In January I started thinking ahead over the year to try to plan out my vacation time. I had some vacation time already planned for May and I wanted to spread out my Sundays off through the year if possible. I decided with the busy seasons of Lent and Easter I wanted to take a weekend off before May, around this late winter/early spring time. Lutherlyn, the camp I attended as a kid and worked at as a counselor, has several off-season retreats, and at least a few of them are related to crafty things and often attended by my friend Mandy and her mom. I found out that they were having a "Mystery Quilting Retreat" the last weekend of March, and confirmed that Mandy would be attending, and decided to sign up and use it for a Sunday off. I decided to make it a long weekend, and I headed home to my parents' on Thursday, and then made my way to Lutherlyn Friday evening. Unfortunately Mandy had caught the flu and spent all day Friday in bed. She was feeling better by Saturday though, so luckily it was only a 24-hour thing (as of this posting, I am still feeling ok, and hoping I avoided catching it!) and we were still able to spend some time together, even though she wasn't feeling 100%. Her mom and I each worked on the mystery quilt project, and Mandy worked a little each on a t-shirt quilt, some placemats, and a stuffed rocket (see below). The way the mystery quilt worked was that we received a list of how much fabric to get and how to make the first cuts, all before we got to the retreat. Then we received clues every so often, and you work one clue at a time and when you finish it you move on to the next clue, so that you don't know what the completed quilt will look like. And everyone can work at their own pace. Even though I waited until I was at the retreat to cut any of my fabric, I was still able to catch up to about where most of the women were. The first few clues involved a lot (a LOT) of tedious cutting, sewing, cutting, and squaring, all to make the small squares that will be put together to make the blocks. You can see a lot of these squares in the picture below. Out of 9 clues total, I only made it to clue #5, but because of all the prep work, I think most of us ended the weekend around the same place. I was able to complete one block, and put enough rows together to complete 7 more blocks when I put those rows together. Then I can move on to clue #6! My completed block is the last picture below. I wasn't expecting to complete a quilt in one weekend, so I still feel pretty satisfied with what I was able to do, and I look forward to continuing to work on my quilt. The weekend was a nice break from the normal, and a great time at a place I love with a good friend. It was also nice to see my parents for a few days, but the time definitely went too fast, so I am looking forward to them coming out to visit me for Easter.