Monthly Archives: August 2012

Homestretch (of this half)

Hello friends,

We are in the homestretch! As we say here at camp– that is cray-cray! I cannot believe I’ll be home in a week’s time &will be taking on year round fun in the week after that.

Last week was a blast. I was with the settler boys again and man, they were the epitome of little boys. I laughed A LOT and had to just let things go A LOT! I was sad to see them go at the weeks end but I had the opportunity to work with Max, one of the most beloved counselors here. Max is what some might call obnoxious, loud or perhaps child-like, but all the kids respond incredibly well to him and he does fabulously with some of the more difficult campers. I learned a lot from him and really enjoyed myself.

I was especially glad I had picked up some of Max’s tricks on Friday night when I got the news that I would be a head counselor this week!!!!!

You see, for the past 8.5 sessions I was a cocounselor and a member of program staff, which means I fill in a lot of different places and work with a lot of different kids. Often, cocounselors get only limited interaction with their cabin during the day because they are covering breaks for other counselors or setting things up for night activities. I love that job and appreciate how much work goes into being on program staff, however I have started to think more and more about wanting to try head counseling as the summer has gone on. I was thrilled to hear that Reba, our director, thought I could do it and granted my placement request.

What is different about head counseling? Well to start, I am the first one our kids should go to with problems or sleeping things or for questions. I have the opportunity to be in just one pod this week for the whole morning, so I’ll be with every kid. In the afternoon I am the one overseeing rest time, distributing mail and making sure we get to swim and choice time on time. This week, unlike before ,I am NOT around during these times, I am on my breaks. After dinner I’ll be making sure we are at our night activities on time, that we do devotions (I’m planning them too), that we get ready for bed and get to sleep on time.

So far my group had been great. I have settlers, the youngest age group but I have the oldest group of them. All the girls are entering 5th grade. They have a maturity level of maybe 4th grade, but they listen really well and are eager to help and follow directions. We are named the Duck Party and are known to quack and waddle in a gaggle. It’s adorable.

I can’t wait for the rest of the week, as we celebrate our birthday theme and have our devotions tie into that. (last night we discussed God’s gift to us of creation and how we use that gift with love and respect. Tonight we’ll be talking about Jesus’ birth and how Christmas is the ultimate birthday party) we also have a big birthday party SCAT night planned for Wednesday and a slumber party for Thursday night, our last night together. I am pumped!

I ask that you pray this week for our health, as after 9 weeks, we are deteriorating and getting sick. We need strength and love to minister fully to our kids. I also ask that you remember our director Jeff, as he has his bone marrow transplant on Wednesday. you can read his blog here

Peace, Beth

2 more weeks

Hi everyone,

It’s 7 down 2 to go here at camp, which is simply insane. We have had 7.5 sessions already which means I have sang, danced, swam, ate with and shared my love of God with hundreds of kids. That is simply breathtaking!

This past week was hard for me, as we had to say goodbye to some of our fellow staff who needed to leave early for school and other circumstances. We have a song we sing here at camp entitled “bless us for the journey.” we usually sing it Thursday night at the conclusion of the Cassidy games to the kids, but we also sing it to departing staff. This week we sang it 3 times, which was tough. It was also tough to say a goodbye in the middle of the week and not let on to the kids that the entire staff had just been in tears while they were at free time. I think it speaks to how close our staff is though, to be so sad to see one of us leave. So Shane, Anna B, Anna M and Bridget– we miss you a TON already!

As I said before, it’s crazy to reflect on how far we’ve come this summer. I can see in myself my faith growth and know it will continue to grow as we head into the year round program. Before getting to camp I was at a crossroad in my faith when a wise campus minister challenged me to find the spark and not burn out in my faith so young in life. I tell this story to the older campers and many a staff member often and I am thrilled to have had such a great influence (amongst several others) that I can tell the staff and campers about here.

This will be another challenging week at camp as our staff slowly departs but there wouldn’t be growth without challenge. I am thrilled to be back in settler boy land and also pumped that the other settler boy cabin will also have a female co-counselor. I am also happy that we have already gotten close enough that the settler boy staff, as well as some others, will be coming together each night to pray a rosary, as some of us need strength in the rosary area. We will be offering them up for Jeff, our director who is entering the hospital this week to prepare for his bone marrow transplant on August 15. If we can add any additional prayers for you, please let me know!

Peace and love, (and sursum corda to any new SJA followers!)