Wednesday, July 16, 2014

YW Camp 2013

I was asked to volunteer at Stake Girls’ Camp by helping in the kitchen.  That meant stocking food baskets for ten camping units at each meal for them to prepare, and preparing the meal itself for the stake leaders, stake staff, and 6th & 7th year girls in “head shed.”  All in all, there were about 230 people in attendance.  headshed Here’s all the stake staff.  Can you tell this was the first day?  We’re all clean, smiling, rested, non-sunburned, and non-mosquito-bitten.

I knew it would be a lot of work because I’d helped with the food for Mom’s quilt retreat, and I knew at camp I would be helping cook for a lot more people, and the cooking would be done outside on camp stoves and dutch ovens.  About halfway through the week, we laughed every time someone would tell us we had the hardest job at camp.  It became our inside joke, among other funny experiences.  Here was my home away from home for 6 days:

DSC04426DSC04416  Looks cozy, right?  We stapled up old thrift store sheets so we wouldn’t have to wonder what kind of bug would drop on our face at night.

 DSC04418 Our well-stocked and organized “pantry.”

 DSC04419Cute kitchen babes L to R:  Me, Pam, Pattie, Melanie, Jennifer (I made the aprons for us).  We had so much fun together.  I haven’t laughed that hard at dumb random stuff in a long time.  Love these ladies!

 DSC04420This seems like a weird photo, but I had to laugh about it, as it reminded me of my girls’ camp days.  At the beginning of the week, lots of the girls braid each other’s hair…and they don’t take the braids out ALL WEEK.  During devotionals and flag ceremonies, we sat behind these 7th year girls, and each day I witnessed the ever-growing halo of ratty hair  around their heads.  I totally remember doing that! Ha ha! 

I wish I’d taken photos of our kitchen because it was a pretty impressive setup.  Brother Richmond from our ward has been going to camp for 15 years, and he was a lifesaver!  The kitchen is made up of a few folding tables and a long countertop from his kitchen that he remodeled. 

I literally did NOT sit down all day long.  If I wanted a shower (which I very much did), I needed to get up at 4:45 am and walk to the showers.  As hard as it was to get out of bed, that was probably my favorite time of day.  Walking through the camp, with no one awake but me, and having only the light of the full moon to guide me down the road, I appreciated and recognized my purpose for being there.  It’s all about the girls and the growth they’re experiencing.  I was immensely impressed with their strength and kindness.  The theme was “Finding Precious Gems” to go along with the scripture “Remember the worth of souls is great in the sight of God.” (D&C 18:10).  These girls are confident and certain of their worth.  I’m not sure I could have said the same about myself when I was their age.  The whole experience was touching, exhausting, awesome, stressful, amazing, uplifting, etc, etc...a bit of a rollercoaster it would seem.  But camp made a positive impact in one girl’s life, then my small contribution to the whole experience was worth it.


Just look at me in this photo, and you can guess that this was the LAST day of camp.  This is my sweet friend Jen, whom I might never met if not for camp.  We made each other laugh, listened to each other complain, learned about each other’s family, and made it through the “hardest job at camp” together with smiles on our faces.  I’m personally thankful that camp gave me this gift.

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