Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Keepsakes for Girl Scouts

Swaps, the tradition of Girl Scouts exchanging keepsakes, started long ago when Girl Scouts and Girl Guides first gathered for fun, song, and making new friends.

Swaps were widely exchanged at national Girl Scout Senior Roundups in the 1950's and 1960's.

In more recent years, some Girl Scouts describe the types of objects now preferred as swaps by calling them:

Special Whatchamacallits Affectionately Pinned Somewhere.

Swaps are still the perfect way for Girl Scouts to meet each other and promote friendship. Each one is a memory of a special event or Girl Scout Sister.

Swaps Basics
Swaps should:
Tell something about the givers or their group. (Girls may include their address or email information so others can write to them.)
Represent the givers' country, community, or local Girl Scout council.

Tips for Swaps Givers
Girls should:

  • Think about the kind of swap they would like to receive from someone else.
  • Try not to spend a lot of money. Consider making something from donated or recycled material.
  • Be creative, and take time to make hand-crafted swaps. (Include directions for making the swap if it is a craft project that can be replicated.)
  • Try to have one swap for each event participant and staff member.
  • Plan ahead so there's time to make the swaps.
  • Make swaps that can be worn, used, or displayed.
  • Ask their group or service unit for help, if needed, in putting swaps together.
  • Make swaps portable. Remember: Swaps must be carried or shipped ahead to the event, where other girls will be carrying them away.

What to Do With Swaps
Girls can:

  • Include swaps with thank-you letters to sponsors and those who helped them go to a travel or destinations event.
  • Make a display or scrapbook for travel night or troop visits.
  • Keep swaps in a memory box or shadow box.
  • Make a quilt, using swaps.
  • Put pins and patches on a hat or jacket.
  • Start a council best-of-swaps collection.

Swap Safety and Etiquette
Girls should:

  • Never refuse to swap with another person.
  • Swap face-to-face, especially if exchanging addresses or email information.
  • Avoid using glass and sharp objects in swaps.
  • Follow all Safety-Wise guidelines.
  • Avoid using food products, unless they are individually wrapped.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Garden Project Preparation

This week's troop meeting was all about our Garden Project Kickoff! With Cookie Season coming to a close, we used this meeting to begin planning and preparation for our upcoming garden project. About half of the funds the girls raised from this year's cookie sales will go towards a school garden next to the carpool lane dedicated to our Superintendent, Mr McMath, who recently passed away in December 2009. This garden will be approximately 15-20 feet long and 10-15 feet deep. It will be a free flowing shape, floating in an open area offset the sidewalk area that is currently dirt and over run by weeds. Our hope is to add beautification to the school grounds for all to enjoy on a daily basis. As well as be a reminder of how much Mr. McMath added positive influence to our lives.

After snack time and opening the meeting with the Girl Scout Promise, we played a game. The girls were given 5 minutes to go around the room and collect as many pictures as they could find. The pictures were hidden all over the room and were a variety of garden pictures. The goal was to familiarize themselves with the variety of items we would be working with as we do our project.

Once the girls found the pictures we discussed what each item was, why we used it, or why was it important. Items discussed were...

a rake
a shovel
garden gloves
a garden hose
earth worms
lady bugs
stepping stones
and a park bench

The park bench is going to be the responsibility of our Junior level of Girl Scouts. Under the supervision of leader, Stephanie, the Juniors will be given a budget of $200.00 to purchase a park bench and possibly have a small plaque made for the bench in honor of Mr. McMath. The girls have until April 5 to purchase the bench and have it at the garden location. The park bench will be a one of the focal points to our garden.

Leading to the park bench will be stepping stones made by each Girl Scout. Like a builder draws his plans for a new building project, so the girls drew their ideas for their stepping stone project. Each girl was given a blank sheet of paper (or two or three if they needed) and were shown some samples of pictures of a variety of stepping stones created by other people. These pictures gave them a visual idea of what stepping stones look like and inspiration for their own creation. (click here to see some of the pictures)

The pictures the girls drew were collected and will help us buy all the supplies needed for each stepping stone. The girls may also collect items from around their house (shells, rocks, etc.) or purchase their own embellishments to put on their stone if they choose to do so.

For those Girl Scouts who were not at this troop meeting, feel free to draw a picture and send it in to me through Jessie's homework folder. If you are unable to get a picture to me, don't worry!... we'll have plenty of embellishments for your Girl Scout to create a beautiful stepping stone.

Next troop meeting we will be creating our stepping stones!
All supplies for this project will be provided.


We are in the first planning stages of a "end of year" Girl Scout Troop #9691 sleepover camping party that will be held at the school tentatively May 14-15 (Fri/Sat). We have received approval from Mr. Campbell to have our party camp out, but have no details as of yet and will give more information as we receive it. We will need to begin planning and getting some committees together for this fun event. Think about how you might want to volunteer. MORE TO PARENTS ON THIS AT A LATER TIME (through email and flyers).

To close our troop meeting this week, we learned two new songs that we'll for sure sing at our camping sleepover.

If You're Happy and You Know It (Alternate version)
submitted by Scott Darrington
Dillon, MT Troop 265

If you're happy and you know it scratch your side,
If you're happy and you know it scratch your side,
If you're happy and you know it then you really ought to show it,
If you're happy and you know it scratch your side.

If you're happy and you know it jump up and down...

If you're happy and you know it say ooh-ooh...

If you're happy and you know it do all three...

(You end looking like a monkey!)

Tom the Toad
Tune: "O Tannenbaum" / "O Christmas Tree"

Oh Tom the toad, Oh Tom the toad,
Why are you lying on the road?

Oh Tom the toad, Oh Tom the toad,
Why are you lying on the road?

You did not see the car ahead,
And now you're marked with tire tread.

Oh Tom the toad, Oh Tom the toad,
Why are you lying on the road?