Monday, 24 June 2013

Beehive Camp (30th July - 2nd August 2012)

On Monday 30th July, I went to Melton Mowbray, for our Church's Stake Beehive Camp (for the 12 and 13 year old girls), and Jack went on his first Deacon camp.

I got to the camp site first, opened everywhere up and put my tent up, then people started to arrive, and in the middle of putting up tents it started to absolutely tip it down with rain!!
We had some pretty wet tents and I filled a mop bucket full with rain water from inside people's tents!
We got everything set up, then the sun came out, and we played some 'get-to-know-you' games.
In the evening, we went down to the fire area, and had fun making fires, and cooking pudding over the fire.
It was lovely just hanging around together, relaxing and taking fun photos.

This was just such a great day!! In the morning, we all went to a local centre in Melton Mowbray which runs courses and is a kind of drop-in centre for teenagers in the area. It was set up by a guy who used to be a Policeman, and who wanted to do something to help the local kids who struggled with school, and were getting into trouble.
We went a long, and helped with lots of jobs around the place. We were only meant to be there for a couple of hours, but the girls and leaders really got into it, and wanted to finish what we started, so we all stayed for a few extra hours. We got tonnes done, including painting a computer room, an office area, the kitchen and a hall area, cleaning out the kitchen, cleaning out all the inside/outside animals, weeding the vegetable patches, painting a mural round the hair and beauty room, and re-organising the main hanging-out area. I can't even explain just how good we all felt - the girls were simply buzzing with happiness, and the guy who ran the place was really pleased and impressed with how much we'd got done, and how good the girls were.
I spent most the time painting this office area.
Back at camp, the girls learnt some knot tying, and made friendship bracelets.
In the evening, we headed back into Melton Mowbray, to go canoeing on the little river, with some local Scouting leaders. It was a wonderful evening! Some of the girls were a bit nervous, but ended up really enjoying it. The stretch of the river we stayed on was really shallow, and pretty, and the weather was lovely. 
I took my trumpet on camp (to wake the girls up with in the mornings, and gather them), and unbeknownst to me, the girls and other leaders took the trumpet with us everywhere we went!! Apparently they had great fun keeping it hidden from me, while they took photos of it all over the place, with everyone! (After camp, they gave me about 100 photos of it!)
Here is one of the Scouting leaders with it even!!
Tallulah (yes - the girls also named my trumpet...) even got her own safety helmet and paddle!
Me while I was still relatively dry - before the girls and Scout leaders tipped me out of my canoe into the river!
I was last to leave the river, and couldn't get the car started! Had to jiggle the wire to the starter motor (after getting a torch from the Scout leaders), then thankfully it worked. Back at camp, everyone was just so happy after a really good day.

In the morning we rinsed and hung out some tye-died T-shirts we had made - they looked great all hanging out together - the girls were dead proud of them!
We then drove to Belvoir, and met up with the boys' camp for a hike. We started off along a canal.
Stopping for a quick break.
Hiking with Belvoir Castle in the background.
Another little rest!
Ahhh... I do love my girlies!!
We stopped for lunch not far from the castle.
Finished!! Back to the beginning after hiking in a huge circle. Even the dead guy lying at the front managed a wave for me!
 Some of the Young Men on Mark Cain's Defender.
Some more of the 'secret Tallulah photos' from the hike! (Yes, they even took it on the hike, daft things!)
Tea time back at camp!
In the evening, there was beautiful sunshine again, and we played some games, then had a huge impromptu grass and water fight, which we all had to rush and get changed after, making us slightly late for President Cain's devotional!
Chloe Stiles getting me with a bucket of water, and Megan Clayton getting Lisa Rowe with grass!
At this point I was busy explaining to everyone that they couldn't possibly throw all those buckets of water at me due to me holding my camera...
Part of President Cain's devotional on being strengthened through unity.
After the devotional, we all headed down to the fire area for our Testimony Meeting. The evening did not quite go as planned, to say the least!! On the narrow path down to the fire area, Wendy Jolliffe (one of the leaders) slipped and fell badly, and couldn't move. We ended up calling for an ambulance as it seemed serious. Most of the leaders stayed with Wendy, and I was with the girls down by the fire. We couldn't get back to the campsite, because Wendy was blocking the only path up from the steeply sided riverbed fire area. I didn't want to start the Testimony meeting, and some of the girls were really upset for Wendy, so for quite a while we sang hymns and Primary songs. Eventually (the ambulance still hadn't arrived) I decided I needed to get the girls back to camp, so we used a rope and climbed up the bank one by one.
Finally the ambulance arrived, and took a long time to move Wendy to it. It turned out that she had broken her leg in two places, and an ankle. They took her to the Queen's Medical Centre in Nottingham.
In the meantime, I got some activities out and kept the girls busy in the main hut. 
The girls also kept me busy - they had hidden Tallulah, and done me a load of cryptic treasure hunt clues around the campsite (including one clue in the woodpile next to the ambulance, which I had to pick slugs off before being able to read it...) I eventually found her balancing up on the rafters above the showers!
We finally started our Testimony meeting at about 10pm, when everything had calmed down again - minus about half of our leaders, and all the visitors who had come for it!
It was however one of the most wonderful experiences I've ever had, and a time when I have felt the Holy Ghost the most powerfully. They are such a beautiful bunch of girls, and had developed such good friendships over the camp (many had not met each other beforehand). Almost every single person round the fire chose to speak, and share their feelings about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Each spoke powerfully and I felt so much love for each one of them - there was just such an amazing feeling of truth and unity there.
After Testimony Meeting we bought down a load of stuff for making smores, and stayed up late into the night laughing and talking, and enjoying each other's company - not really wanting the night to end.
And the evening didn't end there - a couple of the leaders and I stayed up for much of the night, in contact with Emma Sunderland, who had gone to the hospital (about 20 miles away), so that she could bring back Sharon Preston, our First Aider, who had gone with Wendy in the ambulance. Emma somehow managed to end up lost absolutely miles away in the wrong direction, and so we were standing in a field trying to get signal for an iPhone, so that we could figure out where Emma was, and give her directions back to Nottingham! What a palava!! We also had to call Wendy's husband and let him know about everything. They had a holiday planned for the next week which ended up being cancelled too.
Emma and Sharon eventually made it back to camp, and we all managed to get a few hours sleep.

Leaders Emma and Lisa, with some of the girls.
In the morning, everyone helped to pack up and clean the campsite, then head home after fond farewells. I left last, after meeting with the people who run the site, for their inspection, and to pay them. The woman said she didn't really need to inspect the site, because another group from our church had stayed at the site last year too, and left it beautifully clean. (That was my sister-in-law Niki, with Young Women from her Stake!)
Some of the fun after camp is seeing all the girls' happy comments on Facebook, and sharing all the photos and good memories!
Jack had also had a brilliant time on the Young Men's Camp, though one of his leaders, Caden, did rub it in a bit about girls' camp needing an ambulance (again! we had to call one the year before too...)
Some pictures I got afterwards of Jack's camp.
The boys' went to the National Watersports Centre, near my Mum and Dad's house!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

thanks for sharing your experience at camp. I am going as a stake leader to my first yw camp on Tuesday, here in Montevideo, Uruguay. thanks again.