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Sparkly Shoes and Orphan Update

Hey! I got more pictures from LeAnna in Juba!

For those of you just tuning in, Chump Nation turned its awesome generosity to an orphanage school in Juba, South Sudan where my friend LeAnna, a USAID officer, is stationed. LeAnna created a X-mas wish list on Amazon for the school, in lieu of giving or receiving gifts this year, and unbeknownst to her, I published the list here, and chumps bought everything on the list within 24 hours. (Thus abusing the diplomatic pouch mail system apparently…. oops.)

The books, shoes, and toys were delivered at the school’s Christmas party, and I posted some pictures LeAnna sent earlier. But, she was back to read books to the kids, and posted more pictures of the loot we sent on Facebook.

So, in following up to yesterday’s post of getting rid of cheater crap, if anyone is having a yard sale and feeling generous with their proceeds, consider a donation to Confident Children Out of Conflict who run the orphanage school in Juba. (And another town to the north. We bought so much stuff, they divvied it up with another orphanage up country.) That link is to their Facebook page which has links to PayPal in various currencies. These people operate on a shoe string, and as anyone who reads the news knows, South Sudan is a hell hole, and these kids are caught up in it. Stuff to them means a LOT.

Without further ado, here’s more pictures! Chump Nation you ROCK. Thanks again for your donations and let’s do something like this every X-mas, okay?

Leanna1 Leanna2 Leanna3 Leanna4 Leanna5 Leanna6 Leanna7 Leanna8 Leanna9


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  • LeAnna writes: To all who donated to CCC, I stopped by for a visit today. When I arrived, I found a group of girls playing some of the games you sent. I also had fun reading some of the new books to the group. We read Chicka Chikca Boom Boom; One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish; and Goodnight Moon. All three were very popular. CCC staff have also appreciated all of the new books to read to the kids. Thanks again. We will try to keep the pictures coming.

  • What a fabulous idea! Feeling very proud to be part of the “chumps” right now.

  • I am so glad the donations brought some happiness to the kids. Every time I see such things I realize all over again how incredibly lucky I am to have been born in a peaceful and wealthy nation. It’s heartbreaking to think of people all over the world who are in dire straights, wish we could help them all attain peace, love and safety.

    • Absolutely. Despite what we’ve all been through, we’re very lucky. I second Tracy ‘ s suggestion we do something like this every year!

  • Dearest Tracy!

    Thank you for posting those most precious pics of those most precious little ones!
    “One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish” by Dr. Seuss is the book my Mom used to teach me to read!

    To know that is one of the books these little ones are loving makes them seem all that much closer to me & to all of us at ChumpNation—Even if only in spirit & in our hearts!

    I notice the special young boy right next to LeAnna as she reads. So many with special needs will never have someone so amazing as LeAnna in their lives; yet to see even one special needs child and those few other children benefiting—-well, you know our Creator is blessing her & others who are helping out how ever they can!

    Seeing those beautiful smiles—–Well, I imagine LeAnna receives back even more love than what she sends out.

    Even one life touched or changed by the love of another is something precious to behold!

    Forge on, LeAnna….Forge on Tracy…..ForgeOn, Nation

  • Coincidentally, I was thinking this morning about the books we donated and wondered what the children had thought of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe- (which was my choice). We know here how powerful words are, and that a good ending (Chump Lady) can transform lives.

    I (aka The Shredder) haven’t just had to deal with XH ‘memorabilia’. My 83 year old mother died last year and I had to go though her ‘stuff’ too. Clothes and books, the knick-knacks on shelves, in cupboards. The unspent money in the bank. When I said my final goodbye to her in the open casket at the undertakers, it was absolutely clear that ‘you can’t take it with you’. She was dead but her stuff was still here.

    Both events (cheating and death) have had a profound impact on my view of material possessions. I, and I’ll guess most of us here, have always had a roof over our heads at night and a bed to sleep on. If we were hungry it was probably through choice. We’ve always got something to wear. Even in the midst of the horribleness of betrayal and divorce- those conditions were always met.

    At Xmas my grown up son and I decided not to give each other gifts. He donated to a Medical Charity- me here- These are more children without families. The World it seems is full of them. Ebola is the villain for these orphans in Sierra Leone, but fear and ignorance is culpable too.

    I won’t lie and say I don’t buy stuff anymore- I have done some therapeutic spending on the home I moved to post Chumpdom. Cheery, positive items (mostly red?) that help warm the soul too. And I’m very grateful for my home and know how lucky I am. But I also know it’s only a base, and not a retreat- and that the World and its orphans need all of us Chumps to leave the cheating behind and get helping them.

    • In response to Mikky stating that even through divorce and other seperations caused by cheaters, that it is likely that we ever went without. Well today for me is sooooo good! At about this time last year, a friend and myself drove the 4 hr treck to the cheaters to drop off every single thing he ever gave to me in our 10 years together, from socks to an SUV!!! (drove a cargo van too because all wouldn’t fit in SUV) The only thing that didn’t fit was a box spring, just couldn’t quite cram it into the van! So yes, I’ve procrastinated now another full year, mostly because it is so big and bulky and I was trying to figure out how to cost effectively get it there! Well, after an online search, I discovered!! Driver just got here an hour ago and off it went!! Yippee!!! It feels sooooo good to have that last piece off my back that I had to share this with all of you! My sister says that I now need to do a cleansing of my home with sage! 🙂 I probably will! And how apropo… happens to be his birthday! (really, I didn’t plan it this way!)

      • IHH – You sound wonderful…you are now formally “despoused”.

        Cheers to the chump who came up with that word.

        CL – Thanks for the pictures of those beautiful happy kids. What chops your friend surely has choosing this vocation.

    • True. On our deathbeds we won’t be saying we wish we had bought more stuff.

      Thanks for the update, CL. Those kids are beautiful.

      • I bet we wont be saying that we had stayed with our cheaters who hurt and disrespected us either…these kids help us to see the bigger picture and to keep our troubles in perspective.

    • I am new to this blog, reading every entry one by one. This one touched me because it reminded me that even though I feel so hurt and betrayed, I am among the luckier people in this world. What better way to work through pain than to find someone who will appreciate the gifts you have to give?

      It also got to me because my ex had me help him organize a “bar party” for the regulars at his restaurant. They were asked to bring a gift to donate to a local children’s’ hospital. They were also encouraged to buy gift certificates to boost sales. Imagine my disgust when the gifts were still in his office two weeks after Christmas. He never dropped them off, claiming he thought one of his regulars was going to do it for him. The hospital is all of two miles down the road! He let people think they were participating in charity during the holiday season to sell gift cards!

      For all I know, they are still in his car. I went NC soon after that. How could I have been attracted to someone with no charity in their heart? It still blows me away. I think the best thing I can do is continue to care for others that have less fortunate circumstances. It is clear that my picker is broken, so best to be alone till I can get it repaired.

    • And sycophant…..Don’t forget the ‘sycophant’ part…..
      Yeah, whatever…… ;0

  • Thank you, CL, for sharing the opportunity to participate. As a group we were able to take the energy from the bad stuff that brought us all together here, and convert it into something meaningful. This experience seems to be the embodiment of your call to leave a cheater and gain a life.

  • Chumps, one of the things that define us as chumps is our goodness and giving. We like to love…loving our X loving our kids, loving our friends and family, smiling at people in the store, doing good in a difficult world is basic to who we are. That is why we are loving seeing these children and knowing our small efforts are going to great GOOD.

    When we entered this hell, for a time, we lose our places to deposit that love, (our ratty ass X’s but also we have lost the wind in our sails) So on the theme of fake it, till you make it… Try and give someone a genuine smile today. It might do you the world of good too.

    “It only takes a split second to smile and forget, yet to someone that needed it, it can last a lifetime.”

    ~ Steve Maraboli

    • “one of the things that define us as chumps is our goodness and giving”[….] “When we entered this hell, for a time, we lose our places to deposit that love”

      So well said, ROMOB. The project CL posted today, and the hundreds of others we chumps volunteer for or lead, shows we do not lose the ability to Love.

  • ChumpLady, and Chump Nation, you are AWESOME!!
    Ring my bell … I agree. As Jason Mraz sang “…And it takes no time to fall in love
    But it takes you years to know what love is…” (‘Life is Wonderful’, Jason Mraz).

    As above, so below! Ride on CL AND Chump Nation.

  • Kudos to you Tracy, for connecting Chump Nation to such a worthy cause. I really appreciate being able to donate in confidence to these kids and their community. Kudos to LeAnna too for her generosity, courage and devotion. And the pictures – the joyful faces of the kids playing in the pool, wow. Thanks and blessings to all

  • Tracy: instead of only at Christmas, why don´t you make a permanent donation link with something suggestive like “Leave a Cheater: Make an Orphan Happy” where new chumps can send their cheater’s junk garage sale money to. I am sure it will be very therapeutical and help to balance out the universe a bit.

  • Wow! Love to see those amazing smiles and kids who show appreciation for things we often take for granted. Thanks so much for taking the time to share this info. Makes my day! Hugs…

  • What a great way to start my day wih the beautiful faces of these children. I participated in mission work for years and witnessed the stretching of the few dollars and the impact of those few dollars. I am always humbled by the people who devote their lives to ensure that children can not only thrive but live with love…

  • Oh, that top shot of the kids in the little pool is just wonderful. Actually, all the shots are fab. Thanks for sharing, LeAnna and Chump Lady!

  • Awesome pictures! We really do have so much to be thankful for in the US. Thanks Chump Lady for sharing and for the beautiful pictures LeAnna.

    I am really proud to be a chump right now!

  • Wow… these pictures are amazing and you guys are amazing for making it happen. There are those who say ”oh but the problems are so huge, it’s an endless deep hole of need” ie why bother when only a fraction of people get helped, but to that I always repeat that old saying ” I am only one, but I am one and I can do what I can do”. LeAnna is an example of that attitude in action, and so was this fundraising effort. For many of these children, this will be the first ”toys” or proper kids books or nice clothes they have ever had… and sadly, will ever have. Their worlds have been totally changed, make no mistake. Who knows what some of them may achieve or where they might go as a result of self-worth and happiness and a love for learning being sparked?

  • You know, I’m a teacher and when I first got involved with x I used to talk about travelling and teaching overseas. I had thought about volunteering when I was straight out of uni but that didn’t suit my dad! X used to get really excited, being in I.T he said he could work anywhere. It just never really suited him either! Since he left I travelled to Italy on my own and I have plans to travel more too. But I have just checked out the volunteer section on the CCC website. Something else for my bucketlist.

    Sure I sat in some manure for awhile, but I can see something beautiful growing, all I need to do is brush off the crap.

    The photos were really beautiful and inspiring. Thank you 🙂

  • All those precious little faces…….I wish I could bring a dozen or so home with me. Definitely keeping them and all who do such good work there in my prayers.

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