Day Camp has started.
For the first week I had a class of wonderful little 3rd graders. I was able to establish my authority pretty quickly, and I think there'[s only a little bit of pride in my motivation to say that the 3rd grade is the best behaved. It's probably actually the 5th grade, but they barely have 10 kids, and 3rd has 15 to 20. There are volunteers that come in for a day or a week at a time to help out with day camp, who are sometimes helpful and sometimes take as much management as the kids. ;)
Tony is the director of the day camp, and has been running camps for the last 35 years or something crazy like that. He said that our first day was the smoothest first day in his experience. God definitely blessed us. But he kept us humble, because the next two days were pretty hard for everyone. We have to continually remind ourselves in the midst of children who seem determined to get into fights and generally be disruptive that we serve a God who is slow to anger and abounding in love. There was one time in particular last week that I felt myself wanting to throttle a kid. And I'm not an angry person. It actually surprised me. But God is gracious.
Today I actually started working in the garden. Eight middle school students, one volunteer and I are tackling a community garden just down the street from my house that was planted but neglected. So we've got our work cut out for us. Lots of weeding and harvesting (yay!) and watering and even some planting! It looks like I won't be able to spend as much time with my third graders. I actually wasn't with them all day today. They missed me, and I missed them!