Then yesterday I spent the morning going to all the shops in Ferndown town centre, asking if they had any gifts we could give to our guests at the lunch.
I stressed that just a couple of items would be lovely - stockingfillers of any sort. I had two bagsful to bring home, plus promises of something 'once the District Manager has OK'd it' from a few shops. By midday, I decided I was getting really good at scrounging! The three opticians I visited gave me glasses cleaning kits, the chocolate shop gave me cute gift boxes with chocs in, another gift shop gave me some soaps 'these are more masculine ones for your male visitors' The electrical shop gave me easy-operate mini torches ... and as the morning wore on, I got more and more items.
I hesitated outside the Very Posh Gift Shop. Then confidently went in, smiled and explained what I was doing, and said "I appreciate your goods are all premium quality and their price reflects that - but could you spare some giftwrap, please?" and came away with giftwrap, and party balloons!
Which all goes to show the truth of "Ask and you will receive"
So THANKYOU to all those generous people who said how pleased they were that we were doing this for the Community. It was useful having cards with our new logo on, to show where I'd come from!