Philmont Scout Camp

Summer is winding down and I realized I never fully recapped the highlight of our summer: Philmont Scout Camp in Cimmaron, New Mexico.  (Warning: lots of pictures.)

Due to several scenic stops along the way, it took us 20 hours to get there.  We were never so excited to get out of a car.

Chad had to wear his Scout uniform all week:

We stayed in A-frame tents on platforms for 7 days.  Since there were only 2 people per tent, we had to split up.  Dad, Locke and I shared a tent.  Crew and Croft were together and Elle was with her friend, Melissa.  My heart smiled at one point when I heard Elle say to Melissa, “Let’s go clean our tent so it looks nice.”

Chad and I can’t say the same for out tent keeping skills. (This pic was taken the last day.  I had given up by this point.)

We went with other members of the Stake Presidency and got to know them even better:

We met many wonderful, dedicated, and kind people.

While dad was in training all day, I got to drop the kids off at their different groups.  Elle was a “Roper”. Crew was a “Buckaroo” and Croft and Locke were in the “Small Fry” class.  Each group had an itinerary full of fun activities.

One activity was handicrafts. Croft made an apron, Crew made an airplane and Elle made a birdhouse.

They all got to go on lots of different hikes.  Crew hiked to the only T Rex footprint known in North America.    They all got real used to using our camel backs:

The kids also made homemade icecream, toured the Villa, went on pony rides and played lawn games.  But since I wasn’t with them, I didn’t get pics.  I was off having my own fun.

I was in the “Silverados” which was the wives club. Sometime I just hung out in my tent and relaxed, but other times I ventured out. I went on a Villa Tour, took a few hikes too, attended classes and I also did a ropes course.  I’m still not sure what life lesson I was supposed to learn from the ropes course, but it was fun:

At night the family would get back together for dinner and then we had a variety of fun programs.

The first night was a family banner parade and a big group FHE.  We sang lots of fun songs and heard great stories.  Our favorite song was probably “Herbie, the Family Pet.”  Here is our family banner:

One night was a children’s costume parade.  The kids all made their own costumes and then marched in a parade with Sister Esplin:

After the parade, we had a Western Night BBQ.  We ate good food:

The girls got their faces painted:

while Crew learned a new lawn game:

The closing night everyone participated in skits with their group.  Croft kicked off the night and lead the whole group in The Pledge of Allegiance. (I got her hat off before she started.)

Crew was a firecracker:

Elle helped spell “United States”:

And I sang some song about “ravioli by the scoop” in a towel headpiece:

During free time, Locke took naps:

Croft played her harmonica, made friends with tent neighbors, and watched magic tricks:

And Crew and Elle carved sticks endlessly in the shade of a tree with their new pocket knives:

A few family members (kill joys) gave us flack for letting Crew buy a pocket knife.  But, I wouldn’t trade that memory of Elle and Crew cutting sticks together for anything.  (And besides, what’s a childhood without a set of stitches?)

The week culminated with Chad getting his certificates and awards.  I had to include this (one and only) photo of the awards ceremony so we could all have a good laugh at the irony of life…of course the only picture that didn’t turn out…

So that’s our Philmont experience, blogged for posterity’s sake.

A lot of times my husband’s responsibilities at church feel like a burden.  That negative feeling probably peaks at around 11:30 am on Sunday when I am wrestling four little kids by myself in our Sacrament Meeting.

But Philmont helped changed that.   I felt so lucky to be there surrounded by great, dedicated people. I realized I wasn’t alone. There are many wives that share their husbands with thousands of people and spend Sundays(and Wednesdays and Thursdays and…) alone.  And what other calling would give my children these fun experiences?

My heart was softened a bit that week, and I had an overwhelming feeling at Philmont that my husband’s church assignment is a blessing and not a burden.

(I might just have to pull up this post next time I’m having a pity party.)

Other Philmont posts:

Patriotic Etiquette

That Family

Juxtapose

Quick to Complain

3 Comments
  1. Looks like a lot of fun and some good experiences. It brought back some memories, I think I was 12 when we went. Your stake is lucky to have your family as a great example!

  2. My favorite: the towel headpiece! And I believe the whole Erickson family would be categorized as the “kill joys”. 🙂

  3. I stumbled upon your delightful blog! I have only read a few posts and I’m not even sure where you live? Our family moved to the far reaches of the Canadian West Coast. I can relate to how you felt…. “I realized I wasn’t alone. There are many wives that share their husbands with thousands of people and spend Sundays(and Wednesdays and Thursdays and…) alone”… We are not alone.. there are many many other moms who lovingly support their hubbies in their callings by managing the family in the absence of their service. I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything else. Hugs from Canada!