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Monday, November 30, 2015

The New York Times - Wrong About Girl Scouts - Part 2

In a recent article, The New York Times profiled some little girls (ages 10 - 13) who said that Girl Scouts don't get to do fun things like Boy Scouts!  We beg to differ - and this snapshot of the activities of one troop in 2014 - 2015 proves that's wrong.  Girl Scouts can do anything - I challenge the mother of those girls to start their own troop and do what the girls want to do!

We started the year as always, by welcoming new members – any girl from any town in grades 6 – 12 is welcome to join whether or not she’s been a Girl Scout before.  In October, we visited Camp Wind in the Pines for Teen Escape!  It included high ropes and other challenges but I didn't get any pictures because I was drafted to help substitute for a sick staff member.
Packing for camping trips. One backpack holds all!
We earned our Good Sportsmanship badge at Brookhaven, our meeting place - Capture the Flag is always a favorite game.
In November we began working on the Room Makeover badge. We created pretty bookshelves from ugly Costco cardboard boxes. We learned how interior decorators make ‘inspiration boards’ to guide them in designing a room.
During the winter, we visited the Microsoft store twice, to earn the “Netiquette” and “Digital Moviemaking” badges.

We marched in the Veteran’s Day and Patriot’s Day Parades.  Because Lexington Girl Scouts have such great flags, our troop generally leads the parade – with a little help from our friends!
In December, we visited Concord to meet novelist Heather Vogel Frederick, author of The Mother-Daughter Book Club series.  We had a ‘toast party’ where we made and ate breakfast, lunch, dinner and desserts using toast!  We are writing a ‘toast’ cookbook to be distributed to senior centers and food pantries to help people balance their diets. We sang Hanukkah and Christmas songs at Brookhaven with other Lexington Girl Scouts. In January – winter hiking! We sold cookies, on our own and at three booths. 
We earned our “Novelist” badges with author Jen Malone. 

In February we hosted the Girl Scout Dance at Brookhaven. 
March – Museum of Science Sleepover – most of the troop attended and enjoyed having the museum to ourselves – and hundreds of other teen Girl Scouts.  Intrepid Troop Members experienced space travel in a simulator.

We learned how to lie on a bed of nails!
April – GS Museum Visit – we learned what Girl Scouts were doing in 1920 and old-time first aid!
April – Painting Party – Deb found these chairs in the trash. We turned trash into treasure by painting them to finish earning the Room Makeover badge.

A beautiful result!

May – Encampment – low ropes and stair surfing! Singing and food over the fire!

 May – Historically Speaking India – One girl member created a whole meeting filled with Indian dance, food, saris, and henna decorations!

 We took our traditional end of year trip to  eat ice cream and plan for 2015 - 2016!

We’re looking forward to having more girls join us next year!   Our first camping trip (and high ropes activity) will be in September – come along and help plan our program for next year.

The New York Times - Wrong About Girl Scouts!

Recently the New York Times published an article quoting some ten year-olds criticizing Girl Scouts in no uncertain terms, saying that all GS do is take naps and write letters.  Naps?  I have trouble getting my girls to go to sleep before 3 am!  Those poor girls are being fed a line of hooey by adults with an ax to grind, and the Times isn't doing their due diligence in reporting the facts.  So, here is my 2014 annual report of what my troop did in 2013 - 4, and I'll publish this year's report in my next post.  You can judge from this whether Girl Scouts are able to do "real scouting!"


Troop 1775 – 2014 Activities

We started the year, as always, by welcoming new members to the group – any girl in grades 6 – 12 is welcome to join us whether or not she’s been a Girl Scout before.  In October, the girls who had been indoor rock climbing the year before scaled and rappelled 70 feet off the Quincy Quarry cliffs!

We visited the Microsoft store twice, to earn the “Netiquette” and “Digital Moviemaking” badges. In December, we did Archery at Cedar Hill!  We followed up with a  “Catching Fire” patch program presented by Charlotte and Caroline.  Some of us sang Hanukkah and Christmas songs at Brookhaven with other Lexington Girl Scouts.

We earned our First Aid badges; KK and Eileen helped us remember to keep those improvised splints “BUFF!” (Big, Ugly, Fat and Fluffy!) We did CPR on mannequins, wrapped ankles, tied slings, studied hypothermia and dehydration – it all helped us to prepare for our two May camping trips – we hiked the National Seashore, became Junior Park Rangers, built fires and made s’mores, avoided ticks, poison ivy and snakes, saw both invasive and endangered plant species, watched fox cubs cavort at dusk, learned to canoe, and became experts on putting together propane stoves and washing dishes the Girl Scout way. 

We presented two “Promise Petal” programs to a Daisy troop, and made parade decorations. We ate lots of pancakes after the Patriots’ Day parade (and while camping!) We assembled goodie bags and snacks for the service unit Halloween Party.  We worked on the “Mission: Sisterhood” Journey and some of us finished our “Trailblazer” hiking badge!  It’s been a busy year. 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


Happy Thanksgiving!  At church the other day, one of the "youth group dads" from back in the days when my daughter was part of the group mentioned that Thanksgiving was his favorite holiday because he gets a good meal and family time without having to buy any gifts.  Although I wonder what his wife's feeling are about Thanksgiving (who cooks that meal, eh?) it kind of reminds me of Great Escape! Food and family and friends together.  Here's a few photos from 2015 on that theme.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Vive La France!

I taught a GE workshop on beeswax candle decorating several times. One of my 'students' made this, which I treasure since my wedding anniversary is July 14th (and yes, we chose that date because it was Bastille Day.) This morning, I share my table setting for today with you. 
Vive La France!  Liberte, Egalite, Fraternite.

Friday, November 13, 2015

What We Made Part 3

Mother and daughter GE regulars Brenda and Jen sent me these great photos of what they made at GE this year!
A wine glass painted with a fall motif!
A french memo board made with Christmas-themed fabric and buttons - a perfect place to display holiday greeting cards!
A cosy and attractive scarf - knitted without needles on the arm!
And last but not least, an aid to decluttering - a magazine holder or mail stash, made from a cereal box, scrapbook paper and washi tape!  Bren and Jen will be cosy and warm at home this winter, and as we enter the frantically busy (and mis-named) holiday season, we hope you will be too!

Sunday, November 8, 2015

What We Did 2015 - GAMES!

You know how it is - sometimes things just fall into place and you realize that an event or party has a theme even though you didn't plan it that way?  Well, I think this year we had a games mini-theme going on! Pat and Paula did a "Giant Games" workshop.

Holly's workshop was "Make Your Own Board Games" and it looks as if campers at Favorite this year may be using a board game to help them learn their way around camp!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Fall For Service

The Girl Scouts of Eastern Mass. Alumnae Network is partnering with Project Sweet Peas for an afternoon of service, conversation and refreshments. Join us in making fleece hats and blankets, photo frames and ornaments to donate to families with children in Neonatal Intensive Care Units (NICUs) in Boston-area hospitals.
  We have two opportunities for you to take advantage of:

November 8, 1 – 3 PM (RSVP by 11/5)
Walpole Scout House, 4 Scout Rd, Walpole

November 22, 1 – 3 pm (RSVP by 11/18)
Camp Rice Moody, 29 Rice Rd, Reading

Bring a friend (alumna or not) and consider bringing a current girl member of Girl Scouts. If you are a troop volunteer, bring your whole troop! Please RSVP to or call 857-453-5336. You may also RSVP on Facebook at

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Juliette's 155th Birthday

How did Juliette spend her birthday?  At camp with her girls, of course - and that included a lot of Great Escapers!  Alumnae Day at Camp Cedar Hill was a great success, with food, fun, singing, ropes, archery, and more!