Monday, June 30, 2008

Why we get certified

My father has requested that I share my experience with the "Lady and the rope swing". I've been instructed not to brag- Me?.
This is why we certify at girls camp for 4 years!
The last night of girls camp, we invited the stake leaders and parents up for a night- very similar to Liahona. At camp we have a rope swing. It is about 10 feet off the ground  so you have to hike up a hill to even get on the thing and when you swing, your apex is about 15-18 feet up in the air. It is an exhilarating feeling swinging so high up.
One of the leaders who came up to camp went to the rope swing and fell off at the apex- apparently, she lost her grip- and landed on her hands, breaking her wrist. I was in the "kitchen" at the time, and the girls ran from the swing to the kitchen to tell me what had happened. Quickly, I started out for the swing with some girls right behind me. I sent one for the camp director and one for a long sleeve t-shirt. When I got to the area, poor Michelle was laying on the ground with her arm out sideways, obviously trying not to cry too hard.
I arrived first, asked her the basic questions, looked at her wrist and -this is the important part- began to do the things I was taught at girls camp to do. We tried to splint, but it was too painful, so I made a quick sling out of the long-sleeve t-shirt, keeping her talking not focusing on the pain. We got her slowly to her feet, sent some girls to get the brothers who were with us, and slowly walked her to camp. When we got there, everything was ready for her to be taken to the hospital.
During the course of it all, I felt like I knew what I was doing because I had been learning how to do this for 4 years and had also just been teaching it during my girls' certification. The knowledge of how to identify, treat and transport injuries and injured persons was invaluable. This is truly why we do certification- just like the prophets have been saying for EVER: be prepared!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

aaaand, we're back!

I've just returned from Girl's Camp! What a neat experience to have again- only this time in a totally different position! The last time I was at camp was when I was the "dirty duties lady" and c'mon, thats not a "FUN!" position. So, this time, I went as a ward camp leader. We do our girls camp very differently here in SLC. The ward leaders are in charge of EVERYTHING- one ward leader gets to plan all the crafts for the week; another one the service activity; another one the certification yada yada yada... Well, I was in charge of FOOD and I must say, that was an enormous job. It really made me appreciate the sacrifices made on my behalf so I could enjoy healthy, plentiful meals when I was a girl. Thank you to the pervious camp cookies who have served at girls camp year after year. Now I understand what you  have gone through. I'm sorry. the whole camp experience this year gave me a new-found appreciation for the camp leaders I've had in the past. Please allow me to reminisce. I'm grateful to Monica Kibble, Stacy Frost, Aikele, March, Hunt, My dad, my mom, Helen Thompson, Kerri Satterfield, Carol Gould, Barb Leal, Brother Leal, Capsons, Robin Riggs, Blanca Fetokai, the Sables, Pat, Lanette Hopkins, Bonnie and Jim Mattson and all the wonderful people who I can see in my head but not remember their names. YOU made my experience wonderful, magical, spiritual. I have attempted to do this year for my girls what you attempted to do for me. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
We utilized some Liahona traditions for camp this year! The girls began their certification/camp necklaces! They were always concerned with earning more beads- because I still have mine and everyone wanted to get farther and farther along to look like mine. Made me glad that I kept it after all this time.
We also pirated freely from my marching band experience. Whenever a girl left something in the eating/gathering pavilion that should not have been left, we (the leaders) collected it and would only give it back to the girls if they "squirreled" for it singing this song:
Grey squirrel, grey squirrel, shake your bushy tail
grey squirrel, grey squirrel, shake your bushy tail
Turn around and touch your toes
stick a nut up your nose
grey squirrel, grey squirrel shake your bushy tail.

This produces mainly 2 responses: 
1- mortification. These girls never left anything out again
2- encouragement. These girls left things over and over again! Pretty soon, we have a few girls leaving things out so often, we thought they did it because they liked singing the squirrel song. So, we changed their song. Instead of singing Grey Squirrel, they were obliged to do "the pencil". This consisted of them turning their backsides to the audience and writing the alphabet with their bums. Or their names in cursive. Think leading the music in seminary- now transfer that random hand wave to a posterior and it was EXTREMELY funny- and made me red in the face to demonstrate once.
When the girls were late to anything, they had to sing "I'm a little tea-pot" complete with actions. Again, I think some girls just liked to perform- and others never showed up late again.

All in all, it was a terrific week. We did a lot of good things, had a lot of fun and were really grateful to be back.

I'll post photos as soon as I have some!