Saturday, July 20, 2013

Quick camp report

When we got back last night Bogdan kept walking around our cluttered little apartment touching everything and saying "wow." It does feel good to be home!

The thirty-second version of how family English camp went is that it was very wonderful and very exhausting. Will and I taught a whole lot, and all of us made lots of new friends, while spending time with old friends, too.

I'm stealing one of Ellie's photos here, because I haven't even looked through ours yet:

Martha and Marianna
Martha and I taught preschoolers at camp. She befriended little Marianna in our group, and the photo above is just about the story of our whole week after that. We actually had several little ones who wanted to run to their mothers non-stop, but Marianna was the queen of that... at first. The one thing that really did hold their attention all week was the Bible stories. Many times we felt like we were just going crazy, but when we would settle them for the story each day, they were just glued to it. That part was an amazing answer to prayer!

A glimpse of our daily schedule:
7:30 Staff fellowship
7:45-8:45ish Staff meeting (We usually had Bogdan and Jaan with us.)
9:00 Breakfast (wake and dress our girls fast, just before that)
9:45 Morning meeting
10-11:00 Bible time for kids/English reading (Bible study) for adults
11:15-12:00 First English class (huge mental shift for me, from preschool Bible to upper-advanced adult English)
12:15-1:00 Second English class
1:00 Lunch!
2-5:00 Free time and optional activities
5-6:00 More Bible time and craft for kids/English conversation for adults
6:00 Dinner
6:45 Evening activities/Worship/Teaching/Kids story and craft
10:00 Quiet (hah!)
11:00 Bed

It might not look like a packed schedule--see all that "free time"?--but it was! The free time was for campers. As teachers and parents we were planning lessons, trying to get our younger children to nap, spending time with people, and shuffling kids to special activities and going to them ourselves. It was all amazingly intense. The intentional focus on building relationships was the best part, though. Several team members shared that there were many times when they felt like they just couldn't go another step, but God gave them strength; the whole week was like that for me.

Then, after the time out in the country, camp didn't end there. We continued in Odessa. Without catching a breath, we all came back and jumped into three days of sightseeing and fellowship with the campers on their own turf.

That's probably the absolute minimum that I can share, and still give you a picture of what camp was like. Hopefully I'll have time for more soon. Thank you so much for praying for us while we were there.

Another Ellie photo: the preschool group at skit night
Please keep praying! Pray for the second camp, going on now. Many of the people we got to work with are back at it. Pray for our family; we all came back sick and tired. I actually have a camp planning meeting to go to this afternoon, too, for day camp here. That camp will be August 5-9. And Will won't be taking part in that, because he'll be working on our move to Kherson: more to pray for!


Caleb Suko said...

I know the feeling, camp is always great but you can really come home feeling tired. I'll be praying that you guys make a quick recovery!

Mom said...

Just reading about camp leaves me exhausted...praying for recovery and endurance. We love you.

Baba Julie said...

Thanks for the great update! I have already gotten several VERY positive reports! SO grateful that it went so well for all of you and for the campers! Praying for much fruit for your labors! Rest up now for your next big adventure! Love to all of you!