Monday, February 18, 2008

What a WONDERFUL weekend!!!!

We had an absolutely wonderful time this past weekend at one of our favorite spots on earth!

We all spent the weekend at our church's Family Life Retreat, an annual getaway we have every February with a bunch of friends from church. We all--adults, youth, and children--have three sessions on some Biblical topic (this year it was "Living your Life with Passion" and what an incredible message and reminder it was to let my love for Christ extend beyond my life and to everything around me!); we have great music and an always-moving communion time; and in between the spiritual times, we have a ton of free time and fun activities. We play games (yes, I beat everyone at Scrabble! lol); sit around the fireplace and talk with friends; play at the playground; walk up the mountain; and participate in Skit Night (there are no pictures here of that yet, but I promise to get them from Gary and uploaded; let me just say that Sydney decided to do a "karate jump" skit and it was absolutely the hit of the night! too cute!).

We had a great time and we took a ton of pictures, so I thought I'd share a few with you (this, today, really is Photo Overload!).

The weekend is full of FUN!!! Here's Sydney having some fun at the playground!

We had to take at least one group shot while we were there! Can you find all of us? (lol)

We always spend a lot of time outdoors! The scenery is absolutely GORGEOUS! There are giant rocks and streams and trees and trails and lakes and secret hidden spots, and more that you can discover every time you go!

I just LOVE this series of pictures! Sydney became infatuated with tossing leaves into the stream and seeing how far they would float. (It is awesome to see your child enjoying nature. We ALL need to that much more often!)

The weekend always involves a hike up to the top of the mountain. You have to hike up to the chapel and then the cross (which lights up at night). It's a hard walk and this year Gary was the parent who made the trek (my excuse, which was a legitimate one (I promise!) was that Sydney would have ended up begging us to carry her once the walk gets tiresome. So she and I drove up the mountain and met Gary and the girls and some more of the crew.

Here are some shots going up the mountain and then at the top.

This is truly God's county (McKenna swears she's getting married someday up here on the top of the mountain). Is there any way you can NOT feel refreshed after seeing this sort of view?

(And on a totally different note, join me in wishing my AWESOME Dad a wonderfully

Happy BIRTHDAY!!!!!!

He is the best father in the world and I hope he has a great day!!)

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend as well!! I will spend a ton of time today unpacking and washing clothes; spending time with the girls (they are out for President's Day); and generally trying to get rested up from all the weekend excitement. But I will try and also make some time (I promise!) to come around and visit you all in your part of the world. See ya soon!!


Dawn Bibbs said...

Hi Cheryl. I am so glad you guys had a good time over the weekend. I remember when we were considered "young marrieds" :-), we'd go on trips like that with our SS class. We had a ball. But I guess, now that we're "married adults", we don't do that kinda stuff anymore :-(.

I love the pictures you took. And I must say, I was shocked to see Scout in pants :-).

Again, glad ya'll had a great, memorable time and that you got there/back safely.

Enjoy your week.

Adrienne said...

Glad you guys had a great time!

Jenster said...

Looks and sounds like a fabulous time! Refreshing and renewing! :o)

Life with Two Boys and a Husband said...

Awwww! It looks like you guys had so much fun at camp! I hate it that we couldn't go this year. Hopefully next year we will be there. I love the group photo of everyone.

Auburn Kat said...

I was thinking about you and your family with all of that bad weather in your state.

It sounds like you had a wonderful time. The pictures are amazing. I think I'm in need of a retreat like that!

Lynilu said...

A beautiful spot! No wonder McKenna wants to be married there! It's nearly as pretty as what I wake up to every morning! :D

Cheryl said...

That looks like soooo much fun. It is great to get-away and enjoy nature. It makes you feel closer to God. The pictures were so good. I really enjoyed them! Glad you had a good time.

Katrin said...

Wow, that sounds like a really wonderful weekend, I wish I could've joined you all. I love mountains (it's where I grew up). The chapel looks absolutely gorgeous, I would like to get married there, too!!
Happy Birthday to your Dad!

Patti said...


and it looks like a wonderful, fantabulous week-end! Beautiful physically as well as spiritually.

Frasypoo said...

That looks so familiar.Is it in North Carolina ?On Standin Indian?
If its not,I swear it looks the same.My mother-in-law goes camping there twice a year
I love the mountains...there is something about the beauty of it all

Linda said...

wow, love all those pics, especially the one at the top of the hill....I like those pics of sydney too...even though she isn't wearing a dress...OMG is this the first time I've seen her in a pic with pants on.....??? So glad you had a fantastic weekend, sounds just wonderful.

Phats said...

Typically these kind of weekends are the ones that go too fast! The ones you look forward too and have a blast while they are happening. Looks like a great time and that you got some great pictures!

I have a favor I am asking of all my blog buddies for Tuesday on my new post! i know you'll do it!! :)

Adriann said...

Wow! Sounds and look like a fabulous weekend. Hubby and I went away for some much needed R&R.

Loreluca said...

WOWSERS, Cheryl! It has to be such an incredible experience to participate with your family in a spiritual retreat. I REALLY have to look into this... maybe there is one near us!
Thnaks for the idea again. And happy b-day, Cheryl's dad!

Delia said...

Happy Birthday Cheryl's Dad!!

I love the pictures of Sydney beside the stream!

Mississippi Songbird said...

What wonderful pictures. I can tell you all really enjoyed the retreat. I would love to do that with my church. I can't ever seem to be able to take off work long enough.Most of the retreats that our church goes on are for an entire week, and I just can't leave for that long, not with my husband on the road all the time. Thanks for sharing the great time you all had.. Have a great week..

camport said...

I wanna go for a hike! These pics make me think of home{SC} as a hike here would look nothing like that. It would be more dirt-y and cactus-y.

Glad you guy had a blast!


Edleen said...

a Wonderful Weekend indeed! great shots, everyone smiling and Happy! :)

and Happy Birthday to your Dad!

Sheila said...

Wow!! spiritual retreat and it looks like you all had a beautiful time.. the pics are amazing. Thanks for sharing.

Ms.L said...

Oooh how beautiful! I'm glad you had a great time. It sounds like the best weekend ever:)

NancyJones said...

OHHHHHH I LOVEEE these photos girl looks like you all had a wonderful tme. I LOVED going on these retreats when I was a kid. I hope Bella will like them as much as I did.