Going to Camp

Going to Camp

This week we are going to Camp Abrazo. It’s my most favorite thing. (Well, almost. I like birthday parties at Chuck E. Cheese and ice cream sundaes and Halloween, too. But Camp Abrazo is right up there.)

When we go to Camp Abrazo, we drive a long way to get there. Dad does the driving because Mom packs so much we always get a late start. Mom tells Dad not to drive so fast. But Dad says he wants to get there as soon as the longhorn does. (I think he really just wants the free beer.)

See, there’s a longhorn at Camp the first day. You could say he’s like the welcoming committee. His name is Oreo cuz he’s black with white spots. (Or maybe it’s white with black spots?) He’s got huge horns, and he drools a lot. You can get up on his back and take family pictures. (One year we even used that picture for our Christmas card.)

My friends at Camp, it seems like I’ve known them forever. I only see them once a year, at the ranch, but it’s kind of like we’re cousins or something. ‘Cuz we all got adopted at the same agency, and we all have the same kind of stories. going-to-CampAnd we’ve all been coming to Camp Abrazo since we were little babies. (Well, most of us, at least.)

At Camp there are lots of people. But they’re all Abrazo people. There’s birthmoms and birthdads. And moms and dads. And lots of kids. And even some babies.

Even though it’s called Camp Abrazo, we don’t stay in tents like at other camps. At Camp Abrazo, we stay in little houses that they call cabins. Most of them are made of rock or stone, and they are real homey. They don’t have kitchens, though. The ranch has people to do the cooking for us, and boy, is their food good! You get to eat as much as you want. There’s even a cowboy breakfast, where you ride the horses out to a special part of the ranch and the cowboys make breakfast for you over a campfire. It’s a-maaaazing!!!

What do we do at Camp? Well, us kids, we play, of course. There’s lots to do! There’s a huge swimming pool, and that water feels so good when it’s hot out. Mostly the dads get in and play with us, sometimes our moms, but usually they sit around the pool and talk (probably about us, right?) We all get matching shirts. And we take a big picture with everybody, just like family.

There’s horses, like I mentioned, and there’s peacocks that roam around. There’s a petting corral with rabbits and goats and a donkey, even. There’s a creek with a rope swing. There’s horseshoes and shuffleboard and a huge life-size chess set.

We get to ride school buses to a nearby rodeo, and the Abrazo kids even get to join in. We don’t do bull riding, of course, but we do get to do mutton-bustin’, and sometimes a calf scramble. At the ranch, Cowgirl Kell has games for us, and prizes, even. There’s a trick roper who comes and does tricks for us. There’s pony rides for the little kids. There’s a steak fry at the ghost town, and fireworks. Plus there’s a candlelight ceremony, where even the kids get to hold candles. Afterwards there’s a family dance, but kids dance better than grownups, if you ask me.

Then before you know it, it’s Sunday already. Sunday at Camp is both happy and sad. It’s happy because we get to go to the air-conditioned place for the Golden Binkies ceremony. We sing songs with Elizabeth, she started Abrazo. Then the AbrazoChicks give out the little trophies, and we find out who won the prizes that raise money that helps the Abrazo ladies help others like angels.

But it’s sad, too, because right after lunch, it’s time to go home. I hug my friends from Camp and I tell them goodbye. I help my parents pack the car. I look for my favorite horse, on the way out. My little brother usually falls asleep even before we get to the ranch’s gate.

I’m glad my family goes to Camp Abrazo each year. It’s super fun. (Even though it’s super hot.)

It’s where my family is just like everyone else’s. And it’s where everyone knows everyone, like one big family.

See why I said going to Camp is my most favoritest thing, and why I can’t get wait to get there?

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