Thursday, June 27, 2013

"Ohhhh... So it's just like white water rafting."

I love when both villages meet in the Green Cathedral for chapel. Today I got to see Devon and stand beside my friend Mags.

I LOVE friendship bracelets. This summer I've already gotten so many great ones from people I love either at camp or in letters-- Julia Dewolf, Sophie Millsaps, Lucy Newell, Liz Koch, Sarah Scott, Sarah Mooney, Taylor Fischl, Molly Henry, Julia Plant, Annie Fazzio, Lauren Pidgeon and Ellyn Hessong. I'm going to have some solid wrist tan lines.

Our first task of the day was keypad. The CILTs were split into two separate groups. This is the first team-building activity they've done together and it was interesting for the counselors to watch their group dynamic as different kids spoke up or hung back or took different supportive roles.

Our second and last challenge of the day was the 12ft wall. I saw this group circle up, demonstrate and learn how to lift, encourage one another and support those who were anxious.

They were able to get their whole team up and over the wall while staying positive and focused the whole time. It was incredibly impressive to watch after seeing so many groups go through this activity.

We circled up to debrief with an open floor-- anyone could share observations or thoughts about the experience. This conversation was even cooler to witness than the activity itself. These CILTs made really wise comments about working together, communicating effectively, feeding off of other's energy, celebrating small victories and moving forward as a group.

After all the kids went up the wall quickly and with such positive and calm attitudes, we asked if the CILT counselors could be lifted up too. Our kids were excited and everyone wanted to help us get up and over. I've never felt so comfortable having a session do that before-- we're all trying new things this week.

It's so fun to see kids like Taylor and Rachel become instant friends at camp when they'd never met in person before.

I love having kid friends in both villages. Haley is a rock star and it makes my day when she's so excited to see me.

There is a running joke about Margaret's 11th toe this summer and we got to witness that special toe's 11th birthday today.

Sometimes I really wish that we were still one camp with just one village. It would be awesome to get to see all of Tecumseh's counselors and campers every day instead of just seeing the LV people in passing every once in awhile. But I am that much more thankful on days when the CILTs eat lunch in Lake and I get to see these beautiful faces.

Julia and Mags...

Nart and Liz...

Natalie and Haley...

Margaret and Zach Clark...

and Claire. Beef and Zach made a deal with Lake that if they got no food waste at lunch they'd shave their legs. Guess what? Zero food waste.

I met Lily when she was in Emily and Mary's cabin as a tiny Brave. Right away, all of my counselor friends and I fell in love with this kid because of her huge heart, positivity and love for life. I want to hang out with her as much as I can while she's here this summer.

During late time I was buddies with Lily and Molly was buddies with Mia. The four of us jumped off the rope swing, bounced all over the blobs, slid down the wet willies and played concentration in line. It was SO much fun.

I'm excited to get to keep getting to know Kayla better. I'm so thankful that Reece is here this week--she's so sweet.

I love Thursday night cook outs in the Riv. Tonight I sat with Lily and a whole bunch of CILTs. As Lil ate her chili-cheese dog she asked the CILTs dinner questions, "If you had a sports team what would the mascot be? If you could name a bet cow what would his name be?" I know she's only 11 but this girl is going to be one of the best counselors ever in about 6 years.

These CILTs are funny. They do fun things like massage trains.

Tomorrow morning we'll visit the nursing home, so tonight we practiced flagpole and chapel songs that we'll perform for the residents.

I gave the CILTs five minutes to run back to their cabins and get dressed up for trick or treating, one of the adventures from the CILT Jar this week. The kids were so excited and sprinted back to pull out their costumes.

Smooncat came back early to go trick or treating with us and we went dressed up as butterflies.

We sent five CILTs up at a time to each cabin. They'd knock on the door and then scream, "TRICK OR TREAT" when it opened and hold out their pillowcases.

Every cabin was caught off guard for just a second before they went to find some kind of snack to give the CILTs. All the Brova Boys surprised Seminole cabin and got some good stuff.

We traveled back down the Lake road in the dark after our adventure. The girls did the rock devotion together tonight. It's one I've done with every CILT session I've been a counselor for but tonight was a clear reminder that every CILT session is unique and has their own personality.

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