have extra kids coats and such here… I’d love to motivate my kids classes to help, too, but I’m not sure where we would send them. Do you have any thoughts on that? I’m sure more is needed, too…

      • This is from a friend of mine named Judy Lennon. She lives in Columbia, SC and has shared this update on her Facebook page:

        South Carolina and Florida peeps and any other wanting to Help Sandy Victims. My friend @Lisa Goldberg in NYC has informed me that Many kids are in need of Blankets, Coats, hats, warm clothes etc. if you can help with Anything please Mail to Stephen Kunken c/o 109 Wolcott St Ground Floor. Brooklyn, NY 11231

        Viva La Reloveution!

        • Thanks, Rebeccah… I’m on it!

          • Hey all. Thanks for this wonderful post. We took on an extraordinary number of clothes in one day and have more than enough right now. We actually have to now figure out how to pass some of the current stuff onward…so please know we are thankful for the thought but PLEASE DON’T SEND. Social media has been an amazing place for help…so thank you.

          • Sent off a small box of warm kids clothing before I saw Stephen’s post. Hoping it can it’s way to those in need.

            xxoo

      • I was just looking into this too. I found online that Carter’s and Osh Kosh B’Gosh are doing a coat drive from now until November 15th. You can bring in a new or clean and gently used coat and they will ship them out to people affected by Sandy.

        I don’t know if I can post links on here, but here is where I saw it:

        http://www.examiner.com/article/carter-s-and-osh-kosh-b-gosh-help-children-affected-by-hurricane-sandy

    • I lost my mom in 20120 and my dad 5 months ago. I would LOVE to know of a place providing coats for elderly victims of Hurricane Sandy. If anyone has more info, i would be happy to send money for coats in my parents memory.

    • If you move this request to the Monkey-See Monkey-Do page, it is less likely to get lost in the volume of comments that we are bound to see.

      Glennon has two blue links in the post above that will take you directly to the spot :)

    • Thank you guys so much.
      I’ll get an address out to you. Ppl are now in need of cleaning supplies and such.
      THANK YOU MONKEES

  65. So cool! I missed this last year. About a week ago, my son insisted I tell him the truth about Santa. we were both a little sad at his leaving this part of his childhood behind. (He’s my youngest.) I told him what I’d told his sisters years ago, “The best part about knowing the truth about Santa is that now you get to BE Santa, too.” I’d promised him he’d get a chance to help play Santa this year. Holiday Hands is perfect. I plan to have him help us pick someone from the list. Thank you for blessing us with the opportunity to play Santa for someone who needs a little help this year.

    • Awesome. Just growing great things in your kids! You inspire me to do the same…mine, i’ m sure, have figured out the santa thing and it was a little sad for me to think how they’re halfway grown…but this approach is so exciting!! Thanks!

  66. Most of the New Jersey shore area needs everything, homes gone, schools gone. Is there a way to work on that area? A special section? I know of a school trying to get enough supplies by Nov 16. Just because its not in the news anymore doesn’t mean the effects of Hurricane Sandy are all buttoned up. Please, Please, help.

  67. Just wanted to send out a big HI to the Monkee Angel Family I was a part of last year!

    Andrea, Caroline, Molly, Rebecca, Heather, Amy, Jennifer,

    I loved being a part of this small sharing project with all of you! You and all of the Monkees, givers and givees alike, are what makes this place a safe and wonderful place to land.

    much love!
    -Holly

  68. Wow! This is awesome!! I can’t wait to help with this. We have never had a lot, but God has always made sure that we had enough. I remember my oldest baby’s (now 13) first Christmas, and we had nothing because we were so broke. She got two small toys and a pair of shoes. But those memories are still so sweet!

  69. Monkee Board, can you please ask the requesters to be specific of their needs in the listing? I’d love to help, but am afraid those who do not list anything specific might get passed over because people either just won’t know what to buy or are unsure of the cost. Just a suggestion at the beginning of this process. Thanks for all that you do and thank you for this Holiday Hands project. I can’t wait to connect this holiday season!

  70. Holiday Hands helped my daughter last year to be able to purchase Christmas gifts for her newborn daughter, my grandbaby. My daughter was so distraught not having money to do anything. Times were/are rough. Ava is now 14 months old and still has the assortment of toys/books and still plays with them (my daughter thought ahead and what she would need). Our matched-Monkee Katherine took a load off of a new mommie’s shoulders who only wanted to feel the joy of her daughter’s first Christmas and would not have been able to without her. We realize it is not about “things” but the stress of the holidays and just one “thing” goes a long way. Thanks for all the continued love and support here. I hope to help someone this year.

  71. SO happy I participated in Holiday Hands last year. The BEST were the super-brave Monkees that requested help. Absolutely the hardest thing to do. But in doing so they gave of themselves and let those of us with a little extra give of ourselves. WIN-WIN. I was able to be part of a team who gave an ipad to one of our own for her son with learning disabilities. The email we received about his progress was mindblowing (*disclaimer – there were not many of us a year ago – not sure if personal emails will be happening this year). One little Ipad – one team of people – one child – a whole lotta love.
    Get in on this! Be the asker – be the giver. The secret is that both are the receivers.
    lovelovelove

  72. I heard about this too late last year, and I’ve been looking forward to participating this year. You all are amazing!

  73. I am in! Great MSMD website…love it all. Way to move the world forward in such a small way with huge impact. LOVE.

  74. I missed out last year, so I am very excited to be a part of this project this year. Welcome, holiday spirit!

  75. This is great. I will look through the list with my kiddos and see who we want to help :)

    Oh, and if you ever want to upgrade your end of the ratio to 7, let me know :)

  76. This is my first year following you through this effort, what an amazing thing you are doing.

  77. How wonderful! This is truly an amazing monkey community you have created :)

  78. This was SO awesome last year. Excited to participate again. Bring it on!

  79. I’m always so inspired and in awe of the love on this site!!!

    Jen

  80. Yah!! This is amazing and so are all the Monkees on the board! :)))))

  81. Amazing Glennon and Mandy! Awe inspiring and I will pray all goes smoothly. Much love and will help when and where we (girls and I) can!

  82. I am soooooooo in! Any monkees out there feeling the need in Australia, I would love to help! hooray G!

  83. 48000 monkees. Stand back awe G and revel in what you have begun. 48000 souls and intellects who with every small action want to make the world, their world, the whole world a better place.
    Did you know that 20 mins concentrated exercise physically changes yr DNA for up to an hour (BBCScienceClub)? Maybe each deliberate act of LOVE does something to our souls?

  84. Just discovered you a few short weeks ago, have no idea what the hell this is, but I’m in! I am off to link to whatever this project is. Whoop! Whoop!

    • This looks amazing! Cannot wait to get my whole family involved. Thank you, board, for doing all the leg work. Amazing!!! And, Glennon, I hope all things are currently moving in the right direction. Love wins.

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