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What I Learned from Day Camp

Sometimes I need new motivators to homeschool, not necessarily because I’m thinking of throwing in the towel, but simply because sometimes I need a bit of encouragement. I got some last week when Maddie was at Day Camp and ironically enough, it came from Day Camp itself.

I think Day Camp was a great experience for Maddie and I wasn’t at all opposed to her getting that special time and creating some fun memories on her own with people I trust in a program I trust. But the hours were long and she would come home quite tired, sometimes at our expense. She would give the best hours of her day to Day Camp and we would get the leftover Maddie. That was tolerable for one week, I suppose, but it sure made me glad that for the majority of the year we actually get to experience her for her best hours and don’t have to turn her over to another adult and 30 peers for them to get the best of her each day.

I love her that much to want to keep her best hours for us. And give her my best hours as well. And just maybe it was the reminder I needed to propel us into the next school year…

Van Church

Sort of like church van, only different. Instead of being a van owned by a church, we will attempt to have church in the van tomorrow. I downloaded a sermon from Tim Keller and copied it to CD and made a new mix of music just for this purpose. Here’s the list:

Amazing Grace (Sufjan Stevens)
What Wondrous Love is This (Indelible Grace 2)
I Need Thee Every Hour (Indelible Grace 1)
Every Moment Singing (Joel Hanson)
O The Deep, Deep Love of Jesus (IG 1)
Approach My Soul (IG 1)
When I Hear The Praises Start (Keith Green)
God Be Merciful to Me (IG 2)
Come Ye Sinners (IG 1)
Creed (Rich Mullins)
O Love That Will Not Let Me Go (IG 1)
And Can It Be (IG 1)
El Shaddai (Michael Card)
Thy Mercy My God (IG 2)
Arise, My Soul, Arise (IG 1)
40 (U2)
The Church’s One Foundation (IG 1)
How Sweet The Name Of Jesus Sounds (IG 2)
Amen! Praise and Glory (Michael Card)

So – who wants to worship with us in the morning? We might have room for you on top of some bags…

A People Person

Who’s an introvert? I don’t see one around here anywhere. Here’s who I saw and/or spent time with this week (and was actually energized by it):

At church and/or at the wedding:
Jeff and Anne Jacobson
Danny and Stacy Cowell
Mark and Jen Heffentrager
Aimee Clarkson
Peggy Skattabo
Seth and Liz Barthels
Derek and Angie Strickler, plus Molly and Emma
Ben and Jess Dager plus Haven, Tim, and Libby
Kevin and Beth Allen plus their two kids
Karl and Alice Miller and their baby boy
Christina Trusty
Darnly and Larry Motter
Stacy Richardson
Elissa Long
Jess and kids again
Angie and kids again
Jenny Dordal!! (Boy, were my girls excited to see her)
Then Jess again for a walk around the Glen after 9…
Angie and kids again
Jess and kids again
Heather Rutland and Abby, Megan, Chris, and Steven
Jess and kids again
Jenny again
Angie and kids again
Jess and kids again
Sheri Underwood, Rylan, Zach, and Kenzie
Phyllis Stanley
Kate Kewley, Sean, and Timothy
Susan Simpson
Michelle Wood and her boys
Jeff and Aubrey Tell
Stacy Cowell (again, but more this time!)
Jenny again
Mark and Jen again (but more this time!)
Jenny for the last time
Angie and kids again
Sheri and kids again, but with Bobby this time (I went to college with Bobby)
Jess for the last time
Stacy for the last time
Jack and Shaunda McQueeney, Katlyn, Cole, and Cara (sadly, I didn’t get to see Kelsey…)
Jeff Beird
Tim and Amy Porter
Derek and Angie again
Angie and kids for the last time

(PS – If I left anyone off, it wasn’t intentional… I’ve lost brain cells from crying the past two days…)

Good visits, hard good-byes. Not sure leaving this bunch will ever be easy. Ever. But it won’t stop me from doing it again.

Next year, my friends. I’ll see you next year…

Megan the Troublemaker

I don’t really like to think of myself as a troublemaker, but tonight – tonight, I just may enter that category. There is a certain hotel we like to stay at every time we drive through Kansas because it has a nice pool and a pretty great little water slide. And when we were here last weekend, we had no problems with it whatsoever.

But tonight there is an enormous birthday party going on and the pool is so crazy crowded that it is unsafe. Last week, I had Truett stay out with my older two while I got the younger two ready for bed and I planned to do the same tonight. But I don’t trust any kids out there unsupervised right now, it is that crowded.

I’m bummed. This trip is really our vacation, you know, and we don’t shell out good money for a hotel that often. And if we were just going to end up in our room watching Bugs on TV, well, we could have done it for a whole lot cheaper down the street. My girls are bummed too because I made them get out a whole hour earlier than I originally told them.

I went to talk to the manager who is characteristically too busy. I’m not sure what I’m trying to accomplish by voicing my complaint, but I feel really compelled to do it anyway. So I left my room number and told the desk clerk that I expected a phone call.

We’ll see how great the customer service is here in a bit. Wish me luck. And the proper balance between grace and assertiveness (there is one, right???).

Camp Girls

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When we left Eagle Lake after the summer of 2001 to take up the cause at Glen Eyrie, I missed it a little, but not all that much. I’d spent the previous four summers either pregnant or nursing or both and Eagle Lake, while a great place to be, was not all that much fun for me then or really even for my very small children.

My kids are old enough now, though, that living at Eagle Lake would be a total blast for them and it was with those eyes that we walked around tonight, reliving the past and imagining what life would be like were we to be there now.

I know I romanticize things when I think of how great it would be to be back. I forget the 24 hour on-call status for Craig and that blasted radio that could reach him anywhere at anytime during anything. I forget that eating in the dining hall three meals a day with 200 loud campers gets pretty old after about a week. I forget that my children’s knees would look like they’d been run across a cheese grater after a summer of Eagle Lake, for the loose gravel and small feet that think they can handle it (just ask Grace and her “bwoody boo boo”). Sure, I forget.

But I also remember. Nights of solitude in the woods with cool mountain air and nighttime bugs and morning birds. 80+ college students who dote on your children (and your children just eating it up). Sneaking down the mountain during the week for Blizzards at the DQ. Laughing until your side hurts, crying until your head hurts, living like you never did before.

It is hard to think that the only time we may ever really spend at Eagle Lake in the future will be as parents dropping off and picking up our own campers, as I would love to spend just one more summer there. Just one. But it may not be meant to be and I need to figure out how to be okay with that. There is just no place like it in my heart and I don’t know that there ever will be.
Good-bye, Eagle Lake. I miss you again.

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About Transitions

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I think I’ve finally figured it out. Leaving this time is going to be harder than leaving last time. It isn’t that leaving last time wasn’t hard, because it was. But last time, in addition to the pain of leaving Colorado, we had the giddy anticipation of beginning Seminary. It was an emotional distraction, if you will.

And this time, it isn’t that I don’t like St. Louis, or won’t be glad to get back home to Craig, not at all. But this time, Seminary is a known commodity, so the giddiness is gone. And I’ve had a full year and two months to really know what we left and to have experienced true grief over the loss of that, more than I even knew when we left in April last year. So this time, I know exactly what I’m going to and I know exactly what I’m leaving. And that makes it that much more difficult.

We’ll go back, and life will take over again as life tends to do, and we’ll be happy to be there, happy to be in Seminary, happy to be with Craig. Really, we’ll be happy about it. But the leaving – the leaving is what is hard. I will miss my Colorado friends all over again.

Maddie’s First Day

We just dropped Maddie off at day camp and she is SOOOOOOOO excited to be there. As I went to check in, a counselor I’d never met before asked for her name and I told her and she said, “Ahh, the Dunhams. That’s a big name around Eagle Lake.”

*Sheepish grin here* Maybe that was what I was hoping for the other day. Somebody has remembered us. It probably sounds vain for me to say that I liked that, and I don’t mean to be vain, but I was glad to be remembered.

Thanks, new girl counselor. You made my day.

What a Day!

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First things first: nobody else got sick. Still hoping that remains the case the rest of the week. Thanks for praying for us.

Today was a whirlwind – hurried breakfast, rush to our old church (Village 7 Presbyterian), back to the Glen for Truett’s camp things, drive through Sonic for lunch on our way to Eagle Lake, register and drop off Truett, and rush back down the mountain to take Carrie and Grace to our friends’ house to play with their little ones while the rest of us made our way to the wedding. It was crazy, it was fun, and it was fully (and digitially) documented.

We’re looking forward to slowing the pace down considerably starting tomorrow. We’ll see how that goes.

As for today, the girls wanted to share their Father’s Day love with Craig:

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We bought him one ticket to a Cardinal’s game for today so he could enjoy that on his own while we were out of town. I just found out, though, that evidently, the ticket I bought him was for last night’s game, which meant he couldn’t get in today. I’m soooooo bummed out by this. So much for a good idea. Sorry, Craig. We really wanted you to enjoy that game today…

I’ve got more thoughts on transitioning brewing in my head, but am too tired to process them tonight. Maybe tomorrow. So, signing off for now, but not before posting these for my sister, since she can’t access my Flickr account…

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Here’s Truett waiting to get in the camp gate.

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Here’s Truett with his camp counselor, Mark.

Don’t worry about him. He’s going to have a great week! 🙂