May 1st was the annual North Webster Retreat held near the cottage. There are 20 women who meet at a church center located on Webster Lake. The facility is beautiful and the views are stunning. It is a few days of friends getting together, laughing ourselves silly and sewing like we could never sew again. This year was no different. We gathered as early as we were able to on Thursday morning and began the set up that happens each time we go. Furniture is moved making way for tables, ironing boards and sewing 'necessities'. Food is toted in as well as items for our 'dumping ground'. The saying "One man's trash is another man's treasure" fits our dumping ground perfectly. Most everything disappears gradually over the 3 days with each person thinking that they've been fortunate to either clear out some clutter or to have found a treasure!
Our group has a couple of leaders (teachers call them ringleaders!! :>) Liz makes all the plans for the retreat, brings all kinds of things for us to use and makes sure we behave. Mary and Susan keep everyone laughing and on our toes with their funny stories and banter. Joanne is just.......well, vibrant. A fun gal to keep things moving. Karlita is known for her perky bits of wisdom, usually a little tart and always funny! I could go on about all of us, the beautiful quilts and so much of each one enjoying the other's company, expertise and advice.
Our challenge this year was to be a quilt that portrays an emotion about the May Retreat. Mine was taxi-cab yellow background with a Snoopy doing a happy dance appliqued onto the yellow. I used a black with white pin dot for an inner border and the binding as well. Unfortunately, the quilt is in Chicago, I'm at the cottage and I can't find a picture of it in my computer files. I'll post it in a few days.
Everyone had wonderful challenge quilts, the talent in our group is mind-boggling!! The challenge for next year was given as well. Each person was given a wrapped book and must make a quilt from that book. I drew a Thimbleberries book which I already have, but Joanne didn't. She drew a jewel-box quilt book that I've been drooling over for a long time. Yep! you guessed it - we swapped books and now we're both happy!
My teaching session on the mitered corners and needleturn applique went well. I fully expect Rhonda and others to come next time with some show stopping projects. Hopefully I will have a few to share as well..............if the house project ever ends.
The retreat is always a wonderful time for renewal. Seeing friends, learning new tricks about quilting and comraderie that just doesn't end. The best part is that the September retreat isn't too far off and we'll get to do it all over again! Ahhhh...........a piece of quilter's heaven!