12 July 2011
Camping Hawaiian Style
When you camp with your ward in Hawaii you don't just roast a few mallows, sing a few songs, tell a few ghost stories and call it a night. And don't get me wrong, I love that kind of camping, but now I have another category of camping to love: Hawaiian ward camp. We've set-up day camps each year, but this year we did it for real and it was a blast!
You might just have to see it to believe it, but here is a little glimpse of the awesomeness that is:
Devotional and Zumba bright and early every morning. All ages, genders, and sizes shaking what their mama gave them and howling with laughter as a result.
A carnival put on by teenagers for the little kids. Those teenagers might be the most nurturing, thoughtful teenagers on the planet. My kids were babied and oohhed and aaaahhhed over the whole time and they loved it.
Mandatory ward games at night. Like no joke, they will call you out by name over a microphone if they see you milling around your camp site. Once you get your reluctant buns over to the main tent you are glad because it's hilarious and just wholesome and inclusive. I wiped tears away from my eyes from laughing so hard over and over.
All ages dance parties. Thomas is convinced there is a special equation for music they play over the loud speaker in our ward: Jawaiian beat, slightly sexy (but not too much heh heh) 70's vibe, and sometimes just straight up old skool or hip hop. And they play it from the time we wake up until the movie at night. Just imagine it. Glorious.
Oh yes, the movie every night. A kid movie in the middle of camp on a big screen with loud speakers. Every night til midnight the kids are all stretched out with blankets and pillows in jammies enjoying some cute kid movie together like a giant family of brothers and sisters. Some fall asleep and get silly string sprayed on their faces, some get carried off by their mamas mid-movie (Ambrose), some stay for the whole thing before stumbling into their respective tents with their families around midnight.
The annual Dino-egg hunt (watermelons buried on the beach).
The local fire department pulling up for a demonstration of all the cool toys in their firetrucks.
Oh! We all tie-dyed shirts for a ward picture on the beach.
Being with the Parkers and all our other ward friends and having fun! I loved being next to Kristen's site because they kept bringing us heaping plates of Tongan food and it was da bomb. So generous and loving!
Two potlucks and tonight a talent show.
I'm sure I am missing something and I am purposefully leaving out the tantrums my kids threw from lack of sleep or my short temper when they threw fits, but I wouldn't change a minute of it. It was all worthwhile starting with the first night when Daddy and baby were already asleep in the tent and Ambrose leaned over to me in my sleeping bag and whispered, "But Mama, I thought we were gonna look at the stars!"
"Oh yeah let's go!" I said.
We laid out the Mexican blanket in front of our tent and he showed me all the stars he could find and gave them names. And because he is Ambrose he snuggled me real tight, and gave me lots of kisses, and said many adorable things, like, "Oh this is just what I was waiting for!" and "I just love you so much Mama thank you so much!"
Nothing beats that. I want these family moments for us and we definitely got them in buckets this week!