It is truly amazing to me as I look back on the last year or so, just how far I've come with my beading endeavors.

This time a year ago I was getting ready to attend my first ever bead retreat -- in Shreveport, Louisiana. I eagerly signed up for every class I was able to take, and honestly learned a lot! I met some terrific people there and thoroughly enjoyed the sharing and general camaraderie. Last year, I took part in the bead challenge, where various bits and pieces are numbered and laid out and you choose one of these little groups of odds and ends and make what you can of it all. I remember distinctly getting some copper wire that looked like it was part of an old coat hanger! But I enjoyed the challenge and was just tickled to come in second -- the prize was a bead tote which I lovingly use to this day.

And so here I am again, packing last minute bits and bobs and preparing to set off for Shreveport in the morning with my friend, Ralonda. I know I'll enjoy the retreat and the opportunity to connect with friends, but this year I'm less likely to take the classes, as they won't be as challenging for me as things were a year ago.

I'm feeling blessed that I'm well enough to attend and can't wait to see what the weekend has in store!

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