MN Christmas Appeal 2013

(363 Posts)
SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 01-Oct-13 10:35:56

Can you hear the faint tinkle of Santa's sleigh bells? Are you trying to remember where you stashed your fabulous reindeer jumper? tchgrin

Hurrah! That must mean Christmas is [ahem] just around the corner and the Mumsnet Christmas Appeal is gearing up for another year of festive generosity and merriment.

The MNers' heartfelt community spirit is being unleashed for the fourth year in-house. If you're new to the site or need to refresh you memory, please check out how this wonderful Secret Santa gift exchange came about. In short MNetters nominate a worthy recipient and also donate gifts to other MNetters in a HUGE anonymous Secret Santa.

And for those of you who like the sound of the whole thing and are keen to spread the Christmas cheer, here's how it all works.

So if you know of a MNer who could do with a bit of a boost, help towards making their Christmas more enjoyable, or is just particularly luffly, please go to our NOMINATION PAGE to tell us about them. You have until 15th October.

We'll then drop all the nominees a line to ask for their addresses, ages/sex of any DC along with any further family details they're happy to share. This information needs to be with us by 29th October.

If you'd like to add something special to a MNers' Christmas by donating a gift, thank you! Please go to our DONATION PAGE where you can tell us about the gift you'd like to pledge. We love vouchers because they're easier to match, but we'd be delighted with all sorts. Remember, nothing is too small. You have until 29th October.

By 22nd November <gulp> we will be awash with Baileys The Christmas Spirit liquor, but will have matched up all the donations with the nominees and will send out a Secret Santa mail to the donators so all you lovely folk can get your parcels off well before the final Christmas post. Parcels are addressed to the MNetter of the House (unless otherwise stated) to try to maintain anonymity.

This whole process is anonymous, we do not pass over RL or Talk names.

Donators and nominees are given a code to quote if they want to say thank you to one another on the MN thank you thread following the gifts being sent out.

Any questions about the frankly terribly confusing process, please do ask, or take a look at our FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS. tchgrin tchgrin

And so <bounces with excitement> may MNHQ be the first to wish you a very Merry Christmas! Ho ho ho

How exciting! I love doing this. grin

I can't access the FAQs. confused My question is, what if you think a poster has namechanged and you're not sure of their current nickname? Can you nominate them with an old one?

ShamTech (MNHQ) Tue 01-Oct-13 10:59:37

TheJoyfulPuddlejumper yes you can nominate someone with one of their old nicknames.

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 01-Oct-13 10:59:52

Opps, just fixing now blush

WaitMonkey Tue 01-Oct-13 11:00:06

The question that springs to my mind, is how can we do the Christmas emotions ? blush

snowballinafryingpan Tue 01-Oct-13 11:00:12

loved doing this last year, feeling all festive nowgrin

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 01-Oct-13 11:32:39

Links all fine and dandy now. [I love my job]

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 01-Oct-13 12:12:26

WaitMonkey

The question that springs to my mind, is how can we do the Christmas emotions ? blush

You can't yet, we don't switch them on for a little while yet - they are making a secret guest appearance above tchgrin

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 01-Oct-13 12:12:42

Cheeky blush

Ah bollocks. Just tried to nominate someone and it says their nickname doesn't exist. Does that mean they've de registered?

ponygirlcurtis Tue 01-Oct-13 13:06:47

Awwwww, I've been waiting all year for this to appear! I did it last year for the first time ever, and just the whole process really got me where it hurts - the process of nominating people who I think deserved it, the process of planning what to buy for the people I'd received as giftees, and reading the Thank you thread. Have been planning this year's donations since then, after reading some of the amazing ideas from last year. A teeny bit of effort and a whole lot of joy. Brilliant.

WaitMonkey Tue 01-Oct-13 13:27:23

RebeccaMumsnet, now that's just cruel, taunting us like that.grin

CatAmongThePigeons Tue 01-Oct-13 14:01:58

I joined just after this closed last year and it was inspiring to read, tis wonderful and in the true meaning of Christmas

Tintingal Tue 01-Oct-13 14:32:35

I'll be sending in Christmas vouchers courtesy of my Barclaycard points. Any MNetters signed up to Barclaycard points might like to know they're running a special offer on John Lewis vouchers right now, which means you get more voucher for your points (IYSWIM). Definitely worth checking out.

It wouldn't let me use an old nn, but I found the current one used by the person I'd like to nominate.

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 01-Oct-13 14:55:59

WaitMonkey

*RebeccaMumsnet*, now that's just cruel, taunting us like that.grin

What? tchgrin

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 01-Oct-13 14:58:49

BeerTricksPotter

It wouldn't let me use an old nn, but I found the current one used by the person I'd like to nominate.

Hi BTP,

We will take a look, thanks for flagging.

Sparklingbrook Tue 01-Oct-13 15:10:26

Oooh, I love this. So many people though. Is there a limit to how many nominations you can make?

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 01-Oct-13 15:14:05

BeerTricksPotter

It wouldn't let me use an old nn, but I found the current one used by the person I'd like to nominate.

Can you try again BTP? This should be fixed...

Thank you HQ, for organising this. It really is whatever the opposite of Beyond The Pale is.

You stars.

Cheets.

<<clink>>

Cheers.

Ykwim.

Sorry.

Hi Rebecca, yes, it's letting me nominate under the poster's old name now smile

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 01-Oct-13 16:41:42

BeerTricksPotter

Hi Rebecca, yes, it's letting me nominate under the poster's old name now smile

Hurrah!

FairyJen Tue 01-Oct-13 16:54:44

In our FAQ its days you cannot nominate someone who has been here less than a year but I don't know how long everyone has been here!

Will it let me know somehow if the person I want to nominate isn't eligible?

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 01-Oct-13 17:19:44

FairyJen

In our FAQ its days you cannot nominate someone who has been here less than a year but I don't know how long everyone has been here!

Will it let me know somehow if the person I want to nominate isn't eligible?

Please do nominate who you'd like and we'll very happily take a look.

Oh I love doing this!
And crying at the thread after.

Tee2072 Tue 01-Oct-13 18:24:20

Has this been stickied to Active? Because people were upset last year that they missed it as they have Christmas hidden like I do, Facebook brought me here.

grin

Yes good idea to sticky it in Active, maybe Chat too?

skyeskyeskye Tue 01-Oct-13 18:59:59

lovely idea and happy to take part for another year.

I agree it should be stickied in as many places as possible as a lot of people didn't know about it last year.

RandallPinkFloyd Tue 01-Oct-13 19:08:02

<happy sigh>

This couldn't be more perfectly timed smile

Sparklingbrook Tue 01-Oct-13 19:10:53

Can we nominate more than one?

FruOla Tue 01-Oct-13 19:38:09

I'm glad to have found this smile.

But a bit surprised it hasn't been 'stickied' somewhere.

And, yes, what Sparkling says, can we nominate more than one MNer?

Sparklingbrook Tue 01-Oct-13 19:43:07

You know the Talk Round Up that gets emailed? Could it be included in that? I feel like we need a weekly MN Newsletter these days.

FruOla Tue 01-Oct-13 19:55:08

It would be a good idea if this was 'stickied' here, in Christmas.

Plus, duplicated and 'stickied' in AIBU and Chat.

Every single year, after the 'required date', people always say "if only I knew".

What do you think MNHQ?

timidviper Tue 01-Oct-13 20:43:53

This sounds like a really churlish question but I don't mean it to be.

Is there a way when donating of discriminating between those who need the help, have had a tough year, etc and those who have just been luffly? It is a lovely compliment to get a nomination but those lovely folk would probably be chuffed with any token gift.

For example. Suppose I had £50 to donate, I would happily donate that to someone who needs it but think, no matter how fluffy and lovely someone is, I would not necessarily want to give that to somebody who is comfortable, I would sooner give a token gift and donate the rest to the local food bank or something

Jux Tue 01-Oct-13 21:06:48

Stickied in Active too, or maybe stickied at the top of every board.

MollyBerry Tue 01-Oct-13 21:25:28

tchgrin

littlemonkeychops Tue 01-Oct-13 22:39:57

Oh yay! I missed the boat last year on this. Can't wait to join in the warm fuzzy-ness :-)

grin

nominated, she is a gem of a lady smile

HugAndRoll Tue 01-Oct-13 22:59:24

I've nominated and volunteered. I love Christmas.

Solo Tue 01-Oct-13 23:50:16

Already?!!! shock

MNPlovesthesunshine Wed 02-Oct-13 00:30:02

Donated

YoniMatopoeia Wed 02-Oct-13 05:30:34

Solo - it kicks off in late September/early October most years. The organising of it is massive [twitches at memory]

Will donate once the laptop is fired up.

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Wed 02-Oct-13 07:14:42

I've nominated two most wonderful people smile I do hope that they are picked. One has made a big difference to my life in ways that they don't know (and will probably never know) and the other is very supportive on various health related threads although we have rarely exchanged messages, I think she is a star.

Sparklingbrook Wed 02-Oct-13 07:16:52

So how many nominations are allowed?

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 02-Oct-13 09:09:51

Sparklingbrook

Can we nominate more than one?

Yes you can but we do ask that you consider very carefully as we don't want to end up with more nominations than donations. This hasn't happened as yet <crosses fingers>

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 02-Oct-13 09:11:53

Sparklingbrook

You know the Talk Round Up that gets emailed? Could it be included in that? I feel like we need a weekly MN Newsletter these days.

<Ahem> We have a weekly newsletter, called Parenting News, it comes out on a Thursday, you can sign up and catch up here

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 02-Oct-13 09:13:17

Jux

Stickied in Active too, or maybe stickied at the top of every board.

it's stickied in active, in latest and also in the newsletter. We will be sticking in Christmas and Site stuff too.
Please feel free to spread the word on the boards tchgrin

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 02-Oct-13 09:40:11

timidviper

This sounds like a really churlish question but I don't mean it to be.

Is there a way when donating of discriminating between those who need the help, have had a tough year, etc and those who have just been luffly? It is a lovely compliment to get a nomination but those lovely folk would probably be chuffed with any token gift.

For example. Suppose I had £50 to donate, I would happily donate that to someone who needs it but think, no matter how fluffy and lovely someone is, I would not necessarily want to give that to somebody who is comfortable, I would sooner give a token gift and donate the rest to the local food bank or something

yy timid, we ask for a reason for a nomination. As an example if a poster is nominated for being an all round good egg and giving fab advice we would try and match with someone who has offered a gift for the MNetter or a voucher. If someone is nominated for having a difficult time financially/ emotionally etc, we would try and treat them and their DC if possible.

It is a juggling act but we try and make sure that those in financial hardship get the food/gift vouchers first.

It is important to note that not everyone comes back to say thank you, we do encourage it but if you are going to donate we can't tell you who your gift went to or sometimes even if it has been received, so please do think carefully and do not give any more than you can afford to give freely.

Sparklingbrook Wed 02-Oct-13 09:48:36

Sorry RebeccaMNHQ. sad I think I had a mad week of deleting topics and saying no receiving stuff. 'Parenting news' doesn't sound very exciting. blush

Tee2072 Wed 02-Oct-13 09:55:37

It's riveting Sparkling. Truly.

Sparklingbrook Wed 02-Oct-13 09:57:52

It needs a more attention grabbing title IMO Tee. Not all people on here are parents either. Mumsnet Weekly News would be better.

I have signed up for it and wait with interest.....

Tee2072 Wed 02-Oct-13 10:02:32

That's a good point, Sparkling.

Sparklingbrook Wed 02-Oct-13 10:04:52

Or it could be Mumsnet! in the style of Hello!. smile

Tee2072 Wed 02-Oct-13 10:22:33

How about Daily Mumsnet? We could take back the meaning of DM in the publishing world.

Mogz Wed 02-Oct-13 10:22:57

Yay, its my first Christmas here, just nominated someone and I'm so excited about it!

RatherBeOnThePiste Wed 02-Oct-13 10:51:19

Morning brew and oh <happy sigh> love the Christmas Appeal.

Sparkling, you'll not regret signing up for the newsletter, tis an absolute highlight

moldingsunbeams Wed 02-Oct-13 12:05:48

I know this might be cheeky but is it possible to ask to be matched with a proper regular poster?

I am keen to do this however last year I was matched with a not so regular poster and burnt, royal mail lost a couple of peoples packages, I didnt know they had not recieved it yet as it was still before Christmas and myself and another lady were attacked on the Christmas thread and called rich snobs stuck in our big houses who couldn't be arsed to bother and didnt give a damn about others or words along those lines by a lady who had only recieved from one of the three matches.
At the time I was living in a one bed flat with my child after being made homeless from a only slightly bigger flat and had only donated as I had recieved some vouchers/gift that my daughter couldnt use due to her sn. I would have sent another gift had I known it had not arrived.

I want to donate but I would much rather it go to someone who was a regular well known poster as it really put a downer on an already crap time.

missorinoco Wed 02-Oct-13 12:22:23

Do you need to know how much we will donate? And if so do you want me to PM someone as I have already signed up.

Tee2072 Wed 02-Oct-13 12:28:59

That's horrible molding. So not what this is about!

moldingsunbeams Wed 02-Oct-13 12:56:28

I know Tee sad Its not put me off donating but I would much rather be matched with someone who posts regularly and understands what the scheme is about or at least posts enough to know to have informed Mumsnet that they have not recieved so I could sort out.

My own dd only gets presents from me and my parents so I know how important it is hence not being put off. smile

Tee2072 Wed 02-Oct-13 13:07:28

I'm so glad you're not put off. smile

We need hats. At least for this thread. [hgrin]

Tee2072 Wed 02-Oct-13 13:07:34

Damn.

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 02-Oct-13 13:09:59

moldingsunbeams

I know this might be cheeky but is it possible to ask to be matched with a proper regular poster?

I am keen to do this however last year I was matched with a not so regular poster and burnt, royal mail lost a couple of peoples packages, I didnt know they had not recieved it yet as it was still before Christmas and myself and another lady were attacked on the Christmas thread and called rich snobs stuck in our big houses who couldn't be arsed to bother and didnt give a damn about others or words along those lines by a lady who had only recieved from one of the three matches.
At the time I was living in a one bed flat with my child after being made homeless from a only slightly bigger flat and had only donated as I had recieved some vouchers/gift that my daughter couldnt use due to her sn. I would have sent another gift had I known it had not arrived.

I want to donate but I would much rather it go to someone who was a regular well known poster as it really put a downer on an already crap time.

Hi molding,

That is very sad to hear but generally speaking, very rare. We will note under this circumstance but we can't promise anything due to the anonymity involved.

Obviously, we can liaise where possible but we can't make any promises.

If you are in a position to donate, please don't let this bad experience put you off, but we can't really deal with matching on this level as it's a logistical nightmare - apologies.

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 02-Oct-13 13:10:57

Tee2072

I'm so glad you're not put off. smile

We need hats. At least for this thread. [hgrin]

tchgrin arf

Tee2072 Wed 02-Oct-13 13:12:20

Mean, Rebecca. Really really mean. [pout]

SpiritOfTheBuskersCat Wed 02-Oct-13 13:13:27

This is my first doing this. Wasn't aware of the appeal previously. I think it's a brilliant idea

[sgrin]

FairyJen Wed 02-Oct-13 13:30:10

shock rebeccamumsnet are you bullying posters? wink

moldingsunbeams Wed 02-Oct-13 13:30:55

Fair enough smile

Will still donate but to any recievee if you have not recieved something please please tell Mumsnet so I can sort it, or at least provide me with a huge house on a hill so I can look down my nose and be a snob and not be arsed if royal mail mess up wink

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 02-Oct-13 13:56:35

FairyJen

shock rebeccamumsnet are you bullying posters? wink

tchshock

Tee2072 Wed 02-Oct-13 14:36:02

She's not bullying me. She's just showing off!

[fgrin]

Tee2072 Wed 02-Oct-13 14:36:10

Bugger.

Mouseface Wed 02-Oct-13 14:53:18

Last year I received some lovely treats because I was nominated, this year, I am Paying. It. Forward. and have nominated some well deserving MNers. smile

Some who have lost their loved ones (some again) sad, some who have helped me personally, some who have inspired me to make a real difference to help others, and some who I simply luff grin

Thank you MNHQ thanks xxx thanks

And, just so you know, if I could, I'd nominate each and everyone of you there at MNHQ, who work so hard both on the frontline and behind the scenes, all year round, all day long.

MN has literally saved my life in days gone by, and without it, and the people who post here (some have now become my real friends), I know that my own, my family's and my wonderful son's - Nemo - lives, would be far from what they are today smile xxx

Haribojoe Wed 02-Oct-13 16:08:56

So excited to see this thread, one of my most favourite parts of Christmas.

Am so moved every year by the huge kindness shown to those in need/who are deserving. smile

Armadale Wed 02-Oct-13 17:28:45

I have been on MN since 2011, but the first Christmas I didn't know about it, and last year I didn't understand how it all worked, (I must have missed the introductory thread) so this year I've been waiting grin

I knew immediately who I wanted to nominate, and I don't think I've ever had an actual conversation on a thread with this person, I've just admired their kind replies to people on a particular topic from afar- this is such a good idea to thank all the lovely posters like her who do it just because they are lovely, and huge thanks for organising it all MNHQ.

Good grief already?

It's still 22 degrees here........

Alibabaandthe40nappies Wed 02-Oct-13 18:12:16

I normally won't engage with Christmas until the beginning of November, but I will make an exception for this thread.

Love, love the Christmas appeal. Community spirit at it's best.

I offered a black bin liner of good but used 3yr old girls clothes, and a black bin liner of good but used baby clothes last year as I couldn't afford much in the way of bought gifts.

I was matched with someone really lovely who said she needed exactly that. smile

I enjoyed ironing every single one of those items for the first time in their lives and adding a small token bought gift for the Mother.

It's really not about the money.

I also received a couple of gifts myself to put under the tree for my children at a time when money was really short. It included a small box of chocolates for me. Magic.

notapizzaeater Wed 02-Oct-13 18:54:55

I've registered but could we not have a box for more than one child, I missed it last year but the year before I sent to a brother and sister and a mum in the same family.

How did I miss this? I've been here for years confused
Won't be missing it this year smile

MrsManshape Wed 02-Oct-13 19:31:49

Donated and Nominated smile

FruOla Wed 02-Oct-13 19:36:15

Nominated and donated too smile

timidviper Wed 02-Oct-13 20:16:07

molding I remember some of that going on last year, sorry you had it at such a tough time.

donated and nominated, this is my favourite bit of mumsnet (after woollyhugs) I was so shocked to received my wonderful secret santa last year, it really made a tough time seem brighter. I hope I can do the same to a deserving mumsnetter this year.

Taking part this year for the first time - feeling christmassy now! grin

Marking my place as I intend to donate again this year, I just don't know what yet! smile I loved doing it last year, I had great fun putting it together grin

Solo Thu 03-Oct-13 00:54:53

YoniMatopoeia I know! I was just meaning that it's ^that time again ~ already!!!* smile

Solo Thu 03-Oct-13 00:56:13

Oh! you know it was meant to be like this.
Easily confused!!

blondieminx Thu 03-Oct-13 08:30:57

<happy sigh> I love the MN Secret Santa smile sitting down with a large baileys hot choc to read the thank you thread and have a sniffle at it...It's such a lovely community to be a part of, and i'm proud to be a viper with you all!

mouseface what a lovely lovely post, you have made me well up already!

molding sad what a shame, so glad you haven't been put off! Hopefully this year you will have a much nicer experience with it all x

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 03-Oct-13 09:39:09

Thanks everyone, this is so lovely and we just couldn't do it without you lot. <sniff>

InkleWinkle Thu 03-Oct-13 10:36:20

Hasn't even started yet & Starlight's made me cry already!

Nominated and signed up for a donation. I love the MN Christmas Appeal.

scarlotti Thu 03-Oct-13 13:09:04

Hooray, finally I've found this in time to take part!! I was amazed and humbled to get something a few years back when I went through a really rough time. It really did brighten my year. I also struggled to thank one person as i had no number to message, so to those that this has happened to, please don't feel unappreciated.

Am so looking forward to paying this back this year. Can we be a donor even if we don't have anyone to nominate?

THERhubarb Thu 03-Oct-13 13:09:41

Sandy what are your plans for dealing with the Post Office? They are getting very strict about people picking up parcels from the sorting office, requiring photo ID and I know from previous years that some have been arsey with mumsnetters, not letting them collect parcels that were marked to 'A Mumsnetter' because they obviously didn't have ID in that name.

Moulding - it's funny but I just did a thread on people not being grateful, not that it was the point of your tale but I do feel that some people expect huge bundles of brand new stuff and hardly mention the small gifts that some of us may have made a real effort on. That woman you sent to really should have been grateful to have been nominated at all and receiving a parcel of goodies let alone abusing others.

When this was all first set up many posters would donate old toys and clothes but there does seem to be more pressure now to buy new things as that is what everyone else seems to be doing. I know a few posters who did donate second-hand items and didn't so much as receive an acknowledgement for them.

I think it needs to be reiterated that any gift, no matter how small is most welcome and that recipients should not expect to receive brand new gifts, but should welcome used toys and clothes too because they are all sent in kindness and with love. I'm sure there are many posters who can give something but may be put off because they don't think that what they have is good enough.

and moulding - I hope your situation is now better?

THERhubarb Thu 03-Oct-13 13:12:38

molding sorry and Starlight, yes that is what I'm taking about! So pleased they were gratefully received. I often wish mine were still little as I always had loads of clothes and toys to give away then - no-one wants used teenager clothes!

Marisson546 Thu 03-Oct-13 13:19:57

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

ifyourehoppyandyouknowit Thu 03-Oct-13 13:37:10

Question: does it need to be 'gifty' things donated. I've got lots of lovely baby clothes (like, immaculate condition) that were barely worn and I wonder if someone who is struggling might like those? Sorry if this has been asked before, only skimmed thread as at work and should be, er, working!

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 03-Oct-13 13:49:47

Rhubarb I remember that woman posting about not receiving all the parcels she was meant to. It made me wonder how on earth she got nominated in the first place because she was clearly a nasty, grasping person.

I think it is unfortunate that there have been one or two posters over the last couple of years who were extremely detailed and vocal about the huge amount of stuff they received, a lot of which was actually outside of the appeal because people fell for a sob story. That is bound to have a negative effect on some people's expectations.

THERhubarb Thu 03-Oct-13 13:53:20

Alibaba - not just the recipients, a lot of posters are also very vocal about the huge parcels of expensive gifts they are giving. That just piles the pressure on other posters to do the same and its wrong. I don't think anyone should reveal what they are giving, if at all. That way no-one feels obliged to fit in with what the rest are doing.

Sorry am new to this but what kind of things can you donate, i was nominated last year under a different username after an awful time and id really like to give something back. It wont be anything major but i would love to brighten someones christmas smile

moldingsunbeams Thu 03-Oct-13 14:02:05

I agree with starlight about the not posting what you have sent, I was going to donate year before last and was put off by posts of boxes and boxes and high value vouchers because I wanted to help but felt my recievee would be dissapointed when she saw what I had sent compared to others.

THERhubarb Thu 03-Oct-13 14:05:59

molding yes that is my point, too many posters are too keen to brag about all the gifts they have sent which are preventing other posters from being involved. I do think that MNHQ should encourage posters to be more discreet and perhaps think twice before posting what they are gifting.

If it makes you feel better, I have felt the same way, especially last year.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 03-Oct-13 14:07:34

Rhubarb I agree completely.

I'm proud to brag about my bags of second hand clothes smile. I never EVER iron for any of my own children but did a shed load for my secret nominee and enjoyed it. It took two evenings. It was what I could give and luckily the recipient was lovelier that she really needed to be about it.

I hope it made a difference as did the box of cake mix I received one year did for me.

THERhubarb Thu 03-Oct-13 14:13:43

Starlight grin

You are so lovely!

moldingsunbeams Thu 03-Oct-13 14:15:46

Sorry it was Rhubarb I agreed with about not being vocal about what your posting.

THERhubarb Thu 03-Oct-13 14:23:56

Yeah Starlight so quit boasting! grin

This is what worries me about donating, i can buy something small and make things but it wouldnt be anything costly or epic as im not very well off. would just like to spread the cheer so to speak

nickelbabe Thu 03-Oct-13 14:30:01

Good idea Rhubabr put about the Royal Mail - even though my postman refuses to give me letters addressed to me because he thinks I should have DH's surname, therefore they can't be addressed to me grin
(this is banter, he's not serious i hope ), he says over and over again "we deliver to addresses not people - if the person isn't at the address, pop them back in the post box, but we have to deliver them", which means that if we follow that rule (he is also a jobsworth, so he knows this stuff), then the Callers' Office ONLY needs proof of address, not name, so if you took a photo ID that had your address on it, then you would be okay to collect your pressie.

But I think it would be wise to tell the RM exactly what's going on, because MNers are spending a lot of money with them because of this scheme.

moldingsunbeams Thu 03-Oct-13 14:31:20

grin

Starlight is right too of course.

When things were at there worst what I needed most was practical things like shoes and clothes and coats for both me and dd, someone on here sent my dd some sandals and flip flops and dd was overjoyed. I wouldnt have give a rats whether they were new or used!

THERhubarb Thu 03-Oct-13 14:39:37

How are you now molding?

btw, I really DID get a box of cake mix. And I really WAS grateful.

Not that I especially needed cake mix of course, - but I did need a cheery act of kindness.

i like cake mix , i received last year and it was a lovely suprise, the kids were well chuffed they had a gift off a stranger smile ive donated but im wondering if its a bit pants now :/ have messaged molding to ask if she thinks so!

THERhubarb Thu 03-Oct-13 14:48:38

MNHQ as well as making sure the PO aren't arses again, is there any chance you can request that posters don't reveal what they are gifting please? I'm sure this would encourage more donators and would ease the pressure significantly.

No allusions to spenditure either or how big the box of goodies is. Some people can only give a little but their contribution should not be dismissed as it's just as valuable and they won't be the ones shouting about how much they've contributed.

nickelbabe Thu 03-Oct-13 14:51:34

now i'm jealous cos i want cake mix envy

moldingsunbeams Thu 03-Oct-13 14:59:12

Supermario as I have replied my kids would have loved that and so would most children! I think its a lovely idea and I am sure the family who recieved them loved them too.

Rhubarb much better thanks, still in a pokey too small flat rather than the mansion Mumsnet said I had but at least its a permanent pokey hole and I am not faced with dread of worrying were we will be living the next month. smile

:D

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 03-Oct-13 15:49:40

THERhubarb

Sandy what are your plans for dealing with the Post Office? They are getting very strict about people picking up parcels from the sorting office, requiring photo ID and I know from previous years that some have been arsey with mumsnetters, not letting them collect parcels that were marked to 'A Mumsnetter' because they obviously didn't have ID in that name.

Moulding - it's funny but I just did a thread on people not being grateful, not that it was the point of your tale but I do feel that some people expect huge bundles of brand new stuff and hardly mention the small gifts that some of us may have made a real effort on. That woman you sent to really should have been grateful to have been nominated at all and receiving a parcel of goodies let alone abusing others.

When this was all first set up many posters would donate old toys and clothes but there does seem to be more pressure now to buy new things as that is what everyone else seems to be doing. I know a few posters who did donate second-hand items and didn't so much as receive an acknowledgement for them.

I think it needs to be reiterated that any gift, no matter how small is most welcome and that recipients should not expect to receive brand new gifts, but should welcome used toys and clothes too because they are all sent in kindness and with love. I'm sure there are many posters who can give something but may be put off because they don't think that what they have is good enough.

and moulding - I hope your situation is now better?

Hi THERhubarb,
Thanks for letting us know about The Post office.
We unfortunately don't have any control over The Post Office but we feel it's important that the Christmas Appeal remains anonymous. ID will provide proof of the address, so we hope this should be enough.

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 03-Oct-13 15:52:07

HopALongOn

Question: does it need to be 'gifty' things donated. I've got lots of lovely baby clothes (like, immaculate condition) that were barely worn and I wonder if someone who is struggling might like those? Sorry if this has been asked before, only skimmed thread as at work and should be, er, working!

We would be thrilled with all sorts. Baby clothes sound perfect, thank you!

For the vast majority of people I would think it's the fact that someone has taken time to nominate and someone else to send a little something through the post that counts, not the amount.

Have nominated, marking my place so I can have a think about what i can give someone smile

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 03-Oct-13 16:09:04

THERhubarb

MNHQ as well as making sure the PO aren't arses again, is there any chance you can request that posters don't reveal what they are gifting please? I'm sure this would encourage more donators and would ease the pressure significantly.

No allusions to spenditure either or how big the box of goodies is. Some people can only give a little but their contribution should not be dismissed as it's just as valuable and they won't be the ones shouting about how much they've contributed.

Hi again THERhubarb,
You're right it's a shame if folk feel their gifts are not enough, as we are so grateful for all the donations that are pledged. It's such a heartfelt gift exchange so it would be in the spirit of the appeal if folk were discrete about how much they've given.

FruOla Thu 03-Oct-13 16:46:00

Well, of course, MNHQ aren't responsible for gifts going astray through Royal Mail (or whoever). Although I quite understand it might be difficult retrieving something from the local sorting office (or other delivery service) - after all, none of us has ID saying we're The Mumsnetter Of The House, although I accept that ID with the house address should be acceptable.

I get the impression that, last year, a few gift vouchers (which were posted inside normal Christmas cards) might have gone missing because they were addressed "To The MNer etc", but not sent Registered Post/Special Delivery/Signed For - or whatever.

I doubt MNHQ could do anything tbh, the passport office couldn't do anything about the postman refusing to give me my new passport in my married name on the basis that I didn't have any ID in that name to show him to get it hmm and I imagine their client base is pretty significant.

MrsDeVere Thu 03-Oct-13 17:43:28

What do you mean you don't have any control over the Post Office? shock

THIS is what I love about Christmas. I did suggest after last years debacle that those who are nominated are aware of their number so that when the donators are looking to see if their parcel they have lovingly put together has arrived they know they haven't been missed out. I still don't know if the gift I sent arrived and if not I would have claimed from Royal Mail the feckers

MurderOfBanshees Thu 03-Oct-13 17:51:08

I do love this, really hope the nominations and gifts bring a smile to some MNers faces. God knows there's a lot who deserve it!

I will have to think a bit longer about whether I can donate, is there a cut off time to sign up?

MurderOfBanshees Thu 03-Oct-13 17:51:34

Ignore me, I should try reading the OP really blush

If you want to know if a parcel has arrived you should send recorded. It's nice to have an acknowledgement but it should be an obligation.

cakesonatrain Thu 03-Oct-13 19:55:55

Ooh, I missed this last year, so glad to be aware in good time. Have nominated and donated smile

Starlight, I appreciate what you are saying but there are nominees who come on every year who feel bad having to mention the fact their parcel hasn't arrived. It happens every year.
If the nominee knew their number from the start it might save the embarrassment of having to ask and appear grabbing/greedy, which they aren't but they are emotions which are expressed

acsec Thu 03-Oct-13 21:19:43

I really enjoyed being part of this last year smile So happy to be in it again!

IwishIwasmoreorganised Thu 03-Oct-13 21:25:23

It's the beginning of October and far too soon to be thinking about Christmas with only one exception - the MN Christmas Appeal [fgrin]

I'd love to donate some vouchers to anyone - UK or overseas but I am technically inept.

How could I donate online vouchers to overseas MN'ers - which companies offer that?

I'll wait for a reply before posting on the Donation Page.

jackstini Thu 03-Oct-13 21:41:36

Now this means the Christmas season has begun! - done smile

Elsiequadrille Thu 03-Oct-13 21:55:49

I've intended to do this every year, but have only now finally signed up to donate!

Dontlookbehindyou Thu 03-Oct-13 23:11:07

That's my nominations sent in, all very much deserving nice things for being lovely lovely people when I had a terrible time and was ridiculously poor.
Still not 100% back on track but were paying the rent and everyone gets to eat at every mealtime! (Whoot lol) going to discuss with Dh what we can manage to donate. I'll figure something out!
I can bake, would cookies work?

SleepPleaseSleep Fri 04-Oct-13 09:32:48

Sorry for being thick, say I'm abroad and would like to donate an online, amazon actually, gift voucher, do you send me a personal email address for a particular person when you've worked it all out? Or is there a central email address that can magically pass them on?
Any way I can stay anonymous while doing so? If I have to send it to a particular person, I can't see a way for that. Or has anyone got any better suggestions for online gift vouchers accessible from abroad that can remain anonymous?

SleepPleaseSleep Fri 04-Oct-13 09:48:23

Have just found email address to ask properly. Sorry. Thick and sleep deprived.

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Fri 04-Oct-13 10:41:03

MrsDeVere

What do you mean you don't have any control over the Post Office? shock

blush

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Fri 04-Oct-13 10:49:07

SleepPleaseSleep

Sorry for being thick, say I'm abroad and would like to donate an online, amazon actually, gift voucher, do you send me a personal email address for a particular person when you've worked it all out? Or is there a central email address that can magically pass them on?
Any way I can stay anonymous while doing so? If I have to send it to a particular person, I can't see a way for that. Or has anyone got any better suggestions for online gift vouchers accessible from abroad that can remain anonymous?

Hi SleepPleaseSleep
We email you a home address, and a MN code. Everyone stays completely anonymous.

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Fri 04-Oct-13 10:51:14

Dontlookbehindyou

That's my nominations sent in, all very much deserving nice things for being lovely lovely people when I had a terrible time and was ridiculously poor.
Still not 100% back on track but were paying the rent and everyone gets to eat at every mealtime! (Whoot lol) going to discuss with Dh what we can manage to donate. I'll figure something out!
I can bake, would cookies work?

Oh yeah! Sounds great, thank you! <dreams of being a good baker>

FairyJen Fri 04-Oct-13 11:17:12

No control over Royal Mail?? shock

Well I think that's mnhq's new year resolution sorted don't you? grin

WingDefence Fri 04-Oct-13 11:45:49

I was shocked to be nominated last year and I'd not even heard of the appeal so I shall definitely be donating and nominating this year. thanks

flowery Fri 04-Oct-13 12:03:37

I was also shocked and touched to be nominated last year so am paying it forward. Exciting!

ScarerAndFuck Fri 04-Oct-13 17:29:05

Can people sending just put an address on the gift, without a name or putting 'A Mumsnetter' on it?

Surely the post office can't argue with someone who has I.D for the address if there's no name on the parcel? Can they?

I've emailed them to ask.

RatherBeOnThePiste Fri 04-Oct-13 17:37:54

When I send Woolly Hugs wool out, if I don't have a proper name, that's exactly what i do.

RatherBeOnThePiste Fri 04-Oct-13 17:38:50

for that reason, sorry, went too soon there, then folk can just use proof of address

RibenaFiend Fri 04-Oct-13 18:11:08

YAY!!! My favourite!!!

FruOla Fri 04-Oct-13 18:51:49

"Can people sending just put an address on the gift, without a name or putting 'A Mumsnetter' on it?"

"Surely the post office can't argue with someone who has I.D for the address if there's no name on the parcel? Can they?"

That sounds like a good idea smile

FruOla Fri 04-Oct-13 18:56:13

BTW, that wasn't a P/A smile (blush)

(why do some people think the smile is P/A anyway? confused)

I mean that is a good idea! Just send to the address, without a name.

ScarerAndFuck Fri 04-Oct-13 19:20:45

I know it wasn't grin. Grins are fine I hope. I think it's usually only seen as P / A if it's accompanied by a 'dear' and/or a HTH at the end.

elfycat Fri 04-Oct-13 20:22:08

Does anyone know how the post feels about 'To the Occupier/MN'?

Then the recipient will see the MN and know but the PO should be happy with address as proof should be...

MissStrawberry Fri 04-Oct-13 21:33:52

The thank you thread is lovely but maybe it should be part of the deal that the recipient lets MNHQ know that the parcel has arrived. That way if for whatever reason the recipient does not want to post on the thread they have at least told MNHQ it has arrived and MNHQ can let the sender know. Making it registered adds to the cost and not everyone to afford that on top of the gift and normal postage.

I offered to donate one year then had a panic as I had 4 to buy for and I wasn't expecting that so I could only send small things. I didn't get a message to say it had arrived never mind a thank you and it made me feel crap tbh that what I had sent wasn't enough.

ClaudiaCMitts Fri 04-Oct-13 21:44:56

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

Sparklingbrook Fri 04-Oct-13 21:45:51

Spambot reported.

AmberLeaf Sat 05-Oct-13 11:45:30

I get what people are saying about the 'size' of gifts sent.

Year before last I donated, last year I offered to, but then my tumble dryer broke and I had to pull out as due to having to replace it I wouldn't be able to afford the secret santa gifts.

I didn't feel a small token thing would be 'enough' after reading about some of the amazing stuff some people have been able to donate.

I like timidvipers suggestion about small token lovely things for people who get nominated just for being 'Luffly' and the more helpful life/day saving stuff for those who really need it.

MNHQ if I can't manage to donate this year, is it ok to nominate still?

nickelbabe Sat 05-Oct-13 13:23:37

"recorded signed for" costs about £1 more to post than normal post (I've just checked and even for a 1kg parcel, it's £1.20 more)

and if you send it through a courier (eg Hermes who are currently the cheapest), they sign for it.

that's one way to keep track if you're worried.
I would always recommend sending vouchers signed for.

FCEK Sat 05-Oct-13 15:46:36

What if you have a friend you know uses MN but you don't know their username or login details to nominate?

Also can people nominate themselves, like before?

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Sat 05-Oct-13 16:15:40

I don't think people should be able to nominate themselves, IMO that is akin to asking for presents and is rude.

Sparklingbrook Sat 05-Oct-13 16:17:25

Do people really nominate themselves? shock

Solo Sat 05-Oct-13 16:28:18

I nominated my children one year blush. I had nothing much to give them (Had spent £10 in a charity shop for them both) and just asked for something small for them. MNHQ told me not to worry, that I had been nominated already.
If people that have nothing feel that they can't ask for their Dc's to have a little something...well, that's just a little sad sad

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Sat 05-Oct-13 17:13:27

I think it is fine to nominate your children, I can understand why people do that as I've had to buy Xmas presents at charity shops in the past when I've had little money (not now, in the past) and would have done just about anything to make sure they had Xmas presents. I wouldn't do it but I think it is understandable really. Just not nominating yourself.

Sparklingbrook Sat 05-Oct-13 17:16:50

Oh I see-for your DC. Nothing wrong with that.

I was thinking adults. Sorry.

Solo Sat 05-Oct-13 17:21:34

I wouldn't nominate myself.
A few years ago, I got a voucher through for all of us, but I spent it all on the Dc's. Last year, I got gifts but the Dc's did not. I was very grateful, but I did feel guilty that the kids hadn't got a surprise gift. Ds noticed, Dd did not. As I said to Ds, it's not an entitlement.

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Sat 05-Oct-13 17:28:02

I would have felt guilty as well. I'd be mortified if I was nominated and somebody sent something for me instead of something for the DCs. I would be mortified to be nominated anyway to be honest.

moldingsunbeams Sat 05-Oct-13 18:02:07

Nominating children is fine imo.

I wouldn't nominate myself.

I don't think I would seek out to nominate a friend who I didn't know user name for or details for, I think I would probably just get them a gift if I could afford.

THERhubarb Sat 05-Oct-13 21:04:49

Can I just make a quick request that people don't forget the local homeless shelters? Many of them do Christmas lunches and are very grateful for donations no matter how small. Also Women's Refuge also need donations and if you can't find details of your local one then the Samaritan's Army take donations and they give them to local families they feel are in need. So please, don't forget those local families who may not be Mumsnetters but are in real need this Christmas. This government has managed to ensure that so many more families are in poverty and Christmas is an especially hard time for them. Even if all you can give is a bar of chocolate, trust me, it will be gratefully received by someone.

cakesonatrain Sat 05-Oct-13 23:02:47

I have a question.
Do the nominees get told why they've been nominated?

Solo Sun 06-Oct-13 01:16:20

No they don't cakes.

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Sun 06-Oct-13 06:35:32

I think it'd be quite nice to know why you were nominated. I have nominated two people and I hoped that they would get to see why they were nominated.
Do we get to know if the people we have nominated have been picked?

cakesonatrain Sun 06-Oct-13 07:26:23

Yes, I was thinking it would be nice if the nominees got told "you've been nominated for being generally fab" or "some people have noticed that you're having a tough time and think you deserve a treat" or something similar and non-patronising!

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Sun 06-Oct-13 07:47:11

Well, how about you PM a different Mumsnetter and tell them why you nominated X and then they can tell them on your behalf without them knowing who nominated them?

Ragwort Sun 06-Oct-13 09:07:41

I would echo THERhubarb's post (I have been agreeing with her for about 12 years grin). I prefer to support my local women's refuge and homeless centre as I feel a bit uneasy about the Mumsnet Christmas gift thread.

I misunderstood it last year as I thought you gave to the person you nominated but I was matched with someone (whom I have never heard of despite being on her for years grin). I sent a modest gift - £10 M & S voucher & chocolates but it was never acknowledged. Yes, I KNOW you don't do this for a 'thank you' but it would have been nice.

Equally I sometimes see people receiving gifts then boasting on another thread about buying mobile phones or other expensive gifts for their own children at Christmas hmm. I would much rather a 'general' Mumsnet appeal to support a specific cause that is in tune with Mumsnet ideals & values (whatever that might be grin).

Sparklingbrook Sun 06-Oct-13 09:13:26

I nominate and donate. I know that my donation doesn't go to that person, but it helps to imagine it does IYSWIM-even though someone else sent it.

I have no idea of the financial status of anyone I nominate. I don't think that's the point really.

cakesonatrain Sun 06-Oct-13 09:19:05

I'm not desperate to tell them, Katy, I just wondered, and thought it would be nice.

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Sun 06-Oct-13 09:42:47

Sparkling that's a nice way to look at it. I have to confess to not having donated but I can't afford it. I think it goes beyond the financial situation of the individual too - I have nominated two people for reasons that are nothing to do with that but simply because they have both done some lovely stuff and I'd want to buy them a present IRL if I could.
I feel bad at not having donated, however I know I will get a few early Xmas presents and I will be putting the majority of those in a box for the local homeless shelter and hope that they are appreciated.

Sparklingbrook Sun 06-Oct-13 09:51:31

Yes, that's it Katy they could be millionaires but have given kind, lovely advice etc.

it isn't always because they are having a rough time that they are nominated.

flowery Sun 06-Oct-13 10:01:40

" I was matched with someone (whom I have never heard of despite being on her for years"

I didn't think donors got told the MN nickname of the person they sent to? confused

AmberLeaf Sun 06-Oct-13 10:16:34

They don't. But the recipient may post on the thank you thread in their own name.

Actually just reading that post, she says there was no thank you, so Im as confused as you are!

Sparklingbrook Sun 06-Oct-13 10:25:57

Just because you haven't heard of them doesn't mean they aren't deserving. I have so many topics hidden. I would have no idea who is an all round great person in Relationships/Breastfeeding/Special Needs for example.

hmm

Solo Sun 06-Oct-13 10:44:30

Ragwort you didn't also send a book did you? because if you did, that was me. And I did post a thank you, but that thank you was never acknowledged.

MrsDeVere Sun 06-Oct-13 11:26:02

The MN Christmas Appeal is lovely.
I think it is more of a Secret Santa than a charity appeal.

To some recipients it may be the only gift they get that year, to others it might not be. But to everyone it is an acknowledgment of their contribution to MN and a reminder that they matter.

Income and circumstances make no difference in that context.

I was one of the few who didn't get a thank you last year. It would have been nice but there are lots of reasons why it might not have happened. Only one of those is that the recipient is ungrateful.

BIWIZ Sun 06-Oct-13 11:38:54

Aw, please don't start complaining about the Christmas Appeal. It's a lovely thing, and an opportunity for people to help others and thank others.

If you don't want to take part, there is no obligation.

Sparklingbrook Sun 06-Oct-13 12:03:44

My thoughts exactly BIWI. When I donated for the first time last year I didn't even know there would be a thank you thread.

Please don't let everyone lose sight of what it's all about.

MissStrawberry Sun 06-Oct-13 13:20:24

The thank you thread also serves to let the sender know the parcel has arrived. If you don't get a thank you you also don't know if the parcel has been lost/stolen so you are left feeling a bit fed up as it might have been a stretch to donate and then it could have been wasted if the person never got it.

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Sun 06-Oct-13 13:25:43

I hope I didn't come across as complaining about it, it wasn't my intention if I did.

Ragwort Sun 06-Oct-13 13:26:14

Solo - no, I didn't send a book grin.

I think Mrs DeVere's comment is right, and something I should bear in mind blush - it is more of a 'secret santa' than a charity appeal. And although we shouldn't expect a thank you, as MissStrawberry says, it is nice to know if something has arrived.

rosyryan Sun 06-Oct-13 13:52:52

Have made my nomination <warm fuzzies>

Sparklingbrook Sun 06-Oct-13 13:54:33

Oh yes, nice to get a thank you-but the good bit is getting it together and sending it really.

nickelbabe Sun 06-Oct-13 19:12:38

I don't know why everyone's so hung yp on the acknowledgement.
I didn't get one last year, but then, I might have been thanked by someone who couldn't remember tgeir number, pr not thanked at all.
you know what? I don't care. I hope that the person liked the gift, and hope that they received it, but tjanks aren't necessary in an anonymous gift exchange.

AtYourCervix Sun 06-Oct-13 19:47:16

Lovely.

mulled wine Christmas cake and flowers

Sparklingbrook Sun 06-Oct-13 19:57:10

I agree nickel.
With Christmas coming does that mean your beautiful baby daughter will be two? shock

ThePlEWhoLovedMe Sun 06-Oct-13 20:01:04

Nickel

But acknowledgement allows the poster the know that the gift was received - it isnt about the thank you.

I have 'donated' for a couple of years now - last year was the first time I did not receive any acknowledgement and to be honest it felt shit not knowing if it was received.

Sparklingbrook Sun 06-Oct-13 20:06:16

What would you do if you knew the gift hadn't been received though? If you are worried send it Recorded/Signed for.

MissStrawberry Sun 06-Oct-13 20:11:35

It isn't about acknowledgement and bully for you for not being bothered. It is about knowing it has arrived and not being nicked.

I sent one year. Didn't get any message. Felt like it wasn't good enough. Maybe it was nicked. Who knows but it made me feel crap as I couldn't afford much.

Sparklingbrook Sun 06-Oct-13 20:13:56

Why should it have been nicked though MissS?

MissStrawberry Sun 06-Oct-13 20:36:20

Because sometimes that happens when you post things.

I have had things I have posted stolen and had things delivered to me taken too.

Sparklingbrook Sun 06-Oct-13 20:37:37

You need to send them 'Signed for' then MissS.

RatherBeOnThePiste Sun 06-Oct-13 20:43:09

Yes definitely signed for, you can then track too. Easily done. Peace of mind.

The Christmas Appeal is absolutely lovely, magic. Have donated, and thinking about nominations. Like to do the same of each iyswim.

And I love organising a present for a Mumsnetter that I don't know, but that someone else has thought of and nominated for whatever reason. Very special thing to do. The spirit of Christmas. <happy sigh>

sparkle101 Sun 06-Oct-13 20:51:58

Have donated. Many posters have helped me out more than they will know this year and want to say a huge thank you. smile

nickelbabe Sun 06-Oct-13 21:32:25

yy sparkly grin
a hunk of two year old grin

Sparklingbrook Sun 06-Oct-13 21:39:49

That has gone so fast nickel.

THERhubarb Mon 07-Oct-13 09:40:54

I do feel that the MN Secret Santa Appeal is a very good thing and definitely in the spirit of Christmas but I do feel that sometimes it can also go a bit over the top - I guess that's bound to happen with something that has now become so huge.

I agree that everyone who receives something should acknowledge it and I did notice on the Thank You thread last year that so many gushed about the more expensive gifts and perhaps mentioned in passing a less expensive gift by someone else or not at all, this led to many donators having to post to ask if their gifts had been received and worrying about whether it had got there or not.

This is what I meant about people NOT posting details of what or how much they were donating as it raises expectations and puts other people off donating lesser gifts.

I also think it would help if the donator knew why that person had been nominated because if that person has been nominated for say, being a good brick, yet that person is not short of cash then they might not require lots more toys for their dcs, yet might be really appreciative of some chocs for themselves, as a way of Mumsnet showing its collective gratitude to a poster who always makes time for others.

I don't know how people are matched up, but it really would help if the donators had some idea of why that person was nominated so they can buy accordingly. Do you see what I mean?

And whilst some Mumsnetters may be in real need at Christmas (and so many are because of governmental cuts) people shouldn't forget local food banks and shelters too which cater for the very desperate people.

Christmas can be such a hard time for so many people, not just in terms of hardship but also in terms of loss or displacement and this is where Mumsnet really comes into its own as posters are nominated for a wide range of reasons.

But every nominee should be reminded that a simple thank you can go a long way and every donator should be reminded that discretion is everything and it's not about how much you can give and advertising that fact on the board, but about the spirit of the thing. So stay anonymous and hold that warm fuzzy feeling you get inside as your reward.

MissStrawberry Mon 07-Oct-13 10:58:04

<applauds THERhubarb>

moldingsunbeams Mon 07-Oct-13 11:30:45

I agree with Rhubard whole heartedly.

If I was donating and knew it was to someone who had been a lovely person, gave great advice, helped etc I would donate very differently and probably send a gift set or wine and chocs or similar vouchers for something more as a treat, more frivillous (sp?) where as to someone really struggling who would appreciate a voucher for Christmas food, or local supermarket vouchers for clothes, presents to fill out what they have got their kids.

Thats not because I think those struggling should not have frivillous stuff but because I have been in that place and while fancy baths stuff, wine and fancy chocs etc would have been greatfully recieved and been very thankful for I would have felt guilty at having those things at a time we perhaps did not have enough food or winter coats or the dc had nothing much to open.

I know Mumsnet does ask what you have to donate so possibly thats how its matched.

I know Mumsnet

RebeccaMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 07-Oct-13 13:40:23

THERhubarb

I do feel that the MN Secret Santa Appeal is a very good thing and definitely in the spirit of Christmas but I do feel that sometimes it can also go a bit over the top - I guess that's bound to happen with something that has now become so huge.

I agree that everyone who receives something should acknowledge it and I did notice on the Thank You thread last year that so many gushed about the more expensive gifts and perhaps mentioned in passing a less expensive gift by someone else or not at all, this led to many donators having to post to ask if their gifts had been received and worrying about whether it had got there or not.

This is what I meant about people NOT posting details of what or how much they were donating as it raises expectations and puts other people off donating lesser gifts.

I also think it would help if the donator knew why that person had been nominated because if that person has been nominated for say, being a good brick, yet that person is not short of cash then they might not require lots more toys for their dcs, yet might be really appreciative of some chocs for themselves, as a way of Mumsnet showing its collective gratitude to a poster who always makes time for others.

I don't know how people are matched up, but it really would help if the donators had some idea of why that person was nominated so they can buy accordingly. Do you see what I mean?

And whilst some Mumsnetters may be in real need at Christmas (and so many are because of governmental cuts) people shouldn't forget local food banks and shelters too which cater for the very desperate people.

Christmas can be such a hard time for so many people, not just in terms of hardship but also in terms of loss or displacement and this is where Mumsnet really comes into its own as posters are nominated for a wide range of reasons.

But every nominee should be reminded that a simple thank you can go a long way and every donator should be reminded that discretion is everything and it's not about how much you can give and advertising that fact on the board, but about the spirit of the thing. So stay anonymous and hold that warm fuzzy feeling you get inside as your reward.

Hi all,

We start this in October as we manually match every single donation and nomination. It takes a long time. We do look at circumstance and we match accordingly. Sometimes we get it a bit wrong, but on the whole, we try and make it fair.

With regards to posting thanks, most people do - some don't.

A few years ago (some minor details changed to protect identities) we had two MNetters who were nominated. One who had been through a bereavement and another who had a very ill child. Neither of these MNetters posted to say thank you, we totally understood. The parent of the ill child spent Christmas and many months afterwards in hospital - the bereaved MNetter stopped posting.

There are circumstances where those in the worst positions cannot reply, we at HQ can look into it and make a judgement call at that time whether or not it is appropriate to ask them if they had received their gift. We didn't feel that was the case in these two circumstances.

We can't give you this info and from an internal POV, it can be frustrating. We can nod that it may not be possible for them to be in touch right now, but we can't confirm receipt. I will stress that this is not a regular occurrence. Please do mail us if you are concerned and we can take a look.

<claws back the feel-goodness>

nickelbabe Mon 07-Oct-13 16:06:39

I emailed Royal Mail:

Dear nickel

Thank you for contacting Royal Mail regarding the problems experienced by Mumsnetters when attempting to collect their Secret Santa items from their local Delivery Offices.

I understand from your email that the problem is caused by the use of Mumsnetters of the house being used on the package which then not be correctly matched up with the name on Identification shown when collecting items.
Whilst I can fully appreciate the inconvenience caused by the recipients not being able to collect their items. It may help if I explain that the staff at your Delivery Office are not being deliberately unhelpful but are under strict rules that the name shown on the identification must match the name on the item. These rules are in place for the safety and security of the mail.

May I suggest that as an alternative to collecting the items, they can arrange a redelivery at www.royalmail.com/redelivery, in this way the name on the item would not pose a problem unless sent using our Special Delivery service and the redelivery is arranged to go to the local Post Office. First or Second class (including Recorded signed for) items can also be redelivered to another address within the local postcode area.

I have however logged your concerns in this matter onto our system which will be considered during future reviews.
Thanks for contacting us and please accept my apologies for any inconvenience this may have caused.

Regards

Jean Crawford
Customer Service Advisor

-- ORIGINAL MESSAGE -
FROM:
Enquiry Detail: Hi, Every year, Mumsnet.com does a Secret Santa present swapping appeal. whereby Mumsnetters can send presents to someone who might need one (to feel a bit loved and special, you see) Most of these are sent through Royal Mail. Because Mumsnet is an anonymous forum, all presents are addressed to "The Mumsnetter of the House" followed by the address. In previous years, it has meant that the Callers' Office has refused to hand over parcels because "you haven't got ID in the name of Mumnsetter" This isn't a small scale things - I think last year, there were a couple of thousand parcels being sent. Is is possible, please, to get an email sent to all Callers' Offices, to be printed out that as long as "the Mumsnetter of the house" has got her ADDRESS on the ID she shows you, that the parcels be handed over? I know from the discussions, that lots of Mumsnetters are recommending using courier firms instead of Royal Mail because of this issue (because of the signature thing) It could potentially cost you a few thousand pounds worht of business every year not to flag this issue up at every branch. Here's the thread so you can see what the problem is, and what the scheme is all about. Thank you very much for listening

FruOla Mon 07-Oct-13 16:18:45

Well done nickelbabe flowers

nickelbabe Mon 07-Oct-13 17:30:24

well, I didn't get the response I hoped for! sad

ScarerAndFuck Mon 07-Oct-13 18:19:40

I didn't get a response at all Nickelbabe but I also asked if just having the address with no name and no mention of "to the mumsnetter" on it would be okay.

That way, anyone with ID for the address should be able to collect it.

So perhaps we could remind donors to just not write that on the external packaging but put it somewhere inside instead.

ScarerAndFuck Mon 07-Oct-13 18:42:07

A reply from Royal Mail just came through.

They do suggest leaving off a recipients name and only writing an address on the parcel and not a name or anything that might look like a name (A Mumsnetter, For The Mumsnetter etc)

They did say that you could put a senders address on the parcel if you wish or, since this is anonymous, just writing Sender: A Mumsnetter on the parcel so the person receiving it will still know it's their MN gift.

timidviper Mon 07-Oct-13 19:04:42

THERhubarb
* ... it would help if the donator knew why that person had been nominated because if that person has been nominated for say, being a good brick, yet that person is not short of cash then they might not require lots more toys for their dcs, yet might be really appreciative of some chocs for themselves, as a way of Mumsnet showing its collective gratitude to a poster who always makes time for others.*

I don't know how people are matched up, but it really would help if the donators had some idea of why that person was nominated so they can buy accordingly. Do you see what I mean?

Great post. This is exactly the point I was trying to make upthread. Is it not possible to have a few broad, non-specific categories such as "Having a tough year"(i.e. needs essentials and treats), "Needs cheering up" (i.e. needs fewer essentials and more treats), "General good egg" (doesn't need essentials, send a reward), etc to give people a clue? Last year I sent vouchers as I had no idea what my mnetter needed but I would have liked to be able to send a more thoughtful gift and felt a bit uncomfortable sending that amount not knowing if that was the best choice. For example, if I sent vouchers for a shop that was not easy to get to, to somebody with no transport.

This is giving me palpitations just thinking about it, no wonder MN Towers need gin! Good luck Mumsnet! grin

Sparklingbrook Mon 07-Oct-13 19:07:36

After this thread MN will be having second thoughts....

FruOla Mon 07-Oct-13 19:22:29

So .... maybe the idea is to send it to the address only, so that (if needs be) it can be collected from the sorting office with someone with the correct address ID.

But double-wrap, so the inside of of the gift says "To The Mumsnetter Of The House".

Last year I was a recipient. I didn't tell DP about it ('cos I thought he'd think it was slightly bonkers blush grin).

Gift didn't arrive - or so I thought. It was only on Christmas Day when DP handed over a parcel to me - he'd thought it was a present from his adult DD to me, which he'd taken delivery of whilst I was out one day. Quite why he thought that she had sent me a present addressed to "The Mumsnetter Of The House", as opposed to 'FruOla', I have no idea grin.

But, of course, it was highly embarrassing that I hadn't thanked my donor beforehand - so could only make my thanks on the thread on Boxing Day.

cakesonatrain Mon 07-Oct-13 20:26:17

Oh, I do like the "general category of nomination" idea.

AndHarry Mon 07-Oct-13 21:30:31

I like the general category idea too.

AnneEyhtMeyer Mon 07-Oct-13 22:41:37

Last year there were a fair number of recipients who said they couldn't thank personally because they hadn't made a note of the code on the parcel.

Maybe MN should emphasise on their email telling recipients they have been nominated how much the donors appreciate knowing that the parcel has arrived, and a link to the "received" thread, along with a reminder to make a note of the MN code on the parcel?

Last year my recipient didn't get around to saying she had received the parcel for a couple of weeks. In that time I was convinced that the parcel had gone astray and my effort had been wasted. (I have namechanged since last year, so my recipient will not know I am talking about her now!)

I wasn't looking for thanks, I just wanted to know that someone who was expecting a parcel had received one and wasn't sitting there thinking that they had been forgotten.

I really don't think it is much to ask for a recipient to post to say they have received a parcel, even if they want to namechange to do it.

Preciousbane Tue 08-Oct-13 10:03:37

I was thrilled to get nominated last year but sadly my parcel didn't arrive. I did contact MNHQ who were helpful.

I assumed everyone did post thanks and am surprised some people didn't.

I think being nominated shouldn't mean that you expect a parcel.

Folks vary. Some are well-meaning but disorganised. Some have unexpected disasters/problems and can't fulfil their promises nor prioritise notification of this. Some are super-efficient.

They are all however, anonymous, and MN can't control the quality/efficiency/seriousness of the posters who offer to donate and their intentions.

Therefore posters should separate nomination from 'receiving' and simply be grateful for whatever turns up, or doesn't.

THERhubarb Tue 08-Oct-13 12:20:23

SparklingBrooks do you not feel it is important to get these issues ironed out?

I specifically remember some Mumsnetters not being able to collect their parcels from the sorting office because of the name issue. It's not something that can be ignored as it caused some distress and a lot of inconvenience at the time. It's worth flagging this up as an issue and getting it sorted - so thanks Nickelbabe. Perhaps MNHQ could ask donators not to address parcels to The Mumsnetter but merely to put an address on there, so that anyone from that address can collect it.

I would really advise that senders also include senders details on the parcel too, just in case it does go missing. And keep the receipt as proof of postage.

I can fully understand how some posters may find it difficult to acknowledge parcels through a variety of issues but also how donators are keen to ensure that their parcel was delivered. I guess that probably can't be resolved easily, just to remind recipients how vital it is to send a quick line even to say that the parcel arrived safely.

I think the response I received from Rebecca was a good one and I feel better knowing that this year, donators are asked what items they are able to give so that they can be matched up appropriately. MNHQ know why people are nominated so I feel we can totally trust their discretion when matching up donators to recipients.

Let's hope we can all spread a little festive cheer this Christmas, not just on Mumsnet but everywhere we can smile

Sparklingbrook Tue 08-Oct-13 12:24:17

Perhaps I was unaware of all the problems Rhubarb. I donated last year then didn't give it another thought. blush

Fillybuster Wed 09-Oct-13 18:03:30

I look forward to this every year....thank you for organising the massed ranks of MNers once again.

Spreadsheets ahoy and tissues to the ready! grin

JaquelineHyde Thu 10-Oct-13 09:10:35

I donated last year, I have no idea if my parcel was received ok as I never saw an acknowledgement on the thank you thread. It doesn't bother me that the MNer didn't post, I just hope my box was received and that it helped someone out.

I will donate this year.

JaquelineHyde Thu 10-Oct-13 09:14:37

MN I keep trying to nominate people and every time I do it I keep getting told that the nickname doesn't exist.

I have done a search and the names I am nominating do exist but it keeps telling me they don't.

Please could we have a look into this as I really don't want people to miss out because of a problem with the page.

Thanks flowers

KateSMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 10-Oct-13 10:47:39

Hi JaquelineHyde

So sorry you're struggling! Can we ask whether you're nominating people under a previous nickname, or their current nickname? Either way should work, as this is a glitch we ironed out early on.

We've just had a quick go, and it seems to be working by using current nn or past ones. But if this has gone wonky for other people, we certainly need to look at our system again!

Could you have another go, and get back to us with the results? If anyone else is having trouble, please do shout, as we wouldn't want anyone to miss out.

JaquelineHyde Thu 10-Oct-13 19:32:25

I have just done a quick check and it was previous nicknames.

I have now managed to nominate both under their current nicknames, so possibly still a problem?

Thanks anyway.

SoftKittyWarmKitty Fri 11-Oct-13 23:14:51

I took part in this for the first time last year but I only donated, as I couldn't think who to nominate. The year I've been making a mental note of posters who I might want to nominate, and I have at least one in mind. I'll also donate again. I love the thank you thread, it makes me feel all wam and fuzzy inside reading how surprised and happy the recipients are smile.

everydayaschoolday Sun 13-Oct-13 20:51:53

Oh, I love this! Did it last year and was fab. Have nominated and donated.

HappyMummyOfOne Mon 14-Oct-13 11:29:25

Rhubarb, I think its great to iron out issues. I only donated once and had to get MN to check if the parcel had arrived (couldnt send signed for a had the address very late and post office said it would arrive after xmas if trackable for some reason).

It did put me off donating again and would be better if nominees had to acknowledge the parcel. Its not about saying thank you but more to let people know the time and effort they put it was worth it as the parcel arrived safe and sound.

Sending to the MN also caused a lot of problems so nice to see that being looked at too.

aloha123 Mon 14-Oct-13 15:53:18

I think this is tricky, of course there will be people who take advantage they come on here all the time and most people who have been on here for any length of time will see evidence of them somewhere if they look. (hence the advice mumsnet puts up now about only giving what you can afford etc etc)

However most of the people are surely just normal people trying to do something for others who have had a bad time.

I have changed to this name because when I read the description above I suddenly wondered whether maybe I forgot to thank my secret santa once (I have tried to find out but my internet is being really slow so I cant search properly) if it was me I am truly truly sorry, it was completely out of character for me.

At the time my life had been totally wrecked, I had just had a baby (not my first!) who was repeatedly hospitalised from birth over an hour away from home, ending up with an almost 5 month hospitalisation (admittedly some was after Christmas) of course you need to be in hospital a lot when breastfeeding and they (understandably) didn't provide internet access for parents, I myself had an accident and smashed up my face, (it is still scarred and I was unable to even eat Christmas dinner,) I spent every free second I had charging backwards and forwards between home and hospital trying to see my other children, (husband working couldn't/wouldn't take time off) subsequently I lost my job and we were forced to move away from our home, friends, kids schools etc.

Admittedly this is probably a bit more than happened to most people who don't say thank you and perhaps unbelievably it doesn't stop there either.

However reading this made me feel really bad in case it was me who didn't say thank you but I don't want people to feel bad when they give a gift and it is not acknowledged, just sometimes there is a reason behind it.

oh and if it was me please can I say a huge big thank you to whoever it was your kindness was truly appreciated.

IamtheZombie Tue 15-Oct-13 12:33:25

MNHQ, thanks for changing the thread title! It reminded Zombie that she needed to get her skates on and make her nominations - which she has just done.

She's very excited about being part of this wonderful enterprise.

MissStrawberry Tue 15-Oct-13 13:55:58

Thank you for changing this thread title to remind me to nominate.

I really hope she "wins."

WorraLiberty Tue 15-Oct-13 16:10:55

I'm so glad I spotted this in time to nominate and donate!

Very nearly forgot blush

Ruby6918 Tue 15-Oct-13 17:22:25

i like this but i dont know how people decide if its the real people who need these gifts and deserve them, as its faceless, people can tell lies on the internet, im sorry but im donating to womens aid,

Sparklingbrook Tue 15-Oct-13 17:25:15

Ruby people get nominated for all sorts of reasons not just because they are having a hard time financially.

Some are deserving because of the good advice or help they have given others on this site in topics like Health or Childbirth for instance.

Badvoc Tue 15-Oct-13 17:29:38

Oh good grief I nearly forgot!
Thanks for reminder!

colleysmill Tue 15-Oct-13 17:55:25

Me too badvoc!

RatherBeOnThePiste Tue 15-Oct-13 22:23:38

Pistey has a happy image of Zombie on skates grin

I'm not too late am I?

I'm off to the nomination department smile

ChippingInNeedsSleepAndCoffee Tue 15-Oct-13 22:26:36

I have nominated someone who definitely and absolutely should be considered for a 'Good Egg' Secret Santa present.

There are so many people I would like to nominate though - how do you choose between all the other really Good Egg/Deserves A Treat/Should have something to unwrap posters??

IamtheZombie Tue 15-Oct-13 22:36:21

Hold that image in your head, Pistey. You'll never see it in RL. Zombie had a poor sense of balance AND very weak ankles. Not a good combo for skates... grin

MissStrawberry Wed 16-Oct-13 08:44:42

<worries about Zombie's ankles>

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 16-Oct-13 09:37:16

Hi Everyone,
Thank you so much for all the heartfelt nominations. They are all very moving and yet again we are humbled here at MNHQ by how many amazing folk we have on the boards.

The nomination page is now closed. All nominees will be contacted by MNHQ shortly via PM.

You are still very welcome make a donation by going here

thanks <whistles> Deck the halls with boughs of holly - Fa la la la la, la la la la.

nickelbabe Wed 16-Oct-13 16:03:22

can't - it says access denied. confused

cakesonatrain Wed 16-Oct-13 16:13:28

I got the same, nickelbabe. If you up to the top and click on the link in the op, that works.

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 16-Oct-13 17:15:26

nickelbabe

can't - it says access denied. confused

Ooops, sorry about that. All fixed now. Thanks for flagging.

FruOla Wed 16-Oct-13 19:44:33

"Thank you for changing this thread title to remind me to nominate. I really hope she "wins."

Although it's closed now, MissStrawberry, just to set your mind at rest there is no 'one single winner'. Everyone who is nominated should receive something from a MNer who has offered to donate.

It's a kind of giant Secret Santa - and hugely heart warming - 'tis luffly smile.

MissStrawberry Wed 16-Oct-13 20:24:33

Oh, I know there is no single winner but I wasn't sure that everyone who is nominated would get something.

Thank you flowers.

EustaciaVye Wed 16-Oct-13 20:47:36

I haven't really been on MN properly for a long time. I donated in the first Xmas appeal. I gave some second hand toys and clothes to a MNer in need. I couldn't afford anything else but wanted to do my bit. nice to see it is still going smile

Xmas2013MN8157 Thu 17-Oct-13 13:21:32

Dear lovely MNer smile

This nickname is my SSNN <twirls> smile

Those nominated all get one, how fab is that? I'd normally say thank you in my real MNNN but I guess they would prefer me to wear this one for now, so, here it is, just for this thread.

I've been nominated for a Secret Santa present and it's absolutely blown me away.

thanks Thank you so very much, from the bottom of my heart. I have also offered donations and I'm a huge believer in Paying It Forward.

So if you nominated me, you have made me smile! Lots! We've not had the best of times of late, I'm disabled and my pain levels have been through the roof, so is our son and he has been in pain of late too with his spine.

We've all had germs too - yuk!!

So the shiny PM, twinkling away on my screen just now was a truly, honestly wonderful, and lovely surprise smile

You've made this little poorly person smile from here ********************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************************** to here grin

I hope you know just how fab you are thanks xxx

Snapespeare Thu 17-Oct-13 18:12:41

Oh now I'm going to start crying and it's only October.

mn8157 I hope you and your family have a lovely festive season.

I was nominated as well and it's just the thought of being appreciated, or that someone cares if you've got a bit of a shitty time on your hands that makes me grin...not the thought of a huge haul of goodies, but that we are a community and that when you occasionally feel like things are difficult, someone you haven't met cares enough to nominate you. smile.

So, thank you nominator...and nearer Xmas once I have wrestled with the royal mall to receive any such thing that might arrive, I shall change my name to a number and thank my Santa.

Xmas2013MN7873 Fri 18-Oct-13 17:06:42

Hello.
I had no idea this scheme was happening until I had a message from HQ saying I'd been nominated. I'm amazed that somebody thought I should be one of the people singled out (Yes, I know!) for a visit from Mumsnet's stNick.

I feel a bit emotional and want to hug my laptop.

thanksthanksthanksthanksthanksthanksthanksthanksthanksthanksthanksthanksthanksthanksthanks

If you nominate, you don't get to know your nominee's code, that's for the donors.

Galena Sat 19-Oct-13 16:45:00

Mumsnet... Can I just say that I've missed the nominations etc because I haven't seen the threads. Even on your 'all about the MN secret santa' page it says that nominations are opened 'around the end of October'. The 1st of October isn't the end. Also, and this is something I probably should have mentioned before, but sticky threads do not show on the app. I generally use the app to view mumsnet, but if I go onto _chat on my app I don't get stickied threads. This means that if there was a sticky to the nomination thread (and I don't know if there was) then I didn't see it. sad And I wanted to nominate. sad Bah.

triplets Sat 19-Oct-13 23:57:21

So surprised to receive a message to say I have been nominated, gosh.........it makes you feel special. So who ever you are thank you soo much, its so nice to know that someone is thinking of you. Gosh!

nickelbabe Sun 20-Oct-13 00:02:50

galena i thi k you can change it. because I get stickies on active convos

my app is the android app
confused

Galena Sun 20-Oct-13 00:09:21

I don't use Active Convos, I use Topics to navigate to my chosen topics and there are no stickies - but when I look at the same topics on my laptop there are stickies.

HalloSoloHowYouWeen Sun 20-Oct-13 01:12:02

<does not feel special this year sad>

coff33pot Sun 20-Oct-13 02:35:50

Aw nooooooo misses the nomination deadline sad just donated though and can't wait to read all the happy receivers posts closer to Xmas smile

cakesonatrain Sun 20-Oct-13 08:30:51

I have nominated and donated, and think it's all fab.
I have a couple of questions which are pretty much just curiosity!

What happens when there's a mismatch between donors and nominees?
If more donors, do some people get additional present?
If more nominees, what happens?
We are asked when donating what sort of present we'd like to give. If that doesn't match up with what's required, do you ask donors to consider giving something else? (I guess that's why vouchers are good - oops, mine are all Things)

I noticed no option to give a present for a man, be that DH/DP of needy family or male mnetter - do men get presents?

What is the balance of nominees? Are they mostly 'in need' or 'thanks for being lovely/helpful' etc?

I realise these are all quite nosey, especially the last one, so no worries if you don't answer!

difficultpickle Sun 20-Oct-13 10:35:03

I wonder how many nominataions there are compared to donations? I've been nominated which is lovely and a huge surprise. However I think there must be loads of MNetters who are more in need of some Christmas cheer so I won't be completing the email that MNHQ sent. I hope that doesn't sound rude but I just feel that I'm not able to accept a gift.

catgirl1976 Sun 20-Oct-13 13:12:03

I've nominated and offered to donate, but I haven't heard anything yet about donating.

Also - is it really to late to nominate someone else. I just remembered another person who has been so kind sad

Galena Sun 20-Oct-13 14:05:20

bisjo, please accept. last year there were more donations than nominations. Many people got 2 gifts. Someone wanted you to receive something. Accept in the spirit the nomination was made.

FruOla Sun 20-Oct-13 16:49:26

cakesonatrain, I nominated two MNers this year; one of whom is a man. Presumably when he replies to his 'nominees email', he will indicate that he's a man, which will give his 'matched donor' some idea what to send him - even if it's a voucher.

catgirl. Those of us who have offered to donate will not hear for another week or so. MNHQ have a rather complicated task of matching nominees (who have to respond to their email in the first place), with us, the donors. I imagine it's a logistical nightmare for them grin

Never fear, it will all become clear within the next few weeks.

FruOla Sun 20-Oct-13 16:52:09

"which will give his 'matched donor' some idea what to send him - even if it's a voucher". Sorry, that sounded rather patronising blush. What I meant was, if you are unsure what to send someone - male or female - a voucher is still a fab gift!

cakesonatrain Sun 20-Oct-13 17:42:38

Thanks Fru. I guess I was just making the point that there was no option for "generic man gift' on the donation page, whereas you could choose "donate to toddler boy/teenage girl" etc.
Probably not that many men though.

FruOla Sun 20-Oct-13 17:58:44

I suppose you could ask, in the text box, if any males would like a gift?

cakesonatrain Sun 20-Oct-13 19:03:33

"...I imagine it's a logistical nightmare for them"

I was thinking that it would be an interesting puzzle!

Xmas2013MN4906 Sun 20-Oct-13 23:48:27

Liking the new name!
Thank you from the heart of my ample bottom to whoever nominated me.
I had my first mince pie o the season in your honour today.

2tiredtoScare Wed 23-Oct-13 18:27:07

What a lovely idea, I didn't see this until it was too late to nominate but have still be able to donate so that's great smile

SallyBear Tue 29-Oct-13 15:17:05

I have nominated and have also said that I'd donate. Will someone contact me about the donation nearer the time??

exexpat Tue 29-Oct-13 22:15:19

Just bumping this because it's the last day for donations - an hour or so to go. Anyone been meaning to donate but not got round to it yet?

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 30-Oct-13 14:28:20

Ho ho ho,
<tugs down hand knitted reindeer jumper over giant bosom>

So the donations page is now closed and the spreadsheets are out. <whistles, 'It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas'>

It's another heartwarming year. You lot have been incredibly generous once again. thanks

Things will go a bit quiet for a wee while as we match up the hundreds of donations with the hundreds of nominees. We're on the coffee and biscuits from now on, cause we have to concentrate on this bit.

Donators will get a mail giving them all the information on where to send their gift by the end of November.
<yanks cotton wool beard aside and scratches chin>

FCEK Thu 31-Oct-13 20:09:51

I've nominated but I've checked and no email was recieved requesting contact details.

littlepinkpear Fri 01-Nov-13 11:51:10

Sandy

Will we be sent the information to match our donations but also who else might be in the household for a smallish pressie if we want to send more than one?

FruOla Fri 01-Nov-13 15:32:41

I think SandyMumsnet tries to match our donations (we had the option to click on various options, as a donor IIRC) to what nominees tell MNHQ about their family and circumstances.

littlepinkpear Sat 02-Nov-13 05:23:01

Thanks Fruola, might just add some extras too grin

PurpleCrazyHorse Sun 03-Nov-13 08:05:24

I donated last year and got some info about my recipient (presumably from some questions MN asked them when they accepted the nomination). I therefore knew the age & gender of their child and some family info so could choose my gift better. It really doesn't have to be expensive. I made some things and also sent a voucher for a gift (due to huge Royal Mail postage costs!).

It all becomes clear when donators get the info from MN later in November. Just don't forget to keep logging on if you're not a regular!!

cakesonatrain Sun 03-Nov-13 08:43:06

I'm really looking forward to buying my donations and wrapping them up all festive and sparkly smile

SmileItsSunny Wed 06-Nov-13 13:06:45

Help I'm too late! I really would like to donate something - it was so rewarding last year to see how much it was appreciated.
MN Towers is there anything I can do?

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 06-Nov-13 14:09:24

Hi there everyone,

We are now busy matching up our spreadsheets, it's going great. A big thank you to everyone!

The nomination and donation pages are now closed.

If you have any queries or last minute concerns please get in touch with us on santa.claus@mumsnet.com, we'll be very happy to help.

cozietoesie Thu 07-Nov-13 22:56:13

Sandy

Thanks for that but I might have to go away for a few days. Is there any indication of roughly when the details will be sent to donors. (eg 'late November' or 'early December'.) ?

IamtheZombie Sat 09-Nov-13 14:01:24

cozie, Sandy says in the opening post that all of the matching up should be done by 22 November and the mails to the donators should go out then.

cozietoesie Sat 09-Nov-13 17:47:47

Duh! Thanks Zombie.

smile

aufaniae Tue 19-Nov-13 22:54:03
aufaniae Tue 19-Nov-13 22:55:12

Oops! <whistles innocently>

IamtheZombie Wed 20-Nov-13 21:10:17

Zombie is getting really excited. She can hardly wait until Friday to learn to whom she will be sending presents. grin

InkleWinkle Wed 20-Nov-13 21:20:04

There's another thread where some one has already rec'd a present.
Not sure how though.

FruOla Thu 21-Nov-13 09:18:06

Inkle, I wonder if she was sent a gift last year and the same MNer has kindly sent her one again this year without being part of this year's SS? Or maybe it was one of those "I've got/do you want?" threads, which are separate from the SS.

Xmas2013MN3277 Sat 23-Nov-13 10:38:51

Having donated in the past I've then not been on MN for a while. We've had the crappiest year I could ever have imagined and getting the email to say I'd been nominated felt like getting a (much needed) great big hug from all of mumsnet smile
Will do my best to post thank yous later on but we are awaiting yet more operation dates for ds2 which sod's law decrees will probably be at the same time as I'd want to be thanking you grin so I'm here now just in case. thanks

TheQuietCricket Sat 23-Nov-13 13:57:48

Should we have heard by now ?

I haven't had an e-mail yet although maybe they are being sent out in batches.

cozietoesie Sat 23-Nov-13 14:04:00

See this thread Cricket. Sandy's computer blew up with the strain (or something) so there will be a slight delay.

FruOla Sat 23-Nov-13 17:15:38

We'll hear sometime next week, Cricket. As cozie said, poor Sandy's computer gave up the will to live the other day! Hopefully, we'll hear during week commencing Mon 25th November.

MOSagain Sun 24-Nov-13 09:19:24

I've not received my information either :-( it worries me when left so late

cozietoesie Sun 24-Nov-13 12:26:10

It's only a few days late, MOS. Keep calm. Royal Mail won't be going doolally for a week or so yet.

smile

MOSagain Sun 24-Nov-13 17:54:13

No need to be patronising. You may not realise it but a number of mumsnetters live overseas. I've donated the last 4 years and sometimes it has been a problem as parcels posted to the UK could take up to 6 weeks. Bearing in mind it is a month until Christmas eve, I imagine some overseas donors will have difficulties

MOS I'm overseas so I'm using Amazon vouchers as my present. A little impersonal but they will get there.

MOSagain Mon 25-Nov-13 21:45:23

I know some do that MrsT but I just love going out and choosing. It is a good suggestion though, thanks

Me too but Canada Post and I differ on our idea of what a reasonable amount of money for delivery in a reasonable amount of time is... Wankers.

TheEyeofHarmony Tue 26-Nov-13 12:46:38

MrsTerryPratchett - Do you buy the amazon vouchers and send or do you send via email, so amazon send the voucher to the reciepts email address?

I buy them and Amazon sends them. This is Amazon.ca though so might be different.

TheEyeofHarmony Tue 26-Nov-13 14:18:40

Thank you

First time donating to this and really don't want to screw it up!

cozietoesie Tue 26-Nov-13 15:21:00

Well done Sandy and Sandy's new computer. (Information now received here.)

smile

Here too. Poor Sandy here's some cake

All received and ready to get started grin

cozietoesie Tue 26-Nov-13 16:18:02

I should have been ready to get started but my printer has just decided to run out of ink. (Clearly come out in sympathy with Sandy's one.) Looks like it will have to be tomorrow now. blush

Dawndonnaagain Tue 26-Nov-13 16:25:07

Well done, Sandy! Have some cake and wine!
I'm off on a shopping trip, hurrah!

FruOla Tue 26-Nov-13 16:51:57

Thank you so much Sandy! I think you deserve a wine or a [gin]

grin

InkleWinkle Tue 26-Nov-13 16:54:45

Here too!!

With an address label no less!
Surpassed yourselves this time!

Sandy, you can do this job again next year :-))

Xmas2013SantaA4142 Wed 27-Nov-13 12:16:20

checking name change...

Xmas2013SantaA4142 Wed 27-Nov-13 12:17:10

Never done this before. I have sent my gift already - do I need to do anything else?

FruOla Wed 27-Nov-13 15:29:56

Very impressed by the pre-printed address label!

But could I confirm something previously mentioned up-thread (I think?). That if you send something to "the MNer of the House", especially via a 'signed for' service, the MNer might not be able to pick it up from the sorting office (or wherever) without ID - even if the ID gives the home address (assuming the MNer isn't home when it's delivered).

I thought that Royal Mail, specifically, have said that it's better to address it to The Occupier, as ID for the address would then be acceptable, even without a specific name?

That is my plan, anyway. To send via a 'signed for service' to 'The Occupier' and then stick the MNHQ generated label inside.

SantaB9702 Wed 27-Nov-13 15:29:59

I am such a dopey mare! First time donating and I sent a parcel off yesterday for a mumsnetter, but wanted to mail the vouchers for DC's separately for safety. An elderly gent was asking to use my pen at the GPO and I forgot to put the amounts on the back blush Have emailed santaHQ so hopefully it will be sorted.

SantaB9702 Wed 27-Nov-13 15:31:30

Oh no Fruola is next day delivery a signed for service??

FruOla Wed 27-Nov-13 15:35:55

I think so, yes!

Xmas2013SantaA4142 Wed 27-Nov-13 16:13:16

Will the recipients write on this thread when they get it or is there another tread for them?

FruOla Wed 27-Nov-13 17:34:50

I don't know, Xmas2013SantaA4142. If the recipients know the thread is here, then maybe they will post on here .... if not, who knows ... ?

AmeliaToppingLovesShopping Thu 28-Nov-13 07:37:01

FruOla the recipient will have to rearrange delivery rather than collect it in person.

I think there is normally a separate thank you thread.

HorsePetal Thu 28-Nov-13 07:50:50

Hi - am I too late to add my name to list to donate?

Haven't done this before - do you send goodwill messages with the gifts or not?

HorsePetal you can always do Refuge's Christmas list at John Lewis - list 564013.

FruOla Thu 28-Nov-13 15:11:56

Amelia, there was a huge debate about whether you put "To The Mumsnetter Of The House" or just "The Occupier" on your parcel/envelope; the debate is on this thread between the 4th Oct - 7th Oct, including two MNers who actually contacted Royal Mail about this - see up-thread.

I'm still of a mind to address mine to The Occupier and then double wrap, so the inner wrapping has the "To The MNer etc"!

IamtheZombie Thu 28-Nov-13 15:21:04

For those who were asking, HERE is the official Thank You thread.

FruOla Thu 28-Nov-13 16:42:42

BlueChampagne. "Haven't done this before - do you send goodwill messages with the gifts or not?"

It's completely up to you what kind of goodwill message you enclose - or not.

I mean, if you're reluctant to send anything too personal (from you) you could just put a short note/card in with your gift saying 'Happy Christmas' - or whatever.

AmeliaToppingLovesShopping Thu 28-Nov-13 18:40:12

FruOla my last comment was really rubbish!

I remember that thread. The message from Royal Mail said that if the package said to the mumsnetter of the house but you are not home to receive it then you would need to rearrange the delivery. If you are at home you don't need to show proof of name.

I have picked up stuff before that was in my maiden name and i only had proof of address in my married name so i guess it just depends who serves you.

Xmas2013SantaA2161 Thu 28-Nov-13 19:48:24

Xmas2013MN2161 Just a little message to say that your parcel will be in the post towards the end of next week :D

YankNCock Thu 28-Nov-13 21:40:04

I swore last year, that if our financial position was improved, I'd be a donor this year--and now I appear to have missed the cut-off! That will teach me to slack off on MNing.

We're not tons better off this year, but I could have managed something. To everyone who IS donating, can I just thank you in advance and say what a HUGE difference it made to our Christmas last year. The gifts for the boys were perfect, and meant DH and I didn't feel like the world's most crap parents for having hardly anything for them.

Will someone please poke me next year? I will have a look at that Refuge list at John Lewis this year.

Xmas2013SantaA5024 Fri 29-Nov-13 07:40:14

Gift posted ��

Xmas2013MN2739 Sun 01-Dec-13 23:04:24

Test

MOSagain Mon 02-Dec-13 07:42:47

Oh dear. Having waited ages for my match, having got the details I'm completely clueless as to what to get. I normally choose gifts but think this year it might have to be vouchers

MrsFlintLockwood Tue 03-Dec-13 23:49:06

bluechampagne yes you can send a message if you want, it can still be anonymous. In fact I found my card the other day that was in the package I received last year - it gave me the warm 'n' fuzzies all over again smile

Xmas2013SantaA4511 Wed 04-Dec-13 10:57:12

Dear Xmas2013MN4511

I am posting your gifts today with guaranteed delivery tomorrow, Thursday 5th December.

Xmas2013MN4511 Wed 04-Dec-13 12:13:34

Xmas2013SantaA4511 oooh thank you thanks I shall pre-warn DH that those are meant for me wink and maybe tell MIL too, or she might send them back!

XmasSantaA4220 Wed 04-Dec-13 13:07:30

Hi recipient

Just posting to say don't think you've been forgotten, your gift will be with you, just awaiting a parcel to send on.

Merry Christmas!

Xmas2013MN3482 Wed 04-Dec-13 16:03:33

Checking nc, haven't changed in years!

Xmas2013MN3482 Wed 04-Dec-13 16:09:18

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Xmas2013SantaA7270 Wed 04-Dec-13 16:53:56

Hello Recipient MN7270,

just to let you know that your parcel will be in the post on Friday, sorry for the delay!

FruOla Wed 04-Dec-13 18:25:47

Now we're at the stage of posting (and receiving) maybe it's best to post on this thread? www.mumsnet.com/Talk/Christmas/1882542-Christmas-Appeal-Thank-You-thread-2013?pg=1

Xmas2013SantaA7270 Thu 05-Dec-13 10:23:15

Thanks FruOla smile

Xmas2013SantaA8275 Thu 05-Dec-13 12:54:45

To recipient Xmas2013MN8275 - your gift is on its way by first class mail today. Hope it makes your Christmas extra special.

SandyMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 05-Dec-13 13:02:41

Xmas2013SantaA7270

Thanks FruOla smile

Yes, thanks FruOla<hic>

cozietoesie Thu 05-Dec-13 15:35:00

I see the level on the brandy bottle is way way down!

grin

Hello, Is there a thank you thread up and running yet??

cozietoesie Sat 07-Dec-13 15:33:38

There surely is, Clementine. Here it is - down the page a bit.

fsmile

Xmas2013SantaA6474 Sat 07-Dec-13 17:40:31

Xmas2013MN6474 I hope to get your gift in the post on Monday. Hope this works time-wise for you as going to a c/o address (or is everyone a c/o address?).

Xmas2013MN8616 Sun 08-Dec-13 14:15:13

To the lovely MNer who sent me the chocs and the voucher, thank you very much xxxxx I'm really touched. It did make me laugh when I found the parcel in the garden addressed to the The Mumsnetter Of the House! I wonder what the postie thought. I know I was naughty and opened it before Christmas, but I needed some seasonal cheer, and got some. So thank you very much, you lovely lady smile

Xmas2013MN8616 Sun 08-Dec-13 14:15:54

Bugger. Wrong thread. Hold on....

Xmas2013MN6233 Wed 11-Dec-13 13:13:55

I'm so sorry it has taken me so long to post, I am up to my eyes in small and not so small children, moving and Christmas.

I have received a lovely wrapped package with lots of things in it, but I haven't opened them as I don't get Christmas presents for adults so they are the only surprises there will be in this house.

Id like to thank whoever nominated me and who sent me gifts.

2012 was the year from hell, literally - ending on a high with the birth of my youngest, 2013 started off as a year from hell, better than the year before but still a nightmare most people don't want to visit.

I was really touched to be nominated last year, it really lifted a dark, dark place, I was touched to be nominated again - I name change so often I was surprised anyone remembered me - next year I will contribute as well - I simply have't had a chance this year.

I am happy to say 2013 is ending on a huge high, I have made some difficult decisions, cut some people from our lives and moved to the house of my dreams.

The kindness of strangers and the people here, got me through the darkest place I have ever been, without it - and you - I am not sure I would be here posting this.

The MN secret santa is the epitomy of this and I am really thankful to have been thought of again.

Merry Christmas Everyone.

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx and unmumsnetty (hug hug hug hug hug hug hug hug hug hug hug hug)

Xmas2013MN4975 Wed 11-Dec-13 17:30:22

Just to say thankyou to whoever sent my book that arrived today.
Have not opened it, but will curl up and read it over the holiday season.
thankyou

My kids thought the label was really cool as they always accuse everybody on Mumsnet of being imaginary.
thanksthanksthanksthanksthanks

cfc Thu 12-Dec-13 07:14:40

I am Xmas2013SantaA2213 and I wanted to tell XmasSantaMN2213 that your parcel will be on its way today by special delivery xxx

Xmas2013SantaB2657 Fri 13-Dec-13 08:49:16

Hello Xmas2013MN2657 I posted your parcel on Wednesday 1st class so hopefully you should get it today/tomorrow (I would have hoped!!!!). fsmile

Xmas2013MN6584 Fri 13-Dec-13 18:38:01

Xmas2013SantaA6584 The package arrived today.

Thank you so much! What a treat and I'm so grateful. I can't believe how thoughtful and generous you've been and I'm very touched.

Thank you! flowers

Xmas2013MN4975 Fri 13-Dec-13 18:44:08

OK,
The pressie to me for being nominated was lovely and I'm all fluffy about it.
The BEAUTIFUL cards and postits from Scriptum that arrived today for my kids are a REAL treat.
Thankyou.
They will no longer steal my office ones and their snotty messages will be beautifully presented.
thankswinethankswinethankswinethankswinethankswine

Xmas2013MN6584 Fri 13-Dec-13 18:44:21

Oops!

Thought this was the thank you thread blush

Xmas2013MN9869 Sat 14-Dec-13 17:43:26

Thank you so much for the generous present. Now to figure out how to spend it!

SantaA5020 Sat 14-Dec-13 23:35:46

Dear MN5020

Just to let you know your parcel will be sent on Friday and will arrive in time for Christmas x

Just can't get to the post office before then and didn't want you to think you had been forgotten. There is a little something for you and presents for all your DCs

Merry Christmas grin

Xmas2013MN2657 Sun 15-Dec-13 10:09:58

Hello Xmas2013SantaB2657 - thank you so much for your gifts! I have thanked you on the official thank you thread but will copy it over here (I didn't know this thread was still going)

Xmas2013SantaB2657

Thank you so very much for your gift which arrived on Thursday. The two books are perfect for my DCs and it's lovely to have an Amazon voucher all to myself!

Thank you very much, and Happy Christmas to you x

Xmas2013SantaA4274 Wed 18-Dec-13 14:53:43

Dear MN4274 - I haven't forgotten you! Your parcel is packed and ready to be sent out tonight or tomorrow morning fgrin

Should be with you by the weekend (I hope)... Happy Christmas xxx

Xmas2013MN4274 Wed 18-Dec-13 23:05:37

Oooooooooh!

Xmas2013SantaA9869 Thu 19-Dec-13 08:21:53

Glad it arrived! Wasn't sure how they matched us up, worried item would be as much use as a chocolate teapot. Best wishes.

Xmas2013MN4763 Mon 23-Dec-13 12:43:39

Ohhh, I got 2 amazing packages through the post today, thank you Kate (I think AKA Santa some letters I forget 4763, but you signed your card Kate smile ). We opened them straight away and I am so happy with the lovely things you sent. The chocolates will not take long to be eaten by me I can assure you blush and it's fab they are mint ones as I love mint chocs and DH doesn't like them, which means he won't be sneaking them when I'm not looking grin . The 4th king book is wonderful. I've never seen it before but it's so lovely to have something your DC have enjoyed so much, really thoughtful of you and something we will have the pleasure of reading for years to come. DD has loved going through the box of treats, it's kept her quiet for ages thismorning whilst we've been decorating smile Absolutely everything is fab, and I think I was more excited than DD was when we discovered the rubber duck glows blush . We are doing the penguin flannel in the bath tonight and DD is already super excited (and btw the only thing she's asked for from Father Christmas is bath toys so she's very chuffed with the duck and flannel, thinks it's magic she got them early!). She's been walking round the house all morning wearing the ear muffs too wink . thanks so much.

xmas2013MN4763 Mon 30-Dec-13 18:23:54

Me again, I actually can't believe this, is this right? I got a very lovely mn parcel through today from hermes (looks like they've had it since 21st December). DH was very hmm at the contents as he doesn't get the mn theme, but I luffs the pom bears and mug and chocs and DD is having the books for her bed time stories tonight. Definitely fab choices and thanks so much, it's so thoughtful and kind.

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