Be My Valentine <3

We want to remember all the holidays,  so this is your official reminder that Valentine’s Day is February 14.

Now if you’re like me, you just got the credit card bill for everything you bought for Christmas. Or Hanukkah. Or your Rose Bowl party. Or Chinese New Year. Or Vietnamese New Year. And you still have your Super Bowl party and your annual ski trip over President’s Day weekend coming up.

Somehow your Valentine’s Day gifts have to be squeezed into your budget. If you’re planning to propose to your true love, our advice is to be judicious without being chintzy, forego the big screen HD TV until Super Bowl LII, and spend your money on the ring instead. For all the rest of you, our advice is to check out the ALI thrift shop.   We have beautiful costume jewelry, crystal, collectibles, Valentine cards, and much, much more. You’re sure to find something that will make your significant other’s heart beat faster, without overwhelming your budget!

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GET THOSE SLEIGH BELLS JINGLING . . .

Thrift shoppers and blog readers, we know you’re eagerly awaiting our “Holiday Extravaganza” shopping day when we bring out all our holiday merchandise for the first time! We have BIG NEWS for you. This year we won’t just have one Holiday Extravaganza Day – we’re going to have a WHOLE HOLIDAY EXTRAVAGANZA MONTH!

That’s right – we’ll be putting out NEW HOLIDAY MERCHANDISE on EVERY TUESDAY IN NOVEMBER! You read that correctly – TUESDAYS. We’ve collected SO MANY holiday donations over the past year that we’re going to be open for EXTRA SHOPPING DAYS on Tuesdays in November, 10 am to 3 pm. Every week in November, you’ll see different holiday items on the shelves.   You’ll have to visit us again and again to make sure you don’t miss anything!

So hitch up your horses and put the bells on your sleigh, and get ready for our Holiday shopping, starting TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 1ST!

Our newest gift idea!

iStock_000009799796MediumDid you know that the ALI thrift shop has GIFT CERTIFICATES? These come in $5 denominations and are a perfect solution for those situations where you need an affordable gift. Like these:

  1. You belong to a Bunco group where everyone has to bring a token door prize to award during the evening.
  2. Your 8th grade daughter wants to have a sleepover birthday party, and you need party favors.
  3. The kid down the street, who has been sleeping on his parents’ couch ever since he graduated from college five years ago, because he’s “writing a screenplay,” finally moves into an apartment, and you want to give him something to send him on his way. (You give his parents a bottle of champagne, however.)
  4. You’re the church youth group advisor/band mother/drill team chaperone or some other type of adult volunteer for a high-school group, and need a unisex-type gift or prize for the kids, that isn’t food.

See how easy this could be? Just visit the thrift shop and tell the cashier you want to buy some GIFT CERTIFICATES. (And while you’re at the shop, reward yourself with a little something, too!)

ALI RECEIVES AWARD AT CITY HALL

041605810456467_10151867185532255_4859917203299874926_nAssistance League of Irvine was honored on May 31st by the Irvine Prevention Coalition and Irvine Community Drug Prevention. We were one of three groups and 15 individuals receiving awards at City Hall for outstanding work in support of Irvine youth.

ALI was nominated by Susan Holt, a school social worker who coordinates the Irvine Family Resource Program. In her nomination, Susan wrote: “The Assistance League has provided basic needs support through their Operation School Bell Program for decades, assisting low income students to be ready to learn by providing backpacks, school supplies and clothing to needy families in IUSD. Over the last few years, they have gone above and beyond OSB by making additional funds available to help some of our especially challenged K-12 students with graduation costs, bus passes to get to school, additional clothing and gift cards for extra school supplies. For these students, even getting to school can be a challenge. The help provided by AL funds helps them feel more prepared and ready to move forward with their education. It is hard to describe what a difference these supports make for homeless kids who may also be dealing with extreme family problems and financial pressures, personal challenges, multiple moves, and housing and food insecurity.”

The Irvine Prevention Coalition was formed in 1995 to bring together resources and services to support children, youth, and families. Today there are over 60 community partners participating in the coalition. Their mission is to support a safe and caring community by working together to provide prevention strategies and coordinated services designed to reduce substance abuse, violence and related problems among our youth.   Preventive strategies take many forms – education about drug and alcohol abuse, encouragement of healthy lifestyles, and giving young people the tools to be successful in school and life without drugs.

We are honored to be recognized for Operation School Bell. But we couldn’t provide everything we give the kids through OSB without the continued support of our thrift store shoppers and donors! Thank you!

…wait a minute Mister Postman

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There are usually two major projects during the holidays.  The first is putting up the decorations.  The second is the Christmas cards.

ALI Blogger Marta says ‘I’m the person who is single-handedly rescuing the post office. I mail about 100 Christmas cards.  I’m still putting a holiday letter in each one, although the writeup gets shorter every  year (the adults in the family aren’t doing anything new, and the kids have already posted everything on Facebook).  But I love Christmas cards! In an era when we hardly receive actual mail any more, it’s wonderful to open the cards and re-connect with our relatives and friends once a year.  As creative as electronic cards can be, there’s something special and personal about the old-fashioned paper card.’

The thrift store has a wonderful assortment of boxed Christmas cards at unbelievable prices.  We also have some absolutely amazing hand-made cards on the single-card rack.  These beautiful, unique cards are produced by some of our members, who donate them to be sold at the shop. You may not need to send 100 cards, but chances are you’ll need one or two, so check these out.

And while you’re looking at our cards, drop by our stationery section – you may need something for those thank-you notes after you open your presents!

HOLIDAY EXTRAVAGANZA TUESDAY

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Black Friday! Cyber Monday! Everyone’s heard of those iconic holiday shopping days. Everyone’s probably SHOPPED on those days. And now – we’re adding a THIRD AMAZING SHOPPING DAY to this legendary group. Assistance League of Irvine presents: HOLIDAY EXTRAVAGANZA TUESDAY!

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 12 is the date of this spectacular event. All our 2013 holiday merchandise will be on display for the first time. We have so many holiday-themed items we open up our 2nd floor just for this sale. AND WE’LL BE OPEN FROM 10 AM TO 5:30 PM – extra time for you to shop!

HOLIDAY EXTRAVAGANZA TUESDAY is open to anyone – no tickets, no reservations required. Just be at our door at 10 AM on the 12th, ’cause if you snooze, you lose!