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Monday, July 12, 2004

If you really want to start feeling your age, just volunteer to help with the youth at church. Don't get me wrong--I am really enjoying it a good deal, but it just makes me feel old!

Last night was an evening of get-to-know-you, group-building games (what we used to refer to as Theta-games at the UTK Wesley Foundation. (Theta was the president of the Wesley Foundation Student Cabinet my first year at UTK and seemed to have an endless supply of group-building, get-to-know you games for us all to participate in. Anyone who was there will shudder as I say--Oranges and PantyHose)). I have to admit I was overjoyed to be an adult when I got to serve as a check-point/proctor for the person with paralysis game. Basically, a group of five youth all get together and four of them must carry the fifth person, who is "paralyzed." At different check-points around the church, the person changes, up to three people in the game. I was stationed near the playground, across the street from some houses, where some guys out on their porch and sitting by their car took great amusement in watching this game unfold.

So, what was the point of the this game, you ask? Well, it actually tied into a devotion that Holley gave at the end about the four men who bring the paralyzed man to Jesus. I have to give Holley a lot of credit as this really worked well. I don't think I ever learned as much from one of Theta's game--well, except that oranges and pantyhouse is a really silly game and one that should be avoided at all costs!

Other parts of the evening included a game where we all sat in a circle and passed a volleyball, a basketball, etc around the room without using your hands. Ah, the dexterity required for this--not only to pass the ball around but to avoid being beaned in the head or other areas that would not be good to have a large round object flying into them at high speeds. Then we also had a game where you made up a sign for yourself--as in something you liked to do or identified you--and then said your name and did the sign. Then, after you'd gone around the cirlce, someone would say their name and sign and call our your name and sign...and you'd say yours and then call out someone elses. Now, anyone who knows me, knows that names are something I struggle with at times. And I could remember a lot of what people did to identify themselves, but not names. Luckily being relatively new, I wasn't called on that often. And my sign--well, I debated between the remote control clicking and swimming. I went with swimming because it was a bit more distinctive in my mind and I figured one of the youth might go with lounging and watching TV as well. (Oh yeah, I got to go first in the game...did I mention that part?) Then, we had another game where you sit between two people you don't know--not terribly hard for me--and you find out three bits of info about them. I saw between Katie, who like to skateboard, play drums and plays soccer and Kendall, who is a lifeguard, has been swimming competively since she was seven and has been in the hospital 14 times for overnight stays. (I didn't have time to investigate that one further). My three things were--lived in Hawaii when little, love to eat at Sonic and swim laps every day. The lived in Hawaii thing elicited the usual "woah, cool" response.

So, it was a good evening. I am really enjoying working with the youth. But, as I said before, if you want to feel old and completely out of it with what's cool, well, just hang out with 'em. And I though I had a good amount of energy these days--but it was nothing compared to them.

Speaking of having energy, Gracelyn and Davis were back from their vacation this weekend. Davis has finally figured out how to crawl and pull himself up. So now he can scoot around the house with the best of them and it won't be long before he starts to walk. Gracelyn is less than thrilled that he can crawl now and can get into her toys! Sharing is not high on her list of priorities--be it toys, grandparents, Uncle Michael, etc. She also like to have an organization of things. Yesterday she took animal crackers for each person and made sure you got the specific one she selected to give to you. Also, Saturday, she stunned me yet again with her being perceptive. (In so many ways, she reminds me of Inn of the Last Home's Brainy Boy...he is always doing something that amazes me at just how perceptive and smart he is! Gracelyn had dumped our her water toys and brought me up a plastic boat that is a ferry boat.

"Where are the cars for the boat?" she asked me. Now, this boat has NEVER had cars on it. Nor have I said to her that this is the boat with cars on it. I quizzed other family and they didn't remember telling her that...but one of us could have said in once and not remember. But she did. Either that or she figured it out all by herself. Either way, I am impressed, as always, at how sharp she is. Of course, I'm a totally biased uncle--in both the case of BB And Gracleyn--but, wow!


posted by Michael Hickerson at 7/12/2004 09:13:00 AM | |
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