Summer Holidays - Week Five

Tuesday 18 September 2018

For the week of shinty camp I'm counting Week Five as starting on the Saturday and not the Sunday or Monday, just so that I keep all the shinty camp things together in the same post.

So the campers arrived in time for dinner on the Friday night and then camp got off and running properly on the Saturday. Most of the children knew each other as they had been at camp the previous year, so everyone settled in really quickly as there wasn't really any of the start of camp getting to know each other stuff to do. They also knew the routines and where everything was in the hostel.

Every morning I pinned up the day's menu, which was always illustrated by James.

I have to mention here how good Fraser was all week. He loved when the campers were around as they were mostly all so keen to play with him and keep him entertained. But the campers were often away playing shinty and then it was just me and him left in the hostel. I would have things to get on with in the kitchen and so he would sit at the table closest to the kitchen and entertain himself with different things.

From where he was sitting in the picture above, I was right by him here in the kitchen.

I would love to have one of these dishwashers in my kitchen at home!

Timing when everything was ready was made much easier with the hot server in the kitchen. This is what we had for Sunday lunch - roast chicken pieces, veggies and roast potatoes.

On the Sunday afternoon I made it out of the kitchen and went along with everyone for a lovely walk at Braes beach. It was a beautiful walk, and the mountains in Skye are just spectacular, but as a Lewis girl I have to say that a Skye beach isn't quite up to the standard of a Lewis one :-) 

As well as helping me in the kitchen, James' girlfriend was also the official camp photographer. I love this action one she took of Ally.

I wasn't in the kitchen all day every day. There were times when I could sit back and relax a bit. Fraser enjoyed playing the Wii when the campers were all at training.

This was one of the super easy puddings we had one night. Dirt cups with worms. Thanks Pinterest!

One of the campers taught Fraser how to play draughts.

As we did last year, we spent our wedding anniversary at camp. This year we celebrated 20 years married, and I've now reached the stage where I have been married for half of my life time!

It was a far from glamorous way to spend a wedding anniversary. The day was wet and miserable and the campers were out canoeing.

A couple of the girls didn't want to go camping and so we took them to a coffee shop in the next village along rather than stand in the rain watching the others.

Dinner was chicken pie followed by apple pie.

The campers and other leaders knew it was our wedding anniversary and so they set a table for us both, covered in clean white towels since there was no table cloths, and with a pot plant for decoration.

When dinner was over we got some lovely gifts, flowers and a card signed by everyone.

So while it certainly wasn't the most glamorous or romantic of wedding anniversaries, it was certainly not a dull one and was lovely in it's own way.

At shinty camp we don't have a tuck shop with sweeties, but instead have the 'Shinty Shop' where kids can spend their pocket money on balls, grip tape, bags, jumpers and even sticks.

You wouldn't believe how popular grip tape is!

Here is David modelling one of the hoodies available.

Fraser back on the wii with some campers.

A spot of training on the astroturf.

My end of July cross stitch progress.

At the end of the week the local church again provided a bbq for us. We held it in the courtyard of the hostel.

Andy had bought these beautiful slate medals as prizes.

The week flew by and soon we were on the road home.

Cooking at camp is hard work but is something I've really enjoyed doing. A dinner time probably takes at least four hours, from the moment you start preparing the meal, serve it all and then finish the last of the clear up afterwards. Lunch would take about an hour and a half to two hours from start to finish and then breakfast would be similar. As well as those 8 hours of work on the day there is also all the planning that happens before hand. Writing out the menus, working out quantities, sticking to the budget of £4.50 a day per person (which is actually really generous and leaves plenty room for treats), and ordering all the food. It really helps having a good team who will step in to help without you having to ask them, as has happened the last couple of years. It was also an amazing help that the ladies in the local church provided so much baking for us and so all the home baking needed for suppers and treats was all done for me.

After a week when I was so focused on organising, preparing and cooking for so many each day I wanted nothing more on the way home than to stop off an indulge in a Big Mac!