Thursday, January 18, 2018

Save the Date for Summer Fun

One of the best parts of Scouting is the outdoor program -- it's awesome and that is very intentional! Our goal is always to keep the OUT in scOUTing!

Another fun perk of being involved is collecting cool insignia and patches. The Cub Scout Outdoor Activity Award is one of those special awards that can only be earned by attending one of the District-sponsored Summer Day Camps or by attending one of the Cub Scout or Webelos Resident Camps. Resident Camps are overnight experiences held at Sid Richardson Scout Ranch, Worth Ranch and/or Tahuaya). You can read all about Resident Camp HERE.

Today, however, I'm specifically talking about Day Camp!  Our summer day camp is organized by some great volunteers whose only wish is that your son have an exceptional Scouting experience.

Mustang District Summer Day Camp is an annual themed week-long adventure that takes place daily at Harvest Church, usually the first Monday after school is released for summer. The cost is about $100 per "camper" and that cost can be reduced greatly by participating in one of the optional fundraiser that will be announced soon. 

Attending Day Camp will enable your son to earn the Outdoor Activity Award pictured below.

Tigers, Wolves, Bears, Webelos and AOL Scouts are eligible to earn this award which is sewn onto the uniform pocket flap.

Read all about it HERE.

Because attending either Day Camp or Cub Scout/Webelos Resident Camp is a required component for earning this award, I would suggest starting work on this optional award in June after attending District Day Camp. That gives you a full year of Scouting to fulfill the requirements. We have an awesome program that will allow for it to be completed easily with your continued involvement each month.

Better yet -- the Outdoor Activity Award can be earned every year. The patch is awarded once and then pins are awarded for the additional years it is earned.

So, save the date... the first week of June for MUSTANG DISTRICT DAY CAMP!  More information coming soon.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Scout Sunday

Scout Sunday is an observance of the connection between the BSA and its religious-oriented chartering partners.

As part of our commitment to giving back to our Chartered Organization, our units (the Troop, the Crew and the Pack) provide volunteers at each of the services held Saturday, 2/17 and Sunday, 2/18 to continually recognize the impact of Scouting within the church body of Keller UMC.

Youth will be greeters/ushers to help recognize and demonstrate our commitment to the Scout Law being Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Cheerful and Reverent.

Participation qualifies Scouts to receive the Scout Sunday patch pictured above. Your family needn't be a member of the church for your Scout to participate, just a registered Scout of our Unit.

You need to officially sign up through the link below so that Mr. Hearrell, our Chartered Organization Representative, may track and communicate with volunteers as needed.

For those wanting to participate, full Field Uniform is required.


Saturday, January 13, 2018

2018 Pinewood Derby Theme

The theme has been set for the 2018 Pinewood Derby and it is....

We will be distributing cars in February so start brainstorming NOW with your Scout for what he wants his car to be.  For those dads that have a super competitive spirit, we will have an OPEN class for siblings and parents!  

Get your creative ideas flowing now!  Tigers, Wolves, Bears and Webelos will be given a regular kit to cut, sand and paint.  Lions will be given a pre-cut car to sand, paint and decorate.  

Rule packets will be distributed soon. There are height/length/weight requirements that must be met. We will schedule a few workshop days so that all scouts will have access to tools, sanders, bandsaws, etc.  Be watching Scoutbook for those dates.  We need one parent from every den to help on the Pinewood Derby Committee.  If you're able to step up and help out, please contact April Driggers today!

Friday, January 12, 2018

A Scout Is Reverent

The Boy Scout Handbook states that:
A Scout is reverent toward God. He is faithful in his religious duties. He respects the beliefs of others. The word reverence refers to a profound respect for God. The wonders of the world remind us of our God's creative power. We find it in the tiny lines of a leaf and the great mysteries of the universe. It exists in the kindness of people and in the teachings of our families and religious leaders.  
We show our reverence by living our lives according to the ideals of our beliefs. The Scout benediction is "May the Great Master of all Scouts be with us until we meet again."
The United States Constitution gives each of us complete freedom to believe and worship as we wish without fear of punishment. All your life, you will encounter people who hold different religious beliefs or even none at all. It is your duty to respect and defend the rights of others whose beliefs may differ from yours.

Our Chartered Organization Representative, Mr. John Hearrell, authored this post for us on the 12th point of the Scout Law.

One of my favorite memories was when my son Zackary was working on his Communication Merit Badge. He choose to plan an interfaith worship service. 

It warmed my heart as I watched and listened to Zack leading Troop 1910 through chapel service on a Sunday morning.

It was January and we were camping at the LBJ Grasslands. While service was taking place, the sun rose from the East and warmed our backs.

I will never forget glancing up, catching Zack’s eye’s and thinking; My scout is becoming a man, a man of honor, a reverent man. 

Thank you for the memories! 

John K. Hearrell
Scout Leader
Pack 1910 Chartered Organization Representative 

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Journey to Excellence - GOLD!

Congratulations Pack 1910 -- you are part of a Journey to Excellence GOLD Unit!

Scouting's Journey to Excellence is the Boy Scouts of America's planning, performance, and recognition program designed to encourage and reward the success of its units, districts and councils. It is meant to encourage excellence in providing a quality program at all levels of the BSA.

To reach Gold, our pack has to score highly on different grading criteria within 8 out of 11 target areas such as:

  • operating within a budget
  • membership related goals such as building, retaining and transitioning Webelos to a Troop
  • helping our boys advance
  • conducting a fulfilling outdoor program
  • participation in the summer day camp and resident camps
  • conducting service projects
  • holding regular pack and den meetings
  • recruiting and maintaining trained leadership
A perk of Gold status is that each member gets a spiffy new patch (pictured above) to wear on the bottom of the right sleeve of their blue or tan scout uniform shirts.  These were distributed at the January Pack meeting.  If you weren't in attendance, please check with our awards chair to pick yours up!

A Scout is Clean

Our trusty Scout Handbook reminds us that, "A Scout is clean. A Scout keeps his body and mind fit. He chooses the company of those who live by high standards. He helps keep his home and community clean."

We can't remotely expect to be outdoor enthusiasts and not get dirty. Camping is dirty work, but that's part of the allure of the outdoors. You're really getting to be one with nature. Sometimes literally. Sometimes, you may look like you're actually becoming part of it! Think about all of the "dirty" (although honorable) jobs out there -- mechanics, construction workers, farmers, coal miners... the list goes on and on.

I mean, there is an Eagle Scout who has made a career of showing us just how many Dirty Jobs ARE out there.

Yep! Mike Rowe is an Eagle Scout. Pretty cool, huh?

In the pursuit of "clean," we have actually created quite a conundrum for mankind in that some people now have the mindset that all dirt and germs are bad. The idea that having even a little dirt on you is a very bad thing. We have so many people now using antibacterial soap and hand sanitizer instead of just plain old soap and water, that we have started creating superbugs that are RESISTANT to antibiotics! How scary is that? Dirt and some bacteria aren't bad things. And, regular, plain soap is just fine for getting a little mud off your hands.

But, while we are discussing the WORD clean, we aren't necessarily only talking about being Zestfully clean. We are also talking about being clean in world, word, thought and deed.

First, let's think about the environment. We MUST set the standard of care for the earth we are on. We MUST consume less. We MUST come to the realization that simply throwing something away, doesn't mean it's gone. We MUST realize the dirty impact that we have on the world and then DO SOMETHING about making it a MUCH more clean place.

In Scouting we have the mantra to "leave it better than you found it" and that should be everywhere! Conservationism and the 3 R's we preach: reduce, reuse and recycle are all ways to keep the earth clean.

When your Scout starts to camp, teach him the importance of keeping his tent space tidy whether it's with you on a family campout, when he's learning the patrol method and camping as a Webelos or even when he camps alongside or with a Troop as he becomes a Boy Scout. I can assure you that it is no fun to be a tentmate with a slob... especially when your gear goes missing under the mess left in his wake. Teach him now, how to take care of your gear and keep it clean for it to last longer.

Teach your Scout the importance of clean hands when preparing food so that safety is insured for everyone. Learning to BE clean by showering daily to remove dirt, germs and odor (onion pits are the worst!) is something that they do not only for themselves, but for those that have to be around them.

In Scouting, we teach the boys to clean dishes properly using the three bucket method. Did you know there was a three bucket method? Well, then come camp with us. You need to learn this to reinforce it when your scout gets to that level!

Another term you'll hear -- especially around the new year -- is eating clean. Eating clean doesn't mean that you've washed everything you're consuming with soap and water. It means that you are showing self-respect to your body and those you feed by giving them wholesome, nutrient dense sustenance. This is one reason we say no soda on camp-outs and there are rank-specific requirements and electives about learning about the food pyramid, nutrition and being healthy in your food selections. When was the last time you flipped over a package of something you're going to consume and read the label? Can you pronounce half of it? Do you know what's in your food?

The Boy Scout Trail states:
If it's not dirt, earth, and grime that makes a Scout dirty, what does? It's a simple chore to scrub dirt off skin, but a much more difficult task to clean up filthy thoughts, habits, and behaviors that accumulate in our lives. First a feeling of jealousy or mistrust towards someone, then a derogatory comment about them, and soon a person is a fountain of malice spewing forth filth, vulgarity, and hate. Cleaning up such a mess is nearly impossible, but fortunately doesn't take a lifetime to develop. By keeping the mind and heart clean and not allowing the emotional grime to settle in, the problem is kept at bay.

One of the best aspects of Scouting is that it brings together all walks, creeds, races and socio-economic groups together for one purpose - the brotherhood of Scouting. Since we are all to be living the Scout Oath and Law in our daily lives means that this, in turn, helps us to associate with others who are also pledging to live with a clean mind and heart. Serving alongside others who are cheerful, encouraging, friendly, loyal, benevolent and kind helps to encourage like behavior.

Ever heard the saying, you are the company you keep? Think about it. Most cliches were coined for a reason. If you associate with those that push the envelope, break rules or laws and engage in less than desirable behavior, you're more inclined to assimilate with that crowd rather than be the one that stands out for being different and saying no.
"Dirty jokes, vulgar comments, racial slurs, ridicule, and swearing are often heard in many situations. They have no place in scouting and no place in a scout's life. Besides choosing to not say those kinds of things, a scout should also make it known that he will not tolerate those things. A single scout will most likely not change the behaviors of a group, but he can make his feelings known and then remove himself from the crowd. He can also support someone he finds as the butt of these comments and demonstrate compassion to those unclean louts, possibly helping them recognize their ways."
There is a reason that people are able to sue for emotional distress. The mind and emotional psyche is something that can be made unclean and that "dirt" isn't quite as distinguishable as a mud speck on a chin. Keeping your thoughts, actions, words and deeds clean can help to insure that those around you are buoyed by your scouting spirit and cleanliness.

A Scout is Clean.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

A Scout is Brave

The tenth point of the Scout Law is Brave -- by definition, the polar opposite of fear. Although, I believe that both can be equally crippling. Being brave doesn't mean you're not afraid... bravery is actually to continue to move forward despite being afraid and frankly, it's something quite different for each and every one of us.

Bravery could mean something as simple as standing on top of the monkey bars to a Tiger scout or signing your name on the line to dedicate your life serving in our nation's military. Bravery can be conquering Mt. Everest or having the courage to stand up before strangers to deliver a speech. It could be going away for the first time ever to camp without the creature comforts to which you've grown accustomed... to walking into the meeting of a brand new Pack and trying to make friends with people you don't know.

Bravery is saying no to the wrong thing.

Bravery can be having the courage to quit when you know the path by which you travel is not the one you intended. Listening to that inner voice rather than the masses of people that you may have surrounded yourself with.. is very brave.

Being okay with being different... is brave.

Bravery is... showing up... in every sense of the word.
{I do have to put a disclaimer here though -- don't let me allow ANYONE to confuse being brave with being stupid because the internet is FULL of people doing really, REALLY stupid things that don't equate to an OUNCE of bravery.}
Thanks, I feel better now.

Every month in the Boy's Life magazine there is a feature called Scouts In Action. Many of their stories highlight scouts all over the world who showed bravery. Check out some of those stories the next time it arrives in your mailbox. In fact, here's a link to the site with the previously published Scouts in Action pages from the magazine.

So taking on the idea of bravery... did you know that a Scout can face danger even if he is afraid... that's being brave. Think of all the things people are afraid of. I'll bet that one of the top fears on more lists than you could even fathom is...

!! SNAKES !!

There are lots of people who believe that the only good snake is a dead snake but there couldn't be anything further from the truth. Snakes are beneficial to our ecosystem in more ways than you can imagine. The way to learn to be brave if you're afraid of them is by educating yourself to identify the venomous snakes you might come across so that when you see anything other, you can simply appreciate them (and... perhaps spray them with a water hose to get them to go away if you're still not a fan).  That might require an advanced degree in bravery, however. 

What can you do today to show how brave you are?

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

A Scout is Thrifty

The Scout handbook states that "A Scout is thrifty. A Scout works to pay his way and to help others. He saves for the future. He protects and conserves natural resources. He carefully uses time and property."

The Boy Scout Trail states it well,
"Of the twelve points in the Scout Law, I imagine that Thrifty is the one most difficult to quantify. A Scout in an affluent community may consider himself thrifty by saving his $25 allowance for two weeks to buy a video game while a few Scouts in a less wealthy neighborhood might pool the change they collected from turning in soda bottles to buy a bag of candy. Being rich or poor does not define the ability to be thrifty or not. A rich person can be thrifty without being a Scrooge and a poor person can be thrifty while still sharing what he has."

One of the reasons we have fundraisers is so not to burden our Scouts' families with the cost of every activity he may wish to participate in. If he doesn't bear part of the responsibility (I like to call it "sweat equity") for helping to fund the adventures he wants to partake, he has no vested interest. While it may be easier for us to just write a check and pay their way, it teaches them nothing about working and saving to reach their goal, and everything about feeling entitled to simply get what they want. When they have a vested interest and understand how hard they've worked, they start to understand the idea of value and investment and ultimately, the reward for hard work.

Our annual popcorn fundraiser is a chance to provide Scouts the opportunity to practice not only the art of sales, but also that of communication, rejection, goal setting and reward. Being able to sell Camp Cards to pay their way to Day Camp and attend Pack overnighters that might otherwise prove to be a little cost-prohibitive, is an excellent lesson in setting a goal and investing in their program. When they aren't given a blank check for everything they want but have to learn to put forth effort and prioritize to acquire what they want, they are taught perseverance and life skills they can't learn elsewhere at such an early age.

At the Webelos level (when the dens are permitted camp on their own) and are taught the patrol method of Boy Scouts (meal planning for camp outs and learning to shop within a set budget), scouts learn the importance of staying WITHIN that budget and completing the task of making it work by being thrifty. Paying their way is such an important part of their Scouting experience. Our hope is that our Pack families understand that the need to participate in fundraising isn't merely to raise funds, but to teach the boys valuable life lessons and help us all continue to have a vested interest in the program.
Being thrifty isn't always about money, however. Being thrifty can be about resources - turning off the faucet when you're brushing your teeth, turning off lights when you leave a room, keeping the doors shut in the summer, using what you have until it is no longer functional rather than buying the newest model just because so-and-so has one or even repurposing materials rather than buying new. Not wasting resources like water and electricity is called conservation. Conservation is SO important to our world and we will continue to make it an integral part of the Scouting movement.

We will likely hold another small fundraiser in 2018 to use to help pay for and finish furnishing our Pack's camping trailer. Our goal is to outfit this trailer with camping supplies so that each den has what they need for our Pack events enabling them to get the most of their Scouting experience without having to be burdened with purchasing camping equipment that they may not always need (camp stoves, lanterns, Dutch ovens, etc.) Being thrifty will be an important part of this process because we anticipate these materials lasting years. Therefore, our expectation is that the boys learn the process for taking care of them. This means that they are helping to conserve pack resources which will help with future Pack purchases instead of the Pack having to continually repair or replace things that aren't taken care of. It also ensures we have the equipment necessary so that no family will ever have a need for a gross amount of personal supplies in order for their son to experience the thrill of camping!

I also completely agree with this sentiment as well,
As Scouts and citizens in the most wasteful country in the world, we have a real challenge to raise our level of thrift. We are much like the child that is given everything and comes to expect everything. We consume more, conserve less, and expect better than we have. We know we should change, but few of us do. Even worse, we have come to accept debt as a way of life in this country. A thrifty Scout should expect nothing and work for everything he desires.

Whether rich or poor, a Scout that is thrifty learns that by adhering to the other points of the Scout Law, his thriftiness is also part of being helpful, friendly, courteous, and kind. Sharing of one's own doesn't necessarily mean money as much as doing what you can, with what you have, to make the world a better place.

A Scout is Thrifty.

Monday, January 8, 2018

A Scout is Cheerful

So we've talked about the fact that a Scout is Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient and now... Cheerful.

The Scout Handbook reminds us that "A Scout is cheerful. A Scout looks for the bright side of life. He cheerfully does tasks that come his way. He tries to make others happy."

On the surface, "cheerful" doesn't necessarily seem like it's quite as tough of an attribute to attain as some of the others-- but let's take a deeper look. "He cheerfully does tasks that come his way."

Can you think of a time when someone asked you to do something that you didn't want to do? Were you cheerful about it? I mean, you know it had to be done regardless, so the bottom line was your attitude about completing the task at hand. That is what can make all the difference in the world.

For those of you who aren't spring chickens, you may recall a certain Disney movie with a beautiful, dark-haired princess who happened upon the house of seven very messy little workers. But instead of throwing a fit and turning into a grumpalumpagus (it's an April-ism, you'll just have to roll with it), she taught everyone who saw the movie these lyrics:

"Whistle while you work...
and cheerfully we can tidy up the place
So hum a merry tune...
It won't take long when there's a song to help you set the pace."

Her attitude was her choice... and her choice was to be cheerful about a less than awesome task. That made all the difference in her disposition and that of everyone around her. The work was still going to be the same but she CHOSE to be cheerful.

When at a camp out, it would be easy to complain about the rain, the heat, the cold, the bugs, the food, the duty roster or our Scouts can realize that they can choose to be cheerful. Their one small act of cheerfulness could be the ripple in the temperament of everyone encountered!

It's easy to be cheerful when the day is warm, sunny and everything is seemingly going your way. But... what about when someone cuts you off in traffic? What about when you hear news you don't want to hear? What about if someone grumps at you?

I liken the CHOICE to be cheerful to standoffs at the dinner table with toddlers. I'm pretty sure we've all been there (and if you haven't, you should write parenting books). You've likely done a little bit of negotiation to get them to JUST TAKE ONE BITE.

Just one.


One... little... measly... nothing... bite!


For the love of PETE... EAT IT!

That negotiation took thirty minutes... thirty minutes of your life that you'll never get back.

Thirty minutes was exactly long enough for them to either become so ravenous they just ate it out of extreme hunger (or, in the case of my rug rats, COMPLETE AND UTTER spite) or long enough to realize they LOVED whatever was being served and were then begging for more.

The point is, they wasted more time being defiant and UNcheerful than they did joyfully completing the task of eating the rest of their meal and'...bite!

Choosing to be cheerful comes with maturity and the development of personal integrity and empathy. Little ones could have cheerfully taken the bite and made the determination of palatability in a nanosecond... but they slogged through the negotiation process pushing things around on their plate just to drag it out for no other reason than they could. In this scenario, everyone usually ends up being quite miserable.

...and seriously, what kid doesn't like cheese on their hamburger? Oh MY LANTA it's a wonder I'm not completely grey haired! But I digress... back to the point at hand...

The choice to do any task cheerfully, expeditiously, joyfully... is ours... it's theirs.

And, just so you have something more in your parenting arsenal, when my children grumble, I like to throw out Philippians 2:14.

The Boy Scout Trail reminds us:
A spirit of cheerfulness requires strong character and an understanding of life. When a Scout realizes that it is completely up to him to be depressed or cheerful, discouraged or resolved, cowardly or brave, then he can make the choice. Until that happens, boys will blame the world around them for their feelings. The amount of hardship required to adversely effect a person's demeanor is a solid test of that person's depth of character.
Sad occasions, such as a friend moving away, failing a test, or losing a pet for example, will understandably dishearten a person. Feelings of loss and sadness are normal and even a sign of respect. But, after an appropriate time, it is necessary to carry on with life and find goodness and cheer in other people and healthy activities.

Scouting renders itself to many opportunities for life lessons in every point of the Scout Law. Our January Pack meeting, for instance, is a race and not everyone will win. There are no participation trophies to just make everyone feel good. The feeling should come from within from DOING THEIR BEST!

However, we are helping provide opportunities for Scouts to CHOOSE to maintain that cheerful disposition when... they might come in second. Why not encourage your Scout to be that Scout that congratulates the efforts of everyone involved and pats the winner on the back?

We provide opportunities, too, for selfless service to our community as well. Cheerful dispositions are always welcome at these events! (Can anyone tell me, however, why is it more fun to pick up other people's trash than it is to pick up your own socks off the floor? I still will never understand that one!)

Think of ways to encourage your scout to be cheerful and to help cheer up others. You don't grow by not having to face challenges and obstacles. You grow by how you choose to face the challenges and obstacles set before you. Be cheerful!

Pack Meeting TOMORROW!

A quick reminder that TOMORROW NIGHT is our January Pack Meeting! We hope to see you all there.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

A Scout is Obedient

The Scout Handbook says, "A Scout is obedient. A Scout follows the rules of his family, school, and troop. He obeys the laws of his community and country. If he thinks these rules and laws are unfair, he tries to have them changed in an orderly manner rather than disobeying them." Miriam Webster defines obedient as submissive to the restraint or command of authority: willing to obey.

While in Cub Scouts, Akela is in command -- be it a parent, Den Chief, Den Leader, Cubmaster or other authoritative figure, but as the ranks progress from Lion to Tiger to Wolf to Bear and then to Webelos... we start giving some of those leadership opportunities back to the boys. Once in Boy Scouts, it's all about tribal knowledge and transferring that training in obedience to becoming an authority and a good leader to those in your command. It's a full-circle moment.

Learning to be obedient is learning to self-discipline. Submissive to another's command isn't jumping just because someone says so, it's doing the right thing because it is the right thing to do. When your parent asks you to clean your room, you obey. I'm fairly sure kiddos don't want to clean their room, but doing what your parent asks is being obedient, even if there are better more fun things to do.

I know at my house many times when given an assigned chore, I'm met with, "why can't _____ (insert another brother's name) do it?" The point to be made is that, the objective was clearly assigned to you. It's not up for negotiation. Be obedient. That is the right thing to do. Obedience, however, is clearly a choice dictated by the level of maturity children are capable of at any various age. That being said, as a Scout becomes more mature, he could work to change the rules and requests at his home in an orderly fashion to say, secure more "screen time" or negotiate for a later curfew after showing responsibility, self-discipline and self control as well as a history of obedience with which he may back up his request.

The Bible is full of verses on the expectation of obedience from children in the home as well: A Scout is encouraged to obey his parents. The apostle Paul wrote, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right” (Ephesians 6:1), and “Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord” (Colossians 3:20).

The Boy Scout Trail states,

"Actually, an independent person has self-discipline enough to be obedient to his conscience. He obeys his moral and ethical honor and does what he knows is right, not because it is the easiest or most beneficial thing to do, but because his honor insists it be done. A Scout with a strong character, able to put the needs of others before his own and obey his conscience, can usually obey directions from leaders well because of his self-discipline.

As Scouts get used to the troop structure, they notice that the Senior Patrol Leader always seems to be handing out the orders and the Patrol Leaders in turn pass the orders down to the Scouts. They want to be on the top where they can give out orders instead of always taking them and that is often a motivation to hold a position. They don't yet realize that there is even more responsibility higher up the ladder of command and the leader needs to rely on those under him to accomplish a larger goal. Teamwork relies heavily on obedience, discipline, and trust.

By developing obedience in the family until and in all ranks of Scouting, the Scout is better able to handle the similar requirements of the workplace where orders are routinely given and expected to be completed. In all circumstances, whether family, school, work, or social, the obedient Scout must make sure that obeying a direction is not against his honor. If a boss tells him to cheat a client or a friend tells him to steal, he must compare the order to what he knows is right and wrong and first obey that inner compass."

Parent/Leader Meeting TOMORROW!


The Pack Committee helps ensure that our Cub Scouts are offered fun-filled and meaningful events through the year.

New volunteers, Den Leaders and parents please attend and help enrich and strengthen our Pack. Topics include upcoming pack meeting plans, assignments for the next month and upcoming large-scale activities.

We have a few leadership roles we would love to have filled and just by coming to these meetings -- you could help the Pack tremendously!

The meeting is at 7pm at the Scout House on Monday, January 8. We will be finalizing the Pack Meeting, doing Blue & Gold planning, discussing Pine Wood Derby and the Spring Campout. Come join us!

Saturday, January 6, 2018

A Scout is Kind

Kindness is closely related to being Courteous yet each of these points of the Scout Law has its own distinction.

It seems that Kindness is more aligned with the whole "Golden Rule" of do unto others as you would have them do unto you. My grandmother used to tell us, "If you can't be kind, then be quiet." She was right.

It's a really simple thing to do -- to be kind. To do something out of kindness and for no other reason... is a heart thing. a character thing. a Scout thing.

Kindness is universal. It costs nothing. It can mean everything.

You either treat others with kindness, or you go through life oblivious to anything greater than yourself.

The Scout handbook states that "A Scout knows there is strength in being gentle. He treats others as he wants to be treated. Without good reason, he does not harm or kill any living thing."

Can you imagine living in a world where people sought out with great intention the act of BEING KIND moreso than being right or first or the winner? Being kind is really... doing the right thing. Funny how those words can be interchangeable: Obeying the law is the right thing. Using your manners is the right thing. Treating others with respect is the right thing. Leaving things better than you found it is the right thing. Kindness is the right thing.

The Boy Scout Trail states:
Kindness should be first practiced by a Scout in his own home. It can be a difficult challenge to show kindness to those in your family. Whether it be irritating siblings or misunderstanding parents, making constant efforts to be kind to those people with whom you have a conflict is hard work. Each of us is bound to fail some times, especially when we are in such close quarters for such a large part of our time. At those times of failing to be kind, kindness can still make a comeback through sincere apologies and forgiveness. The point of 'Forgiveness' is not in the Scout Law, but it is a real demonstration of kindness.
It's much easier to be kind to friends, teammates, other scouts, and family acquaintances that are seen occasionally. There is less personal commitment and less intimacy so it is less work to overlook their shortcomings and differences in beliefs and behaviors. Still, a Scout needs to demonstrate kindness to these people in order to build friendships and strengthen his character. Typically, showing kindness to these people results in a response of similar kindness in return.

Think about all of the right things that are kind! Leaving no trace is the right thing but it's also being kind. It's being kind to those who come after you. It's being kind to nature... our environment... our parks... our green spaces... Obviously the tree you choose not to carve on isn't going to say thank you, but you can bet that your act of kindness toward nature will be something that everyone who comes after you will appreciate because it stays unmarred.

Choosing to be kind rather than to be right shows what's in your heart. Maintaining a gentle disposition when someone is really pushing your buttons doesn't show weakness, it shows kindness (and self-control, but that's a whole other can of worms). For in the end, the one thing you do have control over is your response and your level of kindness.

How about the idea of an RAK? A Random Act of Kindness. To complete an RAK is to look for ways to completely brighten someone else's day without recognition or expectation. It's to look for an opportunity to pay it forward... Do this AND let your children see you do it! Plant the seeds of kindness in their hearts! Buzzfeed published an article with 101 Easy Ideas for Random Acts of Kindness. Click the image below to be taken to that.

Kindness is an outer expression of the inner workings of your heart. It takes guts to be kind. Scouts can do hard things, you just have to give them the chance. Maya Angelou said it best. To be given kindness... is an amazing feeling!