Day 2911 – Recap Of My First Personal Retreat

Whew! What a great retreat! I’ve always wanted to lock myself away to write and think for a few days, I’m glad I was finally able to do so. Just going made this a successful retreat.

It was a beautiful drive down.

Of course we had to get Krispy Kreme!

We did go over our $227.38 budget. We spent $280.15. But a few things about that. $21.47 of that was spent via giftcards we were given, and money already on my Dunkin account. We spent about $10-15 more on a tip because of a really great server. We have leftover food and gas, so in my mind, it wasn’t THAT much more. If you look at the cash spent, we spent $258.68. And I wouldn’t take a single purchase back.

This was the first time we stayed at a cabin in a state park. I will definitely be doing that again! It was nice not having to set up a tent, and pack up a tent. Our set up and clean up were very easy. We did have a critter trying to eat the cabin early in the morning but that just goes with the territory. There were a few points when Bret was on a walk or in the restroom, when I thought I might get eaten by squirrels. They were SO brazen in how close they got.

That’s a squirrel under the back corner of my chair!

Critters seemed to be the theme of the retreat. While walking one day, we noticed a deer. Because of our angle and the sun, we thought….is that a white deer or just the sun? Upon further investigating, and terrible quiet walking on my part, we got close enough to find, yes, it was a white deer! After a little research, it turns out it’s a Piebald deer, and they are really rare. How cool to see something so rare!

We’re listening to a great book called Keep Moving by Dick Van Dyke, which was a great intro and outro to the retreat. He talks about aging and it is just a fantastic ride. I highly recommend it….and make sure you get the audio book read by the author.

I’m really glad that we got breakfast on the way home, because I have to say, it was one of THE best I’ve ever had.

It seems that this retreat was also about doing things I’ve always wanted to do. Every time I drive home from the beach, I’m tempted to stop at one of the stands or shops with produce and Smith Island Cakes. I always see them, think, ooooo, I want to stop!, but I never do. There is a twinge of regret each time. Yesterday, I saw the big sign for Smith Island Cakes (at this point, I thought we had passed all the shops), safely slammed on the breaks, and turned in. It took a few minutes to decide between a cookies and creme or a peanut butter slice, but I settled on peanut butter. Oh my goodness. So worth the stop!

I learned a lot about myself this week, and I got confirmation on things that I suppressed about myself. I’m embracing me as me. I cried, I laughed, I grew. I read four books. I highly recommend taking a retreat like this. Have a few goals before you go….but don’t make them so large you can’t hit them. For me, the biggest success was just going. It was something I always wanted to do. While I had 3 pages of notes, questions, and goals, I accepted that what would happen would happen. My biggest takeaway was that I can have a retreat mindset every day. I experienced so much growth and thinking just preparing for the time away. I’ve found a few hacks that work for me to recreate this “time away” feeling, so I can keep growing, even though I’m at home. Just last night, I cranked up my classic music and read from a book I’ve been trying to read for months. I learned that I make WAY too many excuses for things. I can’t wait to see how the things I recognized in myself and my work change over the next few weeks.

Have you ever taken a personal retreat? Let me know in the comments below!

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About 365 days of marriage

I started this blog in April of 2011. At the time, Bret and I were wedding photographers and it was a way to share how marriage is more about the day to day and so much more than the wedding day itself. For about 5 years, I blogged about the joys and sorrows of the Christian walk, marriage, work, family and friends. I’ve blogged every day since a few weeks after I started. In May of 2015, we photographed our last wedding. Now, I have become passionate about simplicity, particularly in marriage, Christianity, business, travel and life. For a number of reasons, we have become minimalists. I’ve found that having simplicity makes life so much deeper, refreshing and joyful. I hope that this blog will help others see the benefits of living simply.

5 thoughts on “Day 2911 – Recap Of My First Personal Retreat

    • It was absolutely amazing, and so much value for what we spent. lol, but hubby and are very easy to please. Ha ha, those squirrels were a little terrifying…but definitely cute! I don’t think I knew there aren’t squirrels over there! New Zealand is definitely on my very long bucket list. Is it as breathtaking to live there as I think it is?

      • Glad you had a nice time, I look forward to reading more of your blogs.
        Hmm great question! I do love living here to be honest. As a fellow nature lover, I think you would enjoy a holiday here. The beaches, bush walks and mountains are pretty nice. If you are on Twitter, I invite you to fine me as I often share my morning walk to work sunrises there @nowineimfine
        If not, here are some recent beach pics I took at my favourite beach, Whangamata. https://nowineimfine.wordpress.com/2017/03/19/early-sobriety-the-power-of-solo-retreats/
        Have a great week 😊

      • Ah, it’s stunning. Absolutely stunning. I’m very rarely on twitter. Ha ha, I have all of my accounts set up to post there, but I never go on. But I did follow you with my travel account (journeywiththegs). Oh my goodness, I just read that post, LOVED it. I wish I had taken more time to think through my sobriety at the beginning. It took me almost 3 years to realize one of my biggest demons (taking ANY excuse as an excuse to indulge….which I still do with food, checking out early from work, watching hours of TV shows)….ha ha, on my personal retreat this week. Even though it wasn’t solo, hubby was great at knowing when to question me about things and when to give me space. Ah! I’m so glad we found each other on the interwebs. πŸ˜€

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