This year our troop decided to showcase Mexico for our World Thinking Day Country.  The hardest part was coming up with the food that we were going to serve.  We tried horchata (sweetened rice milk), Aqua Fresca (diluted pineapple pulp drink on ice), Mexican Hot Chocolate, Chips & Salsa, Taquitos (not really mexican, I know), and Mexican wedding cookies.  We ultimately decided on the Chips and Salsa.  Simple and everyone loved it.

The fun part was our “milagros” craft.  Milagros means miracle and is usually a charm pinned on a saint from someone who experiences a miracle and is thankful.  For example, if you had a heart transplant and survived, you might pin a heart charm on your favorite saint as a thank you. (this is such a simplistic explanation, check out the wikipedia definition for more info).  We toned that down a bit and just had the girls make a milagro about something they were thankful for.

We took the cheap tin pans that you can buy at the dollar store and flattened them out.  Cut off the tall edges first, then flatten out the inside (where the indents and embossed wording might be) with a rolling pin, or other smooth object.  Do this on a hard smooth surface to get the best results.  We traced a heart shape on the tin and cut these out.  The girls used dull pencils or the ends of paint brushes to “draw” their design on the heart, then we hot-glued a pin on the back.  The girls were very creative with their designs.  It was tricky trying to show the girls how to write a word “backwards” so it would show up embossed on the other side.  The older girls got it, but not so much for the younger ones.

Their costume was the tricky part.  I had visions of making colorful circle skirts for each of the girls, but that was so unrealistic with my time.  My friend found striped fleece blankets (with fringe) at Walmart on sale for like $3.50 each!  We were able to make TWO ponchos out of each blanket.  Add a sombrero and the girls looked great!  So the colors may not be traditional Mexican colors, but they were cute.

The girls made some tissue paper flowers to cover the poles of our shade pop up tent and then posters with the Mexican flag, a map, and some info about Girl Scouts in Mexico.  Overall a great success.