1st Barming Rainbows plans for Christmas began in September 2015 with a booking to Girlguiding’s London HQ to “I Can Do” for a morning of Christmas activities. After a long wait, we finally left on Saturday 9 December to head to London on a lovely bright morning. The Rainbows gathered to meet Yellow Duckling, White Polar Bear, Orange Fox, Grey Rabbit and Blue Dolphin (Leaders). Our journey began and the girls settled down on the train colouring pictures and watching for the deer as the train passed through the countryside. Once we reached Victoria station the girls paired off and we made our way down Buckingham Palace Road until we reached Girlguiding HQ.
We were greeted by the reception staff who made the Rainbows very welcome and asked them to look after a little toy donkey which had been left behind by another group. The girls were very excited and paired the donkey with their own Rainbow Bear and promised to take turns to care for them. We descended to the basement where we were to take part in the activities, we were then joined by two groups of Brownies. After being given group names; we were Reindeer’s and the others were Snowman and Elves, the activities got under way.
Our first activity was to make a Santa by decorating a bun with icing, next was a trip to the shop for some last minute Christmas presents. Once back downstairs, we continued with the activities and it was our turn to make a Christmas tree using a large spiral of paper decorated with glitter. Our next activity was to make a reindeer using a flannel, a bar of soap and pipe cleaners, then our final activity was making a small wreath decoration out of buttons that could be hung on a tree at home. Finally, we all gathered together to sing a few Christmas carols and were greeted by a surprise visit from Santa who gave the girls a little gift. The Rainbows all promised to keep it safe until Christmas Day before we then said our goodbyes and thank you for our lovely time.
Once we had eaten our lunch we walked to Buckingham Palace where we had our photo taken by the front gates. The Rainbows were amazed at the number of other visitors taking their own photos in this special place. After what felt like a long walk, we reached Victoria Station for our return trip home. Once back in Maidstone we were met by eager parents waiting to hear the day’s events enjoyment had by all.
We carried on our Christmas activities by getting involved in the local community as a District. During our meetings leading up to the end of term, some of the Senior Section and Guides made individual Christmas cakes, Brownies and Rainbows made cards and we spent two evenings at the Royal British Legion Village. On the first evening we went to visit Queen Elizabeth Court. The residents came down from their rooms for our visit and joined us in carol singing. The girls handed out cakes and cards to the residents which were received with open arms. The residents and girls said how much they had enjoyed the evening with residents inviting them to come again. Our second visit was to Gavin Astor House. Residents here are in need of greater care and they have to spend more time in their rooms due to being bedbound. Girls, leaders and a few parents walked around the corridors stopping outside the residents rooms and if requested entered the rooms to sing more carols. At the end of the evening, more cards and cakes were left for the residents. Further visits are being arranged this this year helping us to help the community spirit.
We are now looking forward to the adventures we’ll have as a District in 2017.