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Thread: What I learned at quilt retreat

  1. #101
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BellaBoo View Post
    I just agreed with her statement: I probably shouldn't go to any more retreats because I am an annoyance.
    That's not what it looked like you were saying. It looked like you were saying *she* shouldn't go to retreats because she was an annoyance.

  2. #102
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    Just to kind of lighten this up a bit here's a crazy thing that happened at a retreat.

    We were seated four to a table and I was at a table with someone I knew and we had two other ladies join us. One of them turned out to be a lot of fun and a really nice lady. The other one we didn't get to know since she pretty much brought her machine in and set it up and left. That was on Friday afternoon. She shows back up on late Saturday afternoon and claimed she spent the night with her husband on the lake in a bass boat in the rain. I think she actually slept at the retreat Saturday night. The group was an online email group and about a week later she started ranting and raving about how *we* had told her husband that she wasn't at the retreat. Uhhh, if you were with him at the lake wouldn't he already know you weren't at the retreat????

  3. #103
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    I had to laugh at this. It reminds me of a time a friend and I went to lunch and they sat us in the no smoking area but the only thing seperating us from the smokers was a half wall. We moved to the other side of the resturant. What is it that people to understand when you say I need non smoking because smoke sets off my asthma?
    A friend is someone who knows all about you and loves you anyway.

  4. #104
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    LOVED IT!!! I could see the people you were mentioning, they are at all retreats, I normally try to find the table out of the mainstream, and have been pretty lucky, only once caught 'stuck' at a table with a lady who brought none of the items she was supposed to bring and wanted to borrow things from me.... which I did at first but told her there is a vendor booth downstairs and maybe she should go and buy her supplies. I know I was a jerk, but didn't like having to wait to use my own supplies!
    'With God all is possible!"

  5. #105
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    My retreat is over and it was great. The sewing room is huge and we had lots of lay out space. The second day the retreat captain read the rules aloud and expected everyone to follow them. The quilter with the new to her machine borrowed a simple Janome machine from me so she could sew something. LOL.
    Got fabric?

  6. #106
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    I went to a retreat this summer with some of those same distractions esp cell phone use. I couldn't move and was stuck. I was getting pretty snarly by about the fifth call in several hours. Why come if you can't leave your life behind for a day or two!
    My worst experience has been new quilters who can't figure out their machine. At one class I finally said I wasn't feeling well, packed up and went home. There was no point being there when all I was doing was showing my neighbor how to thread, wind, stitch etc. If the teacher had not almost ignored her repeated machine problems there would not have been any instruction at all.

  7. #107
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    I have been giving some thought to going to a retreat for about six months now. Seems like I need to give it a little more thought, huh? I am a slow mover, slow thinker, slow sewer, so can't do a lot of extra distraction stuff. So what am I to do; how do you find a retreat that might serve my needs for social and learning at the same time. I have been retired and out of circulation for over ten years now, but I still love road trips. So would I get anything out of a retreat such as this? I live in middle TN, so am pretty convenient for anything in KY/TN/GA/NC/AR. Let me know, ladies. I'd love to meet y'all, and I am sure we can share and sew at the same time......I don't drink (but also don't object), my cell phone came over on the Mayflower and I use it only for emergencies, and I'll bring a sweater......
    Make every day count for something!

    JoAnn

  8. #108
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    For all the ones that have never been to a retreat - if you are given the opportunity to attend one please do so. You will most likely have a great time and meet some wonderful people. I personally believe that I can't let one bad apple spoil my life. lol
    Linda

  9. #109
    Super Member Pollytink's Avatar
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    LOL!! Bellaboo, I was afraid you'd end up out in the hall! I've never been to a quilting retreat but I can empathize with you. I did go to a freemotion quilting class a few years ago with my little beige Singer 301, in the midst of all those fancy new machines. She performed well and the teacher praised her as a great little machine for fm'ing. I haven't practiced since but I was very proud of my 301 that day!

  10. #110
    Senior Member leighway's Avatar
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    You know, this was a tricky topic. So much depends on the day, the people, the mood, the reason for the retreat. I surely sympathize with BellaBoo, as I think she was there to work and possibly have some quiet time for reflection as she worked. I would have loved to have her as a table mate. I can get very irritated by certain behaviours and yet I'm one of those who can make the room laugh. I'm a person who loves to encourage others, but I'll turn off if I hear whining. It's all in what I sense is going on with the person. I don't like bossy people (who does?) and I don't have a problem asking someone to refrain from doing something that isn't working for me. I ask with a smile but don't accept no for an answer.
    I've seen some really stupid behaviour at some of the classes I've taken, and I've also found some wonderful people whose company I loved. We humans are a study. Still and all, I"m envious of the groups that get along so well...I"ve never belonged to one and I bet they're wonderful. But I surely understand where BellaBoo is coming from.

  11. #111
    Senior Member Maire's Avatar
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    I love the sewing retreat, and yes all the things you mentioned happen, but even so they are so much fun, so newbies to retreats don't get frightened off, you'll love 99% of it.
    My biggest problem is the heat, I try to find the coldest spot in the room because some just keep pushing the heat up too high, the people quirks I can put up with but being too hot just ruins it for me. I always wear lightweight summer clothes no matter the season.

  12. #112
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jan in VA View Post
    BellaBoo,
    Can I meet you at the next retreat and be your tablemate?! We'd hit it off great! (Well as long as you bring chocolate and I bring Coke.)

    Jan in VA
    I'll bring the cookies and veggie pizza....can I join your group also?
    Loved your story. I have never been to a retreat...wish I could find the time.

  13. #113
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    I think I might have come off as being too hard nose on this subject. It's just all the retreats I've been to, over 15, have been gabfests, people walking around looking at what everyone else is working on (my favorite thing to do), sit in a group and take a break and tell stories and laugh, sit and sew for hours and talk, go on walks, groups go to new quilt shops, more talking to new people, more sewing, more visiting, more viewing what people are working on, show and tell, a little sleep, some eating and lots of talking, some walking around the place as a group and visiting, exploring the place we are staying, sewing some more and visiting.

    Get it? Mostly visiting!!!! We all sew at home by ourselves. The whole purpose of a retreat is to sew with others and to visit with others and to talk with the others and we do plenty of talking with the others. At every single retreat I've went to, there has been talking, non stop, and people tune it out easily enough and sew away or they listen and sew. But the whole reason to go to a retreat is to be with other quilters.

    Not to sit in silence! But to enjoy each other and get to know each other and make good friends and then become good friends forever. Which happens every single year. We have two retreats a year. One in the spring and one in the fall. It holds up to 25 people. We have ironing boards in closets at the retreat there, held for us. This place holds retreats for quite a few quilters and I live in the same town as where the retreat is held. I go and visit the other quilters when they are there and see what they are working on and they are just as warm and are gabbing away just like we do. So, I know they are just like us. So, I figure that's what retreats are about. A group of women quilters getting together to sew and have fun!
    Last edited by jcrow; 10-13-2012 at 06:52 AM.
    "Be yourself...everyone else is taken."
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    "Remember that your instincts are more important than rules"

  14. #114
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    jcrow, you've described what i pictured a retreat being. never been to one but it's on my list. i think it should be less formal/structured that a class would be. more emphasis on fellowship and sharing than nose to the grindstone type sewing. guess we all have different expectations

  15. #115
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    I have never been to a quilting retreat, but I have been to a sewing retreat with Sandra Betzina and Ron Collins, as well as several 3 days workshops with Ron Collins. I attended the Ron and Sandra retreat with a friend. We sat together and got along well. She was not impressed with some of the other attendees, but I met some great women and thoroughly enjoyed myself. I really enjoy meeting other women with similar interests.

    I have taken other workshops with various instructors from a local quilting store. With workshops I find that the instructor sets the tone. Jan Bones is a great instructor who keeps control of the class environment.

    I do not share my supplies. I have had to scrimp and save to buy them and cannot afford to replace them. I am willing though to show how something works and will ask others if they like their tools and notions that I have never seen before, but I would not ask to use them.

    I try to be sensitive to those around me. I can put up with just about anything except strong scents. Even scented laundry products can make me feel ill. This is my problem and has only come up once at a class. I explained that the problem was me (it was not my table mates fault I react to Tide detergent) and had to move to another table.

    I always have my cell phone with me, but on vibrate or silent. I do not take calls in the work room. One year DH called repeatedly, so I left the room and called him back. He had just got a call that his dad had cancer. We decided I would stay until the end. When I reentered the room I guess the bad news showed on my face and several asked if all was okay. I just gave a general we got bad news reply.

    Another time DH called, DD had hurt herself and had a concussion. We decided to wait for the doctor and decide if I had to return home.

    My big issue is I cannot share a bed or room at night. I do not even sleep with DH due to sleep problems. It is not that I am shy, unfriendly or snobbish. Others are welcome to join me in my room, I will share treats and drinks, but I need to sleep alone.

    I would love to go to quilting retreats to meet other quilters, so learn new techniques (most are new to me) and have some time away from my usual responsibilities.

    If you have a chance to go to a retreat, go.
    Attending University. I will graduate a year after my son and year before my daughter.

  16. #116
    Senior Member BertieD's Avatar
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    And don't you find it rude that the students are talking while the instructor is trying to instruct?

  17. #117
    Senior Member BertieD's Avatar
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    Don't stop going to retreats because you talk -- sit on someone's deaf side, lol! Seriously, lighten up people!

  18. #118
    Senior Member BertieD's Avatar
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    Yes, Cowgirlquilter, retreats really are worth it -- even considering some distractions, lol!

  19. #119
    Junior Member Raine's Avatar
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    Your funny........good for you. To bad the new machine whining, cell phone talking always cold, could not have found equal partners with the same concerns.....wonder how that would have turned out. LOL, LOL Thanks for the chuckle. Sad but true.
    Believe, it can be done!

  20. #120
    tmw
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    Quote Originally Posted by SewExtremeSeams View Post
    I read your post because it was authored by you. You know, when E F Hutton speaks everyone listens

    I just turned down a retreat: Reason being I didn't want to lug my sleeping stuff AND my quilting stuff.
    The time it takes to load at home, unload at retreat, load after retreat and unload at home... I could have had a V-8 or gotten a whole lot of sewing done. Do I sound older and getting practical in my old age. Yup! And I ain't changin'!
    this cracks me up. too funny.
    Thelma

  21. #121
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    I sure would like to attend a retreat with some of you! You all sound like such fun.

    PS Tothill: I too have to sleep alone. I sleep badly and snore badly!

  22. #122
    Super Member Bluelady's Avatar
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    I just don't go to them, for various reasons. And you just gave me a few more! Sounds like you handled it well though.

  23. #123
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    Quote Originally Posted by lisalovesquilting View Post
    Maybe harsh, maybe not. When you are sitting by someone talking non-stop it gets old real fast. One time I was a table away from a singer. I didn't want to hurt her feeling so didn't say anything, couldn't move, so suffered in silence.
    OMG... a singer... really?!?!?

    I wouldn't have anticipated that one!

    I'm headed to my first retreat this weekend - no classes - just work on whatever you want. I rarely drink - but enjoyed finding out that this group does smuggle wine into the weekend. lol

    So, I've been building my list of things to bring.

    I was already going to bring my nice pair of earbuds to listen to music or quietly watch a movie on my computer while sewing... but now, after reading your post, I'm going to bring my over-the-ear Klipsch headphones in case there is a warbler in the room.

    Listening to someone else sing would be hell in my book.

  24. #124
    Super Member Just Me...'s Avatar
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    Cell phones should be banned from retreats. Afterall, it is 'supposed' to be time to retreat away from everything. What I have learned from retreats is that I always take more to do than I could possibly finish! ROFL
    http://www.appalachianquilts.blogspot.com
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  25. #125
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    I have never been to a retreat but I have taken several day-long classes. Sometimes the things the original poster mentioned are frustrations but, I always enjoy the day and I have met some wonderful ladies! And, yes...I have had to (occasionally) change seats for some reason.

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