Reincarnated As A Mother

Monday, December 15, 2014


This is one of those times when mere words will never be
able to capture what took place over the past four days.
Camp Rainbow Gold took about ten families with children
fighting cancer up to the mountains just outside Sun Valley.
There were so many wonderful moments--
moments never captured on camera.
But here are a few highlights...
starting with the big circle we all formed to say thanks before every meal.
 One of our favorite things about Winter Retreat is the passing of the microphone around
after every meal (and the donning of a silly hat) to "Shine".
Shines can be shining for the yummy food, for  a brave sibling,
for the people who took us snow shoeing or paint balling etc.
My sweet girls shined after every breakfast, lunch and dinner.
We sure had a lot to be grateful for.
 Our days were filled to the brim-- with dances, scavenger hunts,
games, snow play, snow shoeing and  paint ball shooting in the snow (as mentioned),
a kids night (full on carnival) and a parents night where we all opened
up, shared our stories, our fears, our anger and ourselves.
We laughed a lot (and cried quite a bit too).
The children loved every minute--
made the coolest crafts,
from these ice ornaments...
 to jewelry, trinkets and gifts.
 Each family was also asked to decorate a Gingerbread
house for the big camp competition.
We kind of cheated a bit and joined forces with our
good friends, the Moretti's.  We went with them to camp 
last year.  They lost their son, Anthony a few months back
so we were so glad they made it back to camp.
The Moretti's won first place last year and we came in second.
 And not only did we have fun working together
but we kinda went overboard.
 We created a Camp Rainbow Gold Lodge-- complete with
Santa on the roof...
 and a roof that comes off - to peek inside to see a Christmas tree,
a fireplace in the corner (with an LED light behind it)
and a cat carved out of chocolate-- thanks to Byron's
mad talents.
Of course, Kean wasn't much help with the decorating
and couldn't go snow shoeing or paint balling.
So dear Larissa-- our very own camp counselor
and a cancer survivor herself,
loved on him and he loved on her.
He had a fabulous time-- and if he could talk, I know he'd say how
happy he was to break out of house arrest.
Our last night, we had a giant Christmas Carol sing-a-long
and talent show.
It is camp tradition to sing the "Badger" song-- please
request it, if you come to visit our home.  The girls,
I'm certain, will be more than willing to teach you
this catchy little song.
 My brave girls got up and sang a few songs on their own
(they don't get that from me).
 And Holland and Greer somehow talked some of the
camp leaders into letting them do "blind makeovers"
in front of everyone.
The big man himself even came to visit and take pictures
with each family.
  And then the evening always culminates in the "Wish Cone"
ceremony.  Everyone writes special notes, ties them to
pine cones and then throws them in the camp fire to send
the messages up to heaven.
It is a beautiful, somber and moving experience.
Especially, since two of the families at the camp
had lost their sons to cancer.
 We feel very blessed to be able to be a part of
CRG's Winter Retreat.
Almost makes going through this cancer journey
worth it.
Okay, not quite, but it sure makes it easier and 
it sure makes you feel loved.
Very loved.