Friday, January 22, 2016

Girl Scout Promise Cross Stitch Chart

What can I say? I'm hooked on getting some of these ideas charted out... I've seen them a million times and it's been impossible to find charts the way I want them. I hope you are enjoying my craziness, too. 

The latest in the cross stitch charts is the Girl Scout Promise with the Traditional Membership Trefoil. 

This probably makes me happier than I should be, but I can't help it.

Of course, I'm happy to share. I did this chart 2 different ways... one, as you see to the left with a few colors and another version as a monochrome chart. 

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Daisy: Count It Up Leaf, Talk it Up Leaf, Cookie Activity Pin

One question a lot of new leaders ask me is "Can you combine activities and earn multiple things?" Now, I would say this is a personal preference and I don't suggest you water down any badge, but i also don't suggest you beat a dead horse, so to speak. You will find, especially during Cookie Season that the Cookie Badges tie in with the Cookie Activity Pin. My thought is, if you discuss it well and cover it well, then it counts!

So, in one meeting, we went through the Cookie Activity Pin and tied it in with the Count It Up and Talk It Up Leaves for the Daisy program. Just double check and make sure you cover all the requirements for all. You may end up doing 7 things instead of 5. That's still better than 15 things, when some are repetitive.

NOTE: I am going to shorten Cookie Activity Pin  to CAP to save myself a little typing. Okay? Cool.

The Breakdown of the three earned items

For the CAP, you need to discuss:
  1. Goal Setting
  2. Decision Making
  3. Money Management
  4. People Skills
  5. Business Ethics
Count It Up Leaf
  1. Find out how much cookies cost
  2. Learn about different kinds of cookies
  3. Set a Goal
Talk It Up Leaf
  1. Decide how to use money
  2. Talk about how to use money to help others
  3. Inspire your customers
I bet if you look at these lists, you can see how both of the leaves are covered with the CAP. Right? Let's break it down. 

Count It Up Leaf #3: Set a Goal and CAP #1 Goal Setting

We talked about our Council Goal, Service Unit Goal and how that breaks down to individual girl goals. We learned how much we get from cookies per box and what that means for our troop. At Daisy level, goal setting has to have parent involvement and thankfully my parents were there to hear and understand the importance of working together as a team.

Talk It Up Leaf #1 & #2 AND CAP #2 Decision Making

Daisies are young, if you haven't noticed. The thought of having their very own money is exciting. We spent some time discussing the money was theirs as a troop, but not theirs individually. Money should benefit the troop (and others, which is coming). So, we talked about the 3 way split. 1/3 for next year, 1/3 for fun, 1/3 for giving back. With the 1/3 for fun, we talked about various things to do that would be fun. You want them to make the decision, yet you do need to guide them a little... otherwise, they decide that a troop kitten is a great idea! HA!

Be sure to give examples of things the troop needs to purchase... like badges, books, uniforms, event registration, or whatever your troop decides to spend money on. 

Discuss groups in your local community that would benefit from having a little extra help. You don't necessarily need to give the group 1/3 of the income in one lump sum. I like to explain that we do service projects throughout the year and that money is set aside to help out and pay for things we give away. Rarely do we write a group a check. Most of the time, it's more items that we donate to organizations.

Count It Up Leaf #1: Find out how much cookies cost AND CAP #3 Money Management

Since this was the girls first year, I didn't have to go through the whole "Yes, cookies are now $5 a box and not $4 box", but I did mention it because I know their customers will notice. 

We talked about where the money goes from cookie sales. Thankfully, our Council gave us a great chart this year that breaks it down by the box to show how much goes to the baker, administration, troops, service units, etc. Parents appreciated this part of the discussion, too. 

Count it Up #2: Learn about different kinds of cookies and CAP #4 People Skills

We listed all the cookies and then we did a pop quiz to see how many of them knew what color box the Thin Mints came in. I mentioned to parents that I noticed with my older troop that box color was one of the first things the girls had memorized. In fact, when sorting and setting up for booths we often say "I need 6 more oranges" rather than calling cookies by name. It's our own little secret code. 

After we had that down, we practiced dealing with customers... explaining what we were doing, who we were, and why cookie sales are important to our troop and community.

Talk It Up #3: Inspire customers

For this part, we focused on what we feel customers really care about. How can we explain to our customer that they are supporting local troops, helping their community, and they can even buy cookies to donate to a charity we have selected? We went through all this information and even though the girls are young, we discussed how marketing is HUGE for sales. Put your best foot forward. Make eye contact. Don't mumble. Smile! Use good manners no matter if you make the sale or not. Show you care about your customer and their property by watching where you walk, helping out with something you notice, etc. All those things help people feel they are really doing a good thing and not just buying cookies.

CAP #5 Business Ethics

We went line by line and came up with ways we can live the Girl Scout Law during cookie season. I asked parents to please listen and remember they are representing Girl Scouts, as well. It's important to remember we are part of the largest girl-led business in the world and an organization that is over 100 years old. It's cool to be a Girl Scout and it's important to remember our values.

So, there you have it... 2 petals and 1 pin... 1 meeting. It can be done... It can even be done in about 1 hour and 15 minutes.This also works GREAT if you are doing cookie training for families at the same time. That's what I did and it worked marvelously. Then, the girls worked on thank you notes while I did the boring administration part of sales that parents needed to know about. 

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Scout Sampler Cross Stitch or Embroidery

Here is another cross stitch chart I have put together, based on a vintage design. You could use it for embroidery, too. 

I saw this as an embroidery sampler and fell in love. It's so cool. There is just something about the muslin and embroidery thread... it makes me imagine a young girl sitting by lantern light with a hoop and needle and thread. I'm sure they aren't quite that "vintage", but that's my vision.

I have wanted to make it for some time and it's still on the list to stitch. I do, however, have the chart marked now. I just have to figure out if I want to do this as cross stitch or embroidery. We'll see what happens.

Be sure to read the color key... the colors I used for the chart are not the correct colors for the design, though, you could swap them out for your faves or all green would looks great, too. 

I did the page breaks on this design 2 ways, because... well... some of us aren't as young as we used to be and a bigger chart is easier on the eyes. :)

If you decide to tackle it, please let me know! Enjoy!

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Traditional Membership Pin Cross Stitch

I LOVE LOVE LOVE the vintage craft kits that Girl Scouts put out in the 50s and 60s. I have been fortunate enough to lay my hands on a few kits and have yet to get them completed... The one I haven't been able to score the kit or chart, is the traditional membership pin. It's frustrating.

This cross stitch design was part of a kit "way back when" and it's been a search for me for some time to try to find a good chart that I could have my girls do... much to my dismay, Google failed me, so... I have a friend who had a somewhat okay photo and decided to make my own chart.

If you want it, you can download the PDF here: Traditional Membership Pin Cross Stitch

Monday, January 11, 2016

Cricut: Build a Girl Scout

This was shared on the Cricut board.
Scarf is not the correct color, but this
is the idea. 
I made a kaper chart a few years ago that had a character for each girl with her name on it. I laminated them and attached a magnet to the back to move it around my cookie sheet kaper chart. 

It was adorable and at the end of the year, the girls took them home with them. While doing a post today I remembered I had a "formula" for an adorable little Girl Scout paperdoll. 

What you need:

Cricut cutting machine
Paper Doll Dress Up cartridge
various cardstock papers

I cut all the pieces on the 3 3/4” setting
Body (Flesh tone cardstock): Blackout (I drew faces on later and prefer the thicker cut)

Shirt (white or light blue depending on the level uniform you are making): Promboy Shirt

Vest (appropriate vest color cardstock): Leprechan Accessories 2 Shadow - cut off tails and sleeves

Skirt  (appropriate color cardstock; Daisy is blue, Brownie is brown, all others is khacki): Cowgirl Blackout - cut off fringe

Pants (appropriate color cardstock; Daisy is blue, Brownie is brown, all others is khacki): Promboy Blackout

Shoes (appropriate color cardstock): Raggedy Doll Girl Accessories 1

Hat (Daisies and Brownies have beanies, the rest don't) : Outfit 3 shadow cut off antennae

Hair (This is what I used; however you can do whatever style you want): Mermaid headwear

Scarf (new in 2015, the scarves are back... you'll want to see which color to use): Raggedy Boy shift blackout OR Witch shift blackout OR Pilgrim Girl shift Accessories 1 or Cowboy shift Accessories 1 

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Boost Your Cookie Sales

I am part of an amazing Service Team who are constantly coming up with ways to help our leaders. We have put together 2 great resource packets of activities to help you get your girls ready for a successful and fun cookie season!

There are 18 activities in each resource pack AND there is a patch you can earn if you complete 8 of them. 

I'm going to be honest and say that quantities for the patch are VERY limited (less than 400), BUT it's a super cute patch! So, if you think you can get the activities done and you want your girls to have a patch to prove it... order the patch. 

At the least, check out the activities and use them to help your troop prepare for a successful cookie sales season. 

So, why two? What's the difference? No matter what baker your Council uses, we have a Resource Packet for you. There is one for Little Brownie Bakers and one for ABC Bakers. Each have the 2016 lineup, including the optional gluten-free Trios for the ABC Bakers regions. 

And order your patches here: (We have some adorable Lemonade 10th Birthday Patches right now, too.)

Monday, January 4, 2016

Daisy Petal: Gloria - Respect Myself and Others

We reached the Gloria petal about the same time cookie sales began. What a wonderful tie in!

Enjoy Gloria’s Story and talk about it

The overview of Gloria's story is that the Flower Friends are going to a surprise party for their friend. You walk through how it's important to take care of your body, wash and dress appropriately to show respect for others and yourself, and using good manners. At the end you ask the girls questions about the different types of respect and how they showed respect for themselves and others in the story. It's a pretty easy peasy activity.

Invite an Older Girl Scout to talk to your group about ways to respect yourself and others

If you read my blog, you know I have 2 troops. A Daisy and a Cadette troop. My Cadettes have been helping with the Daisies and this was the last meeting they helped. Thankfully, that made it easy to have an older Girl Scout talk with the girls. I would suggest you choose wisely and make sure whomever is speaking with the girls shows a respect for themselves and others. It doesn't really work, otherwise. (Don't scoff at me. You know what I mean! Choose a role model.)

Petal: Practice Respecting Myself and Others

Since the story was all about a birthday party and because we were entering cookie season, it only made sense to me to have the girls make Thank You cards. We talked about making sure they were polite to potential customers and how to thank people for their time, even if they didn't buy cookies. It's easy to get caught up and excited about orders and forget to say thank you, but you try your best to remember if you want repeat customers.

Each girl was given supplies to make 4 thank you cards that they could use for anything they needed. Thanking someone for a gift they received. Thanking a customer for a purchase. Thanking a friend for doing something nice or just being a friend. 

In addition, I had printed out a sheet with cookie graphics and a Thank You message. Each girl signed the sheet and I'll have them photocopied and ready to go with their cookie orders when initial sales arrive.