rainy days and salted frog eggs

     Summer days are flying by, and I am enjoying them all! I spent the last week with one of my daughters at GA camp. It rained every single day, but we still made some wonderful memories. Emily joined the horse ride in the rain while I visited with a friend. Two years ago I joined both of my girls at the same camp: Judson Baptist Retreat Center. That was Heather's summer after 6th grade so last summer of GA camp. This was Em's last one. Five giggly girls went with me from our church. I had fun French braiding hair and listening to their precious laughter.
     The focus of the camp is teaching the girls to have a heart for missions. A retired missionary from Indonesia shared each day about their experiences there. Our cabin's teenage counselor was a missionary kid whose parents had served for 9 years in Brazil. We rotated through crafts, recreation, Bible study and more. They played laser tag and played in the creek. They learned of different missionaries who share God's love with Olympic athletes. I learned along with the girls. The Bible study was about Paul, which fit perfectly with Emily's Bible Bee Sword Study.
Jesus Loves Me in Indonesian
     I texted the other girls' moms and even my mom throughout the week sharing pictures and bits and pieces of our week. Each day the girls watched one of the wranglers share what they called horse devotion. I sent a picture to the moms phones with the simple caption "horse devotion." My sweet mom texted me right back that all God's creatures needed prayer. Actually, this was a time not for prayer for the animals but for a type of parallel lesson. The wranglers demonstrated a characteristic or skill of the animals and compared that to us following Christ. This morning at the last horse devotion time before closing assembly, the sky got darker and darker and then it started pouring rain, again. We were wet a lot, but the girls didn't complain about the rain.
     Staff and volunteers plan months in advance for the three weeks of GA camp there each summer. I loved seeing how God worked things out that the staff didn't plan together, but God did. The main speaker shared about butterflies, how their life cycle can represent new life in Christ and how each butterfly has a cross design. I didn't know that, but I saw it and captured it in this picture of a moth outside our cabin. Another staffer planned an evening craft which had all the girls making butterflies. And the Bible Study leader gave each girl a memento to remember the lessons learned. Pictured on it- a butterfly.
     We came home today with bags of damp towels, dirty clothes, completed crafts, and memories to last a lifetime. My other two greeted me with hugs and requests to swim. I was ready for a long hot bath, but I jumped into the pool instead. We didn't completely clean out the pool before we all jumped off the porch, and Joseph picked on Emmy that she was swimming with frog eggs. When she got over her disgust at that idea, she joked right back. Since it is a saltwater pool, they could snack on salted frog eggs. There is almost no sweeter sound to me than my children's laughter.


  1. The camp sounds lovely. I was just thinking the other day that my kids have missed out on church camp. We always went every summer growing up, and sometimes I went to three different weeks. My son has been to Boy Scout Camp one week, but that was it. My daughter won't go, and I don't know - church camp just seems a lot less safe then it did 30 years ago unless I go along. Which is hard to do. Your post got me thinking again.

    Amy B

  2. Amy, I grew up going to camp a lot, too, several each summer. That fed my love of travel, but because of my husband's and my own experiences with youth camps we are very cautious about where we send the kids. When we first went to this camp (me with both girls) I recognized it as a camp I had enjoyed as a child, at different times both with and without my parents. Friends who are also a homeschool family live on the campus and agreed to watch out closely for my girls when I sent them without me. This year I was delighted to get to join my daughter again. Most things now we do tend to prefer doing as a whole family instead of sending the kiddos without us.

  3. An unusual but interesting camp! Looks like a lot of fun. I love the idea of relating the devotional teaching to an aspect of horse training.

  4. It sounds like a fabulous week! I always loved church camp. I love that this one is mission-minded, too. I completely agree with your last sentence. <3


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