Monday, February 7, 2011

Girl Scouts, It's More Than Just Cookies!

When I was in Elementary School, I was in Girl Scouts. I absolutely loved it and made lots of friends. Those friends and I have lost touch and reconnected many times over the years but they really are the kind of women who I know would be there if I ever needed anything.

Losing my mom early in life taught me that having these types of women around me is vital.

When Heidi asked to join Girl Scouts, I was beyond excited! In addition to the lifelong relationships, many other life skills are fostered. This was very apparent this weekend.

Heidi’s weekend started out with a dance at the Middle School. The dance was for area Troops and was hosted by two older Troops. They do this every year and seem to have wonderful success. The girls who organize this event do all the leg work themselves. There were parents there “just in case” but the girls were responsible for taking tickets, serving food, keeping supplies for the craft stocked, decorating, and clean up. I have to say, they did a fantastic job!

There were about 200 girls in attendance and even though I saw a few tears from other girls, they all appeared to have a fantastic time. It was a night of bonding with not only their troop but other troops as well. Everyone was disappointed when 8 pm rolled around and they had to head home.

Saturday brought Cookie Go Day, the day to officially begin selling Girl Scout Cookies.

Heidi’s troop set a per girl goal of 100 boxes. If the troop sells 1200 boxes, the girls will get a pizza party. Some of the girls were worried about this because they have sisters in Girls Scouts so they are competing with them. Heidi became aware of this decided to step it up and sell more than 100, setting her personal goal at 105.

As of noon on Sunday, 36 hours after Go Time, she had sold 91 boxes and is well on her way to exceed her goal.

Sunday afternoon, we went out to sell to the neighbors. We had little luck as most people had already headed out for their Super Bowl Parties but we did find one family home.

Heidi knocked on the door and her friend Amanda answered. We had practiced what she should say, over and over again. She had it down.

But when Amanda opened the door, Heidi froze. She couldn’t even remember her name, let alone her speech! So, I gently encouraged her and then spoke for her. They ordered two boxes and I had to remind her to say Thank You.

At that point, I was thankful no one else answered their door. And I now realize we should have practiced by having her give her sales pitch at her Grandparents door instead of at brunch on Sunday.

It had not occurred to me how much she will learn from selling cookies. Not only about fundraising but about herself, her comfort zone, and her need to occasionally step outside of it.

My hope for Heidi is that she gets as much from Girl Scouts as I did. Lifelong relationships and important life skills.

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