Monday, September 13, 2010

Brownie Girl Scouts and me

It was our first meeting, with the parents (moms) filling out forms, and writing checks and the girls cautiously getting to know each other, seeing a few familiar faces. No fewer than forty girls because we are combining the financial and managerial functions of both a brownie troop and a daisy troop. I get to be treasurer, so that will be interesting, and more of a role than I have had as a mom in the past. As I look at all these girls, I wonder how they are going to learn about each other and grow closer as friends. I know on the first day of daisies last year, it looked hopelessly confused, with many shy girls, and I figured this would never form one unit or that half the girls would drop out. And I was glad to be totally wrong about it. The same ten girls came almost every week, and they mostly came to the weekend group events, and they all learned each other's names and personalities, and it worked great, even for my shy girl. So it is with a new hope that I look at all these girls, some shy, some loud, some open, some nervous, that we can know all of them, appreciate all of them, and get them to bond with each other. I am not sure how the dynamics of friendship will work out. With my daughter being a little older, she has started to care more about her friends and wants to be with them more. I hope she will reconnect with old friends, but I hope she finds some new ones too. Without that connection, there is no point to scouts.
The brownie troop is allowed to have up to thirty-five or forty girls. If you think about it, that is double the current classroom size. And lest you think its not the same concept, oh wrong, we are here to teach them things! At least there are two leaders, but I sure hope there are moms who are willing to stay and help some! Of course I will, as I did last year. The moms who hang around and jump in to help with crafts and games make things run so much more smoothly.
We have a very full schedule already too - right up to February already. We are going camping, and more than once! Sometimes, I don't like being tied down to a schedule or having to stay close to home as this will require. However, I want my daughter to have stability and a routine that will ground her with these new friends.
Of course, I am biased. I don't want her to miss a single meeting, and definitely not any event. I want her to experience it all. That may just not be realistic. I doubt that the all the girls that came tonight will make it to a majority of the meetings. Particularly in brownies, there always seem to be drop-outs. I worry that my daughter will want to drop out, particularly if she feels on the outs of a clique or if one person makes her angry. I have to remember that it is okay if not all the girls come every time, and that its okay if my girl doesn't make it sometimes. Its just that I know how much they are missing when they skip. Each meeting brings the girls closer, each activity enriches the bond, each big event becomes a legend in their share memory. They don't realize at their age, but I see it at mine. That is why I am so pro-scout. I root for anything that encourages friendships that can deepen by shared events and experiences. Its the reason why girlfriends weekends (and trips) work so well for me and my friends. We reconnect and remember all the things that make us friends in the first place. That plus experiencing a new setting together enhance our connection and build memories. And the laughter, its essential!
I look forward to it. I am awed by the potential...but I will take it one meeting at a time.

Friday, September 3, 2010

the results are in

The results are in and ...
we are gifted!
Okay, I say 'we' but mean my daughter of course. But you have to admit, it is something you can take credit for at least a little...
Our excellent combination of genes has lead to this culmination of perfection...yes, going overboard now.
Actually, the even better news is that dear daughter is being kept busier in school and has less time to be bored. And Tuesday she starts going to enrichment math/science that will challenge her even more. So while she does complain about the amount of homework, she has been relatively quiet on the amount of classwork. And I have had the first look at some of the work she has been doing in class, and it is awesome! It is a lot more challenging than last year's work already, and she is meeting that challenge (so obviously she is listening a little better in class, too!)
Good year for us!