Girls’ Camp


camp-in-a-minute from Michelle Lehnardt on Vimeo.

Last week, when I told a friend I was headed to girls’ camp, she replied, “That’s one calling I will NOT do!”

Truth is, nobody called me. I BEGGED and pleaded to go. I volunteered for the planning committee, the food committee… happily, they found a spot for me as the photographer/videographer.

And I’ll tell you what– I had the posh job at camp. No months of planning, no massive trips to Costco (though I did try to help where I could). I just packed my bag and enjoyed wandering around camp, visiting every cabin, chatting with every girl and leader.

But mostly spending time with this cute little person:


Isn’t she adorable? And aren’t the camp t-shirts fantastic? Please note her fabulous paracord belt– custom made by Xander (with a whistle on the buckle for safety).

Acting as an onlooker during the week was a truly humbling experience. Witnessing the love and work poured into the camp by so many leaders, watching the girls befriend and help each other, enjoying the wildflowers and the sunrises and meals prepared by an incredible committee (the hardest working women at camp), was an absolute pleasure.

I love to plan, to contribute, to problem-solve; but it was so good for me just to OBSERVE– to witness the talents of so many others (and they certainly didn’t need me).

One of the highlights of the week was a project where they handed out 3″ squares to each girl and asked them to enlarge and replicate the pattern on a 5″ square of watercolor paper. None of the girls knew what they were creating (many of them guessed it was a tree since that was our camp theme).


All the squares came together forming a stunning portrait of Christ. None of the squares were perfect, everyone interpreted the colors a bit differently, but together we created something truly beautiful.

The rest of the week was spent decorating, crafting, canoeing, ziplining, hiking, dancing in the rain, singing and bearing testimony of Christ. The girls participated in yoga, devotionals, water fights and so many late-night campfire chats.

Everywhere I turned, I witnessed so much love. Leaders sacrificing time, girls extending kindness to each other. The love of God in every tree and flower and face.


I came home feeling humbled and grateful; determined to complain less and compliment more. To follow Mother Teresa’s advice:
“Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier.”

Maybe they’ll make the photographer gig a regular thing? I know I’ll be begging to go again.


I posted my camp-in-a-minute video at the top, but the truly dedicated can watch this 10 minute video.

REACH! Heber Valley Girls’ Camp 2017 EMC North from Michelle Lehnardt on Vimeo.




  1. Montserrat

    June 27, 2017

    I saw the shortened video on instagram and was going to ask about the painting of Christ. I’m so glad you explained it! I’ve got a new calling that will require me to organize Girls’ Camp next year and I so want to do this with our Young Women! Do you have contact info for who was in charge of that project? I’d love to learn more.


      June 28, 2017

      I’m happy to give you the contact info! Melissa will be thrilled. It wasn’t easy to pull off, but turned out beautifully.

  2. Michelle

    June 29, 2017

    That picture of Christ took my breath away.
    And, oh, how I love Heber Valley. Truly a temple on a hill. Have you heard the story about how it came to be?

  3. Jodie E

    June 12, 2018

    Hello! Our Ward is super hopeful about trying the Christ Painting collage. Can I get more info on how you prepared this activity? Thank You!

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