Ideas to Amp Your July Fourth Celebration

With July 4 just around the corner, are you looking for quick and fun ways to decorate your home or fun recipes to try? Keep reading to learn how you can make this Independence Day filled with delicious snacks, crafts, and more.

House Decoration Ideas:
fallenherolightsHere are 99 Spectacular Ideas for this Fourth of July, but some things are just worth pointing out! Wreaths, for example, are lovely; and luckily for many of us, it is nearly always in style! Make a project of this ruffly patriotic wreath and hang it on your door this July 4th!

To celebrate the lives of our fallen heroes, put together these simple yet beautiful luminaries and light up your walkway.

Fun and Easy Recipes:
wandsBuzzFeed Food offers wide array of creative food ideas that are especially great for kids! Take this fruit wand stick for example! Not only is it easy to make, the kids will enjoy creating their own wand! What is Independence Day if not filled with a little magic?

If you’re looking for a little sugar, we’ve got you covered with 30 Fourth of July Desserts ideas. From patriotic cakes to pies to cookies and brownies, you’re guaranteed to add a little patriotism and sweetness to your celebration!

Fun Games:
If you’re looking for entertainment beyond good company and amazing fireworks, try these 4th of July County Fair Games and add more laughs to your celebration!

For more ideas on how to add some pizzazz to your July 4th celebration, look at our 4th of July Pinterest board! Don’t forget to share with us what you did by sending your pictures to Communications Manager, Jordan King, at

Happy Independence Day from Girl Scouts of Central California South!

-Written by Communications Intern Linda Vang

5 Ways To Conquering Summer Boredom

Flower RingIt’s that time of year kids can’t wait for—the ding of the last bell, indicating school is out for summer! Now what, though? We know Girl Scout families are busy and running around from activity to activity, but kids can quickly become bored still. Here are five tips to conquer summer boredom and enjoy a fun-filled vacation.
1. Learn a new word every day. Come back to school in the fall with an ever-expanding vocabulary. Check out Merriam-Webster’s word of the day online, download The Word of the Day! app on your smartphone or flip through a dictionary and randomly pick a new word to learn every day.
2. Be creative and write. Do you love TV? Create a fan fiction about your favorite TV show. Can you play a musical instrument? Write your own song and perform for your family and/or friends. You can even host a neighborhood talent show with other talented folks in your neighborhood.
3. Play water games. Here are around 40 ways you can cool off as a family, with friends, neighbors or at a party. There are various activities for all ages and varying numbers of people, from two to 20 or more, as needed per game. No pool required.
4. Get crafty. Check out our craft Pinterest board for several awesome craft projects, including using soda tabs to make a flower ring, creating a fishtail friendship bracelet and many more fun ideas.
5. Attend Local Events. No need to splurge on a vacation. You can find events happening near where you live. Check newspaper community calendars online, in your city, to see upcoming events.
Please take pictures of your Girl Scout having fun this summer and email them to our Communications Manager, Jordan King, at

-Written by Communications Intern, Katie Campbell

Girl Scouts Spread Sweetness to Children’s Hospital Central California

sweeteats_1_EditedTroop 2385 of Fresno County gives us a glimpse into the different things Girl Scouts do with their cookie funds!

With money they set aside from cookie sales, the 15 girls of Troop 2385 purchased and donated food and drinks to the Sweet Eats Program of Children’s Hospital Central California.

If you’ve never heard of the Sweet Eats Program, it is a program that provides families of patients staying in the Craycroft Unit of Children’s Hospital with free and easy access to food. The Sweet Eats Program invites and welcomes donations from the community to stock a kitchen in the oncology unit as a way to support parents and families and keep them close to their children as they undergo treatment.

When the girls first heard of this program, they decided they want to help. Collectively, they allocated $500 from their cookie sales with the intention to buy and donate to the program. This past Thursday, their plans became reality!

Fotor0616100050The girls wheeled in wagons filled with $400 worth of selected food, drinks, and snacks and made their donation. In addition to their mission, the girls also took an exciting tour of the Guide Hall of Fame as well as the hospital classroom and playroom.

But it doesn’t stop there! The girls took it a step further and decided to write pen pal notes to some of the children staying in the hospital.

Troop 2385 prove to us that sweetness is a gesture that can be spread through many means, and that is exactly what they did!

Picture on the right: Fridge before and after Troop 2385’s donations

-Written by Communications Intern, Linda Vang

Lily Adventures!

_Camping1You’ve probably seen Lily floating around on Instagram and Facebook, but let’s get to know more about Lily beyond her photogenic exterior!

Dubbed the “travelling doll”, Lily will be going on a series of adventures, all of which will be photographed and shared with you on Instagram and Facebook! If you’ve participated in this week’s Lily game, you understand that you must guess what Lily is setting out to do to be entered into a drawing to win a brand new Lily doll.

Lily embarks on her journey every Monday, so look out for her first photo to guess she is getting ready to do! Three winners will be chosen from both Instagram and Facebook comments to be entered into a drawing. Every Friday we will post the winners along with a fun patch that is on sale the following week in the Gold Mine Store!

This week, Lily camped out with her brand new Girl Scout camping gear and experienced all kinds of fun in the green. Lily’s camping experience earned her a camping patch! You can find her camping gears and her camping Fun Patch in the Gold Mine Store. With Mountain Do! Camp just around the corner and summer beginning, make sure your Girl Scout is fully prepared and equipped to tackle the outdoors!

The drawing for a brand new Lily doll will be in September.

Good luck and may the odds be in your favor!

“Once a Girl Scout, always a Girl Scout”

SCAN0016“Once a Girl Scout, always a Girl Scout” could not ring more true for me!

I served as a proud Girl Scout member from ages 5-9 with the Girl Scouts Golden Valley Council. The Girl Scouts instilled the belief in me that determination and ambition are the keys to success—both personally and professionally.

The Girl Scouts is a wonderful organization to be a part of because of the fun, educational activities and field trips it offers girls. From horseback riding to interacting with customers while selling Girl Scout cookies, the Girl Scouts taught me and my fellow troop members to lean in and act confidently. We learned to pursue activities, goals, and dreams with the mission of becoming well-rounded courageous girls who can conquer the world.

As a Freshman at Fresno State, I started out as a biology major and did not feel that it was my calling. At the time, I was enrolled in a journalism course and loved it. I needed the courage to take initiative and change my major.

Flashback to when I was an incredibly nervous Girl Scout selling cookies for the first time. Because all of my Girl Scout friends were selling cookies with me, I mustered up the courage to talk to customers and, much to my surprise, it was fun. From this experience, I took initiative to change my major and my career pathway down an entirely different avenue — that of Mass Communication and Journalism.

By changing my major with the courage I learned from Girl Scouts, I am now back to the home that instilled confidence in me working as a Communications Intern for the Girl Scouts of Central California South. My experience is definitely the epitome of the Girl Scouts mission: “Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place.”

-Written by Communications Intern, Katie Campbell

Update on Haven H. (from mom, Shannon)

Cat2Haven has a passion for photography. She has an artist’s heart and you can see it in her pictures. She just made state in her competition with a program though her school called Skills USA. This is her second year competing. She took second place regional with her pictures and now at state level, they assign an professional photographer to work with Haven and show her different techniques to really open up her range for shooting photos.

Haven’s motto is “doesn’t matter which camera you use, you can take a good photo on any camera. It’s the angle that you shoot and the life you capture that counts.” (To prove this some of the pictures she took for competition she did with an Iphone. Can you tell which ones???)

The great thing about Haven is she still is a green blood girl scout though and though… with her passion for taking pictures she’s using it to help in the community. Haven is doing senior portraits for kids at her school. Some that can’t afford the ones though the school, or some that are not very confident.

I’ll keep you posted on how it goes at State which is in April.

**Below are pictures taken by Haven**






College Update by Ashley L.

by Ashley L. (former Gold Award recipient and STEM advocate)

Me Running the Orientation Blacklight Dance

Me Running the Orientation Blacklight Dance

What’s up everyone? Sorry that I haven’t updated on Facebook a lot, but it’s been quite a busy, and stressful, semester at college. I’d even argue it’s been the most stressful period of my life so far. It was rough, but I’m here to tell the tale!

So my semester started a few weeks before actual classes started. As a Resident Assistant (RA), I needed to be trained how to provide the best Care, Costumer Service, and Community for my residents. As an RA, I needed to be able to do basic administrative tasks for housing, like checking people into rooms, and making sure that they’re living situations are safe and clean. However, I also need to care for the residents individually and make sure they’re transitioning well to campus. To help them succeed on campus, I have to help them connect to the other people on their floor so that they feel comfortable in their living space. We had extensive training on how to accomplish all of this, while getting to know everyone on the staff better. So far the best experience of being an RA is having a new circle of friends, who help you with your events and help you solve problems you’re facing in your community.

All the RA's

All the RA’s

Sooner than I was expecting, fall orientation was finally upon us! It was extremely busy, but I met all of my residents and welcomed them all to the hall! That’s the most chipper I’ve ever acted ever. I was literally skipping around because I was excited to meet and get to know my residents. Orientation has always been fun, but as an RA I was a much bigger part of it.

Along with my Resident Assistant duties, I also had to help out with RHA with their orientation event (the organization that I was an executive board member of the previous year).

Toward the end of the semester, I started to build up my relationships with my residents. I really do like all of them, but it’s very hard to build a community on a floor so diverse! Out of my 30 residents, I have 3 international students, 4 flight team members (which is a big deal on our campus), 3 greek life members, 3 ROTC members (one of which is the only female cadet to make it into the Air Force Honor Society this year!), 1 Global Security and Intelligence Studies major, and a bunch of other engineers and pilots. So to address this problem, I had them all take a programming survey. I now have a more solid plan for the spring semester, but creating a community will be a challenge.

RHA’s Float for the Shopping Cart Parade

RHA’s Float for the Shopping Cart Parade

And that was only one side of the coin this semester! I knew being an RA would be difficult, so I decided to only take 13 credit hours. I ended up taking Thermodynamics (a study of energy conservation), Aerodynamics (how a wing is able to generate lift), Space Mechanics (learning to calculate the velocity needed to change a satellite’s orbit or send it to a different planet), Solid Mechanics (learning how to design something so it won’t fail), and a physics lab. Solid Mechanics was by far my hardest class this semester, but I am so glad I passed it! My gpa is still really good for an engineering major.

A Sample of Thermodynamics

A Sample of Thermodynamics

As for next semester, I’m looking at 14 credit hours, with really cool classes like Space Propulsion and Experimental Space Systems. I’m taking a light semester again because I’ll have a secondary job! This job is about 10 hours a week, grading homework for a digital circuit class I passed with flying colors my freshman year. Unfortunately, that means I won’t have time for SpaceGrant and RHA, so I’ve become pretty inactive in those organizations. But despite that, this is the first semester that I won’t have to pay anything out of pocket for! My tuition and housing are covered, thanks to a scholarship I earned.

This was a tough semester, but I have a feeling that this next semester will turn out much better! Hope you had happy holidays!

Girl Scout Troop 3113: Robotics Journey

Troop 3113 went on an exciting adventure this fall when they became TeamABC3113 to compete in the Central Valley Robotics First Lego League. ABC stands for Adventurous, Brave and Curious. The girls were so excited when they began to assemble the Nature’s Fury mission models and got the robot programmed to turn and go backwards and forwards. That was just the beginning. We started to meet twice weekly. We had a team working on the Project and another team working on the programming. When the girls wanted to switch and try something different, they let us know. We were in uncharted waters together.

cal fireThe 2013 FLL challenge was Natures Fury and our team decided that they would like to base our Project research on the Rim Fire. We visited the Cal fire offices in Sanger to learn about how fires are fought. We learned how the fire responders care for their equipment and how they work as a team. We learned about what kind of damage the Rim Fire did to the land and how it burned so hot it turned wooded forests into moonscapes. It damaged the habitats of endangered species. After several sessions of internet research the girls decided that they liked the idea of inventing a robotic mouse that was solar powered, programmed to detect smoke and lead animals away from dangerous fires. One of the girls took on the responsibility of writing the entire presentation skit and casted the girls herself. We found a younger brother to play the part of the mouse. The project play was a smash hit and so much fun.

We quickly discovered that programming was fun, but challenging. It was something that the girls had never done before, and it required a lot of patience because of the trial-and-error process involved in successfully completing each mission. First, it had to be decided what missions would be done, how the missions would be done, how to program the robot to do the mission, and finally how to fix mistakes along the way. Two or three girls worked together to do this. Sometimes it seemed like no matter what the robot would not cooperate- and why were we doing this anyway?? I told them that in real-life situations grown ups learn to solve problems by working together. That means they respect each others ideas, they listen to what other people have to say and they try out things. They recognize that problem solving is a creative activity and they learn to have fun while they work. They learned that problem solving was not easy, but there was great reward in achieving a successful mission. We hung out together, ate meals together, played together; We were like a family.GS working on robot - Cropped

Competition was exciting and scary. Our first qualifying round was tough. We weren’t sure what to do, and our robot went all sideways and wrong. No worries, afterwards we headed off to the practice table and refined our strategy. At the second round, success! We more than doubled our points! We headed back to the practice table again, and at the final mission we added ten more points to our final round totals. We were so proud to come in 13th out of 23 teams. We were so happy and had so much fun- we felt like we came in first.

During the day the girls were interviewed about me. I waited outside and afterwards they came out, ran toward me and gave me a big hug. Later on I found I won the Coaches Award. I could not believe it. I am still stunned and amazed that not only did I survive the crazy robot journey, but that I made a big enough impression upon my girls that I was recognized in this way. There is no better present under my Christmas tree than my FLL Coaches Award. I am so proud of my girls, and I can’t wait to continue our Girl Scout journey together.

(Tanya Desmond, Troop leader 3113)

Troop 2583 Celebrates International Girls Day

international-girl-dayDear Girl Scouts,

Troop 2583 (Kings County, Central California South, 9-10 year old GS Juniors) of Lemoore, California, celebrated International Girls Day at their meeting on November 7, 2013.

Through a variety of activities, the leaders of the troop aimed to build confidence among the girls and help them to know each other better.  The meeting started off with a collage of their baby pictures.  The girls had to guess which picture belonged to which girl.  Discussions about what their lives were like at the time the picture was taken and how their lives have changed helped the girls learn more about each other.  This discussion was especially interesting since many of the girls are military children and do not live in the same place they were born.

International Girls Day cards were given to each girl and they wrote positive, inspirational messages to each other on their cards.   Slips of paper were handed out with different questions for the girls to answer.  They took turns answering, What makes a good role model? If you were a superhero, what would your power be?  What qualities make a good friend?  We also discussed self-esteem and education with role models such as Condoleezza Rice, Marie Curie, and Malala Yousafzai.

The meeting ended with the Girl Scout promise and friendship circle.  The girls were given a copy of the confidence pledge, an International Girls Day certificate and patch, lifesavers, post-it note pad and pencil to take home.  The pencil is symbolic of the importance of their education, their friendships are their lifesavers and post-it notes with encouraging words were fun for them to write.  The girls enjoyed their meeting and were excited to receive their patch and certificate for participating in International Girls Day 2013.


Ashley A.
Co-Leader Troop 2583