Saturday, 18 May 2013


I made it 17 days into the Blog Every Day in May Challenge! 18, if you want to count today even though I'm not blogging about the assigned topic.  However, tomorrow morning I leave for camp and I can guarantee I won't be able to blog everyday. I'm not entirely sure what blogging will look like over the summer, I'm going to keep up with it as much as is possible when basically working 24/7 and having a very undependable internet connection!


I spent yesterday at and this morning at an annual Girl Guide & Scout Camp for our area. It's one of my favourite Guiding events and I look forward to it all year. I'm leaving bright and early tomorrow morning for the camp I actually work at so this year I just went out yesterday to help set up and left today around noon. It was pretty cold weather for camping last night (-2 at the lowest temp!) so when I got home I enjoyed a warm shower and had a nap in a cozy bed. 

When I got up from my nap I got ready and met up with one of my best friends for our trademark Iced Coffee & Wal-Mart dates. It was good to catchup with him. I was thankful I was able to see him before I left. We went to different universities and then when I moved home he moved away to work on his master's degree so it's been almost six years since we lived in the same province! When we're both away it's not often are schedules match up where we're in the same place at the same time.

On that note I am off to bed! I'm hoping for a really good nights sleep so that I feel awake and refreshed for the long drive tomorrow (7 hours!)

Friday, 17 May 2013

5 Years

This is my favourite picture of myself. There's nothing special about the photo itself, but it's all about the moment. I didn't know the photo was being taken until I was tagged in it on Facebook a few days later. In this moment I was standing at the Vespers Spot at the camp I grew up at, something I'm sure I did hundreds, maybe thousands of times over the 10 years I was a camper and volunteer there. What makes this moment important is it was the last time I would ever stand there. Due to a series of unfortunate events that started with the person who formally owned the land camp was on passing away without a will and ended with some relative of his voiding the lease and deciding to sell the land. Yesterday I didn't really talk about specific struggles, but this photo captures what has been one of the hardest things I've had to deal with. I have no idea why God would make/let that chain of events happen, especially to a place where so many campers, counsellors and volunteers found God among the trees and heard Him most clearly standing in the field. But He did. And now what used to be my favourite place on earth, the place where I learned the most about myself and life is in the process of becoming a subdivision. 

It's been five years since this all happened and it still hurts. Every time I drive by the sign advertising lots for sale I either tear up or am overcome with anger. For the sake of my sanity I have to believe with all my heart that there is an amazing reason for why this happened, I don't know it yet, and maybe I never will, but there's a reason. We tried to run the camp program by renting another camp for a few weeks each summer but two years ago the committee made the decision to end that as well. And that hurts too. I miss it every single day, and although there I things I love about my new/current camp, it's not the same.

I am thankful that I did get 10 amazing years there. Without camp I have no idea what I'd be doing right now, camp is so much a part of who I am, and that particularly camp will always remain one of the most important foundations of my life.

Thursday, 16 May 2013


Today's prompt is to write about our lot in life, something difficult that we are working to overcome. 

And again, because I've been assured the blogging police aren't going to come knockin' on my door, I'm going to pass. It's not that I've had it easy, but in the whole scheme of the world I've had it pretty good. I've always had a house, bed, food, more clothes than necessary, parents...up until the age of 15 I had all four grandparents and 3 great-grandparents. I've mentioned before that I'm a recovering pessimist and spending time complaining about things that are out of my control just doesn't seem healthy. I'm not judging anyone that de-stresses after a long day or stressful situation by complaining to their best friend, if that's what works for you, go for it! But that's not me. 

Yes, I've had bad things happen, and sometimes I get incredibly sooky that the plan I had in my head isn't what's happening. Everyday I'm getting better about really trusting God and knowing that the rough spots happen for a reason. Surviving the rough spots makes you stronger and I'm thankful for opportunities to grow and learn.

On that note I need to get ready, head to town and pick up a few last things I need for camp. Come home and finish packing in time to enjoy tonight's Grey's Anatomy finale! Friday I'm off to Girl Guide camp for the night and then Sunday is a 6-7 hour drive to camp! I'm not sure what blogging will look like once I get to camp. I really want to keep up with it, but it's going to be somewhat dependent on the internet situation. Last summer we couldn't get the wi-fi router to install on the office computer because it was too old. This summer there is a new computer in the office so fingers crossed! Not that I will spending any great amount of time on the internet, it's just nice to be able to publish posts and stay somewhat connected during the summer. 

Wednesday, 15 May 2013


I had the best intentions of really taking today's prompt head on and take a photo an hour and have a totally riveting blog post. As you will soon see that was an epic fail, but without further ado my day -in point form - because I am awful at remembering to take pictures. 

I woke up at 8:30-ish and decided to hang out in bed for awhile and watched yesterday's episode of Ellen. Around 10:00 I came downstairs and made myself a cup of coffee which I enjoyed while reading a few blogs and e-mails. At 11:30 I decided I had to start being productive so I got my suitcase and various bags that I had started to pack and established a central packing location in our dining room. I tried to be organized about it and pack outfits rather than clothes, but in the end it just wasn't happening. I took a break for lunch at 1:00 and threw together a pizza out of some leftovers. By 2:00 I returned to packing and was able to get all of my shoes, clothes, toiletries, bedding and some other random things packed before supper. We ate supper at 5:30 (corn on the cob) and after supper I walked 5 km. When I got home it was 7:45 so I tidied up my room a bit and packed another bag with old magazines to use for crafts. This took a lot longer than necessary because I was simultaneously watching a documentary on Netflix and texting while I was cleaning and packing. It's now 9:50 p.m. and I am waiting for Criminal Minds to come on at 10. When that's over at 11 I'm planning on having my quiet time before bed, making a list of things I have to pick up in town and then I will most likely read for a bit and watch a show until I fall asleep. I am terrible at falling asleep, but I usually manage to get to sleep before 2:00 a.m. 

And if you read through that without falling asleep I am truly impressed! 

Tuesday, 14 May 2013


Today's prompt is pretty simple 10 Things That Make You Happy!

3 a.m. conversations
I love having real conversations with people. It doesn't have to be a serious topic sometimes a heated debate about the best Crayola crayon colour (it's Cerulean Blue) can be just as much of a bonding experience as discussing the moment you found Jesus. And there's something extra special about those conversations when they happen late at night. Maybe this is just me because I've spent so much time at camp over the years, but all of the best conversations happen late at night. As a camper it's probably because you spend all day doing things and then at night you get a chance to really talk to your cabin-mates. And as a staff member it's because you're really doing things all day (and all night) and the best time to chat is after all the campers are settled and you and your co-counsellor are hanging out in the counsellor room, or you aren't on sleep out, but you do have 12 camper awards to make and colour before morning.

Perfect Mornings
There's just something about starting the day off right that makes the whole day better. My perfect morning first consists of waking up without an alarm and feeling like I got a good night's sleep. Then checking my phone, scrolling through Twitter to catch up on news before checking my e-mail and reading the Internet Cafe Devotion of the day and then getting out of bed. Followed by showering, getting ready and then enjoying coffee and 1/2  an everything bagel with herb & garlic cream cheese. Maybe reading some blogs while I eat or if my some miracle the above steps happen at camp chatting about the upcoming day with my director or if the stars really align sitting with the campers during breakfast.

Snail Mail
Getting mail is the best! One of the only good things about moving home after university is that I get to send & receive cards and letters and packages to my friends still living in my university city. There's something special about opening an envelope and seeing handwritten (or typed!) letters. One of my summer goals is to write more letters to friends. Since the internet connection is pretty unreliable. We had a staff member last year who was always writing letters and receiving mail and I want in on the fun! 

Things that Glow in the Dark
I'm not sure why I have such a love for things that glow in the dark, but I do! I will proudly admit to still having glow in the dark stars on my ceiling, my glow in the dark Nalgene is one of my favourite possessions and it just makes me happy!

This is the camp person coming out in me. Sharpies are wonderful, they come in all different colours and sizes. They write on everything! You can always use a Sharpie. During the summer I usually have one stuck in my hair for easy access. 

Reality TV
I'm a purist when it comes to Reality TV. I love Survivor, The Amazing Race, Big Brother. I have never once watched an episode of The Bachelor/ette and I don't understand why American Idol hasn't been cancelled. I also love 'reality TV dramas' like Deadliest Catch and Ice Road Truckers. Teen Mom used to be my guilty pleasure, but I stopped watching this season because instead of being entertained and sympathizing with the Moms I just felt uncomfortable watching them. I do still indulge in almost all of the TLC reality shows...except the wedding ones. OK, so maybe I'm
God Moments
I think I've talked about this before but it really is one of my favourite things/things that make me happy. Everyone has their own definition of God Moment, for me it's those tiny details in daily life that are just so tiny and perfect that the only way to explain them is that it's God at work. It can be anything from hearing your all-time favourite song on the radio even though it hasn't been popular in 10 years or finding the perfect gift for a friend. It's always a humbling and peaceful moment when things just work out.

My love of neon started off innocently with brightly coloured socks and a florescent Lulu Lemon head band, then I bought a few pairs of neon Nike running shorts and now I've acquired a couple of neon shirts. Bright colours make me happy! And I think summer is the perfect time to wear them, so I'm embracing my new found love of neon colours. Glitter goes with this too, there are few things in life that can't be improved by adding glitter! 

Rainy Days
Specifically rainy summer days, when it's warm enough to go outside and play in the rain and jump in puddles for approximately half an hour before you get too cold and have to go inside. At which point you go inside and get a warm shower and put on comfy jogging pants & a hoodie and spend the rest of the afternoon snuggled up on the couch sipping tea/coffee reading or watching a movie. 

Brushing My Teeth
For some reason brushing my teeth is an instant stress relief for me! It's so simple and it just makes me feel so much better about life.

I think this has been my favourite prompt of the challenge so far! I love thinking about the things that makes me happy and reading about what makes other people happy!

Monday, 13 May 2013

My Apologies

Dear Future Donna,

I'm sorry that instead of hauling out my suitcase that is currently hiding in the closet behind 3 old prom dresses and really starting the packing process I am leisurely watching Live with Kelly & Michael, sipping on some Pepsi. I realize that if I want to be fully packed for camp on Thursday night so that I can go camping with the Girl Guides Friday and Saturday and hang out with D. Saturday night before leaving for camp early Sunday morning, I should not be sitting in front of the TV/computer. Unless I am working on PowerPoint presentations for Staff Training or watching TV as background noise while I finish assembling staff welcome bags. This is turning into more of a guilt trip than an apology...which is good, because now I am feeling the need to rush this post and go be as productive as possible before I have to leave for Brownies at 5. Let's see how much I can accomplish in 3 hours (including getting dressed in something other than jogging pants & tie-dye t-shirt.)

Present Donna

As usual linking up here!

Sunday, 12 May 2013


Today's writing prompt is "What do you miss?" I wasn't sure where to go with this...I feel like I'm in a constant state of missing people, places & things, then being reunited with those people, places and things only to miss different things. Missing is a vicious cycle. Usually I would write about missing camp, because I spend a lot of time missing camp. However, this time next week I will be at camp!! So I'm going to write about something different.

I love details. The little things make me the happiest. Proof that I love the smallest/silliest things? This is my favourite stain on the carpet in the youth group room.

The youth group I helped lead when I was in university had a youth group room in the attic of the church. We often joked it was just the dumping ground for all the things nobody else wanted. Highlights include a couch with a broken leg, a TV stand that had to be broken to fit up the stairs and then reassembled once it reached it's destination, another couch that has delightful red velvet upholstery and my personal favourite, the carpet. 

I'm not really sure how old the carpet is, or what it's original colour was but it's currently a dark mustard yellow, with a twinge of green and brown and maybe some beige. It's seen a lot of things. It's absorbed a lot of spilled pop and juice and crushed popcorn kernels and paint and general dirt. And even though it's usually vacuumed once a week or after ever major youth group event there are just some stains that won't go away. And I love it. It feels (felt) like home and peace and comfort. I obviously miss the youth a lot and the other leaders. But I also miss going up the stairs after a long day and being greeted by familiar couches and carpet and bright green walls.

Saturday, 11 May 2013

10 Words

Today's Challenge is to sell yourself in 10 words (or less):
  • passionate
  • creative
  • thoughtful
  • caring
  • stubborn/determined
  • faithful
  • compassionate
  • quirky

My Saturday morning stared off in my favourite way: Coffee, Everything Bagel wtih Herb & Garlic Cream Cheese and catching up on blogs. In an hour I'm leaving to go sell Girl Guide cookies with my Brownies for a couple of hours and then go through camping gear before taking a group of Girl Guides camping next weekend. Our last Brownie meeting is Monday night so we're having a pizza & ice cream sundae party which means I also need to make a trip to the grocery store. And finishing crafting end of the year gifts for the girls, and find some cute 'Thank-You' gifts for my two co-leaders. And have I mentioned I leave for camp a week from tomorrow?  Which means a whole lot of packing needs to be done, plus finish planning sessions for Staff Training...I feel like my to-do list is multiplying by the second. It will all get done All of the important stuff will get done and if a few things don't get crossed off the list then it's not the end of the world!

Friday, 10 May 2013


The topic today is most embarrassing moments. Talking about embarrassing moments really should have been listed on the things that make me uncomfortable post. I feel embarrassed/awkward about things on a daily (sometime hourly) basis. I have never understood people who are brave enough to share their embarrassing moments with other people. My plan of action is always to carry on with my life and delete the moment/situation from my memory ASAP. Optimism isn't something that comes naturally to me, I have to really put effort into finding the positives and looking on the bright side of life. Reliving situations and events that make me feel embarrassed has a snowball effect for me, I start thinking about one time and then suddenly I'm all the way back to a vague memory that maybe happened to me in grade 1...but it could have also happened to my best friend?

So since I've been assured the blog police aren't going to come knockin' if I don't follow the rules exactly I'm going to keep my most embarrassing moments to myself. 

I had planned to make up for it by posting some of my favourite moments from this week but a quick glance at the clock just made me realize I need to get off the computer and get ready to pick my cousin up at school then drop by the farmer's market with Mom before heading to the church to set up for an event tomorrow.

Thursday, 9 May 2013



My moment of the day is watching Grey's Anatomy. The original characters (Meredith, Derek, Cristina, Alex) will always be my favourite but I'm really digging April's storyline related to her faith!

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Career Advice

I'm keeping things simple for today's Blog Every Day in May Challenge. My advice is this:

Figure out what you love and then figure out a way to make money doing it.

It makes me so sad (and annoyed/frustrated) when I hear people (especially people around my age) say things like "I guess I'll do education and be a teacher, I don't know what else to do with an English degree" or "I don't really like engineering, but I'm going to make a lot of money." and the one that makes me cringe the most, "I really wanted to study art, but there's no jobs with that and my parents wouldn't let me, so I'm going to be a nurse because I'll be guaranteed a job out of university." I realize that not everybody knows exactly what they want to do and interests might change along the way. But the reality is that in this day and age your career is a big part of who you are, you're going to be doing it for a while. Why spend all that time doing something you don't like? 

You might not make a ton of money doing what you love (I am pretty confident I will not achieve millionaire status working at camp), but as long as you live within your means (something our society is pretty awful at) why not spend your life doing what you love? There are so many options out there that with a little bit of creative thinking and hard work I truly believe that everybody can find a job that they love.

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Being Single

I'll be the first one to tell you that I'm a big ol' scaredy cat. Haunted Corn Maze? No thanks. Walking across the field alone in the dark? Not happening. Roller Coasters? Not a chance. I fast forward through the "scary" scenes in Disney movies...let that one sink in for a second. 

As much as I hate all those things I would gladly suck it up and sit in the very middle of the dark field, watching the scene with the wolves from Beauty & The Beast and get on a roller coaster through a haunted corn maze if it meant I could get rid of my ultimate fear. Being Alone.

I joke about being born in the wrong era because as much as I love camp, all I really want to be when I grow up is a 50's housewife. I just want to get married, have babies, dress up in cute dresses and wear pearls and have supper on the table when husband comes home at 5:00. Although I also really want to marry a farmer in which case I want to grow up to be Ree Drummond. Anyway...the point of that is I'm nowhere's close to accomplishing either of those scenarios. So I'm forced to confront my fear everyday. And it's HARD.

My parents have been together since they were in high school and I always assumed that would happen for me too, but it didn't. Then I assumed I would meet someone in university and we'd spend our 20s falling in love and having adventures. That didn't happen either. So I'm constantly being forced to adjust my expectations. I know I don't "need" a husband. But I want one. I know that I am perfectly capable of fostering/adopting children on my own, but again, that's not what I want. 

I'm such a huge believer that everything happens for a reason so I am constantly reminding myself that everything will work out the way it's supposed to work out, even if it's not the way I planned. I pray a lot for patience and also that if I'm meant to meet "the one" and get married that I will be okay with that, because right now I'm not. The thought of going through life single terrifies me, I tell people that my biggest fear is being alone, but I rarely go into details, because just thinking about it makes me cry. 

Within the past six months people I went to high school and university with have really started settling down every holiday brings a new engagement announcement. (Seriously, no holiday is safe. One girl found her engagement ring hidden in a pancake on Shrove Tuesday.) And I want to be happy for them and I am happy, but at the bottom of my happiness is a voice that just keeps asking "Why not me?" it's hard to stay positive and hopeful and faithful that that things are happening (and not happening) exactly the way they are supposed to happen (and not happen). But I am getting better at it and trying to focus on other things and hoping with all my heart that Future Husband is out there somewhere and he is just as excited to meet me as I am to meet him.

Monday, 6 May 2013

Who Would You Be?

 If you couldn't answer with your job, how would you answer the question, 'what do you do'?

 I do lots of things...drink too much caffeine, watch too much Reality TV, get too attached to "characters" on said Reality TV shows. I hang out with a fantastic and adorable bunch of 9 year olds once a week, I babysit, nap, text, eat, craft, walk, yoga...but to me those are all interests and hobbies (and bad habits). My passion is camp, yes it's my job, but really is what I love.

I am incredibly thankful that I am able to work at something I love. And that work rarely feels like work. Maybe that's an exaggeration because I assure you that last summer when the director and I had to get up every hour during the night to do laundry because the dryers broke and we didn't have a laundry attendant yet, felt like work.

And right now when I just got an email that we still haven't found a cook, it looks like a counsellor is going to quit before he starts, another counsellor is MIA, as is the assistant nurse, they were both hired but haven't made any effort to get their contracts signed or reply to e-mails and we're moving to camp in 2 weeks (i.e. 2 hours away from the main office) which makes hiring and other office work difficult.

But it's the kind of chaos I enjoy, and afterwards it makes for great stories (which all of my real life friends are tired of hearing. In university I did one work work term that wasn't camp or working with kids and it was 4 months of what I imagine hell to be like. I worked in the university gym and organized intramurals for students, it was almost 2 years ago now and I still can't talk about it without getting angry and yelling.

Even though I could answer "what do you do?" without referencing my job, it wouldn't be a very accurate or truthful answer. Even when I'm not working I'm reading up on what other camps are doing, searching Pinterest for fun craft ideas or just talking about camp. Camp is a huge part of who I am and it's what I love to do!

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Blog Friends...?

I wasn't going to blog today because the topic for the May Challenge I've been doing is favourite blogging friends...and I don't really have any blogging friends. I've got lots of favourite blogs but I'm pretty new to the blogging scene. I've "met" some people who I really hope to become blog friends with I haven't quite achieved that goal. All that being said I like making new friends so you should definitely comment and introduce yourself if you happen to be stopping by! :) 

Friday I got some super exciting mail! Last year was my first summer at a non-faith based camp and I really under estimated just how much I would miss that element of camp. This year I decided to be pro-active and find some sort of daily devotional for me to use. I searched and I searched to find something specifically for camp staff, or even 20-Something girls, just something that had daily readings. Which turned out to be a near impossible task. Finally I came across Character Building Ministries who have a 10 week devotional specifically for camp staff! Factoring in breaks between each session I'm actually at camp for about 14 weeks, but I can make it work and I am super excited about it!

I am also super excited that 2 weeks from today I will be at camp! Enjoying beautiful sunsets like the one below. Or at least making an effort to really take the time to watch and appreciate the sunset a few times a week in the midst of the various camper and staff happenings. 

Saturday, 4 May 2013

Food for Thought

Today's Every Day in May Challenge topic is favourite quotes!

I love quotes, there's just something about the perfect words strung together to form something bigger that makes me really happy! 

I have so many favourites, but for the sake of just choosing one I've chosen the one below.

I've always been a really big believer that "God is in the details" and I always make a point when I'm doing children/youth ministry to teach that not only is God BIG, but He is also in all of the little things too. I think this quote does a good job of pointing out all the details and the vastness.

Friday, 3 May 2013

Menu Meltdown

The topic for today's Every Day in May is What makes you uncomfortable? I won't lie a lot of things make me uncomfortable but I'm going to focus on the thing that both annoys me, angers me and makes me uncomfortable! Food. Specifically people judging others for what they eat.

I'm what people consider a 'picky eater', which is fine, I'll be the first to tell you that I am in fact a 'picky eater'. The problem is that when most people hear 'picky eater' they automatically assume I eat nothing but french fries and chicken nuggets. Which is totally false. I do like chicken nuggets, but I also know that they're not the healthiest things going and I don't even eat them once a week, never mind once a day. 

One of my favourite meals is salad made with baby spinach, feta cheese, red onion, sunflower seeds and balsamic vinaigrette and it never fails that when somebody sees me eating something like that they feel the need to comment "Oh, I thought you were a picky eater.".  Its as if the minute I mention something about being picky suddenly everyone watches my eating habits with a magnifying glass and it makes me so uncomfortable. 

Just because there are lots of things I don't like (green peppers, sandwiches, deli meats, casseroles...) there are still lots of things that I do like and I would really rather not discuss everyone of my food choices with you. I don't inquire about your protein needs as a vegetarian/vegan or make fun of you for asking about gluten-free options in a restaurant so I would appreciate if you didn't ask me where I get my vitamins or mock me when I ask for my meal with green peppers. 

Thursday, 2 May 2013

Trust Me, I'm An Expert...?

Today's "Blog Every Day in May" Challenge is to educator my reader(s) about something I know a lot about. I think just about the only thing I know a lot about is camp but I'm not sure how my knowledge of soothing homesick campers and living with your co-workers for 3 months without bloodshed is of use to anyone else.

Also, the finale of Big Brother Canada is coming on and I need to focus all my attention on that and not blogging. 

The End.

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

250 Words & What I'm Loving

Today's blog every day in May challenge is Your Life Story in 250 World or Less:

I was born and raised a small town in Nova Scotia, Canada. When I was 7 my parents sent me to the church's summer camp for a week and that shaped me in ways I can't even begin to explain. After I graduated high school I moved further east to attend university. I studied Recreation and minored in Religious Studies, my ultimate life goal is to operate my own Christian Camp/Retreat Center. When I finished university I moved back to my small town and am currently living with my parents. It's been a long year of adjusting to being so far away from university friends but I've survived. I work as the Assistant Camp Director at a summer camp for children, teens and adults with physical and mental disabilities. The biggest question mark in my life right now is figuring out what I'm going to do in September, after camp. In a lot of ways I'm a stereotypical 20-Something single girl trying to figure out where I'm headed in life.


I love that camp in 18 days away!! 
I love that Dollar Drink Days are back at McDonald's! $1 Iced Coffee here I come!!

Speaking of iced coffee...

I love that it's finally iced coffee & ice cap weather! 

I've totally fallen in love with Instagram! I got my iPhone way back in October but never bothered with IG until a few weeks ago. Now I'm totally hooked.