Friday, April 30, 2010

All I Need to Know I Learned at Girl Scout Camp

(my apologies to Robert Fulgham)

If I had made a list five years ago of all the volunteer positions I thought I might fill in my life, I’m fairly certain that Girl Scout leader would not have been on it.

I was sort of sucked into it in the first place. Sure, I wanted Vicki to be in a troop, but I had absolutely no intention of being any part of that troop.

Didn’t quite work out that way, did it?

Four and a half years later, here I am. Leader or co-leader of two troops, with another one on the horizon.

Call me crazy, but I love it.

This last weekend was our annual neighborhood campout. This was the fourth year for Vicki’s troop and the second for Lexi’s. There are a lot of things we’ve learned at Girl Scout camp over the years.  Let me share some with you:

1. You’re braver than you think.

Vicki on the Giant Swing

2. You really can fly.

Lexi on the zipline

3. It's good to try new things.  Like Girl Scout Soup (recipe: each girl brings her favorite can of soup. Dump them all into a pot, add water according to instructions on cans – give or take a few cans full – and stir. Warm, eat and enjoy. Also good with rolls or that pre-toasted bread they sell in the Hispanic foods section.) (I don’t have any pictures of this because I was busy cooking enough for 30 people. Maybe next year.)

4. People throw up, so prepare for the worst. In the four years we’ve been going to camp, we’ve only had one puke-free year. This year (as well as last) there were two incidents. One was my kid. Thankfully her problem was carsickness. Wish I could say the same for the other girl...
(not a picture of her throwing up)

5. Creativity is cool.

Tie-dye and SWAPS = pure awesome

6. Teamwork is essential for success.

Look closely - a prime example of teamwork this is not

7. Girl Scouting rocks!
(really bad photo pun)

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Random Thoughts Thursday

I’m rereading the Anne of Green Gables series. It’s like revisiting an old friend. Comfort reading at its finest.

When did 4th graders get to be so old? I remember 4th grade.

It’s kind of sad to think that, of all the cheeses in the world, the one named after my country has to be the nastiest one.

It’s also sad when my baby starts referring to her once-beloved Dora the Explorer as “dumb doofus Dora”.

Word thinks I spelled “doofus” wrong, but it doesn’t have any reasonable suggestions for spelling alternatives that would still mean the same thing.

How did I manage for four years in a house with stairs without a canister vacuum?

You’d think after she swallowed the penny we wouldn’t have any more issues with money in the mouth. You’d think so, but you’d be wrong.

This morning I cleaned out the fridge. Ew.  I really should do that more often.  When you can't identify what the thing in the Rubbermaid container used to be, it's been way, waaaaay too long.

Vague Facebook statuses irritate me to no end. C’mon people! If you have something to share, share it. Don’t fish for comments. It’s annoying.

I wish our scanner worked.

I love it when giant old-people cars driven by little old ladies have bumper stickers that make me laugh out loud.

I have the most interesting conversations with Vicki. Last night we talked about atheists.

Today I feel productive. It’s a good feeling.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Psychology 101

This evening Ellie invited me to join her in playing with Barbies. She wanted me to be the big sister Barbie, and her Barbie was the little sister.

I was directed to have my Barbie ask hers what Mom gave her for lunch.

Her response? “182 snacks.”

Then my Barbie was supposed to get mad and ask how come she got so much (because apparently my Barbie didn’t get anywhere near that much. Probably just 74 snacks, or something. Poor thing.) And the reason she got so many snacks for lunch, apparently, is because she’s the youngest.


The conversation went something like this:
My Barbie: "It's not fair!  How come you got so many snacks?"
Ellie’s Barbie: “Go ask Mom why. She’ll tell you.”
Mine: “Okay, fine, I will.” stomp, stomp, stomp over to Mom “Mom, how come she got so much lunch and I didn’t?”
Mom (who was actually Ellie): “Well, sweetie, she got so much because she’s the little sister, and the biggest sisters always get everything all the time, but now it’s the little sister’s turn to get all the snacks and everything."


Some kids whine and complain when they feel like they’re getting the short end of the stick.  My daughter projects onto inanimate objects.

I think now would be a great time to invest in a set of Dr. Leo Marvin hand puppets.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Random Thoughts Thursday

Happy Earth Day!  Today Lexi's class is going to take a walking trip to pick up trash around the school & surrounding neighborhood.  She put rubber gloves and a garbage bag in her backpack but she forgot her lunch.  Go figure.

Why is everything happening this weekend?  I mean EVERYTHING.

The pajama pants are done and ready to be worn at camp tomorrow night!  Yay!

Did you know that if 20 people each dump a can of Campbell's soup into a pot (doesn't matter what flavor - pick your favorite) and you stir it all up together, it's actually quite good?

My brain is on overdrive.

I miss blogging.  Why is it that whenever I sit down to blog, I can't think of anything interesting to say?  Someone give me a topic.  Not a hot-button topic, just something fun.  Ready?...Go!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Random Thoughts Thursday

Sun!  I love the sun!

Finding a poppy seed between pages of a borrowed book makes me smile. I like to think that my friend was as involved in the story as I was and couldn’t bear to put it down, even while eating a poppyseed muffin.

This poor blog has been neglected lately. It’s a combination of being insanely busy and not being able to think of anything to write about when I actually have time to do it.

Ellie and her friend refuse to change their dress-up clothes with the door open. This has nothing to do with me; I’m in the room with them, as is another friend we’re babysitting. No, it’s because their imaginary prince boyfriends are out in the hall and they (the princesses) have to preserve their until now uncared-for modesty.

This article is pretty funny.
So is this commercial. (sorry, boys!)

We love Signing Time at our house. The girls haven’t watched it much lately, but they still know their signs. We sign a lot at church. “Can I go potty?” is a lot easier to say when no one has to say anything at all. I have been reading the blog of Signing Time creator Rachel Coleman lately, and it is incredibly inspiring. These are people I would love to know in real life.

My fingers are blueish-greenish.

Chris joined Facebook. He said he wasn’t going to use it much, but he’s been on there every night since.

This picture makes me smile:

Am I a mean mom if I decide that we need a break from hot dogs for lunch, even if it’s just for one day?

Monday, April 12, 2010

Turns Out I'm Not a Princess

We spent this last weekend in Las Vegas at my little sister's wedding.  The girls were flower girls, complete with poofy dresses and little baskets of rose petals.  And "high heel" shoes.  If you're nine, seven, or four, it was a fairy tale come true.

We had the following conversation tonight at dinner:

Ellie: Grandma and Grandpa are a Queen and King.
Me: Really?  They are?
Ellie: Yep!
Chris: So does that make Mom a princess?
Ellie: No.  Adrie is a princess and James is a prince.  Mom is just Mom.
Chris: But Mom's the mom in our family, and that's even better than a princess, huh?
Ellie: Nope.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Random Thoughts Thursday

I almost forgot to take a picture yesterday. But I remembered, and it was before midnight, so it counts!  97 days and still going strong!

We’re leaving this afternoon on a crazy whirlwind wedding trip. I’d share the insane itinerary, but, you know, this is the internet. Suffice it to say that, other than sleeping, I don’t think we’ll be in one place for longer than four hours the entire long weekend.

But my little sister is getting married! Yay! Totally worth the craziness.

My daughters refer to my parents’ dog as Uncle Riff. I’m so not joking. They want to know why he’s not coming to the wedding.

Every time I go upstairs, I think of something I should be doing downstairs. So I go back down. Then I remember that I went upstairs to get something I needed downstairs, so I go back up and get distracted, thereby forgetting whatever it was I went up to get in the first place. At least my legs will be in good shape.

I have so many random thoughts swirling around in my head, I can’t get any of them to sit still long enough to write them down. Such is life.

I miss writing real blog posts.

I used to think I was busy. I knew nothing then. When did life get so crazy?

I know where all the chocolate is hidden. That’s both good and bad.

But I’m going to eat some more while I finish packing!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Little Wheeled Blocks of Wood

Every year our Girl Scout Service Unit holds a father/daughter activity.  It's usually a dance.

Last night our they held the first (hopefully) annual father/daughter Pinewood Derby.

(Well, it was supposed to be a father/daughter event.  The girls and the dads worked on the cars together.  But if they thought the moms (and in some cases the grandparents and neighbors) were missing out on the race, well, they had another thing coming.  That poor elementary school gym had probably never had so many people inside.)

There were 128 cars entered in the race.  The track had six lanes, and each car raced once in each lane.  That meant 128 heats.  It was a long night, but the Boy Scout pack who provided the track does this on a regular basis and were really organized.  The Girl Scouts all seemed to have a lot of fun, and that, of course, is all that matters.

Althoguh I have a suspicion that the dads, too, had a good time, and were, at the very least, grateful that they didn't have to dance.

Here's the best shot I could get of the cars.  This is not, of course, all the cars, but it does at least show the most important two:

Now comes the part where I brag a little bit about my own children.  If braggy blog posts bug you, and, believe me, I totally understand, tune back in next time for some regularly-scheduled brag-free blogging.

Like I said, each car raced 6 times, and in a totally random order.  Since we were standing behind the starting line, I wasn't able to get any good pictures of the actual racing (although we could at least see the finish line - my camera just won't take decent pictures that far away and in that dim of light), but the scoreboard was projected up on the wall, so I could at least take pictures of the placements.  We went into it not expecting much, just hoping the cars would actually cross the finish line.  And they did!

Lexi's best score:
She placed 3rd three times, and 4th twice, and 6th once.

And Vicki's:
Yay for 1st place!  She also placed 2nd twice, and 3rd, 4th, and 5th one time each.

Overall, the girls placed 51st (Vicki) and 52nd (Lexi), so they were in the top half!

And they can't wait for next year!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Random Thoughts Thursday

This morning I watched Vicki sneak a large and rather-realistic looking plastic spider into her school bag, and I didn’t say anything. That’s love.

I had a fabulous random thought at about 5:00 this morning, but I chose to go back to sleep rather than write it down, and now I have no idea what it was.

I did the breakfast dishes before 8:00 this morning. I’m so proud of myself.

Just don’t ask me about the lunch dishes.

Yesterday I helped two 4th graders sew pajama pants. Eight pairs pretty much down, three to go. Am I crazy? Don’t answer that.

Why are all the doorknobs in this house sticky?

The Spring cleaning bug hasn’t bitten me yet, and I’m not sure I really want it to.

Ellie needs new pants. Let’s just say that a favorite phrase in our house right now is “just say no to crack.”

Chris thought it would be funny one night after dinner to do a sort of dance while he belched. Much to my dismay, the girls thought it was hilarious and beg him to do it every night now (I am not making this up). This morning, proving my point once and for all that he’s a bad influence on the children, Lexi did the same thing. She was so proud, and I just wanted to cry.

Did you know you’re not supposed to bring recording devices, including cameras, into WinCo? I didn’t. At least, not until after I had my quotation marks picture published. Oops.

People actually spend over $100 on an Easter dress for their kids? I won’t even spend that much on three Easter dresses!

Is “denunciate” a word? Because that’s what Ellie does when I tell her I can’ hear her. I’m not sure what makes her think it helps, but it doesn’t.

There is a boy at the girls’ school who looks and acts exactly like Russell from Up.

One day, I will invent a TMI filter for the internet, and I will make millions off it.
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