September 15, 2009

Sandy Island Part 3: Day by Day

Our days started early (6 am - the usual). At home the mornings start in the comfort of the babies' room where we dress them, and feed them, & play until their first naptime. At Sandy Island, it was too cold to stay in the cabin, so we would gather all of our gear and walk to the dining hall to feed the babies by the fire. These mornings were the best. Talking with the staff (who were there earlier than us every morning except the first), greeting fellow Westgaters as they arrived for breakfast, and enjoying the warmth of the fire in the large room after a cold night in our little cabin. What a great way to start the day!

Carting the sheets to each cabin to make beds

The first day (Friday) we were actually there before the majority of people attending the retreat. Lucas is on the planning committee, and the members go early to prepare the cabins (make beds, clean up, and leave goodies like bottles of water and mints on the pillow). So the first day was basically free time. I hung out with the babies in the morning, and let me tell you, there is nothing more restful than sleeping babies and nothing to do! While the babies napped I sat on the porch and looked out over the lake enjoying being still & quiet - no dishes or laundry to do. I cherished this blessed time of relaxation & reflection.

Lucas relaxing & looking out at the lake on our front porch.

Later we borrowed a couple of the jogging strollers they have on the Island and took the babies for a walk. It turns out that Allie isn't super into bumpy rides...At the end of the day, people started to arrive, and we enjoyed greeting our friends as they came. The excitement was building. We had hoped to take turns hanging out at the social snack time in the evening, but we were so exhausted from the lack of sleep the night before (as mentioned in the previous post) that we crashed early.

Riding in style!

Saturday I was in the nursery during the first session & Lucas was with the youth. The nursery was a fun challenge. I learned that 2 are all I can handle! Even with help, 5 babies were overwhelming - especilly when 4 out of the 5 were crying! Unfortunately, this was the twins naptime, and they weren't able to sleep - which led to a rough rest of the day. In the afternoon, the twins attended their first Sandy Island canoe race. The canoe race is a cherished Sandy Island tradition - so much so that it was not cancelled despite the pouring rain!

The twins went to bed early, and Lucas and I went to the talent show (watching from the porch since our monitor wasn't working inside) - another time-honored SI tradition. Cuddling with Lucas on the porch (to stay warm) watching the talent show was another favorite memory from SI 2009.

Sunday was a bit of a blur. The day was basically spent feeding twins and packing up. Our things had to be packed up to be picked up and taken to the dock by 9:15, but we didn't leave until 1:30 - which meant mama had to do some organizing to make sure we had everything we needed, but only what we needed. We did somehow manage to get in a few good conversations and enjoy the warm, sunny weather (the first since we had arrived!).

Our family at Sandy Island 2009

Despite the difficult moments, we had a really wonderful time, and are so thankful for the time there. The first, cold night the weekend stretched out unendingly before us, and I wondered if we made it. Then, somehow, it was time for us to rush to the dock to meet our boat.


Anonymous said...

Is the room with the fireplace like a big room for everyone to visit and gather in? It looks like a nice place. Love the fact that the twins are little troopers and can adapt well. Hugs & Kisses are awaiting you all. Nana

Kim said...

The fireplace was in the main lodge. This was the main meeting place - a large, open room with a stage. Outside there was a long porch that looked out over the water (which is where we watched the canoe race since it was raining). The lodge is where we had the teaching times and talent show. The other large gathering place was the dining hall.

the monkey's mama said...

I loved reading about your adventures. I am sooo super sad that we are missing out on your kiddos lives...and yours, too. It is so surreal for me to read about them growing up when I haven't even met them! This must change :)