Thursday, March 4, 2010

motherhood retreat

I spent much of last weekend here:
(thanks to Dave for earning "best-dad-of-the-year" for getting the kids to and from all the places they needed to be with the help of some sweet friends)

...with these wonderful girls:...gabbing with them about motherhood for hours on end.

Seriously, I think every mom needs to do this. I think a Motherhood Retreat is kinda like getting your very own personal "instruction manual" on Mothering. You know how you have an instruction booklet for everything you get? From a juicer to a computer? My new camera instruction manual is like 131 pages for crying out loud! (I just guessed on that, but you get what I mean.)

But no, we have no fool-proof instruction manual for raising these beauties we are so blessed with, and they're the most important and confusing things we'll ever have in our care. We struggle through trial and error to figure out the best way to raise them. We do our best to consult with our spouse or our friends in little snippets of time we snatch here and there between carpools and practicing and falling into bed completely exhausted at the end of the day. And sometimes we're at our wit's end and we need to revamp. That's where Motherhood Retreats come in.

Let me back up a little bit here and explain how this all came about.

My sister Saren (the "Power of Moms" one) came up with the idea to have "Motherhood Retreats" years ago. It's something where a group of committed mothers get together and discuss as much as they possibly can cram into a couple days. Many of the mothers have a chance to present ideas on something they've learned or studied out. Everything from how to help your children learn the joy of giving to how to take care of yourself amidst the mayhem, to how to embrace a difficult child. (This one even had a marriage panel.) Essentially you have a chance to sort of reinvent your mothering plan. I mean, isn't it true that you need a business plan for being a mother just like you do to run a business? I totally believe that.

So, per Saren's request we gathered together five years ago (my sisters and I plus a few of Saren's friends each invited a couple more friends), and she and her friend spearheaded the first retreat:We came away inspired and rejuvenated. Saren encouraged us all to start our own deal where we lived.

Well, two of the girls took her idea to heart and this last weekend was their third retreat. They, along with those they gathered have such bright, stimulating ideas.

Lucky for me this retreat they planned happened to be close to where we live so they invited me to come. I even got to speak about being your own best kind of mom.

And let me tell you, I came away so inspired by these wonderful women.

And it doesn't hurt to get to meet in a place like this to help you feel rejuvenated when you're done:
(thank you "G" family!)BUT, you don't need to have a place like this...and it doesn't have to be anything fancy at all. If you want to find out how to host your own Motherhood Retreat click here (Power of Moms). Saren and her friend April have all kinds of great ideas to get you going. Sometimes you just need to step back to figure out to move forward as the best mother you can be. And boy howdy this is a good way to do it!

I have notes galore and many ideas I've already implemented that I need to share.

But that'll have to wait since I must go.

Thank you, thank you girls for such a great time.

Love, Shawni
p.s. Remember to join me & my mom as well as the American Mothers people at Poppy's tomorrow if you're local!

10 comments:

  1. Oh that is so not fair. I'm loving this idea. Is that someones house? I thought it was a spa. Wow!

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  2. THIS IS SO AWESOME.

    I SO NEED SOMETHING LIKE THIS SEEING AS THAT, RIGHT NOW, I AM TRYING TO FIND THE QUICKEST WAY TO SELL MY CHILD ON EBAY. OK ONLY ONE OF MY CHILDREN, THAT IS. MAYBE A MOM'S RETREAT IS JUST WHAT I NEED! EITHER THAT A WEEK ON BEACH WITHOUT KIDS!!!

    YOU ARE SO INSPIRING!

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  3. This sounds wonderful- what a great idea!

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  4. How Amazing, I would love to see your notes on this!

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  5. Motherhood Retreat sounds like it would come in 2nd place behind my personal dream: send EVERYONE in my home AWAY for at least a week and leave ME home ALONE! It's my dream vacation, to send everyone else on vacation and have a week to clean, organize, work, read, sleep, etc. without people following me from room to room to UNDO what I just did. Can you imagine the quiet? (sigh)

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  6. I so need to organize one! I have thought about how great it would be to have something like this to share the reality, the hard times and joys of motherhood!

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  7. You did great today!!! Good luck on the walk tomorrow...

    Jennie N.

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  8. What a nice post! We loved having you join our retreat! Your talk and comments were awesome and I've been asking myself daily, "would my BEST MOM do that???"! Thanks again for coming and sharing and inspiring me to be better!

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  9. I know the G's!!!
    What an awesome idea.
    Seriously Shawni, where do you find the time to do all that you do????

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  10. What a great idea Saren had! There's nothing like a groups of committed, creative mothers who are also great friends, giving each other inspiring ideas to change the world...one child and one day at a time! Love it!

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