Voting is closed. There were four email votes from people receiving error messages. Three were for #5. One voted for #1.
See what I crossed out? See how I deleted the poll? This became a "who can tell the most people about the contest" poll instead of a who deserves it the most. So, beginning now, at 7:25pm CDT, you must comment under a name for the number. Don't make this a popularity contest. Make this about which essay touched you the most. I am trying to do something good with this XO laptop while teaching my own privileged children a lesson. I don't want the lesson to be about popularity only. Please vote again. You have 24 hours.
One more thing . . .
It is acceptable, wonderful, lovely that some of you asked friends to vote for a certain person. What went horribly wrong was that a spam message (as the moderators of MySpace and Facebook declared it) got disseminated broadly--not just to those who were related, friends, part of a support group for some of the entrants involved.
Oh, Crikey! Such lovely words of why you chose one over the other. I'm showing the comments (with the one exception of the person who asked me not to. I wasn't referring to you, by the way, in regards to popularity. Honest.).
1. Who do I think deserves this computer? That’s easy. My daughter Emma.
She’s thoughtful, she’s sweet, and in her own words, she deserves the computer because she’s “smart and knows how to use it”.
Emma’s my little rock. She’s part of the reason I stayed sane after having her 3 younger brothers in under 2 years. When our family life was thrown into chaos when I spent 10 weeks in the hospital, she kept her sweet smile and plugged along. When my hands were chapped and bleeding from changing diaper after diaper, she brought me lotion and helped change diapers. When I need help cooking, cleaning or running errands, she’s always willing. She’s just a good little kid.
As far as birth order goes, she’s the second child, second girl of five. This means she gets seconds of everything. Yet she never complains, always takes what she can get with a smile. And never begrudges her siblings anything.
She also struggles with infections. She gets infections very easily and as a result has undergone test after test after test only to find that there isn’t an answer. Just a hope that she’ll grow out of whatever causes them. To combat the infections, she takes a low dose of antibiotics every single day. Not the yummy tasting kind, though, the kind she takes almost makes her throw up every single day. The bacteria she gets is resistant to many antibiotics, so the one she takes is it. And even with it, she still gets infections, which breaks my heart, because the symptoms of her infections are sad for both of us.
Emma started kindergarten this year, and I haven’t spent as much time working with her as I should. Since she is never demanding, I find myself getting to her last. She always gets booted off the computer by me and her sister, so to have her own laptop to learn and play would be a joy. A pure joy. And that’s what I want for my special girl. Something all her own that makes her happy.
When school is over she is already planning on cutting off more than 10 inches of her beautiful, unique, silky hair to donate to a child that needs a wig. And that tells you the type of girl she is. She’s a giver, she’s deserving, but most of all, she’s truly loved.
2. We have a neighbor who is 8 years old and has been diagnosed with Hodgekins and Non-Hodgekins Lymphoma. She comes from a very poor family and is very intelligent. I just think she would be a awesome canidate for your give away. She has to be homeschooled because her immune system is so low.
3. I am nominating a family with 4 kids, 2 large dogs, and 1 modest income. They gave up the competition and debt of modern suburban living for a lifestyle which many would call inadequate but which has enriched their lives beyond compare. Their kids are age-appropriate for the laptop. They don't have room for a hard-wired machine. Most importantly they would gladly give back to others in response to your generosity.
4. Hi, We are William and Rita A and have 6 adorable children. Four of them are adopted from other countries and 3 of them have that little extra something special called Down Syndrome. We are blessed beyond measure to have all of them in our family. William is in the military and we are blessed with good insurance but it sure would be great to have a nice laptop for the girls so they can use it for all their learning games and playtime.
We would truly love to have this opportunity to give our girls something they can use to better their education and this could be a good start to something great!!
5. My daughter is 9 years old and a 3rd grader. She LOVES computers. She used to have a desktop, but it is 5 years old now and full of viruses we cant shake no matter how many times we reload windows. When she was very small, we started using something called "Concept Development Therapy". It utilized a touch screen to teach her concepts like colors, numbers, letters, words. It was as though a light came on in her brain and she got it. My daughter happens to have Down syndrome. Computers have become a way for her to interact with the world, her voice when her words were not intelligible enough to be understood, via speech translation programs. It was her window on the world, a way to show her the things she loved even though we live in Maine, in the sticks, and rarely see much more than snow and loons and wild bears. We could see a circus and talk about the animals, visit Kenya, even tour Disneyworld, all from the desktop.
Choosing the top five proved to be more difficult than I thought. Please vote for the entry you feel explains the need the best. Who should get this laptop?