Dear Pat and our Friends of Sandon WI,


We hope you have all had a very pleasant summer break and a gentle re-entry back to the WI year with the tea afternoon at the White House.  Fund raising is one of W.I’s main activities and is usually the key item when we arrange a few hours to get together and do interesting things.  We at Milson are having a coffee morning on the 26th, with fund raising in mind.


The Spring season is well on for us,  daffodils have been enjoyed and are over, we really wish cold winds and rain would get the message too, but we must be patient especially as the equinoctial gales, to be expected soon, must hold their sway for as long as it takes before moving on.  When we manage to secure a sunny day with no wind, it is delightful, and everyone feels the benefit.  We’ve had a few but like Oliver, we want some more.


I have mentioned to you Manawatu Federation’s National success with their scrapbook this year, after two years of being placed 3rd, then 2nd.  There are two or three pages from each Institute, and they’ve been assembled into the whole, another of Bev Williams’ craft abilities. A very heavy album, the pages record activities of Institutes throughout a year.


Our ‘sausage sizzle’ was a financial success,  200 tasty morsels were sold, and enjoyed in the 6 hours of sales,  three teams of four during the time, raising after expenses, $368.00.  The new bench seat was installed at the official opening of Kauri Medical Centre, mid September.  Other Institutes have contributed towards the bench, and we are pleased that it is placed in the entranceway which is glass all around, so it will be very pleasant for people waiting for transport, or just sitting in the sun under cover.


We bid farewell to another of our dear members recently,  Phyllis Reilly, who has been a long time member going back several decades, in P.N. and elsewhere, then to Milson.  When our Entertainment Group was up and running, she loved singing with our group.   Phyllis had been in care for a while but couldn’t regain her health.  

 We also were told some delightful news at the September meeting, our precious youngest member, Christine Mason, is to become a mother in January, you can imagine what a lovely thing that is for Milson.


September is Spring Show month and once again the seasonal blooms appeared, always wonderfully perfect considering the rough weather.  There were not many handcraft items in competition, perhaps some of the newer ideas on the schedule did not attract,  but popular entries in the two photography sections were a bridge, and sculpture, both in portrait format.  After many years of entry stewarding, my partner Dot Wood and I retired from that responsibility, and were able to attend the September meeting. The theme was ‘Aprons’; we were asked to bring our favourite one along and give its history, and there was a quiz on the subject.   Once again the show trophies went to the ladies who always work hard for the day and try to encourage others to enter.


As Pat has noted at times, we often have similarities occurring within our Institutes, now we are following in Sandon’s footsteps by having a member just like Eileen, Joyce McEwen too has been honoured with a civic award and trophy for her services to voluntary work at the hospital, to the Highland Dancing Assn and W.I.


 Ballentynes/WI recent fashion parade was very good with six WI members once more doing the dressing up and showing of suitable clothing for older women.  I thought the styles were particularly easy wear for us, and the colours really lovely.  In recent years Ballentynes have extended into shoes, also very attractive.  The forerunner to the main event was a parade of period dresses, all made by a clever young woman in P.N.  She started by designing an outfit for someone who was going to a Victorian (might have been Edwardian!)  dress up function,  and found  she had quite an interest, and an ability to make costuming.  She studied the subject, then read all she could on how to authentically sew and fasten the costumes.  Four Milson members, and two from other Institutes went to try on what was suitable for each of us, and could see that the ground floor of her house seemed to be made over to this absorbing hobby, costumes which date from the late 18th century to early 20th, and I saw a sewing machine set up in a room.  I was fitted with a crinoline, also wearing a bonnet with a double brim.  The dress was quite an impressive sight, but so awkward to wear with inner hoops, and the headwear with to-the –front-only vision.


This entertainment was followed by the Half-yearly Council meeting, last Monday, which Bev makes as brief as possible so there is more time to enjoy the following social time together. Two days later,  it was time again for Milson’s monthly meeting, and our speaker was a local man who told us about his trip to Morocco, also showing photos of this on a screen.  The tour had taken place several years ago, but probably the people of the countryside still depend on their in-ground wells for their water supply, and no electricity. 


All the news for this time, so will close with our best wishes for an enjoyable October meeting.


From all the members of Milson W.I.,

& Pauline