The first time I took him to camp, he was just 7 years old, in 2nd grade. He was going for a whole week and most parents would have been worried about homesickness, but I had a feeling that wouldn’t be a problem for Blake. He’s about as shy and withdrawn as your average Labrador Retriever puppy! I did make sure that a neighbor of ours was working as a counselor, so he would have someone to go to if he had any problems, but that was about it. I drove him up to the camp, prepared for nerves or tears, but the minute we got there, he was off and playing with a group of kids he’d never seen in his life. I barely managed to grab him long enough to get a kiss goodbye!
My dear sweet friends over at the SITS Girls are having an extra spectacular giveaway. You see, Tiffany, the head SITS girl is the Director of a kids camp, so they are offering a chance for not one, but two kids to go to a gorgeous camp in Catalina California for a whole week.
I’ve been to three of their live events (so far!) and I’ve had such a wonderful time with them, I figure it’s about time I gave my son a shot at it. He’ll even get to bring a friend with him. Maybe even one of my four grandkids – hmmmm.
The camp is being held at Catalina Island Camps. I took a quick tour of the website, and it looks spectacular. They are for boys and girls from 2nd to 11th grade and go from one to four weeks per session in one of the prettiest areas of all California. The camp is held on a gorgeous private beachfront in Catalina and it offers a climbing wall, a ropes course, archery and riflery, wakeboarding, sailing, tubing, kayaking, and paddleboarding. And Mama’s little darling would be all over these activities, especially the archery and riflery – he already has earned Scout badges in these areas.
Blake is the youngest of my 3 boys. He has two much older brothers – ages 22 and 30. I’ll tell you, he is pretty darn amazing. When he was in in elementary school, he endured some pretty severe bullying for almost two years. These kids hit him, chased him, tormented him, chanted songs about him in the lunch room, just about everything you can think of. He was completely ostracized by nearly his whole class. I finally had to get the School Superintendent involved to get it to stop.
After a situation like that, most kids would end up very uncertain, withdrawn, and even sullen and defensive. Not this kid. You can take this boy anywhere, in any group of people, and he will just jump right in with both feet. He has boundless enthusiasm, doesn’t know the meaning of shy and he will talk your leg off at any time day or night on some surprisingly intelligent subjects.
Today at age 13, he’s a very active Scout and an experienced camper. Our Troop camps for a full weekend every month and a week in the summer and he’s already earned his year ’round camping badge – twice. Additionally, he is a part of the Order of the Arrow, the invitation-only Scout Honor Society and he does leadership events with them several times a year.
He’s already making grandiose plans for his Eagle Project – he’d like to either build an enclosure for an animal in the zoo, or a firepit for the homeless people in the park. He also will be attending his second week-long church Mission Trip where the kids spend a week doing home repairs and other service in a depressed area. This year, they are headed to Joplin, MO for tornado recovery work.
I think having a chance to go for a camp experience like this with Catalina Island Camps, would be such a treat for him. It would be an experience that he would always remember and enjoy. I’d love for him to have a fabulous opportunity like this.
Disclaimer: I am entering to win a session of summer camp for a child at Catalina Island Camps from The SITS Girls!