Thursday, July 29, 2010

Let's Hear It for the Boy!

This is my little brother at one our church buildings in Austria, when he went on his choir tour a year ago.

My little brother, Todd (or Elder Kupfer now), left for his mission to Orlando, Florida, on July 21. We are so excited for him. But how crazy is that?!? It definitely makes me feel old. My little brother is growing up!

Sometimes people want to go on exotic missions, which honestly would be really cool, but I think state-side missions are sometimes even harder than foreign missions. The people here aren't as humble as they are in other countries. Americans are spoiled and too proud sometimes. I think there will be a lot more distractions in the United States as well. Although he won't be trudging through jungles or learning a difficult foreign language, I know that he will have to work hard in order to bring people closer to Christ.

I know he will be a great missionary. He is friendly, compassionate, and strong in his convictions. We'll be praying for his safety and success. We love you and miss you already, Elder Kupfer!!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

At the Beginning with You

Three years ago, I married my best friend. Being apart for five out of seven days of the week has made me realize how lucky I am to have him in my life.

We've learned a lot, but we still got a long way to go!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Girls Camp 2010

Unless you have been to girls camp, it is hard to describe what it's like. Unless you experience it, it is hard to understand why girls and leaders get excited about going.

But I'll try to illustrate what happened at our camp this year: Mission Possible 2010. (Sorry I don't have more pictures.)

I led the fourth years (15-year-olds), and we had a blast!!

These are some of my girls. They are amazing and gorgeous!!!

When we helped the kitchen staff prepare for breakfast, we grouped the boxes and then color coordinated them to make a rainbow. Only girls would take the time to do that. Love it!

Three of the four amazing Chicks in Charge on the fourth day at camp. But the four also refers to fourth years. Yeah! hehe.

Here they had to stand on a tarp and flip it over without stepping off.

Notice how two girls are holding on to each other. They became best friends during camp. I hope they never let go of each other.

During their "Rough Out" earlier this year, they came up with a phrase that we continued at camp--"There's a badge for that." We made sashes and badges for them to "earn." They earned badges when they completed their certification, which were the serious ones and the ones we made before camp, but they could also make badges for any of the silly things they did as well. I made a ton of the "Bug killer" badges. They made badges for braiding hair, using water guns, completing a couple of epic "Gotcha Good" moments on the Chicks in Charge, squeezing all the fourth years in the four wheeler we occasionally used, spilling something on one of my badges (I was the only one that earned that badge), putting one of the funniest skits in the stake, passing on the camp's chain curse of the chicken hound (a freaky green, warped figure of a chicken-dog hybrid), and so much much more!! There was even a badge for our saying: TABFT= There's a badge for that.

Here is my sash. I don't have all the badges that all the girls had, but at least you can see some examples.

The star badge is for identifying constellations, the fire one is for gathering firewood and starting a fire, and the red cross one is for First Aid. I earned the "I'm a Clutz" badge because I spilled something on it. The blue one with the arrows is for recycling, and the star one with the book was for reading their scriptures every day.
I baked cookies before I went to camp, so I got the cookies badge. The one with lightning and a tornado is for severe weather training.

TABFT= There's a badge for that. We surrounded the Chicks and their room with Caution tape, so we all earned that badge. The one at the right is all of us piled into the four wheeler, called a Gator. It's the Gater Done badge. :)

Hailey and Maycie definitely earned their First Aid badge.

Making badges!!

We made a lot of fun memories, too many for anyone to read with patience, but one of my memories is when we did a workshop with a real mousetrap. One girl was blindfolded, and her coach would vocally guide her hand over the mousetrap. When her hand was over the mousetrap in a safe position her coach instructed, "Clamp," and the blindfolded girl would slam her hand over the mousetrap and hold it there so she wouldn't get snapped. For some girls, this was a scary activity. The blindfolded girl had to trust her coach, and she had to ignore all the other people who were told to give the blindfolded girl false instructions. Recognizing the right voice was essential to making this activity work. We had a very special experience with that mousetrap, and I think those girls really learned. I know I did.

No, Lynita isn't holding Ciara's hand. She's holding down the mousetrap, so it won't snap.

Gina's turn. Emily is worried. haha!!

Gina says, "No sweat. I wasn't worried."
Elizabeth guides Sara. They completely trusted each other. So sweet!

This time, everyone helped guide Elizabeth.

I love girls camp. It provides an environment where girls can be free from the distractions, expectations, and judgments of the world. It's a place where girls can be silly with each other, where they sing goofy songs, where they make friends and memories they will cherish for a lifetime. It's a place where they can feel that they are truly loved not only by each other or their leaders but by the Lord for who they are. I can see a lot of amazing potential in these young girls. I'm so glad I had the opportunity to spend the week with them.

I can confidently say that our goal to make girls camp special was achieved. Mission accomplished.