Wednesday's GS Way meeting went swimmingly, even though I barely planned for it that morning. Picked up some craft pins to make SWAPS with the plastic beads we had in our craft box. I also got out all the markers, watercolors, paper, etc, and had the girls make a picture of a line from the GS Law for a "paper quilt". At first I was thinking it would be nice to have each pick one line, but then thought "well hell, who cares?" and let them pick whatever they wanted. It turned out well, and I'll get a picture of it to post. We sang some camp songs and cleaned up ("Sarah, where do we dump this paint water?" Really? Um... on the floor? In the box? Really? OK, Sarcasm not appropriate with 8yos... um... in the [da da DAAAAAAAA!!!!!] SINK?????? OK. Sarcasm really not appropriate with 8yos..... )
Then after all my hard work (ahem) I see that the Junior req's are really not as close to Brownie as I thought. Oh. They are supposed to celebrate Girl Scout Birthday? Oh well. WTF (silent, of course). Gave the sole Junior (my daughter) her hard-earned badge anyway.
Skit bags have been enormously popular. I bring two bags (for 8-10 girls) with random objects in them. Some are the same in each bag, some are different. No rules-- they needn't use everything. They have 10 minutes to plan and rehearse a skit up to 5 minutes each. They *love* this. What a great game to pull out whenever there is a spare 20 minutes. We've played green light/red light for nearly 2 years straight, I think we're ready for something else! (We have the space for raucous games, thankfully.)
I've been slowly trying to transition the activities to quieter ones. We've been getting paper and art supplies out for the beginning more, teaching camp songs and games more, and now skit bags. There is still quite a bit of noise before and after the meetings, but it's getting less crazy. Preparing for the inevitable time when they grow out of this for the most part.
Oh, and I did pop a message over to my coleader, trying as graciously as I could to make it clear that we need to discuss this kind of reward system first. We didn't discuss it, and I haven't pushed it. She is an amazing coleader, and I don't want to discourage her. She came to our first parent meeting shy and telling us "just tell me what to do and I'll do it, I'm not much of a planner" and now she is a practiced planner. She came pathologically shy, and is leading parent meetings. She sits down with me, poor woman, and steps up and plots out our year, isn't afraid to toss out ideas. I can be inadvertently formidable in this department. My ideas come fast and furiously. I am a brainstormer, thinking in all directions at once, and worst of all, I *think out loud*. Poor gal. I am not shy in the least and I'm constantly pushing her to take on more. Next year I plan to haul her a$$ to leader/daughter camp that I insist the troop pay for ($84, very reasonable) since she gives her all managing cookie sales and last year we just got her a patch.
All is well. Onto November. This Wednesday the potter is returning with our fired pieces to stain and glaze. She only charged us $200 for 6 hours of her time and materials. What a find, and so much fun. So often I try connecting with people and it doesn't work out, and this fell into place so easily, I'm thrilled.
"She is a mermaid, but approach her with caution. Her mind swims at a depth most would drown in."