Monday, May 23, 2011

The Retreat

Last weekend's Retreat was beautiful.

Here's a glimpse at what we experienced. Our great Retreat photographer, Rebecca Walters, did such a great job capturing the sharing, pondering, listening, connecting, discovering, love and energy involved in the event. Here are a few of her photos:

Lunchtime discussion rotations - so many wonderful ideas from so many wonderful moms

I like this candid showing me and my sister Charity standing ready for our next part.
I'm so grateful that Charity and I got to work together on these past two Retreats.
I love how you can also see Tiffany (in the pink towards the right) -
she was such a key part of running this Retreat as well as the Trainer session at the end.

Here are some of the key presenters.  Charity, me, April and Allyson Reynolds.
Emi Edgley and my parents are in the collage above and another presenter, DeAnne Flynn is below.
Such a great team of presenters.

I'm totally exhausted and totally energized at the same time.  Strange combination, huh?

Preparing for a Retreat means 100's of hours of planning the agenda, coordinating topics, analyzing what attendees said they needed most on their questionnaires, figuring out where to put all the chairs and getting them set up, making sure the food and the parking and all that is squared away (with lots of help from my dear sister, Charity).  It's a LOT.  Then keeping my wits about me through so many hours of presenting and coordinating and listening and tying things together and keeping an eye on logistics is extremely mentally and physically exhausting.  And it would probably be impossible if it weren't for the support and help of so many wonderful women and of my Heavenly Father. 

But in the end, I think I get more than I give.

This weekend, as the palpable energy and goodness of 100 deliberate moms filled my parents' house, my heart was full.  I felt the kind of joy you can only feel when you place your best efforts in the hands of the Lord and then watch beautiful things unfold.

I'm so grateful that I get to be a part of all this.  I'm so grateful that I get to be a mother and that I have a mother who has been such a shining example for me. I'm so grateful for the chance to share the experiences and ideas that I've been been blessed with with others while drawing out and learning from their experiences. I'm so grateful for my partner April and for all the people who prepared excellent presentations, set up chairs, helped with food, drove shuttle cars to get everyone to my parents' house where there's no parking.  And I'm so grateful for each and every attendee for coming and for bringing their great ideas and their earnest desires and their beautiful spirits to the event.

I hardly want to think about this right now - but we are offering another Retreat June 11.  More on that once I've fully caught my breath and spent some time enjoying my family and putting what I learned at the Retreat into practice!


Sunshine Promises said...

You are offering ANOTHER retreat? Wow. Just wow.

Good luck, girl. I don't know how you do it.

shawni said...

Oh Sar, it looks like it was fabulous!!! I'm so glad I was at the last one so I can picture how it went. I'm sure this one had it's own unique charm. I love mothers!

Eyrealm said...

I'm SO happy for these pictures. I hardly snapped a shot! What fun we had! Saren you are amazing and we are so grateful for that incredible April too! You two are simply dynamite! Loved all the help from every corner too! Mom's rule...literally!

Rebecca said...

I was so happy I came to the retreat. It was wonderful and I had fun taking the pictures. So glad you moved here and so glad Eliza is buddies with Rachel and Lucy:)

mom said...

That was SO fun! Such great moms!


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