Creek Life

13658964_10153724600722747_4726603674037489535_nI spent a portion of this past weekend, surviving the sweltering temperatures and heat advisories, by walking in the woods. More specifically, by walking in the water.

I’ve always said that Highbanks Metro Park reminds me so very much of growing up and the land behind my house. I grew up in a house nestled in the woods. Behind it, was large area with winding dirt paths, a deep, wooded ravine with a creek running through. A big old waterfall with a sort of a cave underneath. Rope swings and log crossings and general good times. I loved my “backyard” at home and miss it very much. 13775628_10153724600582747_310236962300977465_n

I went to Highbanks on Friday evening and realized how easy it was to get to the creek at one point on the path. So, I ventured down and played in the water a bit. On Sunday, I put on my water/trail shoes and went back. I hit the creek close to the Nature Center and followed it to the river, then walked in the river as far as I could, until I had to get back on t13620161_10153724600677747_6758577885989405491_nhe trail again.

It was wonderful.

I enjoyed it so much, I went and did the same thing at Blendon Woods. Walked a trail until I got to the creek, went off trail in the water until I found some trail again. Now, my goal is to hit up all the Metro Parks and find more water. It was peaceful, fairly cool considering, and just a great way to spend a day.

If you need me. I’ll be playing in the creek.

Splintering Chaos

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As I begin this new chapter in my life, I am making a lot of changes. The majority of those changes have to do with how I see myself in the world, how I see myself as myself, and how I feel about myself in general. I’ve spent a lot of years not thinking the best of myself and I’m working very hard and very consciously to change that. Like they say, first you must love yourself. That is a concept that is very difficult for me.

So, as any self respecting woman does, I turned to Pinterest. I went there searching for quotes and images and anything I could find to inspire and remind myself that it’s  okay to feel this way about yourself. It is still difficult for me to take a compliment and just accept it, but I’m trying.

I found the quote up top and really like the descriptors. I feel like this could be me. I would like this to be me. This quote is who I want to be when I grow up. Full of passion and chaos and mischief and thunder. All at once or not at all. And yes, I’m not stopping for anyone.

Camp Week – 2016

ButtonLast week was my favorite week of the year: “Harmony Camp Week”. It’s exhausting and exhilarating and stressful and life changing. It is a passion project of mine and I love it with all of my heart.

Harmony Camp is a week-ish long vocal music camp, well really three camps in one, for High School, Middle School, and College aged students. Our main camp, the High School camp, had about 180 kids in attendance this year. Some years we have had upwards of 300 kids. We had about 27 middle school kids this year and 12 or so kids in our college program. In addition to the main camp, we offer two half days of Quartet Coaching, the Monday/Tuesday of camp week. Our camp is specific to the Barbershop Style of a-cappella singing

Combined Girls & Boys High School Chorus
Combined Girls & Boys High School Chorus

We have award winning singers and directors on staff and a bunch of volunteers that help as counselors and coaches. I work on the year-round committee that plans the camp and this year I helped organize the quartet coaching day. I also assist with some of the choreography for the high school girls chorus and the middle school chorus.

It is a week of very late nights and early mornings, lots of walking and putting out fires, lots of singing and laughter and even some tears. I wouldn’t trade it for anything. 

Deez Notes
Deez Notes

Both of my kids have been campers. My daughter attended 5 years of camp and is now on the counselor staff. My son was at his second camp this year and had a total blast. He sang in a quartet (“Deez Notes”) and they made great strides this year. I was super proud of him.

In addition to multiple rehearsals each day, we have free time and evening activities for the kids each day. We have a
dance one night, and other nights have various activities, ranging from a

Human Foosball!!
Human Foosball!!

scavenger hunt to board games to improv games to Human Foosball.  Which is the best invention ever. I love Human Foosball.

I spend the week with 200+ Ice Creamkids who love to sing and an amazing staff of my friends. We have an absolute blast, get zero sleep, eat dorm food, and have ice cream with every very meal. We change lives every year and it never, ever gets old.

In a world full of division and hate and animosity, Harmony Camp is a place of acceptance and love and … well … Harmony. It’s a place where kids who love to sing and may be a jock or a nerd or the smartest person in their school … but all we care about is what part they sing and if they know the same songs as we do, so we can sing
together. It is the most beautiful place and I am honored and Girlsprivileged to be a part of it.  Already counting the days to #HCamp17.