Day 13: Down by the bay, house building all day, and a white water rafting foray!

Thursday, July 14, 2017

Homesteaders are on tiptoes watching
 boats finish the White Water Rafting Race. 
Today was a VERY wet day. We started our day by singing our lungs out with new and old songs. We worked hard on painting and putting together houses and made time for team building games AND an impromptu white-water rafting session.

But let's begin at the beginning:
At singing we were chased by a bear and learned a weird new song about Unicorns, as well as singing many, many favorites. Right now we're seriously in love with the Wee-Wee and Jeep songs (ask your Homesteader). Our final and most epic song was Down by the Bay, which really took on a new life of its own today. You may have heard this popular children's song: "Down by the bay, where the watermelons grow is a song your Homesteader can sing for you. Its got a fun and catchy chorus with rhyming verses between. We were singing without the aid of the Village songbook Josh, one of our All-Star Junior Counselors, started making up verses of his own. We kept singing the chorus, and then someone else jumped in! After the first person made up their own, it was as if people couldn't stop thinking of new verses. The song went on and on, and we got more and more creative on both the lyrics and the better and better as we went. The energy was high and everyone was smiling as we headed out to the land to see how Peeps survived the night.

Returning with Peeps, and noticing that EVERYTHING IS WET. EVERYWHERE.

If you live in Nelson or the surrounding area, you know already that last night and this morning was a veritable deluge. The land can't hold much more water. We found the remnants of last week's campfire floating in the ring. Good thing we have dry wood on reserve!

After getting our Peeps, we retreated inside to get out of the wet and get to work on our houses. 

After snack we split into two groups to play improv games and face a team-building challenge.   One group started with Josh, who used his well-honed Improv skills to share new games that encourage creativity and build communication skills. The other group began with an activity entitled "Helium Hoop," in which the idea was to lower a hula hoop to the ground without losing contact with straight-pointed fingers. 

It's going down!

Though the activity uses a normal hula hoop, it takes on incredible levitating properties when a group tries to support it with each just two outstretched fingers.  At first, neither could get the hoop to even stay level--it just kept rising above their heads or sliding off to the side. Each time the group tried and found they could not do it, they stopped and were allowed time to reflect on what went well and what strategies they might want to try next. Each group struggled, but neither gave up. Through much trial and error, each group was able to find ways to work together.  Both groups noticed that the more they became quiet and used directive feedback, the more they could focus on their own contribution to the task in relation to their group and the more successful they became! Eventually, each group developed a strategy that led to their success. The sense of accomplishment that each group experienced as the hoop was laid to the ground was tangible--more smiles all around.

After lunch the skies cleared enough for us to want to play outside. We took advantage of the wet and created rafts to ride down the "white water" streaming past the Chalet on Leadmine Road. With some lumber and a few types of adhesive, in pretty short order Peeps and imaginary passengers had rafts to ride down the rapids.

Frank Shorterer riding the rapids
Cheering along her boat.

Creating Rafts

There were many designs, but the most successful featured a combination of a light body and some sort of waterproofing (i.e. careful layers of duct tape). All others either let on too much water or were too heavy to ride the rapids to the end of the race course.

While some raced the rapids outside, many continued working inside.

YESSSS!!!! I finished my house! 
A VERY fancy hanging Royal bed. 

The end of our day was still too wet to play big outside games, so we settled on Ninja and frisbee games outside under the shelter of the trees and board games inside.  Family Business was a hit and was played with vigor--alliances were forged and broken as the cards were laid down.

Fast and furious action in a game of Family Business.

Plusses for today: 
  • Down by the bay!
  • My house is almost finished. 
  • I got my shingles on. 
  • Playing Frisbee. 
  • My boat didn't sink!
  • Selling two pets!
  • Sitting,
  • Sheep! 
  • I went from boat race loser to boat race winner!
  • Selling the bed and hammock I made. 
  • White water rafting race! (Many people said this.)
  • Painting my house (x2)
  • The ROYAL bed. 
  • Family business!
  • Finished my house!!!! (YESSSSS!!!!)
  • All the crazy improvised games from today!
Wishes for today: 
  • More verses tomorrow. 
  • Get my house done tomorrow. 
  • Play more family business!
  • That my shingle roof works!
  • My hand isn't too hurt. 
  • That her hand isn't too hurt. 
  • That I sell more pets. 
  • Sitting!
  • Sheep. 
  • April. 
  • That people stop eating the worms!
  • That it STOPS RAINING. 
  • Nail my house together tomorrow. 
  • The puddle won't eat us!
  • Finish family business. 
  • Fish in a fine dish. 
  • Better weather!


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