Friday, June 25, 2010

Girls Camp....I Mean Vacation!!

This year the stake decided to let us have ward camps for girls camp. Our camp leader decided to try and go to this place called "Reid Ranch". It's out past Strawberry Reservoir and Current Creek. You make a turn towards Tabiona when you get to Fruitland. Anyway, we knew it was going to be a bit cushy, not really camping. We decided that our goal for this camp was to try to build some bonds between all of the girls in our ward. We called it a "Sisterhood Retreat" instead of camp and had the theme of "Building Bonds of Sisterhood". When we first got there the people who run the place met us at our lodge and gave us a introduction to the ranch. We had a lodge to ourselves with real beds, our own swimming pool and spa. And when the girls heard that the help would be in each morning to make their beds their jaws just dropped, as did all of the leaders. The best part for us as the leaders was that we weren't going to have the trouble of getting the girls to fix the dinners or clean up afterwards because we all ate at a central dining area provided by the management. There were some mighty good meals I must say. The weather was going to be beautiful while we were there which made it even better. My only problem was on the way up I got a flat tire. It could have been from the 13 miles of dirt roads and rocks that we went through to get there.(by the way I went all the way home on the spare donut, but I made it.) We also assigned each girl a "secret sister" that we wanted them to get to know better and even we as leaders had one within the leaders. All of our Presidency was able to attend along with our two camp leaders. We planned devotionals for each morning and evening. There was quite the air of excitement from all the girls as they settled in and got prepared for a few days of fun and relaxation.

The 1st night there the girls were put into 3 groups with each group having a bag of a variety of things. They were asked to come up with a skit that also had music in it. They did a great job!! We had a play about a princess that was looking for the right guy, we had a play about the Bra Fairy..if you look at the pictures I think you can see our newest Beehive with the Bra on.. and the other play was about a cooking show and the Cook, Kristin, was so hilarious that we were all crying. Then of course when those were finished we had the traditional camp Smores and a devotional before going to bed.

I wish I would have gotten some more pictures of the activities that the girls and of course we as leader could do. I didn't have my camera with me when the girls were out in the pool or the leaders in the spa. I wish that I would have had my camera with me when I was doing archery and made 3 BULLS EYES! Someone took the picture and I'll get it from them when I get a chance. The girls could have played Frisbee Golf, table tennis, Foosball, boat on their nearby lake with canoes or paddle boats. (That wasn't their most favorite as they could do that in their own back yards.) I think one of their favorites was the horseback riding. I did go up and get a few shots as you can see.
We also found time to make crafts, which were mostly about the temple. And also just enjoy some down time at the lodge where we stayed

Wednesday evening after our steak dinner, we prepared for the always wonderful Testimony meeting. There was one other group up there the same time that we were and they were from Riverton. They were a Tongan & Somoan branch up for their Youth Conference. We had seen and talked to them when we all at our meals together. Some of the girls wanted to know if they'd sing to us with their instruments. They agreed and came to our campfire before our testimonies and sang us a couple of songs. They were beautiful songs. Then we had a devotional that I gave on testimonies and how important they were to build deep so that you will be able to weather any storms. The spirit was really there and most of the girls and leaders expressed their love of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We even had a few girls there that have not been very that had never even been at or seen a testimony meeting. She bore her testimony about some miracles that had happened in her family in the last few weeks and how she truly believed it was the priesthood of this church that had made the difference. As new and budding as that testimony was it was beautiful. It was a wonderful meeting and I know the girls felt the spirit. After the testimony meeting the other branch asked our girls to come down and party a little with them...which they anxiously accepted. The polynesian people are so loving and accepting and the girls had a ton of fun!!!

Thursday morning was our last day there. We prepared the girls Wednesday night that we would be getting up at 5:30 for a sunrise hike. Well... the morning was beautiful and it wasn't a rough or difficult hike. It took us about 20-30 minutes to get there and along the way we would stop to see the rays of the sun starting to rise behind the mountains. We were headed towards some rocks that the help at Reid Ranch called the Thinking Rocks. It was a beautiful spot. Our President, Jill, gave us a morning devotional and we stood and said our YW Theme together. We also revealed our "secret sisters" that we had been assigned to do something nice for each day and to learn something new about them. This also brought some tears as we felt the love and bonding that had been our goal. I really feel that we came together and bonded as a ward Young Women. Thanks to all of the girls and leaders. I love you sooooo much. What a great YW Camp... I mean vacation!!!!

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