Gordon is out at Sliding Rock with the Heigh Ho hill and CIT’s so I told him I’d start the blog since it will be a late evening at Dolly’s enjoying ice cream and then driving the bus back to camp. As I settle in to wind down at the computer, Pineview is “winding up”in the driveway with an impromptu dance party. They had a super evening as a hill- “Stoopin’ It”, which is a takes its title from sitting on the front porch stoop in the neighborhood. Although, this group didn’t do too much sitting! They played badminton in our backyard, made braided t-shirt headbands on our deck, walked on the slack line, kayaked in the canoe lake and swam in their lifejackets. It was a great evening activity for the older campers- capped off with ice cream before the dance party. I had cabin 4 and cabin 10 baking cookies in our kitchen- one of my favorite evening programs! We made homemade chocolate chip cookies and I’m a believer in letting the campers make them which usually means getting their hands (and the kitchen) a little dirty. They joined in on the Pineview gathering while the cookies baked and after cookies and milk they headed back to Hillbrook with an extra plate of cookies for the nurses to enjoy. Each Hillbrook cabin enjoyed a “cabin adventure”- generally doing a craft or game and making a dessert- cabin 1 made ice cream in a bag; other cabins had a campfire and roasted hocolate stuffed bananas or s’mores. We do enjoy food at Camp Illahee!
Speaking of food….dinner was delicious – chicken parmesan with fettucini noodles and green beans. We also had eggplant parmesan on the encore table. In addition to the salad bar, Dee made a Caesar salad to enjoy. Lunch today included baked potatoes with sour cream and cheese, vegetarian chili, and mini corn dogs (I have to admit; I like them….a lot of people won’t admit to liking corn dogs; maybe I’m a trend setter!) We also had tuna salad and pita bread on the encore table as well as orzo salad – something to please every palette!
One of my highlights today was greeting Gordon’s and my old friend Mary Lou who will be here with her daughter Honey until Thursday this week. Mary Lou and Honey will be taking photos and you are in for a treat! Mary Lou is a fantastic photographer and Honey is following along in her footsteps. Today at lunch, I looked over and Mary Lou was standing on top of a table to get a photo of Keeley, our birthday queen. She always seeks an original vantage point. I’ll never forget looking over a few summers ago and seeing her on the dining hall roof to get a bird’s eye view of gutter sundaes! It made the risk manager in me a little nervous, but someone has to be the camp mom after all! Gordon and I met Mary Lou and her husband, Dusty when we were all in college. We were in each other’s weddings a few years laters and have remained connected through camp. Mary Lou has been at Illahee the past eight summers taking photos while her daughter Honey has been a camper. We all have college and high school aged children now who are stepping into the camp counselor roles themselves. While Mary Lou shot photos in camp, Gordon went out with the trips climbing group to Looking Glass Rock taking photos and videos from up on the climb. They were able to get some climbs in before a mid-day storm rained them off the rock. I think that everyone except the climbers was happy to see the rain come in today; it was perfect, falling during lunch and cooling things off just in time for rest hour. Afternoon activities resumed with out a hitch!
It was a terrific day of activities. After the weekend’s opening day and changeover schedule it was nice to see a full camp day of activities begin. The mini 2 campers jumped right into the routine bringing a burst of energy. I think the older girls enjoy showing them the ropes; I watched a group of Sparks lead new campers to their first period riding class. Yesterday’s worship service included a message about finding your passion. The Pineview girls who led the service, challenged campers to make the most of their camp experience by jumping fully into activities so that they can discover talents that God has blessed them with. Our hope as we begin this new week in the Heavenly World is that each camper will grow in areas that lead her to be more passionate toward and fulfilled in life. Just to warn you, Gordon also took photos at Sliding Rock and Dollys. There are over 600 total, so check back!