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Woodbury family's goodies go toward international goodwill

New Life Academy senior Marta Lehn was in charge of the French silk fudge as part of her family’s annual bake sale to benefit the World Vision organization. (Staff photos by Amber Kispert-Smith)

The flour was flying last week as the Lehn family members busied themselves in the kitchen baking for the family’s annual bake sale.

For the past 11 years, Woodbury resident Carole Lehn and her family have held a bake sale to help raise money for the World Vision organization.

“This time of year it’s so easy to become focused on yourself and your Christmas wish list,” Lehn said, “so, this is a way to give back. It gives a lot more meaning to the season.”

World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization dedicated to working with children, families and communities worldwide to tackle the causes of poverty and injustice.

“The organization reaches the world’s very poorest people,” Lehn said. “The organization really tries to help them get back on their feet.”

Last year alone, the Lehn family raised $3,000 for the organization by selling 88 2-pound tubs of cookie dough,  108 loaves of banana bread, 25 French apple pies, 71 cranberry pistachio Christmas barks, 60 peppermint barks and 72 pounds of French silk fudge.

“These are the things that people really like and they’re relatively easy to make,” Lehn said. “They’re not a real complicated recipe or anything.”

The Lehns will be taking this year’s orders, and making deliveries, all through the month of the December.

Baking for good

Lehn said her family was introduced to World Vision when she and her husband Joe sponsored a child through the organization.

There was one holiday season when the Lehns received the annual World Vision catalogue, which allows families to purchase a variety of items to give to families around the world such as dairy cows, dairy goats, egg laying ducks and chickens, fruit trees, clothing, school supplies, fishing supplies and immunizations among other items.

“My kids just loved going through that catalog,” Lehn said. “They were just enthralled with the gift catalogue.”

For the first couple years, the Lehns would drop all of their loose change or allowance money into a jar, which would then go toward the purchase of a goat or other items.

“We put a jar on the counter and called it the goat jar,” Lehn said.

It was 11 years ago that Lehn decided she wanted to do something more involved.

“I felt like (the children) needed to invest more of themselves in something,” Lehn said. “It’s just so easy to put money in a jar, which is why we came up with the idea of holding a bake sale.”

Lehn said the idea of a bake sale came to them because it was something the family could do together.

Plus, the Lehns greatly enjoyed baking.

“It was something that my kids could help with,” Lehn said. “We pretty much do all the making of the treats together at home.

“It’s not my bake sale, it’s the whole family’s.”

Over the years, the Lehns have donated a total of $14,000 to World Vision through their bake sale.

Lehn said the family primarily markets their bake sale to friends, family, neighbors, church acquaintances and school acquaintances.

“Most of our customers come back year after year,” she said.

Lehn said she is looking forward to going through the catalogue in the coming weeks.

“It’s really fun to go through the catalogue at the end of the bake sale and pick out what to buy,” she said. “But my favorite thing is that I really like the time spent in the kitchen with my kids.”

The Lehn family’s bake sale will continue through Dec. 22. Items for sale are: chocolate chip cookie dough, $7; chocolate chip cranberry oatmeal almond cookie dough, $10, large banana bread, $5; large banana bread with chocolate chips, $8.50; small banana bread, $3.50; French apple pie, $10; cranberry pistachio Christmas bark, $9; peppermint bark, $9; French silk fudge, $9. Orders can be placed by contacting Carole Lehn at or at 651-731-8100.

Amber Kispert-Smith

Amber Kispert-Smith has been the schools and Afton reporter at the Woodbury Bulletin since 2008. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota. She previously worked as a reporter for Press Publications in White Bear Lake.

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