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thrifty last won the day on August 7

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About thrifty

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  1. thrifty

    Swimming Requirements for Rank

    Doesn't surprise me at all. I see that kind of attitude often with newer leaders that are only in it so their kids can Eagle. I believe in following the rules with a little common sense mixed in. That being said, I will also say that I despise the swimming requirements. My son had swimming lessons when he was younger but we are never around water. When it came time for his First Class swim requirements, he could not do it. We don't own a pool. Don't know anyone with a pool or any body of water. Wife and I are able to swim but do so poorly and could not teach how to do so. We ended up spending $400 for a family rec center pass because one of us had to go in with him because of his age. We then spent several more hundred on swimming lessons. Just for him to pass a BSA Swim test one time. I do believe that knowing how to swim is important but several years later and he's never been swimming again. He takes an automatic fail on the camp swim test. The troop doesn't do water/boating type of activities. That was a lot of money just to pass that one requirement. If he were in some type of water accident, I don't think he'd be any better or worse off then he was before passing the swimming requirement. He earned Hiking instead of Swimming. Just because someone has passed a swim test does not necessarily prepare them for anything.
  2. A scout completed all of the requirements for a MB prior to getting a BC. Scout contacted SM for a BC so that he could meet with a counselor, discuss and earn the MB. SM was unhappy the scout completed the MB requirements prior to a discussion with SM. SM did not fulfill the request for a BC. (I am now repeating what I was told because I was not in the meeting) SM advised scout to decide on a counselor (maybe even contact one?) and then come back for a BC. (this is an SM of several years and I think he knows this is not correct) This is not a MB that has any unusual pre-reqs, it's not an age thing either. My understanding of how things should work is simple. Scout can work on MBs at any time (with a few exceptions). It does not matter that scout completed requirements prior to getting a BC. SM's job is to recommend a counselor and give the scout a BC. Per the info I posted earlier, SM cannot deny request for a BC. Unfortunately, if it is not stated clearly and precisely somewhere that SM cannot refuse a request for a BC, there is no point in discussing anything further.
  3. The old forum posts had links to the Bryan blog where it is clearly said. There may be no writing that says a blue card can be denied but there's no writing saying it can't? Here is the link to the blog that addresses this but it's 2013. I don't have a copy of '13 GTA and if it is directly said in that publication, why would it not be included in '17? https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2013/12/23/ask-the-expert-mailbag-merit-badges-blue-cards-first-class-requirement-10/ The excerpt from Chris Hunt, advancement team leader for the Boy Scouts of America.is below. "The policies regarding blue cards changed with the release of the 2013 edition of the Guide to Advancement. See topic Unit leaders do not have the authority to refuse to give a Scout a blue card. The signature on a blue card signifies, simply, that the unit leader has had a discussion about the badge with the Scout and that the Scout has been provide the name of at least one registered and approved counselor."
  4. I'm looking at a PDF of the '17 guide to advancement section 7. I do not see anything indicating a scouter may or may not deny a blue card. Am I missing it? Is it elsewhere? Is it inferred? I'm familiar with the older forum posts and previous links to Bryan on Scouting but those are all several years old. What current item can I reference to clearly indicate denying a blue card is prohibited?
  5. thrifty

    patrol time ideas

    edit: I've also had the idea to look into adult team building games and share those with him. He's been to NYLT and I know they've done some stuff there. I usually roll my eyes when I have to do this kind of team game as an adult but I have to admit I recently did a few that were fun.
  6. thrifty

    patrol time ideas

    Thanks 'rat. I like what you've described but unfortunately the troop and therefore the patrols don't usually work like that. Too much adult interference. There's no theme and most things are left to the last minute. I think this is a great idea. This is the kind of leadership qualities that the wife and I emphasize to him and it would give him time to prepare. When he joined the troop a bunch of the older boys played cards at camps. When the older boys aged out the card games stopped. I'll suggest that. He also has some small travel type dice and camping games that don't get used. I am concerned the adults will decide a game is disruptive but its up to him if he wants to try it. A lot of his work will be convincing adults that meetings don't have to be boring where you sit around and try to stay awake. I think I found a PDF version. http://www.thedump.scoutscan.com/patrolleader.pdf. I forgot there was a PL Handbook. He had a new version but it belongs to the troop and is passed down each election.
  7. So my son will most likely be a PL for a 3rd time (not in a row). One of the things he does not like about troop meetings is how patrol time works. Patrol time is something that patrols do when nothing else is going on. For example, a 1.5 hour meeting to do a 10 minute camping meal plan would result with no other plans for the evening and the patrols would have patrol time. Because patrol time isn't planned and all of it is spontaneous, it results in the patrols just sitting around talking about the latest video games, etc.. Sometimes they review younger scout books but this isn't needed all the time. There's nothing wrong with sitting around bonding but it happens often enough to discourage him from wanting to go to meetings because they are boring. He can't change a lot of things because it comes from the adults but I've encouraged him to change what he can if he doesn't like it. Does anyone have suggestions or recommendations on how to find patrol time ideas that can be spontaneous? He won't be able to have gear ahead of time or be able to plan something specific in advance and most of the time everything is indoors. I'm hoping for ideas that he can have written down in his day bag and just pull something out when they have patrol time and the 5 or 6 scouts can have some fun or do something different. I appreciate any assistance.
  8. thrifty

    NATIONAL POLICY: AOL and Crossover Ceremonies

    I don't know why there is a problem with black robes. Black robes are cool!
  9. thrifty

    WY - SAR FINDS missing 13yr Asperger scout

    How do you find these? Local news, dumb luck, random internet searches? I appreciate you sharing these for several reasons.
  10. thrifty


    coleman, I'd rather not say what lodge just to be discrete but we are by the Great Lakes. I've never rolled up like a cocoon in a rain fly before. I will advise my scout that he may need to do that. I agree that the tough stuff is what I always remember. I've always enjoyed this quote, "The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy." I have had my share of challenges in life and they have all made me stronger, even the ones that almost killed me. He plays it cool and laid back about everything but he let out a little squeak of excitement when he got the email. The wife and I are hoping OA will renew his interest in scouting. His troop focuses on T21 and reaching First Class so as the scouts get older there is not as much interesting stuff being done. There are a few other scouts in OA and a few leaders elected as adults but OA is never discussed except at election time. We don't know how active the lodge is but I'm willing to drive him to meetings and campouts to learn more. The challenge for us will be to get him out of his comfort zone and meet new friends at OA instead of just the friends he already has in the troop. Thanks for the words of encouragement.
  11. thrifty


    Thanks for the responses. I'll send him with the rope and stakes just in case and if anyone has a problem he can blame it on dad. Not really worried about him getting wet, tired or hungry, I like to think he can tolerate more than most of the other scouts just because we do a lot of activities as a family. We just completed his 20 mile for the hiking badge a few weekends ago and he had no problem with that (but I was exhausted). "Burrito" style camping just didn't seem to me like what they would have in mind when asking him to bring the ground cover and rainfly. Makes me claustrophobic thinking about it. Other items were CLass A, backpack, work clothes and gloves, sleeping bag, toiletries, extra clothes, flashlight, water bottle. No knife on the list. The lodge might be willing to work with a candidate, I wouldnt' know but the paperwork says the last available Ordeal is a date in August and if they miss that then they will need to be re-elected to attend. The troop election was in Feb. It's kind of funny that it was so long ago, he didn't even remember the troop having elections. I've been in similar groups and I get the surprise factor but it was more of a negative surprise in our household because now we need to rearrange schedules and I have two important meetings the same day that I will then have to rush home and pick him up and get him to the camp. If people knew in Feb, then I feel the parents should have known also. Like I said in the original post, he didn't go to camp this year but we would have tried to drive him (several hours) to the camp for the call out and then back home. Nothing I can do about it, just my two cents.
  12. thrifty


    My son will going through his Ordeal in a few days. We both know that he is to sleep under the stars. The packing list includes ground tarp and rain fly along with work gloves, etc... Maybe I'm over thinking this, but it doesn't say anything about rope or stakes or anything else that might secure the rain fly. I assume it is ok for him to bring rope and stakes? It is currently scheduled to rain at some time during his Ordeal. The packing list is short, I wouldn't want him to get in trouble for bringing something he should not have. How does someone secure a rain fly without some sort of support? I know I can email the OA team but thought I would ask here, it would probably be faster. Also, just to rant for a moment, we did not find out about him being a candidate until half of the Ordeals were already over. The OA email was received as soon as the troop came back from summer camp. He was not at summer camp to get called out. I assume this is due to all of the secrecy over who is elected but c'mon, this is summer, families have vacations planned, etc..
  13. thrifty

    Denied a court of honor.

    We had a scout turn 18 and Eagle right before he left for college. There was no time for a ECOH. He was probably home for holidays and such but it wasn't until the following summer that we honored him with a small ceremony during a regular scheduled meeting. It was nothing fancy but he seemed happy and it felt right. He was not active in anyway after turning 18 so we didn't need to do it but he deserved it. In our troop, the parents and scout are responsible for most of the ECOH planning. The troop buys the cake. I've seen very fancy ECOHs and a simple one. To each their own but the parents/scout creates the invites and hands them out at the meetings. The committee is also notified so they can get the cake and put it on the troop calendar. Troop email reminders are sent out encouraging scouts to attend and some scouts should be there for the description of ranks and flag presentation. SM usually says a few words along with anyone else.
  14. thrifty

    Badge Magic is THE DEVIL!!!

    I've bought a lot of old shirts that have glued patches. Boiling the glue loose and gently scraping after pulling out of the pot has worked well on all but one. There may still be discoloration on the tan shirts but can't complain about free or cheap. Used troop shirts usually have sew marks from switching patches or stains on them anyway.
  15. thrifty

    Is this the new normal?

    Our troop has been to the same camp for the past three years. It has a Root Beer Cantina twice during each camp week. The cantina is at the outdoor pavilion and the second day is when parents can visit. There is also a dance and popular music. I've only witnessed this once but there were lots of scouts having fun on the stage and dancing and cutting loose. I don't know how many years the camp has been doing this but it was before the more recent changes regarding girls in scouting. I don't like dancing but can it really be considered "girl stuff?" Sorry but I think this is a little narrow minded. I thought vary highly of the young scouts that were on the stage dancing and having fun because they wanted to and were not concerned about the other self-conscious scouts sitting on the benches too worried about embarrassing themselves. The scouts were doing line dances and singing to their favorite songs. I've attached a picture that's not very good so that way people cant be identified. I have some much better photos that show how much fun some of our scouts were having. I remember having a dance at the non-scout co-ed camp when I was young (over 30 years ago). That was a traditional slow dance with boys and girls together and of course I didn't want to do it at the time. wow, that picture I posted is much bigger than I thought it would be.