How precious are Your thoughts to me, O LORD ... how vast is the sum of them!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Surfeited Summer

Life has been chock full of interesting experiences for me lately. Let’s see if I can cover them all in one blog post today!

At the end of June, I spent about a week in Nebraska with some dear friends. I experienced several firsts—first time milking goats (my hands got so tired!), first time helping with calf branding (probably the hardest work I’ve ever done), first time actually directing a horse while I was riding him instead of just sitting back and following a trail. These real-life, out-of-the-ordinary-for-me experiences really enriched me. The time in the unfilled countryside was so refreshing, and the close fellowship with my friends was so sweet.

Nebraska is for the most part wide open country. Southwestern Nebraska, my location, was full of steep hills that gave intrigue to the landscape and made up for the general deficiency in trees. Where trees did take root, however, they were thick and healthy. Mostly there were cattle, horses, corn fields, and wheat fields, but there were also houses, small towns, and wildlife. I was fascinated by the homes built into hillsides, the descendants of Little House on the Prairie-style dugouts. It seems I can’t go anywhere without being reminded of a book or an author; Nebraska is the state of Willa Cather, whose book My Antonia made a big impression on me several years ago. Her books had a big presence at the used bookstore I visited, as did the books by Elinore Pruitt Stewart, a woman who wrote about her homesteading life nearby in Wyoming.

The second week of July, I had a precious friend come stay with me for a bit, and we drove up to be staff members at a Bible camp in Oklahoma. I’ve gone to this camp for eleven years now, and every year is an incredible spiritual event in my life. This time was no exception. I love getting to serve here now that I’m older, but I’m always out-blessed.

When I got back from that camp, it was time to get fully prepared for a local music day camp that took place the first week of August. It was fun putting different creative muscles to work—planning crafts, doing a collage board, choreographing a dance, researching history, writing discussion outlines, and of course listening to music. The kids were fun to teach and interact with, and the other teachers were such gracious and talented people. Our theme was 1950s and ’60s music…talk about catchy songs! They’re still taking turns whirling in my head.

Using clothes as a teaching tool was fun - 1950s

Interspersed with all this, plus working and teaching karate, I’ve been developing my proofreading business. I’ve had almost nonstop projects since June, praise God. Fitting creative writing into that has been a challenge, but I’m still feeling my way forward and hope it will all slide into place once I get comfortable with the schedule and new routine.

So now you know how my summer has been! How about yours? Busier or slower than normal? What new experiences have you had?


  1. Fun! The music thing sounds especially fun. I enjoyed this update.
    I've had a busy summer but in a good way. I got to go to a dear friends sweet 16 party even though she lives several hours away, I went on 2 camping trips with my family and spent three weeks in a small farming community helping out with a kids program out there. I'm going on another vacation with my family soon. Out of all of my 16 summers this may be one of the best :)

    1. That's wonderful you had such a great summer, Eliza! Long trips to be with friends are so worth it. How fun that your family goes camping together! And that three weeks spent with the kids' program sounds like a very rewarding experience. Every child should get the chance to be in the country and learn about farming.
      Haha, that's right! I think this may have been one of my best summers, too! Thank you so much for sharing your experiences here. :)

  2. It sure sounds like you had an interesting time this summer. Riding and interacting with horses and goats and branding calf's. These are only things I can only dream about............. Kelsey you have your whole life open to you right at the end of your fingertips. Creating and preparing to going to open the minds of children to receive their Savior has to be the most fulfilling thing and exciting Part of your summer. As my Mother always told me "Do all of your traveling while you are young and healthy." We went to 10 countries now we are old and have bad knees so these are only memories. Do everything you want, travel and experience life. Do these things while you are young and healthy...we do not know our future.

    1. Thank you, Aunt Joanne! I certainly loved my summer and am so thankful for all the opportunities I had. Yours and Grandma's advice is very good, and I will strive to follow it. :) I think that's so neat that you've been to 10 countries!
      Thank you for your comment!