Tuesday 31st March
Nice to see you, to see you nice…
Had my first Zoom meeting with Sarah today. It was so lovely to see her and to be able to discuss things “face to face”. I am so pleased with the way she and Kathy are handling this very difficult situation. Got the second Newsletter for all members out today. Hopefully all of our members will know about the new Board of trustees and the two new Vice Chairs by now

Monday 30th March
At 10.00 this morning the whole Board of Trustees stopped and sang Jerusalem as though we were at the AFM. Even though I couldn’t hear anyone else singing it was a really special moment of connection. Thank you to Heather for suggesting it!
I made a short video of last years AFM today by turning the pages while Ray filmed it!

Sunday 29th March
Regrets? I’ve had a few….Today we should all have been at the IXL centre at Dallas Burston, getting ready for the AFM tomorrow. Here’s a few pictures to remind you all of last year.

Saturday 28th March
Decided to make some biscuits today- using the recipe which I always use for our Women Reaching Women events. They are known as Auntie Anne’s Cookies in the family and were featured in our Centenary Cookbook, Kitchen Wisdom as Women reaching Women Biscuits they are really easy and good to make with children too.

Friday 27th March
Tried an officers meeting on Zoom today. Nearly as hilarious as using Teams!!
Beginning to wonder if we will have to cancel events in June. Decided to wait and see for the moment.

Thursday 26th March
Check in with the Chair.
Sarah had suggested that I should record a message for all of our members so I decided to try to make a little video. I wrote a short script and then Ray filmed me on the phone working in the greenhouse. Thrilled to see that I had nearly 500 hundred people watch it!

Weds 25th March
Isolation in reality.
Today I met my neighbour Julie for a cup of tea- we were either side of the hedge at least two metres apart. Really enjoyed catching up with her,  going to do this every day. We are meeting for Tea at Three!

Tuesday 24th March
Technology! Ha!
Attempted to have an Officers Meeting using Microsoft Teams today. Hilarious.
I could see Christine but couldn’t hear her….
I could hear Veronica but I couldn’t see her …
And I could see and hear Sue but she was sideways on my screen. Anyway we got it all sorted out eventually and had quite a good meeting. It’s so much better when you can see people during a discussion.

Monday 23rd March
All change……
Sarah and Kathy are working from home from now on and we are sending out a letter to all our members via email. Hoping that most members will receive it and that someone may be able to print it off and pop it through the door of members not on email. It looks like we won’t be able to get the April Corunna News out to all members as we had hoped but I guess that’s just a sign of these extraordinary times.

Sunday 22nd March
Agreement reached
The email has been hot, hot, hot all over the weekend. We have finalised the list of events to cancel and postpone. Just got to inform the sub-committee members and then we can begin disseminating this to members. On a lighter note- have potted up the tomato seedlings – free food later on – they were a free packet of seeds!

Friday 20th March
Decisions … Decisions
Been communicating with the Federation Officers all day today We are trying to decide which events to cancel and which to postpone, hoping for better days.
Then the news arrived that Denman is closing for twelve weeks- obviously the right decision in the circumstances we find ourselves in. I am dreading ringing Sue , our lovely Treasurer with this news- she is still ploughing through all the refunds for the NFWI Annual Meeting.
On a lighter note I picked my first rhubarb today – just a bit and it was absolutely lovely!

Thursday 19th March
Office closed to visitors
Another digital decision – we need to protect our front line staff and their families- hope you will all understand why this is necessary. We are investigating ways for them to work from home should it become necessary.
As well as this Blog I am around on:
Instagram as askabusywoman,
Facebook as Harry Seckington
Twitter as annebuftonmccoy
do join up with me if you would like to!

Wednesday 18th March
Covid19 doesn’t look like it is going away any time soon….
Another digital decision today by the Board of Trustees – postpone planned events through April and May- same rules as before, we will sort out whether to re-book or cancel and refund once the situation becomes clearer.
We are in very good company…
The news is that the National Annual Meeting in June is cancelled. Massive organisational headache for Lynne and the National Team- we know- it’s hard making all this change work on a small county level.

Tuesday 17th March
I should have been in Chesterfield today ….
Representing you all at the Derbyshire Federation’s Annual Meeting. Cancelled due to Covid 19. Looks like we set a bit of a trend last Tuesday!! Cant believe it’s only a week since we started to really take all this so seriously and start cancelling and postponing things – they keep saying that this is a fast moving situation – too right!

Monday 16th March
Keeping in touch with our members
Is going to be a real priority for the Federation. The Trustees have been emailing constantly over the weekend and we think we may have come up with a plan. Lots more input on the website and social media, encouraging WIs to keep in touch with their members and something special for each and every member. Can’t tell you what yet in case we can’t make it work!

Saturday 14th March

Another digital decision made today- to protect the office staff and members we will be posting this month’s mailing to every WI. It will be a mammoth task for Sarah and Kathy ( not forgetting the Post Office!) as this is the big mailing with all the Yearbooks and other annual stuff for WIs- it is usually collected by the WIs at the AFM but that’s not going to happen this year!!

Thursday 12th March
This is getting serious now……
The email has been red hot today as the Board have made the digital decision to postpone the events we had planned for March. We started with cancelling the Quiz Final on Monday night and then Plastics Day next Wednesday as we had over 100 people coming and then realised that things were becoming quite worrying all round. We must protect our membership.
We will sort out whether to cancel and refund or re- book the events as the Covid 19 situation becomes clearer and hopefully resolved….
We are not the only ones!
I was representing the Federation at Leicestershire Federation’s annual meeting on Saturday- it’s been called off today.

Wednesday 11th March

The letter/ email to WIs about the AFM postponement is agreed and is on the way to WIs as I write. Sarah and Kathy have been working all day at top speed to notify the speakers, stallholders and everyone they can think of about the changes. Butterfly Bothers have confirmed they can do the new date.

Tuesday 10th March
I need a glass of sherry….
What a meeting today- sorted all the normal business in record time and then turned our attention on the possible fallout from the Covid 19 situation. Our priority is to safeguard our members and staff. Therefore after much discussion we have decided to postpone the AFM until June 22 . The staff at Dallas Burston were really helpful and supportive and the Butterfly Brothers are getting back to us.
We agreed an ActionPlan and will be making a lot of digital decisions if it becomes necessary to do so.

Monday 9th March
I think we had better make some contingency plans at the Board Meeting tomorrow. Don’t like the way this Covid 19 thing is looking. Need to write an Action Plan for the Federation and discuss the AFM which is getting VERY close……..

Sunday 8th March
Board meeting Tuesday…….
Agenda – yep
Minutes- yep
Budgets – yep
Flyers – yep
Correspondence -yep
AFM lists – done but might re-do them in a minute
AFM plans and risk assessments – more or less sort of…….. will be done before I go to bed!

Saturday 7th March
The AFM………
On Version 2 of the plans for the day – minute by minute to make sure we don’t forget anything! Last year we got up to version 5 so I’m not holding my breath that this is the finished article!

Thursday 5th March
What an absolutely brilliant day. Even though it poured with rain all day nothing could stop us enjoying the splendours of this fabulous Exhibition.

The Blue Badge Guides were fab- so knowledgeable and patient! Great driving in the downpour by the drivers from Johnsons and definitely the “ best fish and chips in London” for supper. Fab!

Wednesday 4th March
Nearly ready for King Tut!
Just a few last minute things to do ready for the coach trip tomorrow. 98 people are going so that’s two full coaches. Last minute calls to the Blue Badge Guides, Johnsons Coaches and the Trustees who are helping with all the organisation. Jeryl, Sue M and Sue G are assisting with coach leadership and Christine is our Emergency contact at home. Really looking forward to it!

Tuesday 3rd March
Creative and Leisure Activities Committees!
Super day today with all kinds of events being planned for our members across the county. Everything from Italian day to Archery !

My goodness me , the ladies on these sub-committees do work hard!

Monday 2nd March
Pep up your WI
Great evening at Leamington Baptist Church tonight It was really good to hear some tried and tested ideas for recruiting and retaining members. The idea of using real WIs and real members to tell their stories really worked !

Sunday 1st March
Pep up your Board of Trustees !
Spent today sorting the agenda for the Board meeting next Tuesday! Lots of last minute work to do on the Annual Meeting now as this is the last Board meeting before the big day!
Also trying to make sure I am all ready for Pep up your WI on Monday evening