Celebrating Softness and Strength

Some of our members brought in favourite soft toys, who get together for a party !

Who knew you could find such diversity in soft elephants !

Sometimes we all need a little softness in our lives, and it is good to have an environment where we can celebrate our weakness for cuddly animals, as well as the inner strength which has helped several of our members though difficult times.

We could also celebrate Helen’s trip to a reception at the House of Lords as this year’s winner of the Paul Hope Award.

Helen with other Phab guests at the House of Lords

In the spirit of diversity Helen did not restrict herself to humans in making new friends …

Helen with a friendly seagull.

Helen did bring her trophy to Phab, but although we are always glad to welcome friends of members, she came without her new avian pal!

Serving Refreshments in church

Sometimes we serve refreshments in the John Wesley Room of Wesley Memorial Church, raising money for club funds. This time the church was open as a historic building, as part of the Oxford Preservation Trust Open Doors Weekend.

Chatting to the many people from all over the world who came to see the beautiful city were we are privileged to meet was a joy, and hopefully some of them will come away with some awareness of Phab and what we stand for. We also raised money for Rainbow House, a drop-in centre for accompanied pre-school children, which also meets at Wesley Memorial.

Cookies Galore !

For our last meeting before we break for Summer we took advantage of having a talented chef amongst our members. Maria made cookie dough, to which we could add a variety of toppings of our choice.

Maria baked them, assisted by Darren, and they emerged from the oven transformed! (and with a delicious aroma)

… and were eagerly eaten!

It was a great night, and we look forward to resuming in September.

Church Garden Party

Once again the sun shone on the Annual Wesley Memorial Church Garden Party. Many scones were made, and consumed with clotted cream and strawberry jam. In the interests of science both the Cornish method (jam first, cream on top) and the Devon method (cream first and then jam) were tested, and the conclusion ? – More research needed!

The swimming pool was available, as well as impromptu games of football and badminton, and to top off the event a choir sang madrigals.

It was a welcome opportunity for Phab and church members to mingle and chat.

Thanks to many generous donations the event also raised over £500 for Oxford Phab.

A sad goodbye to Wendy

Wendy, who had been a member of Oxford Phab for over 20 years, died on the morning of Monday 5th June 2023.

She was keen on craft activities, Zumba and Phab Discos, and our regular club nights where we get together and chat.

George and Wendy at a Club Night

She also performed, as a backing Chicken in ‘We are poultry’ – part of our Phabulous Evening of Entertainment in June 2003, and as part of the hairy bunch of Ishmaelites in a Wesley Memorial Church production of Joseph, in October 2003.

We are Poultry singers and chorus
Wendy in white tee-shirt in the chorus

She came on holiday with us to Alton Towers and enjoyed the more sedate rides there.

She will be missed, particularly for her concern for others and her bursts of enthusiasm for the simple pleasures in life – often shared in the car on the way to or from Phab.

An interesting Quiz Night

Tom and Martha teamed up to give us another interesting and well-balanced quiz. Questions included recognizing biscuits and board games from pictures, some of only a part of the subject – enough for the teams to know they have seen it, but not always enough to be able to identify it.

We play in teams, and it is helpful to have a range of interests on the team, and surprising to find out what members know. We also learnt some things that none of us knew, such as that a sloth takes two weeks to digest a meal, and that the animal which produces cuboid poo is the wombat. We also played a couple of Rebus games, which some members had not encountered, and enjoyed once they caught on to the format.