Parties and Events


MOMcation 2010 wrapped a week ago.  So, I’ve had a whole week to ruminate and reflect.  If you want it in a nutshell, MOMcation turned out as close to how I had imagined it as possible.  Minus the tornadoes.  But then, it’s really fitting that Mother Nature would come and show off her skills, talent, and personality at MOMcation too.  It was, after all, a retreat for every MOM.

The longer version, for those of you who like details and pictures, starts with the fact that 18 wonderful women showed up to Heifer Ranch, near Perryville Arkansas.  Some of them had friends in tow, and some of them didn’t know a soul.  We had young mothers and grandmothers, working moms and stay at homes, single, married, and things in between.  The only thing, really, that we all had in common is that we are mothers.  And that’s all we needed.  You can say in spite of, but maybe we should say because of our diversity, we meshed wonderfully.  No cliques or hurt feelings, no alienation or obnoxious-ness.  And when it was all done, the MOMcationers were feeling renewed and headed home with at least a handful of new friends.  Some moms came with trepidation, with a self-consciousness, or a pre-determined idea of who wouldn’t like them.  It was amazing to see that all fall away through the weekend, with this being the end result:

MOMcation 2010 attendees

MOMcation 2010 Attendees

As one of the event planners, I had a different perspective on the weekend.  At the outset, I was nervous too.  I wanted everyone to be comfortable and have fun, but more than that, I wanted these MOMs to learn from each other, and to see that sometimes taking time away for yourself has benefits that reach far beyond just a couple days of goofing off out in the boonies with some other women.  But as things got rolling, I quickly saw that all was well and good in the land of MOMcation.

We had tons of activities; some group oriented and some self-starting.  One of the more popular group activities was yoga.  Some of the moms were experienced in yoga, and some had never done it before, but everyone who tried it seemed to like it.

Yoga and Nap time combined - MOMs are always multitasking!

Photo Credit: Greg Benenati

There was also jewelry making, deal finding, and two great cooking sessions.

Tammy Felder teaching Bruschetta and Shrimp Bisque

Christie Ison, The Fancy Pants Foodie

We had nightly get-togethers.  One of my favorite things was getting the camp fire started with Stephanie (aka The Park Wife) sans lighter fluid…Ok, maybe she mostly started the fire, but I threw a few kindling sticks on.  We made s’mores and huddled around to tell tales of mommy life.

Photo Credit: Christie Ison

We also took a tour of Heifer Ranch and learned more about what Heifer International and the ranch itself does.  The covered hayride was both relaxing and educational. I was really impressed by the fact that many of the MOMcationers took time to explore the ranch on their own and to really think about Heifer’s mission of ending world hunger and building peace.

On the Hayride

The icing on the cake is that thanks to the four awesome members of the planning committee* and some really awesome sponsors, we were able to give away some really great stuff, including spa services, gift baskets, books, locally grown food, gym memberships, and even a couple weekend get-aways.  Overall, MOMcation 2010 was  a huge success, and there is already high demand for a MOMcation 2011.  So stay tuned for a date announcement.  If you’re on Facebook, you can “like” the MOMcation page to stay up to date.

*The four awesome members of the planning committee will be showing up in a later post, after I force them to take a group photo. But truly, I cannot say it enough times, MOMcation 2010 would not have happened without them. Thank you Valerie, Nicole, Liz, and Ashlee!

Advertisements

In case you missed it in the comments section of my Hungry Kids post, Brooke over at Parenting from Scratch tipped me off to this great event that addresses local food AND hungry kids.  Sounds like an excellent way to spend the evening.

Join the ROOT for a Friday Night Dinner on Friday, April 9th, 2010, at Christ Episcopal Church (6th and Scott in downtown Little Rock).  Enjoy a sit-down meal made from delicious local ingredients followed by a presentation from the Arkansas Rice Depot, Arkansas’ only statewide food-bank network, about their 28 years of important work combating hunger in Arkansas.

Dinner will be served at 6:30 pm.  Tickets are $12 for adults and $5 for kids.  Please RSVP to therootcafe@yahoo.com and specify meat or vegetarian option.  Five percent of ticket sales will be donated to the Arkansas Rice Depot to support their mission of finding “sensible solutions to hunger in Arkansas.”  Guests may also arrive early for an art exhibit opening and reception in the Christ Church Gallery for artist Lynn Bell starting at 5:00 pm.

If you’re a blogger, and you’re a woman, and you’re from Arkansas there’s a new group that you need to know about: Arkansas Women Bloggers!  It’s an online gathering place to make friends with other Arkansas Women Bloggers, share stories and experiences, and be inspired.  In addition to adding yourself to the list of women who are blogging in Arkansas, you can also grab the Arkansas Women Bloggers button (a great piece of bling for your blog; see mine over on the right?), plus, you can submit your favorite blog posts to be featured on the site.

Arkansas Women Bloggers is being organized by my blog buddy, The Park Wife.  I’ve met her in person, and she’s a pretty awesome gal.  We’re hoping to organize a small bloggers’ conference in the near future, so if you’re interested in that, be sure to let us know!

Heifer Ranch

As I mentioned in my last post, there have been a few things preventing me from keeping up with my blog ramblings.  One of those items is something that I am quite proud to announce here – MOMcation 2010!  MOMcation 2010 is a retreat for moms – a chance to get away from the daily grind, connect with other moms, learn a few new things, and most importantly, relax. Heifer Ranch, located near Perryville AR (about 45 min. NW of Little Rock), will be the location of the retreat. You can visit the website to learn more:

http://momcation.org

The idea started with my own MOMcations (MOM vacations).  On a MOMcation with my friend Kristen, I hatched the idea of creating a series of retreats for women and families.  Several of my friends have asked me to include them in my next MOMcation. So, MOMcation 2010 was born.  Luckily, I have a great group of moms who have volunteered to be the planning committee, and hubby has put in tons of hours to make the website functional.

I’m very excited about this new project, and hope all you mommies within traveling distance will come out and join us for a weekend of fun and relaxation.

Please welcome my first ever guest blogger, Kristen, who has come out of the kitchen long enough to tell us about a fun way to make some extra cash.

If someone told you that you have buried treasure in your house, wouldn’t you try to find it? I know I would. I’d enlist the whole family, hand them each a shovel, and tell them to get digging!

This is no fairytale: You just might be sitting on a gold mine and not even know it. The treasure I’m referring to isn’t underground and marked by a great big “X.” Instead, it’s most likely packed away in your attic, sitting among your old high school memorabilia, or stuffed in the bottom of your jewelry box. Bracelets, necklaces, rings, and watches that you haven’t worn in years could be worth a ton of money at a gold party.

I went to my first gold party completely by accident. I was at a friend’s house one night, and she said she wanted to go by her neighbor’s party for a few minutes. Since I had no idea what went on at a gold party, I was curious and went with her. One of the women who came brought a bag of gold and made several hundred dollars. She was so excited that she went back home to find more jewelry.  She returned with another full bag. That night she left with a total of $1,600 cash! After I saw that, I said, “Sign me up!” and hosted my own gold party a few weeks later.

Having a gold party was a great experience for me. If you’re interested in making a little extra moolah for the holidays and have considered hosting a party, now is the perfect time. The best part about a gold party is that no one feels pressured to buy anything. Your guests have nothing to lose and everything to gain. In fact, you can tell people to leave their checkbooks and credit cards at home. They won’t need them!

Take a look at a few more reasons why you should book a gold party:

  • Gold is VERY profitable right now. As of 11-17-09, gold sells for $1,136 an ounce. Wow. This is an ideal time to cash in on your gold jewelry while the price is high.
  • It’s an easy way to make money…and lots of it. Anyone who hosts a gold party makes 10-15% of the total amount of gold sold by those attending. For example, if all the gold sold at your party equals $1,500, you get to keep $150. Not bad just for having a few people in your home and setting out some treats. I made about $500, and I was thrilled with that amount.
  • Come and go format. People are more likely to come to your party because they don’t have to block out two hours in their extremely busy lives for it. They can pop in, sell their gold, and leave whenever they want. Or, they can enjoy a night out with friends and stay the whole time. It’s totally up to them.
  • People that can’t come can give you their gold ahead of time. This is a BIG plus. Tell your friends to collect all their gold, put it in a plastic baggie, and get it to you before the party. Most of the money that I made was through people who dropped off their jewelry in bags.
  • People MAKE money at your party, not spend it. We tend to dread invitations to most home-based parties because we feel obligated to buy something if we attend. At a gold party, there is no pressure to spend anything. You go home with more money than you came with!

If you’d like to host a party, start by finding a reputable gold buyer in your city, and get a date on the calendar. Spread the word among your family and friends. Talk it up! Then, don’t forget to search high and low for your hidden treasures that are just waiting to be found.

Kristen Feola is a freelance writer whose popular blog, thosewhohunger.blogspot.com, supports individuals and churches worldwide who are doing the Daniel Fast. She is currently working on her first book. She enjoys cooking, riding her bike, and going rock climbing in Arkansas with her family. She lives in Springfield, Missouri, with her husband and two daughters.

« Previous Page