Jul 14, 2009

Who's Your Twin?

I was at the local donut shop getting coffee this morning. And the daughter of the owner, who has seen me at least once a week for the last year, asked me if I worked at the bank next door. She was in utter shock when I said "no." She swore that I worked there and couldn't get over the fact that it wasn't me.

Reminded me of the numerous times I've been chased at the store or in the mall by individuals calling my name (or "a" name that wasn't mine), swearing that they knew me. Even after catching up and talking to me for a few minutes, they would still not believe I wasn't the person they thought I was.

So, leads to me to believe the old adage of "everyone has a twin somewhere in this world" is TRUE.

Who's my "true twin?" I'd have to say Belinda Carlisle, lead singer of the Go Go's.

OK, so I know we don't really look alike. But stay with me. Here's why I think we're twins.....I am a child of the 80's. All through High School, people told me I looked like Belinda Carlisle. Then, I cut my hair short (molly ringwald in Breakfast Club style...see SILLY photo taken in about '86/'87) and was sort of "mod" (i.e., wearing lots of black). When I cut my hair, I received comments ALL the time that I looked like her. When I went to college, comments continued. And the topper was one time I was at a bar, and a guy I did not know walked by and said "belinda." TRIP!

It's probably because we both have light hair, round faces, chubby cheeks, and high cheek bones.

So, when that many people say you look like her, you're twins...Right? HA!

(By the way, did you notice I haven't changed a bit from my 80's photo to now.... r i g h t ...)

Who's your twin?

Jul 6, 2009

Dangers of RSS Feed into Twitter Account

I'm a victim! First time ever (hee hee).

Recently, I learned through kind followers on Twitter that "inappropriate" links were showing up in my Twitter postings. (very bad bad stuff). At first, I thought my account had been hacked. After further investigation, I learned that my automated RSS feed from my google alert "allintitle: girl scouts" was pulling in XXX information. It happened two or three times in a week, (appalling, I know). I immediately shut down my auto feed and now post updates manually.

Thankfully, those who follow me immediately alerted me to the situation with comments such as "Not your usual feed," "doesn't look like something you'd post," "is everything Ok?".

The moral of the story -- auto feeding is not always the best approach. So be careful.

Thank you to everyone who follows and understands!

5-Finger Behavior Contract

At the beginning of each year, my girl scout troop sets rules and expectations for the year. I learned the 5-Finger "Full Value" method at a Girl Scout training (I believe it's used in outward bound programs as well). Highly effective and the girls enjoy doing it. To find more "full value" contract ideas, just google "5-finger contract" or "full value contract."

5-Finger "Full Value" Contract

Large piece of paper (tape a few together if you need)

1) Each girl traces their hand on the piece of paper, side-by-side in a "friendship" circle.

2) INSIDE THE CIRCLE -- the girls write all the things we ask of each other such as selling cookies, positive attitude, safety, cleaning up, rules, attend meetings, wear sash, say hello whenever we see each other etc. Commitments should apply inside AND out of school.

3) OUTSIDE THE CIRCLE -- the girls write all the things that we keep OUT of troop - such as put downs, negativity, disrespect.
  • Agreement for inside and outside circle should fulfill the five categories: Physical & Emotional Safety; Participation/Commitment; No Put-Downs or Negatives; Taking Responsibility for Personal Actions; Celebrate Efforts
  • Modify categories for your troop/group
4) DISCUSS -- each girl has to agree to EVERYTHING written on the paper. If they can't agree to it, then discuss as a troop whether or not it should be listed.

5) Girls discuss consequences of not fulfilling contract and agree.

6) If everyone agrees, they sign their hand as a binding contract.

7) Bring contract to every meeting. I take a picture of it and print for their Troop binders.

This is a powerful activity to open conversation with the troop. The first time I did it, we wrote "everyone has to say HI to each other -- whether at school or at sports -- no matter who we are with." Surprising, this was hard for some girls. And surprising, some of the more "popular" girls found this hard. It was eye-opening for the others to know that even those who seem to have it all can be shy. But they discussed and all agreed to do it. It has made a huge difference in the respect levels w/in my troop.

The Spider Web of Friendship

Traditions are an important way to build connection with a group of people or an organization. In college, I was an Alpha Phi -- our traditions included ceremonies, songs, and handshakes. To this day, when I see my sorority sisters, we reminisce about the traditions we shared that only we knew about.

I wanted to share a tradition of my Girl Scout Troop 31621. (reposted for the Friendship Book).


SUPPLIES: a ball of yarn

Have group sit in a circle.

  • Leader begins.
  • Hold onto the end of the yarn and unravel enough yarn so you can throw the ball across the circle to another girl.
  • Each girl passes the ball of yarn to another girl across the circle while holding on, creating a big spider web.
  • Create a theme so as each girl passes the ball the to the next girl, they need to say something positive. For example:
    --What I admire most about you is....
    --What I learned about you this weekend is...
    --Why I enjoy being with you is....
    --The leadership quality you most posess & why is....
    --You are the example of a good Girl Scout because....
    --Have them pass to someone they don't know and say, "I'd like to get to know you better because...."
  • As the girls get older, I set rules that they can't say "nice" or "pretty" as a comment. They need to try harder.
  • When everyone has passed the ball, hold on for a few minutes and reflect. Reflect on you day's activities together. Tell the girls that in order for the spider web to be strong, everyone must hold tight. If one girl lets go, it will crumble. This is why we need a strong troop with strong participation (we don't want a crumbling web...). Give the girls an opportunity to reflect as well.
  • To unravel, everyone can drop the web gently -- then roll up the ball. OR, take it as an opportunity to pass the ball in reverse, winding it as you go and giving opportunity for the girls to comment back to those who passed them the ball.
I started the Spider Web tradition as Daisies after a meeting. Then we introduced it in First Grade during our first campout before lights out. Now, the girls ask for it every year! It's been very special and I hope they will always remember it!

Jun 30, 2009

Wow. Nothing!

I realized I have not posted since June 14th. So I'm sitting here trying to think about what to post and I draw a blank. Is it due to lack of creativity? Is it due to the fact that there isn't anything annoying me or new or overly exciting? I think it's because things are just "good" right now.

That's right -- life is good. Kids are healthy. Family is (mostly) healthy. What else is there?

Sometimes, when things are at par, we fail to think things are exciting. I'm taking this moment to remind myself that "par" is exciting. If this was golf, and we hit every hole at par, we'd be thrilled. Why aren't we as thrilled with life at par? Maybe because par can seem boring in life. Maybe because par means "everday" in life.

I'm here to announce --- PAR IS GOOD!

So if you ever find life is boring, uneventful or not exciting, think about it -- is life at par? If so, this is good.

Jun 14, 2009

An example of what the world has come to....

I have decided to treat my 10 y/o daughter to her first concert. After-all, Miley Cyrus is touring this summer. What better way to begin? (Unlike my first concert -- Andy Gibb at the Concord Pavilion. I was 9. Went with friends. We were on the lawn and I brought my holly hobby sleeping bag to keep warm. Ahhhh, memories).

I asked daughter if she would like to go and the answer was, "Yes yes yes!!!!" I called her friend and friend's mom and they are both on board as well. So, we're all set. Just need to get the tickets.

Who knew that buying tickets would be SUCH A CHORE!!!!!!

Take a look at this challenge (thankfully, I lived through it).

6/8 - found out about the concert. Called friends, they are on board as well. Unfortunately, ticket sales go as follows (very deflating):

  • MileyWorld.com Presale Mon, 06/08/09 10:00 - Tue, 06/09/09 NOTE: COSTS $30 TO JOIN MILEY WORLD, WHICH GIVES YOU ACCESS TO THE PRESALE
  • American Express Presale Wed, 06/10/09 -Fri, 06/12/09
  • Onsale to General Public Sat, 06/13/09 10:00 AM
6/10-6/12 - I start searching for American Express pre-sale tickets. Honestly, the seats were NOT THAT GREAT. So I decided to wait until the general sale to see if I can get better seating

6/13 - logon at 10am sharp to ticketmaster to begin searching for tix. NOT THAT GREAT. So I call ticketmaster. Apparently, gone is the day when you can try to get good seats. They can NOT tell me what seats are available. They can simple say "here's best available -- take or leave." And while I searched online at the same time as the rep searched, I was getting a few rows closer than him. RIDICULOUS.

3 hours later -- still searching. but the same sections/same rows keep coming up. Finally, I broke down and just bought the darn tickets. They aren't horrible. But not what I wanted.

6/14 - day after bought tickets. Went on to tickemaster and the same rows/sections were popping up again. WHAT IS WITH THIS?

I find it a SHAME that we can no longer aspire to obtain good tickets. Yet, through a google search, I found a slew of ticket "agencies" with awesome seats...for $385 each. RIDICULOUS.

Thanks to scalpers and "agencies", tickemaster is forced to put these crazy seating controls in place. So the average person who wants to enjoy a good concert is no longer able to.

If anyone has tips on how to get through this system, please share. There is no reason we should all suffer like this. Some of my greatest memories are front row at a favorite concert. I want my children to grow up with the joy of music -- and being close shows that "rock stars" are just people.

What's an average joe (or joanie) to do????

Jun 11, 2009

Cute Daisy Chain Beanie Hat

Found this really cute crochet pattern for a daisy chain beanie hat. Think I'll make them for my girl scout troop for our next camporee...only add ear flaps and "braid" ties (the new thing).

View the pattern

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