This is my first morning since this past Monday that I will not be hearing “Good Morning Campers!”
I cam home yesterday from my week at Camp Benedict, a camp for adults, children, and families dealing with AIDS. Camp Benedict is in the bar just underneath my blog header year around. If you click on that link, it will tell you my background story and connections to the camp. This year was my second year at camp and I didn’t think I could be even more impressed on than last year…. but I was. This week for the Saturday Snapshot (check out Saturday Snapshot at Alyce’s At Home With Books) , I am going to share with you a few pictures from this weeks camp experience:
The camp brings in people from around the state (occasionally beyond) for a week of connecting, sharing, and education. My friend Connie who organizes the camp offers this week to the campers for free. You read that right. She does not want the cost to be a burden to anyone so the money we raise at the spring benefit dinner and then the summer CCB ride, all goes to support the camp and pay for the week. And… it is a nice week.
The camp is beautiful – right on the lake with education each morning and evening, and afternoon free time activities like horse back riding, swimming, pontoon rides, tubing, and more.
On Tuesday morning we were all lead in a group exercise session using the ball. This was a lot of fun and it was exciting to see everyone give it a try. Some of the moves were basic stretches and some more advanced. We ended the session with a time of meditation, relaxing laying back and reflecting. Many people mentioned how much they enjoyed this. I personally love working out on the ball and I picked up a few new tips to try at home.
Before every meal we are led by Camp Staff (and occasionally a few bonus people) in a prayer. The prayers are always set to a theme song… this one is said to the Superman tune. 😀
The education classes are wonderful, a speaker came in and talked to us about stigma, an emotional talk where people could share their stories. We also had a repeat speaker, Bill, who does a wonderful job of sharing the latest information on medication, up and coming information, and the importance of being consistent on the meds. Another speaker spoke on the companies that can assist you with getting the medication you need, and yet another doctor was there to answer any questions. There may….. have been a few camp pranks played….. I am not at liberty to say. 😉
It is always a roller coaster of emotions during the week. Some moments are sad, and other time we are laughing and on a pontoon on our way to get ice cream at the Dairy Queen. It is definitely a week I will reflect on throughout the year. Some of the people have been there before, and some are new… and for the new ones, it is amazing to watch them blossom throughout the week as they feel the acceptance of the camp and make connections to keep themselves healthy and to new friends as well. In the past two years that I have went to this camp I have left with old friendships being stronger, and new ones being developed.
Mid week we have a tailgate party where people who live around the lake and the camp come and grill for us. Our weather this week was perfect!
Of course… the final day is bitter-sweet. It is always hard to say good-bye hoping you will see people next year. The people who go to camp are amazing people. If you want to know more about this amazing camp, please check out the website here: Camp Benedict.org and my original connection to the camp is posted here: My connection to Camp Benedict.
Today hubby and I are heading to the Minnesota State Fair. We have not been there in years so this should be an experience. 😀