Earlier this summer, Jill Collinge gave a fascinating talk entitled “The Origin of Sayings – I didn’t know that!”. Fiona Thompson, MHWI committee member attended, and has the following to say:
Jill gave a very interesting and fact-filled talk all about the origin of sayings. Here are a few of the highlights:
BY HOOK OR BY CROOK
This old saying probably comes from a Medieval law which stated that peasants could use branches of trees for fire wood if they could reach them with their shepherds crook or their billhook.
The expression to eat humble pie was once to eat umble pie. The umbles were the intestines or less appetizing parts of an animal and servants and other lower class people ate them. So if a deer was killed the rich ate venison and those of low status ate umble pie. In time it became corrupted to eat humble pie and came to mean to debase yourself or act with humility.
MAD AS A HATTER
This phrase comes from the fact that in the 18th and 19th centuries hat makers treated hats with mercury. Inhaling mercury vapor could cause mental illness.
WEAR YOUR HEART ON YOUR SLEEVE
In the Middle Ages knights who fought at tournaments wore a token of their lady on their sleeves. Today if you make your feelings obvious to everybody you wear your heart on your sleeve.
COCK AND BULL STORY
Originates from the village of Stony Stratford in Buckinghamshire. In the village were two inns, The Cock and The Bull, which were staging posts on the London to Birmingham stagecoach route. It is said that news and anecdotes were exchanged both by passengers and coachmen seeking to impress travellers with their knowledge of current affairs. Inevitably, stories became embellished in the telling and retelling and the two establishments vied to furnish the most outlandish tales. These became known as Cock and Bull stories.
Did you know that Market Harborough WI is one of the biggest in the Leicestershire and Rutland Federation of WIs? We have 64 members. Well done, ladies, for achieving this feat after our first 3, very successful years.
There are 144 WIs in the Leicestershire and Rutland Federation with 4,776 members.
Monthly meetings of Market Harborough WI have an average of 39 members attending. We have had 7 new members this year.
Patsy-Anne Tracey, MHWI Membership Secretary, says, ‘I’d like to thank all the ladies who brought in the jars of all sizes for me for the wedding in June, which along with myself and several other relations, decorated these and I hope that the photos do them justice. They looked lovely. We eventually did over 700 jars, and I hope that I don’t see too many jars for at least a another year!!!’
‘Many thanks again for your support.’
We had a fun, and at times emotional, Annual Meeting on Wednesday, 24 September, during which we thanked Hazel as she stepped down from being our President after three wonderful and inspiring years. We shall definitely miss her fun and infectious style but look forward to seeing her being able to enjoy our meetings rather than being on the sidelines keeping everything going.
There was nervous anticipation as Anne (our Federation Advisor) asked for a new President to be elected and, after some
heart-stopping moments and a bit more prompting, Clare Farquhar bravely stepped up having been “cajoled” by various members of the committee. Clare asked that she was supported in the role by having a co-chairperson to help and Carmen Wilson put her hand up for that with Fiona Thompson becoming Secretary. We also thanked Jill Reeve for all her hard work on the Committee (as she is stepping down) and welcomed Annabel Smith as a new member of the Committee.
WI Book Sculptures presented to Committee Members by outgoing President, Hazel Stacey
We had a brief introduction to the campaign that the NFWI is promoting, in which Fiona encouraged members to think about organ donation and most importantly to tell their family of their decision. She emphasised that would-be donors must speak to their families as it is the families who play a vital role by giving consent to organ donation.
There was the usual spread of delicious food to tuck into while we all got busy sewing our lavender hearts.
I personally was amazed and impressed by the array of different interpretations of the craft activity. I think that is my favourite part of doing such activities as we see our members’ personalities reflected in what they produce. I love the photo of the cake, the heart and the raffle tickets as I think it is the perfect reflection of the evening!
Pam Reed, member, sewing her lavender heart
‘Here’s an example of the craft activity we are doing at the WI AGM tomorrow night.
It’s to tie in with the WI’s Time to Talk about organ donation,’ says committee member Fiona Thompson.
‘The WI’s campaign encourages members to have a think about donation, make a decision and then talk about it to someone close to them. Time to Talk About Organ Donation is about easing the burden on grieving families. When families have a clear idea about what their deceased loved-one wanted, it makes it so much easier for them to fulfill their wishes. – See more at the WI’s national campaign website.’
Fiona concludes, ‘Our ladies will get to practise their whip stitch and make a lavender scented heart. I look forward to seeing you all there tomorrow evening.’
Yes, our very own Hazel Stacey will be stepping down as President at the AGM this month. If you think you could undertake this role, please call 07547 890 756 and find out more about this important role. You can also speak to any committee member at the AGM this Wednesday, 24 September.
Yes, another year has almost passed. Market Harborough WI will be 3 years’ old!
The evening will begin with the AGM. We’ll be considering the resolution to go forward to the National Federation of WIs, that of organ donation. This will then be followed by plenty of time to chat with other members and share a Dutch supper (do remember to bring some food to share). If you would like to enjoy a glass of wine, that’s fine – bring a bottle and some glasses.
While eating and drinking, we’ll also be making a decoration: a heart to go with the organ donation theme. Lots to keep you busy and a fun evening. See you there.
(Want some more ideas for making a heart decoration or similar activities? Go to www.Pinterest.com)