Highlight: The dorms this year were carpeted, which GREATLY reduced the noise when all those weird get-up-at-5:00 a.m. people bounced out of bed. I dozed till 8:00 and then wearily began the process of trying to organize myself, find clean clothes, iron them, and get cleaned up for the day.
Highlight: I woke up around six, I think, because I could hear people stirring. But I didn't mind watching the trees out the window get sunnier and sunnier as the sun came up. Lying on the top bunk has its advantages.
Highlight: Taking a shower. Last year, the facility's showers were... er... primitive, let us say. This year's bathrooms were a Great Improvement. For one thing, I could put my clothes and towel on something other than the shower floor.
Highlight: NOT ironing my clothes. Why would I want to bother with that? Don't ask me why Raquelle wanted to waste her twilight years ironing clothes when she could be whooping it up with friends.
Raquelle: My twilight YEARS? What am I, some kind of old FOGEY????
Of course I ironed my clothes. You think I want to go around looking like my clothes were stored in a plastic Easter egg???
Highlight: I brought an iron. :smug:
Highlight: I brought an ironing board. :smug smug:
Highlight: Sara G made sweet remarks about my hair looking as good when I get up as when I go to bed. Sara is currently in my "Top 5" list of friends.
Heather: That's cuz of all that glue you put in your hair so it doesn't move.
Highlight: Meandering over to the dining hall and taking pictures of people who seemed to be considering waking up. Some of them actually didn't wake up till after breakfast, I think - judging from appearances anyway.
Highlight: Chatting with friends at breakfast.
*Note the difference in our highlights. I am into the essentials of life. Food comes first.
Raquelle: Neeener, neener, I'm not so shallow. PEOPLE come first. *preen*
Heather: Yer gonna be hungry.
Raquelle: Yer gonna be LONELY. And SINGLE. *snert*
Highlight: Singing songs after breakfast.
Highlight: Getting my KP lunch orders from Commander Miss Debi after breakfast. Since I was in charge of my KP team, she wanted me to know what was being planned for lunch. She and Miss Melanie had to go to the store so I would need to get things started in their absence.
Double Highlight: Lydia offering to help me with KP since I didn't yet know where everything was in the kitchen. She and I made a Highly Organized List of Things To Do while folks were singing in the dining hall.
Side note: I LOVED all the music at the TN Gathering this year!
Lowlight: Mom and Dad had no cell phone reception at the Inn, so we couldn't call and say hi.
Lowlight: Not only could we not say hi, but I couldn't instruct them to bring the VAN instead of the CAR for the dance. In the processes of unloading the Disastrous Van in the dark last night, several things were left behind, including my dance cue cards with my notes on them and my thnuggly navy thweater.
Highlight: There was a PHONE in the DINING HALL. And it had the phone number for the INN listed. COOL!
Lowlight: It was a durn pay phone. But there was nothing about how MUCH it cost. Heather and I looked it all over, up and down, and couldn't figure out how much money to put in.
Highlight: I'm no dummy. I iz kollidge edjoocated. I iz schmart. Newsflash! After half an hour of wrangling with the phone it occurred to me..............uh, I have cell phone reception. Why can't I use MY phone to the INN?
So much fer mah kollidge edjoocation.
Highlight: Calling Mom and Dad and saying hi and confirming what time the dancing would start that night and telling them I really needed my thnuggly navy thweater.
Highlight: The weather was delightful. Jason S. pointedly informed me that I had to play softball this year. I declined firmly, on the grounds that I've had way too much surgery done on my mouth and teeth to be interested in any game that involves rapidly hurtling projectiles. I'm dead serious. I could probably top anyone here with dental horror stories, including jaw surgery, gum surgery and reshaping multiple times, a dental implant, and wisdom teeth out, plus five years of braces. Ten years of torture to be jeopardized in a softball game? Jason was clearly unconvinced. Jason probably was born with straight teeth, what does he know?????
He tried to help me change my mind....some of the guys were tossing a ball around on the patio and he threw it to me. I dramatically shrieked and ducked and made a great show of not catching the ball and throwing it back badly. He didn't bug me anymore after that. *snicker*
Lowlight: Most people took off to go do sports. Yawn. Remember what I just said about rapidly hurtling projectiles? I stayed back at the dining hall.
Heather: I'm not afraid of rapidly hurtling projectiles. I just rapidly hurtle them back.
Raquelle: Yeah, but you ain't been through what I been through. *looks martyrish*
Highlight: Chatting with Jill.
Highlight: Riding with Jill up to the softball field.
Highlight: Chatting with a bunch of people including, but not limited to, Jill, Mrs. Ferrar, and Michaela.
Highlight: Riding back to the lodge in the back of somebody's car with Jason, Allison, and Helena.
Lowlight: Being videoed by Jason while feeling carsick. I think I sounded particularly dimwitted in that video. Ah well, such things happen when you can't get away from the paparrazi.
Highlight: Several other people weren't interested in sports right then and we had a rip-roaring good game of Mexican Train. That's a domino game, for those of you unfortunates who are in ignorance.
I believe some card games went on also.
Highlight: Plugging our iPods, Zunes and cheapy-off-brand-MP3 players (like mine) into the big speaker and listening to the High Kings CD and other fun stuff. Sonia let me listen to some sound clips of the stuff she had planned for the dancing. Me and Sonia had fun plotting. Sonia did most of the work though. :D
Lowlight: I was on KP duty that afternoon. With my BOSSY BIG SISTER as KP leader! OH NOES!!!!!!!!!!
Highlight: It turned out to be a blast. It was hard work to tie Heather up and gag her and throw her in a cage in the pantry, but it worked pretty well and kept her out of everyone's hair.
Heather: Wait, wait, WAIT! We interrupt this program with the Official Version from the KP Group Leader: ME.
Highlight: Hollering at my KP team on the softball field and telling them it was time to go back.
Lowlight: Greg (on my team) stalking up to me and announcing, "I quit." Bah, first day on the job and he's already flaking out.
(Side note: He had a good reason - he was basically having to cook all his own meals already.)
Highlight: Swaggering into the kitchen and laying out The Plan with Lydia. "Let's see, we'll cut up the Eye of Newt Soup over here and the boil the bat's wings over there..."
Lowlight: Jason coolly informing me that he didn't have to do anything I told him.
Highlight: Getting out a broom and watching Jason capitulate.
Highlight: I HAVE AN AWESOME KP TEAM. So there.
Highlight: Daniel P. and I were on sandwich-making duty and made OUR tray faster than the OTHER group, who were cutting their sandwiches into picturesque precision triangles.
Lowlight: The picturesque precision triangle sandwiches disappeared first at lunchtime. Maybe there's something in asthetics after all...............
Highlight: Being on the food prep team meant I was NOT on the food clean-up team.
Lowlight: TRYING to get people sitting in ROWS at the table to SIGN the CARD for JASON (who is deploying soon) and PASS IT to the NEXT PERSON. Not that hard. In a line? Send it down the line. Easy peasy. But nooooooooo. Homeschoolers just don't do lines. It was an utterly foreign concept and docked routinely one person at a time. I had to leap up and pound the table like a drill sergeant and made a scene every thirty seconds. Er, something like that. It was pretty pathetic.
Highlight: FINALLY getting the card signed.
Lowlight: Almost everyone ran off to play more sports.
Highlight: Half a dozen of us stayed behind and had a Fabulously Fun Time in the kitchen making cookies and brownies. The mixer was an ancient rusty dinosaur that we were all reluctant to use, not having a strong desire to add extra iron to our diets.
Highlight: In a most fortuitous set of circumstances, Nate F. stayed behind to help with the cookie making. I don't know if he was bribed, badgered, threatened or volunteered out of the goodness of his heart, but any rate, we put him to work! Beating up multiple sticks of butter, six cups of oats, three cups of flour, and eleven cups of caffeine by hand is no joke. Thanks Nate!
Highlight: We had a royally raucous time in the kitchen!
Lowlight: The kitchen was under-equipped in the form of oven mitts to remove giant hot trays of cookies.
Highlight: We palmed that job off on Nate too.
In the absence of timers, we took turns poking our noses into the oven and saying, "Nope, not done yet," every five minutes. And then we got bored with THAT and started clowning around.
And then we got bored with THAT and went out to the dining hall to teach Joy Gardner some basics of ECD.
By the way, I got a kick out of Alaina, who was helping make cookies. Her T-shirt was one of the funniest I've seen. On the front it said, "Let's eat Grandma" vs. "Let's eat, Grandma." On the back it warned solemnly, "Punctuation saves lives." Haw haw!
Highlight: I took a NAP. It was lovely.
Highlight: Dashing off to the dorms to put together the gift bags for the planners of the TN Gathering.
Lowlight: Jason S. conned me into ironing his dress shirt for tonight AND tomorrow. For free, no less. Ain't gonna happen next year. Bah.
Highlight: People had contributed a lot of great stuff for the gift bags! Thanks for pitching in, y'all!
Highlight: Mom and Dad showed up. WITH the van. WITH my dance cards. WITH my thnuggly navy thweater. AND with my pwecious widdle sewing basket that I had forgotten I wanted to bring in. Are they awesome or what?
Highlight: Hangin' out with my friends and my parintz. Item: My parents are cool.
Lowlight: Nervously gobbling macaroni and keeping an eye on the line, waiting for JUST the critical moment when the line was done but the first-comers hadn't left yet.
Highlight: Getting up and embarrassing Jason S. and presenting him with a card and chocolate and well-wishes from the gang for his deployment.
Highlight: Embarrassing the planners by giving them the gift bags and a standing O!
Lowlight: My macaroni was cold when I sat back down. *moment of silence*
Highlight: Daddy set up the sound system and headset mic for us. Look out world, here comes the music!!!
Highlight: Dressing for the evening dance in our ridiculously wacky poodle skirt outfits.
Lowlight: Trying to FIT in the infinitesimal bunk aisle with my poodle skirt on and piles of my JUNK strewn everywhere.
Highlight: Leaving the mess behind!
Highlight: Getting to meet Jo the Merry! She wasn't at the Gathering, but she stopped by to meet us and say hi. Now I have a real live face to put with the person I chat with on HSA!
Highlight: Dance calling! I LOVE bossing the world around, haw haw!
Lowlight: I forgot to have people switch numbers and walk through "Barbarini's Tambourine" the OTHER direction before trying the dance. Epic train wreck. Sorry guys. It's a great dance, maybe I'll call it better next year.
Highlight: Learning lots of new dances from Josh and Sonia!
Highlight: The zany collection of goofy costumes! Some of us looked, er, pretty funny!
Funny moment: Dancing the "Dashing White Sergeant" with two of the youngest Ferrar girls. The very littlest one, Lydia, (age 8?) was AGHAST when we came up against a threesome that had one girl and two guys, instead of two girls and one guy.
"There is SUPPOSED TO BE A GUY IN THE MIDDLE!" she exclaimed, appalled.
"I know, but there were extra guys, so some of the sets ended up this way," I explained.
She didn't buy it. What a load of malarky. "ONE OF THE GUYS SHOULD SWITCH TO THE MIDDLE," she announced flatly.
"I can see your logic," I nodded somberly. "But I think we'll just have to go with it this time."
Well, okay. Realizing that I too was just humoring a bunch of clueless delusionals, she pursed her lips and condescended to allow this ridiculous bending of the rules. Just this once. Clearly some people were out to lunch.
Highlight: Dancing Levi Jackson's Rag! That is my FAVORITE dance! Love it, love it!!!!
Highlight: A muscular guy (sorry, I can't remember which one) helpfully carried our whoppin' speaker inside since Dad and Mom had already departed for the night.
Lowlight: It was time to go to bed.
Highlight: Flopping into bed within five minutes. Did I mention the advantages of a SLEEPING BAG over sheets and blankets?
Highlight: A nice cool shower, since dancing for four hours in muggy weather can make you sticky.
Lowlight: Michaela thought she found a tick on her. Everyone was full of helpful suggestions, including, but not limited to, vaseline, toothpaste, hot matches, tweezers, radiation, electrocution, solitary confinement, or jumping up and down in hysterics. "Of course," I offered, "it might just be a mole you never noticed before." As the veteran of both real tick bites (1) and imaginary tick bites (4,172) I felt very experienced in THAT area. Turned out I was right--she decided it was just a mole. *smug*
Highlight: Michaela has some great friends. We told her if it was a real tick bite and she keeled over and died, we'd eat chocolate in her honor. Sweet, ain't we?
Highlight! Bed! Ahhh! Stay tuned for Tuesday.............