Wednesday, November 5

Final Retreat Photos!

So, are many of you like me and you got caught up in all the election coverage yesterday and then more today? My what a historic time in our country - great voter turnout, almost no glitches in the voting process and Barack Obama elected President. I found the entire coverage compelling. I thought John McCain's concession speech was eloquent and heartfelt and Barack Obama's speech inspired hope and change. We are in tough times in our country but we've been there before and we'll get through them again. While I watched the coverage, I was stitching on my patriotic crazy quilt piece. I am all done stitching along the pieces and adding trims. However, there are some spaces that needed something and then last night, I figured out what I'll do. My hope had been to finish it on Election Day, now I'm shooting for Veteran's Day! :-)

Meanwhile, back to the retreat. Here are the photos from our last day, Sunday.

In the picture above you can see the chapel that it in the center of Villa Maria. Lovely isn't it?
A Sunday morning mass is held at 9:00 a.m. and is open to anyone who wishes to attend. You don't have to be staying at the Villa to attend mass there so many neighbors also come for worship.
A continental breakfast is always available for early risers on Sunday morning and then a brunch follows Sunday service. The brunch was yummy. The kitchen cooks make really good scrambled eggs!
I wanted to show you this piece as it hangs in the dining room at the Villa. Double click on the photo for a close-up and you will see that it is done with wool. The picture doesn't do the piece justice. There are several items at the Villa that are donated by visitors. I would love to tell you the name of the artist who did this piece but there was no name with it.

Just before I went to bed Saturday night, I laid out the paper-pieced blocks that everyone did so they would be ready for the lucky winner on Sunday afternoon. And I had four final doorprizes that were going to go to the last four names in the "Lucky Duck" wicker basket.
Here are three of the final four prizes. You'll see later what the fourth one is. :-)

After morning brunch we only had a couple more hours of sewing time. All the big projects had been packed and everyone was just working on last minute stuff. I finally found the pic of Barb and her basket. She made this one and another one with a solid fabric instead of the pieced squares. Those baskets are so cute. Thank you Ayumi for designing the pattern and sharing it with all of us!!! The Library becomes like home when we are there. We get so settled in that it is hard to pack up and go home!!

Our last two hours of sewing time just flew by and pretty soon it was time for an afternoon snack before everyone left for the drive home. Kate had given a call to home and learned that the weather was windy, wet and there was blowing snow falling so everyone started seriously packing up so we could enjoy our snack and final thoughts and doorprizes.
Jane is "racing" to the table for the leftovers from our Friday night supper. :-) We all managed to gather around the table while I shared some readings and thoughts on friendship and our weekend together. We are and will be "Friends Forever"!!

So, who won the doorprizes. Well, Carol M. won the fall fabrics in the oval box with the tin lid and Arlis won the fabric wrapped package that was a pretty journal for special quilting thoughts. Barb was thrilled to win the glittery fall fabrics that came from JoAnn Fabrics. That left only one doorprize and one name in the basket and that was Kate.

I had filled a small basket with all the scraps from the paper pieced project plus a few more fall and Halloween fabrics....................

and as she took them out to look at them .................. and she got to the bottom of the basket...........she was so surprised..............because she got the lovely ugly fabric but the bonus was a ten-dollar bill (and it was real) to go out and buy some lovely fabric of her choice. Oh, did we have a good laugh over this!!!! The deal is that she has to make a small totebag with the leftover ugly fabric and bring it back when we meet at the next retreat and she is to put a length of ugly fabric in the bag for one of us to win! Oh, we do have fun!!! We laughed some more when Collette's name was drawn for the paper-pieced blocks. She wasn't sure she should take them but everybody encouraged her to keep them and bring them back finished at the next retreat.

We had one more treat for the gals and we almost forgot to do it. Collette had found a recipe for Pumpkin Lattes in "Autumn by Susan Branch" so we quickly put on the coffee and Collette got to work making the concoctions for those who wanted a coffee. They were pretty yummy!

I asked Sharon to snap a picture of Collette and me together. We had so much fun planning and preparing for the retreat plus just being at the Villa is something we enjoy so much!

Once everyone else had left, we sort of relaxed and sewed just a bit and organized our stuff as we packed so it wouldn't be such a mess to unpack and put away once we reached home! It had been a lovely weekend but the wind was bitter and light rain was falling so packing the car was not all that pleasant. We really hated to leave but took comfort in knowing that we'll be back again soon.
I wanted to share one last original connection to finding Villa Maria came through the church I attended in Prior Lake, MN. Prior to our move from there, the church went through a change in worship/ministry style and so there was a lot of "out with the old". There were many banners, some that I made, others that were made by my friends Nancy and Laurel, artificial flowers, music and such. It was my place to find homes for some of those things and I brought all but two of the banners (about 13 total) to Villa Maria. The staff has hung some in various areas and some are brought out just for special occasions. It is really nice to see them being used and appreciated. The flowers came to the church I attend here in Henderson and the music went on to another members church. It is good to know that they continue to be of value and use to other congregations rather than tossed to the wind.
Turn out the was time to go was dark and cold but we talked about our next retreat all the way home (a two hour drive) and we are so excited about what we have planned for our friends in September of 2010!
That's all for the retreat unless I recall some things that I may have forgotten. It was on my mind all afternoon as I sorted through my box of Halloween fabrics and projects that I brought home from the retreat. I spent several hours playing with the stuff and making Halloween print crazy quilt blocks and my Halloween cottage blocks. Got to start thinking Christmas pretty soon. Maybe just a few more days of fall and Halloween and then I'll put it all away til next year. It's hard to think of Christmas when it's warm enough here to have the windows open and not wear a coat. Lovin' it!!
Good night and good morning!
Oops! I forgot to tell you who left the bedbugs in the hall on Saturday night. It was Kate but that quiet, shy Joan had left them on Kate's bed this time and then Kate brought them down the hall and left them for us to find as we went to bed. Oh, we did have a good time!!


Kritta22 said...

Oh my goodness what fun you girls had. I hope to get involved in one of these groups at our next station. You make my heart proud! Thanks!

Sandra :) said...

I loved reading about all the fun you ladies had - now - don't let the bed bugs bite!!! ;)

Nihal said...

Oh my.. Peace+Fun+Friendship+Sharing all those blessings surround you Sandi, wasn't it heavenly. I N'JoY so much reading your daily adventures with nice photos.
As for the Star Tribune, please Sandi ask your son to have it for me, I'd love you FOREVER if you can mail me when you can:)
And, one more similar request from this blogging girl...
I know Obama's victory is a momentous event but many obstacles must still be overcome. But very historique victorie, and I'd love to have 'only your front page' of which paper you read to keep aside with me in my library. Could you send me that one front page showing Obama's winning?
I hope my new request does not bother you Sandi.
Today I post a very rich selection of Obama's news from our local media and come to see what they are saying:)
Have a nice day, and many thanks in advance for the trouble you'll take for me while sending those 'important' papers to me.

Much Love & Kind regards.


Nanette Merrill and daughters said...

Friends are so important and getting together for a weekend now and then is a big treat. You and your daughter were wonderful retreat hosters in the great environment. Lovely bunch of ladies.

Jacquelynne said...

Sounds like a wonderful weekend, I'm sure you can hardly wait for the next one.

"Peace can be found in the piecing of a quilt."
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