Friday, July 3, 2009


"Я имею друга, который говорит на русском языке." One of our campers went home and uttered this phrase to his mom. "I have a friend who speaks Russian." See, Ethan was recently adopted from Kazakhstan, along with his brother Alex, by a friend of mine, who just happened to be part of our orginial curriculum team for camp. A few weeks ago, I saw her name pop up on our registration software, and I can't begin to tell you how excited I was to see it. Immediately I gave her a call. Were they really thinking of sending their children to camp. I mean, they've only been back in the States for a few weeks?

They decided to try out the Taste of Camp week to see how they do. Alex is 4 and the most adorable little thing you've ever seen. His smile literally lights up the room. He and his brother know very little English, but I'm thinking being immersed into an environment with 35 other kids spitting out 500 words a minute is a pretty good way to learn. We placed Ethan in HJ's group. Poor HJ, I kind of forgot to clue him in on the language barrier (and a few other things), but this guy rose to the occassion. Tuesday afternoon I noticed he was reading a Russian/English dictionary. Now this was after Ethan had already gone home for the night. Can I just say that it's this type of behavior that makes me so proud of the staff we have at camp? The next day Jaclyn (the mom) told me that Ethan had come home and said, "friend, I have a friend who speaks Russian." As a mom myself, I know how that would make me feel, confident, safe, and proud. I'm not saying that's how Jaclyn felt, but I'll bet it made her glad she had decided to send them to camp.

They're thinking of coming back another week in the summer so Ethan and Alex can go to camp with another family, who are also adopted and speak Russian as well. Alena came to camp last summer and loved it. This year, she is bringing her brother along with her. What a picture of our vision. We're buiding bridges. We're creating a "safe place" for people to come and be loved. It's for this reason that I know I'm just where I'm supposed to be. And I'm so thankful that God has made that known to me.

Today we're having a cookout and inviting all of our camp families to join us. From what I've heard, most will be, even those with working parents (most people are off today...most). I'm excited to hear more stories and be able to share them here. Hopefully I'll get up some pics too.

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