Reaching a Summit

Summit pin

Brownie Journey Summit Award

It’s a good thing that Anna is bridging to Juniors in August, because her Brownie vest is almost full! Together with the other brownies in her troop, Anna completed the World of Girls Journey in April. And in doing so, she also earned the Journey Summit Award for completing all three journeys.

world of girls badges

World of Girls Badges

We organized a condensed version of the World of Girls Journey, completing a badge each week, and finishing the whole journey in a month.

Week One: Hear a Story. We assigned a single story in the World of Girls book to each girl the week before, and they told the stories to their fellow Brownies during our first World of Girls Journey meeting. Then we “flew” around the room, traveling to where each story took place (Jordan, Thailand, and Nunavut, Canada) and talked about the ways people in each country shared stories. We created a story of our own using “Tell Me a Story” cards, and we finished with an “All About Me Limbo,” where each girl said something unique about herself while walking under a foam pool noodle.

Week Two: Change a Story (Part One). We talked about the stories from Week One, this time focusing on how each story could be changed. We then talked about stories in our own community and ways in which we could change them. Together, we decided to take some of the money we raised through cookie sales, and give it back to the community by going to a nearby St. Vincent de Paul and buying children’s books for kids staying at a local domestic abuse shelter.

Week Three: Change a Story (Part Two) and Tell a Story (Part One). We met at St. Vincent’s and spent about a half hour shopping for books. Each girl picked out five picture books and five chapter books at $0.50 each ($5 per girl charged to the troop account). Then each girl selected one of the books she chose, and agreed to write a short paragraph about why she selected it.

Week Four: Tell a Story (Part Two) and World of Girls. The girls each completed the “Tell a Story” step by recording their paragraph on their favorite book on video. Then we got out white poster sheets and colored pencils, and each girl made a bright and happy picture to cheer up the families living at the shelter. This last activity brought the journey to a close.

Two weeks later, we held our Cookie Celebration and handed out all the awards that the girls earned during Cookie Season. First, we called up all the Brownies and awarded them the two Cookie Business badges and the two Financial Literacy badges. As you can see, she went from two full rows of badges to almost three in one night!

Brownie badges

Four new cookie badges!

Then after the Juniors received their badges, each girl came up individually and received her patches and prizes based on the number of cookies sold. Everyone who sold cookies earned at least one patch, a certificate, and a prize. Anna, as top seller, got the most awards, the most prizes (tied with the top selling Junior), and a special certificate.

Cookie fun patches

Check out all the patches!

Ten fun patches total, just from cookie season, and as I said before her vest is almost full.

We're running out of room!

Just a little space left in the corner.

For being in Brownies only a year, and talking half that time to find a stable troop, she’s done a fantastic job. We’re so proud of her.

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Another Badge Update

Brownies can do anything

Anna’s Brownie badge progress has slowed up a bit since the start of school. We had to switch troops once again in October, but now we’re settled into an excellent troop with a great leader who also happens to be a very good friend. So it’s time to start ironing and sewing again …

Making Games (January 22).

Making Games (1/21/15).

Anna began this badge at a Girl Scout Halloween/Juliette Low Birthday Party last October. She created a party game called Pin the Hat on the Brownie Elf, a mystery touch-box game, and a find-the-differences picture game.

Then at our troop party in December, she taught everyone a variation of Four Corners called “Trefoil.” Instead of separating into four groups, the girls split into three. And instead of the number called being “out,” the other two are. The goal of the girl who’s it (Anna) is to eliminate everyone. The goal of the other girls is to be the last one left.

Finally, at our meeting last night, Anna introduced a brand-new sport she invented called “Cookie Relay.” The nine girls split into three teams and ran a relay. The first girl in each team had to pick out a cookie based on a description, the second girl had to make correct change from a collection of play money, and the third girl had to find an appropriate hello, thank you, or cookie description. The first team to finish (without making a mistake) wins. Everyone enjoyed the game and learned important cookie-selling skills too.

Computer Expert (1/22/15)

Computer Expert (1/22/15)

Anna started this one at the beginning of January and is all set to finish it tonight. The first step in this badge is by far the most important—reading and signing an Internet Safety Pledge. After that, she created a picture in a paint app on her iPad, looked up a bird she saw in our backyard and correctly identified it, and researched Brazil to prepare for World Thinking Day next month.

This evening, she’ll write  “thank you” emails for her birthday presents and assemble a five-song playlist to share at her next Brownie meeting. And that will complete her Computer Expert badge.

 

Brownie Quest badges

Brownie Quest (in progress).

Finally, there’s our current journey, Brownie Quest. The Brownies in Anna’s troop are working on this set of badges together. Last month, we completed the requirements for the first two keys—Discover and Connect—and last night we brainstormed ideas for a community service project to complete the third key. The plan is to pick a project next week and try to complete it before booth sales start.

Brownie Cookie Badges

Wait! I almost forgot about Cookie Badges!

Our Oregon Coast Journey, Part Three

Cloud bank over Tillamook Bay

Tillamook Bay

As part of her Brownie work this summer, Anna is taking the Wonders of Water journey. Because she’s currently between troops (for reasons I won’t go into here), she’s taking this journey over the summer with us, and our Oregon Coast trip was a big part of it.

Our first full day on the coast ended in a little town called Garibaldi. On our second day we visited the Tillamook Cheese Factory and the Blue Heron French Cheese Company, both in Tillamook, and then drove the Three Capes Loop down to Pacific City.

The first cape on the loop is Cape Meares, home of the Cape Meares Lighthouse.

Cape Meares Lighthouse

Cape Meares Lighthouse

At only two stories tall, it’s the shortest of the Oregon Coast Lighthouses. The height of the cape made a taller lighthouse unnecessary. Built in 1890, the lighthouse guarded the entrance to Tillamook Bay until it was deactivated in 1963. The lighthouse was spared from demolition by public support, but suffered several major acts of vandalism over the next few years before the State Parks department took over the site in 1968.

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Our Oregon Coast Journey, Part Two

Anna and the Seaside sign

In Seaside, Oregon

As part of her Brownie work this summer, Anna is taking the Wonders of Water journey. Because she’s currently between troops (for reasons I won’t go into here), she’s taking this journey over the summer with us, and our Oregon Coast trip was a big part of it.

After leaving Astoria, we drove down to Seaside to visit the Seaside Aquarium. The aquarium is small and easy to miss. It can’t compare in size or scope to the Oregon Coast Aquarium, but it features one activity that its larger cousin lacks.

Seal tank

Seals waiting to be fed.

You can buy fish and feed the seals.

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Our Oregon Coast Journey, Part One

The Columbia River Maritime Museum, in Astoria, Oregon.

Photo: Steve Morgan (CC BY-SA 3.0)

As part of her Brownie work this summer, Anna is taking the Wonders of Water journey. Because she’s currently between troops (for reasons I won’t go into here), she’s taking this journey over the summer with us, and our Oregon Coast trip was a big part of it.

Our first stop on our way to the coast was Astoria, Oregon, the earliest European settlement on the Columbia River and a major West Coast port. While there, we visited the Columbia River Maritime Museum and learned about the river and its perils.

Wall display with buoy.

Reading about the perils of crossing the bar.

The Columbia River Bar is where the outward flow of the Columbia River meets the inward flow of the Pacific Ocean. The collision between two massive and opposing flows of water creates one of the most dangerous shipping areas in the world, long known to sailors as the “Graveyard of the Pacific.”

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