Refresh and revitalise – 12th January 2021

Our members have been busy and have plans for the coming year.

The garden is the most popular area for a refresh – not least because gardening is calming and gets us out in the fresh air.

Cleaning and decorating were on several lists of things to do. We shall see how that progresses.

We welcomed Nikki, who is the new person at BLF Mind.

Nikki said she was keen on starting new hobbies, but the equipment often ended up stored under the stairs – this would now change… probably.

It looks like most of us will be excising more!

Gyda’s crafts

Gyda thought we would like a bobble hat. The keen crafters started immediately. Some of the team (me) will have to plan before starting.

David gave us his spin on Reflect & Revitalise.

Gerry said he would have a poem for us next week. This week he is planning to install a new shed.

Quizmaster Lynne had a quiz with a wide variety of questions

For example…

  • Who fell down the hill first – Jack or Jill?
  • What sort of a creature is a Mud Skipper?
  • Who wrote “Animal Farm”?.

Pearl’s best joke:

Pearl got us singing and dancing to “If I had a hammer” and “Right Said Fred”.

As we claimed we wanted to do more exercise – Gyda had us doing Chi Ball again.

David’s paintings

David has been using off-cuts from Gyda’s craft sessions to produce collages – then using them as a basis for paintings. A example is above on the right. We look forward to an art show from David when we eventually return to Shrewsbury House.

Gyda invited us to have more gratitude:

Next time – favourite songs from movies. My vote is for the king of rock and roll singing “The Young Ones” in the film of the same name.

Stay home, Protect the NHS, Save lives, Refresh & revitalise.

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New Year’s resolutions – 5th January 2021

We welcomed everyone back for a New Year and a new start.

It looks like people are beginning the year on a positive note. We also discussed some interesting actions from previous years. These included:

  • Cycling from London to Brighton
  • Raising £1,500 for the Anthony Nolan charity
  • Agreeing to appear in GMTV only wearing black underwear

Gyda had us making a snowman. A craft which was very popular with out crafty group.

Gyda’s crafts

Gyda also suggested we could make a chart/snake to measure our mood on each day of the month.

Our top quizmaster – Lynne – gave us another tricky quiz. Perhaps it could have been a bit tougher – one person got 11/11 right.

Here is a sample of the questions…

  • In January 1877, Queen Victoria was proclaimed Empress of which country?
  • Which company was incorporated in January 1977 by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak?
  • In January 1959, this TV series premiered staring Clint Eastwood.

A New Year’s joke from Pearl:

Pearl got us to sing and dance with Cliff Richard and Gerry and the Pacemakers.

Everyone was a little worn out after Pearl’s sessions. Gyda managed to calm us down with some thoughts about the New Year.

Gyda speaks to us all:

We were very pleased to hear that several member have vaccination appointments lined-up for the near future.

Stay home, Protect the NHS, Save lives.

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Christmas presents & Panto – 15th December 2020

Christmas is getting closer and presents are on our mind.

We dressed-up for the festivities..

The group told us they preferred personal presents, who doesn’t. But beware, tokens may be a good option, but they are not that popular.

I missed Judith introducing her friend, but Janet took a photo.

Here are a few of the presents group members received when they were young (you might spot Judith’s)…

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At last, the moment we had all been waiting for (oh no we hadn’t – oh yes we had!).

The Reflections Christmas Panto

Cinderella part 1

Waltz interlude

Cinderella part 2

Everyone joined-in with the panto, either as characters or the appreciative audience. There were too many stars to mention – thank you to everyone who participated, without any rehearsal. The costumes and make-up were excellent.

Pearl gave us some totally topical jokes:

I think Pearl excelled again herself this week.

Gyda introduced her mystery: Santa’s Treasure Map. There were 20 items to find on the map. You can play along with Gyda’s clues below…

Lynne managed to slip in a quiz – a slightly easier one this week – even I got some questions right!

Gyda’s read a “Partridge in a Pear Tree”:

That’s it for the 2020 group. We are back on 5th January 2021.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

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Christmas traditions & Getting ready for Christmas – 8th December 2020

Christmas is getting closer and it seemed like the right time to talk about Christmas traditions.

This week Emma returned for a Christmas sing-a-long in the second hour. But first…

The group likes their Christmases shared with family and friends. They are not keen on partying and eating and drinking too much. We managed to squeeze-in lots to talk about – and we all said we are looking forward to joining the Reflections Christmas pantomime next week!

Gyda showed us how to make a Father Christmas in her craft session.

Emma made a welcome return. She got us to limber-up, then it was straight into the singing. Emma, always one to engage the group, asked Janet to sing a few lines of the chorus. Unfortunately, then I was asked for a contribution – Emma described my voice a “as work in progress”. Luckily, Emma took it from there and raced through a wide selection of our Christmas favourites.

David read us his “Christmas Traditions”:

Everyone was getting into the Christmas spirit.

Pearl gave us two of her best jokes:

Time ws rushing along. We just had time for a Reflection piece from Gyda.

Gyda’s “Accepting our best”:

Suddenly it was 3pm and time to return to home.

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First cars – 1st December 2020

This week – our first cars – and there was a lot to choose from. Two had been missing part of their floors (!) and one had the handbrake welded into the wrong place (and therefore unusable!).

Judith shared us some interesting vehicles. Then we moved on to discus his and hers experiences with their first cars…


Gyda’s craft session was all about making a reindeer – and very springy it was too.

Lynne had more difficult quiz questions. I went for a cuppa as, this week, they were beyond me.

David read us a history of his cars:

Members popped in and out as usual as the session progressed. One popped out more than most, as his dishwasher had a leak!

Pearl warmed us up with a joke:

Pearl had us singing and dancing along to a medley of popular tunes.

Gyda’s wrapping paper reflection:

David was pleased to show his completed homework from Gyda’s craft sessions.

We kept chatting until it was time for tea and a break.

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Going out out – 24th November 2020

A group member had suggested this week’s theme and everyone was very keen to tell us about their youthful experiences.

The discussions were in full flow, so Janet prompted some more reminiscence.


We moved onto Gyda’s craft session. Today we joined-in making a Christmas fairy.

Our quiz host, Lynne, had some tricky questions today. The group were up to the challenge!

David told us about Entertainment:

David also showed us some more of his paintings and lino-cuts. Look out for photos in later blogs.

Pearl gave us a bumper joke fest:

Pearl had us singing and dancing as usual, with some top tunes.

Gerry told us about “A children’s party”:

Gyda put us through our paces again with a Chi-ball (or toilet roll) exercise session.

Our volunteers were fully engaged in the fun. Sharon, from The Carers Centre, was particularly thoughtful.

Gyda suggested we take a break:

The session just overran a bit, not much, this week.

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Sayings – 17th November 2020

Janet asked the group members if they had any sayings they remembered from their parents, friends and others. They did indeed. Here are a few of them.


Many of these will be familiar, some odd, but all sparked memories in those who said them.

Gyda continued with her Christmas paper decorations. Today, a Christmas tree.

Our quiz host, Lynne was on top form again with two sessions of brain teasers.

Pearl had a joke about a clock:

Pearl’s sing-a-long went well. When we reach the mid post of the session, we all enjoy an excuse to sing and, for some, to dance.

Gerry had some more sayings:

Gyda put us through our paces with another Chi-ball exercise session. Those who could’t put their hands on a ball were invited to use a toilet roll as a substitute – it worked.

Another of David’s paintings of the group – a work in progress. David has promised to bring in a selection of his paintings, when we all get back together again.

Gyda had a swift magical lesson:

We overran, as we always do. There is just so much to try and fit in.

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Celebration food – 10th November 2020

Food glorious food turned out to be a very popular subject this week.

Our polls showed that the most popular Christmas snack was “Anything with chocolate” and for Christmas lunch, sprouts were more popular than turkey. We all joined in the discussion, which perked-up as soon a someone mentioned Christmas pudding made with fruit soaked in alcohol. The magic word was alcohol, which raised even more smiles than chocolate.

Gyda has started Christmas early with a simple paper decoration. As usual, group members were keen to refine their creations after the meeting.

Livia La Camera

Livia gave us a presentation on healthy eating and engaged us in a short discussion on our eating and drinking habits (we all appear to know what we should be doing). You may find out more about the GCDA and their training events here. Livia is the Greenwich Co-operative Development Agency Healthy (GCDA) Programmes Development Lead.

Pearl had a selection of food jokes:

Pearl’s sing-a-long went well. Sharon, from the Carers Centre, managed a boogie before she had to go.

David read his poem “The second lockdown”

At this point I popped out of the meeting for a snack. Many of the group entered into the spirit of the session with a few nibbles and a drink.

Gerry almost had a healthy option with “Fish and chips”:

Lynne, the quiz hostess, baffled some of us (me) with her tricky questions. Others did well – one even managed to get 23 correct answers to 22 questions!

As usual we ended with Tony’s version of “3 little birds”.

Gyda was on light duties today. After her excellent craft session, she had the opportunity to soak up the atmosphere for a change.

I managed to pop in to today’s meeting and thoroughly enjoyed it.

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Happy surprises – 3rd November 2020

We were asked to come us with our Happy Surprises and nearly all of us did.

Group members took us through their surprises, both this year and in the recent past. These ranged from the surprise arrival of a sister from Canada, to arrival of new grandchildren. We were very pleased to hear people’s plans for the immediate future. This also prompted some of the group to think what they might do.

We also discussed November 5th – bonfire night. Group members recalled having fireworks at home or going to the display on Blackheath. Nobody will be going to Blackheath for fireworks this year – as we will be in another lockdown from Thursday.

David showed us some of the very many paintings on his walls. This was a new one – he said his efforts were becoming more abstract as time went on. He plans to do a Reflections Friendship Group Zoomers painting – it should be fabulous.

Gyda’s paper craft this time was all about making our own fireworks.

Pearl’s fireworks:

David is now a regular Reflections poet, with a self-penned reading most weeks.

David gave us “The fifth of November”

One happy surprise today was the return of Danny. He needed to leave before Pearl introduced her latest batch of songs. There followed both singing and dancing – including Janet’s favourite: ‘Ring of Fire’ as sung by Tony:

Gerry read “Life is full of surprises”:

Lynne was our quiz hostess. I’m sure her quizzes are getting harder. Here is one question: ‘How long did it take to conceal the gunpowder in the Parliament cellars’. Answer: ‘One Year’!

Gyda introduced us to some Chi Yoga – using a toilet roll!

We had more singing later with Tony’s version of “3 little birds”.

Gyda suggested we take care of ourselves emotionally:

I shall be taking a break from the Friendship Group sessions for a while. But, I will be popping in occasionally and keeping this blog up to date. See you soon.

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Halloween – 27th October 2020

Nothing to be spooked by here…

Janet introduced our annual fun Halloween session. Not everyone recognised her as the woman in black.

The session had a seasonal theme, so we asked everyone what was best about the autumn.

We chatted about enjoying the outside and coming back to our warm cosy homes.

Gyda returned us to spookier ideas with do-it-yourself bats and witches. As usual, there was a lot of happy crafters.

Pearl’s spiders:

Pearl was particularly scary in her mask. Fortunately, her grandson (making his second guest appearance) found it very funny.

David gave us his spin on Halloween

Pearl insisted we sing some more up-beat songs. There was lots of singing and dancing

Gerry read “Halloween night”:

Lynne and Laila did the quiz duties today.

Sharon had brought her halo with her! She told us the Carers Centre had been quite busy and was even running a couple of classes.

We had more singing later with Tony’s version of “3 little birds”.

Gyda’s calming hand massage:

As usual, we overran a little.

You may now nominate Reflections as your charity when you buy items on Amazon. Click here for more information. It does not cost you (or the retailer) anything and Reflections will receive 0.5% of what you spend.