Thursday, November 10, 2011

Why Load 'em Up and Drag Me 500 Miles Away?

I want it to be made known that I do not care for "Camp" in the 
youth camp junior camp teen camp family camp kind of way.

Never have.
Doubt I ever will.

Never wanted to be a camp counselor.
Never wanted to even GO to camp, despite the fact that my whole set of peers was thrilled to go.
The jump-in-the-lake, make-another-pen holder for mom, wear damp clothes thing. Ick.
Never loved the whole share-a-bathroom, share-a-cabin, share-team-enthusiasm thing.

At all.

Did I go to camp as a kid? 
Did I live to tell about it?
Did I hate it while I was there?
Did I want to go the next year?

It was a weird little set up, I guess. I enjoyed myself every year, but I never liked it.

So, when you tell me the E.x.t.e.n.d.e.d Family is getting together at camp...
I have a few things to wrap my brain around.

I loved the whole thing.
Well, not the 9 hour drive with the kids in the big van.
But, I did love the camp thing.

Someone else did the cooking
(and it was not typical camp food. It was good stuff.)
There were great activities for the kids to be involved in.
The arts and crafts room held cool things like leather working, 
jewelry making and ping pong ball guns.
The fall colors were a feast for this Florida girl's eyes.
The time at The Ladies Meeting was sweet and genuine.
The hike was strenuous  enough to make me talk is gasps, but not be achy the next day.

And the Crown Jewel:

We were celebrating Mom and Dad Dersch's 50th Wedding Anniversary. 
They had no idea what they were starting 50 years ago...Goodness! 

A pastor/military chaplain, three doctors, a speech therapist, an artist or two, mothers, fathers, engineers, musicians, writers, counselors, gardeners,  and a host of unknown surprises as the grandkids (and soon-to-arrive great-grand) continue to grow...

The 9 hours in the van is certainly a deterrent from us hanging out with that side of the family as often as we'd like. But, both Mark and I agree (as do our 8 kids) that the bonds forged with cousins is worth the hassle of getting to the cousins. The time spent with an aunt or an uncle who is interested in what you're doing and where you're headed is invaluable. The same story (in a new version, possibly) from a grandparent creates connections that don't form so readily over the phone or email.

Yup. Camp has redeemed itself.


  1. What a great story, Dorothy! So glad your family had this time together making wonderful memories and creating and deepening relationships!

  2. I guess it just took awhile to grow on your Dorothy!! But I'm glad you ended up enjoying your time. It looks like fun!!