Archive for June, 2010

New-Found Confidence Through Cub Scouting

Before embarking on a new activity, as a parent I always ask myself, “What is my purpose or goal for enlisting our child in the activity?”  Last fall Cub Scouting became an option for Pickle.  And we asked the question.  What do we want Pickle to gain from Cub Scouting?  Of course, we want all of our boys to be successful, caring individuals who have self-worth.  Over and above this we want them to have a trait neither my hubby or I feel we had…Confidence.

Fast forward 9 months…Last week, Cub Scout Camp 2010  (Click here to read more about our Cub Scouting journey.)

As leaders, two of us took Monday, Wednesday and Thursday.   Others filled in during Tues. and Fri. as they could. There were 21 boys. Ten from our Pack and 11 from another who couldn’t have cared less who we were or that they should even attempt to respect us.

***VERY IMPORTANT TIP & NOTE TO SELF: Avoid walking on Mon. if at all possible.***

I’m a little dizzy from Mon. & reeling from all of the Mack trucks that ran over

Pickel Shooting Archery

me.   (SIDENOTE:  Two years ago I thought I’d try substitute teaching.  Due to a breast-feeding schedule – God’s way of saving me some embarrassment – I was never able to go in but my husband always said they’d eat me alive if I did.)  As of last Monday, he was officially 100% correct!

If I’m still dizzy now, 8 days later, imagine how I felt last Tue.  Well, let’s not.   I spoke with the mom who went on Tues. and learned that the boys all got into trouble during archery and air gun rifle.  This pushed me over the edge and somehow on Wed. morning I emerged as Hilter.  We had a fantastic time in the sports station as each Scout would go through an obstacle course.  Then it was archery time.  Prior to leaving the Sports area I attempted to line the boys up single file.  This

Here is is shooting in the airgun range. He had all week to shoot a total of 35 pts. & receive his badge. On the first day, he shot 47 pts.

bombed like a flying bird pooping through the air.  It also charged my temper.  As I arrived at the archery area I went to the head instructor and told him we are implementing a ‘zero tolerance rule,’ – listen, be quiet and sit patiently or you’ll sit out for the rest of the day.  The younger boys ‘got it,’ except for the ADA child.  The older boys looked at me like ‘whatever lady! We are in charge here!’  Even so, they did well through archery.  Then came airgun – the rule was re-explained but this time they tested it & two boys ended up sitting out.

There was an indifference…do we like her or do we respect her??  As the day went on I tried to bond with a couple of the boys signing songs like “I don’t know what you’ve been told, but Girl Scout cookies taste like mold!” and helping them bait their hooks at fishing.  On Thurs., I worked to build more rapport.  They became more attentive to the rules which led to more fun.  At the end of the day, as we were marching in the single file row I failed to create on Mon., I mentioned to a couple of the boys that I wouldn’t be there on Fri…to my surprise they were disappointed.  On Fri., watergun day, I went to pick Pickle up.  One of the older boys was trying to shoot a boy who was standing in front of me.  The boy in front moved and I became the hit target.  The look on his face was something I’ve dreamed of seeing on my own boys’ face.  His face went from smiling to scared and he quickly apologized, stumbling over his own words.  I said it was alright and we hi-fived.  It was a new-found confidence that Cub Scouting gave an unintended person…ME!

The Law of the Pack – Our Cub Scouting Journey

Before embarking on a new activity, as a parent I ask myself, “What is my purpose or goal for enlisting our child in the activity?”  Last fall Cub Scouting

Pickle receiving his Tiger Cub badge during the cross-over ceremony to the Wolf den.

became an option for Pickle.  And we asked the question.  What do we want Pickle to gain from Cub Scouting?  Of course, we want all of our boys to be successful, caring individuals who have self-worth.  Over and above this we want them to have a trait neither my hubby or I feel we had…Confidence.

Did you know there have been numerous Presidents, CEO’s, Military commissioners, actors, athletes, etc… who began as Scouts?  Who doesn’t want their kid to be successful? Sign him up Scotty!

Our Cub Scouting experience started off on a rough step.  Our den leader had no clue what she was doing, lacked reliability, couldn’t connect with our kids and ultimately quit three weeks before our boys were to ‘cross-over’ to the Wolf den.   The parents all decided we would re-group and each take on a responsibility.  No problem we’ve got it covered.  We sat down to plan out what was left to do.   We had spent 6 months completing only 5 of the 15.  AHAHAH!  Chaos ensued.  How are we possibly going to complete 10 things in 3 wks when it took 6 months to do 5??  Our team stepped up to the plate.  It was a whirlwind but we had a blast and the kids got to do some pretty cool

Pickle on the green screen during TV station tour.

things…Help produce a commercial at a local TV station, then sat in on the evening news and then were surprised when they put us all on TV!  We took  all of the kids to my in-laws to fulfill a dairy/food activity, went on a hike and picked up trash.  Toured a police department, had their fingerprinting

Big brother can't have all the fun. Here is Willis attempting to get himself on the tv screen...cow boots, wranglers and all!

Cub Scouts learn how to lift fingerprints from the mock crime scene during our tour of the police station.

completed and solved a make-shift crime…that was SUPER cool!

While all of this was taking place three of us emerged as the Den leaders, including myself.  Then news came that our Pack leader was leaving the Pack since her youngest son was moving on to the Boy Scouts and she would be taking on responsibilities there.  Well, one of the three of our Den leaders decided to take on the job.  The other took on an Assistant Pack Leader position…and here I am.  I’m excited and ready for the task!

Update…We just completed Cub Scout Camp 2010.  Click here for ‘the rest of the story.’

Boys and mud

These are two words that go hand in hand around The Magic FarmHouse.  If there’s mud, my boys will find it.  Especially Willis.  When he was just about two we caught him preparing to eat an earthworm.  Ick!  Although he didn’t try to eat a worm, the other day he did find some mud.  It started out as a trip to the shed to show the new calf to their cousins.

Down to the shed...

Here’s a pic of the new calf.  He looks really cute but don’t let that fool you.  Although he is a bucket calf and has been weaned from the bottle, he has a strong desire to suck (not unusual).  Entering the pen without jeans is not recommended. The boys have started calling him Coo-Coo Brains.

Willis and "Coo-Coo brains"

Anyway, after introducing Coo-Coo Brains the boys wanted to chase the ducks up to the pool for a little swim.  This is where the mud comes into today’s story.  We got the ducks to the pool and Willis I guess became bored and decided to entertain himself.

Camo, Mac and BB going for a swim.

Camo, Mac and BB going for a swim.

Caught! Mud handed!

This was only the beginning and due to a commitment to my baby I was unable to catch anymore shots of the Mud Fest.   I was able to snap a portion of the cleanup.

Redneck washing machine...

Redneck washing machine.

All clean?!

Clothes off at the door boy!

Does this cake have any peanuts?

We all were told time and time again to watch our pronunciation and to be sure and enunciate our sounds correctly.  I have learned that this is very important, especially when you have a child who tends to miss his ‘T’s’ and has a peanut allergy.

Why you ask? Let me tell you a little story.  We were recently at a birthday party for a cousin’s little boy.   The party was going great! The kids played, ate a little, started a water fight met some new friends and then came cake time.  Willis, our child with peanut, almond and pecan, allergies, got into line and things looked great!  My hubby’s cousin was serving the cake when Willis asked, “Does this cake have any peanuts in it?” I was SOOO proud to hear he asked on his own.  He’s only 4 after all.  And, then the cousin’s face showed shock and dismay.  As he looked around aimlessly he asked “You want what now?”  The problem you ask?  Willis innocently dropped his ‘T’ when saying the word ‘peanuts.’  Say it to yourself.  Yep, that’s right.  Fortunately, someone heard what was happening and jumped in to explain the peanut allergy.  Lesson learned…work on Willis’ ‘T’s’ over summer break.  The end.

Wow! Stop the lawn mower! REALLY!

Who knew we were all sitting on herbal goldmines!?!  I sat down to read my newest copy of ‘Turkey Country’ the NWTF’s (National Wild Turkey Federation) member magazine and came across an article that blew my socks off.  It talked about a plant that many pay big dollars to eradicate from their lawns.  Being frugal and cheap we at The MagicFarmHouse just mow them over and pray they never return.  Until now.

I gasped as I read all of the common ailments it may cure or relieve…

  • Reduces hypertension
  • Cures anemia (I’m chronically anemic)
  • Improves night vision
  • Acts as a mild diuretic
  • Improves liver and gallbladder function
  • Detoxifies the body
  • Mitigate mild constipation and other digestive issues (as a Crohn’s/Ulcerative colitis and IBS sufferer my colon was kicking me in the butt)
  • Clears skin problems including acne, eczema, warts, fungal infections and psoriasis
  • Eases arthritis
  • Stabilizes mood (I could use that all the time!)

What is this plant?  DANDELIONS! I know I still can’t believe it.  The author Lisa Densmore explains in the article that “It turns out the weed I tried in vain to eradicate is a nutritious herb, valued in Europe and the sub-Indian continent for myriad medicinal uses.”  Who knew?  Here’s one of the recipes they included with the article.  Unfortunately, since all of our dandelions are gone now (they usually dominate during the early spring), I haven’t had an opportunity to make any of their recipes.  I can’t wait to try them though!

Dandelion Blossom Cake


  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup honey
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup dandelion petals
  • 1 cup crushed pineapple, drained
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped (we will exclude this since we have a son with nut allergies)
  • 1/2 cup dried sweetened coconut (same as with the pecans)

Happy dandelion hunting!