Our adventures at camp last month were…well…an adventure. Camp is kind of one of my “thangs,” and has always been one of my favorite areas of ministry service. I attended as a kid, was on Jr. Faculty as a teenager, and spent a summer in the Pocono Mountains as a camp counselor. Until I gave birth to Bug I happily volunteered each summer at Shawn’s week of camp, but life just got crazy after that. I always entertained the idea of bringing the boys and attending camp again, but alas it has never been meant to be.

I was busting at the seams with excitement when Shawn and I decided that the boys and I would join Shawn [in the staff cabin] this year! The Jr. High camp is near Houston – about a five hour drive. In a stereotypical ministry-family move, we loaded up our boys in the 15 passenger van hauling a trailer packed with sound equipment and other necessary camp supplies. We headed out the day before the campers so Shawn and the camp band could set things up a little early.


The boys were excited. Or at least, they started out excited. Due to an unforeseen tire problem, we began our trip a good three hours later than planned. So the excitement waned a little:

We spent a lot of time in the play place at Chick Fil A, and a lot of time in the parking lot. I spent a lot of time trying to keep spirits high and tantrum-free. The boys were amazingly good and fell asleep shortly after their regular bedtime while watching Cars on Shawn’s iPad. Good thing, since we hit traffic, got turned around, and ended up arriving a good five hours later than planned.

Whatevs. All in a day’s work when it comes to ministry.

Camp is kind of a dream place for toddlers, though. It’s loud, it’s dirty, it’s non-stop, and there is puh-lenty of new stuff to check out. Like the rocking chairs outside the dining hall:

And the doors. Oh, the doors! These door handles double as a pull-up bar:

And then there’s the creek:

There were several other staff kids who came to camp, too – so the boys had plenty of friends:

The cafeteria is also a fun world of wonder. Bear especially liked eating the butter. Yep, straight butter. I’m sorry that I’m not sorry.

And then there’s the fun game of counting butter packets, and inspecting a basket with Mr. Matthew [who is one of my boys’ most favorite people on the planet.]

There’s also riding a child sized 4-wheeler. Bug got to drive one time, but he ran into a van. So he mostly remained an eager passenger on the back.

Bear and I sat on the steps and watched the fun:

If you’re not a life-long church camp-er, there may be an unspoken rule about which you are unaware. I’m about to break the code and speak of this unspoken rule, so are you ready? 

At camp, you’re a loser if you bathe every day.

Showering every day is for people who clearly aren’t used to the camp experience. Why shower when you can just wipe the sweat off with a wet wipe, am I right? When I worked in the Pocono Mountains camp, I showered literally once a week. We also had no electricity in our cabins, and I heard a black bear snortelling outside my window one night, so it’s mostly because I was too scared to walk up to the shower by myself.

However, even with the access to a daily shower, one must retrain oneself and bathe – at most – every other day. If one begins to get funky or smell gross, one may just spend some time in the pool.

It totally counts.

What’s that? You say you know now why my kids are all boys? Well. Hmph. I’ll take that as a compliment.

So naturally I strictly adhered to the aforementioned unspoken rule. I showered once myself and bathed our boys one single time during our four day stay. Shawn, however showered each morning.


If you do bathe every day, everyone will secretly make fun of you behind your back. Dude, I’m telling you. Swim once a day and wipe those pits with a wet wipe. You’re good.


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