After one week in Hayesville…

My first week here at Hinton has literally flown by. I have gotten to know the rest of the summer staff, and I’m definitely looking forward to working with them for the next couple of months. I have especially grown close to the two other girls – Bekah and Jill. Bekah’s a year younger than me, and Jill is a few years older than me. We’ve already shared some fun times together, and I can tell that we are going to be close friends.

It is definitely hard being away from Jake (the boyfriend). In Raleigh we lived a floor apart in the same dorm. At school we were always a text message away from seeing each other. But now there are about 280 miles separating us. That’s a four and a half hour drive. I knew that I was going to miss him, but I didn’t realize it was going to be this much!! It has only been a week and already I want him to come drive up to see me. At the same time I am realizing how amazing this summer is going to be for us, though. It sounds cheesy, but absence really does make the heart grow fonder! I can now understand more of how great Jake is, and I’ve learned that I should never take him for granted. I have never met any one quite like him. This summer is going to be a good thing for us, I know. All the time I catch glimpses of the incredible man he is growing into, and that makes me even more excited to find out where this relationship is going to lead! I know that he might roll his eyes when he reads this, but hey – I really mean it!

Over the past week we have been working on videos that we will use throughout each week to go along with the devotions. We were able to brainstorm some really great ideas. These videos are going to be hilarious, and I’m sure that the campers are going to love them! Mike is in charge of the videos, and he’s the one that edits and finalizes them. We’re almost done filming, and I can’t wait to see the final products!

Oh, Hayesville… I have forgotten how much I love this place. When I look out over the lake and see the mountains, I know that I’m looking at the works of God. Last night I met up with my family that was camping just outside the county line, and we ate dinner together. After dinner we walked and rode bikes on trails and it was so much fun. I can’t remember the last time I rode a bike! I forgot how much I love being surrounded by nature. On the drive home, the sun was setting between two mountain peaks. It was breathtaking. I hope that all of the volunteers that come to Hinton this summer get a good experience of the beauty here. There is something calming about this place. When I look around I am in awe of such a beautiful creation, and it reminds me again that I am just a small part in His plan. I hope that each person that comes here is able to take those feelings with them when they go.

Tomorrow morning is the start of a busy week of training. I don’t know exactly what is in store, but I am so excited! I know that we’re going to be out on a couple of work sites doing some construction training. Just two weeks left until I get to lead my first group at Hinton!

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