Wow! Summer sure is flying by! Installations are done, and now we wait in store for what the next term holds for our Bethels.

I was only able to make it to two Installations from switching jobs, but man were they memorable! Of course, I was at Bethel #2’s Installation, but I was so surprised that Mrs. Hasegawa and Miss Meghan decided to visit as well! HQ Evangeline and I are splitting this term as HQ between us, and because we both have close ties to Hawaii, that’s what we made our theme! Our favours were Hawaiian themed mugs with a bunch goodies inside, like sunglasses and hula girls for your car. We decided to present our Installing team with a traditional Hawaiian Lei ceremony, whereas you give a lei to someone, you blow a piece of your “soul” into it, and as you lay it around their neck, you say “A piece of me is with you”, as a welcoming into our Bethel. After the Installation while everyone was chatting and eating cake, Evangeline and I sung a duet of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” by Israel Kamakawiwo’ole while Vangie played the ukulele.

I was also able to be a part of Bethel #36’s Installation as their Installing Chaplain/Bible Bearer. HQ Cassandra’s theme was Kindness, with her motto being “Everything is like my favourite style of egg, sunny side up!” 🍳. We were also pleasantly surprised with the presence of a representative from their local Food Bank to show their appreciation for all the money that Bethel #36 had raised for them.

On June 30, I woke up at 4:30am to get ready for our Grand Team adventure to Wenatchee for Washington Grand Session. Ms.Alexander and I picked up Mrs. Shultz from her son’s home, and we were on our way to the border…and then to Walmart! After stocking up on snacks and breakfast items (such as snickers yogurt), we headed straight to the hotel and arrived around 5:30pm. First thing at Washington Grand Sessions is the Miss Washington Job’s Daughter Pageant. The theme was “Beauty and the Beast”, and all 13 contestants had a little mirror as their favour. Miss Washington 2015/2016 Miki Kent and PMIJD Kay Ekeya did a wonderful job hosting the Pageant. All of the contestants represented their Bethels with dignity and grace, but Avery Sadler had the honour of being crowned as the new Miss.

Opening Ceremonies started bright and early at 9:00am the next day. After Opening Ceremonies, there were the girl’s competitions, so we all decided to go shopping at some of the local craft stores (except Meghan, who had a nap instead). We had dinner at Olive Garden, it was my first time eating there, and surprisingly enough, I hated the breadsticks. Sorry, not sorry 😂. Friday night was the Washington Grand Bethel meeting and draw. After their regular business had been conducted, the room suddenly hushed as the draw began. Valerie Thomas was drawn as the new GBHQ. I am so excited to be sharing this opportunity with her as we bring our jurisdictions together on International Day. Saturday was one of the best days for me. Meghan and I were allowed to attend the Daughters’ Workshops. We sat in on a very well directed workshop on Dress Code and how to dress to make your body feel comfortable. We then headed to a flower-crown making workshop. Mine turned out alright, Miss Meghan however shed a bit of blood and gave up half way through 😂. Our lovely roommate Evelyn was across the room busy making friendship buttons for Meghan and I. They had what looked like a “W” standing for Washington, but she explained to us that we can put the buttons upside-down so it’s a “M” for Meghan 💕. After a lovely Daughters Luncheon, we went out for more shopping adventures! I got 3 new pairs of shoes! We then headed to Red Robin for dinner, where we found the Washington Demolay finishing up their meal. Almost everyone at our table ended up ordering a root beer float, and with free refills everyone had a root beer float for each hand!

After dinner, we headed back to the hotel for the GGC and GB Installations. Both Installations were beautiful, especially with the new GG’s daughter who sang so beautifully after the Installation. Immediately following the Installation was the dance. Washington really knows how to throw a party, because half way through Meghan and I were sweating so much that we had to change out of our formals. We learned many line-dances, like the wobble, soulja boy, cotton-eyed joe, and Washington’s version of the time warp (if you have never experienced their version of the time warp, you really need to, trust me).

Sunday it was time to head home, but we made sure to stop in Leavenworth for brunch and more shopping! We had so much fun in their hat store, as well as in an almost entirely Disney themed store. Now, my trip home was a little bit more strenuous than everyone else’s, I think. Ms. Alexander, Mrs. Shultz and I were gung ho on getting to the border at 5:00. We got there at 6:00. We were told the wait would be 20 minutes. It was an hour. Heading into Canada, we ran into the Delta wildfires, of course. We dropped off Mrs.Shultz at her son’s at 7:30, and made a wicked dash for the 8:00 ferry. We got to the terminal at 8:02, and asked if there was any room if we could get on. Of course, the cut off is 5 minutes BEFORE sailing time so we had to wait for the 9:00. We were sitting in the Tsawwassen shopping centre, and all of a sudden there’s an announcement saying “Attention all passengers on the 9:00 ferry from Tsawwassen to Swartz bay, the ferry will be delayed by 30 minutes in order to allow as many vehicles and passengers on board as possible”. Great. After getting off the ferry at 11:00, we arrived at Ms. Alexander’s house, only to find my car has a flat tire. After the wonderful services of BCAA and Totem Towing, I got home at 1:30am. Island struggles.

All in all, it was a wonderful trip, so interesting to see how different jurisdictions run their sessions. The friendships that were made are here to last, and I can’t wait to see all of the Washington Jobies at International Day. I hope everyone’s summer is going well, that we are out in our communities promoting our order, making friendships, and lasting memories.
~ GBHQ Meghan