I just returned from Young Women’s camp on Saturday. This year was my 5th year in a row attending. (Please, hold your applause.) For those of you not part of the Mormon faith, who have no idea what I am talking about, Young Women’s camp is for the teenage girls in my church ages 12-18. Our goals are many, but just a few are: helping them increase their testimonies of Jesus Christ as our Savior, teach them skills, bond as only women (young and old) can,
Now, before I go further, I must say that when I went to YW Camp in the California San Bernardino mountains as a teenager, it was quite different. We had electricity in our cabins, hot running water, and we ate all together in a giant mess hall where the food magically appeared on large tables, carefully prepared by fairies and gnomes.
No dishes were done, no work to be done. Oh, and we had a swimming pool which was crusty, but nonetheless, it was still a pool. Now, the camp we attend in the Utah mountains is rustic and meant for pioneer women who simply didn’t know the difference when faced with a week of no bathing and boiling water to wash dishes. I am such a wimp and I proudly proclaim that camping is for the birds. Well, it’s for the kind of birds who like dirt, bugs, and sleeping on 20” wide cots. Because this bird likes her Blackberry, memory foam mattress pad, and homemade chocolate milkshakes at night. (Good grief, that sounds like a personal ad!)
This year was dubbed Rainy Camp (notice the rain droplets on the pink lantern and on the canopy). And don’t I look happy in my yellow poncho? Last year was ‘Hotter than Hades Camp’, the year before that was ‘Frozen Chosen Camp’, and the previous two were just plain ‘Normal Dusty Camp’. I thought Utah was a desert, but mother nature has a sense of humor, hence the daily rainstorms. On the day we made reflector ovens to bake our pizza and cookies, I had to light my charcoal (no joking) at least 7-10 times because of all the blasted rain. But oh yes, I prevailed in making fire, even in a deluge. Don’t the girls looks happy cookin’ in the wild?
I tried to stay out of most of the photos, instead preferring to be the Paparazzi. Here I am photographing our pizzas baking. After all, it’s camp, and there ain’t no make up allowed at camp.
All in all it was a fabulous week. Lives were touched and I still believe that there is nothing quite so beautiful as a young woman who keeps the commandments of God. She literally glows and it sure shows in her countenance.
Wouldn’t you agree?