Saturday, August 15, 2009

coming home.

so sorry i havent written in days [weeks...] but life is moving fast. we'll be leaving castaway club wednesday morning. well, most of us; steph left wednesday, lindsey annerino left friday, christine leaves tomorrow (sunday) and the rest leave wednesday.

at the beginning of the summer i would have never expected that i would be so sad to leave. from being in a place where i couldnt believe i made this decision; a place where i felt lonely and not a part of the group to how i feel now. sitting in the west wing with everyone, people chatting, some sleeping, some on computers... and being fully and wonderfully content. feeling like these people are my friends, my family. to LIVE with people, work with people, share with them for 3 months is a wonderfully challenging and yet rewarding and growing experience.

i have learned so much from everyone, and have learned both who i do and who i do not want to be. i have learned waht it means to live and to love in a different way, and to be understanding of differences, failures, shortcomings, and strengths.

these people have been so incredible that i wouldnt pick a different or better intern group -- good or bad.

so for those that supported me when i was struggling in the beginning... thank you. this has truely been an experience that i wouldnt change for anything.

see you next week, mitten. i cant wait to be home. but... really... i also can wait. i want to be here while also being there.

can i?

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

love everyone; all the time.

read this tonight about the PA shooting at the gym, and it was just suuuuch a clear plea to me to LOVE everyone, pay ATTENTION to people.

you walk by people -- you see them [or else you'd run into them].... but do you LOOK at them? do you acknowledge them? do you really SEE them?

there is a link in the article to read the diary of the guy.... broke my heart. and in the end to see that he has some sort of faith, and the knowledge that salvation is not built on works.... that he feels and knows and articulates the exclusion he feels and wants to know WHY -- that he wants to matter, to be loved, to be noticed....

love: notice: care: say hello to a stranger.

because this is not how its suppose to be -
this is NOT shalom.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

session three... excuse me, what?

third session started today. and again i say it; excuse me, what? so weird to think that 2 years ago i was the new summer staffer in the bakery, not knowing what i was doing, and now im training someone to do that very thing. my new summer staffer, melanie, is great. im excited to see how we work together and see how things work out.

side bar, the boys are OBSESSED with settlers of catan. i feel like i am back in the days of hekman, james regan, timotei, etc playing it all the time at every social function for YL at home. i rejected it then, and i reject it now.

its kind of hard to update right now. lets see. the last week was ok... it was a struggle to feel like it was still week 2 in the bakery when in actuality it was week 4. i felt like i was still teaching, and thats hard to do when you feel like you've been doing that for 3 weeks already (oh, wait, i have.) but, last session is over and we're onto the next session.

its a very weird to be here now. we have 11 weeks behind us, and i feel like everyone is tired. its hard to show grace at this point in a lot of different ways; to each other, summer staff and work crew, a new assigned team... i just hope that we are able to give everyone a chance and enjoy the last 3 weeks of people being here and enjoy getting to know 100 new names. we have a very diverse group this session, vs the essentially all white last two sessions, and im excited for that. the diversity makes it feel a bit more like ann arbor, and that is nice.

i am also getting excited to come home, while still enjoying being here. i am excited to be looking for jobs, even though its quite scary. i've applied for 2 this week, both in DC. im not really thinking about location too much; beggers cant be choosers. i will think about the distance aspect if the opportunity presents itself.

im excited to go downtown, see friends, see my parents, and see my josh. yet - while all these things are true, i am excited to invest for the last few weeks and really try and make the most of these people and this experience.

yesterday on my day off i hung out with christine mostly; we went to sunflower hill (a coffee shop) and she worked on her support letters (she's going to be a year-long intern at Sharptop in GA) and i did some e-mails and finished a coverletter. then we went to boeke's (the former waterfront director that christine knows well) and i helped her stuff her support letters while watching everybody loves raymond. it was a great day to just spend with her doing menial tasks but having good company. came back and did intros with the new summer staff/work crew, went out on the new boat to break it in a bit, and then joey, christine and lindsey bray and i went to eat. we ended up at perkins and shared a lot of laughs, it was really fun. a great day off in my book.

now off to do a few things solo.... im excited for some alone time :) ive realized how precious it is and how much i need it.

Monday, July 20, 2009

life is at its best in the west wing..... or flying cloud.

quick post, since i have no business posting.

kate west has been re-located to the flying cloud (my room), because her room is now the issolation room for those with H1N1 type symptoms. its been great. except she is way more responsible with going to bed than i am. i should be asleep. she is. i am not. shes great and im glad she is my bunk mate.

i went parasailing again tonight, this time with alicia, and it was awesome. she was in issolation for H1N1, but she feels fine. hopefully i didnt contract it. if i did.... love you all.

tonight after work crew visits (which really shouldnt be stressful but somehow always are) came up to the intern lounge and did the orange pop taste challenge (sunkist beat slice and fanta in all races) with jose, mads, jj and joe. we just laughed and told stories...... those are my favorite times being here. i often feel really left out of great experiences, especially in the camper realm, since i never see them. so i miss out on great experiences, like the ones that people are going to have with capernum kids (kids here with special needs). but those are the times, with the interns (...and property staff...) that i love most - relaxing, talking, growing, and sharing life.

days like these make me want more time here.... make me want more time to go deeper and have evenings like this.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

ann arbor: i miss you.

nothing much to say..... the days are starting to run into each other.

i simultaneously feel like i havent been here long and that ive been here an eternity, but the fact remains that i'll be home in about a month.

i struggle with people's use (including myself) of the word "intentional."

definition: of or pertaining to intention or purpose.
definition of "intention": an act or instance of determining mentally upon some action or result.

ok. so we (interns) have had, at various times i think, discussed being "intentional" with each other, meaning getting to know each other. i have recently began to question the INTENT behind it though.

is it because that's what we're SUPPOSED to do? is it because thats what people say we should do, or Greg recommends? Are these last 4 weeks truely going to be the best? I don't know. Because i think there is a lot of confusion on the INTENT of our intentionality. i think its bull that we extend ourselves to others to get to know them if we arent really interested in knowing them. so i guess the question is, do i really want to know these people, and why.

i think that this whole experience has been different than i expected. its been a lot harder than i thought in the deep community that is promoted aspect. i guess it has been a while since i've had to get to know people, ask questions, seek out who they are at the core, and maybe i'm out of practice. perhaps i havent done that in a while at home because i was content with the community i was a part of. but now i have been put into a different community and it INVOLVES effort. so maybe that was just my own fault initially.

i think that the core of it as i said before is just WHY do you want to get to know people. and if its because you "should" -- then dont. i think thats bullshit. i think there is so much to learn from people in a situation like this, and there is too much comfort in surface relationships and too much fear in going deep. and maybe its not even fear -- maybe its just content. content in the life you lead, the friends you have, etc. and thats fine. but i guess i just keep going back to this Henry Ford quote that some girl wrote in her paper in my PS 327: Community Organizing with Greg Markus, the best professor ever to walk the campus of the unversity of michigan (sorry ralph lovers) -- that if you would have asked someone around 1900 how to get from point A to point B faster, they would have said build a faster carriage. they wouldnt have said "build a model T, duh." it took trying sometohing new and being willing to take a risk.

and maybe thats to broad of a step or to wide of a leap, from Ford to detroit lakes, but, thats ok.because really.... i think it is all about trying new things and taking risks (which i am often, and i'll be the FIRST to admit, scared to take.)

i want to learn from people, i want to have relationships. i'd love to know who my friends will be in 10 years. id love for it to be some of these people. and maybe thats just me, and maybe its nieve.

but i want i want i want, i need i need i need, gimme gimme gimme.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

oh hello.

sorry it has been a while since my last post of substance (not that talking about Joe Lindgaard isnt substantial...). a lot has been going on, and ... well.... i dont know. just havent had time to type.

the last time i wrote was week 4 of 1st session. it is now the middle of week 2 of 2nd session. courtney has left (much to my dismay) and my new summer staffer's name is Bronaugh (pronounced Bro-nah). She's from Ireland. Not "Oh, I moved here 6 years ago but I'm originally from Ireland" but like 2 weeks ago she was in ireland, and in 2 weeks she'll be back in Ireland. Things are going ok. She is pretty quiet and that makes conversation difficult. I am also learning new ways f leading and teaching, as she has been a little slower to pick up on the routine of htings. Not to mention, she is not used to our unit ofmeasure so that slows things down, too. But, we are still getting our work done. The men this session is a bit different. I no longer have 2 long days, 1 medium day, and 3 short days but now 6 days that are all pretty much the same legth. which, has its pro's and cons. I get ode about the same time each day, but now no really hsort days anymore.

Saturday in the evening all the interns went out on the boat to watch firewoks. we had some lovely snacks and fun times. we even swam afterwards. here are a few pictures:

i was excited to try out the fireworks setting on my camera. it was a fail. this is on the underwater setting. go figure.

everyone! (except courtney and katya)
i just love it.

what else. last week Wednesday i felt really gross. i took 3 naps, woke up to serve dessert at camper dinner, and went back to bed at 9pm. i had a headache and i felt like i was going to throw up. never a good combination. but i slept it off and felt fine the next day.

i now have 2 braces for my carple tunnel infested wrists, which i wear only at night. but, at some point in the night, i am still asleep and get annoyed with the left one and rip it off, because its on the floor every morning.

community stuff is ok.... I feel like we kind of all put on a good face of "yeah this is great" but we arent really digging deep with each other. i dont really know what the answer for that is, except for reaching out to people when they reach out to you, and have everyone be intentional about that. its so easy to just do our jobs and sit around the lounge after rather than trying to have a meaningful conversation with someone or at least hear more about their story.

we talked about that last friday night (sorry, a bit out of order) when jimmy, bj, jose, mads and i went to go see "away we go". it was a really, really great film and afterwards we went to kroll's (a diner in fargo.... oh, yeah, we had to go to fargo to see it.) we had great conversation spurred by the great maddie deegan who i feel like always asks great questions. we talked a lot about this community stuff and how we can be actively working toward making it everything it can be.

JJ alberhasky is here this week, and doing special music which is innnnncredible. the concert is tomorrow night and i hope/expect JJ and Jose to each record it in their mediums (sound and film, respectively.)

oh, and to go back again, washtenaw county was here last week. i think i mentioned that at some point, but let me expand.

so first, they were the first group to get here and a cried when the bus arrived. i had been saying i was going to cry, but i didnt think i actually would. i got to spend some one-on-one time with a few leaders (i felt like time was so crunched and i didnt want to be taking away time that people could be spending with kids) and it was soooo good for my heart. to talk about things and compare them to the past and have people know what that means. for people to know my heart and know my hurts was so great.

but, at the same time, i realized the value of this experience here with interns because i have a chance for NEW people to know my heart and hurts, and maybe even people that would have a different insight on them than i would, or people from home would. its just hard because things like that dont always come up in casual conversation and its not an easy thing to be like "hey, heres my crap and why i'm broken, wanna listen?"

speaking of being broken. that has been the theme of bob (davidson)'s talk this week, or at least what i've seen -- being broken, and how we are all broken. last night bob showed a slideshow of a bunch of post-secret type cards that kids had made in cabin time and so many of them were about feeling like they werent enough, which is something i have struggled a lot with and a good friend of mine has constantly tried to combat with telling me "would you shut up -- you are enough, you are God's chosen, His beloved!" It has lead me to wondering how my own experiences can translate into helping and loving kids (whether in YL or not) because of that commonhood of a struggle i have had and continue to battle.

2 weeks ago, there was a post on "the wall" (a wall that the 1st speaker, Annie, had and now Bob has too, which provides an opportunity for kids to draw or write a response to the week and post it on the wall) that i feel like is fitting to my life, an this story and sharing:

this was after opera, where they used a song with that lyric (thats not my name, thats not my name) and i thought it was just very cool.

anyways, now my fingers are tired.

Monday, July 6, 2009


couldnt ann arbor be closer to detroit lakes? i mean, its BASICALLY detroit, right? i actually learned it used to be called Detroit but that Detroit, MI and Detroit, MN were too similar and mail went the wrong place so someone had to switch (and it wasnt going to be the big daddy, clearly.)

i miss you. and if you are reading this, i probably mean you. i miss your familiarity and your knowledge of me and my heart. washco here last week was GREAT -- now everyone just take shifts and come every 4 days, and it'll be great :)

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Joe Lindgaard.

There is a guy here who's name is Joe. He is the waterfront director. He loves my cookies and gives them to the guys at McLaughlins (the boat place) to bribe them to get his boat motor back. he just burped, and it DID smell, buy its ok because we are still friends. he is also a stud muffin that loves jesus and is a bachelor and looking. if you're interested, let me know because he is super hot. hes also looking for a new car. so if you have a subaru for sale, let me know and i'll tell him (as long as its not a wagon, but if its a WRX wagon we may still consider.)

i love joe.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

quick bullets

  • this entry will be in bullet point format
  • carpal tunnel - i perhaps have it. i have been complaining about it a lot (sorry interns) but its a scary thing. the tip of my left thumb and index fingers are numb, and my entire left middle finger is numb. the tips of the same 3 fingers on my right hand are a tiny numb. i scoop 250 cookies a day, and cut cake almost every day -- repetitive motion'll get ya. trying to figure out a doctor visit tomorrow for sometime soon
  • session one is over saturday, and 2nd sesh starts sunday. im pretty nervous. i've grown quite attached to court and i like her a lot, and it'll be really hard to train someone new, make new jokes, and just.... get used to her not being here. sad.
  • its getting hot. good thing i have a fan jerry-rigged to my bed
  • WASHTENAW COUNTY YOUNG LIFE is coming sundayyyyyy. im beyond excited
  • organization happened in my room tonight. i got in an organizing mood, and it was great
  • young life staff is once again being considered. oh no. talked to ellen, one of the work crew bosses, about it and im going to be praying more intentionally about it.

prayer requests: for my intentionality in prayer; for time to MYSELF to sit, reflect, and just BE; for my hands/fingers; for the change over transition of sesh 1-->2


Wednesday, June 17, 2009

rain, rain, go away.

it has been raining the past few days here at camp, which is a big bummer for me. not so much for me personally... i live and work in the same building so i dont have to go outside. but, for the leaders and campers here this week (which includes 3 fabulous friends of mine that make me smile daily) because i know how hard it can be to lead and be positive when the weather is less than optimal. I hope that the rest of the week is better for them.

im going to try and keep it cronological, although that may not be achieved.

work has been going really well. Courtney is great, and we still have a lot of fun. here are some pictures of us working:

we spend about an hour in the freezer (with breaks of course) once a week cutting ice cream for big cookie (we actually did that today, too). We take 3 gallon tubs of vanilla ice cream and with a huge knife cut it into 10 slices, one for each big cookie, which ends up looking like this:

a few days ago, we found these hats in the linen closet and decided to have some fun.

this is us looking like awesome bakers

this is me being cute in cooler 1 (we have 3)

this is liz and jiwon, the AM cooks (they got chef hats)

this is courtney stiring pancake batter that we made (YL camp is so legit that we make our pancake batter from scratch.... get some.)

our dining hall and pits WC kids have been working hard, so court and I made them cupcakes in ice cream cones as a "thanks, and keep up the good work" treat from the kitchen!

its started to get warmer here at camp, so i got my fan out of my trunk and hooked it up to my bed:

to the right is my fan, duct taped to the ladder of the top bunk. its relatively ghetto, but 100% effective. I also have it plugged into 1 of 3 extention cords for one outlet..... in 1 outlet, i have the following plugged in through a series of extention cords:
  • phone charger
  • computer
  • alarm clock
  • reading lamp
  • fan
im pretty sure that cant be safe, but i havent blown a fuse yet so im ok with it.

last saturday was my first day off in a while (and my first official day off on my official day off, saturday, instead of some random day) and in the AM Joey, Christine, and Steph and I went to Fargo. Joey had to get fitted for a suit for his friend's wedding, and the girls went shopping at the mall. We then enjoyed a variety of lunch options (Taco Bell, Wendy's, and I got Qdoba) and Steph also got her nose pierced, which looks awesome.

We came back from Fargo and went to Ben's grandparent's lake house, which is just down the road a bit, and also on Pelican Lake. We went out on the boat, came in, and went back out but this time girl on the boat and the boys (now including Jose and Ben) went sailing.

sunday was day 1 of our first week of young life, and it was quite the day. court and i have finally gotten a rhythm that allows us to get work done fast... too bad we only have a week and a half left to do it! at the end of the day was the water show, which is every night 1, to show campers all the water related ammenities you can do here at castaway. one of them is parasailing... and i got to go last sunday! it was my first time. here are some pics:

me, katya, and lindsey b on the parasail boat

the captains of the parasail boat, joey (standing) and ben

the view once we lifted off the boat.... i like it with pud waving and joey looking happy that we are up in the air/we didnt screw it up

a self pic is a hard thing to do when you are scared you are going to drop your camera because you are 200-250 feet in the air.... but this is the best one of me and lins.

a view as we were flying...
sunset is the perfect time to be 200 feet in the air!

some cool water we saw as we went around the lake

trying to give you a vantage point of how high we were

then today is the famed "day that never ends". it is also my favorite food day: pancakes for breakfast, tacos for lunch, and burgers for dinner with big cookie. there is also tableau (where kids get to see all the work crew and summer staff dressed up as, for this session, 80's, and then they go back to their cabins and dress 80's for dinner and the rest of the night.) then there is the opera, which is a program thing with skits/singing, then there is a dance followed by ice cream sundaes. its a longer day for me because of the sundaes.... we made 375 of them from 9-9:30 tonight (there are 356 campers/leaders) and then i just threw away about 100 of them. haha. such is life.

but this post has taken about 2 hours because of all the pictures and the slow internet in the windjammer, and this is the earliest i have gone to bed in 3 days, so im taking advantage of it.

hope you are well :)

shout out to joey....

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

update soon

hi there followers.....

sorry it has once again been a week. this update is more of an "update coming soon", where i will give you a sneak peek at whats to come. pretty much this is a movie trailer.

the next post will include:
  • story of parsailing (with pictures, and shout out to joey who i didnt know read this.)
  • me/courtney "working"/working (with pictures!)
  • me falling on my butt at carnival tonight
  • how i get too much mail.
  • how i know how to make bomb-tastic peach cobbler now
  • my failed attempt at attending the flea market

ok, i might not write about all of them but.... there you go.
until tomorrow (i hope...)


Thursday, June 11, 2009



its funny because whenever i am about to write in here, i'm thinking that i just wrote.... but look, its been about a week.

i dont know that i have much to catch up on, though. i've worked everyday since my last post. the last day of week 1 was monday, so we had our first 'turn over'. it was actually not a bad day. we had to deep clean the baker which means.... move EVERYTHING and clean it. then tuesday was day 1, and yesterday was day 2. i worked for 14 hours yesterday.... it was super crazy. today was supposed to be a shorter day but it ended up still being pretty long. but, thats ok. monday night we all hung out for the night and didnt do much. some night we had a dance party, and this is what jimmy wore/brought:

it was great. he was aladin and brought apu.

other than that, just been workin workin. its already almost week 3 which is loco... things are going well. haha, i feel bad and like i should be writing more but really nothing much is going on.

tonight i went to go take a picture to turn into a postcard, and took this, also:

life is pretty beautiful here! saturday is my day off and if you would like to be included in my happy fun list of people i need to call, call/text me and tell me so!

OH, and Kate and i got coozies at hobby lobby (which, MC just texted me and told me that there is a new one in Canton.... amazing!) and made them for everyone. Joey and Ben have named the boat they drive "S.S. Lemondrop" and gave us each names (mine is Sugar Bubbles, others include Sparkle Kitten, Moon Beam, and Captain Sun Dust) and so we wrote those on the coozies and gave them to everyone, super fun.

ok, that was random enough for the evening! im tired.... going to bed!


Saturday, June 6, 2009

three weeks!


tomorrow is the 3 week mark, and it hardly seems like it. it simultaneously feels like too long and also not long enough. weird.

this week has been crazy... a 13 hour day, a 12 hour day, but today was a great day -- only 5 1/2! so great. and tomorrow should be relatively short, also.

after work today, Kate (the retail intern) and I went to Fargo to go to HOBBY LOBBY. oh man. i wish i had one closer at home, its way better than Jo Ann (and saying that is nearly blasphemy.) I got some stuff to decorate and give to my summer staffers throughout the summer (i know, i'm cute.) we also went to scheel's again and i got crocs (which is basically a sin to me, but i had to for work... my tennis shoes were not going to cut it for the whole summer.) we came back and then i helped with dessert for camper dinner (Courtney did it for staff dinner in my absence. she was also supposed to help with camper dinner but wasnt there.... oh well.)

Then comes the sad part of the day. i made 350 desserts for 406 people. which should have been more than fine, seeing as the past two days i made enough for 410 people and 50-60 came back to the kitchen. well, not so today. there werent enough. luckily, we had cut extra angel food cake so we just had to throw them together. well, the work crew girl that asked for more when we didnt have any got to see me freak out and run to go make more. well, she thought i was freaking out at her, when, REALLY, it was just at myself. apparently she had tears in her eyes. i appologized in person and then i also wrote her a note and gave her some cookies but i think i really hurt her feelings and i feel terrible. theres nothing i can do. a good lesson in trying to take short cuts (which really, was just trying to be efficient) and also on how to keep my cool in front of the work crew and summer staff.

good lesson.... still feel terrible.

came back upstairs and started looking for jobs, and realize i dont know how to do that. but, i did go to and look at their listing and found 2 promising jobs so im going to apply in the next few days.

happy sunday! missing AA... cant wait for my washco friends to come in just a few short weeks! yay.


Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The Summer Staff is hereeeee

Sorry its been a week almost since i wrote last! things have been crazy around here. work week ended well and everyone left on Sunday. After they left, Maddie, Alicia, Steph and I went to downtown DL and there was an art fair type thing going on.

It was slightly reminiscent of the A2 Art Fair yet on a much, much smaller scale. Went to the only craft store within an hour, Ben Franklin (thats the name if the store.) It was semi ok. I'm excited to go to Fargo soon to go to Hobby Lobby.

Sunday we also went to LuAnn (the office admin)'s house and played softball and had dinner. My softball skills left a lot to be desired... apparently my K-8 playing of the sport have rubbed off in the last 8 years. haha. Monday had the day off.... and I..... don't remember what I did. Did a lot of hanging out. Hmmm. Thats disappointing, I dont remember.

Tuesday summer staffers came, and that was good. Not much food to make, so another day of just kind of hanging out.

Today was first day of work with summer staffers. My summer staffer is Courtney, and she is from.... drum roll please....


There are 2 summer staffers from Michigan... both are from GR, both work in the kitchen! So great. Its nice to have people from "home" around :) We made cake, cookies, and corn bread. It was very weird to be a teacher and have to be the one that new what was going on, knew the answers to questions, etc. but, it went well!

Tomorrow is the biggest day of the week, with a lot to make. Its also the first day of getting up at 6am. That will be the hardest part for me I think. I am not a morning person (in case you didnt know) so I will be asking the Lord for strength and excitement to get up each day and be excited to see the world before the sun is up!

haha. and to leave you with, some pictures I took when the sun was going down on Sunday night:


Friday, May 29, 2009

The Bickery becomes the Bakery once again.

When I worked here 2 summers ago, the intern (Nate) and I re-named the Bakery the Bickery, because we bickered all the time. but now, its returned to being the Bakery.

This is the bakery, aka the dungeon in which i work. to the far left you will see the counter in which i regularly work. above it is a collage of pictures i made with all my friends and family on it! its graduation heavy because.... well, some of the best pictures are from that day! to the right of that is the hobart, the machine i use... all day. its a 60 qt bowl, so i can make a lot of stuff. such as enough bread dough to make 17 loaves of bread, or cookie dough to make 100 cookies. then to the right of that all hanging up are the attachments for the hobart, along with whisks, spatulas, and a variety of things that I never used but apparently need to live in the bakery. below that are cookie trays i use and bread pans, also. the counter on the far right holds a mini hobart and behind it is a microwave. the counter in the front right (with 2 bags of bread on it) isnt utilized for much but storage and holding the recipe book. above it though is the white board i write all the days tasks on, and my calendar is there also. in the close left side, you can see in bottom corner all the sugars i have (white, brown, and powdered.) above it is a rack of all the dry ingredients i use all the time (baking soda, vanilla, chocolate syrup, etc. i guess some of those arent dry, so pantry items we'll say.)

this is a closer picture of where i spend.... 70% of my time. that counter is where i work most of the time. thats why i put the pictures above it (as well as a michigan alumni bumper sticker from Josh!). shelves of tons of measuring cups, and those white trashcans under the counter? flour. have to have trash cans to hold the flour. love it.

this is the area where most of the cooking goes on... the left is all counters, the right front is the tilt skillet where they make meat and stuff, and then the griddle where they make mostly breakfast items, and also peppers for philly cheese stakes. back right (with the red handles) are the ovens, which is pretty much all i use in this area.

this is the "sailboat surprise" that happened for dinner tonight. isnt it pretty? it looks really sweet but guess what it is? -- an ice cream bar with it's stick pulled out. Brian thought he ordered ice cream sandwhichs but really he ordered bars. but after a colaboration of Brian and Deb (the assistant cook) and I, this is what we came up with! i was impressed.

Here is Kenny (here for work week, and has done summer staff like 5 times), then Alicia, the AM cook that goes to Hope, Deb, and Maddie, on of my roommates and she goes to school in Santa Barbara who is the PM cook.

Ok, after all these pictures I'm tired and wanting to go to bed. Things are going well. Nothing is normal anymore, but normal is starting. its weird to have nothing familiar and that feeling is kind of catching up with me. Nikki told me week 2 would be the hardest. she's kind of right. I miss home but am also content here.... its a weird feeling and i wish i could have a taste of home... a certain taste.

oh, and Ray Donatucci is our speaker for work week. how great. I love Ray Donatucci. I took a notebook to club last night to take notes so i could hang on to every word he says, haha. we are going through the apostle's creed and last night a point he made was that the single commandment that appears the most in the bible (365 times... once for each day of the year?) is "do not fear" and what is most commonly following that command? "I am with you." Ray pointed it out this way, which i write and posted above my bed --

I AM with you -- I AM, the name the God says to call himself, is with you.

I am with you -- I am here, now, with you. Its not that he used to be with you or will be with you... but he IS with you.

I am with you -- i am here, now with you... not ahead of you, not in heaven away from you -- i am with you.

I am with you -- you! not just him, or her, or them -- but you! You are God's beloved, he pics YOU. (thanks again Kenny...)

just cool.


Thursday, May 28, 2009


sorry its been a while. my life is:

7:40a - wake up
8a - 12:30p - make baked goods
1 - 2p - make more baked goods
2-5p - clean kitchen
6 - dinner
6:30 - pits from dinner
8 - club
11 - go to bed

pretty standard. i'll talk pictures of camp in the next few days and take you on a tour :)


Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day Weekend


Sorry it's been a few days. I find that the longer I'm here, the less I need to write. Things were a bit rocky at first, with getting to know people has gotten a lot better -- barriers are breaking down and we're all beginning to become a family. I'm really glad that we'll have all been here for 2 weeks before any summer stuff or work crew shows up -- it gives us time to establish ourselves as a intern group and get closer to each other before meeting a flood of new people!

This weekend (Sat - Mon) we've all had off because there are no campers here. Last week we had an Inter Varsity group, and tomorrow work week starts, but this weekend we were the only ones here (thus spurring a lot of singing of our 'theme' song -- "we're interns, we do what we effing want, but not really because we dont have any actual power..." ... a joke, and we say effing not the real word, dont get crazy.) its funny because i think that everyone (well not everyone but...) there is this concept that interns run the show but really, we dont. we get told what to do, and many assigned team people see us as just glorified summer staffers. we have keys, but really.... they dont mean anything. haha. we have the highest expectiations out of anyone, including property staff. shoot.

Friday night Maddie and Alicia (cooks) made us a fantastic flank steak dinner and we all enjoyed that at one large community table (vs the round 8 seaters we usually eat at.) we dressed a little nicer and had a fun night. after that we had a meeting with Greg (camp manager) and talked about what the summer is going to look like. he announced we'd be having the amazing race on sunday/monday. the interns were spit into teams of 4, and we had to made team names and then shirts (more later)

Saturday we got to sleep in and the first thing we did at 10:30 was we set up carnival, which we will do once a week (but with the help of WC and SS). we had to set it up because we were changing the orientation of hwo things were set up. despite the economy, many of our camp weeks are packed so we had to make the carnival area bigger. so we had to set everything up (~45 minutes) and then move stuff around, then we had lunch, then we tore it all down. after that, bunch of us went to Fargo, ND which was a lot of fun. We went to Scheel's, which is like REI/Dick's. I got a rainjacket, which i really needed, and a pair of shorts, as i realized many of which i had werent quite conducive to what i was doing. then we went to target and i got some craft items (shock!) and some other assorted things. we went to B dubs for dinner and my spicy garlic sandwich, at the very least, left something to be desired.

saturday after coming back some of us were hanging out in the cutter (SS housing) and people were tinkering around on the music stuff down there - keyboard, drums, guitars. it ended up with joey and kate started singing a blues song about joey getting a ticket the night before. it was probably 10 minutes long and the funniest thing that has happened yet. after that just hung out and went to bed late becuase we didnt have anything to do in the AM.

sunday was waking up late again and then some of us headed to the flea market, which was AMAZING. i wish i had sundays off because i would go all the time. hopefully i can get out of work early enough sometime to make it over there again. they had some great stuff that i would love to decorate my future apartment/house with.... ahhh, so great. i got a necklace that im going to take apart and make a new necklace with. yes, i would.

afternoon was the amazing race. my team was kate, jimmy, and alicia and i and were were the rhymnoceri (after flight of the conchords song). the events were:

- put the buildings at castaway in order based on when they were built (super hard)
- fill up cups on people's heads from 3 stories up
- canoe around a bouey, someone retreave something at the bottom of the lake near the bouey, and get back. we got sabatoged when someone (STEPHANIE) swam over our canoe and made it take on too much water. then i tried to swim down and get the object but the lake was too cold (mind you, it had ice on it a month ago) and i almost hyperventaliated so.... we bailed on that one.
- retreive 2 leeches each from a bucket and run 30 yards back to our own bucket and put it in it (gross, but doable.)
- bow and arrow -- each person had to hit the target (and i was the first out of everyone to hit it... on my second shot! i remember doing it when i was young... i guess it helped!)

after that we had pizza and hung out. we had worship and a talk from greg, and then went to DQ where i found out jimmy and i have the same "regular" blizzard - cookie dough with choc ice cream. i introduced him to bananas in it, and it was magical. more hanging out commenced when we got home, and i went to bed early b/c i was tirrred.

woke up this morning and just hung out until amazing race part 2. we went to park and had to do a photo scavenger hunt for 4 different locations and then also take pictures of letters spelling out 'castaway club'. apparently, it was supposed to be using signs, but we got creative and used objects, too (honestly, i didnt hear "signs" but others made it clear and said we were cheating.... actually, we were being creative.) here are a few pictures from the event:

Us and Lady Liberty

and A

An L

After that we went to Greg's for a BBQ (kind of.... it was rainy all day so we were inside) and had one final task - to be a garage band and perform a song. we won by doing a re-write of "light the fire" about being interns. it was epic.

then we came back and just hung out, which is what we are doing now. but i've been writing this post for like 2 hours on and off so im going to finish.


Friday, May 22, 2009

and they say "she's so lucky, she's a star"

current situation:

- jimmy (landscape) and kate (retail) playing "lucky" by b spears on guitars
- jimmy, kate, james (maintenance) and i singing
- everyone on the computers
- maddie and i crafting birthday cards
- bj (waterfront) just replaced the screen on his macbook
- we are the only people on camp property

life is good.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

hard but good.

When you are invited to pray, you are asked to open your tightly clenched fist and give up your last coin. But who wants to do that? A first prayer, therefore, is often a painful prayer because you discover you dont want to let go. You hold fast to what is familiar, even if you aren't proud of it. You find yourself saying: "That's just how it is with me. I would like it to be different, but it can't be now. THat's just the way it is and this is the way I'll have to leave it." Once you talk like that, you've already given up believing that your life might be otherwise. Yo've already let hte hope for a new life float by. Since you wouldn't dare to put a quetion mark after a bit of your own experience with all its attachments, you have wrapped yourself up in the destiny of facts. You feel it is safer to cling to a sorry past than to trust in a new future. So you fill your hands with small, clammy coins which you don't really want to surrender.

- Henri Nouwen, "With Open Hands"

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

deep clean, then make pancake batter.

today i thought i didnt have any food work to do except to prepare the angel food cake for dinner. so, i deep cleaned the bakery, meaning move evvvvvverything, wipe it down, and scrub where necessary. i also cleaned the air vents. that was fun. well i was just about to move onto the counters and floors (the last steps in the process) when Brian (food service manager... i dont know if ive introduced him before or not) reminded me that we are having pancakes tomorrow and i have to make the batter (yes, at YL camp there is no box batter.... made from scratch yo) so i did that and then did the counters and floor. but then i had the rest of the day to myself. i took a shower and went down to the coffee shop to write some cards and stuff.

i made a sign thing of colossians 3:14 - "and over all these virtues, put on love which binds them all together in perfect unity."

my good friend and saline teammate hannah hunt has shared this verse before and "wondered" at the idea of "putting on" love... almost like it was a shirt you put on before you put on all your other clothes. and what i see so interesting in this is the part after it.... is that the love you put on binds to form unity. that love is the unifying element of... everything.

i put it up in the intern lounge in hopes that we can read it and think about how a great love that we can find and together put on can bind us together as an intern group and also bind us together with our summer staffers and other people here at camp.

its interesting i was thinking today that this is such a weird social place -- not only camp, but often young life as a while. because we are all "young life" people, we are almost automatically predestined to be friends and get along. especially as a group of interns... we are asked to be all friends and all gel together and work together. and sure, part of that is the job of property staff when they select interns to work together and another part of that is us working on our own to mesh well and to give a little here and there to get along but -- really -- above it all, we are just called to love each other and use that love to bind us, regardless of our personal feelings about one another. we are called to reach out to one another and make an effort to get to know others and not just "be" and expect others to pursue us, becuase thats what true community and love is.

we were playing a game last night -- table topics -- i guess its not really a game, but everyone would go around and choose a card and there is a random question on the card and each person answers their question. one of the questions that someone else got was "what is the difference between who you are and who others percieve you to be." i think it is so interesting to me how that answer is very different for me here and for me at home. i think that, at my core, i am a midtrovert (in between an introvert and an extrovert), funny (if thats concieted, im ok with that, haha) and contemplative. i think that in each place though, im on one side or another of that line - or at least, in how im percieved. its weird to be in a new place and know noone well, and be able to project whoever you want... or, withhold as you try and observe and figure out where you fit in it all. so, i guess now begins the process of trying to find the middle group of that and somehow try and have myself and my percieved self match up. but, i guess you dont necessarily have that much control over that.

anyways, that was perhaps deeper than i intended and it may not stay.

we just went to walmart, and i was so reluctant to do so. its a hard line to dance between principles and necessity of items to purchase with few retailers close.

time for bed before making double chocolate chip cookies and big cookie tomorrow.


Tuesday, May 19, 2009

joey has an oar and carries it around.

today was a pretty good day, definitely not as loco as yesterday. i woke up at 7:20a with a substantial headache as I got ready for 7:30a breakfast. I have entered into summer kitchen mode, which means waking up 10-15 minutes earlier than i need to be at work. so, i did that, went downstairs to a delicious french toast breakfast before going to work. today i made oatmeal cookies, coffee cake, and angel food cake. thats.... about it.

we (first year interns) also had safety training and learned how to life safely and evacuate safely. both good things to know. then it was back to the kitchen to assemble cookie plates for lunch. then the rest of the day was kind of just prep stuff, cleaning, and i also decorated the bakery with a poster of pictures i made on snapfish, my calendar, and a few other little things. it looks more homie now.

its still kind of weird as far as community goes. a lot of people know each other in one way or another, and i feel very much the new kid. on top of that, im back in seclusion (the bakery is within the kitchen but off to the back/side) so even when people are in the kitchen i rarely see them. so, its just still very much a getting to know you process, and figuring out what my place is within the group. some times are better than others, some times are lonely and others i feel like i cant find a minute to myself! but right now im good.... sitting in the west wing (what we call the intern apartment type area, where we have bedrooms, bathrooms, and a lounge) and all of us are trying to do stuff on the YL staff website but YL hates mac users, so we cant. lame.

off to go clean up dinner and re-set tables.... im excited for work crew to be here so that we can do our jobs and not do what they usually do (mainly, dining room - serving, setting, and cleaning up, and pits - which are the kids that wash all the dishes.)

until next time.....

ps the title is b/c joey (one of the parasail interns) found a mini oar and carried it around all day.

Monday, May 18, 2009

i now have stumps with no endings.

aka, i feel like my feet are going to fall off. i need crocs (as much as i hate to say it.) brian (the food service manager) is going to get me some soon, but hasnt found any in my size around here yet.

today i didnt really know what to expect for the day. so, i made the (in retrospect) poor decision of taking a shower. i went down to breakfast and 40 minutes later i was in the kitchen baking away. today i made white bread, chocolate cake, chocolate frosting, foccacia bread, poppy seed bread, and oreo ice cream pie. oh goodness. what a long day. all those things are manageable, especially in the amounts i made them (for 80 people) but by yourself its still not a walk in the park.

thats pretty much all i have to update on, since i worked from 8:45a-7:45p. im tired. we are all getting to know each other better so thats going well. im going to head down to the porch right now and hang out with some folks before returning to take shower #2 and sleep like a baby.

God is good, even in the hard work :)


Sunday, May 17, 2009

I have arrived!

seeing Chicago from the the road... it was the first time i had seen it since i was .... 10 maybe, so that was fun! i hope to stop by there for a day or so on the way home.

so back to today. got back on the road and after not too long i had to stop and get gas. i got off at one exit. there were 2 gas stations. BP had gas for $2.29/gal, and the cheaper place across the street was $2.27/gal. So, not only was it less expensive, but look what it was called:

Hi everyone....

I left Meg's house this morning at 10:30a.... only to return at 10:45a because I forgot my sweatshirt. haha. here is a picture from yesterday, since I didnt post it:

One of my mom's nick names was Chrissy Cruiser, so I thought it was funny :)

Drove a bit more.... reflective of the future and what was going on and my drive. was increasingly nervous throughout the drive, but then passed this exit and thought, wow, God is speaking to me through highway exits!

So the rest of the drive was good. Got off the highway and and made my way to camp. Called some people (and NO one answered... thanks mom and dad, haha) and then I was pretty much here! stopped at DQ to calm my nerves.... and can i just say, that they wouldnt give me a twist cone with sprinkles? they said they couldnt put it on a cone, but could give it to me in a cup with sprinkles and a cone on top. so, i took that and then scooped the ice cream into the cone. (and it wasnt that hard, pelican rapids DQ)

got to camp and pulled in the drive and .... no one was around. shoot. luckily, i saw Russell (Guest Services guy) coming out of the windjammer (where our rooms are, as well as the coffee shop, dining hall, and kitchen. i'll take you on a photographic tour of camp later) and he greeted me and told me where to park. then, it was right off to cleaning! they had a group that just left so we cleaned the clipper (which is the adult guest lodge) and then James and Alicia helped me unpack my car. I unpacked my room a bit, and now we are all sitting in the intern apartment-like area, each on our own computer (the mac to PC ratio is 4-2... macs provailing, clearly).... listening to Disney soundtracks and singing along. well, actually they are. i should brush up on my disney! Here is who is here so far:

<-- here we have Christine and Joey

< -- the is Ben

< -- and my movers, James and Alicia

all told, its going a lot better then my nerves would have originally dictated. im glad im here! i just dont know whats next :)

will talk again soon!!


Saturday, May 16, 2009

In Minnesota!


Well, I made it to Minnesota safe and sound! Meg (a friend I made on my Spring Break trip to the Dominican Republic) and I left Ann Arbor at 7:15am and made it to Minnetonka (where she lives) at 7pm (6pm local time, MN is central... keep that in mind when calling me! :)

We had a good drive with little/no trouble. We pass through Chicago (beautiful! Had only seen it once before) around 11am EST and traffic was fine. Beyond that, when we got to the Twin Cities it was a bit more congested due to traffic. Oh, and OH MY GOSH toll roads in Illinois. Are they serious? It felt like there was a toll booth every 15 minutes. All told, I think it was only like $5 though so not a big deal.

Meg's house is beautiful and so far I have enjoyed shrimp with her dad and her two sisters are making spinach artichoke dip. Its great to be in a place and not driving!

I will leave tomorrow morning (unsure what time... probably around 10 or 11) to drive the remaining 3.5 hours to Detroit Lakes, which is where Castaway is.  I'm still a bit nervous about entering the new social situation (havent had to do that in a few years!) so pray for calm and an easy time with home sickness in the beginning (I realized a few weeks ago that the longest I've been out of Washtenaw County was the last time I was at Castaway, for 2.5 weeks, in August 2007)

I will try and update this frequently so that you know what's going on!! Feel free to send me an e-mail if you havent heard from me in a while :)