Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Countdown to Camp: Five Things Every YW Camp Leader Needs

The first time I attended YW Camp as a Leader, I was overwhelmed to say the least. Not only was I walking into the great unknown, I was doing it with more than a handful of very lively girls. Needless to say, I was eager to gather every bit of information and insight I could find to make the task easier.

Since then I've spent many happy, sad, wet, and uncomfortably warm nights in a tent. I've giggled into the wee morning hours. I've dried tears and bandaged fingers. I've seen up-dos, down-dos, upsidedown-dos, and even rag-dos. I've become quite versed in the art of Dutch Oven cooking.

... And I've learned a whole lot about planning and carrying out a successful camp for everyone involved!

So, as you start your countdown to camp (twenty-one-ish weeks for our ward), I thought I'd share the top five things I've learned that every YW Camp Leader (or really any YW leader who is attending camp) needs.

1. A sense of humor  - Hey! Don't laugh!!! ...Or do. Please. Laugh! It's important to take things seriously but if you take them too seriously, things are going to B.O.R.I.N.G. super fast. Relax. Try to have fun. Be prepared to PLAY with your YW. Sure you may feel too old, or maybe you're the uber-mature or reserved type. Hmm.. Well, all I've got to say is, "Get over it." There's no better way to earn the love and trust of the girls you serve than to get down and get dirty WITH them. Laughter is the biggest key to YW Camp success!  

2. A good support staff - I can not stress this enough: Get yourself a supportive, helpful, and available group of sisters to help you. Girls Camp is not a one-man-show. You need back up. You need other's ideas. You need friends, and allies, and probably someone who knows more about the outdoors than you do... You know, to teach you STUFF! And to teach girls STUFF. And if nothing else, to help do some of the STUFF on your ever growing list.  

3. Church Handbooks - (including the YW Theme and Personal Progress) 

Familiarize yourself with the Church Handbook, YW section, the YW Camp Manual ,and the YW Camp Leader Resources website. If you really want to go the extra mile, there's a lot to learn from the Boy Scout Handbook too.

4. A Plan - I think we've all heard the saying, "If we fail to plan, we plan to fail." Well, I'm probably the biggest groupie on this band-wagon. Plan, plan, plan... then be ready to divert from the plan.

What do you need to plan? Umm, pretty much everything! Daily activities, testimony experiences, devotionals, food for your belly, sleeping assignments, first aid, packing lists, secret-sisters, guest speakers, crafts...  Are you overwhelmed yet? Well, knock it off. It won't seem like such a big mountain once you have a plan.

5. Organization - This is my second favorite word, trumped only by PLAN. I don't care what your method for staying organized is, just make sure you have one. Personally, I'm a list maker. On paper, mind you, not on an electric devise. If your tablet or phone is your go-to, then use it (but be prepared for a plan B just in case you don't have power or service at camp).

Of course, help with making a plan, staying organized, effectively using your committee, and even keeping a positive attitude, can be found in Everything You Need to Know About Girls Camp. And for all you techy-device users, its now available for your Kindle and Nook

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Ladies' Night at Deseret Book

Ladies, what are you doing Saturday evening? 

Send your men off to Priesthood, then come join me at the Draper, Utah Deseret Book for Ladies' Night! On top of all the discounts, prizes, drawings, and refreshments, I'll be signing 
Everything You Need to Know About Girls Camp from 6:00 - 7:30 pm.  
The first 10 ladies to buy a copy will get a free gift. 
Photo: Ladies, are you looking for something fun to do while the men are at Priesthood Session of Conference?  Click here http://bit.ly/VZa3Qj to find a Deseret Book store near you and participate in Ladies’ Night! 

On Saturday, April 6, come to your local Deseret Book store and receive 20% off regularly priced items.  Also, participate in drawings, receive prizes and refreshments, and enjoy entertainment for the evening!

Check the flyer below for details, we’ll see you there!

Friday, February 22, 2013

Few callings strike fear into a woman’s heart like that of being a Girls Camp leader. Whether you’re a new camper or a seasoned leader, I'm here to help. 

Make your Girls Camp an experience to remember with Everything You Need to Know about Girls Camp. Filled with helpful tips on everything from holding your first meeting to dealing with unhappy campers, this essential guide takes the stress out of planning to make your camp a success!

Set up camp with me and follow the tour to see what other's are saying about the book: 
(If you'd like to post a review or interview on your blog, please contact Stephanie via email)

Enter to Win

As part of the Everything You Need to Know About Girls Camp blog tour, I will be giving away two great prizes. Enter HERE for your chance to WIN a "Camp Leader Survival Kit" or a signed copy of this must have leader's guide. 

Feb 12 - Serving LDS Youth
Feb 15 -A.L. Sowards, author (guest post about my views on the importance of education)
Feb 18 - Christy Dorrity
Feb 20 - Life is an Artform
Feb 21 - I am a Reader, Not a Writer
Feb 22 - Little LDS Ideas
Feb 25 - Renae's Writespot
Feb 26- Maria Hoagland, LDS Novelist
Feb 28 - Preserving the Past
March 1- Getting Your Read On
March 2 - Author Cindy C. Bennett
March 4 -The Opinionated Consumer
March 5- Mandi Tucker Slack
March 6- LDS and Lovin It
March 7- Taking It One Page at a Time
March 11- LDS Women's Book Review
- - Tristi Pinkston (guest post)
- - LDS Young Women blog

Monday, January 21, 2013

It's official

After months of waiting, the long awaited day is nearly here! Everything You Need to Know About Girls Camp  is ready to hit the market and MAKE YOUR JOB AS YW CAMP LEADER SO, SO, SO MUCH EASIER!!!

A few items of note:

  • Official release date is Feb 12, 2013, but you can pre-order your copy now at any of the purchase links listed to the side. 

  • An incredible LAUNCH PARTY is in the making!!! Don't worry, despite my desire to build a bon-fire and roast some s'mores, due to the COLD weather the event will be inside! I'm thinking s'more cupcakes are in order. 

  • I found out a couple of days ago that Everything You Need to Know About Girls Camp will be featured in Deseret Book's Mother's Day Catalog. Wheweee!! This is exciting news. In correlation with the catalog I will be doing some signings at various Deseret Book locations over the next couple of months. (I'll post dates as they are finalized).