Sunday, March 22, 2009

great friends and making new ones

This past weekend our church had their annual women's retreat. It was my first time ever going to a women's retreat, and it was beyond rewarding for me to be there. There are so many things you learn about your friends and people who you know from church but yet haven't formed a relationship with yet.

There were so many things that would have never come up on a Sunday morning conversation with these girls. Conversations that went further than "Hi, how are you doing? How was your week?" I loved getting to know these women on a different level.

Friday night was a blast. There were some line dancing lessons, that everyone age group got involved in. (wish I would've gotten pictures of that) There were lots of games and lots and lots of food.

Lots of curling up on the couches and late night talking and goofing off going on as well.

NOT sure what is being said here...but I can assure you it was very funny.

Some kind of eating contest someone borrowed my camera for.

This must have been around midnight. The excitement of a night out still going strong.

And the slap happy stage.

The next morning we had a worship time, and a sharing time. I think there were 5 women total that shared about a time in their life where things happened a totally different way then they would've thought it would have. Several months ago Jen who was planning the retreat asked me to share a time when things took a turn for me. I didn't think it would be that big of a deal since she was only asking for about 5 minutes of sharing. But holy cow..the closer this time drew...the more I regretted this decision. Not for the topic...I have no problem talking. But for the shear fear of getting in front of people. The fear of man (women) and what they would think. The fear if my point would come across they way I hoped. So by Saturday morning my stomach was in a knot. I just wanted to say.."Forget it. I changed my mind." But I knew that would cause a bigger deal than I wanted...getting lots of attention saying..."Heather, you can do it...It will be fine." And deep down I knew it would be fine. Donovan's aunt Gloria came through with a hug at just the right time and some encouragement and I was thankful for her prayers on my behalf. And it really was fine. I was so thankful I simply gave my talk sitting down in a big overstuffed chair...making for a very casual atmosphere. I was thinking if I would have to stand during my talk my knees would have knocked together like they do when I get nervous. I loved how the committee that planned this retreat created that atmosphere for that time. All the speakers spoke like this. We were just in one big circle all sitting in chairs and couches.
After some of the talks there was some time for journaling and personal reflection. Meeting in small groups and then later a craft time. :) I had to laugh when I saw that there would be a "craft time"-because I hadn't had a craft time since Jr. high. It was so fun though!

Here some of the girls are making small beaded key chains as a reminder that God is with us during times that seem like there is a gap of what you thought your life would be like and what it actually is. The girls in charge of the crafts made some really cool choices on the beads and the key chains turned out really cute.
I forgot to add the best part of the weekend, my friend Jen's sister came in from out of state to give massages. HELLO! It was only $15 for 30 minutes. It was so amazing. I had not had a massage for 3 years. I was due. It was the best I had ever had.

These are the girls I rode up to the camp with. Julie and Brooke.

My friend Rose, who does not know how to take a bad picture. Isn't she cute?? She has given me inspiration for an easier shorter cut....stayed tuned for a new hair do this week. Pictures to come.


Kim said...

That was a much needed break for a busy mama!

Jen Bontrager said...

I'm so glad you had a great time. You did a great job sharing. I'm so fortunate to be able to call you my friend. Have a good week!

Crazy Daze said...

Thanks for allowing yourself to be picked on for having an "ever persent camera" but you know that deep down we ALL appreciate the fact that you do the photography work for us! (Doubles please?) I too a great time too this weekend, and I loved getting to know you in a whole new way...or should i say getting to "smell you in a whole new way?" just ya, Brooke

Anonymous said...

Funny enough--I have started reading your blog from Sarah Steiner's--when I saw the pictures I thought, is that Friedenswald? The funny thing is that I was there too, at a different retreat :) Wish I could have met you in person.

The Blissfully Happy Housewife said...

First of all, I am so glad you had a wonderful time at your retreat! It's always nice to feel so refreshed!

Secondly, I have to tell you that I am SOOOOO with you when it comes to speaking in front of people! People laugh because I was a teacher for quite awhile, but I always say, "Yes, but that was talking in front of LITTLE PEOPLE - I can do that!!!" It's talking in front of people my own age that freaks me out!!! Ha!!!!


cheryl said...

Looks like lots of fun. It's so important for girls to get together, let their hair down, and just have fun. It's nice to have the time to sit and chat and learn that we're all more alike than we realize. I'm glad it was fun.

Cottonista said...

What a cool idea! Glad you had a good time.

Jenn said...

Yes, miss Rose is a cutie. I met her back when I was in Rosedale. Please tell her hello for me.

Can't wait to see the new "do"