Sun Showers Bring Beautiful Flowers!

Dear Parents and Friends,

Here we are at the end of the first full day of E Session, and what an exciting day it has been! As one of our shorter sessions, E session is full of first time campers and today was full of firsts!

At 8:30 this morning, we enjoyed our first breakfast together in the dining hall: cinnamon toast, scrambled eggs, bacon, pears, orange juice and water. At 10:00 AM we began our first morning of discoveries. These are the program areas that campers will attend 3 times over the course of the week to build skills or finish a multi-day project. Campers are placed into 4 of their top 8 activity choices (which they turned in yesterday), and for the most part everyone seemed very excited about their A-day placements. The groups I saw the stables and the farm seemed over the moon to be meeting new human and animal friends in their program areas. Those in the musical were excited to plan out the performance they will share with the rest of camp later this week. Everyone on the waterfront (kayakers, divers, junior lifeguards) was splashing around and having a great time soaking up all the AM sun!

At 1:00 PM we met our new table groups for the first time and chowed down on some delicious spagbol (spaghetti bolognese), salad, freshly baked bread, and sauteed farm veggies! At GV, we eat with our cabin groups for the first couple of meals, but as of lunch on the first full day we transition into eating with our assigned table groups. These include a mix of genders, ages and program areas to include a well rounded mix of 7-8 campers and 3-4 staff. Honestly, meal times include some of my absolute favorite moments of camp life. For those staff members who run a program and aren’t assigned to a cabin, this is their chance to really get to know a group of kids. And for kids, this is a chance to meet new friends from all over camp and mix with other age groups. There’s something really honest about sharing a meal with people, and often table groups grow very close. Personally, I enjoy the conversation piece the most, which can range from your standard favorite moment of the day to imaginative exploration and creative problem solving. Today at lunch, two boys at my table invented the “edi-bowl” which is a hollowed out piece of bread filled with something like pasta sauce, which they felt was a better (maybe just more fun?) way to eat the meat sauce.

At 2:00 PM, after wrapping up our second afternoon of singing in the lodge, we begin our first round of sign up skits, so that campers could know which activities to chose from for the afternoon. Sign up activities are free choice activities that campers chose on an individual basis each afternoon. Activities can vary from day to day, but certain programs are always offered: farm, horses, climbing, biking, water play, various crafts, etc.  After selecting their afternoon activities, campers settled down for their first rest hour, during which time they wrote letters, read, played quiet games and/or napped depending on the camper. At 3:30PM, campers came down for snack and to meet their afternoon activity groups. Soon after, we experienced our first thunderstorm of E session. Fortunately, most groups had already collected campers and headed out to activities so many of the indoor activities (Mill, pottery, tie-dye, beads, fine arts, etc.) carried on as normal. The outdoor activities shifted indoors until the storm blew over when we could carry on as normal.

At 6:15PM, we enjoyed our second meal as table groups (chili, corn bread, salad, corn, and pineapple) and our second evening of after supper activities. Just before campfire, we took a sibling photo (for the first time this summer!) and I was blown away by how many sibling pairs we have a camp right now! What an incredible shared experience to root sibling relationships as they grow and mature. Tonight’s campfire marked our second evenings of introductory skits. During the first two nights of camp, each cabin group gets up on stage to introduce themselves with a skit or song. Largely thanks to an extra day of planning, tonight’s skits were quite good. Ten cabins introduced themselves, but these are the ones that stick out in my mind: Rosebay girls acted out a typical day at camp while their counselors narrated speaking only in hashtag. 7th Heaven drew on their Outdoor Living Skills experience and introduced the audience to both the campers and various bathroom styles while out in the woods. Island Ford played Jeopardy and every girl introduced herself in the form of a question. Echo (our youngest boys cabin) was absolutely adorable as they performed a song & dance number.

As all the campers are falling asleep in their bunks for the second time this E session, I find myself thinking about how quickly this session will fly by. It seems they only just arrived, and already we are 1/4 of the way through the session! So many memories have already been captured, and so many adventures are brewing in the minds of our campers as they drift of to sleep… waiting for the right moment to come to fruition in the days ahead.