I have a confession. Before last weekend, I’d never been to a retreat before.
And I have been missing out.
The basics : The Grand Rapids Modern Quilters (of which I am a member, but don’t hold that against them) had a weekend retreat at the Lake Ann Camp near Interlochen, MI. It was a smallish group, because the parent organization is still in the “building” phase – but we had such a good time.
The venue was everything we could have asked for. The setting was gorgeous, which was a bit distracting. I’d get a few things done… and then go back to the scenery.
This was the view from my sewing table. We had a great cabin to sleep in, just steps away.
And the room we were working in was huge, with lots of work space. Everybody had a well-lit space and a sturdy table all her own – plus a table to share with her neighbor.
When I needed to, I could go out and stretch my legs, walking trails on the pretty grounds. The local quilt shop, Interquilten, was handy for a break and the sweet ladies there even offered to make “emergency deliveries” if anybody ran out of thread, needles, or other supplies. Naturally, I had to get a pack of fat quarters from them when I visited. More on that in a later post.
Then I’d come back in, socialize a bit more, and sew a little longer.
We arrived on a Friday night, and had until 2 PM on Sunday. Though this was what was left of us by about noon on Sunday:
I was a bit annoyed to find that I’d left an entire box of fabric at home. But then, I seriously over-estimated how much I was going to get done! Even without children and husband, I have a bit of a squirrel brain and need periodic breaks. In addition, I’d brought along a pretty time-intensive project. I’ll share more of it later, since it may become a pattern for you, gentle reader. For now, suffice it to say, I found a vintage quilt on Pinterest that I fell in love with. Then I reworked its construction to avoid paper piecing or Y-seams, and picked out fabrics that should work in my youngest daughter’s room. She likes pink. Hence, the Peptobismol(TM) pink fabrics.
And even though I didn’t get as much done as I ought to have, I did enjoy getting to know the ladies of my quilt group a little better. Nor was it a bad thing to take a break from the constant every day grind of work-sleep-parent. Autism x2 can take a lot out of you! With my husband’s blessing, I rambled back down the Lake Michigan coast on the way home. I stopped at Point Betsie and took photos of the lighhouse.
Naturally, I had to stop and dip my puddies in the water. Side note: Lake Michigan is still darned cold in April.
I stopped off in Frankfort and looked around a bit.
I climbed the scenic lookout platform just North of Arcadia.
And then got a little vertigo looking down the bluff to the water:
Before I rambled home.
I love my children, even when they’re being their most Autistic. I love my husband, who puts up with me and manages the children better than I can, a lot of the time. But now and then, it’s nice to get a little break.
Thanks to all of the great ladies who made this retreat so much fun. And look for more teasers for this new quilt. You’ll have to let me know if you’d like to see it as a pattern!