Thursday, July 5, 2012

God bless America and CILTs and heart to hearts

The 4th of July is quite the celebration at Camp Tecumseh. Everyone woke up excited to put on their most patriotic red, white and blue. There were America songs at flagpole and we gave our country the Order of the Oar.

Day Camp couldn't contain their USA pride.

Baby Lincoln was stoked to wear his stars and stripes as well. Chapel this morning was refreshing and the perfect start to my day.

The CILTs started their morning with the Sherpa Walk. When it begins they're mostly blindfolded and don't know what to do. Which explains why Emma Hall thought she should take a nap or later on why she spun in circles about thirty times.

I loved watching this group try to use the leadership tools and strategies they've worked on in the past two weeks as they figured out their current situation. They did an awesome job.

We got to eat ice-cream sundaes while we debriefed and then played Fishbowl with the whole group. I know I say it often, but I love that every day with CILTs is different than the one before. The variety is refreshing.

Before lunch I sat down with this girl who had been sitting by herself beside the four-square court. Alice and I quickly became friends and she told me all about her clinics, her family back at home, what she thought of chapel, her cabin and how she's so excited to be a stay over for next week.

Because it was a holiday we got to have Push Pops at lunch for a special treat. For the first time this summer we got to teach all the CILTs how to HOH- hang out horizontally.

After a long rest hour the CILTs got to help run Gold Rush.

When we weren't collecting golf balls from campers or handing out water we were dancing hard and singing loud.

If Tecumseh Counselors had a chart of our strengths and weaknesses, Dancing would definitely go under the strengths column in bold and underlined. Coll and Moll are willing to give lessons or demonstrations whenever you need them.

"I want a life that sizzles and pops and makes me laugh out loud... I want to eat cold tangerines and sing loud in the car with the windows open and wear pink shoes and stay up all night laughing and paint my walls the exact color of the sky right now.... Let's sizzle and pop in his name. Let's dance and shimmer and scrawl our our stories across the sky like he taught us to."

It's people like Kendall, Chrissy, Arielle, Kata, Coll, Mary Brody, Brunner and Burke that live this sizzling and popping kind of life. This summer we get to dance and shimmer together.

I spent the rest of the afternoon at the lake. God bless the Richard G. Marsh lake. God bless the Warriors and Pathfinders. God bless America.

I got to sit on the hill with my friend Kathryn and talk for an hour about life and friends and taking camp home with us and faith and kids. These heart to hearts with my campers are easily one of my favorite parts of being a counselor and why I keep coming back year after year.

There was a runaway Beaz Board so I got to jump in and rescue it with my favorite Sarah Mooney. I love when our camp days get to Overlap even if it's just for a hot second.

Arielle and I ran the Trading Post tonight and got some pretty good trades from the CILTs. I was a big fan of the Stone House sugar cookie and the two friendship bracelets.

Arielle and I hung out with Stacia who was working on perfecting her sand pants...

and with Sarah who was trying to dig all the way through the sand to the dirt or to China--whichever came first. I love playing with these little girls and hearing their stories and creative ideas.

We had night chapel, one of our devotions that's extra special because it's so different. We talked about Romans 8:38-39 "For I am convinced that nothing--neither death nor life, neither the present or the future, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." 

I used to do a devotion where we would rewrite those verses and change the middle part to be a list of the things we feel separate and distract us from the love of God. Now I can look at those rewritten versions to see how God has answered my prayers, changed my heart, and been working in my life. I'm going to choose to trust that he's in control of all the things that are on my current list.

Thursday morning for our "Choose Your Own Adventure" we started with a tour of the Yurt and Longhouse, then made our wooden name tags and finally played Capture the Flag tank tops v. shirt sleeves.

Team Tank Top was intense. Not only were we competitive and ready to play, we were also well ventilated. The heat would not be a problem for us.

Everyone on Team Tank- Katie, Will, Betsy and Arielle included, were all just so happy to be playing.

Team T-Shirt was pretty cool too I suppose.

We didn't end up winning but still just had fun playing together. I love spending time with these kids and will miss Zoe, Emily, Taylor and the rest of the CILTs when they go home in a couple days.

Before lunch I got to sit on the back porch of the Longhouse and talk with my friends Alice, Sarah and Katie. Doing CILTs really is the best of both worlds because I get to be a counselor for the oldest campers and still spend time everyday hanging out with the younger ones. This time with these three campers was what I picture when I think of my perfect day in the River. I wish I could keep them here all summer.

Another one of my favorite things? Spotting campers loving on their CILTs.

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