Every summer since we’ve had the blog I’ve written my top five favorite things about that summer. (You can find those linked at the bottom of this post.)
So here are the one’s for 2014!
I could go on and on here about my love for music and the spirit of singing at camp. And this year’s Songfest brought that home for me in lovely ways: I set out to bring back (but simplify) a longtime Camp Alleghany tradition around singing to preserve the old songs and…it worked.
It was so wonderful that I wrote a whole blog post about it.
2. The weather.
This was especially helpful given that I had a baby at camp with me.
But for campers it is, of course, the real blessing since they get to enjoy all of what’s on offer while keeping at the skill-building of their chosen activities with minimal interrupts.
So yay for the weather!
3. The staff.
We had such a wonderful mix of Junior Counselors, Tinges (Counselors who were once JCs), Non-Camper Counselor Clubbers, and Maroons (Counselors who were once campers but weren’t JCs).
The staff really bonded together well this summer, and morale was high throughout the camp season. Even when staff were tired they gave it their all and didn’t let exhaustion or anything else show. There were honestly and earnestly positive attitudes all around!
And I truly loved our mix of all staff types – we had an NCCC Campfire and a Maroon Vespers this year!
4. Michael Brandwein’s staff training & Scott Arizala’s mid-summer energizer.
Both these men really know what they’re doing and come with polished yet personal presentations.
Brandwein kicked off the summer, giving us some wonderful tips and training on communication with campers.
Later, near the beginning of 2nd term, Arizala re-energized everyone with fresh ideas and his rendition of “I’m a Little Teapot” became a camp-wide craze!
Having these outside consultants add to the roster of our already extensive professional development for counselors is a treat that helps camp, and staffers, but also gives us all food for thought in all that we do beyond camp. What a treat!
5. Our new office!
I absolutely loved the space, location, and layout, but most of all it was so necessary to separate our living quarters from our work space. We needed to get ourselves some good office furniture pieces too, like office partitions to make sure that the divide was physically there!
With so many kiddos in the Cottage (that’s the directors quarters, for those of you not in the know) we not only wouldn’t have fit very well, but it would have been very distracting.
It was refreshing to have this separation, and the new office couldn’t have been put in a more convenient location. Props to our facilities manager Garrett for the layout and construction!!
My behind-the-scenes journey
And p.s., having my little guys here with me this summer and watching them both grow up so much was phenomenal.
I arrived at camp with a 9-week-old newborn and a 3.5-year old very active little guy. I’m leaving with a 4-month old who laughs and holds things in his hands and chews on toys, and an even more independent almost-4-year old who by the end of 2nd term was taking Tennis with the campers and walking to get snack and back to the Cottage by himself!
Time flies as another season passes. Now how many days until first term 2015? 🙂
– Elizabeth Dawson Shreckhise, Assistant Director, Camp Alleghany for Girls
What happened to my top five of 2012? 🙂