Friday, June 29, 2007

care packages can be sent thusly:

Elizabeth Bashur
c/o Unirondack
8722 Unirondack Road
Lowville, NY 13367

(for those who have asked) :)

the lodge

so, i figure i should start posting some photos from around the camp. this will take a LONG time because there is a lot of camp. also, bear in mind that these photos will not nearly do it justice, and if you think the pictures are pretty you should surely talk to me about coming up here to camp sometime so you can see it in all its glory.

so, i'm starting with the lodge, and a tiny bit of the area around it. our lodge is huge, and beautiful. the original lodge had a fire, and this one was built after that. i'll look up the story and dates, and edit this post.

the lodge is two floors, with an open area in the center, so you can look down from the second floor loft to the first floor, and the fireplace chimney (which is huge) reaches up through the center. the first floor just had a new hardwood floor installed last week.

the main room is in front of the fireplace, and we have couches all around. this is where we have our programming meetings for staff, camp council, sit and talk late at night, drum or play the piano. theres a large room behind the chimney that has a foosball table, a ping pong table, and big built in orange couches, sort of like seats for a diner booth.

upstairs there are big chairs and tables, and books and games all around. huge windows starting on the second floor reach up to the peak of the building letting in tons of sunlight, and a view of the lake. i like to sit up here in the evening with my coffee and write this blog! there are a number a large wooden chairs, "kings chairs" with tall backs. the kids love to sit there while playing board games, and pretend they rule the camp.

there are three trails leading from the lodge. the first goes down a set of steps into the woods, to the art shop, boat house, waterfront, field (for sports) and the campfire circle. a second trail leads to the dining hall and the "sweet" cabins (where i live) a third that leads off to the "woods" cabins, parking area, maintenance cabins (wayne manor), shower house, and the nurses cabin.

there's a small "camp store" built into the side of the lodge, with a window that opens out over the porch so the kids can come and buy snacks and tshirts and things they may have forgotten from home (toothbrushes and stamps and such). the back porch is huge and screened in, with chairs and benches and a view off into the woods.

there are people at all hours in the lodge. they dance, read, write, drum, play piano, drink coffee, have ping pong championships, discuss, sing, etc. the lodge also has wireless, so it is where i'm at whenever i'm posting to this blog. :)

Thursday, June 28, 2007

clay clay clay!

i'm sitting in the lodge tonight, drinking my r.w.knudsen lemon lime spritzer. i'm concerned i may develop an addiction to these things. they have them in the camp store, and we just keep track of how many we drink. it could become a delicious problem.

ups says my art supplies are currently in east syracuse. a mere 4 hours away! i cant wait. 4 boxes of beautiful art supplies. tonight i had the staff all come into the art shop after dinner and play with clay so that we can test out the kiln. i forgot how fun clay is, and how good it feels. i did some hand building today, and i think i may try to throw a piece or two on the wheel tomorrow.

i forgot to mention yesterday that a pair of butterflies have come to live in the art room. they are black and white, and one of them has a tiny tear in his wing. they visit me everyday. (i'm taking name suggestions)

we've had a lot of program meetings the last few days, preparing age based classes and workshops. campers arrive on sunday. only two more days to get ready! our first session, "emerson" is 4-6th graders. after saturday it's pretty much campers back to back the rest of the summer. some of the really busy sessions i'll be a cabin counselor as well as running the art shop. i think i can safely plan on being exhausted, but happy.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

jump in the lake!

so if you've spent your morning sorting dusty boxes of art supplies, a random hodge podge (or should i say "mod podge") of feathers and paper tangles of yarn and silkscreens, and its hot and dusty in your art room, what do you do? JUMP IN THE LAKE! i love having the lake as a constant option. i visit it a few times a day. it's such an amazing luxury.

speaking of luxuries, this morning i ordered $827 worth of art supplies. i think a moment of thanks to you, mom and dad, is in order. thank you for always buying me real art supplies. for all the art indulgence i was given when i was young. thanks to you, i get to spend my summer at the lake, teaching art to campers.

ok, back to the order... i got yarn for the weaving loom, beads of all kinds, sculpy to make our own beads, wax for melting and making candles, paper in tons of colors and textures, clay, glaze, glitter, scissors, colored pencils, brushes, tie dye, and so much more! im excited to say the least. :) and with that, im off to a staff planning meeting.

Monday, June 25, 2007


right now smells like woodsmoke. it sounds like someone playing "blackbird", and ping pong. people talking and shuffling off to showers and bed, and people calling out words for boggle. tonight was our second night with a full staff. we've been working on projects and moving things, and brainstorming a combination of workshops for campers, and pranks to play on campers. they're all so much fun.

today we worked on putting together these modular floating docks and setting them out in the lake. it was brisk at first, but wonderful. a 15'x15' section of docks was at the boat house, and we needed to get it to the swimming waterfront a little ways around the lake. 16 of us hiked up, launched it into the water, climbed aboard, and rowed it like a giant raft. so much fun!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

sunday morning

it was super cold this morning. meaty was huddling under the covers with me, and i was looking for extra socks. walking into the kitchen however was dreamy. it was steamy and warm and smelled like sausages and cinnamon buns. they had already lit a big fire in the dining hall fireplace. i’ve come to really enjoy eating breakfast with 50 people. i think one of my favorite things is the contrast that proceeds the meal. because UU is a non-creedal religion, we don’t have specific prayers or anything that we say, but rather take things from everywhere, so every morning before breakfast someone will suggest some sort of song as a “grace”. its usually something kind of soft like this morning’s “thanks be for friends and daily bread” and it’s this nice sleepy melody, followed by a booming echoing clang 50 folding chairs clang open and we sit down to a hot meal.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

cedar, campfire smoke, and deep woods off

these are my new scents. and there are new sounds as well. frogs and birds and a quiet little wave sound of the lake below my shop. i worked on the art shop for hours and hours today. significant progress has been made, but there is still a long way to go. it was nice to get it opened up, and aired out a bit. i did a lot of sweeping, and dusting off of cobwebs. i have yet to start ordering supplies. i really need to do that right away! i had a couple of workshops with the kids today. the dozen or so kids that are here this weekend are the children of various RE directors that are having a retreat (did i already say that in the last entry?) so they are quiet varied in age for such a small group. the tiny ones are painting rocks, and beading bracelets. the older ones are drawing and knitting. after dinner and cookies the little ones were all sugared up and running circles round the art room. needless to say, i prefer morning session better. i think i'll have more energy for the running once the art room tidy up is finished.

mmmm.... hot shower.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Unirondack! Woo Hoo!

we arrived a little before midnight last night. meaty was the ultimate champ of 12 hours in the car (thats 8 for actual driving, and the rest for stops, including niagra falls). he sat on my lap most of the way, and watched the road go by. john did all the driving.. which was very nice. towards the end we weren't sure we were going to find camp... there was a big lot a 'nothin out there! but when we did, it was beautiful. even in the pitch darkness, with only the suggestion of trees, the amazing stars, and the smell of cedar.

amiee showed us around as much as possible at midnight, and showed me a few cabins. i chose one near the lodge. its lovely. has wooden windows with little curtains, a covered front porch which was great today in the rain, it even has a half bath of its own. it was chilly last night, and this morning john and i woke up, looked out through the curtains, and thought it had snowed! there was all this light area outside the cabin (this was the view through the curtains remember). once we pulled back the curtains, it made a lot more sense. the light area outside was the reflection off the lake. as it turns out, my lovely little cabin is lakeside, and has a wonderful view.

we spent some time in the art room this morning, and i was completely overwhelmed by how wonderful it is. it's far larger than i thought, so much larger than it looked in pictures. there's a nice big deck off the back with a panorama of sparkling lake. it's disheveled now, but i'll work over the next few days to re-organize it and get everything up and running. we had a group of educators come in today for a weekend retreat, and dan (the other director) arrived. there have been lots of neat people to meet, and really it's only a ghost crew.

meaty likes our cabin pretty well, and by tomorrow afternoon i'll have it all appointed and set up. for now i'm going to get to bed. i hardly glossed over everything that happened today, but i'll try to catch up when its not my first day!

with love from unirondack,
meaty and elizabeth

Thursday, June 21, 2007

almost 4am

and im not done packing yet. maybe i shouldnt have watched sabrina and breakfast at tiffany's. my living room is an explosion of art supplies and clothes. im going to sleep for 3 hours. then... DRIVING TO CAMP!!! Woo Hoo!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

2 more days??

plans are changing minute to minute, but in a good way. camp gave me the ok to bring the meatster (i love you already unirondack), but amtrak said no. soooo. i cancelled my train ticket (i was originially scheduled to leave pittsburgh at 11:55 pm, wednesday night) and will now be driving to camp! i actually like this plan much better. as much as i enjoy a train ride, this lets me have more control over making sure meaty is comfy on the way out there, and makes it far easier for me to pack, since i don't need to be ultra organized (not my true talent) to get specially packed boxes on a train.

because of the car accident a few weeks ago nate and i have some enterprise rental days allotted to us. i'm going to use a few of those to get a car to pack and drive to camp. they don't do one way rentals (so i can't just leave the car in new york) so john (always up for adventure) will drive out to new york with me and meat-a-roo. he can check out my new summer home, and then he'll drive the rental back to the 'burgh. (john, you rock!)

i'm currently sitting on my porch at the little house, and it is lovely and rainy out. it smells and sounds amazing. i just got my orientation schedule by email, and i'm soooooo excited. camp is going to be awesome. just the staff orientation week alone sounds like everything i would dream of camp being. it also sounds really relaxed, and doesnt feel at all like a job.. yay! i'm going to summer camp!

Sunday, June 17, 2007

3 more days!

only three more days 'till i get on a train and head off to camp. i'm searching my house for art supplies i've stashed away that may come in handy, and sorting clothes to try to pack. i'm also getting my two houses ready for the renters who will stay there while im gone. i'm not ready to leave, but i am excited about camp!