Thursday, March 18, 2010

An afternoon with the Girl Scouts

I don't remember wearing the classic green Girl Scout uniform, but I do vividly remember being a Brownie. My mom was one of the troop leaders and I really enjoyed spending time with my friends and working together. I vividly remember those little brown beanies, earning patches for my sash, Girl Scout cookies piled high in my orange living room and oh, that song! That infamous song. I wonder if they still sing it?

Make new friends
But Keep the Old
One is silver
And the other's Gold

I was flooded with these memories after recently being asked to teach a local Girl Scout Troop how to scrapbook. I opted to design a Brown Paper Bag Scrapbook for them. I chose this design to help them understand the basics of scrapbooking and walk away with a complete book of their own. Ahead of time, they decided on a Dog & Friendship combination theme. Can it get any better than that??? :0)

It was really fun designing a girly scrapbook with lots of little unique accents... like dogbone shaped journaling tags and best friend paper charms, inspired by a best friend necklace I once wore when I was close to their age.
The girls learned about matting, stamping, journaling, embellishing and paper piecing... and they were pros! I was genuinely impressed with their level of creativity and willingness to try something new. When they were worried about "messing up" or something didn't quite turn out they way they thought, I asked them to see this as a "happy accident." (An idea someone once shared with me). I showed them one of my own layouts, where I accidentally ripped my cardstock and explained how this one tear wound up inspiring a complete distressed transformation to my original layout idea. To this day, it is one of my favorite layouts!

So here is a photo of their finsihed projects:

My sample is in the center, with the Poodle on the cover. Take a look at how the girls made thier books their own! Not one of them copied my design entirely... I was pleasantly surprised. I remember being ten and how important it felt to fit in. Yet these girls were confident enough to be different from each other, and from me! It made my heart full.

I am lucky to be part of an amazing circle of friends who share scrapbooking as a hobby. Scrapbooking has been a way for us to break away for our busy lives and reconnect with each other and reflect on all of our special moments in between carpools and cooking dinner. And while these young girls were scrapbooking, I was transported back in time for a moment. I could see myself sitting around with my girlfriends. And while I didn't know any of them at age ten, I could easily envision us gathered around a table just like theirs...talking about things just like them. I was struck by how, even at the age of ten, this process of gathering and being creative together seemed to provide a forum for them to talk about things that were on their minds... a recent Health test, family life, someone who bothered them at school, and who they hoped would win American Idol.

My afternoon spent with the Girl Scouts was wonderful, and an experience that I will never forget...scout's honor! :0)

If you, or someone you know, is interested in having me lead a scrapbooking group event or birthday party, please feel free to contact me at or 718-614-4864.

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