Cabin Fever and Our Recreation Fund

Our annual Pancake Breakfast raises support for our Recreation Fund. Have you ever wondered why we need a Recreation Fund, or how that money is used? Two of our staff share about one way the fund was recently put to good use.

Violeta Douce, Home Parent Mom in The Hubbell Home, explains, “We still had some money left in our home’s recreation fund, so when we were feeling VERY cooped up with our family of ten due to the cold weather, I started looking for ideas. We wanted to get out of the house, do something out of the ordinary, active and memorable.”

Our Therapist Rachel Howell and husband Al had given their boys an upcoming trip to Great Wolf Lodge in Kansas City as a Christmas present. When Rachel learned that Violeta was looking for options and considering Great Wolf Lodge, she invited their home to come at the same time so they could enjoy it together.

Violeta says, “It seemed like the perfect medicine for our cabin fever! We broke the news at dinner a week before the trip and showed online videos of the water park and the hotel. None of them had been there before, so they could not fathom that we were really going there. They just didn’t seem excited, and that made me sad. I had to remind myself that our kids’ lives have been marked by disappointment and empty promises, so this was probably just a normal way for them to protect themselves from the pain of being disappointed.

“However, the kids got really excited when we walked into the resort! They loved seeing our rooms, exploring the arcade and other places around the resort, and going in the water park. Each one of them slowly found the places where they felt the most comfortable and had the most fun. Some of them loved going down the slides, while others just spent time in the big pool playing basketball. Our little ones asked to take a trip to the family hot tub almost every hour. Their second favorite spot was the lazy river. One of my favorite things about the trip was being able to spend one-on-one time with each of the kids. Having a parent aide along, as well as Rachel and Al, gave the benefit of having five adults there. It enabled me to spend quality time with each child individually throughout both days. I loved it just as much as they did!”smiling boy in pool at Great Wolf Lodge |

Rachel concludes, “A teenager in The Hubbell Home, Carson*, has been struggling with a rough and tough attitude, trying to push everyone away in his attempt to not get hurt. For me, seeing him there interacting with the other kids brought so much joy to my heart.  I loved watching as he willingly pulled everyone through the lazy river on the ‘trains’ of rafts the kids made. Carson then went down the slides with others because they invited him.  

“When my son Korbyn and I were with Carson relaxing in the hot tub, Korbyn invited Carson to play Marco Polo…just the two of them. I almost told Korbyn to give Carson a break and let him relax a while, but Carson agreed to play before I could say anything. Soon we had people we didn’t even know joining our game, and Carson was so sweet with the younger kids who were playing, letting them tag him since they couldn’t swim as fast.  Seeing his face light up as he played silly games or served another child brought so much joy to my heart.  It was an opportunity for him to have experiences that every child should have. I don’t mean the experience of going to a fancy water park. Rather, it allowed Carson to share love and laughter with people that care about him, with a family.  Those are memories he’ll treasure forever.”

*name changed for sake of confidentiality

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