Sunday, May 26, 2013


What a surprise to wake up early on Sunday morning, put up the window shades and the world outside is white, and the snow is falling!  It was beautiful, but so discouraging to see our cold weather go on and on. 

Even our bird houses had a few inches of snow on top.  I had to clean the snow off the hummingbird feeders so they could get their food.
The miracle about the snow . . .just the day before this world of white was the Spring Open House, where Young Women leaders, and families that have reservations for this year can come and visit the camp.  It was cold and raining and blowing, prior to the time the Open House would start.  All of us said a prayer that the weather would be tempered.  So much work had been done to make the camp in perfect order for these guests.  Not even 20 minutes after the prayers were said, a circle of blue sky and sunshine appeared over the camp. 
But the question remained, will they come with the weather having been so bad.  Steve and I were assigned to the Smith Pavillion to help answer questions as the guests would come.  Just before the start time of 1:00pm I looked out the pavillion window.  I couldn't believe it . . .cars were lined up clear down the road approaching the Welcome Center. 
How could we have ever doubted it!  There were over 400 cars that entered into the camp that day, filled with eager, future campers.  This is truely the Lord's camp.  It has been built, and they will come, and they did.
The snow of the next morning was almost a miracle.  There could have been snow for the Open House, but no, He held it off until that special day was past, and then sent us a blanket of white to give us the moisture we so badly need.

Friday, May 17, 2013


As part of our training, we had the special opportunity to try out the Challenge Courses.  Challenge Course #5 is the one that has "the big swing".  This is very different than the other high courses.  You get into a harness and then are pulled high into the air and then released to fly through the air.  Steve was very brave!  He was pulled to the top and then he did fly. 
Go Grandpa!


                The men had to put the yellow buoys around the Lake.  Steve was in charge of this project.  I think the three of them had a lot of fun, just going around the lake in their rubber raft.  The buoys are anchored  on to big cinder blocks with rope and them dropped into the Lake.
Elder Brown, Elder Turner, Elder Richards


                Other chores were, putting new signs on all the missionary chairs; training to be up in the tower and direct rescue efforts when there is a tip over; painting the bridge over the creek by the Lake; cleaning the restrooms; picking up trash all around the pavilion and the Lake; and practicing the welcome and orientations we give to the campers.

                 Whew, we have been busy.  The campers will be arriving on Monday, May 20th.  I think we are ready.  Let them come.
We're Ready!!


               What do we do these couple of weeks after we arrive on the  Mountain.    One might imagine that we sleep in, ride ATV’s, have parties, etc.  Nope!  We train, work, clean, paint, move boats, put away new life vests.  Yep, we are getting ready for those campers who will soon be here.

                All the canoes and paddle boats had to be cleaned, moved, and put into the water.  This was fun as we ladies got to paddle the boats over to the dock.  Before we could move them, the men had to put new “bushings”, whatever those are, in each paddle boat.  They then had to go and get the rubber raft, inflate it, and make certain it still floats and still runs.  The next boat they had to  get  was the big pontoon boat.  It had to be launched into the lake and all the missionaries had to learn to drive it.

                We had to train the new Sisters how to load and unload campers from the paddle boats.  There is quite a technique, using boat hooks, to  make certain no one ends up in the lake instead of the boat.  Next we had to train them in the use of our suction system that is used to clean the water out of the paddle boats after they are used or when it rains. 
 I had made certain that I told the new missionaries that we never get wet.  I cautioned them carefully about positioning their feet and hang on to the poles on the dock, to be certain not to be pulled into the water.  Well . . .I was in one of the paddle boats, cleaning it.  I pulled up one of the seats, and stepped back to put the seat down, only to find  that I had completely misjudged my position in the boat.  Instead of stepping into another area of the boat, I stepped back and found myself in the lake, wet up to my waist.  In the process, my glasses fell into the lake, but sweet Sister Smith saw them down in the water, and using a grabber , and laying on her tummy was able to retrieve them for me.  She got big hugs for that.

                A whole huge shipment of new life vests came that all had to be unpackaged and put away.  All the old vests had to be removed.  This was quite the project, but it looks so splendid to have so many new vests.  This year all the missionaries will be wearing beautiful blue vests.  Fancy!!!

                See, Getting Ready #2 for the rest of the story!


Wednesday, May 15, 2013


One of the big things here at the Girls' Camp, is being able to do the Challenge Courses.  These are Class Rope Courses, consisting of a high course (climb a tall pole--cross some sort of line, log, or bridge to another high pole, be attached to a zip line and zoom down to the ground).  There are 5 of these courses at the camp, each a little different.  Each course has a high course along with 6 low course activities. 
Last year I just could not bring myself to even try any of these courses.  They just seemed above anything I could ever do.
Well, this year, one of my bucket list items, was to do one of the courses.  Today was our Challenge Course training.  All of us had the opportunity to participate.  At course #4, the leaders encouraged us to do whatever we felt we could accomplish, even if it was only putting on the harness, and then taking as many steps up the pole as we wanted.  Humm, I figured I could do that.  I had nothing to lose.
So into the harness I went.  That felt OK.  It became my turn.  I figured I could at least climb a little ways up the pole, and then I would see if I wanted to go further.  So, up I started.  Not too bad.  The steps were large metal brackets and all seemed well.  I took a big breath and decided to continue up.  I was doing just fine and then I came to a point where you had to change feet.  It took me a few minutes to figure this out, but with great encouragement, I took a little hop and my feet actually went where they were supposed to.  So, I made the decision to continue up.

I got to the top (this is the tallest of all the courses) and I had to leave the nice sturdy pole and step out onto a thin metal cable.  I was attached to a belay line and I had been told if I slipped they would not let me fall, but that was the biggest step in my life.  I just wanted to take that pole with me.  Then I stepped out . . .
After wobbling and sliding my feet and feeling so very insecure, I made my way across the line (25 feet above the ground) until I reached the opposite pole where a wonderful Sister reached out her hand and pulled me in.  I just grabbed that pole with both hands.

Then it was time to go on the zip line.  I could not look.  I just closed my eyes, counted to 3, stepped off, and away I sailed.  It was so fun!  I did it!  I can't believe that I had the courage to do this.  Bucket list, you have one less item in there.

Thursday, May 9, 2013


 May  3, 2013 
     The phone call came while we were down at the Lake with our team; "Can you be at church at 9:30 on Sunday?  Brother Wright would like to talk to you and your husband."  Well this phone call only means one thing, a call to serve in a Church calling is going to be extended.  We both looked at each other and thought, "probably  district leaders".  So that would be just fine.  . . a great calling for the both of us.
     We arrived a few minutes early and sat and chatted with some other couples that were being called to positions.  Then it was our turn, into the room we went.  There sat the 4 Brothers who take care of all the Church part of camp as well as taking care of the actual operation of the camp; Brothers Wright, Case, Riddle, and Edwards.  We sat down and then Brother Wright spoke.. . " Sister Brown we  would like to extend to you the calling to be the Compassionate Service leader in the Relief Society".  I was astonished!  This is not what I had expected!  I was thrilled to accept the calling, but, I have never done this before and felt totally humbled by it.  Whoa!  Can I do this?  Steve was asked if he could support me in this calling and he answered, yes!
     After our meetings I wa set apart by  the Priesthood and the call was official.  I listened carefully as Brother Case said the words of my blessing.  I was told to pray and ask for the Lord's help, and that my families would be blessed for my service.  The tears were just flowing down my cheeks.

I pray that the Lord will have compassion on me as I serve the wonderful sisters on the mountain.

Sunday, May 5, 2013


  May 1, 2013

       What do all these have in common, one may ask.  Today was such a special day!  It is hard to explain the feelings of walking into the assembly  room at the Salt Lake Temple and it is full of all the missionaries from the Heber Valley Camp, all dressed in white.  We could not help but wonder if this is what Heaven will be like--to enter and be surrounded by friends and family.  All the missionaries gathered to attend the temple together and to gain that strength and peace that comes from being there.

     We could not help but remember that 7 years ago we had been married here at the Salt Lake Temple.  This year it was cold, but the flowers were out in all their beauty.  There is something about the Spring gardens at the temple that I have never seen equalled anywhere.  There are tulips of every size and description.

  Not only being at the temple with all those missionaries was a great experience, but perhaps even more special, to be there to celebrate our very special wedding anniversary.

   After the temple session we all went to the Joseph Smith building for a very wonderful, delicious lunch.

Friday, May 3, 2013


 April 29, 2013
       I have never seen Legacy Lake frozen. There it was! Ice covered, white, and serene. It was such a different feeling to not see the ripple and shine of the water.  The whole camp has a different atmosphere all dressed in white.

      Today was our first official Legacy Lake Team meeting.  What do you do when your team is too big to squish into the little maintenance room.  You look around.  Find a sunny spot, and you gather. 

Wednesday, May 1, 2013


April 25, 2013

                Our MTC is done!  What a great time!  What a wonderful group of missionaries!  On Friday afternoon, after all the training was done, everyone gathered in the chapel.  No one hardly dared to breathe.  The assignments were going to be made.  One would think we were waiting for the academy awards!  With everyone on the edge of their seats, the names and assignments were read.  Browns—Legacy Lake.  I was very pleased and know that this will be a super year!  There will be nine of us on the Lake, two more than last year.
                As we gathered with our team, everyone was so excited, except for one sister.  She was so sad.  She very sadly said, “ Of all the assignments, this is the one I did not want.  I hate and am so afraid of water”.  I so will keep her in my prayers.  This will be so hard for her.
                Assignments made, a quick trip to Dairy Keen to celebrate, and then the notice that we would move first thing in the morning.  We were up early, took everything off the cupboards and tables, unhooked from sewer and water, hooked up to the truck, and we were off.  It was such a great feeling to be headed up to the mountain. 

                We were greeted by sunny, blue skies, and about 2-3 feet of snow on the ground.  Lots of work had taken place as our spot was cleared of snow and ready for us to pull in.  We have a great place.  We are on the edge and our big back window look into the forest.  Beautiful.   Here is the view from our windows.
It feels so good to be in our home place for the next 6 months.  The mission is becoming more and more real.

Training--Let the Fun Begin!

Mini-MTC April 24th

                The second day of our training, and the fun begins.  We rotate to sessions to learn of all the different assignments on the Mountain.  There is a job to suit all personalities and talents.  We learned of being on Safety, a Camp Host, and about The Lake.
Elder & Sister Hadley-Team Leaders-Safety
              After lunch, the weather was warm and outdoors we went, to learn of the “lo course” games, and how to “process” and make even the simplest game have meaning  to the girls.  Here we are—“carrying toxic waste”—unraveling a huge rope without letting go of our hands—guiding each other blind folded through a mine field—building the tallest, free standing structure in 10 minutes (our team won), and so much more.  A wonderful afternoon of team work and fun.


                We ended up the day with a quick trip to “the Aggie Creamery” for an ice cream run.  Mine was rocky road, Steve’s was orange sherbet .  A fun end to a fun day.