Monday, November 7, 2011

Introduction to Outdoor Leadership Skills

This weekend I spent Friday, Saturday and part of Sunday at Camp Wisdom helping to teach Introduction to Outdoor Leadership Skills.  I enjoy teaching and I enjoy the outdoors.  I was happy to be asked and happy to be out there.  Friday got down to 40 degrees at night but by the time Sunday rolled around it was 70 degrees with a ton of humidity.  We were expecting rain and got none.  Thank goodness!

For LDS Scouters that attend this course, they are allowed to leave late Saturday night.  Some in our District don't like this because they are forced to cram necessary training into a shorter amount of time than the syllabus says you should.  I also do not like this.  We tend to treat LDS Scouters like they are special when some LDS units are not even quality units.  How do we expect quality units when the training they receive is done in a "hurry up" fashion so they can leave?  I explained to those in the District that we are also Youth Ministers and we have responsibilities on Sunday.  I also explained that the boys have responsibilities on Sunday and that is why we don't camp on Sunday.   

I am not one to camp on Sunday, ski on Sunday or entertain on Sunday.  I believe Sunday is for worship and family time.  I do believe though that if I am not in Church due to Scout training, it is a great place to be.  I don't make it a habit but I also don't avoid it.  In the end, I don't go to training or train to get out of Church.  I go to build bridges, I go to network and go to effect BSA leaders that don't often get to experience a LDS Scouter that is dedicated to Scouting as I am.  I also go to train or be trained (I attended a Friday, Saturday, Sunday Wood Badge).  When we were about to leave, the Scoutmaster for the course brought us (my fellow LDS Scouter - we got the nick name Mo Bros [Mormon Brothers]) and discussed that LDS Scouters are encouraged to leave to be home on Sunday, expressed his thanks for us staying and how we had an "out" to leave because we were LDS.  Then something happened that I never expected ~ the IOLS participants gave us a standing ovation.  I was not expecting that.  In fact, it was embarrassing but I am grateful that they appreciate us. 

One of my favorite parts was that the IOLS staff invite a few of their sons who are Scouters up to help cook and clean.  I enjoyed interacting with these two boys.  They were great kids.  They asked a ton of questions about the LDS Church and I was happy to answer them.  When I wasn't teaching, I spent time with them cooking and cleaning.  We had a great time including using our catch phrase "spicy meatball" in a Mario voice.  It was a ton of fun!  I hope when (of if) I am invited back that they are there again.  I hope to add my son to the staff too. 

By the way, I made it to all 3 hours of Church by leaving training at 10 AM.

Below are some pictures from the event.  Please note the changing colors in Texas!  Fall is coming soon!

My fire starting class.  Too bad there was a fire ban.  I love playing with fire!!!

Texas Fall.

The challenge was to see how many cheese puffs I could shove in my mouth.  I ended up with 4 in there.

Due to the fire ban, we were forced to dutch oven cook on a propane stove.  I used foil to make sure I created the perfect environment for my dutch oven.  You do not need those expensive kits.  My pizza was great.

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