I was supposed to be heading to a retreat on Thursday with several of my crafty friends, but the retreat decided to cancel their event. I'm so sad, especially since Scrapbook Expo in Irving was cancelled, and Great American Scrapbook Convention is now moved (very inconveniently) to the same weekend as my daughter's wedding (uhh...Christen, would it be okay if I duck out early to go crop? LOL Oh, you want to go, too? Okay...). Seriously, though, I really wanted to crop with my friends, and I wanted to have that "retreat feeling", so we're going to make it happen, even if we have to all stay in our own homes.
I host a weekly crop at my house every Thursday, and when coronavirus decided to rear its ugly head, we decided to continue cropping via Zoom. Zoom meetings is very easy to use, and I opted to pay for the premium service (for now) so we can have meetings longer than 40 minutes. We meet every Thursday at 10 AM and crop until 4PM or until everyone has to get offline to go make dinner. It's very much the same as having everyone here in person. We work on whatever we're working on and we chat, and sometimes we get engrossed in our projects, so we don't talk at all, but we're still together. And we get the satisfaction of being able to share our projects with each other. It's so much more fun than crafting alone.
|A virtual crop with my Thursday MDO crop group.|
For our National Scrapbook Day crop and retreat, we'll again be using Zoom, but we'll start on Friday morning and the crop will run continuously until Sunday afternoon, so everyone can come and go. The idea is to treat it just like a real retreat, so I'm going to chase my family out of my craft area and put up a big sign that says, "Gone on a Retreat!" I'll even wear my pajamas and eat some junk food, just to make it feel real. One of our friends is coordinating "door prizes" to be given away; everyone will dig through their stash to find a few items they no longer want or need. We'll take pictures to post in our Facebook group and we will have drawings throughout the event for people to pick which prizes they want.
You don't have to do something as elaborate as our little virtual retreat, but you should definitely consider doing something for National Scrapbook Day. Some stores are posting that they are going to host events. Or you could join one of the many virtual crops already planned (just Google National Scrapbook Day Virtual Crop). Use Skype, Zoom, FaceTime or another video chat software to meet with friends. Finding ways to be social, even when we're social-distancing, is important to our mental well-being. And besides, who can say "no" to an excuse to stay in your PJs and eat junk food?