Day 2: Baby, beauty, and building skills

Day two of our retreat!

Last night I had problems importing my pictures in… turns out I had damaged permissions that had to be repaired. So I didn’t get to post some photos from last night. Here they are.

The restaurant we ate at last night had a really cool way of serving bread. I couldn’t help but take a picture because the presentation was so cool. And the bread was delicious.

This is the view from our table. Seattle is such a beautiful place.

After trying to repair permission on my computer, I was so tired I fell asleep while my computer ran. I woke up 2 hours later and the fan was still going! So I shut it down. But, being in a new place, I dozed in and out and didn’t sleep so well.

So this morning when I woke up, it was 8:20 and I must’ve slept through my alarm, which I set for 8! Wow! I haven’t done that in years! Because I got up so late, by the time I got to the dining room, they had put the food away. I felt tired, groggy, hungry, and grumpy. I was really really grumpy. I went back to my room to pray. I still felt grumpy.

But when we went to the session, one of the girls had her baby with her and I got to hold her. She was out cold. There is something about holding a sleeping a baby that it feels like all is right with the world. My grumpiness disappeared. You really can’t bottle baby therapy. I have no desire to have any more kids but I’m just a sucker for holding babies!

I tried to take a picture of her while holding her… a bit challenging, but you can see a glimpse of her face and see why I immediately felt at peace with the world.

I needed some exercise (that pedometer sure is motivating!) so I walked around outdoors and took pictures of the beautiful landscaping. I sure miss my SLR… could’ve taken some really beautiful shots. But the iPhone camera is not too shabby!

Love this tree! Beautiful color. And it’s short too, like me.

They do a good job layering color and texture. This is cool — wispy, light leaves against dark ones with flowers.

There are a ton of places to sit and reflect and pray everywhere. This is what I miss at our church! Well, we are by a major road with lots of cars passing by. I’m guessing it wouldn’t be too peaceful to sit outside with all the traffic noise anyway. 🙂

Yesterday I forgot to take a picture of how the actual crosses looked like for the stations of the cross. So I took one today.

Well that was just a very little part of my day. Wow! I just checked my pedometer and I got in 9069 steps! Yay! I also got some extra steps in after dinner (more on that later).

The majority of the day we were in session. Today was a lot of fun. We learned about different ways to brainstorm and generate creativity. One method is called World Cafe. Another is Appreciative Inquiry. We had a taste of each and ended up with lots of big sheets of paper on the walls and windows.

Then we did an asset mapping process. We were trying to generate ideas on how to support and encourage women ministerial leaders in our denomination. There were two groups. This was from our group.

The other group was very neat and linear.

We clustered together not-so-obvious items to make new ideas.

There were some really good ideas generated! I thought it was fun to try to connect the different items together to make a new action idea.

Then we did another exercise, this time with everyone together in one group. It got a bit overwhelming — there were too many papers to look at once.

Doing these types of experiences were not only fun but quite good learning experiences. I learned all sorts of stuff about creativity, process, and applications to my ministry.

After that, it was time for dinner. When we were waiting out in the parking lot, we discovered that our group apparently got two memos. Half of us got the memo to wear black/dark colors.

The other half got the memo to wear green. Even the baby got the memo.

We went to another restaurant by the water. This one was soooo cheap compared to yesterday. For $18.50, I got a shrimp cocktail appetizer, bowl of clam chowder, beef kabobs, coconut shrimp, almond buttered rice and creme brulee. Everything was totally delicious and the dinner was huge. I was totally impressed. And the view was very serene.

However, the baby was a bit fussy. Poor thing was uncomfortable. Different people held her and then I took her — and she stopped crying! Not that I did anything, but it was so nice to hold her and walk around. Then she gave a big burp. That’s probably what was bothering her. And I got in a ton of steps from walking back and forth in the lobby for quite a while until my arms gave out (out of practice — I haven’t done this in a long time!). It was a great way to end a very good day.

Oh, but once again my absentmindedness caught up with me. As we were waiting in the lobby to leave the restaurant (waiting for the baby), a waiter came out and said, “Did anyone leave a scarf?” Oops. I’m really glad I didn’t lose that scarf, since I knitted it! Once again, saved by the baby!

We had a very fun dinner together, lots of good discussions. I am sad this cohort is ending! What a great group of women, and what I have learned has been a huge impact.

I also had the realization that God provides in wonderful ways. Our church has had a spending freeze most of the year due to the economy, which means I can’t attend conferences, buy books for development, etc. It’s such a major bummer because growth, learning and development is not only important to me but also makes a huge difference in ministry. But it just so happened that this year, I was invited to join this cohort! The Lord is amazing in how He provides!

A Yee

Angela Yee is a professional designer (graphic design, stage design, interior design — and teaches leadership skills at

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  1. Glen Nielsen - April 15, 2010

    What an honor to have been selected for this! Sounds like it was a conference, retreat, therapy session, & spiritual getaway all rolled into one … man, i’m jealous …

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