November 2008 Archives

Now through December 13, SouthernLINC Wireless is supporting Any Soldier, Inc. The organization facilitates a connection between civilians and soldiers who are serving in dangerous overseas deployments, and it currently helps more than 100,000 active duty and reservists in all U.S. military branches. SouthernLINC Wireless is aiding Any Soldier's efforts by collecting cards, letters and care package items from its employees, customers and community members and mailing them directly to the troops.

 Letters and care package items can be dropped off until December 13 at multiple SouthernLINC Wireless locations, in Dothan, Mobile and Montgomery.  Visit to learn more.  Especially during the holiday season, cards and letters from "home" mean the most to deployed military personnel, yet have little cost and a small time investment. 

It can be a little scary to be in charge of the troop checking account, especially when the cookie money comes in.  Just remember a few important points:

  • your troop must have a checking account
  • debit cards are NOT allowed
  • checks must have 2 signatures
  • 3 names must be on the checking account (1 of them being a member of the SU team)
  • keep all your receipts and bank statements (and old checks, if your bank returns them)
  • keep your records up to date, in case there is a random review of your account 

Your troop needs to have a Troop Bank Account form on file with the council so they know where your account is held.  If you have any questions about this, please call the council.

There is lots more good information in the Policies and Procedures document found on our web site.  Check it out, and if you have any questions or concerns, give the council a call!

A Brownie Troop in West Lafayette, Indiana is looking to trade a postcard with a Girl Scout troop of any level somewhere in Alabama. 

Their goal is to "Connect" with troops in all 50 states with the goal of "Discovering" how much we are alike and how we are different in time for Thinking Day in February.  They would like to know something about Alabama and something about your troop.  In return, they will be happy to send you a postcard from their troop about Indiana and their activities! 

When it's over they will be sharing their collection with other local Girl Scout troops and hopefully, the community.  If you can help in any way it would be greatly appreciated. 

If you're interested, please contact Barbara List at

At the 2008 National Council Session, Girl Scouts launched its first ever Girl Scouts grassroots network ( Over 1,000 Girl Scout members, volunteers, staff and alumnae joined the Girl Scouts Advocacy Network to act on issues moving through Congress and the state legislatures that are important to girls and Girl Scouts.  This was a great start, but we need ALL Girl Scout staff, friends and supporters to become a part of this important effort.

 GSUSA is also developing a broader legislative agenda at the federal, state and local level. Our efforts aim to enact public policies that promote healthy living for girls, strengthen Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education for girls, ensure girls' financial literacy, and promote girls' leadership and development.  You can be a part of this effort by joining the Girl Scout Advocacy Network. As a member, you will: 

•     Receive updates on issues moving through Congress and the state legislatures;
•     Be able to send customized messages to your elected officials;
•     Have access to contact information for your elected officials; and
•     Be a part of a growing grassroots network.

 Log on to and become a member today!


An 8-year-old Brownie in Colorado used training received in a Child Assault Prevention class to evade, and then assist in the capture of a would-be assailant.

Here is the complete story.


My name is Haley E. and my Gold Award Project is called "SilverBells" .  This is an adoption of Elderly residents in the local nursing homes in Baldwin County for Christmas gifts!  I have 150 'Silver Bells" that need adopting, and I am hoping that my sister Girl Scout troops can help.

I have placed my "Silver Bells" at Fairhope Phsycial Therapy Center and at The Blue Marlin.  I will also bring some of my Silver Bells to the Council office after Thanksgiving.

If any one would like to adopt a 'Silver Bell"  they can email me at   I can email them a Silver Bell of their choice to them.

Thanks for your help!

Girl Scout Troop 8311


I am the troop leader for Cadette Troop 8143 in southern West Virginia.

We have a special request for our sister Girl Scouts across America.

The Junior Troop in our town has a little 9 year old Girl Scout that just found out she has cancer.

We are doing a card caravan and asking Girl Scouts to send her cards with little stories, jokes, and cartoons.

We are contacting Girl Scout Councils across America asking them to pass this message along to their troops.

If they are interested in sending cards, they may respond to this email to get my address and the cards will be forwarded to the little girl.

Also, we have set up a website to track which states cards are coming from with our goal being to receive cards from each state.  (Duplicates are more than welcome!)

Thank You for your help with this project!



The 23rd annual celebration of National Girls and Women in Sports Day takes place on February 4, 2009. Thousands of sports educators, coaches, athletic directors, recreation directors, association members, sponsors, students, and parents across the country will show their support of the Day and of this year's theme, "Look Who's Playing." To view, click here.

 GSUSA is looking to highlight some terrific Girl Scout athletes.  Do you know a terrific Girl Scout athlete?  If so, send one or two pictures by November 25 to with the following questions answered.

 A little info on Title IX: Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, now known as the Patsy T. Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act in honor of its principal author, but more commonly known simply as Title IX, is a United States law enacted on June 23, 1972 that states: "No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance. Although the most prominent "public face" of Title IX is its impact on high school and collegiate athletics, the original statute made no reference to athletics.

 We would like learn more about Girl Scouts who participate in sports!  If you know a terrific Girl Scout athlete, here are our questions:  

1.       Name:

2.       Age:

3.       Level in Girl Scouting?

4.       What sports do you play?  For how long?

5.       What is your favorite thing about Girl Scouting?

6.       Why do you like your sport?

7.       What have you learned from Girl Scouting?

8.       What have you learned from the sports you play?

9.       For older girls:  What do you think about Title IX?

Thanks for your help!  Please send the answers and photo to




Girl Scouts love to wrap presents -- it's almost as fun as unwrapping them!  A local Senior Care program needs volunteers to wrap and deliver gifts to senior citizens in December. 

The gifts will already be purchased by members of the community; your troop will have a great time wrapping and delivering the gifts.  Seniors love to see the beautiful smiling faces of Girl Scouts, and girls love taking gifts to them -- great memories for everyone!

Troops may contact Home Instead Senior Care in Mobile at 251-342-6655 or Daphne 251-626-7732 for more information or to sign up!

hyundai.jpgRemember watching Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood?  My favorite part was the factory tours: from crayon manufacture to a bread-making production line, I love a tour!

Hyundai Motors in Montgomery offers group tours!  What a great way for our girls to learn about manufacturing and Alabama industry. 

Tour info is found at; tours are offered on Monday, Wednesday, & Friday during the day and Thursday evening.  Ages are 3rd grade and up.   Reservations are required, call 334 387-8019 for more information.

Back to Mr. Rogers.  Did you notice that he NEVER put his lace-up shoes back on at the end of the show?  That always concerned me. 

liz_brent.jpgIt has been a beautiful fall, wonderful bright days with the leaves turning magnificent shades of red, oranges and brown.   Being outside in nature always reminds us of the changing seasons and with fall comes Thanksgiving, a time to be grateful.

I have had the opportunity to experience a number of excellent events for girls this fall, events which are educational and build girls of courage, confidence and character.   I have also heard about many other events which I didn't have the opportunity to attend, where girls learned about cars, science, and the outdoors, to name just a few.

 What I am always struck with at these events is the generosity of those parents who take the time from their harried lives to invest in the future.  I worked at two large council events and saw many of the same parents spend most of their Saturday with their daughters or troop to assure those girls have wonderful childhood experiences.  Thanks to those of you who share your gifts with the girls who will be our future.    Thank you for being the type of person who recognizes that wise investments now will reap tremendous rewards later.  Thank you for having the patience to take your daughter to many places, participate, wait, listen and assist in giving them memories many of them will never forget.   And thank you for your generosity of spirit, to do this for the often unarticulated thanks for giving of yourself to others.

 I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.   Thank you so much.



Elizabeth M. Brent, PhD.


Girls have a great time at our yearly Cookie Celebrations!  And this year's empowering theme of "Imagine If...We Could Change The World"  creates an opportunity for a fabulous Celebration. 

The Cookie Imagination Celebration is just the event to kick off the cookie sale and get your girls excited about the changes they can make to help the world be a better place! 

Girls will make switch plates as reminders to turn out the lights, participate in cookie relays and use their imaginations on how to make the world a better place.

The date and location are Sat, Jan 10 morning at the Rachel Patterson Elementary School in Atmore.  See the program calendar or call Mary Anne Brutkiewicz at 251-344-3330 for more information!

purse_sm.jpgAre you looking for colorful crafts that won't leave glitter on your floor or glue in your hair?  Would you like instructions for practical gifts that your Girl Scouts can make within the time frame of a meeting?   

If so, you are ready for the secret ingredient:Duct Tape!

final_frame.jpgThat's right!  It's colorful, sticky and there are lots of practical crafts that ingenious people have designed.  From wallets to bookmarks, purses to picture frames, there are easy and interesting crafts to be made from Duct Tape.

The helpful people at have put together a gallery and instructions for many different crafts.  Check it out!

The American Red Cross and Pitney Bowes are teaming up to collect holiday greetings from the public for members of the military and their families in the United States and around the world. QuantcastThe goal is to receive and distribute one million cards through Dec. 10. The Red Cross and Pitney Bowes will handle the screening, sorting and delivery -- all you have to do is send a card with a holiday message.  Visit for details on how to send a card.  On the site, there also is an option to create your own card. Once you've read the guidelines, mail your card to Holiday Mail for Heroes, P. O. Box 5456, Capitol Heights, MD 20791-5456, by Dec. 10.  Cards postmarked after Dec. 10 will be returned to sender.

Discover the power of a healthy smile! The National Museum of Dentistry, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, is pleased to present MouthPower. Created in partnership with the American Dental Association, (look for the teacher/leader section) is an entertaining and educational Web experience that engages children in discovering the power of a healthy smile. Meet Mouthie, the chatterteeth mascot, run experiments about oral health, healthy eating, tobacco-use prevention, and how much a dental visit has changed. Girl Scouts will learn about making healthy choices and fulfill requirements for several Brownie Try-Its and Junior Badges. After completing the program, Girl Scouts have the option to purchase a MouthPower patch ($3 each) to place on their uniform.

Try this fun recipe submitted by guest blogger, Heather Newland, for a festive Thanksgiving activity!

Spirited_Turkeys.JPGFor each turkey, you will need the following:

  • Frosting...I prefer chocolate
  • 1 chocolate sandwich-style cookie, like Oreos.
  • 1 chocolate covered cherry (turkey body)
  • 4-5 candy corns (turkey feathers)
  • 1 cinnamon imperial...or red hot  (gobble)
  • Paper plate
  • Bowl for frosting
  • Plastic knife

Twist open a cookie.  Then spread frosting on both halves, only on the white icing part of the cookie, formerly known as the inside part of the cookie.  This frosting will act like glue for the other ingredients.  Place on the paper plate, facing up. Stick the chocolate covered cherry on one of the cookie halves.  Fan the candy corn around the upper half of the other cookie piece.  At this point you may need to add some more frosting to this part of the cookie.  You will then stick this half perpendicular to the chocolate covered cherry half.  The feathers should be sticking up above the cherry.  Now take a glob of frosting and place on the front of turkey.  This can serve as the turkey's head. I've also seen other turkeys in which another piece of candy was used as the head.   Place a red hot on the icing for a gobble.  Admire for a minute or two before gobbling it up. 


babysitting101.JPGThe Christmas rush will be over, our older girls will be out of school and wondering just how to fill their time..why not learn great life skills?

There will be a Red Cross Babysitting Course held at Dauphin Way Methodist Church in Mobile on December 29 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.  The cost is $45 and your older girl will need to bring a sack lunch.

Call Liz Carnahan for details and to sign up.  She needs to hear from you by December 3 at 251-753-3973.  Give her a call and give your girl the gift of skills to support her growing sense of self and responsibility!

Are you a Wal-Mart or Sam's employee? 

When you volunteer 25 hours over a six month period (a little over 4 hours a month) for the Girl Scouts as a troop leader, service unit team member, cookie chair (or in any other capacity), Sam's or Wal-Mart will give $250 to Girl Scouts on your behalf!

I hear you asking "Will Sam's or Wal-Mart do this for me more than once?"  The answer is "YES!"  They will donate $250 every six months that you, as their employee, volunteer the required amount.

Please ask your store manager or community relations manager for the form to fill out. 

How nice is that?  And thank YOU for making it possible! 




What do I do if a girl needs help paying for her membership, dues, uniform, event fees, etc.?

 Start by completing the Financial Assistance application that is located under Forms & Resources on our website.  Before sending this form to the council office, please make sure that parents or guardians complete both sides of the Financial Assistance form, including the blank for their "individual" contribution.  Then, the form should be given to the troop leader so she can indicate the troop's contribution and send the form on to the Service Unit Manager to do the same.  Please be mindful that asking for financial assistance can be embarrassing and all requests should be handled respectfully and discreetly.  In most cases, it is not necessary for the girls to know about the request or the arrangements. 

In our SU and in our troops, leaders are encouraged to collect enough dues, seek out sponsorship funds, or set aside a little money from product sales, to use for financial assistance requests.   Our Service Unit also keeps a few extra badge books and sashes around that people pick up at thrift stores or donate, just so we can offer these resources in such instances.

Once the form has been completed by the individual, the troop leader, and the Service Unit Manager, it should be sent to Tonya Howard in Montgomery. 

Cheryl Miller
Volunteer Liason


Service Unit 7 wants to thank Teri Eversole for volunteering her time to supervise horses for us at camporee. We couldn't have done it without her!  The council would like to thank Tracey Nichols, Liz Carnahan, Wendy Kidd, Shirley Willis and Mary Staton for volunteering their time at Autumn Adventures at Kamp Kiwanis.


Once a month on "Thankful Thursday" we invite you to join us in highlighting the work of special individuals who make a difference in Girl Scouting.

lillylash.jpgThe Life and Times of Lilly the Lash announces the arrival of the Lilly the Lash Patch Program.  Specially designed to empower the modern day Girl Scout.

Fun activities and crafts for ages 5 - 16

Learning Strong Self-Esteem and Life Lessons...  while having a great time!

Please note: the patch activities are on the web site; in order to purchase patches, you must also purchase a book.  See web site for details.  Image copyright 2008 Whimsical Wizard.

gold_award.jpg (This is an excerpt from a comprehensive article, which can be found here: gold_award.pdf. )

 The Girl Scout Gold Award is the highest award in Girl Scouting. A national award, with national standards, it represents a girl's time, leadership, creativity and effort contributed to making their community better. The Gold Award project solves community issues and creates assets for the community in the future. It is more than a mere service project, as it challenges a girl to go beyond her prior experiences (and sometimes her comfort level) to take a leadership role in her community.

If leaders need any advice on helping girls develop their proposal, that's what we are here for! Please contact me and I will be glad to help. 

Mary Anne Brutkiewicz


Is your troop looking for volunteer opportunities in the Mobile area?  Volunteer Mobile has a variety of choices in different areas. For information about these or other volunteer positions, volunteers of ALL ages should contact Volunteer Mobile: 251-433-4456


·         DOG RIVER CLEARWATER REVIVAL: groups & individuals to place markers on storm drains within Dog River Watershed area


·         SOUTHERNCARE HOSPICE: 16 & older: patient care providers: visit in homes & facilities, activity aides, call bingo games, bake cookies, give manicures

·         COVENANT HOSPICE: 14 & older: patient/ family support volunteers, crafts instructors 

Nursing Homes

·         SACRED HEART RESIDENCE: LITTLE SISTERS OF THE POOR: visitors, activity aides for crafts, music programs; Saturdays: 2:30-4pm call bingo games for residents


Did you know that 22 astronauts were Girl Scouts?

Girl Scouts from around the country are invited to participate in the annual "Salute to Girl Scouts" on December 6, 2008 at Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, a day filled with adventure and activities designed to inspire the next generation of space explorers.  This year's activities focus on NASA's Constellation Program to send human explorers back to the moon and then on to Mars.  Salute to Girl Scouts weekend also includes a brand new group activity themed around the International Space Station Truss System.


Participants will have full access to Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex shows and exhibits, take a tour of Kennedy Space Center, enjoy a 3D IMAX space film, tour the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame, attend a private, interactive briefing about NASA's latest mission and meet an astronaut with a special message to scouts.


Admission to "Salute to Girl Scouts Weekend" is $31.50 per person plus tax and includes activities from 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and lunch plus a second day of admission to explore Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex.  For more information or to register please call (321) 449-4400 or visit  

leahT2T.JPGTroops2Troops is a project to connect local Girl Scout troops with our military troops serving overseas!
Servicemen and women really appreciate items we can send them to make their lives a little easier.  Of course, they love our cookies, too!
It's a great service project, and the soldiers really appreciate your support.


Check out this blog! or you can contact Leah at



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