Friday, August 13, 2010

Korean Culture Camp

The long awaited week has finally arrived and the kids are too excited to sleep. The daily cry "do we have Korean camp today?!" is answered with a resounding YES! and the loud cheering Korea Camp Korea camp.

The camp is a week long affair with the kids learning all about their culture and partaking in Korean food everyday.This year Billy was old enough to go to camp and Tom spent the whole week in the kitchen.

The camp separates the kids into age groups and then each age group gets a colored t-shirt that they have to wear each day and then the parents have to wash each night. There were around 315 campers, 100 teen helpers and 100 adult volunteers. The camp is for kindergarten age until 6Th grade, then what is really cool all the 7Th graders and older get to volunteer as jr counselors and teachers. It is great for the younger kids to see the older kids still involved and active.

The Van Meters car pooled with us and the Buckley boys and Shin Bee met us at camp. The kids have a ball learning tae kwon do, how to speak Korean and Jimmy's favorite class - self esteem. The lunch room is crazy with all these Korean foods and kids all eating plate full of kimchi, mandu, chap jae, etc. The kids eat like it is there last meal and the amount of food and rice that is consumed is unbelievable. For instance during the week we went through 20 - 40 pound bags of rice, 50 gallons of soy sauce and sesame oil and I can not even calculate the amount of sugar, small wonder the kids love it.

The week ends with a presentation/family day. This is perhaps to date one of the most pain full events to sit through. Each child has his or her moment in the sun and showcases something they learned during camp. It starts sometime around 9:30 on Saturday morning and ends roughly the day the camps opens the following year.

The week ended for us with two separate dinner parties. Leona, Bob and Shin Bee, along with Sandy, came over on Friday night and it was great fun to catch up with them. They have relocated to Connecticut and it is the first time we have seen then since the move last spring. Saturday night was another blast with the Van Meter's and the Buckley's. It is great to see the kids continuing their friendship over the years (remember, we were all in Korea together when we picked up Jimmy, Hayden and Joey) and spending time with each other, it is hard to believe that 8 years ago we all met in Korea and here we are still celebrating the gift of adoption together, to cool.

The kids would bring home different cultural experiences each day and they were speaking Korean to their Korean friends. Korea camp is a close second in the kids favorite things to do, Christmas is still in first place but the jolly Old Elf better keep an eye out.