Follow me down this path.
Updated: Mar 22, 2019
It leads us here.
I have found that I am much better at taking time for myself than I used to be, but it is still a struggle. I know that must be true for many women, though there are some of you that get it.
You know that you need to recharge your batteries to be at your best. You consistently make time for yoga or the gym or a spa or a Netflix binge or a night out with friends to decompress. I salute you!
I find it hard to not get sidetracked by the To-Do List. I think we all find it difficult to really make ourselves the priority and we are too easy to reach. One 'Can you please?' text and we drop the Me-time off the list and jump back into the fray. (Hey, they said 'please', right?). It happens a lot because caretaking IS truly gratifying and we're good at it. I also think many of us are conditioned to feel selfish or guilty if we say 'No, I need the Me-time'.
Thinking about this I asked myself some questions.
Q-How many weeks a year do I center my life around other people and their needs?
A- All of them.
Q- How many lives do I get?
Q- Do I deserve one of those 52 weeks to be just for and about me?
A- You bet.
Q-When will I set myself down on that beautiful beach instead of just looking at the pics on Facebook?
I will be sitting in one of those chairs next February and it will be glorious.
Or I might be paddling around in that.
Looking back I've realized that I've spent most of my vacations doing the same 'Momwork' just in a different location. I've told some of you the story of me trying to get just a few hours alone on the beach that ended with me sitting in my car, scratching ant-bites waiting to pick Jonathan up from aquarium camp. I found myself a little jealous of the 9 yr olds pouring out of the door, smelling like sunblock, smiling. All they had to do that day was put on a bathing suit and have a lot of fun. Someone else was handling all the details. Grownups deserve days like that too.
So, Beach Camp for grownups. The hardest part is deciding to do it.
You can be paddling around out here, or sitting on that porch over there. Those are easier choices.
Now, to be clear, there will be no actual camping unless you really want to sleep out on the sand (we'll throw a blanket on you). This is a big, comfy house.
6 bedrooms, 3 baths with real beds, no cots, no outhouses, flat screen TVs, right on our own personal beach, no chair-dragging, bag-lugging involved.
Look out any window and see water and maybe dolphins.
Wake up to the aroma of a hearty brunch (that you didn't cook) and decide what you feel like doing or not doing that day.
All planned activities are completely optional with zero judgement. Jump in, jump out, totally up to you. I've researched a pile of 'retreats' and most, though I am sure they're great, are not my style. Our version of Morning Group Sharing will be discussing the merits of coffee or tea or pomegranate mimosas. You can do a sun salutation if you feel up for it or just hang in the hot tub.
There will be an afternoon art class M-F with plenty of time for individual instruction if you'd like. Other activities include beach wildlife walks, snorkeling, dreadful sing-a-longs, birdwatching and naps.
There are 2 pools and tennis courts at the clubhouse along with a fun Tiki Bar.
Kayaks and bike rentals are available through the club and they have
a general store for incidentals.
There are 3 restaurants on the island, so you can dine out if you'd like.
Beach chair philosophy during DIY Sand Pedicure time is a highlight as well as some cheesy camp crafts (yep, there will be macrame) and groanworthy puns. Movie nights are an option, Pig-outs a must.
I will not guarantee you complete soul-shaping transformation, but I promise you a chance to truly relax & soothe away some stress and tension. Play like a kid for a moment. You may find a sparked creativity (Your inner mermaid!) and some guilt-free clarity to move on refreshed, taking some great memories home as treasures. It's okay to be a little shellfish for just one week.
I did warn you about the puns.
So now that we've looped around this path, let's figure out how you can make this happen.
The Brass Tacks- here's what's included;
--7 nights accommodation on the laid-back, no cars allowed,
warm South Florida Island of N. Captiva
(Sat. Feb 22 - Sat. Feb 29, 2020)
--Delicious daily gourmet Brunch, Dinner & Snacks. ( I will customize the menu with input from your preference sheet to the best of my ability & local resources) plus S'mores, it's camp.
--All N/A beverages. (Your shuttle driver will make a pit stop for beer/wine/liquor & extra snackies if you want them) Of course, on-site bartending skills at your service
*Margarita Meditation at Sunset is on the schedule.
-- Daily dose of Chocolate. (priorities)
-- M-F afternoon art class & all materials with plenty of time for one-on-one instruction plus some fun, old-school, campy arts-n-crafts.
-- All miscellaneous stuff that you usually have to worry about, but not this time! Beach towels, umbrellas, T.P., cleaning service, tips, etc...
-- Dock landing fee @ Barnacle Phils Includes a 10% discount at the restaurant.
-- Transfers from the dock to the house. No dragging your own luggage here! We'll get you settled.
-- Golf cart use (no off-roading) so you don't have to walk if you don't want to.
-- Detailed travel plans and packing list, if you know me, you know you won't have to think about anything, just follow the yellow brick road.
-- Concierge & tour directing, we've 3-D printed our very own Julie McCoy. FUN!
-- Beach Therapy, it's a magical thing, combined with some mindfulness moments, we will find your peace in that sand.
Yes, there is WIFI and DVD and Flat screens too, and they can text you, but they will figure it out because you are on a faraway island and can't fix it.
See, island. That house on the very farthest right side, just past the airstrip, that's where we'll be.
What's not included-
--Transportation. I will supply links to the flights you need. Allegiant has a direct flight from ABE to Punta Gorda that usually runs under 200 round trip. Since the group should be arriving together the shuttle ride to the ferry can be shared. The ferry is $40 roundtrip for a pleasant 20 minute ride to the island.
--Eco-tours, fishing charters, rental bikes, restaurants, all of these are optional and have separate charges, obviously.
Let's sit on our steps over there and talk about the money. I am exceedingly budget conscious and I have trouble spending money on myself without guilt, so I have to look at it in a way I can rationalize. Looking back at all the money I ever spent on anything, the adventures always gave me the most value. Standing in the Eiffel tower with my mom looking at the lights of Paris, laughing on a porch swing with friends in Cape May, swooping into the Grand Canyon on a helicopter, watching a seal pop up next to our boat in Maine. The memories are the life treasures. Whenever I splurged on experiences, it was money well spent.
So then I asked myself, what is the effort I put into my everyday life worth? What should I pay myself for doing the laundry, dishes, cleaning, cooking, appt. making, taxi driving, etc...? Can I pay myself $5 a day for that stuff? Am I worth $5 ? Yep, in fact I spend more than that on the other people in my life, so I think I can do that without guilt. Now here's the great part, $5 x 365 days =
$1825. That's a tidy little sum in my world.
So here's the deal. I crunched numbers, priced out the groceries at the Publix, and got it down to $1,100/pp for the week in paradise. Add in your transportation costs and at $5/day, you're still left with $400 to blow at the Tiki Bar or take an Eco Tour Cruise to check out the wildlife, manatees! The breakdown for the Beach Camp works out to $100 at the end of each month from Mar. - Jan.
We need 10 campers to reserve our spot by the end of the month. If we don't hit the goal, your $100 deposit will be fully refunded. So you've got a week to find a friend to be your roomie!
Ready to jump in? Head over to the events page and register. You can share the link here;
"A true spiritual teacher does not have anything to teach in the conventional sense of the word, does not have anything to give or add to you, such as new information, beliefs, or rules of conduct. The only function of such a teacher is to help you remove that which separates you from the truth ... The words are no more than signposts" Eckhart Tolle