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A personal story of holiday giving (access required)

Somewhere out there is a 2-year-old who needs a tricycle, warm clothes and an Elmo doll. Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the end of the year, and my thoughts often turn to charitable giving, charitable works, and of course, tax deductions. My wife and I try to collect all of the receipts of our charitable donations since January, and determine if we have donated enough. It's hard to determine what enough is, but I never feel like we have. I had a pretty good run from about January to May, but once summer hit, it tapered out. So, we have some making up to do. I'd like the Comments section to this blog post to be devoted to readers' preferred charities (whether a charity that we can donate to, or a charity that requires service). Last week I found out that the Maryland Association for Justice's charitable arm, the MAJ Foundation, was seeking donations for needy families through the YWCA. The purpose is to "adopt a family" and to provide gifts for families who might not otherwise be able to have a festive holiday. Individual donors can either give money directed to the purchasing of gifts, or adopt a specific family and buy the gifts themselves. I chose to adopt a family. Here's why: