Virtual Book Club Meeting

Just a reminder for Market Harborough WI Book Club Members:

Capture

The Book Club Zoom Quiz Night is tomorrow evening!

Make sure to get your 5 questions ready!

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It’s all happening at the Allotment!

Mint Tyre Allotment May 2020Mint Tyre Allotment May 2020

 

The mint tyres in front of the shed at the allotment are not the only things taking off!

 

Following a concerted effort by the key Gardening Girls we now have a newly laid out plot with a marvellous variety of fruit and vegetables in various stages of development. All those hard winter planning meetings in the Farndon Fields Coffee Shop are paying off, even if we had to go slightly ‘off piste’ a, because of the current ‘situation’ and b, the weather, which to say the least has been just a bit cruel: After the wet winter tempting us into action with warm sunshine and then hitting the newly planted seedlings with late frosts, a fair amount of wind and absolutely no rain at all.  So things continue to evolve and we have made a note for next year to stifle impatience and ‘not to cast a clout until may is out’…

The green house nursery is now in full swing with tomatoes, cucumbers, chard and peppers all coming along nicely. We have a legume area, with runner, French and broad beans, peas and sweetcorn. Beetroot and parsnip are already planted. And this year the brassicas will be protected by the upcycled greenhouse staging that has made friends with some bamboo sticks and turned itself into a cage.

But the piece de resistance is the new pond area next to the well in the upper part of the plot. Thanks to some generous gifts from fellow WI members, the pond dug in April has now been surrounded with the first bits of planting and a garden arch – thank you so much, we really do appreciate it! And we have finally found an opportunity to upcycle the old garden gate we have been hoarding – it goes rather well with the arch and will provide much needed support for some plants. Let’s hope the wildlife will appreciate it and visit in numbers.

So despite the challenges this month has thrown at us, it has been good fun, we have learned more and for novice gardeners, we are not doing bad at all!!

Stay safe out there!

 

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Who says we can’t?

After their carefully planned program for the first half of this year had to be abandoned due to the Covid-19 lock down, the Market Harborough WI opted to go the technology route and hosted their first online monthly meeting yesterday.

Quiz-Time

After getting our ladies up to speed with Zoom accounts, access codes and mini training sessions by helpful fellow members, we spend an amusing quiz evening online. Our  entertaining quiz host James tested us on a variety of subjects including Geography, history and Food and Drink. Great fun with plenty of banter and lots of laughter! Congratulations to Bernie, who won by a mile – just a shame that we can’t have a virtual prize. Need to work on that….

The committee members have had some great feedback already, so we’ll work on a revised monthly program using technology – watch this space for further announcements!

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Virtual Book Club – now twice monthly!

The first virtual meeting of the Book Angels via Zoom worked a treat, so the group have decided to continue to hold meetings via Zoom. The next Virtual Book Club Meeting is booked for

Monday, 18th May @ 7.30 pm

Book: “The Dry” by Jane Harper

book club may 2020

The Book Angels are also planning a quiz evening on the 1st June where all Book Club members are asked to bring five literary questions to submit to the group.

Book Angel Members will have received an email with instructions on how to join, but if any other MHWI members would like to take part, please email marketharboroughwi@gmail.com for details.

If you don’t want to join the Book Angels just now, but are looking for reading inspiration to while away those hours at home, then here are a few ideas that may help:

Free Lending Library

https://www.leicestershire.gov.uk/leisure-and-community/libraries

The Leicestershire Library network offers a free on-line lending facility for e-books, audio books and newspapers as well as magazines on a whole range of hobbies and special interests. Use the link above to find the site, then click on ‘Digital Library Services’ and log in with your library card. If you do not have a card you can register on-line for free. The files can be downloaded to most digital devices. Books can usually be borrowed for 3 weeks, any magazine of newspaper publication will remain on your device until you delete it.

Project Gutenberg

https://www.gutenberg.org/

The Gutenberg Project has been digitising books that are out of copyright (currently up to about the mid-1920s) and the library now includes over 60.000 books. These can be downloaded free of charge for a variety of different e-readers or in PDF form.  They also offer books in a range of languages

Free Kindle Books on Amazon

http://www.amazon.co.uk

Yes – there are! Select the Kindle department from the drop down menu on the left of the search box, enter 0.00 and sort the list by ‘price low-high’. You can download these just like any other Kindle book. Alternatively, download the Kindle App onto your computer or tablet and you can read the books through there. Who knows – this may just lead you to discover a new favourite author!

Online Courses

http://freeonlinecourse.org.uk/

https://www.futurelearn.com/

There are a myriad of online courses available at the moment – and many of them are free. Check out these sites for offers and links to other providers.

And as always – if you have any other tips, tricks or good ideas we should post here, please email us at marketharboroughwi@gmail.com

Enjoy and stay safe!

 

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This Month’s Virtual Craft Club – Meet Mr Morris!

The original Craft Club program had a session on Embroidery planned for this spring. So in line with this, our Virtual Craft Club this month is all about the British Arts and Crafts Movement, textile design and it’s most famous proponent, William Morris.

Meet the Arts and Crafts Movement

The Arts and Crafts movement developed as a reaction against the perceived decline in the decorative arts in the late 19th century and flourished in Britain around 1880 to 1920. It advocated traditional craftsmanship and folk styles of decoration, but was also active in the causes of social and economic reform. Key proponents were the architects Augustus Pugin and John Ruskin as well as the designer William Morris.

There are a lot of resources online about William Morris and his fellow designers. Here is a selection of links that may lead you to further reading on the subject:

Introducing William Morris

William Morris and the V&A

William Morris and Wallpaper Design

Closer to home, the architect Ernest Gimson was influenced by Morris and the movement. One of his projects was the design of Stoneywell Cottage in Leicestershire.

Ernest Gimson and the Arts and Crafts Movement in Leicester

Stoneywell Cottage

If you’d rather watch some video clips, you could try these to get started:

V&A: William Morris

William Morris and the Arts and Crafts Movement

embroidery

Learn new Techniques (or old ones as the case may be)

We have picked a few online videos teaching embroidery stitches for you. Try making a sampler of a range of stitches so that we can come back to the subject once we meet again in person!

Embroidery Basics and Supplies

Embroidery Sampler Pattern

More Basic Stitches

Setting up a pattern

Or if you’d rather go all out William Morris, why not try your hand at Fabric Block Printing?

Fabric Printing using Potato

Fabric Printing with Wooden Blocks

We hope this will keep you busy for a while and look forward to seeing some of your work when we meet again!

Enjoy and stay safe!

 

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Meanwhile at the Allotment…

The last meeting of the allotment gang in February was spent happily planning the new planting at 41A Cricket Pitch View and hoping fervently that the temporary roof cover would hold during the expected second wave of winter storms.

20200423_153213

Little did we know then that we would not be able to get onto the plot for the next few months  while our attention would be focused on supermarket queuing, finding seven new ways to wash the curtains and generally getting used to life in lock down.

However, the fantastic weather we are having is bringing the whole allotment community to life again – with social distancing of course and without the general public having access to the site, but it’s all happening again thanks to Anne, who has been clearing the winter blues (and a lot of rubbish!) off the beds, tidying the verges, re-mulching the paths, laying the slabs for the upper terrace and fitting the missing glass into the greenhouse ready for things to come and the rest of us to join in again. Which we finally did this week and yes – you CAN dig and social distance at the same time!

Collage

The first load of runner beans are in the ground and so are the first peas. Winter leeks are sprouting even if the garlic seems to have gone into hiding. A single potato survivor is hanging in there, but the strawberry plants are doing well and the cherry tree has had some promising flowers – fingers crossed.

The allotment spirit is alive and well – and is even bringing the allotment community closer together with plot holders lending helping hands to get everyone going again. The only thing we are missing right now is the afternoon tea break on our benches – but hey, as the sign on the shed says: To plant a garden is to believe in the future and we are certainly doing that.

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