by Molly B Cox
I wasn’t a Mare Scout when I was younger. Since I became the unofficial Girl Scout horse, though, I’ve racked up some pretty impressive experiences (a few of which, gentle reader, I’ve shared on this blog). Today, Beth Raynes is sharing some of her memories and I think she has me beat!
by Beth Raynes
We had planned to go to Virginia Beach to work on the Sea to Shore Interest Patch.
The girls did the planning and we were having a great time. Did the boat ride with experiments on ocean water and what is in the water. Got to see stingrays and dolphins. Had a great ride. Got back to the dock and on to dinner. We had not made reservations but pulled into a seafood restaurant. Well, parking was awful but they had valet parking, so we turned over the keys to the vans. Went inside and had a great meal. Watched beach volleyball and people strolling on the beach, and we had such a grand time at dinner with all of us sitting around the table. Didn’t matter it was almost 10 p.m. So we went out to get in the car and our valet brought the vans up. Of course, he was a hottie and the girls just stood and talked to him and of course, he was eating it up. I knew we should tip him so I tried to slip him the money. What I did and what the girls thought I did were two different things. I was slipping it in his hand; they thought I was putting it in his pants pocket. Of course, this male college student played it up. The girls from that year have not let me forget about “slipping” a tip. Now I make sure everyone knows what I am doing.
If you know me, you probably know I wear my heart on my sleeve. My troop girls know that I cannot make it through a ceremony of any kind without tears. At the end of this year’s CIT training at Sugar Hollow, we presented the girls with the poem, “Some Little One is Watching.” It talks about how little ones at camp will look up at them and follow them not just around camp but in what they do and say. So as I started reading the poem, I teared up and could not see the words and had to compose myself to finish. Then the next thing I knew they were all gone home and I was in the van with the two girls I was carpooling. Rayanna looked at me and said, “Ms. Beth, those girls whispered to me when you were tearing up, asking if you were alright and what was wrong. We told them that you are just emotional and if they were in our troop they would be used to it.”
I got to be a participant in the Our Chalet trip to France, Germany and Switzerland in June of 2012. We got into Lucerne and had some free time, so we decided to go down to the dining room to play spoons. Now if you have ever played spoons with me, you know I play fast, and LOVE this game. So eight of us were playing and all of a sudden a card went down on the floor. BUT I had four of a kind in my hand and I was reaching for a spoon. I got the spoon but fell off the chair. I have never heard so much hooting and laughing. Then realized it was me making the most noise. But the girls got a kick out of it and the other two adults just sort of shook their heads. The moral is, if you get a chance to go abroad with Girl Scouts, go !!!! Best trip ever YOLO!!!!!
When I became a trainer and went to the ACT conferences, there was a short little lady that always got into the theme of the conference and she also had her committee get into the theme with costumes. I always thought I could never follow in this lady’s footsteps but ……. I have been an oompaloompa, princess, Indian, pirate, Violet from Willie Wonka, Dumbledore, a nun …. I have more costume parts than I ever thought. I always thought I would feel silly and be self-conscious about it. But … when you see the girls get excited and they love that we do this , how can you not put yourself out there?
Last March we were on our way. We had planned, we had raised money and we were on our way to Savannah.
Sunshine, rain and snow was our traveling weather but by the time we got to Savannah, it was beautiful.
We hit the town running. The third day we did a tour of the town, had lunch, then were off to the dolphin boat ride. No one got sick, saw a dolphin … but to see and hear, “This is my first boat ride … this is the first time I have done this … this is cool ….” Makes it worth the time and effort we put into the trip. So off the boat and back to the town to go to the Pirates House to eat. By this time — with all the running, driving, counting, making sure everything is going off great (if you are a leader, you know these pressures) — it is getting to you. So I was the last one walking into the restaurant dining area that was set up for us. As I walked in and was so ready to sit and rest, this lady was standing there. As I looked at her I thought, “How did my aunt know we were here and decide to join us?” Then I got a better look and who do you think was there to join us??????? Jean Ann Hughes, our CEO. She and K Lanier had found out that Jean Ann had a conference in Savannah at the same time we would be there. K knew this and gave Jean Ann our schedule. So was I surprised when she was there to greet us and stay and have dinner with us. Has your troop got to eat a meal with the CEO? Special, yes … I felt very special that night and made sure the girls and parents knew how great this was.
As a leader I find you have to have FUN with the girls. I see girls I had in the troop in the past and they say, “Remember when we did ….” No, I am getting older and don’t remember, but if they do, then I am happy. They jar my memory, and it makes me happy that I have given them a great experience. I am at the point that some of my former girls are having children. I cheer for the girls and hope that their moms will be a leader. If they have boys I boooooo (no, I don’t) but am happy for them!!!! So what are some encouraging words I can leave with you? Don’t just be their leader … be a friend, be a mom, be a dad, but be there for them!