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Annual Womens Institute meeting had business and social themes

PALMERSTON - Socializing has always been priority and May 11 was no exception when the annual meeting of the Wellington North District of the Women’s Institute was held at the Palmerston United Church.

Although there was a good number present, it was sad to note one more lamb left the fold when Moorefield WI found it necessary to disband during 2010. The Women’s Institute is an historic organization with a modern vision. The current two-year theme is Back 2 Basics, which has two areas of focus, past and present, as we work towards creating a vibrant future.

Anne Reid, member of the hostess branch Carry-On WI, welcomed everyone and extended a thanks to the visitors from outside the district. The meeting opened in the usual manner with O Canada, followed by the Institute Ode and Mary Stewart Collect.

Peggy Roger, a new member and transfer to Beehive, gave the In Memoriam and those who had passed during the year were remembered with the 23rd Psalm and the Lord’s Prayer.

Throughout the afternoon several smiles were read. It was interesting to note for years, the first time any new member sees “bring a smile” on the agenda, it is always interpreted as be your best, and put a happy smile on your face, when, in reality, it means “be prepared to read a joke for entertainment.”

Reports were given by all the committee conveners: Stephanie Wade was the scholarship recipient and was presented with her award at the Norwell District Secondary School commencement;

- Wellington County Historical Society has completed Volume 24 of the annual journal and it will be released in June. The publication highlights the theme Heritage Foods;

- the Harriston Historical Society has a home and is now open to the public;

- the Erin district has published a book on barns;

- the Federated Women’s Institute of Ontario has given permission to the Friends of the Lee group to do fundraising for the Erland Lee museum. That will defer the decision on the feasibility of retaining the building;

- the Country Heritage Park (Milton) will feature knitting and weaving this summer;

- Tweedsmuir guidelines regarding privacy concerns have been drafted for the institute scrapbooks. Most have been digitized and are located at the Wellington County Museum; the books are then returned to the respective institutes.

Guest speaker for the afternoon was Vicki Laforge who had an informative talk and slide presentation on Women’s Heart Health. Laforge, who worked at the Palmerston Hospital for 17 years, has also nursed her way from Kingston to Calgary.

Laforge gave some eye-opening statistics when she related that every day in Canada equal numbers of men and women succumb to cardiovascular disease. Women’s average age of presenting symptoms is 10 years older than males. Women have very different symptoms, and heart disease and stroke kill more women than breast cancer.

Females tend to ignore symptoms and deny an attack might be imminent because they are too busy to look after themselves. Women do not generally experience the truck-on-the-chest feeling that quickly identifies trouble for men. Females exhibit unusual tiredness; pain (attributed to indigestion) which goes right through to the back; shortness of breath; numbness in neck or jaw; or profuse sweating.

If anyone has an unusual discomfort anywhere from nose to navel it is an opening for an electrocardiogram.

Ignoring (for the moment) the dietary warnings just related, the group enjoyed a bountiful buffet served by the church women.

The election of officers was held.

Numbers are few, and as Dorelene Anderson put it, “We are just recycling the same women over and over.”

Peggy Roger (Beehive) volunteered to be treasurer to alleviate the work of the secretary. Audrey Connell (Carry-On) then consented to undertake another year in the secretarial role. Betty Audet (Carry-On) will be the assistant secretary-treasurer.

The rest of the positions remained identical to last year.

For entertainment, Heather Janzen (Beehive) sang two numbers. Little Ireland presented a short skit on aprons, and the host institute, Carry-On arranged with Fran Dawson, a  qualified leader, to guide the group in some light yet effective stretching and strengthening exercises..

The draw for door prizes ended a successful and fun-filled women’s day out.



May 27, 2011


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