Countdown to Christmas has started in real earnest because tonight it was the party meeting of the local WI.Of course there was quite a bit of serious business to complete not least the announcement of who was going to be responsible for what next year and how to pay our subscriptions and claim Gift Aid on them for the first time.Like all WIs we are celebrating the national 100 year anniversary in 2015. It was announced that our WI was celebrating with an excursion to Denman College in October, coachride door to door and a programme just for us.Everyone was delighted to hear of this plan although we knew that in order to really deserve it we were being asked to lend a hand when the centenary baton comes to Winslow in April and when we stage a big promotion in the town in July.There's no such thing as a free lunch! We were also directed towards forthcoming events in March and told that unfortunately it was not our turn to send a delegate to the AGM in the Albert Hall in June.
Then it was time for a gorgeous food buffet and a good quiz and a frenzied competitive craft activity which allowed us to get thoroughly stuck up with glue and selotape to produce a fairytale castle with a sleeping beauty within. I think that was what we were doing because there were some quite spectacular presentations of toilet rolls which looked a bit like that!
Did you read that article in the Buckingham Advertiser from a new member of Buckingham WI who is enjoying being a member, a committee member and managing to fit it in to her busy work schedule as a doctor? It shows it can be done and she writes so positively and enthusiastically about the opportunities both past and present within the WI movement.I bet that attitude will stir up some women to join in the new year.
Today a lot of WI members from the north of the County gathered at a private house in Stony Stratford to view items transported up from the WI shop in High Wycombe.Unfortunately a similar event planned for Great Missenden had to be cancelled because of illness.The regulars who attend the Christmas shop have come to think of it as the start of Christmas and we also look forward to the homemade mince pies that are always served during the day.It is a very social event and it would be a pity if this tradition came to an end. It is a long way down to Stuart Lodge so that northern members don't often have the opportunity to see what there is on offer down there and certainly do not know of the wealth of craft items now on sale in the shop.
Most of the members of the local WI reading group had enjoyed reading Nigel Slater's "Toast". Subtitled the Story of a Boy's Hunger it was a semi-autobiography---if there is such a category. It told of his unhappy childhood and of his growing determination from a fairly young age to become a chef. The author had hung his story on items of food remembered from his early years, a lot of which had appeared as newspaper articles or in magazines which was a different approach and worked well until the final stages when he actually went out into the world and became a chef. Then some of us lost interest and I began to worry about the state of his teeth after years of gorging on sweets and sugared confections.Perhaps a braver soul will tweet him to enquire into his dental health