Where Did Sunglasses Come From?

RKS Xtreme Conv-SilverHey, Cool Campers!

I know all your futures are SO bright that you need to wear shades! Easy to obtain, you can pick a pair up for yourself at any ol’ convenience store. But things weren’t always so. No, sunglasses may have been around for a long time, but they weren’t around forever. When were these crafty specs invented and who were the first folks to wear these cool shades?

Well, I suppose the very first ‘sunglasses’ were invented by the Alaskan Inuits—also known as Eskimos. They didn’t look cool as opposed to the shades we wear today, but they worked and they’re at least 2000 years old!

The Eskimos (or more like ancestors of the Eskimos) usually made these ‘snow goggles’ as they were called out of bone or ivory. They didn’t have lenses but, instead, simple slits for your eyes to see through while still blocking out the harsh sunlight reflecting off the brilliantly blinding ice and snow.

For at least a few hundred years, Chinese judges in the Middle Ages wore sunglasses. They were made with a smoke-colored quartz for the lenses and therefore actually looked somewhat familiar to our sunglasses today. They didn’t wear them as protective eyewear from sunlight, however. These judges wore them to hide any expression that their eyes may reveal—the same purpose as hardcore Poker players.

Darkened glasses were thought to help to correct certain impairments in vision around the 18th Century and by were finally sold as ‘sunglasses’ once again on the beaches of Atlantic City by one Sam Foster. Seven years later, a man named Ray Ban made the first polarized pair of sunglasses that reduce glare from sunlight.

A commercial for Foster Grant sunglasses in 1960 skyrocketed the popularity for this product making them the cool, long-lasting fashion that they still are today.

Thanks for reading, Camp Fans!
- John

Making Friends At Camp

Hey, Friendly Folks!

Welcome to my fourth and final segment on the topic of making friends at summer camp. Over the course of the previous three posts in this series, I’ve talked a lot about how friendship is an effortless and certain affair in the world of summer camp. You’ll naturally start talking to other kids and become fast friends with them.

Making friends is simply what happens at camp—a given.friends

Today I want to talk about the lifelong benefits of the assured friendships you’re going to build at camp. Having a network of friends can create opportunities of a lifetime for you. I know of a married couple who first met one another at—you guessed it—summer camp!

That’s probably one of the more extreme cases, but nevertheless, it’s true! There are plenty of other opportunities besides finding your future spouse that can open up to you by making friends with the right people at camp.

For instance, if you make friends with someone at camp who lives on the other side of the country, you might learn a thing or two about wherever your friend is from—you might even be able to arrange a visit to your friend’s house and see life in someone else’s neck of the woods.

Not everyone can find ways to hang out with the friends they made at summer camp OUTside of camp. But that doesn’t mean that making those friends was pointless and a waste of time—NO! That was just giving you some practice at what you’ll be doing all throughout your life.

No matter where you are, there are always going to be other people around you. Camp offers you a great experience to become a part of a community. This is what you’ll do come high school (if that hasn’t come already), it’s what you’ll do in college, and what you’ll do all throughout adulthood.

And that’s a good thing too, because one thing you’ll always need around is a friend.

Thanks for reading, Campers.


- John

Who Ever Thought Of Bed Sheets?

Hey, Camp Fans!

Today I want to look into the history of bed sheets. They date back at least 10,000 years—possibly over 36,000! Mankind has been catching Zzz’s since before we walked on two legs…and then some. But they certainly weren’t fitted mattress sheets with colorful patterns and prints of favorite superheroes. So just what did our very first bed sheets look like?

Mankind’s first attempt at using ‘bed sheets’ was more-or-less just a crude pile of straw, leaves, and twigs. At the same time, however, dyed fibers of the flax plant have been found in prehistoric caves, suggesting that these were once woven fabrics made from wild flax.

Flax became the leading fabric for woven linen—in fact, flax is actually where the word ‘linen’ comes from as the Latin word for flax is ‘linum’. It was so popular in ancient Egypt that they would use it as a form of money. The wraps of their preserved mummies were made of linen.

Linen fabrics aren’t the easiest to spin and they’re typically expensive (which is why mummies were wrapped in it, displaying their wealth). But it is a very durable, long-lasting bedsheetsfabric (which we also see from Egyptian mummies).

Still linen sheets couldn’t truly be considered ‘bedding’ as beds didn’t exist until over 3000 years ago when ancient Egyptians invented the elevated sleeping platform—the precursor of the bed.

Hard-to-spin flax was soon replaced in 1793 when Eli Whitney invented the Cotton Gin (the Gin is short for engine, by the way), creating a much faster method of separating seeds from cotton. Cotton became the new fabric for bed sheets. And while the fabric changed, the name didn’t. We still call our bed sheets linens when they’re 100% cotton.

True linen, made from flax is still spun today and preferred by some as it’s a softer, healthier material.

I hope you learned a thing or two today and go to bed tonight with a new appreciation of your bed sheets. Thanks for reading, Camp Fans!


- John

We Hope You Enjoy Juliann’s Camp Lib

Hey, Camp Libbers!

For today’s Camp Lib, I paid Juliann a visit. Juliann is our Graphic Artist as you may recall my mentioning in previous posts. Appropriately, I wrote Juliann’s Camp Lib about personalized products that we make here at Everything Summer Camp—often times with artwork designed by Juliann. Then I filled it full of blanks and had her fill them in!Juliann

If you want, you can write down your own words for the blanks too. Just use the following list of requested words and enjoy your own version of Juliann’s Camp Lib below. And remember—a noun is a person, place, thing, or idea; a verb is an action word; and an adjective is a word that describes a noun while an adverb is a word that describes a verb.



A Past Tense Verb

• A Verb Ending in ‘ing’

• A Noun

• A Noun

• A Number

• A Noun

• A Plural Noun

• A Celebrity

• A Noun

• A Nonsense Word

• A Plural Noun

• A Verb Ending in ‘ing’

• A Noun

• A Verb

• A Verb

• A Noun

• An Adverb

• A Past Tense Verb

• An Adjective

• A Verb Ending in ‘ing’

• An Adjective

• An Adjective

• A Noun

• An Adjective



I’m all ran up for my upcoming season of summer camp. All my frolicking gear and other camping supplies reflect my own armadillo thanks to cool designer tools online.

My sunglasses trunk has 45 different colors with the coolest design on the dumpster and it’s just covered with camp boxes as well as pictures of Dennis Rodman because s/he’s my fav!

My gut clothing all sport the colors of my summer camp (Camp Kerplunk) and they have cute little fire hydrants and sayings on them like “I’m a Bathing Anteater,” and “Inhale, Laugh, Camp.”

My ointment and laundry bag are monogrammed so I’ll know effortlessly which is mine. I also ordered personalized name labels for my clothes and other fuzzy items.

I’m also all set for gliding my letters home with my cool camp stationery. It’s decorated with poofy artwork and campy designs. How PIMPLY!

Just wait for everyone at camp to get a cottage cheese of me and all my moist camp gear!


There Is Still Time To Shop For Summer Camp With Us

Hey, Camp Preppers!

Or should I say, ‘Camp Procrastinators’?! June 21 is the first official day of summer! So first of all, allow me to say Happy Summer to you all! And secondly, let me ask why you haven’t yet purchased everything off your kid’s packing list for summer camp?


Just kidding. My purpose isn’t to make you feel bad, it’s to give you fair warning that the time you keep on pushing forward has now hit its limit. The first day of summer is always a good way of marking the deadline to complete your kid’s packing list. It’s like an alarm that goes off today: DING DING DING!!! Time to get your camp gear!

And now for a shameless plug:

To all you parents out there reading this and slowly growing more and more panicked with every word you digest—stop. You’re okay. That’s right—there’s no call for alarm. Today is simply your queue. It’s a great reminder. It’s a good day to go by to startESC logo gathering gear.

No matter how much of your list you have left, you’re not too late. I can’t tell you how often we get calls this time of year from flustered parents saying, “I know I’m probably calling too late, but…”

Well, you’re not.

See, we here at Everything Summer Camp understand the hectic schedules and busy lifestyles of the modern parent. Give us a call. It may be last minute—but it’s not too late. At Everything Summer Camp, we ship FAST.

Our competitors will have you ordering a whole month in advance or emptying your wallet to get your stuff on time. At Everything Summer Camp we stock all products or make them in-house so your entire order will ship in days not weeks. It’s as simple as that.

Place your order with us today and you’re sure to receive within two to seven business days. Happy Summer, Camp Fans!


- John

Get To Know Ryan A Little Bit Better

Hey, Fans of Everything Summer Camp!

Almost exactly one year ago I posted about the manager of our Shipping Department and longtime employee of 11 years, Ryan. I told you all about what his job entails and how proud he is of the work environment that he’s established with the crew in Shipping—the camaraderie that they’ve formed.

Ryan works as hard as or even harder than what he expects out of his shipping crew and ryanhe’ll even sacrifice his sports radio to give his crew the morale boost of their varied musical choice. From Country to Kansas to Michael Jackson, the Shipping Department is always a hoppin’ place in the summer.

But today, we’ll delve a little deeper to get a picture of what Ryan’s life looks like outside of work. We won’t have to look too far since he lives just a mile away from the workplace here at Everything Summer Camp. A local resident of Boyd, Ryan lives with his lovely family: his wife, Stephanie, and their beautiful three-year-old daughter, Kaylee.

Ryan is originally from the nearby town of Cadott and even admits that, due to its closeness, he still commonly thinks of it as his hometown, despite the fact that he and Steph found their place and moved to Boyd a whole seven years ago.

Ryan’s little family enjoys annual visits between his parents as well as his parents-in-law. They often have get-togethers with Ryan’s extended family for holidays like Christmas and the Fourth of July. And, of course, Ryan enjoys his everyday life at home.

An avid (and rather skilled) golfer, Ryan is big into sports, closely following any of the major ones. He’s also hired on each season to be the coach of The Hornets, Cadott’s high school basketball team which he thoroughly enjoys.

As for Steph, “she doesn’t have any hobbies besides spending my money,” Ryan laughs, quickly following his statement with an eager, “No, no, no! Don’t put that. It’s just a sick joke!” Between being a devoted mother and loving wife, Steph squeezes in her commute to her job in Eau Claire, Wisconsin at Sacred Heart Hospital.

When Ryan’s not busy at work, coaching, or spending quality time with his family at home, he somehow finds time to play roles in such films as Remember the Titans and The Notebook.

Thanks for reading, Camp Fans!


- John

More Great Tips From Dr. Thurber

Hey Camp Fans!

Throwback with us once again to another Throwback Thursday Blog post in which we link back to a past post that we feel is so valuable we want to get its information in front of you again. Today’s Throwback post goes back to a post from last year in April, written by Dr. Dr. Chris ThurberThurber about keeping in touch with your kids during their camp stay.

This post prepares you for a couple weeks without seeing your kids, talking to them on the phone, or even texting them! Take Dr. Thurber’s advice on today’s Throwback Thursday Blog post.


- John

Take The Day Off To GO FISHING

Hey, Fishing Fans!

If you love fishing then you’re sure to love today since it’s Go Fishing Day! Today is meant to be spent fishing and nothing else! So pack up your poles and tackle box; today encourages you to get some time off from your everyday and go catch a fish in the closest body of water you can find—be it a small, splashing stream or a rough, raging river.

Most people who go fishing enjoy it. It’s hard not to as it typically offers a quiet and peaceful setting out on the water or a shady shore. I fondly recall my first fishing trip at Crowduck Lake in Canada. It’s relaxing, recreational, and rewarding!

 Fishing is in our bloodlines as it’s been practiced and taught continuously on down through the ages; so—whether you’re fishing for your dinner or for a relaxing afternoon—you’re doing something ancient when you cast your line!boy fishing

 But ‘ancient’ doesn’t even BEGIN to properly illustrate how old fishing is! Fishing is real old, like PREHISTORIC kind of old. Long before the ancient Egyptians caught Perch and Tilapia in the Nile, Stone Age cavemen caught fish. This is in what’s called the ‘Paleolithic Era’. It was around 40,000 years ago.

Of course, THIS ancient of modern man did not have the means (nor the brainpower) of constructing a fishing pole, so the act of casting is not 40,000 years old, but the act of hunting seafood is. Early man relied quite heavily on the seafood diet, using a large ‘fish hook’, carved from bone to catch fish.

Even as early as 4000 years ago, some Egyptian documentations point toward fishing being practiced as a sport as opposed to a means to a meal. It took some time for recreational fishing to catch on in more modern times. Around 1500s and 1600s popularity boomed for recreational fishing.

It’s popularity remains strong today with fishing shows, younger fishers, and days dedicated to fishing. Thanks for reading—now go catch a fish!


- John

Getting to know yourself at camp

Hey, Campers!

Last week I posted the second installment of my ‘Making Friends at Camp’ series about how easy it is to make friends at summer camp whether you’re a little shy or dreadfully terrified of talking to others. The thing is, once you’re there at camp, you don’t even think about it. You’ll naturally start talking to other kids and become fast friends with them.

It’s just a given. That’s what happens at camp.

But it’s not all that happens at camp. Sure, spreading your social wings and making friends is what camp is all about, but it’s also about getting to know yourself better. See, a friendshipfunny thing happens when you’re away at camp because when you’re away from mom and dad, you do things a little differently than you otherwise would.

You take some healthy risks that you find within your character, you make decisions based on different values, you even behave differently and may discover things about yourself that you never realized were there before. This is all a part of the summer camp experience. You’ll begin to get a sense of the boundaries you’ve set for yourself thanks to opportunities like making friends at camp.

Making new friends at camp is made possible by these discoveries, after all, we need to have some sense of our own personality in order to share it with somebody else. But the experience of making new friends at camp can also help to fuel those self-discoveries too and so goes the cycle goes as both actions help encourage the other.

Isn’t summer camp great?!

Be sure to come back to my Blog next Tuesday to read the last segment about making friends at summer camp and the lifelong benefits of the relationships you build when you’re there.

Thanks for reading.

- John

The Origin of Stationery

Hey, Camp Fans!

Everything Summer Camp clearly understands the decoration as well as the demand behind stationery—why else would we offer awesome camp stationery from reputable brands like Paper so Pretty and Seal & Send?! But, stationery isn’t really a necessary Paper So Prettyproduct. It may be a cool product, but it’s something that’s come along in our modern world, it can’t have much history to it, right?


Not too surprisingly, stationery has been made and used for thousands of years. The first stationery most likely came from Ancient Egypt when they were looking for a different form of a writing surface other than the parchment paper they made out of thin sheep and goatskin. The parchment didn’t take to humidity very well and it would split easily.

They wanted something that was sure to keep for better documenting purposes. They developed what they called ‘papyrus’ (thought to be the word that we get ‘paper’ from) made from the pithy plant. It stood up to the dry conditions of Egypt as well as the humidity.

These ancient Egyptian documents of papyrus are a few thousand years old and still intact today! And guess what! They’re not just plain sheets with writing; they’re covered in ornate designs, painstakingly copied. This is unarguably stationery and not just ‘paper’.

Papyrus was imported from Egypt to Europe though it didn’t have the same shelf life in the cooler, northern temperatures. But in the year 105 A.D., a man named Cai Lun from China invented paper as we know it today, using tree bark.

It was this invention along with the printing press that brought along new opportunities for stationery designing. Sometime around 1450, Johannes Gutenberg’s press took away the tedious task of writing everything out by hand.

By the 1800’s, more than 180 paper mills created hundreds of jobs for Americans. Some people worked for stationery printers. People back then wanted stationery for the same reasons we do today like weddings invitations, birth announcements, written recipes, they even had monogrammed papers for letters and notes.

Demand has only increased throughout the years for printed stationery as people enjoy the atmosphere that stationery designs can add to an invite, a recipe, or a letter home from summer camp.

Thanks for reading.

- John