Saturday, May 25, 2013

Where Would We Be Without all our Terrific Volunteers?

Where would we be without all of our terrific volunteers?  So many thanks to those of you who donate so generously, who share information with your friends about how they can give to TWC and how they can join and just what donations we accept, who are constantly thinking up great ideas to make our collective lives easier and who continue to hold a special place in your hearts for those less fortunate.  As difficult as it can be at times, we remind ourselves often that we are not in this for any other reason than to help those in need.  

And so...we would like to invite all our volunteers to a pizza party at Roccos on Wednesday, June 5th at 7 PM as a thank you for all you do.  We will provide pizza and salads and a few of us will bring a bottle of wine as the corkage fee is $10, so we think it would cost less to do it that way.  Please let us know as soon as you can if you can make it via an email ( or or by phone 310.455.3850 or 310.455.1929.

And there are others to thank...there have been some angels in our little charity whose good deeds would go unsung unless we let you know about them.

Firstly, we would like to thank June Mayne who passed away not too long ago and was a special friend and client of Karen's for over 20 years.  June worked as a child development specialist at Cedars Sinai before retiring in the late 80s.  Because of her fundamental interest in child development, she believed strongly in the importance of the work of TWC and gave generously to our cause.  We will miss her support and encouragement.  She was a lovely woman.

And then last week when Karen and Mary were pulling for a set-up, Brian Gibson from Jalan Jalan stopped by, saying he had been curious about the Bin and just what it is that we do.  After being given a tour, he invited Mary and Karen to come back to JJ with him and he passed on some sweet donations that will add a touch of the exotic to the set-ups.

Here is another wonderful little story.  A gal in one of Karen's yoga classes heard about TWC.  We do tend to share (!) and brought a doll to class one day.  She had obviously been well-loved, needed some scrubbing up and definitely some help with her hair which was all matted and dirty. Karen got her clean but she still looked pretty sad and then she remembered that her neighbor, Elsie Stenson, used to make dolls, so she wandered across the street with a question for Elsie...What can we do with this doll's hair? Well, Elsie thought for a minute and said that she just may have a wig out in her shed, left over from years ago.  A few days later she called Karen and asked her to bring the doll on over because she found something that just might work.  In the style of Shirley Temple's ringlets, this wig was a perfect fit, but the first thing Karen was instructed to do was to cut off all the old hair on the doll in order to fit the wig properly.  As Karen said, she gave this doll a haircut that took longer than any haircut she ever gave in her professional career! Following Elsies careful instructions to  work from front to back and to keep the wig as straight as possible, she stretched and glued and pulled and glued some more.  All Karen remembers is that it took a very L O N G time!  Here are some before and after pictures!

awww...poor little thing and then...what a beauty!
Named Baby Dena after the donor who gave her to us.

And then Mary Morley had a great idea...she had an unused doll cradle in her basement that needed a little refinishing and some bedding and then look what she did!  I wish this picture was a little bigger but if you click on the picture for a better view! I am sure little Eioni is thrilled with her new doll.

Thank you also to Dana Briskman for referring her neighbor to TWC.  She donated the most wonderful books and stuffed animals and kids after box was delivered on Thursday and Karen and I got most of it put away while we pulled for yesterday's set-up.

And now on to this week's set-ups at Westwood. A big thank you to Pat Lester, Deborah Kashinsky and Wendy Skolfield for their perishable donations, to Barbara Waldman for donating the always needed cleaning supplies and personal grooming supplies and to new volunteer Randi Gottlieb for the art goodies.  I love the idea of including anything creative with every set-up so please keep this in mind when you pass a box of crayons or markers or drawing paper in the store!

And now some pictures! Lots of pictures of Margie because we are SO happy she is in full fighting form again!

New volunteer Randi Gottlieb and her friend and TWC uber-volunteer Nancy Hanson. Randi has been in the Canyon a year and was looking for some volunteer work and the rest is history (thanks, Nancy!). She needed no guidance and I know will be a great addition to TWC.

Holly and Margie

Karen and Margie

How many gals does it take to hang a butterfly?! How cute is this?
New pjs on each girls bed, too.  I love new pjs for the kids.

Open for business!

Love it when we set the table

Artfully placed throw to cover an imperfection in the couch. One of our great rug finds from Ikea.

The merry crew, including from left: Margie, Nancy, Holly, Randi and Mary and 
Karen behind the camera.

Set-Up #2 for a Veteran Mom and her Teenaged Daughter

Karen and I whipped through this little two-bedroom set-up
in record time finishing early as we had an 11 AM meeting in Venice.

 A lamp from Jalan Jalan

 Ready for action

So true

 A full cupboard thanks to the wonderful donations

All of these items should be part of our regular set-up

Peeking into the teenaged girls room.  I love the bright Ikea bedspread

Moms Room...a little more serene

The bathroom they will share

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Lots of Set-ups and Upcoming Meeting Info

May has been a super busy month so here is another blog posting that is light on words and heavy on pictures.  Please forgive me not giving all the shout-outs to those of you who were so very generous with your time and donations but I have misplaced my notes on these set-ups and am sure I will forget many acknowledgements.  A big thank you goes out to Mary Morley, though, for her tireless efforts in helping Karen pull stuff for the set-ups.  She and Karen know that bin every which way. She even came with us to Ikea to do a BIG SHOP...and I mean BIG. Now that is dedication!

I would also like to acknowledge Lenny Strand's mother.  She has made the most BEAUTIFUL quilts for TWC and they really are absolute works of art.  Lenny is an old friend of Paulette and Karen and his Mom lives in Minnesota.  So thank you Bonnie Strand in Alexandria, Minnesota! TWC is so appreciative of your generosity.

 Quilts by Bonnie Strand

Firstly, please mark your calendars.  We will have our final meeting (before the summer break)
June 5 at 7 PM.  As always, it will be a Potluck
 If anyone would like to host this event, please let me know.  I have written to Catherine McClenahan as she had volunteered some time ago to host the next meeting, but I know she has a super busy schedule so I will let you know closer to the date where it will be held.

Our Mother's Day card sales went super well this year thanks to all of your support.  Contributing to the success was the article in The Messenger and Geraldine and Nancy's card sale booth at the Topanga Farmers Market.  Well done, ladies! We will let you know just how successful we were at our meeting! 

But in the meantime, here is a little photo journal of the last month.

A single dad and his six-month old daughter moved into Westwood in late April.  Pat Lester, who makes the most wonderful things for TWC,  made a darling patchwork quilt and goodie bag for the baby which included wipes, diapers, shampoo, lotion, toys, etc etc.  I know this was much appreciated by this little family.

Baby's crib, all ready for her.

 Sweet clothes and toys for the little one.

Hopefully, a calm retreat for the Dad.

A welcoming living room

I think Karen did this set-up with Mary and immediately after finishing the set-up they headed out to do some shopping for the next day's set-up.  Busy times...and then they pulled everything and had it ready for the next day.

One of my dearest and oldest friends from Washington, DC, Kathy Parker, was visiting so she got roped into a couple of TWC activities including helping put Mother's Day cards together at Deborah Kashinsky's beautiful home.

And then, since that was more fun than work, there was a set-up waiting for her to, ahem, enjoy...Six people were moving into this unit:  a Mom, Dad, three little girls and a little boy. 

Before she knew what was happening, Kathy was sweeping and cleaning and 
getting into the way of all things TWC!

The bedroom for the two older girls

And the youngest two children with the little boy up top!

Loads of books for the children.

And then...another set-up...They were beginning to all blend together.

Teresa and Paula Dove, surveying...

And Linda Mann...all ready for action!

Linda tackled the kitchen

The master bedroom:  Before

and after

The older two girls were in this room.  These are bunk beds that need putting back together as two twins do not fit in the room.  We put the chest of drawers in the closet

The two little girls were in here.  New pjs for each of the girls!

The living room looks welcoming with the $20 Ikea rug and magazines (remember to save your old Sunset, Vanity Fair, Natl. Geographic mags, etc.  

A welcome dining room for the family

Cookbooks are always a welcome addition to each set-up

And finally one more set up.
This one was for a Mom and her four daughters.
The two Paulas:  Paula Fagan and Paula Dove helped with this one.

A terrific craft basket put together by Dana Briskman and family.  Something all the children can enjoy!

Cookbooks, kitchen tools and tea towels

A microwave oven that a friend of Toni Colvin's donated

Thanks Wendy Scolfield for the perishables...and someone else (sorry, lost notes)

Love leaving fresh fruit plus the beautiful welcome notes that Holly Baumann made

The older girls were in one room.  The cute, soft pillows on all the girls' beds were made by 
Mary Morley and her granddaughters. Great addition.

The older girls also had a desk...and a corkboard...and the drawers held some school supplies

The little girls will be comfy in here.

And two photos of the Mom's upstairs bedroom, complete with a beautiful rag road that Paula Fagan had bought for herself just days before when she was up in Big Sur.  She got it home and felt it didn't work and when she got notice of the set-up she thought it would be perfect for the Mom's room and it is!  When the room was finished Paula F. said all that Mom needs is a lock for her door.  This looks like a retreat!