Sunday Reflection Series: Growh

Spring has sprung which means it is time for the Earth to regrow. Although in Canada we can never be certain exactly when the last snow of the season is we know it is coming and with it the blossoming of trees, new baby birds in nests, and the hum of bumblebees around the flowers. The Earth is growing and so are we. Some of the growth we can see, by marking our height on the wall, the need for a larger pair of shoes, or learning we no longer need to sit in a car seat.

The more important and more meaningful growth cannot always be seen. It is growing as a person, learning life skills, growing in faith, growing friendships, growing resilience. New experiences give us the chance to grow, learn, and have new experiences. Growth does not come without risk and trust. If we stay in the world we know, without stepping outside to try something new we may not ever be able to discover some of the best parts of who we are. Camp is not only where we play, it’s where we learn, take risks, and grow.

“[Camp] had an immeasurable impact on my family and me. For my father, my brothers and I, being campers and counsellors … taught us much about nature; about responsibility; and most importantly, about ourselves.” - Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada

Sunday Reflection Series: Ways our Campers Say "I Love You"

We know some children have a hard time saying those three words. With Valentines Day just past we thought we would share some of the ways our campers share their love.

In What They Say...

"Can I braid your hair?"

"Can I sit beside you?"

"Look at what I did in Arts & Crafts today!"

"How are you feeling today?"

 

In What They Do...

Pour their friends a glass of water or juice.

Hold the door open.

A high five!

Sit with a friend who was sitting alone.

 

 

Sunday Reflections Series: New Years and Change

We are so close to 2018 and we at Sparrow Lake Camp are all looking forward to the changes that 2018 will bring. Change can be a very nerve-wracking topic filled with uncertainty and dread. Although change can be difficult to face, the impact that adversity has on an individual is inspiring. A camper’s first time at camp, for example, puts them in a new environment. It is, perhaps, their first time from home or first night away from their family. They are mingling with life-long campers, staff, and other new campers. There is measurably less structure than in school. All of this is a massive change. Maybe it’s their first time staying in a bunk bed and they may learn that they do not like sleeping at a height. All of these changes may seem miniscule but this is a big step for many children. Being able to grow through this experience can create more resilient and adaptable children. With a New Year comes New Year’s Resolutions, or positive change. It is this commitment and resilience that we try to instill in every camper that we hope contribute to their ability to enact positive change.

Our New Years Resolution at Sparrow Lake Camp is to Spend More…

Spend more time with friends

Spend more energy out in nature

Spend more days exploring and learning

Spend more thoughts reflecting and being thankful

Spend more conversations complimenting and improving each other

Spend more evenings around a campfire

Spend more laughs with new friends

Sunday Reflections Series: Take a Breather, Take a Break

One of the best parts about Sparrow Lake Camp is the ability it has to disconnect us from the ‘real world’ and gives us the opportunity to sit in nature and just reflect. Life gets busy, and with school in full swing for campers and many of our staff, it can be hard to take a break. For parents, holidays are right around the corner and sometimes there may just not be time between shuttling your child from swimming to hockey to dance. We all lead busy lives and that’s why this Sunday Reflection is focused around the idea of taking a breath and taking a break.

It is increasingly easy to get swept up in daily life and not take a minute to just sit and reflect. Focusing on breathing, meditating, or journaling allow us to pause and reflect on life and our purpose. It gives us the opportunity to think of things bigger than ourselves and reminds us how precious life truly is. I woul like to challenge the Sparrow Lake Community in the next month to take a minute and reflect on what is truly important.

With some of our younger Sparrow Lakers this may seem daunting but here are a few ways we can reflect as a family. End each day with a ritual. Some of my personal favourites include naming something you’re grateful for that day, or saying your ‘Rose, Bud, Thorn’ (Something great from today, something that didn’t go as planned, and something you are looking forward to). By practicing methods of reflection it is easier to put things into perspective and evaluate the bigger picture instead of dwelling on the negatives.

Where I am the weather is cooling and the air is getting crisp. Take a purposeful breath outside, although the chill may hit I find it’s a great way to remind myself of what I may take for granted most days. It’s a breath you can feel go in which is a beautiful reminder as to how special life is.

 

Breathe out doubt; breathe in assurance

Breathe out worry; breathe in peace of mind

Breathe out hatred; breathe in love

Breathe out war; breathe in peace

Breathe out turmoil; breathe in harmony

Breathe out insecurity; breathe in God’s presence

Breathe out emptiness; breathe in fulfillment

Breathe out selfishness; breathe in generosity

Breathe out darkness; breathe in God’s everlasting light