Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Why we send our kids to summer camp

In less than a week, we will drop off our two big kids for a week of summer camp.  As I was getting ready to pack their trunks for a week of fun, it got me to thinking...why do we send our kids to summer camp?

It started over eight years ago when we first looked in to summer camps.  Actually, we didn't find a camp, a camp found us.  We had a college student living with us and she had been a camp counselor at TBarM Christian sports camp located in New Braunfels, Texas.  She knew our kids would love it there and that was recommendation enough for me!  We know there are many, many awesome summer camps out there, but I can vouch for this one.  One of their catch phrases is FUAGNEM - which stands for Fired Up And Going Nuts Every Minute.  They use every minute that they have with our kids to show God's love in an over the top fun way!  Going to camp is one of the highlights for our big kids each and every summer.  So, why summer camp?  Here are my top ten reasons!
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp

*a week (or more!) unplugged from technology*

Do you wish your kiddos had less time in front of the screen?  I know I sure do!  Camp is the absolute easiest way to give your kids a week of no TV, iPad, or any other screen!  It might be tough at first but by the time camp is over, they don't even realize they've been without it!  Camp is an amazing opportunity to pay attention to the world around them!
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
the key to no screen time is keeping them busy!!!

*come as you are*

One of the reasons why my kiddos love camp is because they get to be themselves.  No pressure to fit in - it's come as you are.  If they want to wear the same white shorts for the entire week till they become a shade of dirty brown, they can!  And, yes, my son did that his first year of camp! :)  If they want to wear face paint during the day, they can!  It doesn't matter if they win or lose - their main concern is FUN!
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
that's my girl!  the only one wearing face paint to golf lessons! 

*to try new things*

Summer camp for Colby wasn't much of an adjustment.  He makes friends easy and loves to try new things.  Holden, on the other hand, is a carbon copy of me.  Making friends for her was a little harder and the thought of trying something new scared her.  But, year after year she's tried different things and every year she leaves saying she's going to try something else the following summer.
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer campWhile I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp

*boosts self esteem*

Camp teaches kiddos about accountability.  It teaches them to work as a team.  These traits build kiddos up and show them they can do anything they put their minds to! Overcoming homesickness and fears of the unknown help them to rely on themselves and their faith.  These are not only camp lessons but life lessons.
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
This is Colby the first year he went to camp (notice the GameBoy that was attached to his hand before we left!).  He had just completed first grade.  He looks so little!!!  But, I'm so glad we sent him to camp!  Camp has been an amazing experience for him!

*make new friends*

Camp is great place to make new friends.  With today's social media, it makes staying in touch even easier!  Drop off day is always fun when you run in to friends that you've made in previous years!
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp

*the counselors are amazing*

It takes a special person to be a camp counselor and I thank God that we have been blessed with so many great ones!  These college kids pour love and knowledge into our kiddos.  We could have told our kids the same.exact.thing but hearing it from one of their coaches makes all the difference!  If you have ever been a camp counselor, "thank you from the bottom of my heart!".  You guys are difference makers!
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp

*make amazing memories*

From the theme song each year to the crazy things they do for theme nights we are provided with more fun stories than seem possible.  Weeks after camp is over we are still hearing about, "one time at camp..." and we love it!
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp

*develop independence*

After they get a summer or two of camp under their belts, they are counting down the days till the next summer camp.  They know what they need to pack and eagerly start getting things together.  While at camp, they must keep track of everything they take. These are all tiny ways that kiddos learn independence.  Forgot to pack goggles?  They'll have to either make friends and borrow someone else's or learn to swim without them (this might have happened a year or two in our house!).
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp

*because camp is FUN!*

Camp is crazy fun!  From the moment they get there till they run across the field to reunite with us.  One thing about TBarM - they absolutely do not waste FUN!
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp

*pick-up day is the best!*

Summer camp is awesome for the kids but it's also great for the parents.  It's a time to take a deep breath knowing that your kiddos are in great hands and re-focus on each other.
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
And while a few days without kiddos is awesome, it's hard to beat the hugs that you get on pick up day!  I'm not sure we get hugs that good for the rest of the year!!!  :)
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
I couldn't resist adding a video!  This is last year's theme song.
Not only has this camp given our kiddos an awesome Christian foundation, it also has been a source of encouragement for me.  Talking about my faith and serving others has been made so much easier because of all the things I have learned from TBarM.  And for that, I am forever grateful that our kiddos go to summer camp!
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
future camper!
While I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer campWhile I'm Waiting...Top 10 reasons to send your child to summer camp
Have a fabulous week!  Gig 'em and God bless! 
Holly
Disclosure:  I was not compensated to provide my opinion on TBarM summer camp.  The views, opinions, beliefs and experiences expressed are purely mine. 

and come back tomorrow for the Waiting on...Wednesday link-up - a place where you can link up what you are waiting on, going through, making, anything - as long as it's family-friendly!  :)  
Be sure you check out my FAVORITE link-ups page to see where I'm linking up today.  Stop by and show them some love! :)
While I'm Waiting...link party list
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Much appreciation goes out to Jennie from The Diary of a Real Housewife for featuring my Top 10 Reasons to Send Your Child to Summer Camp! What an honor!  Thank you so much!
The Diary of a Real Housewife

22 comments:

  1. That camp looks soo good! I always went to Church Camp growing up and have some GREAT memories from those times. I hope your kids have a great time this year!

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    1. They have SO much fun!!! There are so many amazing camps around but TBarM is definitely our camp home! Hope you are having a great day!!!

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  2. Love this post! I grew up going to camp every year, and then working at camp all through college. I've thought about writing a post about why your kids should work at camp - for many of the same reasons! I'm stopping by from Tuesday Talk. :)

    http://comehomeforcomfort.com

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    1. Whitney, you should definitely write that post! My oldest can't wait till he's big enough to apply to be a coach! Thank you for all those hours that you spent loving on kiddos at camp! You guys are awesome!!! Thanks for stopping by!

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  3. I can't wait to see how this year is different for the boys! I'm so not anywhere close to being ready to pack their stuff either...at least I know where the linens are but other than that I will be spending my Saturday rounding stuff up I'm sure!

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    1. I keep forgetting they will be at different camps! I have a feeling the boys are going to LOVE Travis! I haven't done anything other than think about packing...I'm sure I'll be up late trying to get everything together! :)

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  4. I love this post and that camp sounds amazing! It incorporates so many of the values our children need and they also get to practice their faith. That's a win-win in itself. I am pinning this to my counseling board on Pinterest to use as a reminder for parents. ~Lowanda

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    1. Thanks, Lowanda! We feel so fortunate to have found a camp home! Thanks for pinning!

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  5. Thanks for this list, Holly. Being a Christian camp is the most important on my list! And yes, I have terrific memories of being both the camper, then the counselor! And also a support worker in the cafeteria( not so much fun! ;) )
    Melinda

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    1. It's hard to believe the amount of fun they have! I'm so glad you stopped by! Hope you are having a fabulous day!

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  6. Love this. I can't wait until my kids are camp aged children. There's a camp on Lake LBJ that I've been eyeing since Jax was born. :) GREAT post :)

    Stephanie @thedishbcs.com

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    1. There are so many great camps around us! It's awesome to be able to have a "camp home". This year Holden will be in New Braunfels and Colby will be at Lake Travis. Both TBarM camps - one is for the younger kiddos and one is for the big kids. Seems like yesterday the thought of sending to Colby to Travis seemed so far away!!!

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  7. I love love love this post! Your kiddos look like they had a wonderful time! I think it is a great idea to send children to summer camp for all at the reasons you stated above. I'll be pinning this for sure!

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    1. Thank you, Lizzy!!! They do have such a great time! I get just as excited as they do! Thanks for pinning and sharing! Have a super day!

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  8. My son loved summer camp this year! It was our first time. He grew in all the areas you mentioned. He also learned new games he's been sharing with his friends.

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    1. They do have awesome games that our kiddos LOVE to play!!! Thanks for stopping by! I hope you have a great day!

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  9. Hi Holly!

    I agree with all your reasons for sending your kiddo's to summer camp! I went a few times when I was younger and I loved it! Thank you for sharing at Dream. Create. Inspire. Link! I hope we'll see you there again tonight!

    Cat

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    1. Thanks, Cat! I'm so glad our kiddos have a camp that they love and look forward to!

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  10. Found this post and loved it! I am Texan raised, married a California boy and we work at a camp in Southern California at Palomar Christian Conference Center. Parents need to know how camp can impact their kiddos! Thanks so supporting camps!

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    1. Hi, Charity! Funny how us Texas girls are drawn to those California boys! :) I bet working at a camp is a lot of work but also a lot of fun! I know our kids look forward to going each and every year! I'm so glad you found my post!

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  11. Sharing this for my kick off today on Instagram.

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    1. Thanks, Michelle! Really appreciate you sharing this post! Camp is near and dear to our hearts!!!

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