Young Cultivators Merit Badge: I Did It My Way, Beginner Level

The adorable, always humorous MBA Jane is my way of honoring our Sisterhood Merit Badge program, now with 7,050 dues-paying members who have earned an amazing number of merit badges so far—10,044 total! Take it away, MBA Jane!!! ~MaryJane 

Wondering who I am? I’m Merit Badge Awardee Jane (MBA Jane for short). In my former life

For this week’s Make It Easy/I Did It My Way Young Cultivator Beginner Level Merit Badge, I decided to take under my wing a new hatchling, so to speak. My neighbor takes care of her granddaughter after school some days, and little Alice is a hoot. She was the perfect victim – er, I mean, guinea pig … er, I mean, accomplice for this badge.

And let’s be honest …

… kindergarteners are up for anything. Seriously. They’re like ninjas in so many ways: able to function on little sleep, stealthy, flexible, quick, light on their feet, and they have those big doe eyes that can get them whatever their pea-pickin’ hearts so desire.

What Alice and I desired was one of those tin-can telephones we could string up between the houses and have silly conversations through.

After some thought, I realized dangling a 6-year-old out a window with nothing but a piece of string between her and the ground below might not win me any babysitting awards, so I nixed the two-house idea.

First thing was first: finding and washing out tin cans.

No problem. I had some tins of peaches that weren’t gonna eat themselves. I erroneously believed the little sprite couldn’t eat her half, but she nearly pinned me with a fork when I eyed her portion, so we split them fifty/fifty.

I got out my stool so Alice could help me wash the cans (after checking for sharp edges … I am SUCH a good babysitter). She insisted on an apron while she did the dishes; I was ever so proud. This whippersnapper was shaping up to be a fine farmgirl.

Farmgirl In Training. F.I.T.

Hey, that’s not half bad!

I drilled a small hole through each cleaned can and we used some string I had lying around. Next came the fun part: Alice went scampering to the next room, while I perched on the kitchen counter, pining away for more peaches.

Photo by Chris Potter via Wikimedia Commons

A helpful note from me to you: conversations with 6-year-olds are odd, to say the least.

Alice: Roger, Roger, are you there, Roger?

Me: Yes, but it’s Jane.

Alice: The goose has landed!

Me: Um. Okay. So, what do you want to talk about?

Alice: I like frogs.

Me: Me, too!

Alice: But not to lick.

Me: Eh?

Alice: Well, I gotta go. Call me back!

Me: Okay, bye.

Alice: RING! RING!

Me: Um, hello?

Alice: It’s me! Princess Alice of the Bathroom!

Me: Well, hello there, your royal highness.

Alice: Why do you sound all funny? Are you eating my peaches?

Me, gulping: No!

Alice: Can you smell my breath through here? Like this? WHOOOSH!

Me: Sorry, Charlie.

Alice: I’m not Charlie. I’m Princess Alice, and you’re Roger, remember?

Me: Yes, sorry, um, Princess.

Alice: It’s okay, Rog. I swallowed a quarter.

Me: What? Right now?

Alice: No, like … um … tomorrow.

Me: Huh? You mean yesterday?

Alice: It was very days ago. Tomorrow.

Me: Okay, that’s alright then. I think …

Alice: Oops, I tooted. ‘Cuse me. I gotta go potty while I’m in here. I’m gonna put you on hold, k?

And from there the conversation just got weirder. For a ninja, she’s kinda unorthodox.



  1. Winnie Nielsen says:

    Hahahaha!!! You write the best stories of MBA Jane! I always wanted to try out those tin can phone lines . I wonder if using fishing line or thin metal wire would provide a better conductor of sound ? If it did, perhaps you could run a phone from a tree house to the inside of a house . That way a kid could get the direct message that it was time to come inside for lunch.

  2. Karlyne says:

    So funny! Nothin’ like a kindergartner for laughs!

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