Every January I take a break from the snowy weather here is southeastern Michigan and go to a quilting retreat for the weekend. I really do not get away from the snowy weather as the retreat is in Fremont Ohio at the Our Lady of the Pines Retreat Center and it is still snowy there too but at least I do not have to go outside and shovel the white stuff. This year I had a tag along, Little Quilt Block. Here he is arriving at the retreat. I did pretty good this year on my packing. I was able to get all of my supplies besides my two sewing machines and my notion bag in my red wagon. Yes I take two machines, you just never know when one of them will decide to have issues.
This is a wonderful old building full of lots of little rooms to sneak away to for a little quiet time or to lay out a quilt where no one will be walking on it. Here is a quick history of the center.
1874 ~ The main building was built as a Mansion by Lewis Leppleman, a wealthy local jeweler
1890 ~ Purchased by Charles Green, a gold miner and prospecto
1925 ~ The Sisters of Mercy purchased the 63 acre estate from the Green Family for $50,000 and added on to the original home
1926-1936 ~ Sisters of Mercy Novitiate
1931 ~ First retreat is open to the general public
1941-1960 ~ Mother of Mercy Academy for Girls
1943 ~ Fire destroyed third floor of the building
1960 ~ Present – Full time retreat center
2009 ~ Facility renovated and reopened with extensive conferencing and retreat capacity
At this retreat we always have a garage sale of miscellaneous quilting and sewing items for sale. Little Quilt Block quickly joined in the festivities and went shopping. Here he is checking out what was for sale. He found all kinds of fabric, patterns and books to choose from.
While the staff at the retreat center took care of preparing our meals and cleaning up after them what quilting get together would be complete with out snacks? We had everything from healthier choices of fruit and pretzels to chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate. Of course Little Quilt Block had to check out the snacks to see what looked good.
Now retreats are not always all play. I usually try to take time out for some walking exercise. While the grounds where the retreat center is at are beautiful this was January and I am not a cold weather walker. So I take an hour or so a couple of times during the weekend and walk the halls both upstairs where the rooms are and downstairs where our main sewing room is located. Little Quilt Block was good too and ventured into the basement to see what the exercise room there looked like. I caught him working out on a stepper machine.
But after a good workout Little Quilt Block got a great reward. A massage! Now this was the first year I have taken time out of my sewing time for a massage. Boy was it worth the time away from the machine. I had mine in the afternoon on the second day and I felt so rejuvenated afterwards. I was raring and ready to go late into the night.
Of course Little Quilt Block made the rounds to all of the tables to see what projects everyone was working on. He made some new friends while he was there. Here he is in the middle of the action at this table of five quilters. These ladies meant business they all had extra tables at their sides for pressing.
He made friends with another quilt block at the next table. Looks like all kinds of quilting fun was going at this table if all the fabric and the pile of quilt blocks is a good indication.
And here at this last table he made two more friends. These two gals are also inspiring us at the retreat as the spend part of their time making things for different charities.
Little Quilt Block had fun at his first quilting retreat. If anyone is going to another retreat he would love to tag along with you too. Just send me an email and we will see if we can work out a sleep over for him. Or if there is anywhere interesting that you are headed to let me know and we will see if he can come along with you.
Have a creative day!