So you see the social media posts, you get the emails, but what other retreat-focussed work do we do that you don’t see?
Last Saturday, Zoë and I had a happy afternoon watching the booking forms arrive for the June 2020 Stratford retreat. It’s always wonderful finding out who will be joining us for the weekend, and fills us with enthusiasm to plan the very best retreat that we can! Some old friends will be returning, but plenty of new people have signed up. The chat group has been set up on Ravelry, and I’m looking forward to getting to know people before I meet them in person! I’ve got a routine going now for getting everyone’s details into a spreadsheet and then ticking names off when they have their invoice when they pay, when I’ve tagged them on Ravelry, etc etc. We are both big fans of lists, and so we have lists coming out of our ears to make sure we know what has been done, what needs doing, which invoices need chasing, who has food allergies, and so much more!
Now, we are brainstorming and dreaming up ideas for next year’s retreats. We are thinking about what we want to put in the gift bags, how we can decorate the venues, what activities we can plan. We don’t believe in resting on our laurels, and always aim to make the next retreat even better than the last. We have started to review feedback forms and are making notes on any wrinkles that could be ironed out next year. I am updating the website and sorting out the invoices and emails, and Zoë is our social media manager and is planning a Makealong in our Ravelry group as well as what will be going on Instagram.
Obviously, we are being fuelled by many pots of tea, but the lovely comments from our past retreaters are really driving me forward right now. I have seen people come alone to a retreat and then leave with lots of new friends. I’ve seen those friendships endure over social media with retreaters commenting on each other’s Instagram posts, for example, in good times and bad. It is heartwarming to me to see these connections being forged because of an event that Zoë and I have organised, and it absolutely makes me want to carry on and hopefully facilitate more friendships between people in the crafting community!
Do you have any questions for us with regard to our retreats? Is there anything you would like us to write about on this blog? Leave a comment or post a message on our social media channels and we’ll see what we can do!