A few years ago an acquaintance of mine named Bronwen invited me to be part of a summer book club.
The group consisted of seven women, many of whom I didn’t even know. The book we read together was entitled, The Artist’s Way, a book about reclaiming and engaging creativity.
We met together every Sunday night for a whole summer. During the week, we were to read the book on our own and engage in its activities and then we’d come together on Sunday to share thoughts and experiences. We bonded, and we coined ourselves the AW ladies.
What I gained from this experience was priceless. It truly was life changing.
God used this book club to gift me with an intimate community of friends, to stretch and grow me, to help me rediscover and embrace my creative side and to become more of who He’s made me to be. It left me free and alive (it was even the catalyst for this blog).
A few months ago, we found out that Bronwen was relocating to Washington DC. It would be bittersweet.
Myself and the other AW ladies wanted to give her the proper send-off, so two weeks ago we all met to share one last meal and say goodbye.
We crowded around a beautifully set table. We enjoyed delicious food. We shared hearts. It truly was a sacred evening, incredibly special.
As I sat there taking it all in, my heart welled with much gratitude. I’m so grateful to have met these ladies. I love and respect them. Each one has been a gift to me. I’ll be forever grateful for what we were allowed to share in with one another.
I hope you enjoy the photos that follow (thanks Elizabeth!), and that you too will take the time to celebrate the special people in your life and to reflect upon the seasons of life that have been a gift from God.
Kim hosted. She set the mood and created an incredible ambiance. A job well done! The greens and flowers you see on the table were picked right from her own backyard.
We enjoyed a feast. For the main dish, Kim made an eggplant gratin. She had no recipe. She just whipped it up on a whim, and boy, was it tasty! If you desire to recreate this dish, check out Ina Garten’s simple recipe.
We made space to listen to Bronwen as she described what it’s been like preparing to leave and what she anticipates for the future.
We laughed a lot, cried and enjoyed.
Bronwen wrote each one of us a letter that she read aloud around the table. It was so fun to hear what she loved about each person and the unique mark they’d leave on her life. I couldn’t have agreed more with all she had to say!
Dessert consisted of assorted chocolates, honey sponge cake with whipped frosting and fresh berries and hot tea. As you can see, the unveiling of the chocolate came as quite a delightful surprise to me and my friend Carrie.
At the end of the eve, we presented Bronwen with a gift. We made her a book to take with her. Each of us decorated and filled it with memories and sentiments. We wanted her to have something to always remember us by.
Bronwen, we miss you already but know your new-found adventure is a good.
Thank you Lord for the gift of these ladies and for your goodness towards us all!