Thursday, May 28, 2015

Fairies, Fires, and Fun!

It is a tradition in my unit to have a camp on the May long weekend and have the grade sixes come out on Friday and the plan their own camp from Friday night to late Saturday afternoon to help them complete their Experienced Camper badge. So far it has worked really well and the first and second year girls are already excited to have their own camp. 

The girls cooked their own meals, we had french toast for breakfast cooked on the camp stove, yum! 

We set up a "Jello Tree" with the grade sixes for the other girls when they came out on Saturday afternoon. This idea is always a hit, I have done a post on the Jello Tree before here

I thought these mushrooms hiding in the grass were really cool so I had to take a picture (or ten)! 

Does this not look like the perfect s'more ever!?  

We were so glad there was no fire ban when we were out at camp. The girls couldn't wait to cook over it. 

This is one of my favourite pictures I have ever taken because it is so pretty and of one of my favourite places. It is even my Facebook cover photo! 

We have painted outhouses at our camp and this is the latest addition... a Tardis from Doctor Who! Exterminate, exterminate... :) 

I love being outside in the spring!

These rubber feet were so cool for identifying and creating tracks in the sand. They are such a cool thing to use out at the nature centre!

These birds were everywhere and they are so loud!  

A pretty robin! 

One of the girls using the microscope to look at some of the lake water for little critters. We are so lucky to have access to the nature centre! 

Another flower shot... 

In one of the adirondacks there was a bird's nest, Many of the guides has never seen a nest before and were pretty excited!

Inside the nest was a robin's egg! Don't worry, we were very respectful of it; no one touched it and I took a picture of the inside so the girls could see. 

Here is a great example of one of the nature crowns made at camp that I learned about at the Camping Advisers Workshop... such a good idea- I will use it forever! Thank you Tiger!!

One of the crafts we did was a mini chalkboard using a dollar store burner cover, some chalkboard paint, and some washi tape! They followed my rules of a cool, functional craft and the girls loved them! 

We went on a night hike and came across these amazing fairy doors at the bases of several trees in the forest. The girls LOVED them, but I think I loved them even more... magic is everywhere! :) 

I am so happy with this unit this year, they are a great group of girls! The camp was so much fun and even though we were exhausted by the end of it I think it was a very successful camp!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Camping Advisers Workshop 2015

I attended my last (for a while anyways) Camping Advisers Workshop a few weeks ago and I wanted to share what I learned and loved about the weekend. This is one of my favourite events of the year and it was so much fun!

I love the view out at the camp, it is so beautiful especially in the mornings! 

One of the sessions of the weekend was all about outdoor cooking. Most of the recipes were amazing and I even got some non-camping cooking tips!

The recipe my group was in charge of was quesadilla with cheese, tomato, peppers, black beans, and corn. They were so good and I will be making quesadilla like that from now on!

We made oatmeal cookies with pie filling in a box oven that were amazing!

Also in the box oven we made an apple dish with butter, sugar, marshmallows, and raisins. It was so good!

This was done on a BBQ and was pretty good, cheese, cauliflower, and broccoli. Yum!

One of the things I love about the workshop is the craft round robin that happens throughout the weekend whenever you have some extra time. These are some fancy fire starters that use potpourri covered in wax in the paper ketchup containers from fast food places. They are really cute and could even be given as a gift! 

This craft is really easy to do and the end result looks pretty impressive. First you take some rocks and paint on a thick coat, pastel paints work the best. 

Next you stamp on some animal tracks with ink onto white tissue paper and Mod Podge them onto the painted rocks. Once they dry you have a great set of animal tracks to use for a game or just for decoration. 

This camp is just so beautiful! 

Just a couple of nature shots of some interesting things I found on one of the walking programs.

One of the last remnants of winter. I think it is safe to say that spring is finally here! 

This is one idea that I will definitely bring back to my unit, a nature bits crown that is a piece of poster paper with some double sided tape that you stick interesting bits to as you are walking through the woods. I love this idea! 

This is another idea that I absolutely love and it is so simple to do at the unit level. It is called a journey stick and what you do is take along some string and every time you see something interesting or something you want to remember you tie it on to the stick. For example on our walk I saw a really interesting red barked bush so I put the red string on, then I saw some ducks (yellow string), I saw the first green leaf of the year (green string), I tripped and almost fell over a tree root (purple string...) and then I saw a really cool cloud that reminded me of cotton candy (pink string). It is a really cool way to document a hike and gives the kids who maybe don't like hiking so much something to keep them occupied.

Here is my footprint from the Hug a Tree program presentation. I thought it was a great idea! 

Here is a tarp snakes and ladders game I made in one of the sessions. If you want to see a full post about it click here

Here is my final plate of fire starters and track rocks. I am really pleased with how they all turned out. 

The best part of the weekend was campfire! It is the coolest place to have it and I love being at a campfire with so much experience that everyone knows the words to all of the songs we are singing! 

A final sunrise and a farewell to being a camping adviser, it has been a great ride and I look forward to starting new adventures in Guiding.