Thursday, December 30, 2010

Winding down from the holidays....

Christmas was exciting and delivering the dolls to Children's Hospital on Christmas day was awesome.

I'm currently playing with the iPod touch I got from Santa.  Daddy loaded all of my favorite shows on it.  I am excited about going back to school next week and to start working on my next project.   I visited Project C.U.R.E. last week and they do a cool thing called "Kits for Kids".  They give you boxes with a list of things on the outside of the box.  You fill the box with the items and return it.  The boxes are sent along with medical supplies to countries in need of aid. 

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

My family drove down to The Children's Hospital this morning and dropped off the American Girl dolls.  The people in the volunteer office said they would deliver the dolls to girls in the hospital today!  I hope they enjoy them! 
Thank you to everyone who participated.  If you would still like to participate,  100% of the donated  money will be used to purchase dolls and toys for the hospital throughout the year. 

Friday, December 24, 2010

This is what 32 American Girl dolls look like.....

Good thing we already dropped off 10 dolls on Monday....this will fill at least two cars. 


Actually, Goal Surpassed!  We'll be delivering an additional 32 dolls plus a bunch of "boy toys" to the Children's Hospital in Denver tomorrow morning.  With the 10 dolls that we've already delivered, this brings us to 42 dolls (not including all the "boy toys").

Thanks to everyone for their generosity.

Happy Holidays!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Only ONE doll to go!

I am close to delivering THIRTY more dolls to to The Children's Hospital of Denver.  Only one more doll to go and I will hit my goal of FORTY dolls.  Thank you to everyone who has participated.  I can't wait to give 30 more girls at the hospital an American Girl doll for Christmas. 

I have received donations for FIVE more dolls!

I am now at 38 dolls!  Only 2 more to go until I reach my goal!  Thank you to everyone who has participated!  I will be posting pictures tomorrow after I  visit the American Girl store to buy the rest of the dolls. 

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

23 dolls to deliver on Christmas Day -- only 7 more until we reach 40!

Thanks to everyone that's given last night and throughout the day today -- there are now 23 dolls ready to be delivered to Children's Hospital on Christmas Day!

PS -- check out my doll from Jennifer at the American Girl store in Lone Tree appearing in the picture with me.

I'm so excited! My own American Girl Doll!

Jennifer at the American Girl store in Lone Tree let me pick out my very own doll because of all the things I'm doing for the Children's Hospital.  Thanks, Jennifer!  And thanks everyone else at the American Girl store in Lone Tree!

Picked up another 12 dolls tonight

Check it out:

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

New goal: 40 dolls by Christmas Day!

We know we can do it -- help us spread the word!

We'll be posting pictures and videos, and we're happy to give link love to big donors and referrers!

25 dolls achieved!

Special thanks to David Avrin for posting about the Tenley Project™ on his Facebook account and the generosity of one of his friends from Lakewood, OH who decided to make 5 kids at the Children's Hospital in Denver happy this Christmas.

We'll be visiting the American Girl store tomorrow to get another 5 dolls and we hope to be able to bring even more on Christmas Day!

You've helped the Tenley Project™ provide 10 more dolls!

We bought 10 more dolls tonight and are at 20 dolls and counting!!!

Thanks you to everyone who has been so generous in supporting the Tenley Project™.  We plan on delivering the next round of dolls and toys to Children's Hospital in Denver on Christmas Day.

In 7 hours we went from 16 to 19 dolls!!

This will be an exciting trip to the American Girl store!  We are closing in on our goal quickly!  If we happen to surpass our goal, we will buy more toys for the boys with any additional funds. Once again, 100% of the money will be going to buy American Girl dolls and toys for kids at Children's Hospital.  Thanks for your support!

And,  for those of you who have offered to buy ME a doll,  I appreciate your thoughtfulness but I am still saving up my allowance for my own doll.  So far I have $10.  I've asked Santa for a doll but my mom said she isn't sure if Santa brings American Girl dolls.  I'm hoping he will make an exception. 

16 dolls and counting!!!

I guess I need to change my goal...time to shoot for 25 dolls!  I had no idea that so many people would be touched by my story and want to participate.  Susan at is even challenging her friends to donate.  I can't wait to take pictures at the American Girl store tonight and post them. 

Please scroll down my blog and check out my videos from Fox 31 news and Channel 2's Everyday show.
Be prepared...I talk a lot!  I'm not sure why they even bothered to let my mom sit on the couch with me. ;)

Heading back to the American Girl store today for Doll 13!!

Thanks to more donations, I will be heading back to the American Girl store today to buy another doll PLUS 2 doll outfits.  I will post pictures later!  My goal is to donate 15 dolls to Children's Hospital before Christmas.  Thank you for your support!

You can check out a list of donors on my The Tenley Project™ Thanks You page.

Monday, December 20, 2010

The Tenley Project™ story's been reported to CNN's iReport

Help recommend it to get it to the national level and provide more gifts for children in the hospital!

Click here to recommend it.

Libby Weaver features the story again on Fox 31 News at 9

Video embedded below:


If the embedded video doesn't work, click here.

Tenley on Fox 31 at 5PM

A little more of the story (embedded below):


If the embedded video does not work, click here.

Tune in tonight to hear more of the story!

Fox 31 news interviewed me at The Children's Hospital today and I  got to meet a wonderful little girl named Gracie.  I gave Gracie an American Girl doll and we had a great time playing with it. 

They also interviewed Gracie's mom and my mom (I hope they said good things about me).  You can watch it tonight on Fox 31 news (in Denver) at 5pm, 9pm, and 10pm or on Channel 2 (the CW) at 7pm.  I believe it will also be streaming live on and

Thanks for all of your support. 

The Tenley Project continues!

I had a great time today dropping off 10 American Girl dolls plus hundreds of dollars of "toys for boys"!  I would love to be able to buy more toys and dolls before Christmas (I already have two dolls I need to buy thanks to L.L, and W.L ...... a total of TWELVE dolls so far).  I'm excited to make another trip to the hospital before Christmas!

I would love for this project to run year-round so donations are always welcome.  100% of the money donated will be used to buy toys and American Girl dolls for The Children's Hospital of Denver throughout the year. 

Children's Hospital of Denver

Tenley and her new friend Gracie. 

See Tenley and Mom on KWGN's morning show

Embedded video here:


Click here if the embedded video didn't work.

Waiting to go on tv and tell everyone my story

Pretty exciting.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

TEN American Girl dolls...

and one more in the works.  We picked out two more dolls tonight plus a cute doll outfit (thanks to more donations)!

Tomorrow is the big day and I am excited to be on TV and share my story.  I'm really looking forward to going to the hospital and donating all of the dolls and toys.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Eight dolls....soon to be NINE!

We trekked to the American Girl store to buy doll #8 (thanks A.S.).  Apparently we'll be trekking back there tomorrow thanks to A.B. and his generous donation.

Eight dolls and over $200 in "toys for the boys"!  Amazing.

In memory of Taylor Grace Warner

Tragically, the 17-month old daughter of one of our friends passed away November 14, 2010 following a car accident.  With the permission of her family, the dolls will be donated to Children's Hospital of Denver and the Ronald McDonald House in her memory.

To read more about Taylor Grace Warner, click here.

Heading to the American Girl store for doll #8!

Yes, 8!!
I will post new pics after we get back.  Thank you to everyone who has participated so far! 

Friday, December 17, 2010

I'm going to be on TV! iTenley!

The Everyday Show on WGN contacted me and wants to put me on tv next Monday to talk about all the giving that I'm doing.  I did this just to make sure that kids in the hospital had great gifts for Christmas, but I'm excited about being on tv -- hopefully it inspires others to be generous too.

All the stuff

Here's all the presents that I've picked up with the generous donations from everyone so far.

How this whole doll thing started

My dad was nice enough to let me re-publish this post from his blog -- you can find the original post here.

How to learn about giving through the actions of a 5-year-old

It didn't start out as charity.

It started out as a 5-year-old girl who wanted a present for Christmas many weeks in advance of the holiday.

The deal we made with her was that she was to save up the money herself for an American Girl Doll (I believe she may actually have been told that Santa doesn't bring American Girl Dolls, but that's not relevant to the story).  So for about 5 months our daughter saved up her money to purchase an American Girl Doll -- she saved her allowance, she did extra chores for extra allowance, and she even tried to get creative with the change from purchases that she made with our money.  A few weeks ago she had saved up $97.00, only $3.00 short of the approximate $100.00 that it takes to get one of the dolls with tax.

Before she got so close to her goal, I had been listening to some Anthony Robbins tapes.  I'll paraphrase one of his keys to wealth and happiness with the following 3 points:

  1. Give with no expectation of receiving anything in return; do it because it feels good.
  2. Give when its hardest for you to do so -- when it's hardest is the best time to give.
  3. Give away a percentage (10% is what he recommends) of your money to reset your brain that there is actually enough.

I shared this recording with my wife and then we chatted about it further on a ski lift.  At some point we we got to talking about how close my daughter was to her savings goal and that's when I put them together: how cool would it be if we could get my daughter to take her nearly $100.00 and, instead of buying the doll for herself, use the money to purchase the doll for someone else?  And not just anyone else, but perhaps a little girl that was unfortunately having to spend the holidays in the Denver Children's Hospital (note that we already do some charity with the Ronald McDonald House at the Denver Children's Hospital already as a family, so this wasn't too much of an out-of the-blue benefactor).

In thinking through it a little more, we decided that we needed a little bit more of a carrot for our daughter, so I proposed that we match her nearly-$100.00 with $100.00 of our own money (in cash, of course) for her to buy a second doll, but that she had to also give that doll to someone in the hospital.  Remember that as you get older, it's easier to follow Robbins' advice, but for a 5-year-old that has saved for many months, the prospect of giving up all that hard-earned money was likely to be a bit of a challenge.

So, armed with the plan, we took our daughter out to lunch and near the conclusion of her cheeseburger, we simply threw out the idea of her buying a doll for a girl in the hospital with her money.  Her initial reaction was that she wanted to use her money to buy herself a doll at Christmas and then she would save to buy another doll for a girl in the hospital -- a pretty remarkable response from someone so young, if you think about it.  We spent some more time explaining to her about how there will people in need and that it wouldn't be any fun to be in the hospital at Christmas.  Then we threw the offer of the matching funds out there and pointed out that because Santa was paying extra attention this time of year, she could score some major "nice list" points.  After weighing that internally, the 5-year-old got pretty excited -- she was on-board.

Due to the nature of the timing of everything, my wife took my daughter to the American Girl store to pick out the 2 dolls.  While there, our daughter took the opportunity to inform the manager of what she was doing -- apparently the manager almost cried.

Following that, my wife posted the following on her Facebook account:
I am so proud of my 5 year old kiddo. She saved up all year to buy an American Girl doll....and when she finally had the $100...she decided to buy the doll and donate it to Children's Hospital of Denver. We matched her donation so next week we will deliver two American Girl dolls to the hospital and hopefully give them directly to two little girls. I'm speechless that I have raised such a cool kid.
And following that, others that wanted to participate started leaving messages.  I started telling the story to people as well ... and they started handing me cash wanting to participate.  So, at this point -- we're at 7 dolls and counting (not including the $100.00 that was provided by someone for a gift for a boy).

We've been in touch with the Children's Hospital and our daughter will be delivering everything during the middle part of next week, so that the families of the kids that will receive them will have them in-hand prior to the holidays.

Thanks to everyone for your generosity and willingness to participate in not only the worthy spirit of giving with no expectation of anything in return, but also in teaching our daughter an important lesson.

PS -- if you find yourself inspired to participate in giving something to someone, I certainly hope that you do.  If you find yourself particularly inspired to participate with us, and that certainly wasn't the point of this post [edit -- just click the "Donate" link at the top].