Elf Report 2012: Quiana’s Story

I spoke with both of our families and they are in AWE of the amazing work all of you on the Elf Project did to make their lives better.

I do have to give some extra special KUDOS to Cy and Peggy for hand building TWO sets of bunk beds hauling them to MN and rebuilding them on site, and Icepick and Cathy for the third set dragged in and built, Terri and the bed man for the 3 emergency beds delivered, and George for managing the BIG truck and to ALL our new elves. You are a treat!

This year I added the word OMNI-SHAMBLE because even with all the unexpected chaos we had, this project STILL came out perfect.

The Elf team really worked hard to get perfect. I have never in all the years we have done this project has so many quirky things happen in one delivery day.  I felt like checking the zodiac. We had five elves call in sick (we hope today is better), and our healthy troops just picked up the slack, we had one blown tire, one $160 expired tabs ticket, three lost and frantic elves, a last minute truck rental, wrong addresses, lost phones, lost sheets, one truck unloaded at the wrong site, phones running out of batteries, and one actual hot-pink cotton candy barf on doorstep of one site. ( impressive)

We also made new friends and had a BIG reminder that we have a blessed life. I watched families come together and really celebrate the joy of just being.

I frequently remind people that this is not just an event—it’s a life-changer for every one of these parents. The energy and love that you put into the gathering, the shopping, and the support is felt in every molecule of the things we bring into their life. It is a wake-up call that they do not have to go through this world alone; they are loved and supported in ways they cannot even see.

That is the gift ALL of you give.

I thank you for your time, sweat, investments, and love for this project , and in spite of all the setbacks in the day- we had in the actual delivery- we collectively have changed 12 people’s lives forever.

And maybe even yours too. Be sure to pass this on to your teams, and pictures are on the Rich Chicks Facebook page.

All My best- Hope to see you next year.

Mickey Mikewoth
Founder, Rich Chicks Founder
Owner, Mikeworth Consulting

Post-Elf Interview with Quiana

This part of the interview was done while she is crying and screaming into the phone as she is walking around the living room the night of Christmas Eve.


OH MY LORD! It was so thoughtful and joyous. I just do NOT know what to say. Thank you to all of the elves for a wonderful home. I love everything. It is just my style, and I did not know how to even start asking or making this style. It is so perfect and I feel like I am in a different home.Everything is so perfect, I just had NO idea.

I could never have imagined someone would do this for our family. It is like being on TV or winning a lottery. I had no idea.  I am in shock and I just keep walking around my house. The kids locked themselves up in their room.

I can’t ever remember a day that they each had a bed. My daughter says “ now I do not have to worry if my shirt moves in the night”. I never knew she worried about her shirt moving in the night. All three just went in there with their beds and closed the door. They just wanted to be alone with this.

This is like they each got their own home inside of our home, a cozy place that is about them. My son said he feels more space in the house even though there is LESS space. Isn’t that crazy?

This whole thing is crazy.

I guess that’s because he has HIS OWN space. And the fact that we now have places we can sit and be together and not feel like we are always hiding in our room. I never liked our room more.

I saw all those gifts under the tree and I told them DO NOT TOUCH anything. Those are for Christmas day and we will enjoy that whole tree. I won’t let them sit at the table either until I cook something.

I don’t know , they might have to eat something that is not messy. Good thing we have a high chair and a second table. The second table was such a good idea. Now I can leave the table set.

That table was one that I had always wanted- it was like you people were in my mind and reading my dreams. That is the most beautiful table I have ever seen.

I do not want to move a thing.  That kitchen just made me want to start cooking, all the new utensils and the cookbooks.

I have NEVER in my life seen such a place that I get to keep. My aunties were so happy and now we can all just sit down and take a minute and enjoy the blessing of this roof – not just BE somewhere. We are now in a home, and a lovely one. This is just so joyous. I have no other words for what this is.

I have never KNOWN that the decorating could change my heart forever. I felt so loved it just stopped me, and the kids.

WHO would do something this extraordinary for us? My heart just changed. I feel lifted and bright.  Now I see that others can care for me.

I swear, I keep patting myself on my chest because my heart is ready to burst OUT. I can SEE what a burden it is to hold up all the world up on my shoulders. I keep to myself and try to just keep my kids safe. I could not of even dreamed to have ALL this for my children. It was like a weight was moved.But it was moved off by love. I do not have words to explain this. It is better that money. This feels like nothing I have known.

We felt the change as soon as we walked in the door. We all fell silent because we could see the reflection in the mirrors. We took off our shoes and silently walked up the stairs.

The kids look at me and asked- “What happened here? “ “We have been blessed. That is what happened here”. My head kept shaking like a bobble head.  And then they tore off to look at our room. That is not their room.

They aint never coming outta there. Their beds are so perfect and they had bags of gifts on their beds.

Jamel says “we can turn the heat down now” because the furniture will keep our room warmer, and I think he is right. It IS warmer in this whole house.

While they are claiming their spots The baby saw a box of pampers and went and sat on it and said “ this is mine!” . It was so cute! I said “yes, those are for you” and he was so proud.

I cannot believe the clothes for Kinean, he looks like a little man! Not a baby. He is going to look sharp and he will love all the toys. All those diapers- that is a huge blessing, I feel like I can rest a minute. I am always worried about running out of diapers. I have enough to last me a month! That’s craziness in my life.

All of this makes my head spin because I do not need a single thing.That is truly the oddest sensansation to have in my heart that I HAVE everything and it is perfect.

Did I tell you our toilet paper was wrapped? All in fancy paper, Each roll. That is something I never have seen.

It is like a contentment or a peace. I have enough of everything all at the same time. Our cupboards are full-up. The canned corn made me bust out in laughter because I remember putting it on the list for the baby. He loves his corn. Those fruit roll-ups made the older kids happy. They are probably eating them in their beds right now.

THOSE BEDS! I have never seen a bed so fine. It is like what I imagine a fancy hotel to be like. I can’t wait to sleep but there is no way I am going to be able to sleep tonight. Kinean is interested in his own little bed. I want to put him in it but I also just want to hug him and have him crawl in with me.

I want to get music playing and I already called a friend to come over and look at this. I need another adult to tell me I am not crazy. I just do not know how you all did all of this. The house was clean in a whole new way. But the best part is that I feel different in this house.

I was smiling ALL day at the mall because I was so happy to have a secret but I was nervous too. This is a big leap of faith I was expecting maybe some stuff under the tree, or something smaller. The feelings that are in this house make me want to turn up the music and dance all night. I have heard people talk about a house filled with love but I have never felt like this.

I really cannot think of one thing more that I could even wish for. I did not even consider I could wish this big- for real I mean.

I just had to let something new INTO my life. I was trapped inside my own fear and being in the shelter I just wanted OUT- anywhere I just wanted OUT of that shelter. That place kills a part of you. That i know now how much of me it had killed off.

I did not know this saying yes to this project could turn into THIS. You cannot explain this change in our hearts.

Everything is great and this has been a big twirling and swirling day.

I love the desk and the computer. They kids will sure enjoy that.

The restaurant was spectacular- I just stayed open about trying new things and I found out that I like flatbread and dipping sauce.

The family portrait was so meaningful and I was sure glad I had gotten my wish to get my hair done. I have a whole new look and new make-up.

At the mall the kids just kept running from ride to ride crazy to get on all of them.

This was like a dream to them. We had no worries all day. Those kids played like they had not played in long long time. They had no worry in their hearts.

This experience has changed me in so many ways. I cannot thank you enough.

Every single thing is meaningful and I just can’t name them all. My words have run out. I am speechless. Please tell all those elves that we felt the blessing and that it is joyous and loud.



About Karen

Karen Karsten, CPCC, CAC, has had several business careers, in government, finance, retail and publishing. Each career was a building block that helped her create the life she has now as a coach, writer and executive director of Rich Chicks and Creative Principle of Think You Can LLC.

Her companies, Think You Can (www.thinkyoucan.net) and Rich Chicks (www.richchicks.org) both explore the magic of prosperity and creating clarity about life values. Karen has total faith in the magic of belief. Notice how that works either way: belief of magic, magic of belief. Magic is there—in you, too. Take a moment right now and honor the magic in you.


  1. Really great article – I was thinking about a similar article which I will probably still write, but from a slightly different angle. Thanks for sharing this with your readersObviously a lot of others appreciate it too!

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