Cake in face

I love when camp goes home with the campers. For example, parents might say that their child continue to make a bed or help with the dishes for a period of time (sadly, these changes are rarely permanent). Other times, campers will talk about taking “Reasonable Risks” and becoming more courageous. Or perhaps they will describe examples of “Reaching Out” to others and becoming kinder. Susie Ma’am and I get especially excited when these traditions follow our campers home.

But sometimes the camp traditions that come home are the silly ones.

Today, I will share an example.

At camp, we love to celebrate birthdays. One of the highpoints of the birthday celebration is singing “Happy Birthday” moments before having the camper place his or her face into the cake.

I cannot say whether this enhances the flavor of the cake, but I do know that it creates broad smiles and happy campers.

Earlier this week, I got an email from a parent of a June camper who just celebrated her birthday in Colorado. He said that his daughter insisted on honoring the camp tradition, so he sent this picture.

Riley cake in face

Before I go, I should add a cautionary warning concerning ice cream cakes. If you are going to serve an ice cream cake, please make sure that your child knows this fact. Ten years ago, an enthusiastic 12 year old was celebrating his November birthday in Midland. His loving mother chose an ice cream cake. Her son, jealous of his camp cabinmates who enjoyed camp birthdays, longed to plunge his face into a cake on his big day.

To his shock, the cake lacked the sponginess he expected. He got a very small nosebleed. Seeing his mother’s shock, he quickly recovered, cleaned up the cake and thanked his mother for the surprise cake.

So do not be surprised if your camper approaches the next birthday cake hoping to do more than just eat.

Steve Sir