Sunday, September 21, 2014

Unworn Underwear, Soggy Socks, and Other Tales from Camp Wamava

As I near the end of the alphabet, I find myself struggling to decide which Years Ago stories to share. This week's post will combine some of the funny stories we tell about the church camp we attended when we lived near Washington DC.

It all started when Addison was in third grade, staying with friends from church while Lauren was in the hospital in Philadelphia. We came home, and my friend Cheryl said, "Camp sign-ups opened up while you were gone, and I signed up Addison. You could cancel if you don't want her to go, but this way she'll have a good spot in the registration line." It was still March -- I hadn't even thought about summer yet, much less summer camp. There was no way that I could tell Addison no to camp, especially when her friends were going.

Fast forward a few months and I'm helping Addison pack for camp. We had all of her clothes packed, and at the last minute, I talked her into throwing in some tennis shoes and a couple pairs of socks "just in case." It turns out that there's recreation time at camp every day, and she needed to wear tennis shoes to play the games. It also turned out to be a rare rainy week at camp. I don't think there was any way that her shoes or her socks dried out from one day to the next, but she had fun anyway.

A few years later, Brennan was finally old enough to go to camp too. It was the summer of Lauren's transplant so I wasn't home to help him pack. I told Tim how I normally packed each day's worth of clothes in a separate ziploc bag so that they'd hopefully stay organized. When Brennan came home from camp, everything was still neatly organized. Each day, Brennan had taken a new set of clothes out of the bag to wear. When he came home from camp,  each bag still contained a single pair of underwear. Apparently, he hadn't seen a real need to change underwear so he just grabbed clean clothes out of the bags.

That was also the year that Tim learned just how nasty camp shoes can get. I didn't think to warn him. He called me on the way home from picking up Brennan to tell me just how gross his shoes were. In true mom fashion, I just asked why he had even bothered to bring them home.

Both of the big kids had such fabulous camp experiences that they talked me into taking them back to camp even after we had moved halfway across the country. At first I thought I was crazy to agree to driving them all the way back to DC and also agreeing to teach a Bible class at camp, but the real craziness was trying to find Addison the weekend before camp started. The youth group from our church in Arkansas had gone on a mission trip to New Jersey and then stopped in New York City for a few days of fun. They were driving back home on the same day we needed to check into camp. I stayed with a friend the night before (the same friend that got us into this whole camp thing) and needed to meet up with Addison before check-in time at camp. I left DC and headed north through West Virginia and into Pennsylvania. The youth group left NYC and headed south through Pennsylvania. After calling back and forth with their youth minister, we met during their lunch stop in the middle of nowhere. We made it to camp in time to check-in that afternoon, and all of us enjoyed an awesome week at Camp Wamava.

Ben and MeI'm sharing a "years ago" story (or stories) corresponding to each letter of the alphabet for the Blogging through the Alphabet challenge hosted by Marcy at Ben and Me. I often tell my children stories of things that have happened in our past, and now I'm taking the time to write down those treasured stories.

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  1. Oh Cristi! You are so much braver than I. I don't know if I would have driven across the country to attend camp and I am fairly certain that I would never share on my blog any story involving underwear! What a great idea for blogging to share those treasured stories!

    1. I'm not sure brave is the word that always comes to mind when I think of all these crazy adventures. We drove even further to go to the beach this summer.

      As for the underwear, it wasn't mine.



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