Saturday, August 4, 2012

Embrace whimsy

Sometimes we like to mix things up and try something different so on this Friday we had a dance party in front of the Trading Post before flagpole. Nothing to wake you up in the morning like some Camp T moves.

Izzy loves to climb things. Sometimes we do parkour--a creative way to get from point A to point B. Sometimes she climbs on counselors.

First clinic we finished painting all of our creations. I finished painting my rock whale--a real rock, not a ceramic one. I will miss talking with Nina, Step, Matthew, Hannah and Claire everyday on the CAC porch.

We perfected our hip hop dance to Toby Mac's Me Without You by going through the routine at least eight times. We focused on little sections, took turns watching the group and even tried it to different songs. Hip Hop is without a doubt my favorite clinic and as we tried to get the kids to smile as they were focused on remembering the moves we'd yell, "Smile! You're having so much fun dancing at camp with your best friends!" because it's true.

Third clinic was Cookie's, aka Kristyn Burke's, last clinic of the summer at Camp Tecumseh so we had to go out big. As we worked on painting masks, building castles, tying friendship bracelets and weaving gymp we danced and sang to old school songs like sk8r boi, Aaron's Party, You're All I Ever Wanted, and Everytime We Touch. I loved learning dance moves from Matthew and Step and getting all the girls to dance. We went out with a bang.

Friday Nacho lunch is always a big hit and our girls were excited to do the Women of the River and the Blazer cheers.

After rest hour I got to play at the pool with my girls. It was only Blazers swimming and we all went crazy with the noodles, kickboards, beach balls, diving rings and floating cards.

Sometimes they run off to do their own thing, but today most of my girls stuck by me and were just really funny and great to play with them. I wish we could have stayed there longer.

After they competed in more Olympic events and ran a cabin relay race it was time to get ready for Sports Mania dinner. Our cabin had basketball players, gymnasts, a karate kid, several softball players and a Lax bro--we're super sporty.

I've loved having Tia Hammon at camp and in my hip hop clinic. She is so precious and I love being around her. Arielle was a popcorn vendor this summer for our theme night--it tasted a little papery but it's the thought that counts.

We play Jock Jams during dinner and it's my favorite playlist. I barely ate dinner because we were too busy dancing to Space Jam and Wavin' Flag.

The Party Room is always such a party.

Baby Lincoln was reppin' the Baltimore Ravens. Izzy and I showed off the new flipping trick we'd perfected that morning.

For the first half of the summer the Party Room is filled with CILTs but now it's filled with Braves and Blazers. These counselors do a great job of keeping up the energy in here.

Mia and I were together at Wyld Life camp last week and now we've been together at Tecumseh. It's been fun to have someone around that understands and loves both places. I met Cameron last summer, such a precious little Brave, and this summer he became friends with Jamie.

My girls were super confused as to why Jamie and I were both with them at dinner--they had gotten so used to one of us having a night off. But that's one reason I love Friday nights. It's so fun to have all the counselors together.

These people are such a huge part of my history at this place and even though I've gotten used to counselors rotating in and out each summer it would sure be strange to not have all of these girls here together. Our stories are woven together and we've seen each other though so many things.

I love that Molly lives in River this summer so I can see her all the time. She makes me laugh hard and I love when we get to play together. Erin and Erin have become friends this week and I love seeing them so goofy together.

Everyone at camp is really good at being goofy together. It's part of this culture to embrace whimsy, to do your best to love people well, to look for the positive, to take opportunities, to live life as an adventure, to practice being third, to pray often and dance as often as possible.

Shannon has been in my clinics for a couple summers now and I think she is so great. So many counselors this week really love little Maggie--she's precious.

While we were gathering people for a picture we thought, "Wouldn't it be funny to get all the people that have been Sarah Wright's camper?" So we called the people that were just in the area close by to come together. Crazy to have all these different years of kids gathered together. Just like it says in Puppies, "They gave me more than I ever gave them," and being able to watch them grow up at camp and to see so many of them become counselors is the best gift of all.

This is the last week of Day Camp for the summer and I hate that they're all going to go home tomorrow. I will miss having them in the back of chapel, watching them run all over Ft. Disco with their trail groups, seeing them in the pool as we head to rest hour, seeing them at pop stop when their kids go back home. This staff is jam-packed with some of the best counselors I've ever seen and I hope that so many of them will come back next year.

When we got to closing campfire I found my Pathfinder girls again. Even though our time together was short this year I'm so glad I got to see Maddie and Rain.

Adare, Maeve, Claire, Payton, Maddie, Emily and Rain love Camp T and it's so cool to me that all of them still come back every year. This picture was in 2009 when many of them were in Choctaw with me and now they're all Lake Village girls.

Kiersten and Ryan still have a year left as Pathfinders--who ever gets them in their cabin is really lucky.

They've grown up so much since I met them in Fox but they still have beautiful hearts and are so much fun.

I've loved getting to spend more time with Katherine Haehl this summer and Molls and I finally got a closing campfire picture together.

 I love that every Unit gets to do their cheer up on stage to start things off--the Braves and Blazers...

the Warriors and Pathfinders...

and for the last week the Day Camp staff.

I got to see Sarah Mooney for a quick second and my Dad took everyone on a Lion Hunt. The coolest addition to campfire had to have been the Making Eggs skit from Brad and Becca Hough, Johnny D and Morph--hilarity that had us quoting lines days later.

The River hip hop kids got to perform on stage and did a phenomenal job. I was so proud of each of them.

I love this place. I love what it stands for, I love the people that come here, I love how God is so present, I love what we teach, I love the joy that is so tangible here.

Saturday morning came quickly and we returned to chapel to hear about Enoch and sing the Hallelujah song. I love getting to dance and sing near Brunner every morning and watching her with her girls.

My kids have gotten more used to chapel this week and are now more excited to do the motions and we keep singing the songs all day long.

Then it was time to say good-bye. I'll miss Kylie and Cami and the rest of the girls. I'm excited that Erin, Izzy and Lexi will still be here with us next week.

Choctaw has had a crazy week together and it's been so much fun.

I'm really going to miss having Erin with us in the Longhouse next week. The Peterson sisters Emily and Ava stopped by and it was so great to see them one more time.

A big group of us went to the Stone House in Delphi to eat lunch together--onion rings, grilled cheese, Diet Coke and cookies oh my. Saturday afternoons feel like such freedom knowing we have a whole 25 hours before camp begins again.

It was the last time I'll get to be with a lot of the Day Camp counselors and it was so sad for everyone to say good-bye.

I spent the rest of the weekend with Annie Fazzio and Sarah Mooney--two of my favorite people. We took a nap, ran errands, played with my family and baby Lincoln (I'm so glad I've gotten to see so much of them this summer), got dinner at Arni's, tried frozen custard at Sycamore, worked on the list, laughed a lot and loved being together. I'm so thankful for both of them.

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