Yes, 100. 104 to be exact. For the next 5 days Ty and I are in mountains with our junior highers. Excuse me, "middle schoolers". (I always get scolded for that.)
Anyways, we started registration at 8:00 yesterday morning and have been going going going non-stop. I wanted to think of a creative way to share the next 5 days with you so I've logged the 5 absolute necessities for traveling with "middle schoolers".
Here we go.
A no-brainer. If your body is not filled with some form of caffeine, you are signing your own death sentence. I like to go with the venti caramel macchiato with 2 extra shots.
2. Mega Phone/Loud Voice
This is a must for traveling in groups of 3 or more. With girls you'll have less of a loudness/yelling problem and more of a giggling/perpetual convo problem. With boys you'll have the loudness/yelling issue...and sometimes giggling. :)
When you're NOT using the megaphone, you'll be using these bad boys. They will help you keep your sanity. If you have noise canceling ones that's a bonus.
However, though my headphones get plenty of use when with my lovely middle school girls, I also like to listen in and engage in the convos they are having. 99.9% of the time they'll be about boys (newsflash right?) and I like to think that I can help shape their view of the hormonal opposite sex. Sometimes.
They LOVE riddles and I love giving them riddle that takes the entire car ride or bus trip ( or week) to figure out.
5. A Heart for Teens
This is essential because you will burn out faster than you can say, "Please pick up your trash". If you've followed me for any length of time you know being a youth pastors wife wasn't on my Bucket List. [More on that story here.] But after a year of working with these kids and watching them grow and change and learn and thrive and desire more of God, my heart has shifted. I was scared and way intimidated by them. But some of them have become like brothers and sisters to me. I care about them. I care about what happens to them. I care about the decisions they make and what friends they choose.
And it's the care that keeps me there, every day. Youth ministry is very different from Worship Ministry. But that's another post, for another day :)
Hope this gave you a giggle, and if you work with youth, what are your "survival tricks"?