I’VE NEVER SEEN YOU BERORE IN MY LIFE!: The cat will probably get a stocking this Christmas, as usual, with a couple of tins of cat food, and one of those balls on a stick, on a piece of elastic, and some special cat milk [I thought all milk was cat milk], but no, they do these special cartons of cat milk, so that gullible people like me can put one in the cat’s stocking to appease the grandchildren. Let me tell you though, this is the last year that the cat gets a stocking, because the littlest grandchild is turning her attention towards nail varnish this year[growing up entirely too fast,] and the cat couldn’t care less [truly] Cats can be intriguingly detached creatures. They make wonderful parents for the first few weeks [mother of the year, every one of them] but a few months later if they met their offspring on the street somewhere, they would deny all knowledge. [It’s sad that. Come to think of it I’ve a good mind not to bother with the ball on a string] the truth of it is, that they have us all wrapped around their little fingers don’t they? However, I love to see a happy cat curled up on the best chair, or hogging the fire, or having a little saucer of cream, when the rest of us are making do with semi-skimmed. Somehow they make a home, as much as a vase of daffodils, or a strategically placed cushion. [they purr as well, into the bargain], and their contentment is infectious. Someone once told me that if you want to sell a house, put some mixed spice on a baking tray, set it on a low oven, and as the smell of spice pervades the air, people will think the house smells homely, [as though there’s a cake in the oven.] Well having a cat spread- eagled on a pouffe has the same effect in a visual sense. So if anyone in the Iden vicinity is selling a house right now, and doesn’t have a cat, you can borrow mine, no charge, [one small stipulation though,] How about you buy the cat’s Christmas stocking [he’s not keen on tuna!]

THE SECOND SUNDAY IN ADVENT: There will be a service of Holy Communion on Sunday, 30th November, in Iden Parish Church at 9.30 am. The church is celebrating Advent, and we are reminded of the true meaning of Christmas. The walls of the Church are steeped in memories of Christmas’s past, and the Advent services of today, lead us forward into Christmas, as they have always done..

THANK YOU JILL: Jill Johnson is stepping down from her role as organiser of the Church flower group. Jill has worked very hard , particularly this year, as organising the ‘Tribute In Flowers’ for the Church’s First World War commemoration took a lot of effort, and the end-result was beautiful, and very moving. I’m sure that you would all wish to join me in thanking Jill for her years of service .Trish Evans, who ably helped Jill organise the ‘Tribute In Flowers’ has agreed to step in as the new flower-group organiser, and she will also be ably helped by Rosie Jones. Both these ladies are very experienced in floral arrangement. There was a ‘flower group coffee morning in the Old Hall last week , during which Christmas flowers were discussed .Church flowers are lovely, but they don’t just happen, they materialise through dedication, and organisation, considerable thought, and much foliage, so thank you to all the flower-ladies!

WHILE ON THE SUBJECT OF CHURCH FLOWERS: Are there any ladies in Iden who would like to join the church flower group? We need more members, and would be delighted if you could join us. It only means doing flowers on the altar once a year, and helping [as able] with special events on the Church’s calendar, such as Christmas and Easter, plus flower festivals .It’s very much a question of giving your time as and when you can, and anyone who enjoys arranging a pleasing vase of flowers at home, can spread their wings towards a church window sill .Please ring Trish Evans [telephone 01797-280070] if. you wish to join.

HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT BEING IN OUR PANTO?: Bob Hammond, is holding auditions for the pantomime ‘Alibaba And The Forty Thieves’ in the village hall, this Sunday 7th December, at 2.30 pm. Can all of you in Iden place a ‘hand on heart’, and say that you have already had your 15 minutes of fame, that you have been singled out in any way shape or form [I thought not, life can be cruel!] Don’t worry, now is your chance to shine. You can nip along to the village hall for your audition. [and be back well in time for the ‘Strictly’ results] There is such camaraderie, and fun to be had, so do go along and audition. Believe me, you have it in you!

SHORT MAT BOWLS: Every Wednesday in the village hall, from 2pm-4pm, is an afternoon of short- mat bowls. It’s great fun, so do think about coming along. It doesn’t matter if you have never bowled before. Please ring Teresa Parsons [telephone 01797-280143] if you wish to join .It costs only £3.50 for the hire of the hall, including refreshments.

BINGO: The last Bingo before Christmas is on Thursday 11th December, and promises some Christmas fun. The doors of Iden village hall open for Bingo at 2pm, eyes down at 2.30pm.Everyone from Iden and surrounding villages is welcome. There is a light tea at half time, and normal Bingo includes a flier, and a jackpot.

WAYSIDE PLANTS AND THEIR FOLKLORE: This is the topic of the talk at Iden and District Natural History Society, in Iden village hall, at 7.30 pm on Friday 12th December. The talk, given by Susan Scriven, costs £3 for visitors. Anyone wishing to become a member, can contact Colin Page [telephone 01797-224231] or Melvin Smith [telephone 01797-270587].

THE POP-IN: The last Pop-In, before Christmas, is on Monday 8th December, at 11am in the village hall. Everyone is welcome for some Christmas cheer.

Gill Griffin

Belfield, Main Street