|So sad to leave this lovely creative place - amazing memories forever!|
|Christy with Margie and Chrissy - She Matters Art Retreat 2013|
I also want to do a couple posts ... as I am a gluten free blogger as well (another blog I need to get working on) so I want to also blog to my "gluten-free-eating-is-their-way-of life" peeps about how the food and meals went ... once that one is also done I will link to it here. ;) I can only touch lightly on all that was learned and shared and I am sure little "heart-felt" pieces of this retreat will show up in my works and life for a long time to come. :)
|Chalkboard Art Class - by Chrissy Gardner (she rocks!)|
|Ben and Margie took care of us so well ... delightful|
We were also blessed to be taken well care of by Margie Romney-Aslett (@justagirl on instagram) who spent each day not only helping our awesome Chef Ben Tomlinson put out some amazing good for your soul comfort meals, but adding her lovely thoughtful sweet touches to our table, to make us feel so special. We were blessed to spend time with these amazingly thoughtful people and I hope make some new friendships I will cherish, and time with Christy and Ben's awesome family - they have 6 wonderful children - 5 fabulous guys and 1 beautiful young lady. It was a treat ~ truly all the love and good feelings in this home made me homesick for my own lovely little family. :)
And this is not even getting me started on the all the beautiful new women friends that I was so pleased to meet and spend an awesome week creating and learning beside. I (Edmonton - Canada) traveled down to the retreat with my friend Melanni (Airdrie, Canada) ~ but all the other women well we were all meeting for the first time and we were from all over - Michelle (Las Vegas), Laurie (Kansas), Fay (Nashville), Iris (Atlantic City) and lovely Shirly came all the way from (Isreal). All walks of life and experiences. We all did have one lovely fact in common - we were all inspired by Christy Tomlinson - her amazing sweet nature, her "just try it - there are no mistakes" attitude, her real approach to life, art and love. Everyone that was in our little mixed group - women, men, kids ~ all had stories to tell and parts of themselves to share - I keep using the words amazing, wonderful, awesome but in truth that is exactly what this experience was ~ everyday from morning to bed time, full of these soul lifting moments.
|Right side: Christy, Michelle & Shirly-Fay, Iris, Melanni-Sherri & Laurie :)|
|Abstract Painting outside, She Art - Paper and Paint, Chalkboard Art|
In my household - my family - we have had a tough time, the hardest is my dear son losing his dad this July to a horribly fast acting cancer - I think the shock could have been enough to just stop us in our tracks, but you can't can you? You have to continue on don't you? I have felt at times that things should just stop, that the world should not keep spinning so fast ... it had left me fighting to keep myself looking ahead to what must be easier moments, trying to keep myself "whole" to be strong for my son and all he is going through. I was trying to keep my art "washing away the dust of my soul" but I was struggling. This retreat meant so much to me. Not only did it feel like a healing of the creative spirit it gave me an inner boost of the strength that I need to fuel my motivation - for everything.
Christy truly made us feel that the "She" (WE) mattered ... I will forever be thankful and yes feel pretty darn blessed (my son has been saying I have been using this word often since I returned home) that I was able to attend and partake in this lovely experience with all these amazing people.
Truly if you have the opportunity to either join Christy in one of the retreats she is a part of ... or even take an online class or two from her or ones she hosts with or for her talented friends ~ take the "leap" - it can be life changing, it certainly was for me.
Biggest hugs out to all of you,
|So thankful for these special people who made this experience magical. Hugs :)|
|Christy showing us how to paint "Abstract Paintings" outside on the beautiful sunny Saturday|
|Amazing women - old and new friends ~ great memories made - always in my heart now. :)|