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Friday, July 31, 2009

CANADA!!!!!

Hi everybody!!!

Where do I even start? This trip was so amazing, so fun, so spectacular and awesome, that I don't even know how to begin.

Okay *deep breath*. I guess I'll start at the beginning.

On Sunday, at eight thirty, we left Open Door (my church) in two vehicles, one for the girls, one for the guys (Five guys: Bonoville [his real name is Daniel, but everyone calls him Bonoville], Luke, Landen, Evan, and my bro, Josh). There were five girls: Ruthie, Jenna, Tarra, Becca, and me. The car ride there was amazing, but very long. Nine hours. I was laughing practically the whole time. Ruthie and I were also singing Love Remains The Same, I'm Yours (LOVE THAT SONG!!!), Umbrella, How To Save A Life, Hot And Cold, and the National Anthem at the top of our lungs until Tarra snapped at us to shut up :D. We took pictures, laughed over stupid things, talked, giggled, sung, danced, ate snacks, and Ruthie slept a little bit.

When we got to Canada (crossing the border with no issues), we drove straight to the church in which YouthWorks was hosted. The church was big, musty, and old, but it was awesome to stay in. The bathrooms were like twenty miles away from the bedrooms, but *shrugs* that's okay.

Ruthie, Jenna and I unpacked, and then went down and ate dinner.

After dinner, there's always something called Club, in which everyone gathers together in the Club Room and sang songs and played games and listened to a talk about God. The theme for this summer was being free from everything that binds us down: wealth, fame, sin, self-image, etc.

After that every night, there's Church Group Time, in which every church (there were three churches, one from Arkansas, one from Wisconsin, and the other one was us :D) gathered together and talked about the day. Both groups had like sixteen-eighteen year olds in it, so we were the youngest.

That first night, though, we got assigned our crews. My work crew was Ruthie, Landen, Jack (our AWESOME Open Door leader), and these three amazing Arkansas people, Josh, Hayley and Katelyn. I loved my work crew; everyone got along so well, and I made such great friends with all of them...and they were just awesome. Every day, we got to go to this thrift store called C.A.M., and then... *drum-roll* a nursing home!! I just loved it. I love elderly people-that's just the truth of it.


The next morning, we woke up at seven, and then hurried down to breakfast. After breakfast, we packed bag lunches, and then put them in our crew coolers, and then went to Devotions. I loved Devotions. I LOVE just studying the Bible, and my faith, and striving to be more like Jesus. To add onto the awesomeness, they gave us devotion books!!!!! I loved them.

The first morning, my crew (Crew 6) worked around the church. We went to this huge pile of un-wanted trash and threw it into dumpsters. Smashing glass was highly satisfying :D. I found this awesome coin set in the trash, Canadian coins. It had like eight coins in it, and a few of them weren't even circulated anymore!! The case itself was worth thirty bucks, and the pastor of the church didn't even try to guess the coins, but I would guess like maybe thirty bucks too. The pastor emailed the guy who owned it (the pastor knew for certain he didn't mean to throw that away :D) and the guy said that I could keep it so yeah *applaud* all the souvenirs I need. ^_^ We also hauled old furniture out and thwacked it to pieces with sledge hammers. Ruthie, Hayley and I just picked up chairs and smashed them down onto the pavement, demolishing them that way. :D It was so much fun. Then we smoothed ruts in the parking lot and then ate lunch. After that we went to the nursing home.

I have to say that I absolutely LOVED the nursing home. It was definitely the funnest part of my day. We had a garden party inside one day (it was raining and we couldn't have it outside) and a band came in and played awesome country music. There was this old ninety-three year old lady named Molly, and she was unbelievable. She got up in front of everybody and began dancing her heart out. I was walking past, oblivious, and she grabbed my hand and whirled me around and the next second I was dancing. It was so much fun. Then Landen came and joined me and Molly, and then Ruthie, and then Josh came, and then Jack, and there was this huge circle of dancing people...it was awesome. Then everyone kind of drifts away, until its only me again, and then Molly sits me down in a chair (not out of breath at all) and then pats my cheek, saying, "You're tired, you take a rest and catch your breath." Like I was the old person!! She's SO sweet!! :D

And then my other favorite, Betty, gave me her stuffed cat and so I was dancing in a circle with Molly and this stuffed cat that Betty was convinced was real and her baby. It was so much fun. I miss them all ready... *sniff*

After our afternoon services was over, we would go to a public pool and take showers, then come back to the church and have free hour. Jenna, Ruthie and I would hang out in the game room with everybody else and play violent games of fuse ball and ping pong. *laughs* Jenna and I both have a habit of jumping up and down in agitation during fuse ball :D

Then we would eat dinner, which was always delicious, then go off to evening activities, like five-pin bowling, going to Fort Williams, doing American Idol, and hanging out. American Idol was SO much fun. It wasn't singing, it was doing skits, so our work crew had to get together and make up a skit. They gave us a whole bunch of props, and we had to use all of them, except none of them could actually be used for what they were supposed to be used for. Like a suitcase couldn't be a suitcase. It had to be like a lollipop or something else. And the skit had to be based on what a regular day at YouthWorks would be like if the four main staff people were super heroes. Ours tied for first place with this other crew, and there was a one-liner competition where we were supposed to say things which would not be good to say at YouthWorks. The other crew totally, completely whipped us. Like completely. :D

Then there was Club, where we sang songs, played games, and listened to a talk about God and being free.

The last night, there was a foot-washing ceremony in the place of Club. The main staff leaders for YouthWorks washed the feet of Jack, Natalie, Derrick, and Steve, our Open Door leaders.
Then Natalie would wash the five girls feet, and the other three guy leaders would wash the guys feet. The churches would split off into different rooms, and sit in semi-darkness. Jack prayed for us first, and Jenna, Ruthie, and I started crying and crying during it. We completely broke down. Then we got ourselves together in about twenty minutes, but then it was foot-washing time. Natalie washed my feet and prayed for me, and of course I started crying hard again. Jenna, Ruthie, Becca, Tarra and I were all sobbing. By the end, the girls were all sitting in a circle, praying and crying on each other's shoulders.

That night was the scariest and longest emotional rollarcoaster I've ever been on. One moment I was laughing insanely, the other I was crying, next I was holding Jenna and weeping with her, then I was whispering with Ruthie, then laughing again...it felt so good though just to cry, you know?

The next morning, we woke up early, did chores, packed breakfast, and then left. It was so hard having to say goodbye to all the amazing friends I had made from Arkansas and Wisconsin. Even though they were three or four years older then me, I grew so close to them. Same with the people at the nursing home. It was SO hard to leave.

The car ride home was awesome. I mean AWESOME!!! The guys' car and the girls' car were having dance-offs. So we were stuck in incredibly sticky traffic, like coming to a stand-still, and Jack (driver of the guys' van) was dancing in his seat, but then Derrick (the driver of our van) actually opened his doors, got out on the road, and begin dancing his heart out, whooping and singing loudly. It was SO awesome. The girls had a walky-talky, and the guys had a walky-talky and we were singing rap songs to each other the whole way home. It was so much fun. :D

Canada was incredible. I can't begin to describe the wonderful experience it was for me. God blessed me so much through that trip, and I'm so grateful that I went.

Thanks, everyone, so much for praying. Your prayers helped a lot.

Love you all,

6 replies:

Jake M. said...

Cool!!! The missions trip sounds so awesome!!! I'm glad your church was successful there and you all had a great time. :D

Jake

Hannah said...

I read parts of your post. Mainly the last parts.

Sounds wonderful. I'm glad you had a great time. :D

Hannah

Josh S. said...

Yeah, it was. Amazing. Best moment(s) of my life (so far ;) lol)

***Emily*** said...

It sounds like y'all had a lot of fun! That dance off sounds awesome!


pEAcE OUt,

Emily

***Emily*** said...

PS Those skit things you were talking about are my favorite things to do in acting.

May the Word of God be a lamp unto your feet and a light unto your path.

Emily

Jenna said...

IT WAAS AMAZING (and emotional may i say)

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