Monday, October 24, 2011

Retreat retreat!!

Last year my sister and I organized and created the Southern Utah Fall Mom retreat. This year I WAS NOT going to do it. I was NEVER going to do all of that work again. It was insane.

Never say never. I should know that by now.

In August several people emailed me and then I was even cornered in a meeting about the need to do another retreat. All in one day.

HA! Nothing was going to change my mind. I had already learned so much at the last retreat that I didn't think that I could possibly recreate such a wonderful experience.

I didn't want to dismiss those around me who pleaded with me to organize another retreat, so I told everyone that I would pray about it. (I knew God was in my corner on this one....I felt

HA! --ok that laugh was more of a thats-what-you-think-laugh.

As I prayed, the prompting came to me that there were experiences that need to occur for some moms, and I had the skills and knowledge that would bring this about. I learned that it wouldn't be the overwhelming growing experience for me, but that it was something that would be incredibly fulfilling as I serve moms who need this.

So...we did it!

Katy and I then plunged forward in rushing a plan for it. We sent out registration and began brainstorming a fantastic weekend. The theme that we planned around was LiberMom:Mother's Who Know.

But when the time came for the retreat, Katy had some family things come up and we both knew that she needed to stay home.

I was heartbroken!! A big motivator for me to organize the retreat was so that I could hang out with my cool sister. I knew it was the right thing for her to do, but it was still difficult for me.

Chicken Caesar salad...yumm yumm!!

The retreat was spectacular. It is always so refreshing to go up to the mountains and just BE. The speakers were guided by the spirit and spoke what was needed.

Heather giving her presentation.

It was not the life defining like last year, but I felt so fulfilled as I watched the other moms learn and grow. It gave me more of a desire to plan one for next year then I have ever felt. I am already thinking of ways to make next years retreat even more empowering to these amazing mothers. So I guess it was defining for me...just in a different way.

Funny, although it was geared for "homeschool" moms...homeschooling never really came up. It was mostly about having the relationships that you need to have with your children so that they will trust you enough to teach them. I think that is a universal principle. If you have a great relationship with your children, you can guide them to be strong sons and daughters of God.

Emily Clawson was our evening speaker. She was fantastic in following the spirit. It was funny how we were in sync so much. We had both planned to cover certain topics in our talks, it was great!! She took us on a vision walk, I am still processing what I learned. The big thing I learned was that I have a tendency to focus on my negative aspects and it is a distraction from the path that God has for me. It is keeping me from reaching my potential.

Shauna Bird Dunn..she has an AMAZING signature! It is a work of art. A very creative person. She is so creative in her presentations, and yet it still speaks right to your heart. Some truths are right in front of you and yet we seem to not see them. My strengths will help me overcome my weaknesses.

It was so delightful to meet so many wonderful women! There are some seriously awesome homeschooling moms out there! They are a serious inspiration to me!!

Heather Poll...what an amazing, genuine person. I am so blessed to know her. When she talks to you, she looks into your soul. She spills love right out of her eyes for everyone. This was taken about a half hour before we left, we had been cleaning up and I look a little well.

She taught some wonderful things about being a great wife. How a "natural wife" is an enemy to God and how not to be a "natural wife." What kind of attitudes are not helping my marriage and some of the differences between men and women. It really brought a fresh perspective to me that I really needed. I really feel my marriage will be blessed.

We were up WAY to late. I think this was about 2:30 in the morning....we took a brief nap and were up and going at 6:30 to get breakfast ready. Crazy fun!!

The fantastic ladies that sweat right along side of me. LOVE these gals!

I am very grateful for this opportunity to have to do this. What a blessing it has been. Next year will be even better. We had a great pow-wow on the way home to make it even better.

If Katy will be there it will be better. That's all I need. Love you Katy!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

What can happen in a week...

A lot has happened this past week.

Almost 2 weeks ago I was helping clean out a house. The widower had finally passed away after living a rich, full life. A bittersweet reunion for the family as they clean out his house and go through his things. A project that must have been difficult on many levels.

As I helped sort books and gather picture frames that they were letting me have, it came up that they would be selling the house. I didn't think anything of it because it was a nice house that I had assumed that it was out of my price range. But, it turns out that it was indeed in our price range.

In the next few days we pondered and prayed and met with a realtor. In order to be able to purchase that house we had to sell this house.

Then we scurried to clean out the house to make it more sellable.

If you live somewhere for 10 collects a lot of STUFF. And believe it or not, thankfully during the summer we did a huge purge.

Honestly, I was AMAZED at how quickly the stuff became just that....STUFF that really didn't mean anything.

Everyone had to help.

I think there is a little excitement with the prospect of living is a larger house. This little 1000 feet feels a little cramped...or rather..cozy at times.

I don't know if we will be able to purchase the house. Seriously, we feel that it is completely in the Lord's hands whether or not we get it. To sell our house before anyone buys that house is a stretch since it is an amazing house. If it happens...great! If not, then there will be something else out there for our family.

But for now the house is looking pretty nice!!

P.S. my blog...I can do a p.s. if I want.

I was going stop the blog post..but it really seamed superfluous.

I know a lot can change in a week. For us, this is a really simple change. I have a friend, who's brother in law tragically passed away this last week. He left behind a tiny brand new baby and sweet wife. Last Sunday my friend and I were joking together about the prospect of the house we had our eye on. And then this week I pondered how she was doing. Yesterday was his funeral, this week will be a different change for them. Their life will never be the same. My thoughts are with them. Hug your family. Tell them you love them. Life is always to short.