Tonight we shared the feelings of the younger members of our families as it was very much back to school after the long holidays.The Members listened to a very interesting talk about the fairly local Puzzle Tree Centre for autistic children. I'm ashamed to say that I hadn't known that it had international standing as an authority not on the diagnosis of autism but in the treatment and understanding of the problem.It is heartening to see what advances have been made in our lifetimes from when it wasn't recognised at all except as a mental problem to being seen as a curable characteristic with little to do with lack of intelligence.It is a problem condition for the family as well as the sufferer but it can be managed ; like most things, the earlier it is recognised the better.
We heard that our exhibit at the Bucks County Show had been judged a creditable third in the competition for a WI display on a country of the commonwealth. We agreed to send a congratulatory card to the winning WI because it was one from within our WI Group although it might be through gritted teeth. We had both chosen India. I think some of our members realised tonight why they had received strange e-mail requests for elephants of a specific size and with their trunks hanging down rather than nicely curved out front. Entering these competitions involve quite a lot of time and effort but it is a group undertaking and is good fun---especially if you do well!
We are arranging to visit the Magistrates Court in Milton Keynes in October and in the same week there is the Group meeting which sounds very interesting. BFWI has also asked us to host the baton-passing ceremony next April to commemorate 100 years of the WI in Britain.It was agreed to provide refreshments during the day.We were sad to hear that Sue Rand was retiring from the Board of Trustees. Our WI has benefitted from Sue's WI knowledge and help on various occasions so we wish her well.It will be strange to have such a small number of WI Advisers on the Board so her training and expertise will be missed there as well.
At the Craft Group this afternoon it was reported that the new WI tablecloth was almost in one piece and that it did fit the tables in use in our meeting hall which was a relief.We hope to unfurl it with due ceremony at the October WI meeting. Several members had visited by train the NEC at Birmingham to enjoy the Knitting&Stitching Show. Keen patchworkers they had been blown away by the quilts on display. There is one more session on the tablecloth and then we will be making decorations for Christmas with beads and sequins and very small pins which will not be too taxing to get in the way of the general conversation which is such an important part of this group activity.