Saturday, 9 August 2014

Wrap up Week/Pre-Camp


  As I begin this post I am once again sitting at the kitchen table at Isaiah 40, eating lunch while 30 Senior Youth Camp (SYC) staff members are eating in the dining room.

  This past week has been a whirlwind of Day Camps wind up and SYC prep.

-      - Monday morning the Team from New Brunswick returned after a sleepless overnight bus ride from Moncton and Carmen spent that day, and night with me as she was flying back to the UK on Tuesday.

-      - Tuesday was the annual Team Leaders’ Evaluation Meeting. The meeting starts at 3pm so all morning I was busy putting final touches to dinner (for 9) and getting chairs etc. set up for the meeting. At noon several Team Members came by to take Carmen out for a last little excursion. They could only stay nearby as she was on crutches, having torn a ligament in her foot during the previous week!! 
     Everyone arrived right on time at 3pm. So that Carmen could have that first half hour to give her report before Angela whisked her off to the airport. The rest of us continued meeting and hearing the stories of each Team’s adventures, and then dinner was served at 6pm.after which most of the Leaders departed while a group of committee members stayed on for a final 2014 debrief meeting.

-     - Wednesday, as well as trying (manfully!) to keep up with general office work, I met with Sarah and went over to the supply room so she could sort the SYC first aid boxes and I could dash to the CO-OP to buy ingredients for the Prayer and Praise Service Refreshments.
We also had a pleasant lunch together, benefitting from leftover chicken salad and cheesecake from the previous night’s dinner!

-    - Thursday I prepared a few last minute menu items for the PreCamp, went and paid the vast grocery bill at the CO-OP, and arrived at Isaiah 40 in time to meet a small group of Team Members who came early to set up the dining room for PreCamp and the Hall for the Service; then as more members arrived, to practice the Liturgical Dance and hold a short Worship Band rehearsal. Meanwhile I made a huge quantity of Brimfield popcorn, sliced mounds of cucumber, cut up cheese chunks and filled every jug I could find with ice water and citrus slices. The Service was lovely, as it always is and Jessica had put together a super Slideshow with photos from every Team. Last year we tried to get the Slideshow linked to this Blog (without success!!) so I am very much hoping we can manage the technological feat in 2014!!! The Team Members presented the 2014 Day Camps Liturgical Dance, and we sang our "Follow the Leader" Theme Song for the last time, very moving.

-       Yesterday was a blur of emails, phone calls and texts, as last minute PreCamp and SYC plans came together and by 330pm I was on my way over here to begin set up for the first meal – The Taco Salad Bar, with Ginger Molasses Cookies and Cantaloupe for dessert.

-       And so here I am on Saturday afternoon, lunch just finishing up and the last snack soon to be served. In a short while the staff will pile into assorted vehicles with a wild and woolly collection of paraphernalia and Wil and I will wave them good-bye before heading home to put the house back together after last night’s “Huyer Invasion”.

Apart from garden maintenance and mowing the lawns there has been little time for anything else this week. But that is okay! Now the trick will be to get all the Team Evaluation Forms written, the choreography drawn for the SYC Liturgical Dance, some prayer letters painted and written and a couple of tiny gifts completed, all before Randy picks me up at 9am Monday morning for our “Day at Senior Youth Camp” experience!!!!

The Salad we had at Tuesday’s meeting was a bit different and really well received, so I thought I would share that today…

                                              California Salad

500grams boneless chicken thighs

250 grams spaghettini

1 oak leaf lettuce, washed and torn into pieces    

2 cups sprouts

1 fresh peach, chopped

2 spring onions, shredded

¾ cup olive oil

3Tbsps. balsamic vinegar

1 tsp. Dijon mustard

½ tsp. each salt and pepper

1 cup coarsely chopped cilantro leaves

2 ¼ cups toasted cashews

Open out the chicken thighs flat and place in a shallow glass dish with 1 Tbsp. of the olive oil, several Tbsps. of the cilantro and the chopped garlic scape. Marinate, refrigerated and covered, for at least 2 hours.

Grill the chicken either on a barbecue or stovetop grill, approx. 10mins. each side. Cool and shred.

Meanwhile cook the pasta al dente, drain well, toss with 1 Tbsp. olive oil and refrigerate until cool.

In a food processor, purée the chopped peach, balsamic vinegar, salt & pepper, Dijon and olive oil, until smooth.

When ready to serve, place the torn lettuce and sprouts in a large serving bowl, layer with the pasta, chicken and cashews, toss gently with the dressing, sprinkle with the cilantro. Serves 4-6.

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