If you’ve been following me on The Facebooks, you know that a big event in the real world happened last week: namely my middle son and his den crossed over from Cub Scouts into Boy Scouts. I have very strong and fond memories of my own crossover, so as their den leader, I felt compelled to somehow connect my experience to theirs. One of the memorable parts of our Arrow of Light ceremony was that our Cub Master, dressed in full Native American regalia (which isn’t kosher these days for good reason), gave each of us an animal name (a Native American name…again, not exactly PC). What I like about that part of the ceremony was that the animal somehow represented both strong and weak elements of our personalities, it was meant to call attention to the positive aspects of ourselves, but also provide some constructive feedback about what areas we could grow as we continued on as scouts.
I only had four boys in my den, two of which were new to our group within the last year or so, and of the other two, one was obviously my son, and the other was his best friend since kindergarten. I spent a looooooong time trying to come up with appropriate animals and words of wisdom to include, but in the end, I’m hopeful that they appreciated my “words of wisdom” as well as the cards I drew for them. When I received my Arrow of Light, my animal name was inscribed on the shaft, but I wanted to go a little further. I made each boy a Pokemon-ish card with an illustration of their animal on one side and all my words of wisdom on the back. I laminated them so that they could carry them in their uniform pockets for the rest of their scout careers.