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nancyhoites@yahoo.com
New Pal

32 Posts

Posted - 03/16/2006 :  08:28:09 AM  Show Profile Send nancyhoites@yahoo.com a Private Message
After giving thought to Clara's review of her experience at the retreat, it seemed that many of the women who attended (piano professors, 2nd-grade teachers, mystery novelists, information technology professionals, literary agents, acquisitions editors, and humble knitting publishers, etc.) were able to afford the cost while women who aren't well-placed financially and are unable to afford it may well be the ones who would receive the most value from attending a knitting/meditative/yogic retreat.

Clara
queen bee

USA
4406 Posts

Posted - 03/16/2006 :  08:47:37 AM  Show Profile  Visit Clara's Homepage Send Clara a Private Message
Um... the job titles may sound exotic but nobody there was what I'd call extravagantly wealthy. I mentioned the people who were employed in some capacity, but very few elementary school teachers, writers, acquisitions editors, or publishers of multi-hundred-dollar free online knitting magazines life a particularly posh life. It was my sense that most of the people had been saving for quite a while to come to this event, because it really mattered to them.

Fortunately most towns have meditation and yoga facilities that don't require the cost of a long weekend stay somewhere, and libraries have Tara's book -- so you could always craft a restful and personally meaningful retreat for yourself at very, very low cost.

Clara
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RoseByAny
Permanent Resident

USA
12598 Posts

Posted - 03/16/2006 :  08:59:26 AM  Show Profile  Visit RoseByAny's Homepage Send RoseByAny a Private Message
Interesting interpretation, Nancy, but I can assure you writers (yes, I have friends who do that for a living), piano professors (blood relatives who do that), teachers (more relatives) and even humble knitting publishers don't earn particularly high income. It's not as though they're sitting on yachts being fed truffles by their overpaid staff of thousands while they knit cashmere/gold blend bikinis (well, maybe the knitting publishers are...)

Actually, when I saw the list of professions, I thought it was interesting that so many were based in creative or artistic endeavors, and carry that passion over into their knitting as well.

"Choose your friends by their character and your socks by their color. Choosing your socks by their character makes no sense, and choosing your friends by their color is unthinkable."
http://RoseByAny.BlogSpot.Com
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BessH
Permanent Resident

3095 Posts

Posted - 03/16/2006 :  11:59:59 AM  Show Profile  Visit BessH's Homepage Send BessH a Private Message
Funny idea, that someone might benefit more from an expereince than another, based upon her income. I should think she who was the most open would benefit the most.

That being said - wouldn't it be wonderful if financialy strapped knitters had a scholarship fund for attending blissful events that fed their spirituality. Sigh. When I win the lottery I believe I shall set up an endowment.

Bess
http://likethequeen.blogspot.com
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Clara
queen bee

USA
4406 Posts

Posted - 03/16/2006 :  12:25:58 PM  Show Profile  Visit Clara's Homepage Send Clara a Private Message
From my yacht I tip a chocolate truffle to you, Bess! I know many events do have a scholarship or some sort of sliding scale set up, even if it's not made tremendously public. But I agree it'd be a beautiful world if we had more of that. And after some thought, I have to agree that in an ideal world, the contents of our checking accounts wouldn't dictate whether or not we deserve some TLC.

But Nancy, I hope you understand where my comments are coming from. I don't mean to belittle your viewpoint or perspective -- just clarify just what the reality really was at this event.

Clara
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Rho
Permanent Resident

1570 Posts

Posted - 03/16/2006 :  12:37:09 PM  Show Profile  Visit Rho's Homepage Send Rho a Private Message
I was thinking as I was reading the article that I wonder how hard it would be to get together something like that in your own area.... everyone (well everyone I know) knows someone who is a yoga teacher or someone who takes Yoga or Pilates or meditation or Reiki or tai chi - that you could invite to be part of it. You could do something over a weekend without a hotel involved with local participants - where you get together to knit - talk, walk, do yoga -- have a potluck lunch and snack or something. If you live in an area where hotels aren't as expensive as they are here you could maybe do it at a hotel so you would feel like you got away even though you never left town (or in a nearby town)

You could probably rent space in a community center, a library, a church hall or something to do the inside stuff in or if the weather turned out bad - and you could walk on the beach if you live in a beach area, or along a lake, or a mountain, or fields whatever.

Anyway just random (and rambling) thoughts about how anyone could do something like Clara went to. Which I am just a tad jealous about- as it sounded wonderful!!!



rho
http://rhosknittingwoes.blogspot.com/

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ladonna
New Pal

USA
33 Posts

Posted - 03/16/2006 :  12:42:08 PM  Show Profile Send ladonna a Private Message
rho1640

Why not coordinate something in your local area. Alot of yoga/pilates/masseuses (sp?) may do it for free for the advertising to the other participants. Just takes a little planning and coordinating.
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Clara
queen bee

USA
4406 Posts

Posted - 03/16/2006 :  12:51:44 PM  Show Profile  Visit Clara's Homepage Send Clara a Private Message
Absolutely! It does take planning and coordinating -- usually more planning than you expect at the time -- but you'd be doing a great service. The massages were optional and you paid the massage therapist directly. I think if you found someone good and trustworthy, and offered them a chance at, say, 10 guaranteed bookings over a weekend, you'd probably have several people interested. (I wouldn't ask them to do it for free, though.) For the yoga, if it's a local group and you find someone just starting a practice and trying to generate interest - he/she might be willing to offer a reduced rate or do it for free in exchange for the publicity.

As long as you let people know this is an informal gathering, to keep their expectations in check, you probably wouldn't have to do as much advanced programming and administrative work as I know Tara did. Having run a retreat myself, it's a LOT of work. But a casual gathering, focused on a LOCAL group and without overnight guests, would work well.

Clara
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sisterchrister
New Pal

USA
3 Posts

Posted - 03/16/2006 :  1:37:55 PM  Show Profile  Visit sisterchrister's Homepage  Send sisterchrister a Yahoo! Message Send sisterchrister a Private Message
I have hosted a few knitting retreats (called Knit One, Pray Too) for a very low cost. Sharing the costs of food and housing, those attending (never more than 13 - as that is what our venue can hold) we share the cooking and cleaning tasks as well. Mostly participants are happy for the opportunity to gather, knit or learn to knit, and share time and space out of the ordinary. You can look for retreat houses run by religious sisters in your area for affordable venues as well.

I'm also reading and practicing The Knitting Way by Linda T. Skolnik & Janice MacDaniels.. lots of good knitting and spirituality information and encouragement in there.
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ForestBird
Chatty Knitter

USA
265 Posts

Posted - 03/16/2006 :  5:17:22 PM  Show Profile Send ForestBird a Private Message
This is great! My imagination is firing up! How about a one-day local retreat: morning arrival with tea and yoga, mid-morning knitting (with soft music or inspiring passages being read aloud), lunch, massage, more knitting, afternoon tea break,a yoga wind-down and then home! I know I could coordinate a single day in my area. Huzzah!
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Lisaknit
New Pal

USA
46 Posts

Posted - 03/17/2006 :  02:32:04 AM  Show Profile  Visit Lisaknit's Homepage Send Lisaknit a Private Message
It is so funny because one of my internet customer/friends sent me an email this morning to tell me how much fun she had at the retreat and where we could see her picture on KR. She is the mystery writer and far from being Madame Posh Pants but someone that I have seen benefit from retreats and the mind/body refreshment that they offer. In such a busy world, it is a sweet thing to be able to get away from it all. I am so glad that my friend could celebrate the latest book going to the publisher with some yoga, knitting and lollygagging. It has got me thinking...
Lisa
http://lisaknit.typepad.com/tiltawhirl/
http://www.lisaknit.com
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cableready
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
386 Posts

Posted - 03/17/2006 :  05:11:05 AM  Show Profile Send cableready a Private Message
I was inspired by Clara's article to treat myself to a private (put my yoga tape in the VCR) yoga session and then knit for a time.

The article reminded me of how we connect to life through things we love to do. It can be knitting, painting really anything which kind of puts you in that zone while you are doing it.

Thanks for the article, Clara. I think that everyone's suggestions of home-grown retreats are great. Small groups of diverse people with a common thread sounds lovely.

Pamela
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Boogie
Permanent Resident

USA
3073 Posts

Posted - 03/17/2006 :  05:22:41 AM  Show Profile  Visit Boogie's Homepage Send Boogie a Private Message
That is how SPA knit and spin in Maine started. We just had the fourth one. It all started with a group of women and their friends that got together at a hotel in Portland Maine. A weekend away doing what you want.

Now it's still a weekend away but the group takes over the hotel for the weekend. Knitters and spinners everywhere. There are Massages, nail treatments, vendors, etc. You can choose to relax or pay for those spa type treatments. I really like how it's set up. Individuals will offer classes and share their knowledge, but really if you walk up to anyone they'll show you how to do something. I think this past year they had yoga and tai chi by the pool on the last day.



amy
http://theboogerblog.blogspot.com
http://www.spunkyhats.com
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Clara
queen bee

USA
4406 Posts

Posted - 03/17/2006 :  09:50:48 AM  Show Profile  Visit Clara's Homepage Send Clara a Private Message
Indeed, Amy! In fact SPA Knit and Spin was the .. I think I called it "large-scale casual gathering" I referred to in the newsletter into. You're on to me!

I'm glad people got the underlying spirit of Tara's event. I did hear from one reader who thought I was promoting a religious gathering that was an anti-American mocking of Christianity. (She also threatened me with eternal damnation ... but I digress.) Just to be very, very clear here: These are NOT religious gatherings. There is no preacher, minister, guru, what have you. There is no book, no doctrine, no set of rules. The meditation is a simple physical practice involving breathing and mental release/focus. Ditto for the yoga.

Whew. I just wanted to make that note just in case anybody else had the same misinterpretation.

Clara
Your friendly Knitter's Review publisher
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loral56
Chatty Knitter

USA
314 Posts

Posted - 03/17/2006 :  10:48:29 AM  Show Profile Send loral56 a Private Message
Clara, although I do not post very often, I am here at KR most every day.

Just reading about your Mindful Knitting Retreat sounds like such a wonderous way to spend a few days!

I read nothing that had any religious tone, or title tone, only how the love of one art/craft/hobby/addiction/etc. can bring such a diversifed group of people together.

Even a knit-in session at my lovely LYS brings that diversity of people. This is part of what makes knitting so fun...we, each one of us, have an interest in knitting, yarn, needles and what we can do with them...it is awesome. I always feel so good, relaxed and full of vim and vigor after spending an evening of knitting and sharing with our knit group.

Thank you for sharing your experience.

Lora
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VickiS
New Pal

1 Posts

Posted - 03/17/2006 :  1:59:10 PM  Show Profile Send VickiS a Private Message
Hello - I'm new to posting on this forum, but love KN. I also am a good friend of Lisa S, an amazing spinner from California. I'm in NH, and I went to Tara's Mindful Knitting retreat. Trust me when I say, that while I'm proud to be a published mystery novelist, the hours are long and the dollars are short. That said, I was pleased to have enough money to attend the retreat. Clara really captured me on "film." I'm one of the gals who is supine in the yoga picture, and she caught a swell shot of my feet. Love it! The retreat refreshed some much-needed technical stuff, but it nourished me in many ways. I loved the food (ohmygod it was amazing) and the knitting and the yoga, but I loved the people best. Clara, Margaret, Fronia, Syd, Andrea, Jamie, Jenn and half-a-dozen other amazing women taught me a helluva lot about how to knit mindfully, what knitting meant to them, and, especially, about charitable knitting. The weekend also fired me up about my next book and reminded me how much women can accomplish in one brief weekend.
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NCmusiclady
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
541 Posts

Posted - 03/18/2006 :  08:02:13 AM  Show Profile Send NCmusiclady a Private Message
So glad to read all these comments. And after reading Clara's article, I went to the library and found Tara's book...just calling my name!

Tara specifically mentions her religious beliefs in her book and also how she connects those beliefs and practices to her knitting. While I am a (hopefully) dedicated Christian, I found her book to be very enlightening and gave me much to think about regarding how I use my faith in other areas of my life.

I have enjoyed reading this book - thoroughly - enough that I will HAVE to purchase it (I wanted to highlight something on EVERY page!). And there was enough there that I have used some of what she said in my teaching - more specifically how we should be "mindful" of what we are doing at the time we are doing it.

We live in such a busy society and multi-tasking seems to be the order of the day. And because of that, we are missing out in the beauty in the simplicity of what we are doing at any given moment. We are always thinking of something else while trying to complete a task.

I talked about this with one of my older teenage students yesterday during her flute lesson. Something "clicked" in her brain - you could see it in her eyes. And the sound that she produced after that conversation was so gorgeous it drove me to tears - tears of joy! (and that hasn't happened in a long time!)

I can't afford any of these outings - but just reading your comments, Clara's articles, and then being able to have access to the books makes a difference - and it DID make a difference to me.

BRAVA!!!! Again, Thank you, KRers!!!!
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