Tuesday, March 3, 2009

2nd Annual Young Professionals' Retreat

For the second year in a row, our Young Professionals group at church spent a weekend together in the mountains of Pigeon Forge, TN. We used this time to grow deeper bonds with one another, as well as grow closer to our Lord. Nothing accomplishes these two goals better than sharing a cabin with 50 other peers on the top of one of God's glorious creations.

We enjoyed group devotionals and heartfelt singing along with three different sessions led by our guest speaker, Mike Wamble. After each lesson, we separated into six different small groups to further discuss the weekend's focus: the life lessons found within the book of James. We spent our spare time hanging out and playing board and card games. While each couple was able to enjoy their own private room in the lodge, most of us took the opportunity to hang out with the girls (or guys) during our free time. We, girls, had a flashback to our junior high sleep overs as we gathered together on a bed in our pj's and talked about boys (aka, our husbands). All of the men bonded over making fun of our squeals and giggles. What great memories...

Saturday afternoon's schedule was left open for us to utilize some free time in the Smokies however we wanted. Many people went to a shooting range (random) and a lot of people went shopping at the outlet stores. Despite the drizzly weather, Brad and I joined a group that walked around downtown Gatlinburg, being authentic tourists. We took tons of pictures, spun the 10,518 pound granite ball that floats atop 1/254 of an inch of water sitting outside of the Ripley's Believe It or Not museum, and visited many of the little shops. Brad and I even got a Mehaffey sign to go on our new front porch. Thanks to Gatlinburg, we're officially a real family, now!
And don't worry. We didn't pass up a single opportunity to enjoy the completely unhealthy food. We found this glorious place called Fannie Farkles that made foot long corn dogs! I couldn't imagine anything more divine. I sincerely attempted to eat the whole thing, but just as I was getting to the end of my endurance, I took a bite that revealed a-whole-nother hot dog within! At that point, I handed it over to my husband and let him finish it off, even though he had already eaten a donut from The Donut Friar. Shortly after the corn dog incident, we came across The Funnel Cake. You wouldn't believe the plethora of varieties of funnel cakes they offered! Brad and I easily agreed on the cinnamon glazed one, and watched in delight as The Funnel Man poured icing over an already cinnamon sprinkled bundle of fried dough. Needless to say, our tummies were much too full to consume the (free) lasagna that was prepared for us back at the lodge that evening. Hindsight is 20/20. (But we still wouldn't have changed a thing!)

The retreat was a great weekend spent with great friends. Here is a picture of the girls as we randomly gathered in a doorway for a group shot.
And here are the boys that didn't want to be left out.

Yea for friends!

After we checked out of the cabin on Sunday, Brad and I went with Aaron and Erin back to Gatlinburg to take advantage of some real mountain pancakes. There were no less than 50 different pancake places to choose from, and we settled upon Flapjack's Pancake Cabin. Boy, did we make the right decision! This breakfast was dee-licious! And Brad thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to drink out of a genuine Mason jar. Right as we were heading back to the mid state, with syrup on our tongues, snow started to fall all around us. Could there be any better ending to a great weekend of friends and fellowship?

To view the condensed and narrated photo albums on facebook, click here and here. To view the unabridged photo album, click here.


Erin Howell said...

YAY! What good times. Aaron and I really enjoyed Flapjacks.. Aaron probably more so than me. :)

Sasha said...

Love the 3 column blog and I think your retreat sounds awesome!! We need to do that in our YP class at Henderson!

Anonymous said...

Mindy it sounds like you had a great time and I was so excited to hear about your weekend! I totally love the sign You and Brad bought and know you will cherish it for years to come.

Mark - (from Mich)

Related Posts with Thumbnails