S: Village 2011 Over the Rainbow - Bridging the Gaps
FC: Village 2011 Sweden
1: Over the Rainbow-Bridging the Gaps Village 2011 Malmo, Sweden
2: Our Delegation
4: Leaving from McGhee-Tyson Airport | After months of preparation and anticipation, it was finally time to go.
5: July 6, 2011
6: Finally...we see land!
7: Host-siblings Tom Lindell and Mira Blomstersjo greet us at the train station | Wonderful host families were waiting for us in Malmo
8: Hej! The USA delegation arrived safely in Sweden this morning! Our flight left Atlanta later than planned, but we enjoyed a smooth flight and encountered many people interested in what we were doing. One woman on the plane asked Jamie what kinds of things we would be doing at camp, and he replied, "fun and world peace." Sounds about right! Your children slept on and off on the flight, and they were bright-eyed and bushy-tailed when we landed in Copenhagen this morning. On the train ride across the water into Sweden, we met the host-mother of some Canadian delegates, which was helpful in finding where we should get off. As soon as we got off the train, two Swedish children ran to Marty, Shay, Jamie, and Luke with a sign and Swedish flags. Mira and Tom's parents followed suit. Your children seemed really excited to meet Swedish children their age (I could tell because they almost went off to their homestays without saying goodbye to me ;)). The kids and their parents speak English, so I think Marty, Shay, Jamie, and Luke will have a comfortable weekend.
9: I am writing from my short homestay with a young couple before I go to the village in an hour. One of my hosts, Gustav, has done every CISV program there is. And his parents met at a CISV seminar camp! I will keep you posted as our village progresses. Thank you for sharing your children with me this month. They are an enthusiastic and impressive group :) Hope all is well at home! Erin
12: First Home Stay | We stayed in Domsten with our host family, and the next day we went on a trip to Helsingborg. We had a great time including a visit to IKEA, a boat ride, sightseeing, games, shopping, a cold swim at the beach :), and lots of good food. We had a great welcome to Sweden!
13: Arriving at Village
14: The Staff
15: Maria Holmquist Jacob Mollstam Linnea Gard Stefanie Nygren
17: Leaders and staff as Rainbow Gods
18: Here in this village... | You will see
19: Flag Time Breakfast Cleaning Groups Activity One Lunch Siesta Activity Two Free Time/ JC Shop Dinner Delegation Time Activity Three Fika Flag Time Lullabies Hug Time Lights Out
20: Children living happily
21: Different race and different land, here we come to understand
22: One another's point of view | Learning through the things we do
23: How alike | Am I to you
24: From the pages of the camp diary
25: Every day was filled with lots of activities.
30: Tim | Michiel | Floor | Marty | Marlene | Joseph | Sibel | Jan Henry | Charlotte | Jamie | Shay | Hugo | Marissa | Zach | Luke | Sydney | Canada | USA | Germany | Holland
31: Romina | Eleanor | Tornike | Anano | Nini | Emilio | Dominique | Emiliano | Eloise | George | Hedvig | Martin | Oliver | Leri | Georgia | Mexico | UK | Norway | Macauley | Oda
32: Elin | John | Corinne | David | Fernanda | Gabriel | Sofia | Yahisa ( Mexico) | Oscar (Guatemala) | Jonas (Sweden) | Sweden | Brazil | Pedro | Anna (Finland) | Giulio (Italy) | Junior Counselors | Elsa (Sweden) | Corrine | Fernanda
33: Leaders | David (UK) | Adina (Canada) | Mijn (Holland) | Aza (Georgia) | Anna (Sweden) | Erin (US) | Britt (Norway) | Katrin (Germany) | Teresa (Brazil) | Sofi (Mexico)
34: What was happening?
36: USA National Day | Teaching the Virginia Reel and Love a Rainy Night
37: Elvis, Ayoka, Davy Crockett, and Dolly Parton | On Wednesday, we had our National Morning and Night. In the morning, Ayoka, Davy Crockett, Elvis, and Dolly Parton talked about who they were and presented their fabulous movie. The costumes were a hit, and people were very impressed with the movie (thanks, Graham!). Afterwards, we taught everyone both the Virginia Reel and Love a Rainy Night. They picked up the dance moves quickly and were asking to dance the dances again! Since Wednesday was the first warm and sunny day we'd had in a while, the leaders, JCs, and staff planned activities at the beach, which is just a half hour walk from the school. There, we swam and participated in a series of trust games. For dinner, we served our American peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, which were a huge success. (The original plan was to serve them for lunch, but we had a big lunch so that we could bring "portable" dinners to the beach, since we'd be there for so long.) The kids raved about the sandwiches and asked me to put out the leftover peanut butter and jelly at breakfast every morning since then!
38: In the evening, we built a fire and introduced our National Night snack: s'mores! Jamie and Luke led some kids to the surrounding wooded area to collect branches for roasting marshmallows, while I started the fire. Jamie, Luke, Shay, and Marty explained the snack and taught everyone how to roast a marshmallow. People had so much fun! They rushed for seconds, thirds, fourths, and even fifths, disappointed that they had to wait in line for more s'more supplies! Everything about that evening was perfect. We sat around the fire, eating and laughing, while the sun began to set on the ocean. On the walk back to the school, kids chatted excitedly about how "the American National Night was the BEST National Night ever!" That's always good for the soul :) Jamie, Luke, Shay, and Marty were very proud! As was I :) On Thursday morning, kids were still talking about the bonfire. It was cold and rainy that day, and it just happened to be our shopping day in the quaint old town of Lund.
40: Germany National Night
42: Great Britain National Night
44: Mexico National Night
46: Holland National Night
48: Sweden National Night
50: Brazil National Night
52: Georgia National Night
54: Norway National Night
56: Canada National Night
58: Open Day
59: Many local CISV families came to Open Day, including your kids' first host families. They were so excited to see Jamie, Luke, Marty, and Shay and brought them gifts. They sat with me at the table and, with tears in their eyes, reiterated to me how special your children are and how much they will miss them. At the end of Open Day, the delegations that wanted to perform something could do it for all the guests. We were the last of seven "acts." We first demonstrated the Virginia Reel and then taught it to anyone who wanted to learn.
60: Visiting the Viking Village | Village Diary July 14th Today was awesome! After breakfast we went to a Viking Village by bus. It was raining cats and dogs, so we all got really wet. In the Viking village we learned a lot about the history of the Nordic countries. A very nice Viking taught us how the Vikings used their weapons and how they punished their criminals. We also were allowed to visit every house in the village, to use all the weapons and try them. Back in our village we had an activity where we talked about the excursion and what we learned about Vikings, history, etc. We created little plays in our delegation about the excursion and about our country’s history. In the last activity we all made our own special mailboxes. They are all amazing! We placed them on the first floor near to all the different flags. We can’t wait to get letters! Lullabies were great! We sang I’m Yours, Hey Jude, Leaving on a Jet Plane, and the Goodnight Song. Love you all! Your German Delegation!
62: Trip to the Zoo
64: Pranks and Such
66: New Friends
67: Over the Rainbow | Bridging the Gaps
71: All my bags are packed and I'm ready to go... | I'm leaving on a jet plane...
72: Earlier this week, reporters from one of Sweden's largest newspapers came to the camp to interview some of the kids. They visited our village on a unique day: Backwards Day. As you'll read in the article, the kids were woken up with goodnight hugs (our typical nightly ritual) and lullabies, before heading to the dining hall at 8:45 AM for a lasagna dinner. We spent that day doing our schedule backwards. A bit chaotic but fun nonetheless. The newspaper article is beautiful. It is mentioned on the first page, and the article and picture span the spread of the second and third pages. Our very own Marty is pictured and quoted!
73: ERIN THANK YOU! | Dear Erin, This grand adventure needed the leadership of a uniquely talented and caring individual, and you far exceeded our expectations. Your enthusiasm, your leadership skills, your confidence, your openness, your ability to sense concern and meet any challenge that arose--and your exceptional gift for developing relationships and caring for each child individually was so impressive. You took such care to reach out to each child and family and really get to know us. And it seemed to come very naturally for you. You gave us assurance that you were very capable, not only to be responsible for our children’s safety, but to be their “parent” for the month guiding them through any struggles and helping us through ours, as parents, too. What courage you have! You were so thorough in your planning to make sure that we were all ready for the trip in every way. In a word...you were fabulous! Thank you!
74: Dear Shay, Jamie, Luke, and Marty, I will forever treasure the memories we made in July 2011 at our Village in Sweden. You four taught me that the world is going to be OK when it is in your hands. I so enjoyed watching your growth as a “family” during the months leading up to our trip. It was beautiful to see how that contributed to your support for one another when we were at Village. I was impressed with you from the very beginning with your cultural sensitivity, your awareness of yourselves and others, your ability to debate issues you believe in, and, of course, your senses of humor I told you this often, but I will say it again. The other leaders and staff recognized this, too, and told me constantly how impressed they were with you. They admired your curiosity, leadership, and inclusion of all the delegates. Some of the most difficult times provided us with learning opportunities: maintaining friendships with challenging delegates, understanding how people view Americans during the Stereotype Game, experiencing poverty or wealth for a day during Rich and Poor Day, recognizing the joy of living in the moment at Village instead of feeling guilty about not being at home. There were also really wonderful times. My fondest memories include witnessing the humanity in each of you as you experienced the House of Feelings, listening to you supportively dialogue during Delegation Time, and observing your silliness as you rolled on the floor, teased each other, or hid from me. As for my personal enjoyment, I got a kick out of your faces when you learned that there wasn’t actually a basement at our Village, despite what the staff had told you :)
75: Shay, I cherish the conversations you and I had, though I especially appreciate what you brought to our Delegation Times. I smile with pride as I look back on your bravery in singing in front of everyone at the Talent Show, in addition to the selflessness you exhibited when befriending some of the shyest delegates at Village. I have such respect for your maturity and perspective. Jamie, your creativity will always astound me, whether it is in the form of a homemade purse or a high-tech mailbox. I chuckle at the memories of your camp-wide prank against the JCs and the thought of you mopping the toilet :) Mostly, though, I deeply admire your openness and your questions. Luke, it was a joy witnessing you blossom over our month in Sweden. Remembering how leaders, staff, and delegates (including our own) recognized you as an honest, respectable, and thoughtful young man warms my heart. When I picture you at Village, I see you head-banging on stage, playing the guitar at lullabies, and yelling, “This is awesome!” while being chased in Streets and Avenues. Marty, in my memories of Village, I hear your characteristic chuckle, which we heard often at Delegation Time Your integrity is a quality I regard highly, especially as it enabled you to entrust me with honest concerns or struggles at Village. I look back on that month and see you discussing current events and contemplating new ideas. Thank you, my Fab Four, for this life-changing adventure. Though I won’t get to hug you goodnight after lullabies, practice dancing the Virginia Reel, or wake up the world with “Back in Black,” I will forever carry you with me on my life’s next adventures. Peace, USA. And thank y’all. Love, Erin (Cookie Monster/Noodles/Bubba)
76: Around the Village
78: Village 2011 | The places you saw....the friends you made.... the lessons you learned. We hope this album will help you remember this incredible experience. We are very proud of you all.
79: October 2011 Reunion