Tag Archives: Sandy-Hook

Update on Sandy Hook donations

If you read my post here, you’ll know I wanted to put my books up for free in the hope that people who downloaded them would send a small donation to the community of Sandy Hook. Unfortunately, none of that is going to happen any time soon. 😦

After posting that article I did some research [yes, backwards as alwasy]. I discovered that there had been some scamming going on. That lead to more research until I found an organization that was reputable. The organization is the Newtown-Sandy Hook Community Foundation [NSHCF]. This is not the only reputable organization, but it does seem to be the biggest, and it was the one I found. So…

I contacted the NSHCF, asking about donations. This is the very nice reply I received :

‘Good evening Andrea,
Thank you for continuing to think of the Newtown community. As you can
imagine, there are tremendous needs that continue to exist in the community
and will for years to come. Our foundation would welcome donations. We
oversee the Sandy Hook School Support Fund which gave a large portion of the
fund to the 26 families, 2 injured teachers, and 12 surviving children in
the two classrooms. The remaining funds and any future contributions are
being directed to support unmet needs in the community. That process is
being overseen by a distribution committee of 10 individuals that represent
the various groups most impacted- a parent who lost a child, a
representative of the parents of surviving children, a teacher, a police
officer, a fireman, and general community members. The fund plans to
support the needs in the community for the next 15 years so will need
continuous support in order to do so. Your donation would be most welcome.
Checks can be payable to either the Newtown-Sandy Hook Community Foundation
or to the Sandy Hook School Support Fund at the address listed below my
signature. Please let me know if you have any questions and many thanks
once again for your generosity and support.


Jennifer D. Barahona, LCSW
Executive Director
Newtown-Sandy Hook Community Foundation
P.O. Box 194
Newtown, CT 06470

So, while it is possible to donate via NSHCF, each donation would have to be by cheque, and snail-mail. I stopped owning a cheque book years ago, and suspect most online denizens are the same.

Next I considered PayPal because it is so convenient, and secure. But to donate via PayPal, there would have to be an account setup to accept donations, and then someone would have to forward those donations on to the NSHCF. No way in the wide world was that someone going to be me.

“Hey people! Download my books for free and then donate to this account I setup in my own name. Of course I’ll send your donations to charity…”

Yup, that would go down really well. 😦

Finally, I turned to an organization that most people would trust – Amazon itself. Not surprisingly, they asked for clarification :

‘Greetings from AmazonSmile Support,

Could you please restate your initial question it seems that the email did not come through clear. Once we have gathered the needed information from you we will be able to assist you with your questions.

Have a great day!


Best regards,

Brianna B.

I replied, as clearly as I could, and so far I haven’t heard back.

In hindsight, I doubt Amazon can do very much. If they did agree to accept donations to Sandy Hook, the logistics would be a nightmare. They would have to make sure their own status was covered from a legal standpoint. Then they would have to ensure that any funds collected were sent to reputable organizations [can you imagine the scandal if donations ended up going to a scam artist?]. Then they would have to add donation buttons to the ordinary Amazon interface. And then, they would have to provide some way for authors to attach a donation message to each book…and those are just the obvious things that occurred to me after the fact.


The take home message from all this is that my bright, shiny idea is unworkable. I won’t be doing a free giveaway, and I do apologize to everyone for not doing my homework before opening my big mouth. 😦

Not the happiest post I’ve ever written, but I couldn’t just sweep the whole thing under the rug and hope no one would quiz me on it.

Now that I’ve ‘fessed up, I’m going to go start my xmas baking with a clear conscience. I have to make a Chocolate Mousse Cake

, but I’m also going to experiment with a carb-free hazelnut cake. I’ll be using Stevia instead of sugar, and no flour. No idea how it will turn out, but if it’s edible I’ll post the recipe.

Have a great pre-xmas weekend,



What a difference a year makes

I’ve been thinking a lot about befores and afters lately.  Life, my life, was very different a year ago. Back then I was new at everything, including blogging. I’m hardly an expert now, but the screenshot below does show how far I’ve come.

wp stats march 2013

In comparison to other, highly successful bloggers, my stats are very average, however my point in sharing them with you is to highlight the importance of something we all know… and constantly forget, namely time. Even in this age of instant everything, good things take time to develop.

This lesson is particularly important to me because, like all new authors, I struggle with impatience. The six year old hiding inside this 60 year old body wants fame and fortune right now!

Thankfully I am 60 instead of 6,   so today I’m counting my blessings, and right at the forefront of those blessings is the knowledge that I am healthy. I still have time to achieve my dreams. I still have time to write more books.  I still have time to raise awareness of bushfire danger here where I live. And I still have time to enjoy the company of friends and family. That time is a gift beyond measure.

However as I take stock of my blessings, I know not everyone has been given the gift of time that I am enjoying. The children massacred in  Sandy Hook, USA were  not given that gift. And Lady Julia Prosser of Wales was not given that gift either. Lady J lost her fight with pancreatic cancer, and her family, along with the families of the children of Sandy Hook are going to have an awful Easter.

But its not too late for the rest of us to make this world a better place. We have the gift of time. Let’s not waste it.

Rest in Peace.

Ammunition is the key!

The news here in Australia has been full of the Sandy Hook tragedy. I thought it couldn’t make me cry any more, but then tonight I watched a ‘talking head’ describing the defensive wounds on the dead children. Defensive wounds on hands and arms where they tried to shield themselves from bullets…

Then there was another segment where so called experts were discussing whether Obama would do something, and if he did, how much success he would likely have. That’s when a sense of hopelessness set in. It lasted until just five minutes ago when I was catching up on some of the blogs I follow. I can across a post by T.M.Mulligan [Becoming not became], that was so fiendishly clever I just had to reblog it.  The gist is in this quote, but please read the whole post because it is awesome.

“So here’s my idea: Treat ammunition for publicly owned firearms in the same manner our society treats prescription drugs. If you want ammunition you need to go to your local police department; there they’ll write you a legal dispense order for thirty rounds only and non-refillable within a thirty day period. The federal government would monitor ammunition shops like they monitor pharmacies.”

Newtown Might Be Anytown.




Newtown, Sandy Hook – when will the nightmare end?



This is the face that is making me cry.

This little boy survived… but how will he live after what he has seen?

Any society that condones the murder of its own children is a society that is not worth living in.


Please, America. No more.

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