I am nearing the end of a truly amazing summer. In the past several months I've been blessed with some amazing experiences, and have gotten to make new friends from all over the country. I just want to share a few examples:
I went to church camp at Camp Connelly outside of Powell Butte for the first time ever, as a part of the youth leadership team. It was an amazing six days, with so much love, laughter, pranks, "family" and God. It filled me up and continues to be a source of strength.
The next month I flew across the country to Tennessee, for the Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) National Convention, and the National Institute on Cooperative Education (NICE). At FBLA I competed in Job Interview, and unfortunately didn't make it past the preliminary round. But, the highlights of that adventure included going to the Nashville Parthenon, where Percy Jackson and the Olympians was filmed, seeing the Charlie Daniels Band preform at the Grand Ole Opry, and a delicous pulled-pork sandwhich from Hog Heaven. At NICE, I was one of two students from Oregon, and, along with learning and experiencing much from the conference, I got to compete in the Outstanding Youth Scholar Competition. I am proud to say that I not only made finals, but won, and am the Outstanding Female Youth Scholar, representing all coops on the nation. And while that was a high light, the best part of NICE was getting to meet new friends, in a smaller setting, playing Mao and in our Stu-Cos, and of course, Dollywood. AAAAAA!
Most recently, I went on a family camping trip. As my mom put it, picture "My Big Fat Greek Wedding", up in the woods, and you have our family. It was a wonderful way to spend my birthday, surrounded by people I love, having a great time. It's always special to spend time witht the babies of the family while they are so young, because I can't help but remember how fast time goes.
So now, I'm back at home. I've found a job, for the next month, doing some office work before I leave for school. It can't go fast enough. I recieved my dorm information from U of O about a week ago, (I'm in Walton) and I was ready to pack up and go then! It's been a challenge being in the middle of who I've been, as a kid, and soon to be an adult, headed off to college. I've been a little insecure, and unsure, trying to figure it all out. Days go by though, some where I think I know what I'm doing, others when I don't. Great friends and family have been a big help though, as I'm sure they'll continue to be when this strange little duck finally leaves the nest.
Until then... Sunshine!