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August 29, 2015

Summer Retreat is Cool!

Embellishment 2

It is late August, which means one thing in my life… football ( or marching band) season has begun AND it is time for my Summer Scrapbook Retreat. While the crosstown football/band rivalry heated up this week, twenty seven of us gathered on Thursday and Friday to organize photos, create scrapbook pages, to relax, to catch up with friends and to eat great (and too much) meals and snacks. I hated to miss the GA/BHS Game, but was so glad to hear that GA prevailed!

Today, after much cajoling, Vivian and Neely produced a lovely pre-dinner wine cocktail with too many ingredients to name. Linda, our Honey Creek chef fed us a wonderful dinner of pork roast, meatloaf, mashed potatoes, great salad, peas and carrots. The food is always delicious, and we are all looking forward to her Fried Chicken tomorrow… of course there will be baked chicken for those who can resist, but not sure who that will be!

Earlier today, we managed to have enough dry weather to take our group photo. Here we are, 26 strong, missing one person who took a break to run down to Jacksonville for a party…

Honey Creek Summer 2015

Happily, we warmly welcomed six new scrappers to our group this summer. We hope they will join us again.

To keep up to date with news about retreats and Creative Memories products, like my Facebook page – Your Memories Simplified.

September 5, 2010

Rituals and Scrapbooking… Who Knew?

“Gather in peace, gather in thanks, gather in sympathy now and then.”

These words come from the Unitarian Universalist hymnal and were so appropriate as we came together as a community after taking our regular summer hiatus. We celebrated our first meeting of the new church year with our annual “Water Communion”. Many congregants brought water from places they visited this summer and thankfully, for those who forgot, there was some kitchen tap water provided for “representing” the water they might have brought (if they had remembered). Each person poured their water into a communal bowl.

I grew up Catholic and I love ritual. I believe these are connected, but they may just be random facts.

While ‘Water Communion” only happens once a year, there are other rituals we have which happen every time we meet.  We always share our “joys and concerns”,  lighting candles to mark each one. At the end of the sharing, there is a bowl on the altar filled with lit candles carrying our happiness, hopes, dreams and sorrows.

Today, as I sat participating in both of these rituals [by watching] I wondered why don’t I ever participate by sharing? Fear? Maybe, I’m not sure. But I do know that I love rituals.

I like yearly rituals, daily rituals, all kinds of rituals. [My morning coffee. My family’s way of saying grace. Getting a Christmas Tree. Walking my dogs each morning along the same route.]

When we fully participate (even if we ARE just “watching”) in ritual, we connect to the past, live in the present and in some way reach out to the future.

Now here is the leap, a ritual is kind of like scrapbooking, and by that, really I mean, ritual is a kind of  memory keeping. As we repeat the act, we live in the other times we’ve been a part of the ritual, who we were, where we were as humans.

When we tell our stories in photo albums, we get to live the memory again, in the light of where we are today. Sometimes it’s nice to tell the story right away, but sometimes, it is even better to have some distance, to tell the story years later. Our perspective has changed, we may be kinder to ourselves and maybe to others.

What rituals do you love? What life story to you want to relive in a photo album?

I hope you are gathering in peace, thanks and sympathy (only now and then.)