To talk to so many dedicated and enthusiastic Officers from our WIs across the county this week. Really appreciate your support.
Thursday 13th January
Goodbye and thank you
To our Federation Administrator Sarah, who has worked very hard for the Federation for many years- we will all miss you!
Tuesday 11th January
Board of Trustees
Lots of work and sorting out went on today. We are all taking on a share o the extra work for the next couple of months so we made lots po plans. Also approved some really interesting events for the future. The Serious Science lectures : Climate Change and Artefacts of Invention look really interesting. There’s also Willow Weaving, Applique and a coach trip coming soon!
Sunday 9th January
Lots of preparations and meetings next week. We are all trying to ensure that the Federation continues to run as well as it can. We have a Board meeting on Tuesday and the first run of consultations with WI officers on Zoom. There are 16 meetings in all over the next three weeks ….. wish us luck!
Thursday 6th January
Ready for the Board meeting?
Almost … lots of paperwork done today and lots of work with Sarah , trying to make sure we all know how to do things for the future. Fabulous sunset on a proper winter’s afternoon!
Tuesday 4th January
Our first day back and the Trustees are all trying to come to terms with the loss of Sarah , our Federation Administrator, who has taken a new full time position elsewhere. This will mean some extra work and a time of flux whilst we try to recruit a replacement
Monday 3rd January
Happy New Year
I do hope that you all had a good Christmas and would like to wish you all a very Happy New Year. Lets hope that 2022 finally brings the end of the pandemic and that life will gradually begin to return to “ normal”.
Dead chuffed with my fabulous new orchid- it’s a Singulo- just one enormous flower.
Thursday 16th December Season’s Greetings…..
Well, I think we have just about got everything done before Sarah finishes for a well earned Christmas break.
Thank you all for your support through some really challenging circumstances over the last year or so and here’s to much better times in 2022.
Wednesday 15th December Cake and Coffee…. It was my WI’s monthly Coffee Morning today and the cake went down that quickly I didn’t manage the get a photo of the whole one!
Tuesday 14th December
I wasn’t able to attend the Creative Activities and Public Affairs meetings today due to family stuff but I understand from Sue Myhill and Julia that they both went very well. In the interim we have been checking out the accounts for last year prior to getting them out to the WIs for consultation…… happy days!
Monday 13th December Well done, Dosthill WI Super effort with the Gingerbread Trail in Dosthill Lots of hand made and crafted scenes throughout! Super. It was our Polesworth Group Carol Service tonight at Baddesley – lovely opportunity to play guess who is behind the mask!
Sunday 12th December Had a day off today! Went to see my dad this afternoon and then attended the village Carol Service – carols by candlelight in an ancient church…….. magical (even if we did have to wear masks throughout)
Saturday 11th December What a sunrise…. You’ll be thinking I am taking part in Fiddler on the Roof but there was one heck of a sunrise this morning!!
Friday 10th December What a sunset! Just had to get the camera out tonight – fabulous light!
Thursday 9th December ACWW Had to do my annual reminder on social media to all our members and friends that we still collect used postage stamps to raise funds for ACWW.
Wednesday 8th December What a treat! The lovely Sarah Casey has made me a very special bauble for my Christmas Tree- one to treasure and put up every year!
Tuesday 7th December A fun packed day! A live Board meeting this morning where we discussed all kind of strategy work for the future- very difficult when everyone is wearing Christmas jumpers and deeley boppers! ( can we use your pic here please?)
Then it was off to the church hall at Budbrooke for the Thank you Tea Party for our Committee members, Judges and Independent Financial examiners. ( all of whom, like the Trustees are volunteers.) Great to see everyone.
Monday 6th December Decorations are up! The tree is up and I have decorated round the house! Really pleased with Cooper’s Christmas stocking…. Not as we intend to spoil him or anything!
Sunday 5th December OOOOO! It’s Sunday and it’s Board on Tuesday! Blog done? Yep
Papers for Board meeting done? Almost……
Cake made for the Thank You tea for all those who support the Federation (sub-committees, IFEs, Judges and more) Yep!
Happy Days ? Yep
Saturday 4th December Christmas nearly sorted then! Spent today labelling and wrapping various preserves I have made over the year- all being sold to raise funds for my favourite charity The Dalmatian rescue who kindly allowed us to adopt the lovely Cooper!
Friday 3rd December Hollyberry Eve and a long lost video….. After I posted my home-made Christmas decorations on social media I had several requests for the recipe. I managed to find the video I made last year! Hooray!
It was Hollyberry Eve tonight- our traditional festive fundraiser for our parish. Lots of people being very silly entertained us all royally! Great fun!
Thursday 2nd December Worcester Victorian Market What a lovely trip we had today- two coaches full of our members from all over the county. It was bright and sunny in Worcester- if a little brisk! Once it got dark the lights and ambience was delightful. Huge thanks to Trustee Veronica Chapman for organising it!
Wednesday 1st December Tree is up! Made my favourite tree decorations today. Had to stop ray from pinching all the blackcurrant boiled sweets though!
Tuesday 30th November Coercive Violence What an interesting and thought provoking talk on Zoom tonight by Dr Emma Katz. It wasn’t the most comfortable of subjects to listen to but I am jolly glad I did.
Monday 29th November Cyber Safety…. Great Zoom this afternoon. Really helpful to be reminded of what to look out for when you are on-line. Honestly there are some really awful fraudsters about!
Sunday 28th November When Life gives you Lemons…. ( or in this case SNOW!) Make lemon curd!
Saturday 27th November Well! That’s it. I am going to take up knitting! I was soooo very impressed with the hand knitted Liver spotted Dalmatian I had ordered through my favourite charity for ray for Christmas! I am thinking of taking up knitting Lots of comments on social media advising me to lie down in a darkened room! .
Friday 26th November 16 days of Action #nomoreviolenceagainstwomen. Very proud to be taking part in this campaign.
Really looking forward to hosting our Zoom on Tuesday with the renowned speaker DR Emma Katz talking about making sense of coercive control. Do join us!
Thursday 25th November Save our Honey bees… Delighted with the tree in St Marys Church this year. Complete with knitted bees and hives. Most impressive. Well done everyone.
Wednesday 24th November Will I ever take up knitting? Looking at this lovely little knitted bee I very much doubt it! .
Tuesday 23rd November OOOO! Live Meetings It was great to see all the members of the Leisure Activities Committee this morning. They have organised a really exciting programme for next year.
Then the Trustees met to discuss the pilot NFWI training for Trustees which led to a very interesting afternoon all round!
AND what a great evening Advisers Lynne and Anita had in Coleshill where they were overwhelmed by the enthusiasm shown for re-starting Coleshill WI,. Brilliant! .
Monday 22nd November Gosh Membership and Promotions have been busy…. Had a good meeting on Zoom tonight discussing all the Annual Meetings which had been attended all over the Federation by our Advisers. It was heartening to hear how many of our WIs are doing well and that they are recruiting new members! Brilliant.
Sunday 21st November Ready for next week?
Prepared for M&P on Monday night?
Prepared for Leisure Activities meeting on Tuesday?
Prepared for Trustee Training on Tuesday? Almost…….
Sorted ready for the Judges Meeting on Friday morning? Not yet but I will be……
Finished this Blog? Just about….. and the flowering cherry in the garden is hanging onto the most beautiful set of leaves I have ever seen!
Saturday 20th November My Handmade Christmas Workshop – Sarah had done a splendid welcome to Federation House and I gather that the attendees all had a brilliant time, making all sorts of Christmassy stuff
Well done to the Creative Activities Team for putting on such a lovely afternoon.
Friday 19th November
After such a lovely sunrise this morning I just had to take a day off WI stuff!
Thursday 18th November Trustee Training We are very pleased to have been asked to take part in the new Training for Federation Trustees which will be rolled out next year by NFWI for all Trustees. The Officers met tonight to discuss how we would present the training on Tuesday!
Wednesday 17th November Coffee Morning! My own WI at Newton Regis have a monthly Coffee Morning which coincides with the visiting Post office at the village Hall. My Coffee and Walnut cake soon disappeared!
Tuesday 16th November Members News letter Sarah and I spent quite a bit of time working on the monthly Newsletter for our members. We love the fact that well over 60% of our members receive and open their newsletter every month!
Monday 15th November Climate Change That was a very interesting session on Zoom tonight set up by our very own Public Affairs Committee. It was great to hear how the Council in South Warwickshire are planning to tackle climate change. It was also very good to see so many of our Warwickshire WI Climate Ambassadors there. One on my pet ambitions is to have a Climate Ambassador for every WI in the county!
Sunday 14th November Final Lest We Forget Moment Loved this picture of Cooper proudly wearing his poppy!
Saturday 13th November World Kindness Day I couldn’t resist re-posting my photo of our Sanitary wear collection for our sisters from Afghanistan, celebrating the generosity of our Warwickshire members!
Friday 12th November Look Out Everyone…. Christmas is a Coming! Pickled the very last of the shallots today!
Thursday 11th November What a fab Poetry Morning. Another Zooming successful Morning with members from all over the county joining us to discuss Poems related to our chosen topic The Seasons. Some lovely choices. The Team all stopped at 11.00 for the Act of Remembrance too . Another fantastic Lest We Forget moment. .
Wednesday 10th November Post Board Meeting Frenzy of activity. Its always the same after a Board Meeting. Sarah and I are in constant contact firming up all the decisions made and getting everything ready to go out on the Newsletter and onto the website.
Lovely Lest We Forget artwork courtesy of All saints Primary, Coalville.
Tuesday 9th November Lovely Board Meeting Today. I know it’s not the same on Zoom but we still managed to get loads of planning and organisation sorted today!
My Lest We Forget moment was from a visit to The Somme in 2018 when we found the grave of a soldier who had died without knowing that he had a daughter born three months after his death. We had bought the Family Bible on EBay and were fascinated by his story.
Monday 8th November There was a lot of Lest We Forget going on today! Quick Officers Meeting today to make sure we were all sorted for the Board Meeting tomorrow! My Lest we Forget picture today is Ray’s favourite piece of garden art
Sunday 7th November Lest we Forget. This year I am going to try to post pictures for Remembrance through the week. In 2014 and 15 we were fortunate to be able to take a number of our Warwickshire WI members to The Somme. Unforgettable times so it seems appropriate to post. Today my picture is of poppies near Fortrose in Scotland.
Friday 5th November All ready for the Board Meeting on Tuesday ? Almost, just need to double check a few things. Sue has got the finance paperwork ready and all the reports are done.
Thursday 4th November Another brilliant idea coming up! We had a brilliant social time at Newton Regis WI tonight, after our Annual Meeting.
Sue, our Treasurer invented a “Good, Better, Best” taste test. We had to try three different types of cheese, yoghurt and orange juice and discern by taste which was good, better or best. The results were fascinating, as the cost/ branding didn’t always reflect our views of which were the best! Fascinating stuff!
Wednesday 3rd November Brilliant Promotion for Warwickshire WIs Trustees Sue, Sue and Ruth went to the NEC today to set up our promotional stand at the NEC. I think you will agree that they did us all proud! Well done!
Tuesday 2nd November Agenda for Board Meeting next week Its always a busy time for me and Sarah when we are preparing for the next Board Meeting – I wrestle with the Agenda whilst Sarah gathers all the supporting papers together. Did you know that you are more than welcome to attend one of our meetings as an observer and find out first hand what we do at the Federation? Just let us know if you would like to come along!
Monday 1st November O&F Meeting As always, our Office and Finance Meeting today focussed on money coming in to the Federation and money going out! We are going to have to try to revise our electricity supply contract shortly…. Wish us luck!
Sunday 31st October COP26. Inspired by Sue Gill and the ladies of Stockton WI I managed to get a few No More Loopholes bracelets made (not by me…. my craft skills are legendary in their non-existence.) My niece was fortunate to be attending this weekend and she took them with her to hand out to some very delighted recipients!
Saturday 30th October Indian Block Printing I was so very pleased to hear that this course was going ahead. It’s so disappointing when we have to cancel because we haven’t got enough participants to break even. Well done, Trish, for sorting this workshop out. Enjoyed by all.
Friday 29th October Dads Birthday today…. He was 91 today so I made some special cakes for him and all his friends!
Wednesday 27th October What a splendid Centenary. Many congratulations to Whitnash WI on reaching their Centenary. Had a splendid afternoon tea with them all.
Tuesday 26th October Brilliant meetings…. It was lovely to have face-to-face meetings with the members of the Public Affairs and Creative Activities Committees today. Really enjoyed seeing everyone- seems like ages since we met AND of course, it really is!
Monday 25th October Let’s Do London… What a fabulous day out! Really enjoyed seeing the Tower of London after a lovely boat trip down the River. The Crown Jewels were just fabulous!
Sunday 24th October Got to get myself organised……. Sarah is away this week on a well- deserved holiday so I will be manning the phone and trying to answer all sorts of queries.
We also have a bit of a busy week……
Ready for London tomorrow? Sort of….
Ready for Public Affairs and Creative activities Committees on Tuesday? Nearly ……..
Ready for Whitnash WI Centenary Party on Wednesday? You bet I am!
Saturday 23rd October Annual National Council Meeting. Part Two. Really enjoyed seeing and listening to fellow Warwickshire member, Jeryl Stone today. It makes you feel very proud to have the National Treasurer as one of your County members.
Friday 22nd October Annual National Council Meeting. Every year the Chairs and Treasurers from every Federation meet up with the NFWI Trustees to discuss all kinds of matters WI. This year the meeting took place on Zoom -not quite the same as meeting in person but very interesting all the same. It was good to hear from our new National Chair, Ann Jones.
Wednesday 20th October Harry’s Tree You may well remember we lost our beloved Dalmatian, Harry earlier this year. Ray has had a special sign made to mark the spot where his ashes are scattered in the garden- under the pear tree where he always picked and ate every one, every year! Delighted with the sign.
Tuesday 19th October M&P Meeting today. It was great to see the Advisers at a face-to-face meeting today. It’s Annual Meetings season so they have all been very busy attending meetings all over the county!
Monday 18th October Speakers Showcase It was great to see over a hundred members of Warwickshire WIs tonight at the Baptist Church in Leamington, really felt like we were getting back towards normality at last.
Sunday 17th October Ready for Let’s Do London! Just bought tickets for the Tower of London! I have been promising my friend Olwen that we would go one day! And we soon will courtesy of our Federation Day out to London! HAPPY DAYS !
Saturday 16th October
I might just have to take up knitting!
As you know we adopted our Dalmatian Cooper earlier this year from the wonderful DAS Dalmatians- Dave and Sue rescue Dalmatians and give them a chance of a better life and we all try to help with fundraising. Last week I bought a knitted Cooper keyring! Hilarious!
Thursday 14th October Announcing Anton! Well, I have had lots of calls , texts and comments on social media today.! As soon as the members newsletter arrived in inboxes, I swear I could feel the waves of excitement crossing the county!
Wednesday 13th October A day in the garden. Even though its October the garden is till looking really well. Don’t you just love a dahlia?!
Tuesday 12th October Blimey! Busy day all round…. First of all we had the on-line Board meeting which was interesting and fun as usual. We have THE most exciting plan to unleash later in the week!
Then later in the afternoon I was lucky enough to be invited to attend the Centenary Celebration for Great Alne and Kinwarton WI. Super evening!
Monday 11th October. Newsletter for members sorted… I really like the monthly Newsletter idea and getting the latest news straight to members in boxes! Sarah does a lot of work to make sure all the links work properly but I think it’s a great idea.
Sunday 10th October Check it out! Green house cleaned ? Yep!
Paperwork for Board done and sorted? Yep!
Blog sorted? Yep!
Friday 8th October Autumn is definitely coming now…. Cleaned out the greenhouse today ready to give it a good scrub over the weekend. This little chap was most indignant that I disturbed his home when I moved the growbags out!
Thursday 7th October Lovely WI meeting It was great to see my friends at Newton Regis WI tonight. Super flower arranging demonstration by Vicky Vernon, all based around the ballet. Lovely (
Wednesday 6th October Can’t wait for it to get really cold! Cooper has the smartest and warmest new winter jacket I have ever seen!
Tuesday 5th October Something Really Special….. A letter from Buckingham Palace! Thanking us all for our letter of condolence to Her Majesty following the death of Prince Phillip.
Monday 4th October Getting ready for the Board Meeting next week. Got the Agenda sorted with the lovely Sarah today. It’s hard trying to keep three to four months in front of everyone else but we do our best! Office and Finance Meeting went well today Sue M kept us all in order! ( can you put in a suitable pic please?)
Sunday 3rdOctober Ready? Get set… GO! Blog done? Yep.
Board Agenda sorted? Nearly
Prep for Officers and Finance Meeting ? More or less!
Saturday 2nd October The sloes are about ready…. Just need to get a bottle of gin!
Friday 1st October RANT…. RANT…. RANT…. Had my lovely walk with Cooper spoilt this morning by the sight of yet another sofa dumped on the lanes. Why cant they just go to the tip??
Thursday 30th September Lynne was Brilliant What a fab talk on Zoom tonight by Lynne Stubbings about the highs and lows of being National Chair. Brilliant.
Wednesday 29th September Beginning to look a lot like autumn….. The bracken is turning colour and makes for a quite splendid display down the lanes.
Tuesday 28th September Leisure Activities meeting today. Unfortunately, I was unable to attend but I understand that the Leisure Activities Team an re dead keen and raring to go with plans for lots of future activities. Well done Veronica and team .
Monday 27th September What a Great Effort. It made me so proud to see the huge collection of toiletries and sanitary wear for our Afghan sisters when it was delivered today! Fabulous effort. Well done, everyone.
Saturday 25th September No WI as it was Ray’s birthday…. And for a special treat we got a new special collar for Cooper. He loves it!
Friday 24th September Great Inter Federation Working! Delighted to receive a whole load of goodies for our Afghan appeal from the members of Mile Oak WI in Staffordshire. Smashing!
Thursday 23rd September Great talk on Zoom tonight! Sue Robertson gave us a fascinating talk on the role of women in the magistracy over the last hundred years. Wish a few more people had come – they missed out on the most interesting and informative talk!
Tuesday 21st September Busy, Busy! Another carful of stuff for Afghan Appeal! Lots of work going on behind the scenes at the moment. Finalising the insurance and planning for the Annual Federation Meeting 2022. Watch this space!
Monday 20th September Great Big Green Week Had a great time with the ladies of Finham WI this morning. I was invited to be their speaker which was lovely AND I got to go out on a Litter Pick with them. Brilliant! AND they had collected loads of stuff for the Afghan appeal!
Interesting planning meeting with M&P tonight. Lots of Annual meetings coming up!
Sunday 19th September It’s been a bit of a week….. Apologies – my Dad isn’t very well at the moment so the WI has had to take a little bit of a back seat this week. I posted one of his favourite pictures of a field of poppies this week – he always says he thinks he is like the odd pink poppy in the middle!
Friday 17th September First car load of toiletries safely delivered … What a great feeling to deliver a car packed to the gunnels with toiletries and sanitary wear for the Afghan Refugees. Huge thanks to all my local WIs and friends for such a great contribution!
Thursday 16th September The raspberries are fabulous this year.. I have been picking Autumn Raspberries by the colander and freezing them so that I can make jam later!
Tuesday 14th September Great Board meeting today. We got loads done. Even set a date for the 2022 Annual federation Meeting – put it in your diary now. 5th July 2022. Happy days
Sunday 12th September Ready???? Sorted for Tuesdays Board meeting? Yep
Rung your Link WIs – almost all a couple weren’t around so will have to try tomorrow.
Completed Blog/ nearly
Sorted Zoom invites out ???? aaaaaargh! Not yet!
Saturday 11th September Stunning advert for the WI and our Federation. Well done to the ladies from Nuneaton acorns WI who did such a fabulous job of promoting the WI on tv this morning. You made us all very proud !
Friday 10th September And now for the Crab Apples……… What a wonderful colour my Crab apple Jelly is. Very proud of it!
Think we have our future plans sorted after we had an Office and Finance Meeting. Think we are almost ready for the Board meeting next Tuesday too. Fingers crossed that I haven’t forgotten something really major.
Wednesday 8th September Greengage Heaven OOOO! Someone gave me some lovely greengages today . they make the very best jam!!
Also getting quite excited about the Sewing Street programme on Saturday which will feature members of Nuneaton Acorns WI!
Tuesday 7th September Planning for the next Board Meeting Proper…. It’s the normal monthly Board Meeting next week so Sarah and I have been working on planning and the agenda to ensure we don’t miss anything important! It was lovely to meet up with various sub-committee members on Zoom this morning to catch up about the changes to our Insurance cover.
Monday 6th September Board Meeting We had to have an extra Board meeting early this morning to make a sad decision about the Lunch with Rev Richard Coles. We had been unable to find a venue big enough to provide Lunch on October 5th so sadly we have had to postpone and refund almost two hundred people. Especial thanks to Sue Myhill, our trusty Treasurer and Sarah for processing all this.
Sunday 5th September Been jamming all day Blow me down if the damsons aren’t ready at the same time as the plums this year! Calling a Trustees meeting for the morning as the Rev Richard Coles situation isn’t looking too positive.
Friday 3rd September NO news yet Spent almost all day on the phone trying to sort a venue for 170 people with a two course lunch. This isn’t looking too easy. Meanwhile Ray is as pleased a punch with our enormous dinner plate dahlias!
Thursday 2nd September Well, let that be a lesson to me! Late last night the text messages started flooding in about the shock closure of Dunchurch Park Hotel. There I was, with my feet up enjoying a glass of sparkling water as you do…… panic…. panic…… need a new venue for Rev Richard Coles on October 5th !
Anyway, we all set about trying to find somewhere (along with all those other very disappointed people) Will let you know how we get on.
Meanwhile tonight I had the pleasure of talking to the members of Bishops Tachbrook WI on Zoom We had a great laugh – made me forget my woes for an hour or so!
Wednesday 1st September Well, September is here…. And the garden is looking great. I’m picking raspberries and plums every day and the WI is taking a little bit of a back seat ….. and the flowers are absolutely fabulous
Monday 30th August Thank You! What a beautiful Thank You card from the ladies of Grendon WI
Sunday 29th August A Strange co-incidence ….. I had a call on Friday asking if a group of walkers could stop off at the village church for a loo break today. I said yes but they would have to come here as the church doesn’t have any facilities. It turned out that they are a group of Young Christians walking in a relay from G7 in Cornwall to COP 26 in Glasgow (in November) They were lovely and were absolutely thrilled to be given the No More Loopholes bracelets . How strange it is when life conspires to make everything come together!
Saturday 28th August Cooper sets a record! Most of you know about Cooper, our rescue Dalmatian. We have been selling jam and pickle from a box on the end of the drive to raise funds for the Rescue. We made £102 .
Dead chuffed with that.
Friday 27th August No More Loopholes! This afternoon I was delighted to welcome some of our Public Affairs Committee to my garden. We have been threatening to do this for ages! The lovely Sue Gill (Stockton WI) brought some wonderful No More Loopholes bracelets – they are to remind people to lobby for COP26 in November to push for all governments to close the loopholes with regard to our commitment to climate change.
Thursday 26th August This is what best friends are for……. In between doing sixteen calls on Zoom to discuss matters regarding with Insurance and worrying about my Dad, there has been a little spot of sheer joy. My best friend in Cornwall sent me the most lovely flowers
Wednesday 25th August Letters to Loved Ones… My dad has been in hospital for a few days now and its been a very worrying time as there is no visiting and the Wards are very busy so difficult to get in touch by phone. Thank goodness for the Letters to Loved Ones Service which enables you to ring and leave a message or email a letter in , wonderful volunteers deliver the messages and can even arrange for a telephone call to be facilitated. Do tell everyone about this wonderful service I swear it has saved my sanity this week.
Tuesday 24th August Busy day for Committees today. Spent most of the day on Zoom – lovely to see members of both the Public Affairs and Creative Activities Committees – we had a great time planning for the future! Well done, ladies.
Monday 23rd August More Tea, Cake, Coffee and Chat This afternoon saw members of Mancetter, Kingsbury and Grendon WIs descend on the garden for a good old catch up! We had a lovely afternoon chatting in the sunshine!
Sunday 22nd August Summer in Seckington…… Made my favourite jam today. Everything home grown except the sugar!
Saturday 21st August Got my Certificate! Yeah! As it was wet and horrible, I thought I would just renew my Food Safely and Hygiene Certificate. I have been going to do it for weeks. Of course, the beauty of doing it on-line is that you can just get on with it whenever you please! Dead pleased to have passed!
Friday 20th August Tea, Cake, Coffee and Chat This afternoon saw members of Austrey, Warton and Dosthill WIs visiting for a good old catch up in the garden. They are some of our Polesworth Group and we usually have one great big get together in the summer- this year we are split into two because of the Pandemic and trying to keep numbers down. I have to report that a good time was had by all!
Thursday 19th August Great to see…. So many members of my very own WI this afternoon – we usually have a Newton Regis WI Afternoon Tea in the garden and it went really well. Everyone is genuinely delighted to see all their friends. Smashing!
Wednesday 18th August Better tidy up the garden then! Having some WI visitors over the next few days so I am very pleased with my begonias- perhaps they won’t notice all the weeds!!
Tuesday 17th August Great to see….. So many friendly faces on our three Insurance Zooms today. Our WI officers work really hard for the benefit of their members and communities. It was lovely to see them all and have a catch up. I am very grateful to Sue Myhill and Sue Postlethwaite for all their hard work and support with this.
Monday 16th August It might have been on Zoom but we still got a lot done! It was great to welcome Marina Kitchen (Nuneaton Acorns WI) to our M&P meeting tonight. We worked through quite a lot of planning ready for when all of our WIs resume their monthly meetings in September!
Sunday 15th August Right then……. Ready for M&P on Monday .
Ready for the first six Insurance meetings.
Cake made for WI visits at the end of the week.
Refilled the Cooper Sales Box.
All done. Going for a nice walk with Cooper now……. Not that the sheep were over impressed!!
Friday 13th August Drinks and Desserts! Had a splendid evening with Hampton Lucy and Charlecote WI tonight. Super to see everyone and very impressed to watch the President, the lovely Jane Whyatt being presented with a Certificate of Appreciation!
Thursday 12th August Insurance and Hollyhocks…. The Officers and I have been working behind the scenes on the Federation Insurance for several weeks now. We finished planning our presentations to WI officers. OOOOO 16 meetings in the next fortnight! Can’t wait! Thank goodness for the beautiful hollyhocks around the garden! Watching the bees keeps me sane!
Wednesday 11th August Courgette and Chilli Pickle Day. Well, I had to do something with all those pesky courgettes which have definitely grown overnight!
Tuesday 10th August Can’t stop smiling! How lovely it was to see all the Trustees for a LIVE Board meeting this morning. We got loads done and then went off for a socially distanced pub lunch! Superb!
Then what a treat I went just over the border into Leicestershire to talk to Witherley WI tonight. Nattered on about my book AND I met Melanie , who I haven’t seen for about thirty years!!! Her Mum and mine were great friends. It was BRILLIANT to have a catch up!
Monday 9th August If there is one thing we WI members are good at…… It’s fundraising! I have decided to sell some preserves in a box on the end of my drive ( again!) to raise money to help feed the thirty rescued dalmatians currently in care at the home where we had the lovely Cooper from.
Sunday 8th August Ready Steady Go! Its our first LIVE Board meeting on Tuesday since I don’t know when! Just got to check all the paperwork and make sure I am all ready! Happy days! It will be lovely to see everyone! Had a lovely surprise this morning when some lovely flowers were delivered from the Ladies of Shrewley WI, as a thank you for stepping in as Speaker on Thursday
Saturday 7th August I’m in a right pickle! Found loads of gherkins under all the foliage in the garden today so am having a day off WI stuff and setting about pickling!
Friday 6th August Cooper’s cushion. Sue Myhill is an out and out genius! No doubt about it. She has made me the most fantastic cushion featuring a picture of Cooper, our rescued Dalmatian. I am absolutely awestruck at her skills!
Thursday 5th August An unexpected turn at the Shrewley WI Lunch It was lovely to see almost all of the members of Shrewley WI today at their Summer Lunch.
I was saddened to hear that Kath Ryan (AKA The Cake lady) has been really unwell and she was unable to come along to speak. So after a truly splendid lunch I tried to fill the gap by rabbiting on about my book.
Think they enjoyed it!
Wednesday 4th August Paperwork and Polesworth Abbey… Quite a lot of paperwork got done today as it is Board of Trustees next week! Have just had an absolutely splendid evening out with members of my own WI, Newton Regis. We had a tour of Polesworth Abbey and Gardens, which were fabulous in the evening sunshine. Really enjoyed the Fish and Chip Supper and a good old natter too!
Tuesday 3rd August
Spent the day recovering quietly and thanking everyone who had helped us with yesterday…. Oooh, and talking to Wendy from Johnsons about the possibility of a Day Out in London!
Monday 2nd August Wonderful Windsor! What a fantastic day out we all had! Nine coaches full of members and friends who were simply delighted to be together! It was lovely to receive a personal welcome from John Johnson upon our arrival and everyone had a great time doing their own thing. Windsor Castle, shopping, boat trips, walking tours – you name it someone did it! My thanks to all the Coach leaders and their Deputies who helped to mange the day so well and especial thanks to Jan Wade , who manned the emergency phones for us , just in case!
Sunday 1st August Looking forward to tomorrow Got all the coach lists sorted (well, I jolly well hope so) and packed my bag ready.
I am ready for a GRAND DAY OUT!!
It was a no WI day today as it was our Wedding Anniversary! Well, it was until the phone calls about changes to Windsor started coming in!
Friday 30th July Windsor….. all change please. We are looking forward to Monday but it’s proving a bit of a headache as people keep getting “pinged”
Have had to do quite a bit of juggling with the Coach leaders and such as changes came in. Then DISASTER struck – the lovely Sue Myhill has got Shingles. Can’t be a Coach leader but she says she can still manage the treasurer’s job … WHEW!!
Wednesday 28th July The new Warwickshire WIs Book Club Met online tonight and a good time was had by all. The group is going to meet bi-monthly and have some very exciting plans afoot.! Why not join them next time? . The next meeting is on Tuesday 28th Sept at 7.30pm and the first book is “The Other Bennett Sister” by Janice Hadlow. All you need to do is email Sarah and she will send you the link
Tuesday 27th July Officers Meeting and then Excitement at LA! The Officers had a quick meeting today to discuss various issues and queries which are coming in as the WIs resume live meetings.
The Leisure Activities Committee was full of exciting plans for the future and we are all looking forward to some great live like the Treasurer Hunt in Southam (6th) and the Fitness Day planned for Sept (8th).
Have a look at the What’s On page to see everything we have on offer for you
Monday 26th July Barford Group Picnic What a lovely time we all had in the sunshine at Norton Lindsey earlier today.
All of the WIs in the Barford Group were present and I was particularly please to receive a certificate of appreciation from the Group.
Glynis and I also went to Johnson’s en-route to check out that everything is in place for next Monday and the big Windsor Trip.
Sunday 25th July Another fun packed week beckons…… Ready for the Barford Group Picnic on Monday? Yep.
Ready for the Finalise the details for Windsor meeting with Johnsons? Yep
Is the Office phone transferred over to me as Sarah has a couple of days holiday? Yep
Ready for the Office and Finance Meeting? Yep
Ready for the Leisure Activities meeting? Yep
Happy days all round then!
Saturday 24th July Roses, roses, roses. Happy to spend today on the allotment with my dad, he has grown some fabulous roses this year AND they were only £3 a bush off the market a couple of years ago so we are doubly blessed!
Friday 23rd July Lunch with the Public Affairs Committee What a great idea this was…. masterminded by Sheila King we met up for lunch and a jolly good catch up. It was so lovely to be able to see and hear everyone without resorting to the usual Zoom etiquette. You know, “I can see you but I can’t hear you” scenario!
Thursday 22nd July What a lovely Afternoon…. I was delighted to be invited to a Tea party with Bulkington WI this afternoon. The members had worked very hard to provide a splendid array of cakes and tea!
It was great to see everyone enjoying themselves. I was also very touched to be invited to open the Community Garden which the WI has developed- a beautiful area, complete with our Warwickshire Centenary Oak Tree which is growing very nicely! (
Wednesday 21st July Its just too hot! I just wanted to lie in the stream in our garden today and try to cool off!
Sarah, Glynis and I have met (on Zoom, of course) to finalise the last details for Windsor. Looks like some 300 members and friends are talking part. Brilliant news!
Tuesday 20th July Happy days! The tomatoes are ripening in the greenhouse and the M&P meeting today covered a lot of ground! Pleased to hear that we have kept most of our members which is really good news!
Monday 19th July Fused Glass and Blackcurrants! I couldn’t do the Fused Glass Zoom tonight as I was speaking to a WI elsewhere in England on Zoom. Sue Myhill reckons it was absolutely brilliant! I was picking blackcurrants all day (well, it felt like that although I did have a couple of Zoom meetings in between). Lots of questions and chasing up about the Windsor trip now. Only two weeks to go!
Sun 18th July Had a day off WI stuff today And raised some money for the Dalmatian sanctuary we had Cooper from by doing a Car Boot sale. Made £82 out of a few bits we no longer needed or wanted!
Saturday 17th July Insurance, meetings prep and Runner beans! Trying to get ready for next week early! Got some questions to run past the Insurers on Monday, prep for Windsor meeting and M&P on Tuesday not to mention crossing my fingers that the Stand Up Paddle boarding went off ok ( which it did!)
Meanwhile it was another beautiful day! The Runner beans are looking fabulous! ( pic on insta)
Friday 16th July Scam emailer! Had a very interesting day today. Someone had scammed my email and had contacted the trustees and some WI friends asking for urgent help! Although a total pain I was very touched by the number of people who got in touch to check I was ok!
Thursday 15th July Look Out Windsor! Great meeting with Sarah and Glyn this morning to discuss and sort plans for the Grand day Out on August 2nd. We have over 250 participants now and the closing date has been extended to 22nd July. So do come and bring your friends. Full details on our website. I must admit to getting a bit excited when I booked my Windsor Castle ticket on-line earlier!
Wednesday 14th July Gosh, its warming up! Picked 12 pounds of blackcurrants this afternoon but decided that discretion was the better part of valour and froze them for later. I couldn’t face boiling jam when I was already boiled! Ox -eye daisies are particularly good this year.
Tuesday 13th July Great Board Meeting Really busy Board meeting today as we began the process of approving a range of live events for the next few months. Delighted to report that the great majority of Warwickshire members have renewed their membership and we are looking forwards to a great year!
Monday 12th July Make and Bake Heaven . Sue Myhill did the sewing and I made the puddings. It was lovely to have a good old chat with lots of our members this afternoon. I was able to use fruit from the garden to make Cranachan and Chocolate surprises
Sunday 11th July Ready or not! … Picked gooseberries? Yep
Ready for Office and Finance meeting in the morning? Yep
Watched the Wimbledon Final? Yep
Done the WI Blog well, nearly…….
Ready for The Makes and Bakes Demo ? …. Sort of
Ready for Trustees on Tuesday? Well, I have sent out the Zoom invite!
Ready for the England v Italy Final? You bet
Saturday 10th July The turning of the year…… When I walked Cooper early this morning it was a salutioryn reminder that the year is rolling on – the wheat is turning colour and the strawberries are ripening in a right old rush. Whilst making the strawberry jam I made a plan for my summer cooking demo on Monday afternoon! Nothing like a bit of multi- tasking!
Friday 9th July Look Out Windsor….. Had a great catch up with Wendy from Johnsons today about our Day Out. She is sooooo very enthusiastic- it’s bound to be a success!
Thursday 8th July Comic Verse! What an enjoyable morning we had with the Poetry Group on-line. Jane Waters did a sterling job of keeping us all organised and we had such a lovely tome rehearsing all those lovely comic favourites! Here’s my contribution!
Wednesday 7th July Board of Trustees next week….. Spent a couple of hours sorting out the agenda and paperwork ready for Board next Tuesday. It’s a much busier agenda now that we are getting back to organising live events!
Ooooo! Blimey, then Sue Myhill rang me to discuss what we are doing on Zoom next Monday afternoon when we do our FREE Makes and Bakes session!
Blimey, better get organised pronto!
Tuesday 6th July Out in the midday sun! When I saw a blackbird with a string of redcurrants hopping across the lawn, I realised that I had been a bit complacent about the fruit! Three colanders full of redcurrants later I thought I had better get the jelly bag and stand out of storage
Once I had set the jelly to drip overnight it was time for a quick Zoom meeting with two of our newer Trustees
We were discussing our plans for the Grand day Out to Windsor on August 2nd. We now have over 200 members going! And Johnsons are happy to extend the closing date so do sign up as soon as you can if you would like to go!
Monday 5th July Back to normal….. Lots if WI bits and pieces today. First of all, a catch up with Sarah in the Office and then with Sue, our Federation Treasurer. Now it feels like I have never been away. It was lovely to receive several invitations from WIs to catch up with them as they begin to plan for their first live meetings- many of them outdoors!
Then what an interesting Zoom we had with author Graham Sloper who kept us well entertained with his stories and advice on writing. The hour just flew by!
Sunday 4th July Back home and Thank You Sunday It’s lovely to be away and lovely to be home. Just getting ready for a busy WI week with quite a few meetings and Zooms. Had some really good responses to my social media posts on Thank You Sunday where I thanked all our Trustees, Sub- Committee members and everyone across the county who keep our WIs going!
Friday 25th June- Saturday 3rd July What a wonderful week away….. North East Scotland was beautiful in the sun, and we had a lovely break.
Wednesday 23rd June
Flower Power Competition…. Sarah has come up with another super competition and I couldn’t resist posting my best Flour arrangement picture- I know it won’t win but it always gives everyone a jolly good laugh!
Tuesday 22nd June Up and Running….. Lovely to hear our sub committees enthusing as they organised a range of live events for members for later in the year! Brilliant.
Monday 21st June Hearing Dogs Zoom What an absolutely great zoom tonight. John McGinn , the speaker was tremendous. Happy, enthusiastic and informative….. mind you, the demonstrations from Jimmy definitely stole the show! Highly recommended.
Sunday 20th June Father’s Day Special. My dear old Dad absolutely loves rhubarb so I had to make him a great big Rhubarb Crumble cake for his special day!
Friday 18th June Look out Windsor ! The lovely Sarah tells me that bookings are starting to come in for Windsor on August 2nd.
I think there’s a genuine feeling of optimism now so lets all cross our fingers for another Grand Day Out!
Thursday 17th June Got to get ready! Public Affairs and Creative Activities meetings on Tuesday. I think they will both be busy meetings as hopefully we will be getting ready to start live events. Happy days !
Big gardening week this week…… As we are going away to Scotland and need to get things done before we go.
The Angelica is looking particularly fine this year!
Tuesday 15th June No meeting Tuesday! Seemed very strange today, not having a WI meeting but it happens sometimes. Spent a very happy morning in my greenhouse, nurturing the cucumbers and melons. Happy days
Monday 14th June Bees in My Bonnet Well, we had a few bees buzzing around outside the outside toilet last week. Ooh bumble bees I said to myself. That’s nice…… by this morning there were hundreds. Yep, red tailed bumble bees everywhere. I rang a very nice man from Wishaw, who came and had a look- he confirmed that they were indeed Red tails! And multiplying rapidly as they really like nesting in roof insulation!! The beekeeper collected them all up (over 600 bees) and took them to a nice new home near Wishaw. He said that they would be a great colony for pollinating locally so all’s well that ends well.
Saturday 12th June Just enjoying the day… Not a WI day today but somehow everything comes back to the WI doesn’t it? Walked Cooper down the lanes this morning, the wild honeysuckle was absolutely alive with bees and I must say that walking in a honeysuckle breeze is a matchless experience. Picked up some litter while we were at it and later helped Dad at the allotment (no pesticides allowed here!) and took our own bags to the farm shop for some veg! I’m sure that there’s a WI Resolution behind almost every action we take these days!
Friday 11th June Chat with the Chair How lovely to chat with members across the county on Zoom this afternoon…. It seems like we have all made a new group of friends over lockdown. As Ray says “How very WI is that!?”
Thursday 10th June More Jane Austen.. What an interesting and informative talk we had tonight on Zoom. David Richardson from the Jane Austen society returned to talk to us about Pride and Prejudice. Fascinating insight. Many thanks to Trustee Fiona Riley for organising this for us to enjoy.
Great news! Jeryl Stone, former Warwickshire Trustee and member of Hampton Lucy and Charlecote WI has been voted in as National Treasurer!. Congratulations, Jeryl. We all know you will do a fabulous job.
Tuesday 8th June What a triumph! The National Annual Meeting was. Three top notch speakers and Lynne did us all proud in her final speeches! All of the comments on social media demonstrated how much her work as NFWI Chair has been valued right across the country. Well done , Lynne. A great advert for everything which is good about our organisation.
Monday 7th June What an interesting talk… The talk on Hearing Loss by RNID was absolutely super. It was particularly informative for those people lucky enough to have good hearing. The speaker communicated completely by signing and his words were translated for us by an interpreter. We all had several opportunities to try to lip read and this really reinforced the difficulties people with hearing loss encounter all of the time. I would really recommend this talk to all of our WIs.
Sunday 6th June Ready for next week? No Warwickshire meetings as it’s the National Annual meeting on Tuesday! Lots of Zooms though RNID on Monday, more Jane Austen on Thursday and Chat with the Chair on Friday!
Friday 4th June Final Day of Open gardens Had a grand count up tonight and we made a whopping £750! Happy days!
Thursday 3rd June Looking forward to Tuesday Have received all the paperwork and instructions for the Annual Meeting on Tuesday. It should be very interesting. There are some great speakers and of course, the meeting will be led by our very own Lynne Stubbings.
Wednesday 2nd June Hot or what? Still having visitors to my Open Garden – Cooper (our new rescue Dalmatian) thinks all the visitors have just come to see him! Here he is at the end of the day- exhausted with all that tail wagging!
Tuesday 1st June No chance of being Bored at a Board Meeting! Well, it might have been on Zoom but we had a very productive meeting today – lots of planning for future events and getting ourselves organised! We have several larger events in the pipeline including a lunch with Rev Richard Coles, whose book The Madness of Grief is a best seller!
Then in the evening I zoomed off to talk to the lovely ladies at Henley WI and had a great chat!
Monday 31st May Bank Holiday in the sunshine. Couldn’t have picked a better few days to open our garden to visitors. Delighted to have a visit from three week old Ava today!
It was also lovely to be supported by several Board members who trekked up “to the north” to see us! And a Trustee from West Midlands Federation – we had a right old WI afternoon today!!
Sunday 30th May When life gives you lemons…. Ran out of Lemon Curd so decided to knock up another batch this morning. Dispatched ray to the local Co-op , where he bought eight lemons and was asked just how much gin we have at our house by the somewhat bemused assistant!
Think I am just about ready for the Board meeting on Tuesday…. Feels very strange to be doing this meeting so early. But needs must!
Saturday 29th May Allotments and the WI… How lovely to see some members of Henley WI this afternoon, they drove up after seeing the open garden idea on social media …. We had a great time swapping gardening tips! Can’t wait to visit their allotment! Its such a brilliant idea.
Friday 28th May More WI visitors today – lovely to have a catch up with old friends!
Also very, very impressed with the number of our individual members who are reading the monthly emails we are sending out Great news!
Thursday 27th May First day of opening the garden today. Its going to be lovely to see friends old and new and have time to chat to them individually over the next few days.
Some of our first visitors were Sue Myhill and her husband. We managed NOT to talk about the WI for the first four minutes….which I reckon is a real record!
Wednesday 26th May What an absolutely brilliant talk on Zoom tonight…. Richard Rickitts, Bee keeper extra-ordinaire. He was truly inspirational. My favourite quote (which I keep telling everyone) was “ A tree is like a meadow in the sky for the bees!”
Tuesday 25th May Sub- Committee Day How lovely to be with the Leisure Activities team on Zoom today and to discuss and plan a range of live events for the future. Everyone was really keen and enthusiastic to ‘get things going!’ So watch this space!
Sunday 23rd May Ready for next week? Yes, just sorted out all the paperwork for the Leisure Activities and M&P meetings on Tuesday. Finished my Blog as well. Really looking forward to the Gardening for Bees talk on Zoom on Wednesday night. Hope to see you there!
Friday 21st May What weather…… Got completely rained off today so I made blackcurrant jam with the last of the frozen blackcurrants.
Made a start on the Agenda for the next Board meeting, as it’s a week earlier than usual – on June 1st instead of the 8th as we clashed with the big National WI Annual Meeting. Hope you have all got your tickets – it promises to be a very good one!
Thursday 20th May National Bee Day and some great news! I’m a Public Affairs person at heart so couldn’t resist posting my fave Bee photo today for World Bee day.
Absolutely delighted to see that the Leamington Courier featured Julie Thomas for her work with community groups and charities makes me very proud to work with people like Julie.
Wednesday 19th May Still gardening like mad… The weather isn’t the best at the moment but I do want the garden to look something like later next week when we open for visitors. I just love the spring garden.
Tuesday 18th May Thank you Sarah! For all your hard work in preparing the Newsletter to email to our members direct and a separate version for those not on email. Fantastic effort.
Monday 17th May Officers Meeting It was lovely to have an Officer’s Chat on Zoom this morning. We needed to discuss the outline parameters for moving back to large live events. We have two on the horizon –
Windsor on August 2nd
The Rev Richard Coles on 5th October.
Lots to think about to make sure that we are Covid secure and sound!
Sunday 16th May Not a WI weekend! Been busy digging and planting out as we are opening the garden in a couple of weeks time to raise funds for the village church – not one great big day like we usually do but open over a week. Going to be an interesting time. Made some cake ready today though!
Friday 14th May What a treat! Had a lovely basket of flowers from Grendon WI as a thank you for Wednesday night. Unexpected but a delightful surprise!
Thursday 13th May Good Old Zoom! What a splendid time I had this morning, on-line with the Poetry Group! The theme of the meeting was friendship and the members had found (or written) a fabulous variety of poems around the subject! Brilliant! Then tonight I Zoomed off to Tredington and Blackwell WI to tell them about my adventures. It was great to see them all and we had a great chat!
Wednesday 12th May Gardening for Health – our Zoom tonight was well received I reckon I should be reasonably healthy the amount of gardening I do! I couldn’t attend as I was talking to the members of Grendon WI about my adventures as a headteacher. It was lovely to see them and have a chat about all things WI!
Tuesday 11th May Board today and we are revving up….. For the future, planning loads of (hopefully) live events. Split up into teams to share out the workload. Can’t wait! And the spuds are up in the garden! Mind you so are the weeds!
Monday 10th May To Sew or not to Sew What an interesting time Mark Francis had as a competitor on The Great British Sewing Bee! Everyone really enjoyed his talk on Zoom tonight! Great fun
Sunday 9th May Just completed my usual WI Sunday jobs! Ready for the Board meeting on Tuesday? Nearly…….
Is this Blog sorted? Just about
Ready for Poetry Morning on Thursday? Absolutely!
Ready to talk to a couple of WIs this week? Yep, cant wait!
Saturday 8th May Rain, rain, go away! Made some Sourdough bread this morning and spent the afternoon working on various documents ready for the Board meeting on Tuesday. Thought I might as well use the time on indoor jobs and hope for better weather tomorrow!
Friday 7th May Federation Fit for the Future As you know we have been doing some serious thinking about the future of the Federation. My little sub-group, Structure, met with Sue Myhill’s Finance group to pool our ideas this afternoon. We had all decided that you can’t really talk about either in isolation. It was a really interesting meeting and I think we are beginning to make some serious headway. Lots to think about though! Meanwhile my ancient Azealea (the aptly named Sheet of Flame) is coming into full bloom. Isn’t it just marvellous?
Thursday 6th May A bit of a WI just for me sort of day!
Lots of digging and weeding then Ray said he fancied an Eccles Cake at mid-morning coffee time. Only a WI member would turn round and make some rather than nip to Sainsburys!
It was my own WI Meeting tonight and we had a fascinating talk from dairy farmer Jane Barnes, producer of milk for Stilton cheese. It was really interesting and informative. Also absolutely great to see all my WI friends.
Wednesday 5th May Agenda… publishing… and tomatoes! Spent a while double checking my agenda for the Board meeting next Tuesday morning. Then off down the greenhouse for a bit of tender love and care for my tomato plants. I was completely made up to find the first one in flower!
Then back to Zooming, as we had a great talk from David Roberts of Hornet Books, full of hints and tips about how to publish and promote your works! Lots of aspiring Warwickshire Federation authors present who really appreciated the talk!
Tuesday 4th May Sunshine and rain…. Still can’t get over those fabulous rainbows last night
Dead chuffed at the launch of the Grand day out to Windsor on August 2nd. As you know I have organised the last couple of GDOs and I am absolutely delighted that this time I have a team to help with the planning – three of our newest trustees, Glyn, Trish and Anita will be doing a great deal of the organisation. Happy days.
Monday 3rd May What vile weather! Ray made me laugh this morning. I asked him what he thought we should do as the weather was so vile (I was thinking we could tidy out the garage or something useful) when he said….. “Well, I expect you’ll be making a Nine Egg Victoria Sandwich ready for the Open Garden…… what a great idea! Happy days.
Saturday 1st May Greenhouse time…. Potted up lots of different seeds and plants today. Including Gherkins – I have a fancy for pickling them in the autumn!