Some things in life just don’t turn out the way we envisioned…but some things do! I wouldn’t say we were the first to come up with this idea but I could say we were one of the first in our area. Cabins…rental cabins. Who wouldn’t want to rent a cabin in the woods to escape for a few precious days?
I grew up in the city; but I had my fathers heart for a country life. One of my first experiences outside of the city was church camp. New Life Ranch In Siloam Springs, Arkansas. Now, as a 3rd grader with 3 younger sisters camp sounded good to me. I was not the child to scream and cry when my parents left and I don’t remember waving goodbye. I knew no one there and I liked it that way. Some of the kids had spending money, some even got care packages and letters from home (we were only gone 5 days, give me a break). I didn’t get either and I didn’t want it. Freedom, peace and solitude in the country sounded good to me, and I was in heaven.
We were assigned a counselor, Miss Barbara Younger, and a cabin with bunk beds for 10 girls. These cabins were nothing like what campers might find today – no AC – no bathrooms – no water. And – it was July! The first thing they taught us was how to get all the granddaddy long legs out of the cabin (this is a skill I have passed along to my grandsons)! I was in heaven.
We went horseback riding, swimming in the creek, hunted arrowheads, blackberry picking, hiked mountains, made crafts, played volleyball, prayed and sang the best songs in chapel with even better ones around the campfire. I was in heaven.
I may not have known it but this was the start to my cabin dreams. And as the years passed with life lessons learned, I hung true to those ideas. What could be better than a cabin in the country away from life’s pressures? Who would have known that one day there would be such a thing as too much technology and that people would need/want a break from it?! When I married my own “jack of all trades” country boy, he also shared my dreams of a retreat enjoying God’s creation. We struggled to start paying on our first 20 acres. We cleared the land and built our first cabin by hand; it was our home. We were in heaven.