Back to Reality

I left behind an incredible summer in Athens, Georgia on Monday.  What a fantastic adventure.  I never thought I would learn so much in one summer.

Athens was lovely, UGA’s campus was great, and the people I met and worked with were beyond beautiful.

The last week of camp was bittersweet, but here are some random pictures and highlights:

I told you that being asked to Prom first term was one of my summer highlights–And I’m such a lucky girl that I got asked again 🙂 But this time it was by our office coordinator and my Athens sister, Betsy.  The flowers were made from cardstock and there is a stamped card from Jittery Joes, my favorite Athens coffee shop.

Then we had Prom.  Aren’t these ladies beautiful?

Highlight of Prom? When the serenading 4th years serenaded Bailee and I.

Everyone got a little stir crazy…and just regular crazy the last week of camp.  Why do you ask?  Here are 4 reasons I captured:

1) Hunter and Carson planked on the 2nd floor balcony several times.

2) Bailee and I danced wayyyy too much…In the residential hall, in sprinklers at 2AM, and in sketchy bars/clubs. (I miss that girl a lot…)

3) Lee B went dumpster diving…and he was great at it.

4) The staff put away about 30, 000 calories in a one-hour period.

After leaving Athens I made a quick trip to Charleston, South Carolina.  I spent a lot of time on the beach and eating.

One restaurant where I ate was Magnolia’s.  Its claim to fame? Oprah’s favorite restaurant.  Swag.

I just thought this was funny:

Do you think they did this on purpose?

Anyways, Charleston was lovely, but I was ready to be home after 1604 miles and 63 days on this journey.

Hmmm…and nothing says happiness like eating lunch at Sub Station II with the New Student Programs Crew during a campus-wide lockdown because of an alleged gunman walking around campus.

I’m so glad to be home, but I miss a few people like crazy.

My next adventure?  Two weeks of Hokie Camp starting on Sunday.  I’m P-U-M-P-E-D PUMPED.  Stay tuned because camp life is never boring and I always have a camera with me.

TrueLife: I work at a nerd camp (Part II)

This week has been wonderful.  Here are the highlights:

  • The director of my graduate program came to visit me and I ate dinner with the men who wrote my textbooks.  I felt super uncomfortable, nervous and sweaty.  But I think I pulled it off.
  • I spent my day off being pampered at a spa in town…Afterwards, I seriously considered quitting life and becoming a princess but I don’t even know where I’d find an application for that whole process.

Other than that, it’s been a breezy week filled with hot sunshine and whiny kids.  But, as promised, here are a few more things I’d like to add to my “Why I adore my job” list:

To recap from the last post:

1) Prom

2) One-on-ones

And in addition…

3) Nightly serenades

I don’t know how it started, but one night, my boss told me I needed to go to the wing where our oldest male campers live.  So I walked over around 10:40PM.  Now, to give you some background, campers are supposed to be in their rooms at 10:30PM and lights out at 10:45pm…no exceptions.  As I turned the corner to the wing I found about 20 heads sticking out of the doors while singing, “I Want it That Way” by the Backstreet Boys.  A few boys were playing guitar, of course.

Their residential counselor, Geoff, said, “I don’t know what to do.  They’re technically in their rooms so they’re not doing anything wrong…” And it was true.  And lovely.

So this has turned into a nightly occurrence.  Every night at 10:40, I promptly head to the male wing to be serenaded.  I’ve had the pleasure of listening to some Jason Mraz, Oasis, and the Backstreet Boys.  I’m hoping some Eric Clapton will sneak in… Anyways, the nightly serenades are the best part of my day.

And no, it’s not weird that I enjoy singing from 16 year-olds.

4) So much room for activities!

We have so much fun at camp.  Here are some of the activities that have occurred in the past week:

Trivia Night

Lee M. and I had the pleasure of hosting Trivia.  Last term, if you recall, we hosted as the royal couple.

However, my accent has disappeared and British people aren’t that funny.  So we were ourselves this term and I think we did a fantastic job.  At one point we let the crowd ask us any questions they wanted.

“What color are my underwear?” and “Will you go out with me?” were my favorites.  Not entirely appropriate, but still my favorites.

Ultimate Frisbee

The Staff vs. Student game is something the kids (and staff) look forward to every term.  The staff (aka Staff Infection) have dominated both terms.

Intimidation is the key to a win.

I actually scored a point!! And I may have clotheslined a few 16 year-olds but it’s their fault for running into my arm.

TrueLife: I work at a nerd camp (Part I)

I haven’t posted in a while (which I’m reminded of constantly by friends) but it’s only because I haven’t taken any incredible pictures to match my post.  I think everything is so much more exciting with pictures.

But I found some pictures I haven’t shared yet and it made me think of why I love my job.  So here’s the beginning of a list (I love lists) of why I absolutely adore my job:

1) Prom Dates

Every Saturday of camp we sponsor a dance for the students.  I feel like I’m chaperoning a middle school dance:

“Leave room for Jesus!”

“You’re wearing too much Axe”

“Would your mother let you wear that in public??”

One of the dances is Prom themed.  So a few days prior to this dance, I was sitting in the dining hall, minding my own business, eating some yogurt when out of the corner of my eye, a young man came and knelt by my chair.  It was one of my Residential Counselors, Carson, and he was holding a corsage made out of duct tape, construction paper, and glitter.  And then he asked me the most beautiful question a girl could ever hear: “Will you go to Prom with me?”  I shouted, “Yes!” and the entire dining hall erupted with applause.  Alright, so the dining hall didn’t applaud…but it was still pretty awesome.

I was so impressed with his homemade corsage (rather the corsage I’m sure he got someone else to make), that I had to make him a boutonniere out of duct tape. Voila!

And here we are… (Notice how much room we’ve left for Jesus)

Precious…I love middle school slow dances.  Anyways, I hadn’t had a very good day and Prom definitely made me smile.

Here are some other staff members rockin’ out..

That’s our director.  He dyed his hair for spirit week…it’s not usually green.

2) One-on-Ones

I force my staff to meet with me one-on-one each week for thirty minutes.  It’s just a time set aside for me to catch up on their lives and make sure I’m doing everything I can to make their experience amazing.  And some of my one-on-ones are my favorite part of the day.  All of my staff members are wonderful, incredibly complex, beautiful individuals and a adore getting to know them more.  I have learned so much from them.  They are each unique and lovely.

I was having a crazy day and was having back-to-back one-on-ones all day long.  After a one-on-one with one of my counselors she surprised me by teaching me how to make an oragami crane! I had mentioned that I love learning new things and she wanted to teach me something new 🙂  She completely made my day.

I made the purple one!! I really did.  It’s the little things that count.

Ok, so that was a short list…but it’ll get better.  I’m working hard over here so give me a break.  I’ll post again this week. Promise Promise