It's Saturday and I have a few moments of downtime (both small miracles!) which mean one thing: It's time for the Week In Review! (And, yeah, it's been two weeks again, but who's counting?)
- The most exciting thing that happened last week was that all of us USC volunteers were scheduled for a retreat in the mountains. It might surprise you to hear it, but...we were not excited. It was going to include a 3 hour drive (which turned into 4), meant leaving at 8am, and even though it included taking Friday off work, we were sure it would include non-stop programing from our directors.
- We grumpily packed our bags, got in our cars and proceeded to have a wonderful, relaxing weekend.
- It was beautiful! This Texas girl still gets very amazed by the mountains. Aspen trees are also turning into my very favorite trees.
- The only downfall of the retreat was the fact that one of our fellow volunteers got sick during the first night. Poor her, we thought.
- We came home and, one after the other, all got sick. 9 out of the 10 of my housemates (myself very much included) got the stomach flu.
- I continue to love my new room. I'll try to remember to take a couple of pictures sometime (now that I finally have pictures hung up!).
- I have an entire wall of bookshelves--which normally would make me swoon. I still like them, but it also makes me a bit sad because I got rid of, gave away or packed up all but about 20 books.
- The weather here has been very bi-polar. Everyone told me that it would get hot/cold/hot/cold here, but I wasn't expecting all of those things to happen during the same day. It's also true that the sun is very hot here--even when it's cold out, if you find a spot of sun to stand in, you'll be ok.
- Many afternoons around the church office it is just the secretary, the sexton (janitor/groundskeeper) and myself. They are both at least 40 years my senior, but the bright spot in some of my afternoons is when the three of us all sit on the same bench in our courtyard taking a smoke, coffee, and sun break (respectively).
- Friday afternoon, when I was hoping to catch up on office work at the church, my plans were distracted by a good ol' fashioned chickin' pickin' party. A group of Methodist women wanted to come by and help prepare food for our Monday feedings. Several tons of chicken had been cooked previously in the week and these women came by to pick it all off the bone and chop it up. Somehow they even pulled our famously grumpy music minister out of his office to play old hymns while we worked.
- I finally got to see Stacey and Brad this week for the first time since my move in day. David and I went over for dinner--and it's amazing how quiet and homey it feels to eat dinner with only 3 other people after a couple of months in my house. It's also so fun to have old friends in town--especially when they are as hilarious as these two.
- November is coming! Who knows what that means? I'm getting ready to get my NaNoWriMo on!
OK, pictures--mostly from the retreat:
A shot from the drive up. It rained on us most of the drive through the mountains, which had me a bit stressed, but, when the clouds rolled out, it was beautiful.
Right before this we saw two elk (?). One of which ran in front of a truck then clothes-lined itself on a fence wire. Ouff.
Rainbow Trail Lutheran Encampment
Unlimited hot tea, a porch swing, Aspens and a view of the mountains--It was a good moment
I stayed a optional second night. That meant I had Saturday evening and all of Sunday to do with as I pleased. I took a solitary walk..
found a stream...
and an Aspen grove...
found a chair...
And actually read (imagine that!) for a while. I get so little time to read anymore (or, you know, would just always rather sleep) that I gave up on the novel I was reading in favor of rereading some of my favorite short stories.
Sunday was a completely beautiful day. I soaked up some sunshine...
read Phillipians by a noisy stream...
And then walked a labryinth (which I had been wanting to do for a while now!).
A beautiful weekend! Even if it did get us all sick...! : )