Archive for May 2013

Book Club - My Sister, My Love - Joyce Carol Oates

Thursday, 30 May 2013 § 0

We met  in the lovely but slighty echoey environs of the Tiled Hall CafĂ© to discuss My Sister, My Love by Joyce Carol Oates – a story which the Guardian has described as ‘ a lavish, cynical portrait of family dysfunction’. Inspired by the real life murder of American pre teen beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey it is the story of Bliss Rampike upcoming ice skating superstar and her murder. The depressing tale is told by her surviving brother Skyler.
The book was my suggestion as I first read it a few years ago and I’ll nail my colours to the mast now – I adore Joyce Carol Oates  - she is one of the few authors to make me cry and I find  her surgically precise evocative writing  a joy to read – even when she is writing about sad and disturbing topics.
 Re-reading it for Book Club just further confirmed my love of her writing and thankfully I wasn’t alone in my appreciation of her skill though the difficulty of the subject matter was also discussed. We also agreed about our feeling of distaste towards beauty pageants for very young children and the potentially damaging consequences of such competitions. The consensus of the group about the book was that it was  ‘grim, challenging but rewarding’.
We also discussed making a few changes to the way we run – we’re now going to meet every 6 weeks instead of once a month as that will give us a bit more time between meetings for reading and all the suggestions for books to read are going to be put on pieces of paper and put into a hat and we’ll take it in turns to pick a suggestion from the hat
We are a very friendly book club  - we don’t mind if you haven’t finished the book, only seen a film version of it or just read a Wikipedia entry about it – come along and share your opinions - next meeting will be on Sunday 21st July 2pm when we will be discussing The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald – venue to be confirmed but likely to be Tiled Hall Cafe - but suggestions for new venues welcome.


May meeting - Talking About a Resolution

Monday, 27 May 2013 § 0

May saw the first meeting with the new committee and was also a chance to help shape what the WI campaigns on over the next year - as well as seeing a welcome return of the Buns & Roses craft stash. After the usual meeting admin Gloria and Susan spoke to the Roses about the resolution going forward to this year's National Federation AGM on the decline of the our high streets and town centres.

They talked us through some of the key issues surrounding the resolution and a lively debate followed with the Roses discussing the pros and cons all the while carrying out some fab craft project. Gloria and Susan also had a fiendish quiz prepared for the group with various pictures of Leeds in the past which the Roses had to identify. Big congratulations go to Ellie who was able to identify all the pictures picking up a well deserved prize.

During the night the members also voted on whether to support the resolution at the National AGM with 5 votes in favour of the resolution and 12 against.

Ellie with her prize

May Workshop - (Knit and) Purl Jam

Thursday, 16 May 2013 § 0

Our May workshop was (Knit and) Purl Jam - where the lovely Helen, Trina and Siobhan passed on their fab knitting skills to the group. The Roses who attended were split into three groups – absolute beginners who were taught how to make that all important first stitch, for those who could do the basics they were taught how to do a purl stitch and for those a little bit more advanced they had cabling demystified for them (which involves a rather interesting looking needles).

Armed with needles and yarn the aim was that everyone who attended would able to knit a basic square which can then be turned into a variety of projects  including coasters, place mats and bags. Overall, the evening was a huge success with everyone leaving having learnt a new skill and bursting with ideas for new projects.