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Saturday, July 14, 2007

Mid Week Magic

I need some help. This isn't really my job at church but it is really clear that our midweek Enrichment activities are not working and I'd love to have some ideas to suggest. There are only about 4-5 sisters in our ward that attend and most of us attend all of them. This does not mean that 4-5 are there every week. This means that at any given activity one or two of those are going and they are the only ones at the activity.

It makes me think back to our days at Purdue and how awesome our midweek activities were (BEFORE midweek activities were actually a part of the Enrichment program) and I'm wondering how to get more people involved around here. I won't even go into how I've been trying to get a service auction in place (I don't think our Enrichment counselor is "catching the vision" of what an amazing activity this is).

What we have going on right now: a book group, a cooking group, and a card making group.

Our ward is a little more traditional than the ward in Purdue. We don't have 60 kids in the nursery and a plethora of young marrieds. What kinds of activities are being supported by your wards where you live? What would you attend? We've just had an influx of new people move in and it would be nice to have some activities for them (AND ME!) to attend.

14 comments:

  1. We are thinking seriously of the service auction. We decided we wanted the vt conference in September to be motivating and spiritual (who knows if we will accomplish that) because our vt statistics are poor. We are thinking of the service auction for our 4th enrichment this year.
    I agree our mid-week activities are poorly attended and we have given many opportunities to suggest what they might like to attend. I don't know what the answer is. I hope your blog readers can come up with some awesome ideas!!

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  2. I'm so glad to hear that my ward isn't the only ward having this problem. Oh how I would love to have activities to go to. We did have a book group going, but it dissolved for the summer and I worry that it won't pick up again. We don't have any other groups going. I keep trying to get some going, but it seems like other people just don't have the time to go to these types of activities. If you find something that works I'd love to hear it.

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  3. Not related but I finally posted to my blog :) A new photo of Samuel

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  4. Our activities have really good attendance, but I think that's because we have a lot of young families in the ward. (We are essentially a newly wed, nearly dead ward.) One activity that appeals to the masses is girl's night out. It's once a month and we choose a place to eat and hang out there for 1-2 or 3 :) hours. We also have 2 knitting groups that are really successful and Tues. nights we have horse play (volleyball or basketball) that has great attendance.

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  5. Our ward is doing pretty good. One of our activities that has a lot attending is the Children's Book Club. Someone new every months signs up to host it. They read a book, have an activity, and have a snack that goes along with the book.

    We have our dance aerobics which I LOVE! We have a Quilting Club, Recipe Club, Girl's Night Out (Love that one too), and a Book Club that has had no attendance for the last 4 or 5 months.

    I'm the Interest Group Leader and what I've found that works is I send out emails a day or two before the activity. Everyone has the good intentions, but just forget about it. We also have a section for the interest groups in our weekly newsletter. Oh, and I Interest group books that have everything going on. There are three of them so Primary, YW, and Relief Society has their own and no one feels left out.

    Sorry, this is so long, but hey, it's my job. Anyway, good luck.

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  6. Christy,
    Our ward has done these:

    1) SOL-Sister's seeking learning: Focuses on something the sister's want to learn. One week was organization skills, one week was CPR, etc. Held every other week for an hour.

    2)Playgroup once a week-someone hosts (provide a place...sometimes thier home, sometimes the park, sometimes the swimming pool) and they provide treats (usually just a capri sun, etc).

    3) We also did a ward girls' night out-they call it Wild Women's night out...hold it at various restaurants around town.

    Don't be offended by those not attending. I know that with working, it's super hard to attend. (I haven't attended one activity in my ward--due largely in part to the fact that they hold the activities during the day, but I know it's hard with so many schedules).

    Good luck! Shanna

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  7. Arbee9:28 PM

    Right now, our ward is having a bread-making class once a week... This is an activity I have not attended, but it is one that is actually being offered in the evenings. So far, they have made bread in a bag (you mix all the ingredients and knead it all in a 1-gallon ziploc), french bread/sweet bread and the next one is flour tortillas. From what I hear it has been well-attended, but I'm not sure if it's the topic or if it is because of the time. We have quite a few ladies that work in the ward, we're in the "missionfield" - San Antonio, TX.

    Our Mid-Week has usually been some sort of craft, so maybe this is more interesting too. I'm not "crafty" although I enjoy making cards/scrapbooking and sewing a teeny bit. The last thing I need is another "craft thing" to dust around the house...so even if I didn't work, I probably wouldn't attend any activity that involved making a craft.

    Just my .02 for what it's worth...

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  8. Hi! My name is Nicole and I live in Tijeras, NM. I got to your blog from Mary Harper's blog and have really enjoyed it! I am also the Enrichment Specialist in our ward. We have Culinary Club - every month we learn something new. This months theme is "All Things Cold" - cold soups, appitizers, main dishes, etc. Sometimes we invite husbands sometimes it is ladies only. We also have Park Group once a week. Sewing Club and Scrap Booking. This past weekend we had a Trash to Treasure exchange. We have lots planned and I would love to share it with you. I just feel like I took much space already! my blog is RockyMountainMama.

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  9. KEEP TAKING UP SPACE, COMMENTERS! All the comments have been great so far.

    The email reminders sounds like a good idea.

    Nicole--trash to treasure? Sounds like fun!

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  10. In my ward here we have several groups going, and I think they have all been pretty decently attended. I think it is funny though, because unlike Lafayette, where the same people were attending all the time and no one new, here it seems like each month it is a different group of people.They already had a book group and a quilting group when i first moved in. Since I got called to be enrichment leader, we now have a recipe group, a girls night out group, and a sewing group. This group is actually combined with the quilting group now, so it involves all aspects of sewing.We also have a walking group that meets Mon.-Fri. at a designated location and time to walk.A girl recently approached me about wanting to find ways to do more service, so she is now heading up a service group. I only know of one activity that they have done so far. They met at the church to clean the nursery toys. The girl's night out group went bowling one month, played games at someone's house one month (till 2 a.m.!), and this month they are having a "campfire" in someone's backyard with marshmallow roasting, campfire stories, etc.

    On a different note, on the months that we aren't holding our quarterly meetings, we are still offering a "mini-class" type activity. These have been smaller attendance, like around 15, but everyone has enjoyed themselves. We have been utilizing the skills and talents of the sisters to teach different things. We had a lady teach nutrition (that was Judy!) and another sister teach jazzercize. Next month we will have someone teach us how to cut hair, and the next month we will have one of the sisters teach self-defense. Her and her husband are black belts in karate.I think this is a good way for the sisters to get to know each other a bit better, and it also allows the women an opportunity to share their talents and skills with others. Maybe one month I will teach card-making or folk dancing! I mean really, who knows I can dance an irish jig?(these days requiring TONS of supportive underclothing) Anyway...you get the idea.

    BTW...seriously encourage the service auction. That was the first activity I planned as the enrichment leader, and it was a HUGE hit, and they all want to do it again next year.The auctioneer that we got to volunteer was named Charlie Angel. Cool, huh? In fact, the youth copied the idea as a fundraiser for scout camp and young women's camp. Only using real money of course. Ok. enough from me!

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  11. Christy, great question!

    I admit that I don't know much about the program and hardly ever attend (conflicts in schedule and forgetting). So just forgive me if I say something ignorant:)!

    Maybe there needs to be some more praying/fasting for inspiration? (don't get mad at me, just stating the obvious)

    Also, I like the idea of someone different being in charge each month (of a certain group). I wouldn't want to be charge of a group every month for the whole year, but one month is a lot easier to commit to. Someone just needs to be in charge of coordinating.

    One way to get people involved is by asking them to do or bring something.

    Love the idea of e-mail reminders.
    The one time I went to card-making night, was when Rachel actually called to remind me about it.

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  12. Kori....you crack me up. I miss all you guys!

    I did want to say, and I didn't mention it before with the hosting is that all of our groups are hosted by someone that signs up. The only ones that have the same leader is the dance aerobics and the quilting group. Even those have quest host. That way not one person is doing it all the time. It invites anyone to be involved. That's another reason why we send the books around that I mentioned before to Primary and YW. So, they have a chance to sign up and don't feel left out...like usual.

    I would also like to say that this has been a good discussion Christy. This is a new calling and it's nice to hear what other Interest group leaders are doing for their wards. There is nothing in the handbook...yet...on this calling so it does take a lot of inspiration and praying. So, thanks!

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  13. I like the girls night out idea.

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  14. The trash to treasure enrichment activity is like a yard sale except you do not exchange money. You bring your trash and "exchange" it for someone elses trash which then becomes your new treasure. At the end of the exchange all left over items are donated to a local thrift store. This was held inside the church gym so people passing by would not think we were having an actual yard sale and want to buy something. It was a lot fun. For Aug. we have planned a water storage and sanitation bucket class, an all day service project making dolls and quilts to send to Salt Lake (we will also have a pot luck that day), a ward camp out with a chili and dutch oven cooking contest. We will also be making emergency school back pack kits. I'm not really sure what this is but I will let you know once I figure it out. Sept. will be a R.S. retreat where we will play "speed friendshiping" which is like speed dating, a BBQ dinner, a craft, and put together hygine kits. October we will be doing 72 hour meal kits and back packs. November will be a super Sat. which will have Christmas crafts and some sort of service project. All this is in addtion to the regular enrichment activities of, sewing, cooking, scrapbooking and park group. I will try and keep you posted if we come up with anything that really worked great and was fun!

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