Before I came to camp I had so many plans.
I planned to write a blogpost about our trip at least once a week, check in with my wonderful e mail community at alyharte.com every two weeks, make at least three mugs in the pot shop at camp, draw in my spare time, and climb all the 46ers the glorious Adirondacks have to offer.
But go figure, I haven’t done any of it or at least I haven’t yet and time is running by fast.
I have been in the States for almost seven weeks and my boys for just under six.
What a whirlwind blast we have had!
Our days start in the dining room where we hold hands before the meal and wait until everyone is quiet before beginning to pile up our plates with the homegrown wholefoods from our well nourished garden on campus.
‘Council’ comes after tent clean up and allows the campers to choose which activity they want to be a part of for the morning session. As I can see in my six year old, the opportunity to DECIDE all by yourself, for yourself from six to ten amazing child centred activities EVERY single morning, and then for three more periods a day,
is a dream come true.
From heart racing activities such as field football or “sit down ball” to quiet games, weaving, cardboard castle building and water colour painting right through to making actual pots on a pottery wheel or a wooden ship in the wood shop is nothing short of amazing when you’re a kid.
I think the big thing as a parent looking inward to the camp life that we have and seeing how our boys interact and how they behave, is absolutely and emotionally refreshing.
I am almost in tears as I type because I feel this Summer has been a game changer for our sons.
Albeit when we get back to normal life of School, sibling fights and power rangers RPM the table manners will fade and the need for television quiet time will creep in.
But for now it is nothing short of incredible to see how kids can be in an environment where watches are sparse , the pace of life is slow yet productive, and the sense of community is full and real and untouched by hectic horns blowing and over stimulation.
Furthermore these kids are protected by a body of adults who want to be here growing alongside them and escaping the world of busyness and embracing a similar peace and free choice. It is special.
I could write a billion things that have moved me this Summer but I wanted to simply put some short thoughts across even to remind myself that despite the full schedule I have as a programme head and a parent to small children,
the wonder of this place rules over all the adult infused worldly worry and exhaustion that sometimes creeps in.