Concrete Jungle – Part 5

Hello everybody!
I don’t know about you, but I am seriously exhausted! These past few days have been nothing short of incredible, and my body is reacting to every bit of it.
The past two days at camp have been really great. The girls that we are working with range from 11-13 years old; and even though they have all been very sweet and fun to work with, they have definitely reminded me why I don’t miss that time in my life… middle school was ROUGH. And these girls have a whole lot more to worry about than I ever did at that age.
I am blessed.
But we have done our very best to not to let crazy middleschoolness get in the way of our fun! We’ve been doing lots and lots of crafting. Which you know I just LOVE!

These girls have been such a sweet addition to my life. Honestly, all of the people on this trip have been nothing but pleasant to be around. Our team (or “dream team” as we like to call ourselves!) has worked and played really hard this week. It has been so much fun getting to know each of them better each year, and I know that is a time in my life I will always cherish.
I mean COME ON. If that face isn’t an automatic pick-me-up, then there is something seriously wrong with you.

Do you know where Lara and I went again yesterday?
Yup, the New York Public Library has been graced with our weird-loud-quirky presence TWICE in one week. We just might be the coolest teenagers I know.
But really though, it’s beautiful. And we had a good reason to go back: immediately after leaving the library on Tuesday, we realized that the children’s wing at the library (which had already closed for the day) is the home of the original stuffed animals that inspired Winnie the Pooh! WHAT?!

Needless to say, we fit in another trip. And this time Grammy got to go! Wahoo!
She had really wanted to see the library, and the Gutenberg Bible. Oh wait, did I mention that in my last post? The New York Public Library is home to the only Gutenberg Bible (there’s only 48 left) that isn’t a part of a private collection. And let me tell you, it is b-e-a-u-t-i-f-u-l. That Bible holds so much history in it, and it honestly is a time stamp for an entire technology shift in western culture. Sorry I’m geeking out hardcore.

Did I also mention that it’s really pretty? Because it’s also just really pretty.
Kinda like the rest of the Library:

Moving on.
Yesterday was our last day at camp, which is always hard. These kids have so much more to deal with in their daily lives than I could ever wrap my head around, and it is always a struggle for me to walk away from them. Many of them have come back each year, but I always feel like a week is never really enough to show them how much they are loved.

Aren’t they just beautiful?
I know that God has a plan for each and every one of their lives, so I just work to stay content with my placement and know that the seeds we plant each summer are making a difference.
I encourage you all to join me in continued prayer and support of these kids and the area of Astoria. It is a neighborhood that is in great need of love.

Well guys, is my final post from the Big Apple. I feel like this trip has been very different from the past two years.
Obviously I am no seasoned New Yorker, but I do feel as though I’ve seen a different side of the city on this trip, the real side of this city. There is so much heartbreak and anger on these streets, yet somehow I still love it the same. With the realization of imperfection there has been a sort of birth of purpose, if that makes sense. I felt much more driven on this trip, which (at least I think) is encouragement that this is what God wants me to be doing for now.
My thoughts are obviously a bit scattered – I am tired after all – but I do know for certain that God has been revealing all sorts of incredible things to me lately, and there is nothing but more of that to come. He is so good!

I’m peacin’ out now folks. I hope you all have a very lovely weekend (:
Anna Michelle



  • Grammy says:

    I love, love, love the pix of our girls. I actually have been able to picture them in my mind sitting on the tarp and remember their names as I pray for them but it is SOOOOOO much better seeing their smiling faces in your pix. Thank you so very much for caring for, sharing your talents with and loving on these special young ladies.
    Love you

  • Grammy says:

    Oh, by the way! I was glad to hear that you were exhausted also. It was a fantastic week but I am just now feeling somewhat rested.

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