Emily Sacra {the blog} »

Masthead header

Delight East Coast 2014

1cover

Wow. Where does one even begin? If I tried to sit here and write about everything that happened at the Delight and Be retreat last week, I would literally be here for hours, and I would absolutely for sure burst into tears numerous times just remembering everything. So I guess I’ll just try to start from the beginning!!

Way back in December, I got a Facebook notification: “Meredith Sledge has invited you to DELIGHT!” When I first saw that, I was like “what on earth is this??”, but I decided to join this elusive Facebook group ;) A few of my other blogger friends had posted about Delight retreats, but I never really understood what it was all about. I decided to jump headfirst into this ‘Delight Thing’, and I can honestly say that it was the best decision I’ve ever made. What I found in that Facebook group was an astounding support group of young women who are pursuing the creative arts and loving the Lord with all their hearts. These girls… Oh my word. I cannot even tell you how much they mean to me. I am never afraid to post an encouragement, or something I’m struggling with. In a matter of seconds, I will have a flood of notifications from these lovely ladies offering their love and support! I had no idea what an incredible blessing these girls were going to become to me. I learn so much from all of them! We talk about everything… Music, photography, art, our relationships with the Lord, and so much more. A few weeks after I joined the group, I heard about the first ever East Coast Delight retreat that was happening in April, and I thought it was going to be such an incredible opportunity for the girls that went! But I really didn’t think I’d be going. But here I am, writing this post ;) When I first signed up for the retreat back in February, I honestly wasn’t exactly sure why I was going, and I almost didn’t go. I told my parents I was going to go for it, and then the next day I told them that I changed my mind. And then the next day I told them that I had re-changed my mind and was going!! I just had this feeling that if I didn’t go, I’d always regret it. And I was so right! The retreat was going to be in Charlottesville, VA, which is only about 45 minutes away from where I live!! It was actually one of the biggest reasons I decided to go. I hadn’t been a part of Delight for very long, and I was thinking “for sure this is for girls who are really a part of Delight… Maybe I don’t post enough in the group, maybe it would be awkward, maybe nobody would like me, maybe maybe maybe…” ;) But I decided to take the plunge and purchase that retreat seat!! It was to be held on April 3-7, which I was super excited about, because it was going to be just a few days after my birthday! I knew it was going to be a great birthday week, but I had no idea just how amazing it would be.

There was another Facebook group that was created once everyone signed up for the remaining seats at the retreat. In the 1-2 months that followed, I got to know the other 21 girls that were going to be there. I became close friends with a couple of the girls, and I was just getting so insanely excited!! I couldn’t believe I was actually going!! We posted videos of our excited faces, shared prayer requests, and basically just couldn’t contain our excitement :) {yes, excitement was the prevailing emotion leading up to the retreat ;)} It was so amazing to be able to ‘meet’ and connect with these ladies before the retreat.

I rode with Meredith to the retreat, and as we drove up to the 200-year old farm house, I felt a strange mix of excitement and nerves! All those old fears were coming back… What if I forget someone’s name? What if no one likes me? What if this is not the retreat for me? But as soon as I stepped putt of the car, all those fears went away. Grace was the first one to burst out of the group of girls that were greeting us on the front lawn to give me a big hug. And after that it was a huge blur of so many hugs!! I met all of my girls that I felt like I had known for months!! It is SO different meeting people in person, than meeting them online! Which, I know sounds obvious, but I had only known these girls from a Facebook group! When you think about the fact that 22 girls who had never met each other {for the most part} gathered together in an extremely old farm house 15 minutes away from town, it sounds kind of sketchy ;) Good thing we’re all nice, normal people ;) Haha!

So the first few hours was just meeting all the other girls, and also just kind of reveling in the fact that we are here. For so long, we had all been anticipating this moment, and it was finally here! I honestly am not able to explain everything that happened at this retreat. A lot of it is just tiny little personal things, that meant so much to me. We spent hours praying with each other, lifting each other up, fighting off fears in each others behalf, crying tears of joy and freedom, and laughing so hard our stomachs hurt. We ate Emmy G’s incredibly fancy food, got sunburnt on the porch while we talked for hours in the beautiful sunny weather {ok, I got sunburnt ;) Shara and I were the only fair-skinned easily-burnt-people there ;)}. We got into small groups and worked on creative projects, and went for long walks. We swung in the hammock, and took a bazillion pictures. I did not want to leave that beautiful old home, and even now writing this I’m just about in tears remembering all the wonderful things that happened in that home!

I will forever have a connection with these girls. I still love all of the Delight girls, but these 21 have a special place in my heart. There’s just something about staying up crying and praying until 5am with like-minded souls that bonds you. I can’t even being to express my gratitude to the leaders, and my love for everyone that was at the retreat. Erin, Sarah, Ivy, Shara, Meredith, Jordan, Megan B., Valerie, Courtney, Emily N., Megan M., Angie, AnnMarie, Jackie, Grace, Anna, Kristina, Christine, Hannah, Emma, and Emmy G: I love you all so much!

I have so many pictures to share, and I apologize in advance for slowing down your servers ;)

We pulled up to this house, and I made 21 instant best friends…

Blog_0001

Such a beautiful old barn! Except for the fire alarm going off every 27 seconds and the train that would come barreling around behind us every hour or two {and yes, it went all night too ;)}

Blog_0002 Blog_0003 Blog_0004

The girls who had gotten there a few days before us decorated the house absolutely gorgeously!!

Blog_0005 Blog_0006 Blog_0007 Blog_0008 Blog_0009 Blog_0010

Late night conversations :)

Blog_0011 Blog_0012

I absolutely loved waking up early to do my personal devotions!

Photo Apr 04, 8 30 19 AM Blog_0013 Blog_0014 Blog_0015 Blog_0016 Blog_0017 Blog_0018

AnnMarie did a fantastic job leading worship!

Blog_0019

The dining room was stunning! It was like walking into a fiesta every night ;)

Blog_0020 Blog_0021 Blog_0022 Blog_0023 Blog_0024 Blog_0025

Courtney, you are gorgeous!!

Blog_0026 Blog_0027 Blog_0028

Seriously, this was not just any normal ‘retreat breakfast’, these were pretty much gourmet meals!

Blog_0029 Blog_0030 Blog_0031 Blog_0032 Blog_0033

I loved my small group!! This was when I got really sun burnt ;)

Blog_0034 Blog_0035 Blog_0036 Blog_0037

We all got these adorable tumblers!

Blog_0038 Processed with VSCOcam with g3 preset Photo Apr 04, 7 24 50 PM Blog_0039

Working on our creative project with our small group! The project was to create a backdrop that reflected ‘who God says we are’

Blog_0040

Emmy G. made sure we always had snacks around the house, and those peanut butter pretzels were my favorite ;)

Blog_0041

I love my Buttercup!! <3

Blog_0042 Blog_0043 Blog_0044 Blog_0045 Blog_0046 Blog_0047 Blog_0048 Blog_0049 Blog_0050

I love that you can see all the words we wrote!

Blog_0051 Photo Apr 04, 7 30 27 PM Blog_0052

Beautiful place settings!!

Blog_0053

Mornings at the retreat were definitely some of my favorite times… Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely loved hanging out with my wonderful new friends, but having my alone time with the Lord was super special to me :)

Blog_0054 Blog_0055 Blog_0056 Blog_0057 Blog_0058 Blog_0059 Blog_0060 Blog_0061

Second day of getting sun burnt ;)

Blog_0062 Blog_0063

Anna, you’re so adorable ;)

Blog_0064

Sun tanning after morning session! So it’s no surprise I got really burnt ;)

Blog_0065

Goldfish and Teddy Grahams!

Saturday afternoon, we had a fun time of shooting and learning from Emmy G.!

Blog_0066 Blog_0067 Blog_0068 Blog_0069

Love these of you, Jackie!!

Blog_0070 Photo Apr 05, 5 31 08 PM

This is what happens when 20+ photographers meet at a retreat ;)

Blog_0071 Blog_0072 Blog_0073 Blog_0074 Blog_0075 Blog_0076 Blog_0077 Blog_0078 Blog_0079 Blog_0080

This tunnel was amazing for portraits!!

Blog_0081 Blog_0082

ANNA!! I can’t even. You’re absolutely gorgeous!!

Blog_0083 Blog_0084

I SO wish I could do that!!

Blog_0085 Blog_0086

Christine, it is impossible to take a bad picture of you!!

Blog_0087 Blog_0088 Blog_0089 Blog_0090

I have no idea who took this one… My camera got passed around quite a lot! Haha! But thank you to whoever did take it ;)

Blog_0091 Blog_0092 Blog_0093

Call me crazy, but I love shooting in full sun :)

Blog_0094 Blog_0095 Blog_0096 Blog_0097

This retreat center had the best places for pictures!!

Blog_0098 Blog_0099 Blog_0100 Blog_0101 Blog_0102 Blog_0103

I’m obsessed with Grace’s shoes!!

Blog_0104 Blog_0105 Blog_0106 Blog_0107 Blog_0108 Blog_0109 Blog_0110 Blog_0111 Blog_0112 Blog_0113 Blog_0114 Blog_0115 Blog_0116 Blog_0117 Blog_0118

Jordan Brittley was the videographer… I can’t wait to see the video!!

Blog_0119 Blog_0120 Blog_0121

Loved this impromptu balloon photoshoot with Courtney :)

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Photo Apr 06, 10 33 22 AM Photo Apr 06, 10 36 07 AM

Learning from Jordan!

Blog_0122

Saturday night we had our evening session by a bonfire, which was amazing!!

Blog_0123

Angie cracked me up :)

Blog_0124 Blog_0125

And Sunday was PARTY DAY!! We all wore our new Delight t-shirts, took group pictures, and then we took pictures in front of our backdrops! Then we were free to take pictures of everyone else for the rest of the day!

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

Sunday morning was really cold, but I made myself stay outside anyway! Haha!

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset Photo Apr 06, 12 28 28 PM

After our morning session, we all got these little gift bags…

Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset

I absolutely love this necklace!!

Photo Apr 06, 12 20 59 PM Photo Apr 06, 12 25 33 PM

Awkward selfie polaroids :)

Photo Apr 06, 12 26 45 PM Blog_0126 Blog_0127 Blog_0128 Blog_0129 Blog_0130 Blog_0131 Blog_0132 Blog_0133

I had the best small group! :D

Blog_0134 Blog_0135

Love this one!

Blog_0136 Blog_0137 Blog_0138 Blog_0139 Blog_0140 Blog_0141 Blog_0142 Blog_0143 Blog_0144

Me and the leaders!

Blog_0145

Megan, I love this one of you!!

Blog_0146 Blog_0147 Blog_0148 Blog_0149 Blog_0150 Blog_0151 Blog_0152 Blog_0153 Blog_0154 Blog_0155 Blog_0156 Blog_0157 Blog_0158 Blog_0159 Blog_0160 Blog_0161 Blog_0162 Blog_0163

I loved how their backdrop looked just like a beach! And Emily matched it perfectly ;)

Blog_0164 Blog_0165 Blog_0166 Blog_0167 Blog_0168 Blog_0169 Blog_0170 Blog_0171 Blog_0172 Blog_0173 Blog_0174 Blog_0175 Blog_0176 Blog_0177 Blog_0178 Blog_0179 Blog_0180 Blog_0181

Love these, Grace!!

Blog_0182 Blog_0183 Blog_0184 Blog_0185 Blog_0186 Blog_0187 Blog_0188 Blog_0189 Blog_0190 Blog_0191 Blog_0192 Blog_0193

Meredith, that black & white one is my favorite of you!! So classy and stunning <3

Blog_0194 Blog_0195 Blog_0196 Blog_0197 Blog_0198 Blog_0199 Blog_0200

Ohhhh this light… Makes me swoon :) So crazy to finally have met this sweet girl!! We’ve been blogging buddies for so long :)

Blog_0201 Blog_0202 Blog_0203 Blog_0204 Blog_0205 Blog_0206 Blog_0207 Blog_0208 Blog_0209 Blog_0210 Blog_0211 Blog_0212 Blog_0213

Ivy, you’re style is so amazing and classic! I’m so jealous of how you can pull off that headband ;)

Blog_0214 Blog_0215

Anna and I did a photoshoot in the awesome bathroom… :)

Blog_0216 Blog_0217 Blog_0218 Blog_0219 Blog_0220 Blog_0221 Blog_0222

Processed with VSCOcam with b1 preset Photo Apr 06, 7 37 31 PM

Worth it ;) #photographerproblems

Blog_0223 Blog_0224 Blog_0225 Blog_0226 Blog_0227 Blog_0228 Blog_0229 Blog_0230 Blog_0231

Christine, you are just such a model!!

Blog_0232 Blog_0233 Blog_0234 Blog_0235 Blog_0236 Blog_0237 Blog_0238 Blog_0239

Photo Apr 06, 7 41 07 PM

Well. Apparently handstands in the gravel wasn’t the best idea ;)

Blog_0240 Blog_0241 Blog_0242

Again, no idea who took these! Haha!

Blog_0243 Blog_0244 Blog_0245

FIERCE ;)

Blog_0246

Processed with VSCOcam with b1 preset

Meredith, Hannah, and I tried to find a place to buy some ice cream for Megan M.’s birthday, but instead we found Shady’s Place… Haha!

Photo Apr 07, 5 21 20 AM

Non-fat organic frozen yogurt for Megan ;)

Photo Apr 07, 2 13 22 PM These letters make me smile :) I love you girls!!

Davene Grace - I had never heard of Delight retreats until you went on this one, but it’s been fun to hear (and see!) about it since! I’m so glad you got to have this amazing experience. :)

Back to top|Contact me