Announcing the Stepmom Retreat
Join us September 27 – 29, 2013 in Dallas for a weekend you will never forget!
One of my favorite types of emails to get from a stepmom reads something like this…. “I’m so grateful to know I’m not the only one feeling this way. Since connecting with other stepmoms I don’t feel alone anymore.” You are not alone and now you have an opportunity to attend a national Stepmom Retreat and gain valuable tools and connect in person. There is power in community and the Stepmom Retreat offers help, healing and hope. You’ll also leave feeling refreshed and with friends who you can continue to walk the journey with.
We all spend money for insurance to protect our valuable assets like our home, car, jewelry. Our most valuable treasure is our family and a retreat like this in a priceless investment in you, your marriage and your family.
I am so excited to be a part of the Stepmom Retreat. Here are all the details:
Visit www.BlendedandBonded.com to register and take a peek at the agenda. Here’s some helpful info on the retreat by Laura Petherbridge:
Who should attend this stepmom retreat?
This retreat is for any woman who is dating, engaged or married to a man with children of ANY age (even adult kids). PLUS it’s a great event for single parent moms because if they remarry they will form a stepfamily. Four of the five stepmom hosts have a ministry to stepmoms. The fifth is an amazing magazine filled with practical tips for stepmoms.
Why is there a need for a stepmom retreat?
Stepmoms often feel confused, ashamed and fearful about the complex issues associated with a stepfamily. They often don’t tell their husband or even a best friend how they are feeling deep inside. The loneliness and feeling of being “outside the family circle” is real and significant.
Why are so many stepmoms shocked by the complex issues they are encountering? Didn’t they recognize these problems beforehand?
One reason is that it’s human nature to ignore problems and believe that “love will conquer all.” Another is that the kids often don’t protest the marriage until afterwards. And a third reason is because couples inaccurately assume that if the couple is happy, the kids will be too. Basically “They didn’t know—what they didn’t know.”
What topics will be covered at the Stepmom Retreat?
We will tackle the common issues stepmoms face such as: overcoming the day-to-day frustrations of stepfamily living, co-parenting between 2 homes, and the levels of step parenting authority. In addition, we will address unique issues such as : the childless stepmom, the full time stepmom, how to blend yours, mine and ours, what to do when the former spouse is difficult, and husbands who parent out of guilt.
How will a stepmom benefit from The Stepmom Retreat?
This event will allow a stepmom to mingle with other stepmoms and learn how her feeling are normal, and that she is not alone. It will also help her to hear honesty from experienced transparent stepmoms who have survived stepfamily living, and now thrive. We even have a panel of Dads joining us to share the male perspective. Our goal is to provide help, healing and hope!
Will you be joining us? Would love to hear your thoughts on the retreat? What would you love to see? Who would you love to meet? What would make the perfect stepmom retreat for you? Don’t be bashful ladies… please share! Hint, Hint… this makes a great Mother’s Day gift. Note that early bird registration ends June 1st.… tickets are selling and there are limited seats. Get yours today! Can’t wait to say hi in person and hug…. it’s going to feel like a family reunion (borrowing this term from a dear friend who referred to the retreat as such. She is so right!).
Hy heart is to serve others. While my goal is, and will continue to be, to inform, encourage, support and connect Smoms, I am so grateful for the blessings I have received on my journey. In my attempt to pay it forward this month, I want to introduce to you another wonderful woman I have met. Amy is a wife, mother, stepmother, stepdaughter and above all a beautiful and warm person. She is an encouragement and a testimony to pressing on in the role of Smom. It is with a grateful heart and great pleasure that I share Amy’s story with you….
Thank you to Heather for allowing me to share my story with her fans and followers. I am honored and humbled that I have been given this opportunity to speak to you. I have learned that life experience is the best way to reach out to others. Sometimes it can be as simple as sharing your story. Although as difficult as times may be, I am thankful that my experience may offer some comfort to others. As a person in a blended family, it’s incredibly life-giving to receive support from others, and to have the opportunity to give support to others.
It is easy to look at all the things that go wrong with blended families. It is easy to dwell on the lack of control we may feel at times, or the negative behavior of others. When we make a choice to focus on the things we can control and the things that we can change, we then gain back control and peace. It is when we realize that we can only control our environments and actions that we can have a heart of gratitude.
It is our attitude that determines whether our kids will be angry, insecure, frightened or emotionally hurt. As adults, we must make a choice to take the burden off our children and allow them to be kids and freely love everyone.
In the spirit of a month of Thankfulness, I would like to share with you what I am grateful for.
My husband and I have a very busy life. We are a family of 7. I have 2 children and my husband has 3. I come from a blended family. I have had a stepmom since I was 5, my kids have a stepmom and I am a stepmom. I have experienced, first hand, all angles of blended families. As Heather often says, there are many, many branches in the blended family tree. Although the ideal situation is to never have to deal with these large trees, I am thankful for all of the family I have. I have two sisters and a brother that I may have never had otherwise. I am so thankful that my stepmom and I are great friends and can spend time together. I remember, as a kid, times were not always smooth and easy, but she kept a steady course and cared to fight the fight. She is now a good friend that I thoroughly enjoy spending time with and thankful to have her in my life.
I am thankful for my kids’ stepmom as well as the relationship I am able to have with her. I won’t say that I don’t experience times of jealousy or frustration, but I know she has a good heart and my kids’ best interest at heart. I am thankful for her involvement in their lives as well as their father’s involvement. I am thankful that my ex-husband and I have been able to look past our differences and hurts and work together for the greater good of the kids. There are times of disagreement and conflict, but stepping back and looking at the big picture has worked for us.
I thought becoming a stepmom would just be an extension of being a mom; after all I’ve been a mom for a long time. I’ve got this mom thing down. Little did I know there is a BIG difference in being a mom and a stepmom. As a stepmom, my every move is under a microscope, my every move is being critiqued. I found myself basing my decisions on what others would think of me. I am thankful that I have been able to settle into a role that I am becoming more and more comfortable with as a stepmom. My role is to provide a loving and warm environment when the kids are with us. There is so much I can’t control, but there is also a great deal I can. May my home be a place of stability, comfort and fun. May they feel like they can be themselves and freely express themselves. May they see my faith in God and wilingness to hang through the tough times. May they see my love for my kids, my husband and them. May we make our own memories over the years. May they see my wonderful support system.
There are many tough days ahead, but there are many, many more great days ahead. I am already thankful for the great days ahead of us. I am also thankful for the challenging days. I am certain that God has called me to this role to be a support system for my husband and his children. I am thankful that God has and will use the difficult times for His good and use me too as a support system for others. I am thankful that God has brought people such as Heather into my life for encouragement and support.
May you too be thankful in this season for the good and the bad. For from bad, God can turn to good.
What positives in your life can you focus on?
Keeping our eyes and our hearts on the blessings in our lives is a shield that negativity cannot penetrate.
Eric and Amy have been married for 4 years, together 5. They have 5 kids. Amy has a 19 daughter that is a sophomore in college majoring in Marriage and Family Counseling. Amy also has a 15 year old son that is a sophomore in high school, he is active in band and wants to go to culinary school. Eric has a 12 year old son that is very active in sports, an 8 year old daughter and a 6 year old daughter. Both girls are active in dance and twirling. Eric is a practicing attorney and Amy works at www.LifeChurch.tv. You can connect with Amy on Twitter: http://twitter.com/amyurbach and Facebook: www.facebook.com/amylurbach