Introducing, to you, the Cherry Hill 4th ward crew. These girls have my heart. I love them, I love them, I love them. It’s amazing how one calling can change so much of your life. Five months ago, I knew nothing about this group of ladies. Now, only a few short months later, I think of them daily. I lose sleep worrying about these girls and spend wayyyy to much time out of my comfort zone in attempt to make this program a good, worthwhile experience. These girls and leaders are definitely one of the biggest blessings in my life.
Though, I must admit, when the bishop asked me to be the Young Women’s President, I was beyond shocked. The only words I could manage to say were, “Yes, but are you sure?” What followed soon after was a rollercoaster of emotions: ecstatic to finally be in young womens (my heart is with the youth), an eagerness to throw my heart and soul into this calling, and an immense fear and panic that I don’t know what the heck I am doing. Though the running-around-with-my-head-cut-off feeling hasn’t changed, my heart and purpose to love these girls has. Though we may be small (6 on a good day, 10 total), we are growing leaps and bounds together– a mighty force to be reckoned.
One of the highlights of this summer was girls camp. Hallelujah for girls camp!! It’s the perfect excuse to leave the drama, cell phones (YES!!) and baggage behind to enjoy each other in the mountains. There is something special about hundreds of young women gathered in the mountains to sing songs of praise, learn more of Christ, bond with each other and just enjoying being young — lots of skits, games and pranks. It was a little piece of heaven for me to steal the girls away from troubled homes, school drama, and that stir-crazy feeling as summer is coming to a close so we can relax, play, and chat about our dreams — it’s sounding a bit like Neverland.
One thing these girls loved was the game mafia. They couldn’t get enough. It was our bedtime routine to play a few rounds of mafia before the lights went out. And need I say, these girls are hilarious when they’re put on the “chopping block” as a viable threat (“murderer”) to the group. I couldn’t stop laughing at the logic (“I heard a noise in the corner—> away with Susie”).
My favorite part was the morning seranation. Because we were at a multi-stake girls camp, we would wake up to other stakes singing beautiful hymns across the lake. Their lovely voices would carry messages of hope and comfort across the valley. It sounded like an army of young women singing praises to welcome to rising sun (Son). It was beautiful and so powerful watching the sun rise and hearing such wonderful messages.
Perhaps the only downer of the week was my poor ability to drive a trailer. Ha! Nick lent me his nice truck and trailer to haul all of the girls’ belongings, food, and gear up to camp. It was a nice drive, up until the point of needing to reverse and turn around in a small dirt parking lot. I didn’t realize the truck bed was down, causing the trailer hitch to hit the top of the truck bed, quickly reminding me to put it up:) Gosh! AND what’s worse was me trying to back into the small parking spot reserved for our ward. I kid you not, there were 10 people (mostly preisthood leaders) surrounding my car waving their arms, pointing every which way shouting their go-to trailer parking mantras. Though a few offered to help, I wanted to finish the job. Yes, it was my stubborn pride that meant 15 more minutes of swirving a hard left and right, but we finally got the trailer all snug between two cars with only a dent to prove it. (Don’t worry, Nick took it well. Maybe it was the fact that he backed into my car the week prior that left us feeling “even”.)
All in all, this week was a success. The girls were great. The pranks semi-harmless (minus the garlic salt + essential oils + lotion on our toothbushes, making one of the leaders actually throw up before bed). The food delicious. (I am learning to better appreciate cooking dinner for Nick, after cooking back-to-back-to-back meals every day in the dirt and smokey fire).
Hooray for a week away in the mountains!
Here’s a recap in iPhone shots…