Sunday, February 24, 2013

Oh the Places You'll Go!

I am finally getting this post up and I apologize for it taking so long. This post will be all about Sparks Friendship Camp- the planning, the preparation, and the camp itself. I will put links to some of the ideas I had on the words so you can see them too! This is going to be a long one so sit back, relax, and enjoy!

I kind of came into the camp with a late start- the original organizers weren't able to carry out the camp and area did not want it to be cancelled so I agreed that I would take over and plan the camp. I have always wanted to do a Dr. Seuss themed camp and this was my chance! I picked a theme, wrote up an information sheet and it began!

The camp filled up very quickly and we had 35 girls, then 36, then 37- I did not want to go any higher than that because the thought of 50 sparks scared me a little bit... Because I was still on Christmas Break I got started right away.  

I am a big fan of being completely immersed into a theme and I wanted to get that across to the girls- especially with the fun of Dr. Seuss! I really like little details and I wanted to decorate the lodge to look like the girls stepped into a Seuss book. I made Truffula Trees from "The Lorax" with tissue paper pom poms and streamers and hung them up around the lodge.

What Dr. Seuss camp would be complete without a Grinch?! I wanted to have a special way for the girls to get their Treasure Hunt prizes and I thought it would be fun to have a pinata-esque Grinch hanging by the fireplace. I am very proud of my Grinch. :)
I knew that with a camp of this size it would be very important to be organized throughout the entire event so I went out to camp the day before to get set up. I was proud of myself because I was very organized and the camp went very smoothly. I lined up everything and labeled the crafts and activities by when they were happening and what we needed. I will be doing this for every camp I do from now on.

Here is the bulletin board with our schedule, list of participants, group leaders, and the chore chart.

Here is my bunktag. All of the girls had their names on their bunks with their group symbols- the leaders were all Cat in the Hat hats!


 When the girls arrived at camp we immediately got into program and played some getting to know you games, read some stories, and went to bed.

I am going to go out of order a little bit now and divide the activities by sections. First is crafts- one of my favourite things about Girl Guides!
The Dr. Seuss story "Daisy Head Mayzie" is all about a little girl who grows a flower out of the top of her head. When I heard about this story I knew we had to make headbands with daisies on them! They all ended up so different and they were so cute!



I spend a lot of time on Pinterest- more than I probably should- but it was super helpful for planning this camp. I saw this craft, making
Thing 1 and Thing 2 handprints and I knew we just had to do them! The girls listed this craft as their favourite one we did.

This was the only craft we did that was not related to Dr. Seuss but I thought it would be important to have a keepsake like a picture frame for the girls to take home. They were, as always, very creative! 

Saturday evening we got the girls in their pajamas and did one more craft- Green Eggs and Ham bracelets! They were very cute!
This last craft was supposed to be a camp hat craft for the girls to do, but they were just too tired at the end of the night so I did them and put them in their "goodie bags" to take home. I didn't take a picture of mine for whatever reason but this is the clover from Horton Hears a Who.
 Congratulations! You are halfway through the post! This is definitely the longest post I have ever done!

This next session will mostly be pictures of the activities we did starting with this beautiful picture I took on our morning hike. It was lightly snowing and absolutely peaceful!
Say cheese! After being outside for a few hours the girls were still smiling because the weather was so nice and they were all bundled up in their snowsuits ready to play!

This is my favourite picture from the weekend even if it is a little bit out of focus because it shows such happiness. The girls were just hanging out in their bunks talking and relaxing and they were planning to have a secret slumber party when all the leaders went to sleep (yeah right!). It was so neat to see them making these friendships.

One of the highlights was going on a Treasure Hunt with the Lorax. We tromped through the woods and did little tasks like finding animal tracks, finding the safest place for a mouse to sleep in the winter, and identifying different plants. It was a lot of fun and the kids were so excited to try and find the Lorax!

When we got back to the lodge the girls came across a very interesting tree that we did not see any where else on our hike- a Jello Tree! The looks on the girls' faces were priceless, especially when they saw the hat of a certain cat who must have left the tree for them to find. :) 

The thought of having 30 Sparks in the snow and dark around a giant campfire was a little bit too nerve wracking so I thought we would do an inside sing a long type campfire inside with these awesome glow sticks! At the end of our singing the girls each got to take a piece of the campfire with them to bed which was very cool. I got to take some of it too!

I think the fact we had that this many smiling Sparks on Sunday morning is pretty impressive. :) They are all so cute and considering that less than forty-eight hours earlier very few of them knew each other they all look like pretty good friends! 

I love the look of all the luggage piled up in the snow. I don't know why I just think it looks cool!

And we were on our way home! It was such an amazing experience and I am happy I got to meet all of the little Sparks and my amazing co-leaders! 

Thanks for reading this insanely long post!
Until next time.

World Thinking Day 2013!

On Tuesday February 19 my district and our neighbouring district had a celebration at a local church and I was asked to give a little speech about what I have been able to do because of Girl Guides. I had no problem writing it and the hardest part was keeping it down to 5 minutes! Here is a video of it if you would like to hear what I had to say...

 The Rangers of the District completely planned the event and they wanted to have a special project at the end of the event. One of the service projects members in our area are working on is making quilts to give to organizations like the SPCA, hospitals, seniors' centres etc. The Rangers got each unit to come up with a word that represented the world they want for girls- the theme of the ceremony. My little Sparks came up with the word "hope" which I thought was very cool.
 On real Thinking Day (Friday February 22) I joined the rest of my area at West Edmonton Mall where we had a singing celebration at exactly 7:22 PM. We started with the song "One Voice" which made me cry because that song is so beautiful and was sung beautifully. Next we did my favourite Guiding song of all time "On My Honour" which is what the video below shows. We finished off the singing part with Happy Birthday to Alberta Girl Guides and Taps.
After the singing most of the girls headed to Galaxyland for an exclusive event just for Girl Guides! I was not able to go because I was pretty sick the night before, but I heard it was a lot of fun!  

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

My Life in Pictures: January!

Hello! I got the idea for this post a while back for all of the little things that I have pictures of but are not substantial enough to have a full post dedicated to them. So every month I will post a little bit about my month with pictures to keep a memory for me and share a bit about my life with you! Enjoy!

I started off the month by writing out receipts for my district's additional registration fees. It made quite a mess, but it didn't take as long as I thought it would so that was a bonus!

One of my fellow Spark leaders is a scientist so she has been leading a lot of science activities so the girls will complete their Exploring and Experimenting keeper. This was my favourite activity the girls did- Sparkly Volcanoes! Take baking soda, vinegar, soap, food colouring, and of course glitter and voila you get pictures like this. Priceless!

We also made these beauties- imaginary animals out of play dough and we let them raid the craft supplies bin. They turned out pretty fantastic and the girls loved making them!

My Oriental Trading order came in for Sparks Friendship Camp and I got so excited I had to line it all up and take pictures. :)

I went out to camp with my mom and sister's Guide group and it was a blast! Here is a picture of Heather buried in snow- courtesy of her Guides.

We were so lucky to have such beautiful weather out at camp we got some snowshoeing in and I got to wear my sunglasses. I love wearing sunglasses in winter!

We made peanut butter, bird seed, and pinecone bird feeders which was a messy, but fun craft.

I even got a chance to work on Spark Friendship Camp stuff! These are the tufts of Truffala Trees from the Lorax. Stay tuned to see what happens to them!

These are the highlights of my January- what were some of yours? Finally here is a picture of my kitten because he is so darn cute!