Wednesday, March 8, 2017

March Newsletter

March is here and although the lion brought rain and hail this past weekend, I hope the lamb will bring us milder sunny skies.  We have our next General Members’ meeting coming up for Tuesday, March 21st.  It will be held at 1 PM at the Foundation office at 400 Hamilton Ave, Palo Alto on the 3rd floor. It’s a red brick building at the corner of Waverly. Parking is available both on the street (2 hours) and at the 3 hour free lot about a block away on Bryant just west of Hamilton.

 We are planning on a short business meeting and an inspiring speaker. Our guest will be Dr. Lisa Chamberlain, a LPCH pediatrician who is heading the Association of Auxiliaries chosen fund for the year entitled, “Talk, Read, Sing”.  The purpose is to promote early brain and language development by empowering parents during the critical first three years of life.  Dr. Chamberlain is organizing a program to give out children’s books at the four clinics run by LPCH as well as the hospital, especially to parents whose low incomes prevent them from purchasing books. 

A board member suggested that we show support by bringing new books for young children to our meeting. It’s really fun to buy a children’s book if you haven’t done so recently, there are so many available. I just bought four Eric Carle board books at Costco as my toddlers love the colorful art as well as the stories.  If you would like to make a donation instead or in addition, we always accept cash and checks.

If you need a ride, please call me and I will try to arrange one. I’ve had one member offer to give rides from Atherton and would love to have a few others offer so that we could have a network of rides from all directions, perhaps as our personal Uber service.

We are still looking for a member to serve on the board as VP for membership.  While Melissa Kertz is going to be working with members from the last four years, we need someone or even two to organize the Vintage Girls luncheon and the October Tea if you want to see them happen.
Restaurants with Heart goes south of the border this month with Quinto Sol in Redwood City. See the attached flyer for details and menus. Put the dates on your calendar: March 27 and 28th for lunch or dinner. 

Beargrams are always available from Gerry Nelson and are fun for St. Patrick’s Day, Spring, Easter, Birthdays, Mother’s Day and Graduations or any holiday you celebrate or as a Hostess gift. Also, Luisa Pliska has PAA cookbooks with lovely flowery illustrations by our own Carolyn Hofstetter.

Other Auxiliaries are busy, too. I took some donations to Charter’s new home last week (807 E. Bayshore Road, EPA). It made me feel good to be clearing out a closet as well as helping them raise money for LPCH. Upcoming sales are March 17 and 18, 10 to 1 and April 7 and 8, 10 to 1. Donations are accepted Tuesdays and Saturdays, 10 to 12 except during sales.

Our board will meet next Monday morning, March 13th, at the Foundation. Please email Nancy Larsson if you have additions to the agenda or want to attend. Members are always welcome.
Happy Spring!
Sarah Beetem

Friday, February 17, 2017

February Message from your PAA President

My daffodils are blooming in large yellow bursts and my native manzanita in tiny pale pink drops so I know it is early Spring in my yard even in the soggy rain.  It was also Spring on Monday when the PAA board met in the home of Marilyn Anderson, our new treasurer. She hosted a lovely lunch for the board and showed us her wonderful collection of whimsical teapots.

Marilyn also works with Charter Auxiliary on their rummage sales and reminded us to save treasures or look for more at their bi-monthly sales, which are now held the first and third weekends in East Palo Alto near the IKEA. You can see their information on the Association of Auxiliaries website at
The only other current activity on the Association calendar is our very own Restaurants with Heart.  Their next dates are February 27 and 28 at Divino in Belmont, so please think of them when you want to get out for lunch or dinner. Gerry Nelson reports that she could use more sales of Beargrams so remember them for spring events, hostess gifts, and birthdays.

The PAA Board adopted a budget for 2017 showing about half the income as last year. While we look for new events, please remember to save or find things for the Summer Garden Party Auction. We would love to increase both  the attendance and the number of items offered for auction this year. We already have promises of sports tickets and original watercolors. Tickets to plays, museums or sports were very popular so if you have contact with a company or team  please ask them now for donated tickets. Waiting until summer usually means that the donations are already given out and it’s too late. Other ideas include lunches or dinners, vacation rental properties, wine, baskets for hobbyists or treasures. We will also need large baskets and small items to complete combined baskets. You can bring items to any meeting or call me for pick up.

Our General Membership meeting in March (March 21 at 1 PM in the Foundation Board Room, 3rd floor) will feature a short talk by Dr. Lisa Chamberlain on the new program, “Talk, Read, Sing” which is part of the national Too Small to Fail campaign. The purpose is to promote early brain and language development by empowering parents especially during the critical first 3 years of life. Packard will be distributing information through their Well Baby clinics primarily to low income families. Early vocabulary development has been shown to be critical to later school success.

As a former teacher and current grandmother of toddlers, this is a topic dear to my heart. I do hope we will have a good turnout to hear Dr. Chamberlain.  If you need a ride, please call me and I will try to arrange one for you. We have members driving in from all directions and while we can no longer park under the building, we can park nearby in lots for 3 hours or on the street for 2 hours. (I promise to have you out by 2:50.) Meeting at the Foundation allows us to save on rent and give more to the hospital.

Our board is still lacking a Second VP for Membership to deal with the traditional functions like Vintage Girls or the October Tea. If you would be willing to help out, please let me know. We do have Melissa to work with more recent members.

I hope to see you all in March. If you have questions please try our website which will be updated soon, or email or phone me.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

January Blog

January News for PAA

Welcome to a new year! First, a huge thank you goes to all who came to our general meeting and luncheon last Wednesday. Despite some rain, I thought it turned out very well for the 60 or so who attended, thanks to the membership committee and our hostess, Catherine McGilvray.  Thanks also to Gerry Nelson for finding us the centerpieces, donated by Trader Joes, to Dallas for nametags and Stephanie Beach for organization Our outgoing president, Nancy Larsson gave a summary of the past year and presented Brian Perrone, the Senior VP for Development and Administration with our cash gift of $60,500 and a mention of our endowment gifts and our many gifts in kind. Nancy has been “promoted” to be VP and future President of the Association of Auxiliaries.

Our guest speaker was Brittany Lothe, a mother of a “micropreemie” baby boy who spent 153 days in the NICU and continues at age 4 to receive therapy and treatments at Packard. She spoke of the wonderful support given her family by the staff and volunteers. She showed a blanket given to her child, as it reminded her of the loving care of all involved. 

As incoming president, I mentioned some of our goals for the year, including finding one or two new fundraising events and increasing the size of the Summer Garden Party. With the ending of American Girl as we have known it  and our participation in the holiday boutique, we will be looking for new events and activities to add to Restaurants with Heart, Cookbook sales as well as Bears and Books, Tote Bags  and Thora’s Thimbles. 

I also introduced our new Board: with Cathy Murphy and Kathy Squellati as Recording Secretaries, Mary Anne York as Corresponding Secretary, Marilyn Anderson as our new Treasurer (replacing Carol Roland), Ginny Wilson as First VP for ongoing projects, but we still needthe VP for New Projects, and Melissa Kertz as Second VP for new members, have an opening for a VP Ongoing Membership. Nancy Larsson will serve as Past President and I will be President as we move into 2017.

I did some quick statistics with the 76 surveys that were completed. The largest group in PAA are those in their 80’s (26), followed by the 70’s (20), then 60’s (7) . While most of our new members are in their 40’s, there is a gap with none in the 50’s.  I mentioned that 5 in their 90’s turned in the survey and was told that we do have one member who has reached 100.  My favorites were the 14 who were ageless; they turned in the survey without circling an age group. I’d like to know their secret! It does help to see the reality of PAA today and to concentrate on keeping those younger ones interested and active.
A big thank you to VP Stephanie Beach who passed out new directories and folder covers to all who came or offered to deliver them to members. The rest will be mailed. Unfortunately after it went to press, several more changes occurred.  As they continue to occur, during the year, please look to this newsletter/blog for updates. I will be posting it as a blog on our website to encourage all those with computers to look at our website.  Updates on our board page and other details should be coming soon.
Please check each month for changes but scheduled dates for general meetings are as follows:
Tuesday, March 21 at 1 PM
Tuesday, June 20 at 1 PM
Monday, September 18 at 1 PM
And Tuesday, November 21 at 1 PM
Other dates to remember are Saturday, August 26 for the Summer Garden Party and Tuesday, October 17 for the Annual Tea.

We are hoping that a Monday meeting may reach some who are busy (or golfing) on Tuesdays. All meetings are scheduled at the Foundation Office, 3rd floor which saves us a lot of cash for rent elsewhere. Please phone or email if you need a ride, I’d like to set up a ride service for those who need it.

The board meetings are usually held the week before but we are trying to be flexible to encourage more to participate so please phone or email me if you wish to attend. 

Our current needs include two members to join the board and help with either new projects or old members: and ideas for new events. In this New Year of great uncertainties for many, our help may be needed more than ever. If you have questions, ideas, or concerns please contact me directly.

If you have forgotten to pay your dues for 2017, please send your check to Mary Koeppen as soon as possible and save us the cost of another mailing!!

Sarah Beetem

“I am a snowflake but together we are an avalanche.”

Sunday, December 4, 2016

December 2016 Newsletter

December 2016 Newsletter
We just wrapped up the year with a very successful Holiday Boutique at Allied Arts. Our amazingly creative and productive members sold $1700 of handmade creations. A great way to kick off the Season!
The accounting is nearly done and American Girl 2016 garnered over $25,000 in profits. Over cappuccinos last Monday the fertile minds of the AGFS committee bandied about all manner of ideas for the future of PAA fundraising. It will be an exciting 2017!
Throughout the year Restaurants With Heart brought in over $13,500! Our cookbook sales were $1200 and the Garden Party netted more than $6500!
We will be donating our 2016 gift to the Hospital on December 10. If you are thinking of personally donating this year, please send your contribution to my address, 1253 Richardson Ave. Los Altos CA 94024 by this Friday December 9th for it to be counted in this year’s gift.
I wish you all ….
Happy Holidays and a 2017 filled with good cheer!
And, I hope to see you at the Annual Lunch on January 18th...we have a lot to celebrate!

Dates to mark down
January 18, 2017 Annual Meeting and Lunch, University Club, Palo Alto

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

November 2016 Newsletter

November 2016 Newsletter
American Girl this year was a bitter-sweet success. While we had fewer patrons than in the past, our guests were rewarded with a more gracious dining and viewing experience than ever before. (And our wonderful volunteers were not forced to work at the breakneck speed of past shows!)  The models and the young commentators were wonderful. The raffles, souvenir sales, hair salon for dolls and girls, walk the runway...all added greatly to our proceeds. The table linens and sweet treats were well as 60 tickets for the Operation Care and Comfort Girls, thanks to you, our generous members! Fewer patrons, but fewer expenses.
We will have the final tally by the Membership Meeting this Tuesday.  If you'd like to get the news first, come to the meeting! Please rsvp to me. We will be serving wraps from Galata Bistro, so we'll need your order!
The Holiday Boutique at Allied Arts will be on December 3 this year. This time around we are calling on all to make a few ornaments to sell! We will have a few trees laden with our creations…now’s the time to start scrolling through Pinterest!

Dates to mark down
November 15  1 pm Membership Meeting at 400 Hamilton Ave, PA, Ste #340
December 3 Holiday Boutique @ Allied Arts, Menlo Park 10 am to 3 pm
January 18, 2017 Annual Meeting and Lunch, University Club, Palo Alto
These past 13 years of the American Girl Fashion Show and Tea have been amazing. I want to thank all of you who have helped us on this journey.
We started out as a naive group with more optimism than experience. The stories we have re-told over the last few days still make me break out in a cold sweat...the failed lemon bars, using  a bolt cutter after the cleaners locked us out,  model no-shows, the desperate calls to friends from book group to swim group to help out everywhere from stage management to dishwashing.
I’m glad to say that things (and profits) went up and up through the next 12 years. And along the way I have had the pleasure to witness the amazing dedication of our volunteers and to watch “our” girls grow from grade-schoolers through college!   I have made so many enduring friendships. And I know that the future of volunteerism is strong in both the “model mother” generation and their wonderful daughters.
Thank you All!

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

October 2016 Newsletter

October  2016 Newsletter
October means...Our Annual Membership Tea! We have many wonderful anniversaries to celebrate, friends to meet and some lovely tea goodies to nibble. If you haven’t rsvp’d to Dallas Manning I look forward to seeing you all again.

Dates to mark down
October 18  3 pm Membership Tea, 1253 Richardson Ave, Los Altos
October 25 & 26 Restaurants With Heart, dinners at Creola in San Carlos
November 2   6 pm Hospital Tour and dinner
November 11 & 12  American Girl Fashion Show and Tea
November 15  Membership Meeting (time and location tba)
December 3 Holiday Boutique @ Allied Arts, Menlo Park 10 am to 3 pm
Over 30 Vintage Gals met for lunch on perhaps the hottest day of the year! It was a great time of reminiscing, re-connecting and learning about different ways to benefit the hospital. This group has decided to reconvene every April and September for special Restaurant with Heart lunches. Fun with old friends AND benefiting the Hospital...can’t go wrong!  
The Teen Van turned 20 recently with cake and balloons. PAA member Cindy Dumesney and I got a tour and some wonderful time with Dr. Seth Ammerman. This is an amazing program with a mission that resonates with all...and maybe a special tug for members like Cindy who have teens of their own. We are planning to use some of the amazing “children helping children” energy to do some fundraising.
American Girl commentators & models, Saint Charles students with Kids for Packard, Notre Dame Belmont students, National Charity League girls and now Teens helping the Teen Van. A lot to love with these kids!
American Girl is moving right along! We will be taking advantage of the school holiday of Veteran’s Day of having the event be on Friday Nov. 11 and Saturday Nov. 12.  In years past a Friday holiday show has been very popular.
June Schiller will be contacting you soon to volunteer for this great fundraiser. A shift of a few hours in the dining hall or the kitchen is invaluable.
We are again offering tickets to Operation Care and Comfort for the daughters of service members. At this writing we have offered 20 tickets. Not only did those fill in minutes, there is a waiting list of 59 girls! If you have the desire to donate to any amount, please either send your checks to me (Nancy Larsson, 1253 Richardson Ave, Los Altos, CA 94024) payable to PAA or bring to the Membership Tea.
Restaurants With Heart Please join us on Monday, October 25 or Tuesday, October 26, at Creola New Orleans Bistro in San Carlos for dinner. Visit the Restaurants with Heart page at, to make your reservations. 

We have arranged a Tour & Dinner at the Hospital for November 2 at 6 pm. This is  wonderful opportunity to see our efforts in action. And a great way to share with your spouse the reason why you spend so much time working on PAA projects! Please rsvp to me by Halloween. Dinner is $30 per person.

The Holiday Boutique at Allied Arts will be on December 3 this year. This time around we are calling on all to make a few ornaments to sell! We will have a few trees laden with our creations…now’s the time to start scrolling through Pinterest!

I look forward to seeing you at any or all of these events!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

September 2016 Newsletter

September 2016 Newsletter
Where did the “lazy” go in “Those lazy, crazy days of summer”?  PAA certainly did not take the summer off…
The Cocktails in the Garden this past month was a great success!  In summing up the event Sarah Beetem (Silent Auction whiz) wrote:

At the Garden Cocktail Party the tip jar at the bar, many kind donations,  and the silent auction combined to made a profit of about $5,400 for LPCH.

We sold 27 of the 30 items to the highest bidder. Included were a French apartment, mountain homes, theater tickets, works of art, baskets of food, wine, baby blankets, and hobby supplies. About half our purchasers were guests of members, so we were delighted to see some new faces.

Nearly everything at the party was donated, with the food and wine a gift from our vice-president Haydee Navarro-Marshall’s husband at the Watson-Marshall Group at Coldwell Banker.  The delicious and hearty appetizers were prepared and presented by caterer Florencia Mejia from South San Francisco . The Larsson and York families donated beverages.

With both bocce ball and a putting green, guests had fun things to do as well as mingle with a very nice mixed age crowd.

The Japanese anenome bloomed just in time to decorate the perennials bed. And the warm evening was perfect for being outdoors.

Dates to mark down

September 20, 1 pm working Membership Meeting at Foundation Office,400 Hamilton Ave #340, Palo Alto (NOunderground parking available, street parking OK as our meeting will not last longer than 2 hours)
September 26, Vintage Gals lunch, 1253 Richardson Ave, Los Altos 11 am onward
September 26 & 27 Restaurants With Heart at Bistro Galata, Menlo Park
October 18  3 pm Membership Tea, 1253 Richardson Ave, Los Altos
November 2   6 pm Hospital Tour and dinner 
November 11 & 12  American Girl Fashion Show and Tea
November 15  Membership Meeting (time and location tba) 
December 3 Holiday Boutique @ Allied Arts, Menlo Park 10 am to 3 pm 

The September20, Membership Meeting will again be a working meeting! We will be snipping and assembling paper flowers for the upcoming and American Girl Fashion Show’s rainforest theme. All hands on deck! 

American Girl is up and rolling! Our theme this year is the rainforest. We will be taking advantage of the school holiday of Veteran’s Day of having the event be on Friday Nov. 11 and Saturday Nov. 12.  In years past a Friday holiday show has been very popular. 

June Schiller will be contacting you soon to volunteer for this great fundraiser. A shift of a few hours in the dining hall or the kitchen is invaluable.

Restaurants With Heart  Please join us on Monday, September 26 or Tuesday, September 27, at Galata Bistro Mediterranean Grill, 827 Santa Cruz Ave., Menlo Park, our newest RWH restaurant, for some fresh and healthy Mediterranean fare.Visit the Restaurants with Heart page at www.paloaltoauxiliary.comto make your reservations. 

If you consider yourself a Vintage Gal, and have not contacted me yet, please do!

The Holiday Boutique at Allied Arts will be on December 3 this year. This time around we are calling on all to make a few ornaments to sell! We will have a few trees laden with our creations…now’s the time to start scrolling through Pinterest! 

A commemorative brick will be placed at the new hospital soon in our honor. Here’s the rub…just 2 lines of 23 characters each. What should we write? Put your thinking caps on…there will be a contest!

Inspiring words from David Alexander, President & CEO Lucile Packard Foundation for Children's Health,

I'm thrilled to share this exciting news with you! Thanks to you, Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford was recognized in U.S. News & World Report's 2016-17 Best Children's Hospitals Honor Roll as one of the top 10 children's hospitals in the nation and the highest-ranking hospital in Northern California. Our hospital was recognized in all 10 pediatric specialties, including three programs in the top 10 nationally.

This is an exceptional achievement, especially considering we are the youngest children's hospital to make the Honor Roll. Since we opened our doors 25 years ago, our spectacular clinical and administrative leaders, amazing caregivers, and your generosity has made LPCH truly extraordinary. This honor is a testament to your commitment to provide the best care for children expectant mothers.

We are so grateful for your support and hope you will join us in celebrating. 
Thank you for all that you do.”

I hope you had a Fabulous Summer!…and I look forward to seeing you at one of our meetings, events or meals!

to me