I came home from the Savannah trip and went FULL swing into retreat preparation! This was our second year to put together an in-house retreat for our Worship & Arts ministry at the church. We have so many different "arms' to our ministry - choir, praise team, band, orchestra, AVL, KidShape choir directors - it's a great opportunity to bring EVERYONE together for a time of spiritual refreshment, fellowship, training, hearing new upcoming music - and of course some food! :)
I felt more responsibility this year. David's secretary is still out on maternity leave, so I felt a little more responsibility as I helped Alli know what to expect and how to prepare. I was in charge of the food and the arrangements for the kids. We do the weekend for FREE for participants, so to keep costs down, I do most of the food myself so we don't have to pay a caterer. I also like to have a detailed schedule of activities, crafts, games and things for the childcare workers - because that's a LONG time for the kids to be at church too! It was a LOT of planning, cooking, preparing, but it all came together so well!
Friday night I did mexican for dinner for 80! :)
Shredded chicken tacos
Homemade pico de gallo & guacamole (thanks Pioneer Woman - did her recipe x15!)
All the fixings
The BEST cornbread ever!
Was so good just to fellowship with everyone!
(Like the tables? Ugh. Found out an hour before everyone arrived that the maintenance guy had set up the WRONG round tables...he set up these ugly ones that the church had rented for another function going on that Sunday night instead of the white vinyl topped ones. And of course no time to buy tableclothes, so this is what they were! Gotta focus on the major things, right? :)
I was also in charge of games this year. Our only complaint last year was that we needed MORE time for fun and fellowship. So since I have a FABULOUS event planner in the family, Kelli gave us some awesome games that we had a bunch of fun with. This one was the "javelin throw" - we wrapped 4 guys up in duct tape (sticky side OUT) and then a few of their teammates had to blow qtips at them thru a straw - whoever had the most to stick, won! :)
The kids had a GREAT time too. I scheduled their time in 30 minute increments and they had a ton of fun activities and crafts as well as some of the Minute to Win It games that we did. They LOVED it - which was a relief to all of us parents!
We were encouraged and reminded of how AWESOME our God is as we listened to three of Louie Giglio's sessions - "How Great is Our God", "Indescribable", and "Symphony" and reminded of the majesty of creation that is all around us. So incredible.
The little kids' room. I set up my pack&play in the office right next door and was able to put Judah down for his naps in there. It was definitely a little extra crazy to have to run back and forth between retreat stuff and nursing a baby, but it worked!
Another super fun game - "Suck it Up". Told them it was to improve their breath support for singing! :) Moved m&ms from one plate to another relay style.
Hello Bingo game - always a hit.
There were also opportunities for people to attend different workshops taught on a variety of subjects - I taught 2 on sightreading basics and 1 on "Not Too Young to Worship" - about getting kids involved at an early age. There were workshops about music/missions, stage presence, vocal training, worshipping in brokenness, The Old Testament and Worship, AVL training, video production, Spiritual Themes in Broadway productions - all kinds of things! It was great.
Everything went so well. It was such precious time to be together with the wonderful people that make up the Worship & Arts ministry at Northside. The thing about our ministry is that Sunday is ALWAYS coming. So we rarely have "down time" where we get to stop and refocus and recharge - because Sunday is always coming that we have to be prepared and ready for. So this weekend was a great time for us to do that! We are blessed to be surrounded by these amazing people!