This week my AHG scouts joined the Bear and Tiger Cub Scouts on a visit to our local police station. The police officers did a wonderful job showing them the facility and telling about their jobs, and all of my kids said that they really enjoyed the tour.
The officers showed the kids the room where they interview people and showed them all of the equipment that they carry around with them all day long. They then showed the kids the police cars, and, of course, that was a highlight for all of the scouts. After all, who doesn’t enjoy sirens and flashing lights?!
The next stop was the dispatch center where the scouts got to see where 911 calls come in. The officers described appropriate and inappropriate use of 911, which is important for kids to know.
The jailer gave the kids quite a tour of the jail. They got to see the holding cells as well as the different levels of security cells. They saw the kitchen and the library as well and took a peek at how prisoners visit their guests through a little window.
My kids all agree that the jail is an isolated, boring, and unattractive place. On the way home, though, we discussed why they are needed and why we so appreciate and respect the police. It was a good experience for all.
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We have made it through our first month of American Heritage Girls, and I must say that the girls and I are absolutely loving it!
We are continuing to work on the membership badge. As the girls are learning the different requirements, we are assembling a lap book that will pretty much summarize everything they are learning. It will be really neat when it is finished, and I will have the girls share that in a few weeks.
We are also still working on the 7 C’s of History merit badge. A highlight of this for Cosette was making a Noah puppet that she used to put together a newscast about the Worldwide Flood described in Genesis. Last week we watched a video tour of the Creation Museum, and both of the girls think that would be fun to visit sometime in the future.
The girls have especially been enjoying working on the sewing merit badge with Grandma. She has helped them do all kinds of things like sewing on buttons, doing some basic hand stitching, learning about the parts of the sewing machine, etc. They each have tried the sewing machine a little and are looking forward to working with that more. They are making pin cushions using hand sewing, and they have other projects that they will be working on in the coming weeks.
Community service is an important focus in American Heritage Girls. Towards that end, the girls have been diligent helpers when we have been cleaning the church. I have been pleased at their enthusiasm and positive attitudes–and they really have worked very hard. Their main jobs have been helping to clean the bathrooms and using the canister vacuum to clean the pews and stairs. It is so important for everyone to learn to give back, and I’m glad that AHG encourages this.
So, we are busily working away on requirements. I cannot recommend AHG highly enough. It has been well worth the time and money to be involved.
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As I wrote in an earlier entry, my Mom is helping my girls learn to do a little sewing for American Heritage Girls. Today she came over again and showed them some basic hand sewing stitches, and the girls really took to it! In fact, this afternoon, they asked if they could practice some more, and they were both busy for several hours!
We did have a tearful moment, however. Cosette dropped her needle on the floor and couldn’t find it. She fretted while she diligently searched. I told her I could get her another needle, but she said, “This is the one GRANDMA gave me! I have to find IT!” Well, Luke came to the rescue. He said, “I know! I’ll get my metal detector!”
What a great idea! What makes this really funny is that even though we’ve had that detector since Luke’s birthday in April, we didn’t get it out to try until this morning!
So, Luke went to work, searching the carpet, and it wasn’t very long until we heard “beep, beep, beep,” and Cosette shouted, “I found it! There it is!” So, Luke was a hero, and the metal detector is now the coolest item in this house! :)
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Wow, this has been a hectic week! It seems like we’ve been running helter-skelter non-stop since last Friday! By the time Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts, and American Heritage Girls all get going, our evenings are pretty full.
The girls are continuing to enjoy American Heritage Girls. John and Brock went to a Boy Scout camp this weekend, while Luke went to a Cub Scout day camp on Saturday, so the girls and I had a special American Heritage Girls weekend too! We spent some time working on a lapbook that we are assembling as we are learning the requirements for the Joining Badge. For the 7 C’s of History badge, Cosette designed a costume for one of our VBS puppets to turn it into a Noah puppet that she will use for her news interview with Noah about the world-wide flood. Kara is working on making pictures for each of the 7 days of creation. My Mom came over on Saturday morning to work with the girls on their sewing badge requirements. She had samples of many different kinds of fabric for the girls to learn about. They mounted the different samples on cardstock and labeled them too. Kara has been very fabric-conscious ever since. She notices what clothes are made of and looks at them closely to see if they are woven or knit, printed, etc.
When Dan and the boys came home from their camping activities, the girls helped set up the tents in the backyard so they could sleep outside too. This has actually gone on all week–different kids on different nights. We’ve had perfect weather for it, except for last night when Dan and Brock got rained out!
So, we never lack for things to do! LOL! The kids’ school projects are getting in full gear as well. John is beginning his science project, which will be about antennas and how they affect Wi-Fi signals. Brock is starting on his 6th grade map project, and Luke is beginning the 3rd grade animal notebook. Hmm…..I wonder what I’m going to be doing????? :)
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Several weeks ago, I mentioned that the Prairie Family had some exciting news about American Heritage Girls. At that time I didn’t have all of the information to make an informed blog post, but now I do, so I am officially announcing that our family is one of the newest Trailblazer families with American Heritage Girls!
I have tried different programs over the years with the girls, but I was drawn to American Heritage Girls from the very beginning because of their solid, Biblical values. When I first looked at the group, however, they only worked through chartered troops, and there were none anywhere near where we live. I was excited to learn through one of my scouting Yahoo groups during the early summer months that AHG had started a Trailblazer program, which is similar to the Boy Scout’s Lone Scout program. Families who live in isolated areas can now apply to be considered for this program. We filled out the necessary forms and were accepted, and the girls were THRILLED!
AHG has already been so helpful as we are getting started, and their program is top-notch. We feel blessed to be able to participate in this group, and plan on being involved for the long-term.
Right now, the girls and I are working through the membership badge requirements, and we are starting a couple of merit badges too. My plan is to work on one “academic-type” badge and one “activity-type” badge at the same time, so we will have variety in our activities. We aren’t going to hurry through the requirements, but plan on spending time to do a quality and thorough job on each step. The girls helped me pick out which badges they wanted to work on first. We are going to do the 7 C’s of History badge from the Heritage Frontier and the Sewing badge from the Family Living Frontier. Cosette has wanted to learn how to sew for a long, long time, and my Mom has graciously agreed to help us with the requirements for that badge.
So, we are pretty excited about this whole thing. We’re just in the beginning stages of getting started, but we are having fun already. If anyone is interested in learning more about the American Heritage Girls Trailblazer program, please don’t hesitate to ask, and I’ll point you in the right direction! In the mean time, I plan on making regular entries to share what the girls are doing.
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This summer I have been helping Brock, Cosette, and Luke work through their respective P.R.A.Y. program levels to get their religious emblems for Boy Scouts, Cub Scouts, and American Heritage Girls. We finished just in time! We are getting ready to start school on Wednesday, and we just got everything signed for the awards this past Sunday!
Luke and Cosette completed the God and Me level. This study is a basic overview of some of the foundational Christian truths including Creation, the life of Christ, and the story of the Good Shepherd. Together we made the GAMEbox (God and Me Exploring Box) that included several homemade games to review the lessons that we learned.
Brock just completed the God and Family level. This is a very unique study that involves crafting a paper pizza to symbolize God’s plan to strengthen families. Each of the parts of the pizza represent different areas: The crust equates to the foundation of our Christian life built on Jesus Christ; the sauce represents the family’s unique heritage; the toppings represent the individual members of the family and how they are specially gifted; the cheese represents the 10 commandments and other rules that hold the family together; baking the pizza symbolizes learning to use tools of the faith to get through difficulties; and sharing the pizza encourages the student to explore ways to share his faith. Brock enjoyed making the pizza even though crafting is not exactly his favorite thing to do! :)
Hopefully we will be able to get the medals ordered pretty soon so we can have a presentation ceremony at church. Then it won’t be long before we’re ready to start in on more P.R.A.Y. studies!
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Yesterday I briefly mentioned that in a few weeks I will have an exciting announcement to make regarding the Prairie Family and American Heritage Girls. The details are still in the works, so even though I’m bursting with excitement about this announcement, I will bite my tongue and not reveal too much! :)
That being said, I want my readers to be introduced to this wonderful organization, so I want to share a few links with you.
First, here is a link to the American Heritage Girls website: http://www.ahgonline.org
Today I also found an interview the Dr. James Dobson did with the founders of American Heritage Girls on his program, Family Talk. There were two segments dated May 17, 18 2010. This broadcast is available to listen to online, and gives a good flavor of what American Heritage Girls is all about. Here are the links:
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Recently, I helped Luke and Cosette complete the God and Me curriculum, so they can get the religious emblems for Cub Scouts and American Heritage Girls. **Yes, I said American Heritage Girls. I have good news to share in a few weeks about that! :) ** This was a fun study that incorporated a lot of basic teachings of Christianity.
Anyway, one of the suggested activities in God and Me is to make and use a “family prayer rock.” Now, I thought that sounded kind of silly, but both of the kids thought it sounded fun, so we gave it a try. First we located an appropriate specimen, and then we used our creative skills to make it cute. Then it was time to put it to use. The way it works is the person who has the rock chooses a family member to remember specially in prayer. Then they are to secretly hide the rock for that person to find so they will know that they have been lifted up before the throne of God. Then it is their turn to hide the rock, and on it goes.
At first we were going to do this for a week like the book said, but we have found it to be such a good reminder to pray, that we have kept it going now for longer than a month. Who knows how long it will keep being passed around?! I must admit that my heart smiles when I find that silly rock hidden for me, and that I have fun passing it on. More importantly, though, it has focused our attention on praying for each other, and that has been great!
So, this little guy has been a simple addition to the Prairie Family house that serves a great purpose!
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