Monday, February 27, 2012

Set-Up, Next Meeting and Stuff

Friday was a crazy, busy day at the Bin.  I was happy to have Isabel Freeman and Destiny London there because between organizing and pulling for this Thursday's set-up (see below), we had a LOT of donations.  TWC volunteers Patty Colvig and Deborah Kashinsky brought loads of items by and instead of putting it away, we bagged it up with the new set-up.  Also, we had two non-TWC members stop by with a load of stuff including an area rug, duvets, duvet covers, mugs, tchotchkes and other things I don't know how to spell!  And then a lady stopped by and handed me $20. When I asked her if I could give her a receipt, she said, no, please just use it where it is needed most.  We will put it in our funds to use for fresh food at a set-up.

 Destiny has volunteered to help out but this is a three bedroom, two-bath apartment for a family of six.  Two teenage boys, a nine-year old girl and a two-year old little girl and a mom and dad.  As I said above, Destiny and Isabel helped me grab everything for this. We still need a QS mattress pad, a twin mattress pad, three pillows, sponges, dustpan and broom, household cleaner, tall trash can and single sheets (one set for a boy...remember, gently used sheets are welcome). Everything else is pulled and ready to go.  We will definitely need at least two cars for this set-up as we also have four big blue Ikea bags of infant to one year old clothing for boys and girls that Nancy Hanson and I 'decanted' last week.  We have so much infant clothing that just to free up space Karen and I thought that moving it along would be a good idea.  So, if anyone can help out with this set-up or purchase any items that would be terrific.  I'll wait until Wednesday to do my discount shopping for any shortfall.  We'll gather at Pine Tree Circle near the Bin at 9 AM this Thursday.  Let me know if you can help out in any way.

THE TOPANGA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE 63rd ANNUAL AWARDS CELEBRATION was on Saturday night and Topanga Women's Circle was awarded the Non-Profit Business of the Year. Karen and I were proud to accept the kind words, merit placques and beautiful artwork by Robin Feely Topanga on behalf of all our volunteers, without whom this little charity would be nothing.  TWC was well represented and we filled our allocated two tables for 10 so quickly that some volunteers had to sit at other tables.  Thanks for all your support ladies.  It was a wonderful evening and our heads are still spinning.

NEXT MEETING:  Saturday, March 31 at Catherine Grasso's home.
Sometime in the afternoon with more info to follow.  This meeting will be a busy one when we put together as many Mother's Day cards as possible.  This is also reminder that if you have some photos that you would like to go on the cards you sell/give, bring them with you.  We'll supply the card stock, envelopes, beautiful pre-printed vellum insert.  

Noelle Berman has kindly agreed to print the vellum for us (again!).  Thanks so much Noelle; this is an incredibly gift.  We will get the vellum to you within the next week and the insert document (will send as email attachment to you).

Sunday, February 5, 2012

First Meeting of the New Year

We had a terrific and delicious meeting on Wednesday night at the lovely home of Sue Forbes.  Sue made us all welcome and we were all able to gather 'round her farmhouse kitchen table to enjoy the delicious treats everyone brought. As always, there was a terrific mélange of great foods and great company.  We were so comfy at the table that we decided to stay there for our meeting.  

Thanks to all attendees for coming out and making such great contributions to the evening and welcome new member, Linda Bolhuis! I'll keep it simple and outline what we covered below, but first want to thank everyone for all their terrific donations which included lots of new boxes of crayons, coloring books, sketch pads, non-perishable food, a tea kettle, some artificial flowers, cloth napkins and other goodies which I can't remember.  What I do remember is Karen and I forgot to ask someone to take meeting notes so this is all from memory.  Please excuse all errors and omissions. 

1.  Firstly, if you would like to join us at the Topanga Chamber of Commerce's Annual Awards Celebration (Saturday evening, February 25) where TWC is being honored, please order your ticket now and let them know you'd like to be at one of our tables at Froggy's.  Here's the link for ordering tickets:

2.  Karen and I shared a couple of handouts with everyone so for those of you who were unable to make the meeting, these are available for pickup down at the Bin. Be sure to pick them up when you stop by with your donations. The first is a checklist of the items for which we have an ongoing need which we've slipped into a plastic sleeve for safekeeping and suggest you could leave it in the car for easy reference.  Also, we have 10 copies for each member of our fabulous TWC flier.  Often when trying to explain to folks just exactly what it is that we do, it's easier to hand them something that is succinct and colorful. We'll also bring copies to our next meeting.  If you run out and need more, just let us know.

3.  Christmas for TWC was busy, but made much easier by the enormous help that Teresa Royer and an organization that is near and dear to her heart (PSI) so generously gave.  They completely took over the soliciting of funds, purchasing and wrapping and delivery of the gifts for all of the children AND their siblings at the Bessie Pregerson Child Development Center at Westwood Transitional Village.  Teresa was unable to make this meeting due to Bruce's birthday dinner but will be at our next meeting to give us an update.

4.  Talking about Christmas giving segued into the mention of a generous gift from Christine Gilleran, a non-TWC member, who gathered her girlfriends together for their annual holiday luncheon but instead of going out, she had it at her house and asked each of them to donate what they would have paid for lunch.  They then gifted this to TWC.  That very afternoon we had a call about a couple of Canyon families in need and it seemed that this donation was meant to be moved after checking with Christine and getting her okay, we paid it forward.

5.  Deborah Kashinsky brought some of her beautiful cards which are on sale at Canyon Gourmet.  Many of us bought some and if you're interested in purchasing cards, contact Deborah at They're terrific and blank so can used for any occasion.

6.  Mother's Day.  We spent some time discussing our annual fund-raising Mother's Day card event.  Geraldine had a beautiful photo entry to add to our card choices. While we like to keep the images focused on mother/child/family/home, Sue Forbes reminded me that last year she had bought images that featured flowers.  So there will be a variety!  Patty Colvig mentioned that she had bought quite a few cards last year honoring many moms and that they had told her of all the Mother's Day 'gifts' they received, this meant more to them than anything else.  So remember, start thinking who you would like to honor with a card.  Here are some ideas:  send to good friends, your own mother, grandmother, your daughter or daughter-in-law (if they've had kids!), aunts, etc.  Mention this now to your friends and take their orders for cards.  Many of our moms or friends don't need more stuff, so these are the perfect gift. Cards are still $25 and you can either purchase and send the cards out yourself, or you can place your orders with us and we'll send them out for you.

Note:  Mother's Day is March 18th in the UK and May 13th in the US.   Anyone who needs a card for the earlier date (me) be sure to let us know.

Noelle Berman has generously said that she'll print the vellum inserts for the cards and we are hugely appreciative that she's doing this for us...again!!!  Thanks, Noelle. 

It was also suggested that we set up our card table at the Farmer's Market to sell Mother's Day cards.  Any other ideas for sales? 

7.  Catherine Grasso has offered to host the next meeting and we've decided to have it on a Saturday afternoon where we'll collate cards (attach picture and vellum insert to cards).  It will be on either March 24th or the 31st.  We'll soon confirm which day. Any early orders can be addressed at this time and mailed closer to the date. 

8.  We need one more volunteer for Bin Duty this month on February 24 and we will get to work on a sign-up sheet for March/April/May/June which Nancy Hanson will be send out soon. Anybody free to help?

February 3:  Geraldine Flaxman & Karen Sherwood
Feb 10: Deborah Kashinsky & Lisa O'Laughlin
February 17:  Nancy Hanson & me (Lin Ilsley)
February 24:  Lisa O'Laughlin & __________________