Tuesday, March 27, 2007

That's it. . .you are SO in timeout!!

A few weeks ago I had a much needed girls weekend. Seven of us smooshed into Suzanne's suburban and headed to KC. We went to TOFW. "Time out for women" silly. It's put together by Deseret Book and brings speakers to all parts of the country. In all honesty, I really didn't care where we were going or for what I was just happy to get away. We drove down on Friday afternoon, with plenty of Dove truffle eggs and cadbury eggs and Girl scout cookies, and Natasha even brought some goldfish (in case we missed our kids)!! I haven't laughed that much and that long for a while and it was fantastic! Here is our hotel. It was the Hotel Phillips and was nice. Even more so since Elizabeth got us a sweet deal on Priceline ($60 bucks a night--so it worked out to be like $23 per person!)Here is Karen accepting her award of sorts in the front lobby.

We did feel like the bathroom sinks looked a bit like a urinal? A marble, nice one, but still. . .don'tcha think? It was a little awkward putting your lips down by that thing to rinse out your mouth. Anywho. .

We decided to bypass the Friday night festivites and go eat and shop at the Plaza! We headed to PF Changs to get our beeper then walked the Plaza for a bit of shopping. Colleen started it. . .and it only got worse.

Mine really is the best isn't it?

MMM. WOW. We can put down some food!!

Phantom of the lettuce anyone?

It really didn't take long for us to finish it off. So we headed out for some more shopping and of course a trip to the Cheesecake Factory or Cold Stone. We finished that off at the hotel, where we laughed so hard it was a sweet ab workout.

Saturday morning we were up way to early for a girls weekendElizabeth's first (and probably last McGriddle)

and headed to the program. Colleen tried to show off (actually Karen bet her $10. . .but she still hasn't paid up. . .Karen??), by running up the down escalator. She did great until that very last step. . . and even broke her shoe (but not her pride).OUCH! This one is for Lucky Red Hen! Don't ask me why the Sherriff's cycle was in the convention center. . . it just was. . .with no one guarding it.

Ok, time to get serious.

When I walked in I realized how much I needed it. The spirit was very palpable. The host of the day was Hilary Weeks. She sang and chatted and was quite funny. One of the speakers was Stephen Robinson (author of "Believing Christ")--he spoke of grace and was very candid about struggles he has endured over the last few years. He spoke about how many members of the church work as if there is a checklist in returning to Heavenly Father. No list, however long, will get us there, and we need to quit trying to do it by ourselves. In fact there are only things that we do in order to strengthen our relationship with our Savior, who comes to "get us", and take us home.

Sherri Dew was a surprise speaker. . .she is from that area and flew in. I have no doubt that she will write a book about what she spoke to us about. She had an incident with her car where she ran over something and could not get the car to move forward. It wasn't until she backed up that she could get a clear view and move it (it was part of a street light). She related it to how many times in life we get stuck and keep trying to push forward. What we really need to do it back up from the world and get a clearer picture. Maybe you just need to try again or maybe you need a different path.

Another speaker was Sharon Larsen. She spoke of what we do when our dreams are broken. She has a "wayward" son. I hate that word but I can't think of how else to describe it so I guess that'll have to work. My favorite part of her talk is when she finally figured out that there are two types of people in the world.
1. YOU
2. the rest of the world
And guess what? The rest of the world doesn't get to decide how you react to life. We need to pay attention to who we are listening to. In talking about her son she also said that if you are feeling the shame/guilt/whatever of a child that is making bad decisions, you have to realize that their choices do NOT define YOU. They are just that-- THEIR OWN choices. They make their choices and we make our choice about how we feel and react.

The speakers were great and uplifting but this was perhaps the most uplifting part of the trip. . .

And now for my favorite speaker. . .

The first speaker of the morning was none other than Jane Clayson. She was great. She spoke of how she chose to leave TV (as a host of CBS the early show) to be a mother. She teared up a lot as she mentioned colleauges that thought she was throwing her life and career away. She was so solid in her decision and I think mostly was sad because they were unable to see how important her real JOB was. She told a story of running into a co-worker at an airport as she traveled with her 2 stepkids and her own young toddler and baby. She was as she said a little disheveled in her "mommy clothes", with no hairstylist or make up artist to aid her. He said to her "Jane? Is that you? Well. . .what are you up to these days? JUST a mom?" She said right then with more conviction than ever said, "No. I am a mother." And he got the point.

She talked about the shoes that we have to wear in life. Career shoes, Mommy shoes, wife shoes, service shoes, depressed shoes, sick shoes, hurting shoes, and sometimes you have to wear shoes that you don't like, but you're stuck in them. Enjoy the shoes that you're in, in whatever season of life you're in.

I think more than any other of the speakers, her talk hit home the most. I have found that I am struggling in my decision to be working as much as I do. I find some days that it sounds pretty good to say that I'm a faculty member at UNMC, and some days I like to go to work more than stay home (even though home is where I WANT to be--I think maybe I like to go to work because it's easier??). I've also struggled in a decision whether or not to have another baby. I think now I've found some clear answers and some miracles have fallen right in my lap to tell me, and give me what I need.


Hollie said...

Wow, how fun. We have that coming to North Carolina and a bunch of girls are going for the day. Too bad I have to get a ROOT CANAL! I am so jeleous! It looks like you guys had fun and learned a lot. I loved that bit about Jane Clayson. Also...your outfit was the best!!!

Hollie said...

jealous... I was thinking about jelly or something.

Christy said...

Dude, I'm jealous. Mainly because I would have looked wicked hot in some lingerie!

cabesh said...

Okay, so does Elizabeth sometimes go by Liz and does her last name start with C and her maiden name with H?

Queen Scarlett said...

LOVE this post. What fun! AND...uplifting too. Thank you for sharing. I love Sheri Dew and Jane Clayson...I'm going to have to get that book of hers.

...and yeah - your choice of outfit was the best. If I didn't have the post-preg hips...I'd so be in those.

wendysue said...

Hollie. . .hmm. . root canal, time out, root canal, time out. I guess as a dental hygienist I have to say you'd better get the root canal and catch them next time.

Christy. . .I kinda got in at the last moment and should have invited you and others too! (forgive me?). . .but that was also the weekend you were sick. . .and yes, I'm certain your outfit would've been AT LEAST as hot as mine!!

Cabesh--ok, that's odd. . .yes her last name is C, I'm not sure what her maiden name was and I don't know her totally well, but I've always called her Elizabeth. . . .and I can't remember where she's from, but they were in KC before they came here and her husbands name starts with M, and they're heading back to BYU for him to get his MBA (is that enough letters for us to figure this out??)

Queen--post preg hips or not, everything looks better in the dark, right??

cabesh said...

It's totally her! I worked with her, her husband and her sister at BYU. She was Liz then. I thought it looked like her, but my husband (who also worked in the same dept. didn't think so). So, I looked her up in the alumni directory and it says she lives in Lincoln, NE. It's her!
Small blogger world.:)
You can tell her that Carrie & Craig from CID say hi.

Audra said...

you guys!....

Looks like tons of fun! My mom went to that- she went last year too and she does the trip with a group of friends too! Very cool!

Bek said...

How great!! It looks like you guys had a fun weekend. I think that came to CA, but missed it.

It is always nice to go out of town w/ the gals and play. The food part of the weekend looked like enough to get me there, but the spiritual feast would have been nice too..

Jayne Clayson was in our ward in NYC before she got married and her little sister Hannah was in Derek's class (and one of the only other LDS students) at Princeton. THey are both pretty amazing people. I am so glad that she spoke. I really like her way of presenting things.

Thanks for letting us vicariously experience this with you!!

Hollie said...

You're not a loaf of bread.

compulsive writer said...


1. You look great in pink! *wink*

2. Stephen Robinson and Sheri Dew? Wow! (Steve lives in my ward. His wife is a good friend of mine. And how he has struggled. But he gets it!)

3. Good for you! Glad you had some time away and a chance to fill your own bucket!

Colleen said...

Believe it or not, Karen did pay up. She suprised me with a $20 gift card to Target with a picture of a cake on it. It was $10 for that dare and $10 for the dare to knock on the neighbors door at the hotel and ask for a tampon to sing Karoke with. It was all worth it!

Christy said...

I didn't mean for my previous comment to sound like I was upset that I wasn't invited. Because, I'm not. I mean, if you want to have a heck of a good time without me...FINE!


Deb said...

Looks like you had such a great time! And you do look the best! I love me the Sheri Dew... and eat up anything she says.

~j. said...

What a nice re-charging girls' weekend for you. Let us know if you are making any new decisions any time soon...

BinkBottInc said...

Can I go next year????

wendysue said...

Shannon. . .absolutely!!

Julie said...

Steve is amazing. As Compulsive already mentioned, he's in our ward. I took every class I could from him at BYU. He's awesome.

You got Sheri Dew too??? (pardon the rhyme) I like how she just tells it like it is.

Sounds (and looks) like you had a wonderful time. Yay for you!

"Lucky" said...

Just saw this post after Googling Lucky Red Hen. I got such a kick out of it and out of YOU! I love GNO's :)