Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Part Two of the Retreat Rehash!

Saturday morning was very foggy but most of us were up and at 'em in time for breakfast.  Shay and Diane opted to sleep in and had told me they would not be at breakfast which was a good thing as I might have knocked on their door otherwise. For breakfast there was a cereal bar that included fresh fruit or you could have the hash brown egg casserole with cheese and salsa, I think there were scones that morning also and let me tell you those scones were delicious! After breakfast was over everyone walked back to our stitching building and got down to the serious business of stitching. 

We also set out the Plum Street Sampler charts in case anyone was interested in purchasing one for Paulette's autograph.  Quite a few were interested and I had to call her to bring a couple of extras.  Calling her was a good idea anyway, I needed to warn her about the road so she didn't freak out. 

At noon it was time to head over for lunch and since Paulette hadn't arrived yet, we left a note on the door telling her where she could find us.  There was a salad bar for lunch along with hamburgers and for dessert we had brownies.   I had just put my tray on the table when my cell phone rang.  It was Paulette, wondering where we were (so much for leaving a note!)  I explained our location to her and stepped outside the building so she could spot me and since she had yet to eat lunch, she grabbed herself a tray and sat right down to join us.

After lunch, I began introducing the ladies to Paulette but it wasn't too long before she just plopped down at a table and people were coming up to her to get their charts signed and to visit with an actual Stitching Celebrity!  Not that Paulette thinks of herself that way because she doesn't.  I think she was more than a bit surprised that everyone was so eager to meet her and get her autograph but she was so gracious to everyone and handled it like a pro!  I have to interject here and say, this woman looks like a freaking 12 yr. old!  If I hadn't met her before, I would have said she sent one of her girls in her place.  I wonder if she keeps a mirror in her attic ala the Portrait of Dorian Grey?  I'm just saying....LOL!!       

Saturday afternoon we also exchanged recipes.  Everyone, including Paulette was asked to bring 30 copies of their favorite recipe to exchange.  I cheated and brought 2 but only because at our last Saturday stitch in March I had made Pizza Soup and everyone wanted a copy of that recipe but I had already done my recipe for the exchange and didn't want to waste them so they got an extra recipe from me.  We also brought a massage therapist in on Saturday afternoon for those that were interested in getting a massage.  It was well worth the $1.00/minute fee, let me tell you!  Throughout the day on Saturday we also sold raffle tickets.  The raffle prize was a tartan plaid pair of Sajou scissors.  The proceeds of the raffle will be donated to a Scholarship Fund for Non-Traditional students.

After autographing the afternoon away, Paulette finally sat down to stitch and she says she did a whole 12 stitches before getting up and wandering around to see what everyone else was stitching but I think she's stretching the truth a little.  I didn't actually see her put needle to fabric so I can't say for sure how much she actually did, but I would guess she did more than I did the entire 3 days.  You won't see a stitching update from me on this post!  At around 3:00, MaryAnn left to come back to town and pack up the store so we could have merchandise night.  She and Jim got back to camp around 5:30 and then it was a mad dash to get everything set up before supper.  After some pondering on Paulette's part she decided to stick around for supper before heading home.  We were happy to have her stay.   Supper that night was Roast beef, potatoes and carrots and lemon cake for dessert.  I inhaled supper quickly and headed back to continue setting up the store.  All too soon the ladies were back and chomping at the bit to shop!  But first, we had Paulette draw the winning Raffle Ticket. 

And the winner is.....ABBIE!!!

She and all the others helped us raise $250.00 for the scholarship fund!  Thank you ladies, you are the best!

Sadly, time was passing and Paulette wanted to be back on familiar ground before dark so everyone said their goodbyes and she set off for home.  Everyone was sad to see her go and we all hope she will join us again for our next retreat. 

Here's what the room looked like before we let people in to shop. 

And the shoppers browsing the store for goodies...

We closed up the store around 9 and spent the rest of the evening laughing, stitching and talking, the later it got the louder we got. 

I think Shay and Diane were the first to retire for the evening.  They had to get up to leave by 7 or 8 in the morning in order for Shay to catch her flight back to Chicago.  It was 1:00 before the last of us headed to bed.  Waaaay too late for me!

Breakfast Sunday morning was the cereal bar or French Toast and sausage.  After breakfast we opened the store again for those last minute I thought about it and decided I wanted to buy it shoppers. 

I have to tell you a funny story about Carole.  She is the sweetest lady you could ever meet. She's always talking about how bad her memory is anymore and how she no longer needs to buy new books because she doesn't remember reading the ones she has so she just keeps re-reading them.  I personally don't think her memory is as bad as she makes out but Sunday morning I had to wonder.    She supposedly started the retreat chart on Saturday and when she retired Saturday evening she rolled up her piece and left it on the table.  Sunday morning when she unrolled the fabric, there was no stitching on it!  It was a completely blank piece of fabric.    She stood there holding the fabric up as though the stitching would magically appear and protesting that she knew she had started that project on Saturday and what the hell could have happened to her stitching.  The rest of us were practically rolling on the floor by this time because the look on her face was hilarious.    She finally set the blank fabric down and wandered around for a few minutes and lo and behold when she returned to her table the stitching had magically reappeared!  I still don't know who the prankster was in our group and maybe we shouldn't have found the incident funny but we did and Carole was such a good sport about it!  We love you Carole!!

A lot of wonderful projects were worked on during the retreat and I would love to share some of them with you.

Below is Stacy.  She drove all the way from Peoria with 3 kids in the car to attend retreat.  She used to be a regular Last Saturday Stitcher until her husband was transferred.  We miss her.

 Doreen has been struggling with her missing stitching mojo.  She started Rosewood Manors Inspiration while at Retreat.  Hopefully she'll be able to keep the mojo flowing!

Merrilyn's Town & Country Sampler stitched over 1 on 40 ct

2 of Abbie's WIP's

Abbie's other WIP

Nancy found a WIP at the stash swap that she fell in love with!

Elaine with her Shores of Hawks Run Hollow

Merry worked on a Just Nan called Crystal Roses

Mary worked on the Retreat Exclusive

Sandy and her Little House  Rosey piece

Lois (our oldest stitcher at 82) and her butterfly

Connie finished her Joyful Summer by CCN
 Shay came to us all the way from Chicago, via Kansas City where she picked up or maybe I should say was picked up by her sister Diane.  Doesn't she have the prettiest smile? 

Diane working on her Fall Leaves picture

Deb is new to our group but seems to be fitting in quite nicely.  She had a heck of a time with her stitching though!  She spent most of her time reverse stitching!

Denise with her finish
 Here's Carol wandering around after her stitching magically became invisible...

She was admiring the Show and Tell that Elaine brought.  The beautiful Houses of Hawks Run Hallow

Taking a break to have some fun!

Connie was working on and actually finished  the Sampler Roundy from Shakespeare's Peddler.

She gets the prize for most readers belonging to one person.  And this is not her entire collection.  She left some at  home. 

And even with all that help from the readers, she still managed to do this...

Seriously, how does that happen?

Laurie finished her Primitive Needle chart  By the Light of the Moon...

 Nancy if you are reading this stop now cuz you can't see the next picture.  Donna said so.  
Donna finished this picture to give to Nancy.  She must like her sister way more than I like my mine!

The morning passed by too quickly and before we knew it, lunch was ready.  We had ham, au gratin potatoes, and jello poke cake.  And then one by one the stitcher's packed up their equipment, loaded their cars and headed on down the road.  The Stitcher's Recipe for Friendship Retreat was over and although everyone was a bit sad to see it end, I think I can speak for the lot of us and say that we all made some wonderful new friends that we will hopefully stay in contact with and perhaps see again in the future.  Maybe at the next retreat! 

And that is the end of my story.  I must apologize for the quality of the pictures.  My camera really does not do a good job indoors.  One of these days, I will upgrade but not any time in the near future.  If you lasted through this entire novel, kudos to you!  Thanks for hanging in there and thanks for the comments!  I appreciate them!

Take care till next time!


Monday, April 11, 2011

Retreat Rehash! Picture Heavy Part 1

I'm back from retreat and I lived to tell the tale...oh wait, I was told what happens at retreat stays at retreat so some things I will have to keep to myself.  Sorry.    BUT, as a consolation prize I have lots of pictures to share, I hope that helps take the sting of my editing away! 

We'll begin our story at, well, the beginning!  I was up and packed and ready to go in plenty of time, even managed to get to the shop before Mary Ann.  We discussed some last minute things, packed the cars with some last minute items and were just about to head out the door when a customer came in.  It was a good thing she came when she did, 2 minutes later and we would have been gone and she would have been S.O.L. because she needed a color conversion and fabric chosen for a project and Jim, Mary Ann's significant other and owner of the shop just isn't up to speed with color conversions and fabric choosing.  As those of you who have done a color conversion before know, it is not always an easy process but I got her done as quickly as possible, but unfortunately, the customer was in a chatty mood and it was an hour later before she finally left.  Putting us an hour behind schedule.  Connie had no idea we had been delayed and she headed out from her house at 10 as agreed, consequently, she hit the unexpected road mess first and luckily for me she called me to tell me to be careful.  The road she said was an absolute @#*&@#& mess with road graders and large trucks tearing it up and since it was a gravel road, and it had rained all day on Thursday she was not exaggerating as I found out when I got to that point.  My car barely made it through and I was instantly worried about all the retreaters getting through it.  Not that there was anything we could do about it at that point.  Putting that worry aside we pulled up to Calvin Crest.  NOTE:  All pictures are clickable to enlarge them.

It was kinda cool to see our event up on the sign!

Unloading the vehicles as quickly as possible we got to work getting everything set up, deciding how to put the tables, running the extension cords, hanging the Plum Street Sampler models,  putting the little packets on their pillows...all the little things that needed to be done before everyone arrived and due to our being late, we didn't get finished until 20 minutes before the first retreater was scheduled to arrive!

Stitching Room waiting for stitcher's

Plum Street Sampler Models
Small friendship bag was placed on each person's pillow

Contents of the above friendship bag

Connie and I were on luggage and room duty while Mary Ann manned the desk and got everyone checked in. 

At check in the ladies were given a Friendship box, a goodie bag, and their name tag.

The box contained an exclusive chart designed by Paulette Stewart of Plum Street Samplers, the fabric and the fibers to stitch it and a special card with a Stitcher's Recipe for Friendship on it.  My friend Eloise and I spent a week of long nights working on the boxes to get them just right.  She's a Stampin Up rep and has all the tools and such that were needed. 

The finished model

 I finished the model by mounting it on this pedestal made by the hubby.  He made 30 of them and by the time he was finished he was sick to death of them!  The pedestals were offered to the retreaters for a special price during vendor night.

Abbie was the first to arrive.  She is such a brave lady, she didn't know us from Adam and yet she drove by herself for 6 hours to attend the retreat, her very first retreat.  I would never have had the nerve to do that.  Connie took care of getting Abbie settled into her chosen stitching spot while I stayed  on duty at the door to help the next attendee that arrived.  For a while it was a steady stream of cars and a few panicked phone calls from ladies afraid they were on the wrong road or worried about getting stuck in the mud.  Happily, everyone made it through okay and the last retreaters arrived around 5:30p.m.  

Supper was served at 6:30 and after supper we set up the stash swap and let the ladies in to swap to their hearts content.  There was a lot of stash!  Tons of it in fact.

Stash for the swap

More Stash

Chairs with fabric

Another view

Swapping for Stash!

The rest of the evening was spent stitching and talking and getting to know all the new people we didn't know.  I can't tell you how much fun we had and the laughter was out of control at times!

Stacy and Linda
Carole and I

I called it a night around midnight.  Breakfast is served at 8a.m. at Calvin Crest.  Too early if you ask me!!

And so ends the first day of our Recipe for Friendship Retreat. 

I'll stop here for now.  It's almost 10:30p.m. and I have ignored the puppers all evening. 

Stay tuned for part two!

As always, thanks for stopping by and take care till next time!