Saturday, October 1, 2022

Creativity Multi Media Piece

This my take on "Collage in Squares" as taught by Marta at Maremi Small Art Marta at Maremi Small Art. She used squares, but I decidfed to use circles.

This was made on a Canvas panel, with circles cut from assorted scrapbook papers.

I torn apart a sheet of Stamperia Decoupage Imagine LOVE ART Rice Paper to fit in the spaces between the circles.

Lastly, I shaded everything and added some Quote chips from the Tim Holtz - Advantus Quote Chips Idea-Olo Theories set.

Detailed Photos


Flowers & Butterflies Multi-Media Piece

This this my first true Mixed Media piece. Created the background and added the texture with modeling paste. Then painted with acrylic paints and Glimmer Mist Sprays - I didn't like the result.

So, I wiped it all off (rubbing alcohol works great for getting most of the acrylic paint off, even when dry), and started again. Took painting it 3 times before I like it.

Then added the painted swirly leaf chipboard, the flowers, and the saying. The upper right corner looked empty, so I added the 3D butterfly.

Detailed Photos


Monday, July 18, 2022

Food Banks


Contra Costa County COVID-19 Food Distribution Map - Link to Site


Food  Pantry @ Oakley Senior Center (215 2nd St) Every Thursday - 1 - to ANYONE...No ID required...bring your own BAGS, wear a MASK. GO EARLY for best selection (line starts at 12:30pm) WE ALSO CLOSE EARLY IF WE RUN OUT OF FOOD. SO PLEASE COME EARLY. Note: best to come befor 1. Line starts at 12. Food goes fast for selection. Not much left by 2

Ministerios Rey De Reyes Every Saturday at 3:30pm 512 W.2nd St Antioch CA 94509 Drive thru . We load your bags in the car 

Monument Crisis Center COVID-19 Emergency Food Distribution Monday: 9:00am-12:00pm Tuesday: 9:00am-12:00pm Donation Drop Off Hours: Monday 9:00am-12:00pm Tuesday 9:00am-12:00pm Wednesday 9:00am-12:00pm (If perishables please bring on Monday or Tuesday only.) 1990 Market St, Concord  

Genesis Church Grocery Share - Saturdays 9am-10am - 3727 Sunset Lane, Antioch, CA  - Every Saturday @ 9am. Get there early as our clients start lining up at 7am

Free Groceries - (Monday & Wednesday, 9 am-12 pm) Once a month for low-income individuals and families. Bring a picture ID and proof of address (PG&E bill, for example).

Food For Children - (Monday & Wednesday, 9 am-12 pm) Boxes of FREE healthy food every month for children ages 4-6 years old. Bring a picture ID and proof of address (PG&E bill, for example), as well as proof of child’s birthday.

Eatwell Nutrition – 71 Sand Creek Road Suite D, Brentwood, CA 94513 – To the Left of McDonalds Drive Thru - – 925-666-8719. We Accept Women Infant Children, EPT, Cash, Card

The Bay Church on border of Bay Point/Concord. Come get some free fresh groceries. Bring bags, no questions asked. Sundays, 11am-12:30pm. 4725 Evora Rd, Concord.

Martinez Adult Education Food Pantry. Drive by pickup. Tuesdays 3pm - 4pm. Main Parking Lot at Martinez Adult Education. 600 F Street, Martizes. Recieve 1 box of non-parishable food and 1 box of fruit & vegetables

Free Fresh Produce - (2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month, Noon-1 pm) 15-20 lbs. of Fresh Produce - twice a month to low-income individuals and their family. Bring 2 bags with handles.

Free Fresh Produce - (Pantry Hours: 2nd and 4th Tuesday, 4-5 pm) Twice a month to low-income individuals and their family. Bring 2 bags with handles.


A list of FOOD DISTRIBUTION LOCATIONS for those in need (School Lunch & Breakfast for Kids age 18 and under, C.C. Café - Lunch for age 60 and over, Contra Costa & Solano Food Bank programs, Brentwood Food Pantry locations, and Loaves & Fishes of Contra Costa):

(7 days of breakfast and lunch will be provided either in bulk service or individual school meals-multiple options available)
Brentwood Union School District and Liberty Union High School District provide FREE Contactless Drive thru/walk up Grab-n-Go breakfast & lunch meal services for ALL CHILDREN 18 years and younger (thru July 31, 2021).


BUSD LOCATIONS OFFERING MEALS: Brentwood EL, Krey EL, Marsh Creek EL, Mary Casey Black EL, Pioneer EL, Bristow MS, and Edna Hill MS at student pick up loops (for BUSD students & siblings beginning Jan. 11):
** All Locations: Wednesdays from 11 am - 1 pm
** Brentwood Elementary - Wednesdays from 5-7 pm


LUHSD LOCATIONS OFFERING MEALS: Heritage (lower student parking lot), Liberty (front of school by cafeteria) & Freedom (staff parking; in front of MPR)
** All Locations: Mondays from 6-8 am & 2:30-4:30 pm (Unless it is a holiday, then the day after the holiday)


** Food Bank Programs -(Income guidelines can be found at the bottom of this link:


The Food Bank provides 15-20 pounds of FREE fresh produce to low-income families and individuals twice a month. Bring two bags with handles.
Choose ONE location:
** Immaculate Heart of Mary, 500 Fairview Ave, Brentwood, 2nd & 4th Tuesday, 12-1 pm
** The Dwelling Place Church, 90 Village Dr, Brentwood, 1st & 3rd Sunday, 3-4 pm
** Brentwood Community UMC, 218 Pine St, Brentwood, 2nd & 4th Tuesday, 4-5 pm
** The Commons, 69 Carol Ln, Oakley, 2nd & 4th Tuesday, 2-3 pm
** New Covenant Church, 6080 Bethel Island Rd, Bethel Island, 1st & 3rd Sunday, 1-2 pm



** BROWN BAG offers FREE groceries twice a month to low-income individuals aged 55 or older. Only one senior per household can receive food. Bring a picture ID and proof of address (PG&E bill, for example). If you are interested in enrolling into this program, call (925) 676-7543.
Brentwood Community Center (Jan., Feb. & Mar. 2021) at 35 Oak Street (DRIVE-THRU pick-up: 2nd & 4th Thursday, 10-11 am)

** MEALS ON WHEELS OF DIABLO REGION This program delivers meals to seniors (60 years+) who are homebound, no longer driving, unable to prepare food themselves or do not have a caregiver that prepares meals. Meals are provided based on need and are not based on income.
For more information, log onto or call (925) 937-8311.

** C.C. CAFÉ LUNCH (For seniors age 60 and over) Brentwood Senior Activity Center (193 Griffith Lane, Brentwood)
(925) 516-5398 to make reservations for curbside pick-up (Tues. 10-11 am at the Senior Center).
Those interested in participating in the Senior Lunch Program must sign-up by Friday (the week prior to delivery).

Contra Costa Crisis Center. The Great Plates Delivered program is designed to support older adults in staying home and staying healthy by delivering three nutritious meals a day.
To qualify for this program, you must meet the requirements (age, income, household information, etc.).


BRENTWOOD FOOD PANTRIES & DISTRIBUTION (Pantries in other cities can be found PLEASE CALL in advance TO CONFIRM hours, availability of food & location
** Immaculate Heart of Mary - St. Vincent De Paul 500 Fairview Avenue, Brentwood) 925-634-4154 / Pantry Hours: Friday 11-11:45 am (drive-thru)
** Brentwood Community United Methodist Church - (Drive-Thru) 218 Pine Street, Brentwood) 925-634-3093 /
** Village Community Resource Center (633 Village Dr., Brentwood) Wednesdays from 2:30-4:30 pm


LOAVES & FISHES DINING ROOM & FOOD PANTRY ( Food is being distributed as TO-GO meals (Mon.-Fri. from 11 am–12:45 pm) at the following locations:
** The Redman-Pocahontas Hall, 1403 Main Street, Oakley
** The American Legion Hall, 403 West Sixth Street, Antioch
** Loaves and Fishes of Contra Costa, 835 Ferry Street, Martinez
** Saint Vincent de Paul, 1415 Simpson Court, Pittsburg


Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Start Decluttering in Your Bedroom

The reason I suggest this is that way, you will have a relaxing & calming space to start & end your day.

Rather than try to box up and tackle the whole house at once (which makes it an even bigger overwhelming job) take it slow.

I started with the bedrooms. Biggest tip - DO NOT leave the room that you are working on to put things away - that is what the box if for. No matter what room it belongs in, put them all in the same box. If you are going to be doing your closet - get some nice velvet covered hangers, it will help to make your closet look nice and the clothes you keep will stay on the hangers and not slip off.

1. Go through the room and toss all the garbage into a trash bag - put bag nearby the bed (you will find garbage hidden away).

2. Get boxes and label them – “Donate”, “Keep in This Room in Another Place”, and “Belongs in Another Room”. Get your favorite cleaner and rag, you will need it to wipe things off. Personally, I used laundry baskets or the Keep in this room and belongs in another room.

3. Throw a sheet on top of the bed. Start with one item - a closet, a shelf, a drawer. The easiest way for me was to dump the drawer (or shelf, etc) onto the bed and go through everything. For clothing - try everything on. Yes, it is a pain in a butt, but you will find things that you don't like anymore, that don't fit you right or that you wonder "why did I even buy this".

  • Dumping it on the bed makes it much easier to go through things rather than rummaging through the drawer, shelf, etc (and you can wipe out the drawer, shelf, etc) Once you go through it, put it back in its home and continue.

4. When you get to the closet - pull out all the non-clothing items and go through them first. Then your shoes (try them on and make sure you still love them). Now, the clothes. Either pull them all out or just part of them.

  • If you are holding onto something that you haven't fit into in years ("I will wear this when I lose/gain weight") - pass it on - if you do lose/gain weight the item will be dated.
  • If you are holding onto something like your wedding dress, take it out, get it clean and store it in an archival box to preserve it. Personally, I donated mine to a group that rents wedding dresses, gowns, and prom dresses to those that can't afford to buy them.
  • Now, try everything on in the closet on. Again, it is a pain in a butt, but you will find things that you don't like anymore, that don't fit you right or or that you wonder "why did I even buy this". You will probably be surprised at the pile of clothing you have created out of the clothes from your dresser & closet.
  • My suggestion is before you hang up your clothes, sort them by type. Then put them on your nice new hangers and hang them up. If you did your closet in sections, continue the process.

When you are done for the day. Take the donate clothing and put it in a garage bag and TIE IT SHUT tight. That way you aren't tempted to go back and pull clothes out. For the non-clothes items you are donating, close the box and put it in the garage or outside.

Take the garbage out to the garage can. Lastly, put the items that belong in other rooms away. Unless the room you are putting stuff away in is already done, DO NOT get tempted to clean the room - you will get to the room eventually. If the room has already been done, the things you are putting away probably already have a home so put it there or find it a logical home in that room.


Tuesday, February 22, 2022

Tips to Help Stop Junk Mail

I came up with these steps to get rid of all the Charity and Sweepstakes mail and catalogs my 95-year-old mother was getting. She was entering contests, buying things she never used and donating more money than she could have afforded.  It took about 4-5 months but these steps work.  She went from getting 10-15 pieces of junk mail a day to maybe 5 a week.

After seeing the success, I had with my mom’s mail, I did it with my own junk mail and got the same results.

NOTE: it takes about 4 months to get off junk mail lists because at least 95% of junk mail lists are not done in the company – they pay another company to do it.  IF you are still getting junk mail from companies after all this, see if they have an Facebook page and send them a message and if possible, post about it on their Facebook page.  I had to resort to this with some companies – mainly banks that kept wanting me to get a credit card.

These ideas sound drastic, but if you want the junk mail and junk emails to stop, you must BE drastic. 

NOTE – if you donate again or enter a sweepstakes again, you will probably wind up back on the lists again. If you really want to donate – send a money order and don’t give your correct address.

If you are willing to pay postage, send this letter to each of the companies that is sending you things. 

You can also use this letter in an email or on the charity Facebook page or in an email to them.

Basically, you will be lying to these companies, but using the “family member passed away” line will get you the best results. 

In the letter where it reads “CHARITY/SWEEPSTAKES” choose the correct one.

I am ANY NAME, and my mother (YOUR NAME) has passed away. 

I am requesting that she (YOUR NAME), see address below be removed from all your mailing lists.  In addition, DO NOT send any CHARITY/SWEEPSTAKES requests to “Current Resident” as my family & I are now the current residents and do not wish to receive your charity requests.

Under State and Federal laws, you are required to remove her name from the mailing list and refrain from sending her any mail without my prior written approval.

Do not rent or sell her name or address to other organizations

Your Name

Your Complete Address


For Catalogs that you don’t want to receive:

Go to Catalog Choice -  They work pretty well.  With a few catalogs, I had to write them directly. 

My biggest complaint with companies that have catalogs & also sell online is that when you buy something from them online, you start to get their catalogs in the mail as well.  EVEN if you tell them not to on the order form.  I have stopped buying from many companies that do that – I warn them first, wait the three months and if I continue to get catalogs, I stop buying from them.


Go to and to


You can also use the letter for any junk emails you receive when unsubscribing doesn’t work.

If that still doesn’t work, send this message

This is your final notice!!!

I have the right not to receive e-mails from anyone I choose and if someone continues sending emails against my wishes, IT’S HARASSMENT!

I have asked you to remove me from your list since XX.

Notice that I have also sent this message to the SPAM patrol, and I will repost it on the FTC site as well.

Next stop is contacting my lawyer.