Sunday, March 16, 2014

Retreat Quiet Time

I have to have "me" time. Preferably every day. It doesn't have to be large chunks of time...but it does have to be alone time. On a normal daily basis I find small pockets of time that I just grab for a quiet moment. The best "me" time is when I'm not thinking. Not contemplating. Not trying to attain a zen moment. It's just me, alone and quiet. Just for a moment. 

On our retreat, as you've already seen, the setting was perfect for "me time". Just perfect. 

The retreat's topic was relevant and definitely worth exploring. The overall topic was about "connecting" and living in the "now". When we find ourselves living in the moment, we feel replenished.

Inspired, I grabbed my beach chair and headed out to watch the waves and birds. 

I had not gotten settled when I looked out on the water's horizon and saw a single dolphin silently swim by. No drama. No splashing around. Just passing by. A few minutes later he surfaced again. I realized that my breath was catching with excitement. I wanted to get closer. But if I moved would I lose sight of him? I decided to risk it. 

So I ran to the pier. I RAN. I don't know if anyone saw me or what they would have thought. I mean I clearly wasn't going "out for a run". I ran to the pier and ran to the end of the pier with my camera in tow. It's a point and shoot (I left the SLR at home). So there I am at the end of the pier waiting and trying to guess where he will surface next. 

It was then that I realized that the camera has absolutely nothing to save it from being dropped and lost in the ocean. No strap to put around my wrist...nothing. Here I must tell you that it isn't "technically" my camera. It's my husband's. And much like someone being told "don't drop this", all I could think was "I'm going to drop this". 

Dolphin about to go back under. See the blow hole?
"Focus," I told myself. Stop being afraid of dropping the dang camera and take some pictures. Oops, he was just on the surface and now he's under again. He is silent. Just silent. He's so close to me that I know he will be passing by any minute. I begin to count to see how long between surfacing. I wanted to time when to snap the picture. Snapping the picture when I see him is too late. He's already below the water before the shutter finishes the shot. 

Thursday, March 13, 2014

I've Fallen (down a rabbit hole) and I Can't...

I've missed writing here. Please forgive my absence. I have wanted to write about so many things these past two days. Tonight I was almost giddy to be able to tell you you about a new writer I found. Her story was so spot on that it made my heart sing. 

But then, as the title of the post suggests, I fell down a rabbit hole. Hopefully this post will have enough continuity to be worth reading. I'm feeling very extemporaneous tonight. Which thing to tell you about first?? Okay, I think I will go with the new writer and her story. Then after that, I will give you a hint about the rabbit hole.

Here goes:
Today started like any other work day. Well, that isn't entirely true. My boss (really great boss), took vacation for the next two days. He never takes vacation. He's really great to work with and he is great about letting me know how much he values my work. He works hard. I used to think I work hard. But he works REALLY hard. He's passionate about what we do and I'm proud to be on his team. I know for a fact that he does not read my blog...or any social media for that matter, so all of those accolades I just paid him are simply to tell you that my boss is great and he never takes vacation. Having him take a vacation (out of town on a trip with his family) gave me the opportunity to see him almost in vacay mode. He was in a super good mood yesterday and SUPER FOCUSED. Which meant I was super focused because we had a lot to get done in just a half day. So today, I was not as focused as I usually am. Don't know if my brain was a little fried/frayed...or what. But that is what I mean by the day was a little different than usual.

Certainly not to imply that I didn't work today...I did...but I wasn't as efficient as I usually am...or wanted to be. Anyway, I had to take some corrections to a co-worker. And here is where my day got interesting.

In her office was a beautiful painting of a beachy landscape. When she told me that the painting was by her granddaughter I was even more intrigued. I really loved the color and the brush strokes. I couldn't take my eyes off the work. I asked if it was an oil painting because I've only used acrylic and I have this sense that oil may be "better" for large intense painting. But, no, it is acrylic. And, the granddaughter is in the 9th grade. Incredible!

After I couldn't stop talking about the painting my friend told me that her granddaughter's short story is published in a new book/anthology available on Amazon. What?? Yeah. The good news is that my friend had a copy of the story (not the book yet) and let me read it. 

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Beach Retreat

This past weekend I went on a Beach Retreat with the women in my church. We were on Oak Island. I've never been there before but found it to be lovely. Here are a few pictures I took while I was there.

Our Retreat theme was "Relax, Rejuvenate, Reflect and Re-connect". The setting was perfect for all of those things.

I'm still processing some of the things we explored. It was a difficult transition back to real life on Monday. Sunday was in the 60*s. Monday was cold, rainy and sleet. What a difference!

But like they say: "In like a Lion out like a Lamb".

I hope you are enjoying your March.