weak one

After the first week of camp, I am reminded again that I’m still learning.

I’ll be really honest, this week was hard for me. There were two days that I was completely messed up and just not myself. Or maybe I was too much myself. I think I let ME control those two days instead of God. My focus was completely skewed. It’s hard because I’m not really involved in the daily activities of camp. I didn’t know it would bother me this much. I think camp is in my blood. It’s not that I miss counseling so much – I have campers still (who are amazing, by the way) – I think it’s just a lack of interaction with people. Maybe a lack of activity. But that’s not really what I was messed up about. It was just an added thing.

I’m just selfish. That’s all. And impatient. And I have a little trust problem. I complain too much a lot of the time, too. But my God is sufficient. That’s what I’m still learning.

I’m starting to pray pretty specifically about some things. That scares me. I’ve asked myself before how specific I can be in my requests to God. After claiming Psalm 37:4-7, I’ve prayed very specifically in the past. And things didn’t happen how I expected and I ended up hurting. I still question why. I wonder if I did something wrong in asking God for something specific or if I just needed to learn a lesson. Or maybe God just said no because He knows what’s best. So here I am, praying specifically again and being a little hesitant this time. I just need to be able to accept any answer He gives.

A couple weeks ago when I was thinking about this stuff (because I think about it a lot), I realized that I can fully trust God. He allows me to have fun. Isn’t that insane? I don’t know why I haven’t thought about that before. My God wants me to have fun. He’s given me laughter and joy and really weird friends who do the most random things sometimes. All of it is from Him. I don’t know why I’ve never viewed the fun I have as being from God. Sometimes I’m just stupid.

So yeah. Camp is great. I’m learning . . . and it’s only week one.

sand and more sand

I made my way safely to Ironwood a few days ago. It seems like I never really left. I am reminded how much I love this place. It’s very much like a home to me. My plane ride over was pretty uneventful. Well . . . maybe not. I had an aisle seat [which I’m pretty sure hasn’t happened before]. I’m not complaining, it was just a different experience. The did beverage service seriously 4 times on the plane. It was insane. And it was my seat for a 4-hour trip. I read Pride and Prejudice most of the time and now I have about 100 pages left. We also had an extremely bumpy ride. The mom next to me kept making faces and gasping.

The past 2 years, Ironwood has sent several cars to the airport to bring several groups back to camp. This year, we waited around in the airport for a few hours because we had a BUS! So my dear friend [and camper from the past 2 years] came to visit me with another good friend. It was really nice to see them, even though I’ll be seeing them in about 2 weeks or so. We arrived at camp a little later than planned, so we just headed straight to dinner. Nobody cooks tri-tip quite like Camp Ironwood. Delicious.

I would’ve been taking pictures already, but my camera is having issues right now. I’m not really sure what the problem is.

Ever since I’ve been here, the wind has been blowing. It’s amazing. The huge mountain that we hike has been nearly invisible a few times due to how much sand was being blown around. I love the weather here.

I love the stars.

Ok, so since I don’t have to go through lifeguard training again, I’ve been doing lots of random other things to fill my time. I’ve been running in and out of the design office. I’m currently working on a few posters for the junk food we sell to the teens every nite. [Seriously. Deep-fried twinkies have got to be loaded.] Today, I spent most of the day learning how to run the registers in all the various stores since I’ll be helping out with that at nite. Then there are the morning sessions at 7:00 for we 3 leadership counselors, chapel at 8:30, veteran sessions at 10:00(ish) and music rehearsal!!! Last nite, rehearsal lasted a few hours and I’m accompanying for all the specials in Rivertown. [I’m really excited about it. And it’s nice to spend time down in Rivertown.]

Tonite, I actually have the nite off. So that’s why I’m blogging. But I’m about to go help some people do some stuff. Or get back to those posters.

top 5 – books

I wanted to do a Top 5, but I was having problems thinking of a stellar idea.

1. All-time favorite: Wuthering Heights. I’ve only read this book once, but it’s my favorite. I don’t return to books often. This is one I would pick up 20 more times.

2. Christian-living: The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment. Jeremiah Burroughs hooked me on chapter 1. This book gave me a greater perspective on one of my biggest struggles. Yes, I’ve gone on and on about this book. And no, I won’t stop anytime soon.

3. Children’s book: If You Give a Mouse a Cookie . . . This was my first book I owned [I think]. It’s the first one I remember owning, anyways. I loved the illustrations way more than the story. Still a good read.

4. Tear-jerker: Where the Red Fern Grows. I was not happy with this book. I cried many tears out of my little eyes when I was in 3rd grade. Those dogs loved each other. No good. Perfect.

5. Made-into movie: Pride and Prejudice. This is a current read; I’m almost halfway through. I highly recommend the movie [new or A&E version]. I’m not a huge Austen fan – I love her stories, but her books get insane sometimes. This one has proven to be enjoyable so far.

Go read something.

on the way there . . .

I enjoyed today thoroughly. Ok, maybe not thoroughly because that implies that there weren’t any parts I didn’t particularly enjoy. I didn’t enjoy the sick feeling on the ride to Atlanta. Nor did I enjoy going through my suitcases trying to get rid of that extra 5 pounds so I don’t have to pay more money to ride a plane.

But . . . I had tons of fun with my extended family, met some new people that I’ve seen around at Grace Baptist on extension, and actually played a pretty good game of football – something I haven’t done since last summer. We lost, but I scored once and laughed my way through most of the game. I think I’m going to end up with a pretty wicked bruise on the left side of my face from getting nailed in the first play, though. It’s amazing what a little fellowship will do to jump start friendships.

dsc00862.jpg

Hannah (my cousin) is way more tan than me. No fair. She wanted to try my glasses on, so we switched. I think they look pretty good on her. And her glasses are almost like my old ones.

dsc00864.jpg

Now here is an interesting game. It’s called Pit and it’s like Spoons, but with tons of yelling. They played for a couple hours at the graduation party. It’s a wonder any of them still have voices.

I’m leaving for camp in 36 hours.

Last nite, I got to hang out with my youth leaders and their kids – Autumn, Ethan & Colton. My sister and another friend, Brett, came with us, too. We got to discussing games we used to play when I was but a wee lass of a teen. Ok, so I don’t know . . . maybe you’ve seen these interesting toothbrushes they have now that are suction cups on the bottom. I guess this is so you can stick it to the mirror when you’re done? Who knows. Autumn & Ethan both have these and Paul & Beth came up with a great idea for a game. Stick the toothbrush to your forehead and brush your partner’s teeth. Lovely. Paul demonstrated for us.

dsc00847.jpg

dsc00817.jpg

This is my little friend, Colton. We have laughing fits together.

dsc00821.jpg

He wanted to touch the lens.

No guarantees about the blog once I get to Ironwood. I’m hoping to get something worked out, but I have a feeling it probably won’t happen.

trip it

I made the 4-hour trek to Greenville this past Monday. I went under the guise of a job interview with Greenville Magazine (which I will say more about later). My real reason for going was to hang out with friends.

dsc00798.jpg

While in Greenville, I was able to hang out with most of my friends who are still around. We threw a birthday party for my friend, PJ. Our celebration included driving all over creation to find a park to play volleyball at, and then a 3-hour set of games. [This is not because we’re good. It’s because we’re not. And we only played to 21.] My team won because we were the lesser of the two evils. And maybe because we only had 1 guy – the amazing Michael Collins.

A few of us went down to Falls Park the first night. I got a couple fun pictures.

dsc00791.jpg

My interview went well, but it was pretty short. The position is for an ad designer. I’d probably get to do some layout design on the side, which would be excellent. The editor asked me to call back in a week with an idea of what I’d expect for salary, etc. So right now I’m working on figuring all that out. From looking at my other options, this is still the one I have the most interest in. I’m hoping things will work out. The one problem is finding an apartment in the event that I do get the job. I’ll be in California through August 19. They would probably want me at work August 20 because the job actually opens up August 1. The editor told me it shouldn’t be a problem to work around that, but she’s also going to interview a few other people. Pray for wisdom on my part. If it’s not right, I’d rather just have God close the door.

After getting back from Greenville yesterday, I have 2 days at home before I leave again on Saturday. We’re headed to my cousin’s graduation party near Atlanta. I’m going to be staying with them through Monday morning when I fly out to Vegas to start the trip to camp. I’m insanely excited about going back to camp this summer and getting to see old friends. But I’ve decided packing is no good. I’ve attacked all the non-clothes items tonite and will hopefully get to the clothing dilemma tomorrow. [Well, I guess I have to do it tomorrow . . . ]

I don’t know if I’ve really mentioned what I’m doing at camp this year. I’m working at Camp Ironwood for the 3rd year in a row. For those of you who don’t know much about Ironwood, it’s this great Christian camp located in the middle of the Mojave Desert in California. They’re in the growing stage and are opening their 3rd camp this year. Ike’s Roost is the newest camp and will consist of several weeks of junior-high camp as well as being the home of the horsemanship camp in the weeks when it’s not entertaining junior-highers. Broken-I Ranch is the junior camp at Ironwood. I think they’re in their 5th year of camp. I’m not completely sure. Rivertown is where I’ve worked the past 2 years as a counselor. You can probably guess that Rivertown is where the high schoolers go. I worked with girls anywhere from 14 – 19.

For 10 weeks out of the summer, high schoolers help staff the kitchen, hospitality [they clean EVERYTHING] and grounds crews. These kids make up the Leadership Institute. This is the exciting part: I get to live with half of these girls this summer. Counseling the past 2 years was an amazing experience and I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the girls I was able to meet and become friends with. One thing that always bugged me was that I only had one week to build a relationship with the girls. I still keep in touch with a few of my campers, but only getting one week to build a relationship that those campers will consider worth keeping is difficult. And you do it for 9 weeks out of the summer. Constantly changing; constantly meeting. The great thing about LI is that I have anywhere from 3 – 9 weeks to get to know these girls. I’m excited about the friendships I’m about to make. I’ll also be helping out as a designer during the days.

Camp is FUN! Starts with an F, ends with an N and U are in the middle.

img_8502.jpg

p7264696.jpg

img_4353.jpg