Sorry! I'm slacking again! This camp session is going so fast! I can't believe the campers have been here almost two weeks already and a week from today, they go home. :( It always goes too fast when there is so much fun to be had!
I'm trying to remember everything we did on Wednesday. Our evening activity on Wednesday night was the Dating Game. We choose one camper or staff member to be our "bachelor" or "bachelorette". Then we have three campers or staff members on the other side of the divider to be eligible "dates." Everyone dresses up and our Rec staff Kari did an awesome job coming up with characters for everyone. She even wrote a short bio for all the participants. One camper was a famous writer who loves the color yellow. A staff member was a cowboy who a loves guinea pigs. Everyone thought it was fun to see the costumes and hear the stories. Then we ask questions such as "what is your favorite night treat?" or "If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be?" After a few questions, the bachelor or bachelorette choose their "date." Don't worry, it is all in good fun and there were no marriage proposals like on the Bachelor TV show! I would love to show you all pictures of this entertaining event...unfortunately, I made a rookie camera mistake. I was hosting and had someone else taking pictures for me...and I forgot to put an SD card in my camera! duh! I will try to find some pictures from someone else!
Yesterday, I had the opportunity to show some visitors around Camp. I love having the chance to tell more people about what we do at camp and talk about all the good things that are happening. The campers are so polite when we have visitors and they like to introduce themselves or ask questions about the new people. It is a good chance to use our good manners. I continue to see such nice things happening. There are so many good friendships that form at Camp Grassick and it is always nice to know that wherever we go in the world or whatever happens in the "outside world," we always have good friends at Camp Grassick who will love us and support us! (That is absolutely true for staff as well as campers!)
While I was walking around yesterday, I saw some soccer being played in rec. In crafts, they were making fish with tissue paper. They were in the water for swimming as well because it was a hot and humid day. Our guests really wanted to join them for swimming and I said the kids would probably welcome them! We went in the water for general swim too and it sure felt good to cool off.
Last night we had a a treasure hunt! Our rec staff Chloe planned and organized it and did a terrific job! She wrote clues that took the cabin groups around to different areas of camp. They had to solve their clue to figure out where they were going and then find the hidden clue at that area. At some of the areas, they had to complete a task before they were given their clue. In OT, they had to shoot baskets, led by some confused refs and sports fans. In crafts, they completed a cup stacking activity where they had to match patterns. The staff in crafts were dressed as famous artists! In rec, they had a bean bag toss and were also harassed by some crazy Grandmas that the campers are still talking about! At waterfront, mother nature had the campers dig in the sand to find her animals before they got their clue. Everyone was tired out from running all over camp! At the end, everyone got a free trading post coupon for their hard work!
After the kids were in bed, we had a little weather move through. Around 10:30 the wind really kicked up and there was a lot of lightning, but nothing more than that. It did knock our power out until about 5:30 this morning. Another system passed through around 2 AM, but I think almost everyone (me included) slept through that one. There was some rain, but no damage and nothing severe. We have been lucky with that this summer!
Tuesday was another busy day at Camp Grassick. I was in crafts for most of the day, so can't even tell you what happened in the other areas! It was tye dye day, so it was very busy. The campers chose their colors and patterns and then they worked on making necklaces while some of the staff dyed the shirts. It is a pretty messy process, so we do the dying to prevent your kids from coming home purple!
Since it was cooler, we didn't have general swim again today. We really miss getting in the water in the afternoons. Instead, we had the special olympics races during that time. Boy, do we have some fast kids! I'm glad they don't make me race. I would probably be embarrassed.
Our evening activity was the pajama dance. There is nothing cuter than kids in pajamas! Most of the campers love to dance and it is fun to change things up and wear our pajamas. I saw such nice things at the dance. I saw one of the older boys comforting one of the girls who was crying. I saw one of the campers stop dancing to go over and ask a cabin mate to join their circle so that everyone was included. I saw some very polite people asking others to dance. I saw one of the cutest hugs imaginable between two campers. It is just amazing to watch these young people showing kindness, compassion and friendship to one another. We are so lucky to be able to work with these wonderful individuals during our three week session!
I'm including some pictures of the races and the dance. I also tried to video part of the last song at the dance. I will try to upload it, but I make no promises!
Today started out as a very rainy, cool day. We had to do lots of indoor activities. In rec, they played some River Rat and musical chairs. It took me many years to find out what in the world River Rat was. It is a game something like musical chairs where everyone walks or dances back and forth across the "river". When the music stops, if you are in the river, you are out. It is a good rainy day game and everyone likes the music. In crafts, they were painting wood block photo holders. We will have to take pictures one day when it isn't pouring rain! Some of the swimming groups went fishing today. I heard a couple tales of "the one that got away." I think that means they are true fishermen!
The sun did eventually come out this afternoon and it turned into a fairly nice day. We decided not to go swimming though because it was still cool down by the lake. Instead, we decided to finish our Cabin Group Olympics. Our final task was to build a tower out of spaghetti noodles and marshmallows! It was interesting to see the different approaches and styles of building. Many of the campers really got into their work and there were some very creative towers! After tallying the judges scores, we learned that Cabin 22 won the tower competition. Cabin 22 and Cabin 8 tied for 1st overall!
Tonight's activity was Special Olympics. We can never quite finish them in one night, but we did a couple events tonight. First, we had the standing long jump. We had some really great jumpers. Some of them went as high in the air as they did forward I think! Then we had the softball throw. Wow! What arms these kids have! We ended with picking a few campers to try to get the ball to land on a giant frisbee. That is harder than it sounds because you need distance and accuracy! My favorite part about special olympics really isn't the events. I love that no matter what the kids do, everyone cheers. It doesn't matter if you jump 4 feet or 4 inches, everyone claps and yells encouragement. After each cabin competes, there are so many high fives and hugs to congratulate them. It is awesome to see so many good sports! It doesn't matter who wins, as long as you try and you have fun!
Weekends are a little different at Camp Grassick. We do not have our regular classes, so there is a lot more free time. On Saturday morning, we did have a few classes just to fill some time. Our lunch was leftovers which is always a big hit! I don't know if the kids like leftovers at home, but no one complains about them here. In the afternoon, we went swimming for the rest of the day. It was hot so the water felt really good. We took a break for trading post and then went back into the water.
For our evening activity, we had a movie and popcorn along with caffeine free pop. We watched the movie
Hello everyone! I'm updating late again today! We get so busy that I forget to sit down and do it! I'm going to do a 2 day post, but I'll make it up to you by adding some pictures!
Thursday was another great day at Camp Grassick! I'm not just saying that - things have been going really well and the campers are having so much fun! It was a little cooler, so the campers didn't have swimming lessons in the morning. Instead, they tried out some fishing. It seems that every time a cabin goes fishing, someone catches a fish. I can't believe how lucky these kids are!
We did go in swimming for general swim in the afternoon. It was warmer and the die-hard swimming fans are always willing to go in. It was also so calm on the lake, so lots of boats went out.
Our evening activity was Minute to Win It. We had many different games: bouncing a ping pong ball on a paddle, hitting a croquet ball into a can at the other end of the rec hall, popping balloons, stacked cups and a few other games. Everyone takes turns participating and it is fun to see the campers' faces when they succeed at a challenge.
Friday has been a strange weather day. It was cooler this morning and we thought it might rain, but as I write this in the afternoon, it is warm and sunny out. You never know about North Dakota weather! Our friend Tom was out this morning. He worked here for several years and still comes out to visit when he can. He was able to give each cabin group a ride on the pontoon. It is great to be able to do all these fun activities and give the campers a true summer camp experience!
I was taking some pictures this morning to put in the Elks newsletter and I was thinking maybe I would share a little bit about a typical day at Camp Grassick. The campers get up at 7 AM to get ready for the day. At 8, we have flag raising and sing our morning song before breakfast. The day is broken up into half hour sessions. Each cabin group has a session of swimming, a session of crafts and 3 sessions of recreation plus some times for free time and half an our blocks of free time to change in and out of swim suits. We have lunch at 12:15 and then have "rest hour." Everyone goes back to their beds to lie down and nap or rest. This really helps because we have long days out here and our bodies need some down time. After rest hour, we continue classes. Some campers also have therapies such as reading, speech or occupational therapies. During this camp session, these are individual and campers are able to work on their personal goals in these areas. In the afternoon, we also have trading post where the campers use the tokens they earn to purchase pop or candy. Our new picnic shelter makes a great spot to hang out in the shade, visit with friends and have a snack. Our general swim time is from 4:30-5:30 each day, and then it is time for supper. After supper, we have an evening activity until about 9:00 and then it is time to get ready for bed! You can tell why we are tired at the end of our full days.
Tonight's evening activity is a kickball game. That should be lots of fun. We are also hoping to have the first camp out tonight. Each cabin group gets to stay over night in our camp out area complete with a campfire, songs, s'mores and maybe even a ghost story! Sleeping in a tent may be not be as comfortable as their beds, but it sure provides a lot of memories!
Good Morning! I didn't get to do my Wednesday post last night, so I will update this morning on yesterday's happenings. It was another nice day at Camp. We are so fortunate when the days are sunny and warm because we spend so much time outdoors. I got to watch a little of the animal game in rec and it was as fun as I expected. I heard everything from lions to seals! It was perler bead day in crafts. This is where you take the tiny little beads and set them on pegs in different shapes. Then they are ironed into magnets. It was challenging for many of the campers, but it is good practice for those fine motor skills!
Since it was a nice day, we went swimming for general swim. Many of the campers get in to swim every day. There is always a game of staff versus camper keep away, a game of catch, or a few "sharks" in the water. The staff also moved the pontoon lift to a better location. Dan and our maintenance men launched the pontoon yesterday, so hopefully that means pontoon rides soon!
Our evening activity was a new one called "Cabin Group Olympics." The cabin groups worked together on different tasks. First, we did trivia. Each question was worth 2 points - one question was for the campers and one question harder for the staff. We found out that the campers knew more than the staff on many questions! One question was "Name the 4 Golden Girls." The staff at the table had no idea, but one of the Cabin 8 boys rattled them off with no problem!
For the next challenge, the non-counseling staff held paper bags with an unknown item inside. The campers had to reach in and feel it without looking. Then everyone helped guess what was in the bags. We felt tortilla chips, dry oatmeal, tree bark, perler beads and a cattail.
Then, we played a round of name that tune. Again, the campers rocked at this game! The hardest thing was keeping quiet so that everyone else didn't hear the answers! Unfortunately, we ran out of time for the last challenge. It's a good one though, so stay tuned! We have some ties right now, so everyone is anxious to do the last activity so we can see who won the cabin group Olympics!
The staff had a staff meeting last night, so everyone got to sleep in an extra hour this morning. I didn't hear any complaints about that! This mornings breakfast was some yummy long johns. Now everyone is off and running again. I will update again later to tell you what we do today!
It was another warm and beautiful day at Camp Grassick! In crafts, the campers made clay projects. There was everything from My Little Ponies to rainbows and lots of flowers, bowls and basketballs. In rec, there were lots of new games again today. In one game, the campers had to find their partner with their eyes closed by making animal noises. I missed that one, but I bet there were a lot of interesting sounds out on the rec field! They also played a version of tag in partners. Lots of running tires us out! Reading, speech and OT are all busy with sessions as well. It is so nice to hear the campers use good sentences and speech sounds.
We were able to get in swimming again today. It was a perfect day on the lake with hardly any wind, so lots of campers and staff went out today for rides in the kayaks, paddle boats and canoes. After supper, our evening activity was supposed to be relay races, but it was still really warm out. We decided to have an evening swim instead. The wind did come up, but we still had lots of kids and staff in the water this evening and the kids kept assuring me that they weren't cold. (They are tougher than we are!)
I didn't take any pictures today (which is unusual for me!), but hopefully we will get some to go with the stories I will have tomorrow!