House Blog Autumn Term Second Half 2022

As the cold winter nights draw in, and chapel hymns switch to festive carols, there can be no denying that Christmas is all around us. The second part of the Autumn term is always very special at Wycombe Abbey. Preparing for Christmas in a boarding house is a truly magical time. Fairy lights go up; Christmas trees are decorated and the organisation for a whole house secret Santa begins. From the December 1 there is a warm buzz in every boarding family and it’s one of the things that I find most special about life in Rubens. Our pink team have been very busy decorating dorms and organising advent calendars for their family trees – most of which are eaten immediately within minutes of having been delivered! Every Christmas the House also makes a donation to One Can Trust. This year we were asked to collect cooking oil, and Rubens made a superb effort to donate cooking oil for families in need this Christmas time.

At the start of this term, the LIV made their traditional offering for the House Guy Fawkes competition. This year, the girls made a Percy Pig wedding cake. Pink and fabulous and very pretty, the girls worked together brilliantly and certainly won points for creating a very pretty guy for the bonfire.

This term also saw the girls take part in a House Christmas cake making competition. The girls made their cakes from scratch all under the watchful expert eye of our matron, Mrs Pearce. As a final flourish, the girls then decorated their cakes. Miss Rowley and Miss Hoyle judged the cakes, and finally concluded that Poppy (LIV), Dotty (UIV) and Ria (UV) would take the top three places!

This year, Rubens had the privilege of running the final House chapel service of the Autumn term. Our theme of service explored one of the key principles of our community and lots of girls took part in shaping the presentation for chapel. Particular thanks to Natalia (LVI) for writing the service and Aanya (LVI) and Wania (LVI) for conducting the choir of 70 in a rousing rendition of ‘Feed the World’.

Christmas time in House means decorations. The Rubens LVI made a superb effort this year and created a winter wonderland for the whole House. Balloons, wrapping paper, snowflakes and many sweets decked the halls of our House much to the joy of the youngest members. Well done to the LVI for their work here.

Joining your senior House is an exciting part of every students journey at Wycombe Abbey. Now that we are at the end of our busy Autumn term, some of the Rubens LIV reflect on their first term in House.

Emily (LIV): Being in Rubens is really so much more about responsibility and independence. You get to plan out your own time and also get a decent amount of free time for relaxing too. Having mixed aged dorms also help us out a lot because you get to learn and enhance what you know from what the older girls share with you. It is really great to form friendships or relationships between each year group as they help you settle in in situations where they can give you suitable advice or encouragement. Being in Rubens is so great as you feel like every day is always special e.g. Toastie Tuesday or Pasta bake Wednesday. There are always things that could cheer you up. My peers in Rubens are also very considerate and always seem to forever bend to whatever is necessary in order to make you comfortable and that really adds to the feeling of home. This first term has absolutely opened my eyes to a new side of boarding that is exciting and so full of surprises and at this rate, these five years will be very much cherished but at the same time will pass like lightning.

Bea (LIV): It was really easy adjusting from junior House to Rubens as the older girls were so friendly, and easy to talk to (along with the wonderful house staff!). Though there were a lot of differences (and it took me a second to truly understand the meaning of tuck in dorms!) The whole House has been so welcoming and I feel really lucky to have been put in Rubens.

Miranda (LIV): During the transition from Junior House into Rubens, it is easy to feel a bit overwhelmed. But all the House staff and girls help you and it’s a fun environment with kind people. It’s an amazing opportunity to be in Rubens, and an even more amazing opportunity to be able to get to know so many more people and staff. Everyone is so welcoming, and helpful and willing to answer questions about your new house. Rubens is an amazing house and I’m so happy I get to be a part of it.

Clemmie (LIV): The transition from Junior House, where everything is kept to a strict routine, to Rubens, where there is much more freedom, is something that I at first had mixed feelings about, but I soon settled in and realised that having more free time and the ability to be independent were exciting new opportunities. The idea of being in dorms with older girls also seemed daunting, but from the very first night everyone was so supportive and understanding about the overwhelming concept of moving into a new house and year. I feel so grateful for the incredible opportunity I have been given by being put into Rubens. I really believe that Rubens is the house with the most warm and welcoming family, which is what makes it so special. I especially enjoy hot chocolate and toastie nights!  

Mia (LIV): As soon as I found out that I was in Rubens, I immediately jumped up out of my chair. I was so excited to be in such a nice House, with a great colour too! Everyone is so nice and helpful, and it feels great to be part of such an amazing community. From House games to sports day, to in-House activities, there are countless ways of how you can get integrated with the Rubens pink family. Especially as a day boarder, I have found that interaction and getting involved in House is a key part to feeling a sense of belonging. Luckily for us, the Rubens family makes things very easy to not feel left out. For me, the best thing about joining a senior House is that you have a lot more independence, and it is a great opportunity to build life-long bonds and friendships, not only with your year group but with older girls as well. Rubens is such an amazing community and I feel so lucky to be a part of it. I couldn’t imagine being in any other House.