Postcards from Week 2

Here we are checking in at the close of Week 2, with 2 more weeks to go!
This week 2 pairs of Teams have each doubled up, one pair in Orillia Ontario and the other on Gordon’s First Nation in Saskatchewan.
I’ll give you a little update on everybody: –
Team 1-
Mark and Mariejoy have been spending this week at Fort Haldimand on the Gaspé Coast of Quebec. It has been a pretty challenging week, starting off with the 16hour bus journey just to get there 😊.
The number of Campers has been very small, averaging between 6 & 8 each day. It is very hard to implement various parts of the program with such a small group especially since they also had no local helpers. We have talked together at the end of almost every day and I have tried to offer some strategies, which I hope have helped just a bit! Because they are also billeted on site they have been provided with groceries and need to also do their own cooking, an additional task after long and tiring days. The Team has remained cheerful and hopefully they each feel that their time at Fort Haldimand has made a positive impact on this small group of Campers.
Teams 2&3-
Lauren, Rachelle, Alexandra & Nathan have spent this week together as a big “double Team” in Orillia. This church has hosted our program for several years so things are well organised with good local helpers, the correct supplies and the most important ingredient –plenty of enthusiasm 😊. There have been approx. 30 Campers, which is a good number for presenting the Program but not so big that chaos ensues!
Teams 4&5
       Patrisha, Maynard, Emmanuel & Kathleen have also doubled up this week, which has ben invaluable since the Day Camp @ Gordon’s First Nation is notoriously one of the largest with close to 100 Campers, although they never all turn up the same time so attendance has averaged out at 50-60 each day. Helpers are also sporadic, sometimes on site and sometimes not, so having a 4 person Team has been a real blessing. This is always a challenging Camp since many of the children come from very difficult family circumstances, which understandably translates into their exhibiting negative behaviours that require extra vigilance on the part of the Team 😊.
Team 6-
Kelvin & KC have enjoyed a great week at Christ the King Church in Edmonton. This Day Camp has great facilities in a school building and also has very experienced helpers and a stellar Coordinator who has tons of experience with our Program. I think they had about 30 Campers although their next Camp is expecting twice that number. Hopefully their energy level is still high as they catch a flight early tomorrow to their Week 3 destination in Vancouver. 
And that’s a wrap for Week 2 on the Team front! 
           At home it has been a week with a couple of sad good-byes. On Tuesday Janice came for her last visit with me before her departure, today, for Vancouver where she will be married 2 weeks from today and where she will be taking up a new position as an IVCF Staff Worker at Simon Fraser University. Janice also picked up a large watercolour poster she had asked me to paint and which will be used in place of a more conventional Guest Book at the wedding (think giant jars of Bubble Tea, with wedding guests signing their names in the bubbles 😊).
         Thursday evening Natalie and Andrew also came for a farewell dinner as they prepare to leave later this month to take up a new season of their life in the state of Washington, where Andrew’s family lives.
     Sarah and Alexander were here for dinner on Wednesday (no, they are not moving away!) when they told me all about their recent vacation in Iceland. They brought me back 2 skeins of lovely Icelandic yarn, which I will be excited to knit.
     In between all the cooking, I’ve worked in the garden, which is still super dry although we did have one short thunderstorm with some rain on Monday night plus I’m also starting to work on Christmas gifts, since if a puppy comes into my life in the late Autumn there won’t be much time for crafting!
This afternoon I’m beginning work on this year’s Chicken Awards but before I get out my painting materials let’s close off with a recipe.
       When Natalie and Andrew came to dinner I made Watermelon & Feta Salad, it makes a great summer supper, served with a loaf of crusty bread.  
Watermelon & Feta Salad
  • 8oz. Feta
  • 1 small seedless watermelon
  • a handful of lemon balm leaves
  • 2 Tbsps. red wine vinegar
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • ½ tsp. fleur de sel
  • ½ cup pistachios
Remove the rind from the watermelon and cut the flesh into roughly 1” chunks. Place in a shallow serving bowl. Combine the lemon balm, vinegar, salt and oil in a food processor and blend well. Pour the dressing over the melon chunks. Crumble the feta over the salad and sprinkle with the pistachios. Chill for 1 hour before serving. Serves 3-4.
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