Wednesday, August 24, 2011

heading north

today, i loaded up my car full of what i believe to be essential items for living at college (though i must admit i probably only need half of what i took with me) in preparation to head north in the morning. i have so many mixed feelings about the idea -- i can't wait to get there and see everyone and start decorating slash planning with Amy, but i also terribly miss mount hermon and day camp... ..., i'm driving up by myself, which is cool i guess, but the farthest i've ever driven is about 35 minutes and now i find myself at the threshold of a 4 hour drive...alone...with my car packed full of crap (very personally valuable crap, but crap all the same). around this time last year, or perhaps a week later since i was most likely still at camp this time last year...i digress...around this time last year, i was so excited and nervous that i could barely sleep, and i stayed up almost all night looking up youtube videos posted by simpson students and changing the lyrics of some of my favorite songs to fit the journey i would be taking the next morning...last night i started looking back on pictures and blog posts of last year, but then started looking also at pictures and posts from this summer -- life is moving by so quickly! sometimes i am grateful for the pace, especially during weeks when we have crazy children, but right now it's so hard to believe that just a week ago i was living in upper birch and hanging out with some of my most very favorite people in one of my most very favorite places.....

well...tomorrow will soon come and it will bring with it some more of my most very favorite people in one of my other most very favorite places, but...has it come too quickly? or has it taken it's time in coming??? - i can't decide, but either way, it has come and i embrace it with open arms

grab your bag and grab your coat. tell the ones that need to know. we are headed north.

Monday, August 22, 2011

God's timing is so good: my lovely new co-RA

i go back to school in two days! i can't even handle the wait. just before i left camp, i received news that Amy Haley was going to be my new co-RA. this was the biggest blessing i could have received. this whole time i was stressed that i would be paired with someone who would understand my heart for our floor or wouldn't agree with my philosophy or decoration ideas...but God paired me with someone who understands all of those things and is willing to support me in them. i am so excited to work with her planning trash tuesdays and nail painting parties while spontaneously dancing to natasha beddingfeild's "i wanna have your babies" at 2:37 in the morning trying to stay awake in order to get that last flower cut out or name plate stamped or button glued while talking about our summers at camp and our visions for our floor and the memories that we have of our wonderfully fantastic RAs Leeza and Wendy and how we hope to do our floor justice by them -- Amy Beth, this year is going to be great; i just know it

haha oh the crazy adventures that will ensue

Sunday, August 21, 2011

walmart adventure - how i met Jack

well, thursday finally came and it was time to pack up and leave my dear Mount Hermon home and head down the mountain to my aunt's house in walnut creek. it was hard leaving for sure, but i was also ready to sleep for the next 48 hours and call it good. unfortunately, or rather quite fortunately, i was not going to get much sleep that night because i had promised Faith that i would go over to her house as soon as i arrived. by this time i had somewhat memorized the way to her house and was quite proud of myself for getting there without looking up directions or taking a wrong turn. when i arrived at her house we decided that it would be best to go somewhere to get food; so between the two of us we made it to panda express about ten minutes away and then to blockbuster in the next town over.

feeling quite proud of ourselves for being so directionally fluent, we decided to head over to walmart to look at some things i needed for school. being somewhat ambitious, we felt that of course we didn't need directions since we could get to panda express and blockbuster; besides walmart was near our friend Holly's house so of course we could find it...

we started off by driving down one of the main streets that we knew eventually would take us from pleasant hill to martinez, but as we traveled along, the road became more and more unfamiliar until we finally found ourselves in the midst of a shell oil plant...this was when we finally decided to call our dear friend holly who just so happened to be driving in that same area (what she was doing by the oil plant, no one knows) and decided to try to find her and follow her back to walmart.

when we finally met her in the parking lot she asked us what we needed from walmart. Faith and i both began to laugh as we announced that i was in search of a gps system for my new car, which i promptly bought so that we could find our way back home. it was a wonderful welcome back for certain : )

p.s. his name is Jack and my car's name is Kerouac : )

Monday, August 15, 2011

the seed must die

this summer has blown past me. it has brought so much pain and love, friendship and sorrow, fear and it is ending and i don't know how to feel. i am excited to move on; i'm excited to see all my friends that i feel like i haven't seen in years, but i am weary to leave the family i have here. i'm exhausted and thoroughly stressed. my campers this week are crazy and i still don't know who my co-RA is going to be. my decorations aren't anywhere close to being done and my closest friends that i have spent nearly every hour with for the past 10 weeks are being pulled away from me in every direction. transitions are sticky and yucky and messy, but they are beautiful! they bring so much growth and such a new wonderful beginning. i know it hurts, but in the end it will be fantastic.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

catch up!

wow! i haven't written in quite a while, and the only reason i have for this is that i've been extremely exhausted and stressed. the few weeks after darling Madi left were not the easiest weeks of my life. i finally was put with 3rd and 4th graders which was great, but my heart was so drained. i couldn't pour my all into them because there was nothing left to give. it took a lot for me to allow myself to step back and realize that God had these awesome girls in His arms and He was going to love them and teach them regardless.

during the next week, Dallas week, i was given the opportunity to be craft director for the week so Sprinkles could have a break. i loved it! i loved being in lanyard window; i loved helping organize all the crafts; i loved keeping the kitchen clean; i loved everything about it! unfortunately, there was a misunderstanding that took every last ounce of patience from my body and i finally broke down crying. i cried for Madi; i cried for the month of May; i cried for loosing my co-RA; i was exhausted, lonely, and misunderstood. the lies that flooded my thoughts still haven't relinquished my heart completely, and with that baggage i entered into the final stretch of the summer including staff retreat, which ended up being quite cathartic.

Dallas week was followed by another week of 3rd and 4th graders. i was so excited to have them again because, after my cathartic weekend, i finally felt like i could give them more of myself. i had some trouble with one of my campers not wanting to be in my group or do anything really, but by the end of the week, she was having fun too :) week 8 also brought Boonis to Day Camp. Boonis is our end of the year fill-in one-on-one counselor who is absolutely fantastic.

that weekend was our annual summer staff banquet. this year the entire dinning hall was turned into a Cuban night club for "Tropicano Cubano Hermono". the night was absolutely perfect!

the following week brought the last week of family camp and another wonderful group of 5th and 6th grade girls. for a lot of my campers, this was their very first time at mount hermon, and i was so privileged to be their first counselor.

this brings us to Chinese Family Camp. half of our staff has now left us for the summer which brought heartache, but also joy since we have received wonderful fill-ins from Redwood. as if this week were not crazy enough on it's own, i had the flu all weekend, and began this week physically and emotionally broken, but it has been beautiful to see how God can renew and restore even in the midst of crazy campers and crazy situations.