Monday, February 28, 2011

Update on meetings, PAA donations for 2010 & more

March 1, 2011

Good Morning, Dear Members,

Many thanks to all who made the trek to Redwood City for our meeting at Harry’s Hofbrau.  We had a delightful time and shared a great deal of information.  Not the least of which were our goals for 2011:  to recruit members; to find an appropriate meeting venue; to sell the remaining cookbooks – meeting our goal of 10,000 sold; to support all our projects including our new endeavor “Restaurants with Heart and to enhance the use of our Website.  In our general meetings and in this blog, I will keep you apprised of the progress on each of our goals.

I’d like to share this note I received from Victoria Applegate.  Victoria is the V.P. and Director for all the auxiliaries. 

“Palo Alto auxiliary’s numbers are remarkable, especially when you add the extraordinary support from the membership.  You’ve all worked so hard to continue and broaden your events, and to create successful new fundraisers like Restaurants with Heart.  Your members are very generous on a personal level, too, with their financial donations and their heartfelt gifts of bears and pillows and tote bags and so much more.  Please accept our deepest thanks.”

Doesn’t that make you feel good all over!!


·      MARCH 15 General meeting  is 1:00-3:00 at the Forum, 23500 Cristo Rey Drive in Cupertino. Lunch is at noon. If you would like lunch, Elizabeth Modina will need to have your check and reservation or you can call her by March 8th (650) 625-0761. Please write your check for $20.00 made out to Elizabeth Modina. (Lunch is $15.00 plus $47.50 for service which will be divided amongst the number of those having lunch.  You will be reimbursed should it be less than $20.00).  You may call her or write your entrée choice at the bottom of your check.  Entrée choices are:

Assorted Fresh Fruit with choice of Cottage Cheese
Tuna, Chicken or Shrimp Salad
Diced Chicken, Avocado, Egg, Tomato, Cucumber & Blue Cheese, Bacon & Choice of Dressing 
Grilled Chicken  Monterey Jack Cheese in a Flour Tortilla, service with Salsa & Guacamole

·      MARCH 8 Teen Van Visit.  Noon at East Palo Alto High School IN MENLO PARK. 475 Pope Street, Menlo Park.  Parking in front of high school and on side streets.  Van is at rear of school  Walk through the breezeway from the front to the back of the school to reach the Teen Van. Dr. Ammerman will give us a tour and Dr. Margaret Deanesly will join us. Members can bring travel size toiletries or gift cards for the teens.  (For suggestions see the PS at the end of the February Blog)For those who wish to have lunch before or after the noon tour, Mike’s Café is near, 150 Middlefield Road (near Willow Road) in Menlo Park.

·      APRIL 19 GENERAL MEETING has been rescheduled to the VINTAGE GALS LUNCHEON on APRIL 14. We will have just a few announcements at the luncheon (which Gerry tells me is for all who would like to come, not just the “Vintagers”).

·      MARCH 22ND AND 23RD  Restaurants with Heart selection is BONA Restaurant in Menlo Park, offering exquisite Polish cuisine fit for Queen Bona, 16th century queen of Poland.  Details and registration are our website.

It has been an incredibly busy month since last we “talked”.  Just a few notes from the many Association of Auxiliaries meetings I have had to attend.  There will be more in detail on the April Blog.  This is the 2010 report from the Association of Auxiliaries
2010 Gift Report
Palo Alto Auxiliary

Palo Alto Auxiliary contributions:                  $   60,340.00
Direct contributions from members:                300,939.31  
                                    TOTAL:               $ 361,279.31

92 members, or 38% of membership, donated directly out of 240 member total

Cumulative giving from seven Auxiliaries:

Total Auxiliaries contributions for 2010:                 $   988,279
Total member contributions for 2010:               697,863
                                    TOTAL:               $1,686,142

Venue Update:  Work continues on finding the right place for us to meet. Thanks to all who have investigated and/or sent in suggestions.  Know that all suggestions are being followed up on. Report will be given at membership meeting.

  • Roger and Deborah Potash are the designers/creators of our lovely Restaurants with Heart flyers.
  • That all our sister auxiliaries wanted a copy of our PAA Brochure to create one for their auxiliary.
  • That many from our sister auxiliaries made reservations to our restaurants
  • That Charter Auxiliary has come to all our restaurants. Their Rummage Sales are Fridays 11am-2pm and Saturdays 9am-1pm 1228 Douglas Ave., Redwood City.
  • I have heard from no March birthday gals. We have no members born in March?  My goodness!  Please send me your birthday month so we can celebrate with you.
  • That Dallas Manning will custom make a pieced jacket for you for $200 plus fabric and donate that $200 to LPCH!
See you all at the Teen Van Tour on the 8th and at the Forum on the 15th.  Until then,

Luisa Pliska

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

President Luisa Pliska - We are an ageless, vibrant, undaunted and fun group

Good morning, Dear Members,

This is my first Blog as your President, please indulge me while I share a few thoughts with you before we get to the news and announcements.  For years I have been telling you what an outstanding group of women you/we are.  This has not been idle talk.  Allow me to show you what my eyes see.

When we joined PAA it was not only because of our mission – raising funds for Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital -but also because we enjoyed working together, cooking, serving and holding special events. For 70 years we successfully operated our restaurant.  Several years ago, the restaurant was closed and we were left with no restaurant and no weekly camaraderie.  Some members left PAA. We were devastated and for several years we became known as “that group that used to run the Allied Arts Guild Restaurant.”

Well, take a look at us now.  Yes, we are that group but we are much more!  We are also the group that runs Restaurants with Heart; the group that produced a national award-winning cookbook and sold almost 10,000 copies to date.  We continue to sew cough pillows and blankets, collect books, build teddy bears and make tote bags for the children at the hospital.  We put on the highly successful American Girl Tea and Fashion Show and host guest speakers at our successful lecture series. We continue to find new venues where we can have that camaraderie and continue to raise funds for those needy children at LPCH.

Now that you have seen yourselves/us through my eyes - be filled with pride. We have indeed reinvented ourselves. We are an ageless, vibrant, undaunted and fun group. Our hearts have a native intelligence.  Let’s tap into that intelligence and support our existing projects and create new ones. Sign up to work on these projects and enjoy time with each other again.  There is a job for everyone. The project leaders will find just the right one for you. Together we can make this a magnificent year for the Palo Alto Auxiliary.

Now, to the business at hand:
As you may know, we no longer have our meeting place at Nordstrom’s.  They will be using that space for retail. For two months we have been feverishly looking for places where we can meet.  Until we can find a place that is not too far south, nor too far north we will be a merry band of traveling troubadours! If you have suggestions,please contact me.

FEBRUARY 15TH  we shall meet at HARRY’S HOFBRAU, 1909 EL CAMINO REAL, REDWOOD CITY. 1:00 – 3:00pm. If you wish to have lunch before hand, plan to arrive at 11:30am.  It is cafeteria style (many choices and all of them good) You are welcome to bring your trays into the meeting room.

MARCH 15TH Elizabeth (Betty) Modina has arranged for us to meet at THE FORUM, 23500 CRISTO REY DRIVE, CUPERTINO . THIS MEETING WILL BE 1-3:30.  Lunch is available in the green room at 12 noon.  Reservations needed call Elizabeth (Bette) Modina - see PS for more info & phone #.  We will be on the second floor and there is an elevator.
At the beginning of each month I will give details on subsequent meeting places. So, please check our website regularly.

RESTAURANTS WITH HEART continues to be a success.  Many thanks to all who have come and brought family and friends.

FEBRUARY 21 AND 22, THE MANDERIN GOURMET, 420 RAMONA STREET IN PALO ALTO will offer lunch and dinner.  Please check the website home page for details.

BONA RESTAURANT IN MENLO PARK will be our MARCH 22 AND 23 RWH. Look for details in my March Blog

 GENTLE REMINDERS: We will send out a second dues notice.  Please remember to send in your dues as soon as possible.  We will be editing the directory and want to be sure your name is included.  We welcome some of our former members to return and enjoy working with each other once again for so worthy a cause.

Also – please send me your birthday MONTH. Phone: 650.593.9334 or 1567 Escondido Way, Belmont 94002 or email:

I am pleased to welcome two new members to our Board: DALLAS MANNING will be our Social Chairperson and Nancy Bronstein is Corresponding Secretary. I am equally pleased to announce that SHIRLEE STITES will be our “official” photographer for special events. Please check the website for more information about them and our new board. All of us are welcome to take photos at our events or behind the scenes (ERIKA CROWLEY has given us many such photos ) Hopefully she will continue as I am sure Shirlee cannot get to everything.  Once again -we welcome our three new members: CAROLANN BRLECIC, BARBARA BRAUN  from San Mateo and ERMINIA CALTABIANO of Watsonville.
Click to enlarge - 2010 Board: L-R - Sarah Beetem, Kathy Squellati, Luisa Pliska, Audrey Polster, Susan Kirtley, Marzette Woods and Deborah Potash

JANUARY 18, we held our Annual Membership Meeting and Luncheon at Michaels at Shoreline on January 18th Shirlee made her “paparazzi” debut taking photos of our 2010 outgoing Board and the new 2011 Board.  

2nd VP SHARON BRUGOS  (absent)
2011 Board: Sarah Beetem, Nancy Bronstein, Kathy Squellati, Luisa Pliska, Susan Kirtley, Deborah Potash -
click to enlarge

Many thanks to MARZERTTE WOODS, KAREN STEVENS AND AUDREY POLSTER. for their fine work during their tenure on the 2010 Board.

Two husbands were honored for their work for PAA.  ROGER POTASH for  his incredible work setting up our virtual office and BOB STEVENS (in absentia) for developing our beautiful website and being our webmaster.  We are eternally grateful to both of them. A donation of $100 each in their name has been donated to the hospital.
Roger and Deborah Potash

Click on image to to enlarge

Click to enlarge - Names above are in order
I welcome your thoughts and desires for PAA.  Please feel free to contact me.  See you all at Harry’s Hofbrau on the 15th.  Until then,

Luisa Pliska
President, Palo Alto Auxiliary

P.S. For those who would like lunch, Elizabeth(Bette) Modina has arranged for us to have lunch  at noon in the Green Room. Lunch is $15.00 plus $47.50 for service (this 47.50 will be divided amongst the number of those having lunch.)  Bette will let us know how much we each owe her after she has all the reservations.  For those who were not at the general meeting,you will need to call Bette and make your reservation and choice of entree prior to the meeting. Checks should be made out to Elizabeth Modina  She also will accept cash.

TEEN VAN VISIT on MARCH 8 is at noon at East Palo Alto HIgh School IN MENLO PARK. The address is 475 Pope Street, MENLO PARK. There is parking in front of the high school and on side streets.  The Van is located at the rear of the high school.  Walk through the breezeway from the front to the back of the school to reach the Teen Van.

The students will be at lunch but Dr. Seth Ammerman will be there to give us a tour.  Dr. Margaret Deanesly will also join us. Members can bring travel size toiletries for the teens. Other suggestions are gift cards from Target or movie passes which can be purchased at Costco.  NO SOAP please (too messy in their kits once they are wet) but shower gels are okay.