We’ve moved … to a world where internet runs as smoothly as a model T Ford on some days and a bit like a steam engine on others. At this point I’m not specifying the origin of the smoke. It could be the computer or it could be from my impatience as I wait. and wait. and wait. and wait for my email to load. Cheers to a bit of library time and and the uploading of some long over-due pictures.
Our little family moved to a tiny spot in the mountains of Maryland where David is doing social work at a camp for troubled boys. David isn’t new to camp (he worked as a counsellor for two years at a camp in Pennsylvania), but the camp in Maryland is new. And camp is very new for the boys and I. Some days it feels a bit like pioneering … until I walk down trail and see where the campers live. At least we have running water. And electricity! Because camp is still trying to get established, we temporarily moved into an unfinished basement apartment intended for someone else. In other words, we moved directly into a construction zone. In the last nine weeks, we’ve acquired important things like bathroom and bedroom doors, shelves in the closets, and one week ago LIGHTS! It feels much, much more like a house now.
Even from my vantage point on the outskirts, I can see amazing things happen at camp. Boys come full of bad attitude, scarred from abuse, and sometimes flirting with parole officers. At camp they learn to talk about their anger issues before they explode and how to process life in healthy ways. They learn that all of life has consequences and our choices — good and bad — define what happens to us. Camp for the boys is sometimes fun, games and swimming. Other times it is four hours sitting in the woods trying to solve a problem. It is learning to evaluate what happened and take responsibility for my actions. And eventually it means graduating and going back home with new life skills. David’s role is to work with the families who bring their boys to camp. Sometimes that means talking to mom to let her know what is going on. Sometimes it means visits to their hometown. Sometimes it means helping parents learn how to change the way they parent or the environment at home so a boy has a better chance at being successful. All of the time it means team effort and group work for the campers and staff alike.
Meanwhile, at our house, we are trying to get into a bit of a normal routine. After a summer of swimming, getting a first hand view of cool construction projects, fun times with new friends, and lots of free play time, our boys started school last week. We’re homeschooling for the first time this year and loving it!
I’ve been doing a bit of photography like usual, but without internet at the house, I’ve been slow in getting anything posted. First of all, I want to give a HUGE shout out to the three brides who went through this transition with me. All the brides I’ve worked with in the past have been gracious, but these three deserve a round of applause. Joanne and Eric got married six days before we moved. Every bride wants to see her pictures as soon as possible, but Joanne told me several times to take all the time I needed. Much as I hated it, her pictures took six weeks to deliver instead of the usual month. I think I should have included a medal for patience. A bride wants pictures like a mama bear wants to protect her cubs. Joni and Julia took the brunt of my lack of internet and poor communication. The “prompt responses” become extinct when you check your email once or twice a week. I can text, but not call, on my cell phone because there is no service and until the electrician showed up last week, the land line frequently had loud static and sometimes something sounded like an ice cream truck and you couldn’t call at all. Hopefully now that we have a functional, non-shared phone line, things will go a little better.
And now, it’s time to get on with the real thing! Let’s have some photos!