celebrating summer camp

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keeper of 1000 sunsets, infinite songs, miles & miles of hikes and so much laughter and love: Mar Lu Ridge.

I could go (& have gone) on & on about what camp taught me and the ways it has shaped me. I recognize gifts that MLR gave me in my daily life & work, at FLBC & beyond.

These days, I’ve been especially grateful for the work ethic my summers at camp instilled in me & the true belief that conversations and story sharing can change lives. A week at summer camp or a weekend retreat can be deeply transformational for children, youth & adults. I am so lucky to see the spirit at work every day, as I watch people open up and grow in themselves as they spend time out in nature & in community. I’m endlessly thankful for places like MLR & FLBC that facilitate time apart, time to experience the glory of creation & time to slow down and think a little harder about these lives we lead.

I truly, truly believe that outdoor ministry changes lives & encourage you to support a camping program wherever you might be. This month is “I love camp” month in the MD/ DE & Metro DC synods of the ELCA- the synods that directly support MLR. Download the I ❤️ MLR! sign here & submit your own photo!

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cottage living

IMG_8198-0I woke up to two inches of fresh snow and fog rising off the lake, blending with the mountains and reflecting the morning sun. This weekend was busy and tiring but entirely joy filled. Having a group of kids at camp always lifts my spirits, but this weekend I got to lead the retreat, rather than just be the person at meals. It felt so good to be leading games and songs, watching the kids laugh together and support each other. Spaces like camp are special, important and meaningful & I will never stop believing that.

Today is for rest, after 48 hours of shouting, singing, laughing, skiing and working. The light this morning was stunning and I thought I’d take advantage of it & take a few photos of my little house, and the pieces of it that make it my home.

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This ivy was on the brink of death when I found it outside a cabin this fall. Inside, near my huge picture window, it’s doing much better.

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Ginny bought me these two prints about two years ago, with no knowledge that I’d be moving to Montana in the future. The wood wall hanging is made from trees that grew and were harvested at Mar Lu Ridge, my forever home.

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little comforts.

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plants & mountains, always. (banner by ginny)

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Maybe one day I will make my bed every morning, but that day has not yet come.

I am anxiously awaiting warmer days, when I can eat outside on the porch in the evening, and string my hammock up under the deck. Until then, it’s not a bad spot to watch the snow fall.

giving thanks (these days)

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for sunset walks in a labyrinth designed by a lady I love dearly.

for hikes with my father through our mountains.

for veggies and fruit picked straight from the Earth.

for my mama’s quiet smile and hard work as she watches her summer camp thrive.

for my morning runs on the canal, watching the Queen Anne’s lace swirl in the breeze.

& for space to reflect and grow.