This photo was taken back in August on the first day of our family’s 11th program year in Troop 98.
Lots of things have changed in those eleven years. When we started, Kyle was a tiny Cub Scout, Megan was a little sister in a Tiger Den, Olivia wasn’t even born yet, and I didn’t yet know most of the people who are my closest friends today.
In eleven years, my wife and I have had two more amazing kiddos, our Troop has switched from BSA to Trail Life USA, Megan joined an American Heritage Girls Troop, then our Charter Org chartered our own American Heritage Girls Troop (also Troop 98), with my wife part of the founding Core Five, and then we changed our meeting location. Mercy, no wonder I’m tired!
On a personal note, I’ve gone from a scared parent in the back corner, to having served as COR for the past five years - although I’m still not a fan of being up front in any capacity! I’ve massively expanded my comfort zone in the outdoors and my skill set.
Troop 98 and Trail Life USA have both made a huge impact on Kyle, but then again, that’s what I was expecting on day one. That is the primary reason we joined Troop 98 eleven years ago.
What I didn’t expect was the impact on my own life! I’ve grown close to some of the best friends I’ve ever had the privilege of knowing. These guys have challenged me to grow in every way and have helped me through life in ways I never knew I needed. They’ve been there for me when I needed them, and they’ve built into my family.
As a guy who lost most of his family early in life, they’ve filled some pretty big holes.
I guess what I’m saying is that much has changed in eleven years, but I’m incredibly blessed to be able to say that!
Thank you to Trail Life USA, Troop 98 and all of the amazing people that I’ve met through our family’s involvement! I can’t even put into words what you all mean to me.
Lastly, I would add that if you have been considering joining a Trail Life USA Troop - DO IT! Don’t hesitate! Find a Troop and go join, NOW! You can use the Trail Life USA Troop Finder by clicking here! If you are already part of a Troop, and you think you’re only there for your son, with no intention of getting to know the other Troop dads or no intention of helping out in leadership - I highly recommend that you pray about adjusting your perspective. Jump in there, help out, get to know the other dads/families, build into the other Trailmen, find a way to contribute. I guarantee that when you look back on your involvement in a few years, there is no possible way that you will wish you had done less!
I have not had the time to devote to blogging the past few months as our family purchased ten acres in April, and we have been a bit overwhelmed by that. Things have begun to smooth out a little, and I hope to share lots of reasons you should consider joining and getting involved in the coming weeks and months! I hope you’ll read along!