Back when Kendra Freudenburg was quiet (this lasted two days) Hawkeye declared her to be mouse-like. From then on, she was Minnie.
Minnie is always bubbling with things to share. She feels both joy and pain intensely and tends to wear her heart on her sleeve. If you tick her off, she’s going to yell at you. The guys loved to tease her because they could get a reaction every time. Minnie was always in a play-fight with someone. One of her challenges for the summer was being separated from her family and friends. The first couple weeks, it was easier to stay in contact with everyone, but as the summer went on we all had to learn to how to live without the comfort of familiar faces and voices from home. Minnie shared with my in agonizing over the draw of the internet at times when it seemed just beyond our grasp.
It impressed me that Minnie can do so well in an environment like LVR. When she’s stressed, she loves to shop at the mall and talk to her friends on the phone. Although she can be quite the people-person, she needs her fair share of alone time. And waking up early doesn’t agree with her. Despite all the potential conflicts with her lifestyle, Minnie’s pure joy and love for the campers made her right at home at camp.
Minnie demonstrated the maximum possible level of enthusiasm for the campers. Her favorites were probably the large groups of older kids who came from Kansas, but she loved each and every person who came to camp. She couldn’t wait for each group to arrive on Sunday, and literally got depressed when they left at the end of the week. When we shared highs and lows for the week in our staff meetings, Minnie always went first and had a list of highs that could have gone on forever. She has an incredible ability to learn names right away and remember them all. She made deep personal connections with more campers than I would have thought logistically possible.
My favorite memory of Minnie would have to be from the time the two of us went into the Springs together on a weekend. Despite her Garmin, we managed to get a bit lost. But we eventually found the mall, where I followed her around until she had shopped to her heart’s content. The best part was when the shopping finally ended and we ate at Buffalo Wild Wings. We wanted to find something new, but ended up just wanting to find anything at all, and there it was, like a glowing beacon of hope in the strip mall. We were really tired by that point, and the food perked us up into high spirits. By the end of dinner, we were giggling about everything like giddy little girls. It was great.