Thank you for asking!
It was frickin’ awesome.
This weekend, was just what I thought it should be. How often do any of us
get to say that?
Several times in my life, I’ve thought about hosting retreats for women, but didn’t know how to make it happen and forgot about it.
I’ve also wished there was a retreat that offered what I needed and wanted, but couldn’t find it.
Almost a year ago, I felt a deep sense of excitement and clarity about hosting retreats.
I wanted to create a relaxing, restorative getaway for a small and cozy group of women somewhere beautiful. I’d describe it as part spiritual and wellness retreat + part girls getaway.
I’ve been on retreats. And they mostly aren’t for me. Why?
Because I’m on someone else’s agenda. And they can feel stiff, uptight, and boring.
I’m an expert at creating my own restorative escapes and don’t want to feel like I have to do a bunch of stuff that other people tell me I need to do.
What a sour puss! Yeah, I know. What can I say?
I need my freedom and I need my downtime.
So, how do I design this most excellent getaway for myself?
My must haves are:
Moving my body
Resting my body
Eating healthy foods and something fancy like a foo foo bottle of champagne or Godiva chocolate
Eating something “fun” like a double cheese and pepperoni pizza with a coke
Time for journaling and listening to the Lord
Getting clarity on something
Reading (both of the smarty pants and dumb dumb variety, sometimes both, just depends on how taxed my brain is)
TV/movie escape time- avoiding the three S’s here- serious, sad, or scary
Buying something new and pretty- usually pajamas, but some fun earrings are always a candidate.
Time for pampery stuff- face mask or DIY pedicure
Beautiful surroundings. The mountains, the beach, green earth
So I wanted all of the girls to have my personal musts for the trip.
Plus, I wanted them to feel like they were completely taken care of, loved and encouraged in every way, and like they are special people and they matter. I wanted them to feel God’s presence with them and feel His love, and find some clarity.
I think that vision was met. The women were so wonderful and lovely, so encouraging to me, the other hosts and one another. It was just a truly beautiful, simple, sweet, nurturing weekend.
This was an official retreat, but it was also a bit of a test run.
I’m so thankful for the women who went, all of whom are friends of mine and friends with each other. That added a special element, of course.
And I had two other coaches and friends helping create this wonderful event. We each brought something different to the event and were open and available for whatever we felt was needed at any point.
Some of the highlights were:
The gorgeous and serene lake house, a gracious donation for the weekend
The exceptional women who came, what wonderful people. And the bonds that were deepened over the trip
The clarity and direction that each girl received
The delicious food, the candlelit -too late for a fire- sofa conversations
Yoga, meditation, and spiritual discussions led by Mari Beth Poor, Jen Crowell, and myself
The music- a great mix of well selected tunes. Approved by my overly sensitive musical tastes
The slow, relaxed pace, with built in rest time
A surprise gift for me was the unexpected ride home with my friend Kristina.
She had a wonderful trip and wanted to hear from me. She’s a great listener and wanted to know some of my feelings and insights about how it all went. And that was a really great come down and clarifier.
I know I want to host more retreats.
Some like this. Some different.
I feel my task is to stay open, keep my ears listening. Be available and be flexible.
I want to say, “Hey God, what do you want to do this time?”
Then do it.
I’m pretty much up for anything here.
Location, duration, inspiration.
I need to have an excitement and peace about it, have support hosting, and feel like God’s the boss.
That’s all I know so far.
Reach out to me if you’re interested in going on a retreat! I’d love to hear from you and get your thoughts.
I’m curious to see where this goes and how large a part of Make It Joy it becomes.
Beats me what happens from here.
But oh what fun to be a part of it! Thanks for including me, God!