R&R Retreat for Writers







2013 retreat



UPDATE! the promo code word “breathe” will save you an EXTRA $25!

I’ve been sitting on some very exciting news, and it’s finally time to announce it. THIS MAY 24-26…

If you’ve ever gone to a conference or retreat and had a awesome time but left feeling exhausted, overwhelmed, or hit that infamous post-conference slump, something new has been designed with you in mind.

Powerhouse writers (and bloggers) Kristin Tennant and Ed Cyzewski wanted to create a weekend full of rejuvenation, time and space for reflection in a beautiful setting, practical help for writers with professional, emotional, and spiritual support. All this within a small community context (limited to a small number of guests for optimal awesomeness). It will be fun, relaxing and helpful–a time for laughter, honesty, and mutual care. A holistic retreat! Honestly, you’d be crazy to miss it.

All this for less than a typical hotel stay! So cheap. Such a gorgeous setting. So awesome, I can hardly contain myself.


The Renew and Refine Retreat for Writers is just that thing that you need.


Click to get the full details and photos of the accommodations and grounds! It promises to be an amazing time! You’ll want to dig around on the Renew and Refine website and find out more.


Early birds get a super discount.  AND for two days Ed is giving away 3 helpful books!-here.

You’ll find me there too as the Spiritual Director. I’m looking forward to meeting you, spending time together, and listening to your heart. There will be opportunities for engaging in guided Christian spiritual practices like prayer (various forms) meditation, worship, reflection, and silence, as well as a few spots for one-to-one spiritual direction/soul care, if you’re interested. (More on that in later posts)

Stay connected to the info and happenings leading up to this time by using or searching for #RRforwriters tag on Twitter.

1,600 miles later…

SPECIAL NOTE: I have been experiencing technical glitches with post notification. I do not intend to send you email updates, if you do not want them. To unsubscribe, use the ‘contact me’ button on the left side of this page, and send me a notice of your wishes. Thank you for your patience with this dilemma. I will continue to work on it, until it is resolved. To those of you who continue to read this blog and the updates, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

NEW post: We’ve covered about 1,600 miles since Saturday.

First, we traveled to Greensburg/East of Pittsburgh to attend my mom’s wedding. It was the first wedding I’ve gone to where two other families watched via Skype. Ever happen to you? It was very hot, but no fights broke out, and now my Mom’s last name is Sutyak.

Then we went about 9 hours northwest to Gurnee, IL to visit my brother-in-law, Jeff, and his wife, Joy, and their five kids, in nearby Waukegan. The hotel stay in Gurnee had too many moments of horror (see previous post).

Timmy DeLay is the new Waukegan arrival, and first kiddo spawned from Jeff and Joy DeLay’s genes–A 20 lb, 4 month old, placid, curly-haired boy who is incredibly adorable. We went to Girodano’s for delicious Chicago-style stuffed pizza. Okay. You should be jealous um… happy for me. It was wonderful! We also visited the Waukegan beach, (lake Michigan). The kids were really into burying each other in the sand, and we didn’t lose anyone…for too long.

On the way back we stayed in picturesque Bryan, OH. Wee fun fact: This town is the birthplace of Ohio Art (Etch-A-Sketch) and the Dum-Dum pop, (plus Saf-T-Pops®, Spangler® Candy Canes, and Spangler® Circus Peanuts). Bryan is so much like the perfectly cute little town set in the 1950s in Back-to-the-Future. Idyllic. Jackie Blu’s was a tasty place to eat, too.

Since we traveled so many hours on Sunday, I haven’t been very good at remembering what day it is. The practice of worship, and Christian fellowship each Sunday works like a reset button. It centers me, including such things as mundane as the order of days. Is it like that for you? Needless to say, tomorrow will be a recovery day…sort of a sabbath on a Friday. Tomorrow is Friday, right?

I wanted to share the lovely or interesting pictures from our Western Pa and midwestern adventure. So, Enjoy. Leave your questions or comments, if you’d like.

Where are you traveling soon?


Spiritual Formation: The Scenic Route 66


I’ve decided to learn a lot more about the road termed “The Mother Road”…Route 66.

Along the way, I’ll post interesting sights from my findings, and I’ll also parallel this excursion to the one we take in our heart, toward God.

You see, no one needs to take Route 66. Faster, smoother, and bigger interstate highways make this route outmoded. No, folks get their kicks on Route 66 for the journey itself…to experience the epic route that is America’s most famous and alluring roadway westward.

Route 66, Chicago, IL

The picturesque course was established in 1926, and originally ran from Chicago, Illinois, through Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, and California, before ending at Los Angeles. It covered a total of 2,448 miles (3,940 km).

During the Dust Bowl days, in the early 1930s, people packed up and took this road to make a better life for themselves. In the 1950s, a trip on route 66 was a common family vacation, filled with plenty of sights, shops, roadside attractions, eating establishments, camping grounds, gas stations, and lodging choices. A virtual monument to Americana and campy kitsch. Now the trail ends in Santa Monica, CA, and parts of the old route have been long abandon or fallen into disrepair.

Still the mystique and history of the open road west continues to excite travelers to venture on various portions of the legendary Route 66.

Starting April 3, 2011, I will be teaching a class fashioned after this type of adventure, at Bethesda EC Church, called: Route 66: Adventures in Spiritual Formation. Part I will include getting familiar with the route and its ways: the epic trail God has in store for each of us. Part II will involve the experience of traveling it for ourselves. Two 6-week bursts. I hope you can come.

Various postings here will serve as a companion to the weekly excursions we will take…like postcards and journal entries from highlights and stops on the road.

So, Hop in. During April, May, and June, get hip to this timely tip, and we’ll find some kicks on route 6-6.

Now a question for you: What’s the best road trip you’ve ever taken?




Route 66, gas station, 1929