June 23rd, 2011


Behind the times

So, this face was becoming vaguely familiar. A youngish mom washing and cooking on commercials while the theme from Bewitched plays in the background. Eventually, I caught her name, but it meant nothing to me: Kelly Ripa. Apparently, everybody else knew who she was. Was I expected to know her? Total blank. So, today, I googled her. Now I know who Kelly Ripa is. And my life goes on, just the same.
camp cook

Family Camp program needs

S'okay, here's the program stuff, including what we need to bring.


We should be able to swim everyday, so everybody should bring their swimming gear. Possibilities for fishing also exist, so bring your fishing pole and tackle box.

In the recreation department, there's a basketball court and a baseball field and lots of room at Temple Hills, so campers should bring their favorite gear: we need at least one basketball; a baseball or softball, bat and gloves; a football, soccer ball, or kickball; a frisbee or two. There's a ping-pong table in the screened-in back porch of the lodge.

I will bring some indoor games. A couple of extra decks of cards would be nice.


Craft-wise, I have three projects in mind (one per day).

BASKETRY: I will get all the stuff for this. There will be baskets to make within the ability of each camper (even Ian).

T-SHIRTS: Every camper should bring at least one new, clean t-shirt. We will have or make iron-on artwork to put on them. Each camper can design one's own t-shirt. We can borrow sharp scissors from the church, and I can furnish at least one iron; we need a couple more irons so the kids aren't standing in line to use one.

CANDLES: I will have wax and wicks. We can gather up old, broken crayon pieces from the church for added color. Making earth candles is an outside activity involving digging (I have my trusty orange trowel). Melting candle wax is dangerous, and requires a double boiler. We will be using a backpacker stove and metal cans for the process. The main pot will be a #10 can. We need a couple more smaller cans (large than soup cans, though -- 2 pounders or so), all washed out with no labels remaining.


Temple Hills has a well-set up kitchen. I'll be bringing some specialty gear to make sure we can cook the menu we've set. We need one or two ice cream makers. Electric, hand-crank, or toss-back-and-forth will all work.

I'm planning on shopping for the food Sunday, July 3. When I do this for Scouts or Venturers, I usually take a couple of youth along, so they learn how it's done. If a couple of our older youth campers want to help shop and then schlep the food into the church, that would be groovy.

We will cook the same way we do on retreats and other campouts. The youth will divide into groups and cook (and clean) under adult supervision. Everybody takes turns saying grace.

Personal Care

Camp is an inherently messy place. You sweat, you get dirty, you get wet. Bring enough clothes (including rain gear) to get you through. That said, you really don't need ten pounds of make-up and four pairs of shoes and a curling iron and a choice of outfits for every day. There's nobody to impress at camp. At the same time, soap, shampoo, and deodorant are greatly appreciated. Cleanliness is next to godliness, especially if you're within range of my nose.

Don't forget to be a hoopy frood who knows where his towel's at.

Bug repellent is a great fun-saver. Skin So Soft is said to work. Anything with a high concentration of DEET is good. Also, if you want mosquitoes to leave you alone, avoid bananas (skeeters love the taste of banana-eaters).

There are bunk beds with mattresses in the lodge. You can bring sheets and blankets, if you like. A sleeping bag will do just as well. Sleepwear is up to you; just don't try sleeping in your day clothes, for various reasons relating to health and happiness.

Other stuff

I'll be bringing a wilderness first-aid kit to handle normal boo-boos. I will also have permission slips available beginning Sunday so that kids not in their parent's care can be treated in case of emergency. Campers need to bring their meds and adults will see to it that they take them. (Note to parents: I don't care what they say, vodka is not medicine.)

The cost for this activity is $120 apiece. We need to start laying money down this week, please.
hound of heaven

TMI, probably

I got home a while ago and Sassy greeted me expectantly. It was Daddy-Doggy time. So I went to fetch her leash and launched into Our Walking Song* --
Let's go take a walk
all the way around the block!
Let's go take a walk
and move our bow-els!
Up past the neighbor's lawn
that we love to poop upon,
O, let's go
take a walk!

Alas, our walk, while extensive, was not very productive. And that's the straight poop.

*Sung to the tune of "Let's Go Fly a Kite," with apologies to Walt Disney and everybody associated with Mary Poppins.