A friend asked if I was exhausted at the end of the conference on Saturday. I reflected a moment and then decided. No. Not exhausted.
Nourished. Refreshed. Peaceful.
Two days with my friends Jessye and Pam. Two days of excellent, enriching (and hilarious) conversation. Two days of inspiration.
Two days without cooking, cleaning, or parenting. Two days without responsibilities other than driving. Two days without looking at a messy house or a to-do list. A decent night’s sleep in the hotel (after hardly sleeping at home the night before).
The drive was uneventful (even with President Obama in Portland, we did not hit heavy traffic on 205). The weather was beautiful (unlike our drive to Medford last year in torrential rain or our last drive to Washington in a snow storm). Our schedule had plenty of breathing-room both days. We found our hotel and the beautiful venue easily. No mishaps or stresses.
And now I’ve had a chance to meet Sarah Mackenzie in person (she’s even more delightful in real life, if that’s possible). I had a chance to meet and chat briefly with Adam Andrews and his wife Missy, which was an unexpected treat (Adam Andrews has been on my hope-to-meet list!).
I met a few blog readers (hi, new friends!!).
I listened to Andrew Kern, Sarah Mackenzie (twice), Greg Wolfe, Tim McIntosh, and David Hicks speak. So much grace and humor, intelligence and insight. All talks met and exceeded my expectations.
By the time I arrived home late Saturday evening, I was refreshed and ready to see my kids and spend Mother’s Day snuggling with them!
[Russ was with one of his swimmers at a camp at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado. He left insanely early on Thursday and will return later this afternoon. My niece Ilex was so kind to watch the kids overnight while I was gone.]
I had packed my big camera, but didn’t even take it in to the conference. Can you believe that?! I snapped a picture of the Q&A panel at the end of the second day and my friend Jessye took a picture of me with Sarah and Adam, but my phone doesn’t take high quality pictures (obviously). I shamelessly snagged the picture Sarah posted of us together. Maybe the blurry picture is a more accurate depiction of how I looked by Saturday afternoon. Ha! I’m very disappointed that I didn’t get a picture of Jessye, Pam, and myself together.
I will try to distill a few things I learned and share them this week.