When you hang out with teenagers

You overhear a number of different things, but one thing remains the same: You never have any idea what they will say. They’re kind of like toddlers in that way…

Case in point, overheard at a recent youth group meeting:

“My mom cut our hair but we had to stop when she got my ear once.”

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Self-esteem boosters with Sarah

It’s been a while since we’ve done one of these, but I also just had the privilege of spending a week with her during our youth trip to Montreat.

And in all of the ways, the trip did not disappoint.

Of note, in a regular minivan packed with 10 youth and two adults, there’s a lot of conversations happening and you can only hear pieces sometimes.

Someone: “Let’s have a competition to see…” (I forget what they said)

Sarah: “Let’s have a competition to see who has the biggest butt. Laura would win though..”

Self-esteem boosters with Sarah

This week in youth group our topic for discussion was one of the questions the youth had submitted last semester. The question was, “What does God think is beautiful?”

So, naturally, the conversation started with us asking the kids what they thought was beautiful and we made a list. The boys surprisingly mentioned scenery, except for one mention of Megan Fox.

Then it was Sarah’s turn.

Me: “Sarah, what do you think is beautiful?”
Her: “You!”
Me: “No, seriously.”
Her: “You! Add it to the list.”

That girl…

Self-esteem boosters with Sarah

She’s been quiet with the compliments (backhanded and otherwise) for a while, but never fear, today she made up for it.

When we were getting ready to get in cars and head over to do a service project, she and three other middle school girls claimed my car for the trip over. However…

“Laura’s car always smells like a cat for some reason..”

I don’t even know…

Self-esteem boosters with Sarah

Be honest, you thought I’d have run out of these already, didn’t you?

Ah, then you don’t know Sarah. They just keep on comin’.

The most recent was on Christmas Eve, when she got a little confused about who I was talking about and assumed it was a guy I was seeing.

When I corrected her assumption?

“You could have a boyfriend, you know. You’re really darn attractive.”

Self-esteem boosters with Sarah

Remember how I told you about how sometimes my buddy Sarah (an eighth-grader in the youth group I work with) gives me compliments?

Sometimes they make me laugh and sometimes they’re sweet. And sometimes its both.

Recently, while giving me a hug: “Laura, you’re so huggable.”
Me: “Aw, thanks, so are you!”
Her: “And my arms can fit all the way around you, it’s perfect.”
Me: “Whew. Good thing.”

…And you will hereafter refer to me as such

You might have heard that I work with teenagers at my church..

If you haven’t, I suggest reading one or all of these before going further:

Chaperoning at the Happiest Place on Earth
Wherein I am either the worst chaperone or the best one
Joining the club
Self-esteem boosters with Sarah

So yeah. I’m one of five adults that helps lead our youth group, and with that title comes power and as Uncle Ben Parker says, “With great power comes great responsibility.”

(Or Stan Lee says it – I took a picture of him from five feet away once, look!)

IMG_5532

Anyway, I’m getting off topic. Sorry. It’s the holidays, I’m delirious.

Most recently, one of the events we did with the youth was the 30-Hour Famine, a fundraising event benefiting World Vision’s hunger relief efforts and as part of it we play a bunch of games, have a lock-in and don’t eat for 30 hours straight.

I took charge of this particular event, at least as far as getting the info and game stuff we needed ordered.

Well. Apparently if you have stuff delivered to a church now it automatically makes you a Rev. Because this is what was on the box.

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I think that means I can perform weddings now, so… add that to the resume.

Self-esteem boosters with Sarah

Welcome to a new feature, here on the ol’ blog, in which you will hear the frequent “compliments” I get from one of the teenagers in the youth group I work with – an eighth-grade girl named Sarah.

She’s been on a roll lately. She’s unfiltered, which I can definitely appreciate because, well, people are amazed at things I say most of the time.

She’ll give me what she calls “compliments.” I wouldn’t go as far to call them that. But I appreciate every single one.

Most recently, I got this one after I started walking up the ramp to the youth room in front of her.

Sarah: “Laura, you’ve got a flat butt.”
Me: “I KNOW.”
Sarah: “No, but like, I mean that in a good way. It’s nice.”