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  • LoniMoore

My favorite jewelry ... EVER!


I have several pieces of jewelry I cherished, in no specific order, prior to February 27, 2016:

- My engagement and wedding band set;

- The Cartouche my parents bought on a jog through Egypt on one of their Holy Land trips;

- A Linde Star ring I bought with money I received after my college graduation;

- A Precious Moments pin I got when our son was born;

- A necklace made by Alisha Stamp when I accompanied her son at a recital;

- My high school class ring;

- A pair of earrings my step, Becca got me one Christmas.


But last Saturday I received a pin that puts one piece of jewelry at the tippety-top of my list.


Rewind to November 2011 when our son was old enough to join the Boy Scouts. After he completed his first merit badge (chess) at his first lock-in, I received a red, white and blue ribbon and Dude pinned a Fleur de Lis, the symbol of the Boy Scouts on my ribbon. I was unimpressed at the time and so out-of-touch with the Boy Scouts that I had him put his badges on the wrong side of the sash.


The next summer, dear Hugsband decided it was time for Dude to try summer camp, but Dude survived the week with a lot of encouragement from his scout master. At the time he was not convinced the merit badges he earned were worth the time away from his dog Krypto. The boys were not allowed to have a campfire because of fire danger. One day while he was at camp, the temperature was in the upper nineties and humidity in single digits. Dude came home from camp the day I had some college friends over. We had reservations to go to a Colorado Springs’ tradition, The Flying W Ranch, that evening. But as some people stood on the deck, grilling, they saw a plume of smoke to the west which became visible fire just a few miles west of us and by the time we would have left for the dinner reservations, the recording for the organization said, “We have evacuated due to the forest fire.” Over the next few days, smoke scented the area and a group from a Christian camp spent their camp at our church and provided much needed xeriscaping, since watering plants was restricted. Seventeen days later, when the Waldo Canyon fire was contained, two people had died, nearly 350 homes were destroyed and tens of thousands evacuated, we were sure we’d seen the worst thing possible in our city. That December, Dude pinned the Tenderfoot Fleur de Lis and the Second Class “Be Prepared” pin on my ribbon and more merit badges on his sash.


The next summer, 2013, Dude had grown and was ready for summer camp. On Tuesday before his camp, as I drove him to a violin lesson, I saw a plume of smoke directly north. “No, we can’t have another fire,” I thought. As I waited for his lesson, I received an email from our church asking us to pray because several of our pastors and thousands of people were being evacuated from the Black Forest area just north of town. By the time Dude’s lesson ended, the sky was gray and the smell of smoke filled our nostrils. From our deck, we could again see smoke and flames just a few miles north of us. Scout camp was delayed one day until the area across from the Camp Dobbins was contained. Again there were no campfires, but at the next troop court of honor, in addition to merit badges from camp, Dude pinned my fourth and the First Class “Be Prepared” pin on my ribbon.


During the Black Forest fire, trucks from Samaritans’ Purse parked in our church parking lot for weeks. The food pantry was expanded and Dude and I worked there as often as week could, not just for the Boy Scout required service hours.


That November we went to Durango, Colorado for a long weekend and to ride the Polar Express train. Dude thought that was cool, but he became obsessed with a hotel in the town, The Strater Hotel. “I could build that out of Lego,” he said repeatedly. In December, he received several merit badges and pinned the Star rank on my ribbon. There wasn’t much space left on the ribbon and I wore it with pride.


After the next summer camp which, thanks to a snowy winter and rainy spring, was held without an issue, Dude received many merit badges and pinned the red heart of the Life Scout on my ribbon. Again, that winter we went to Durango for the Polar Express ride and Adam became more obsessed with the Strater Hotel. He convinced his dad he should build that as his Boy Scout Eagle Project. Dear Hugsband and I weren’t convinced, but he was determined.


Within a month, he had designed the model and received enthusiastic approval from the hotel…worked twice as long to win approval for it…another two months for fund raising…another two months to recruit and manage helpers to build the model…by then end of July he was ready to deliver it to Durango.


The case donated by a friend and the model just barely fit in the back of our Jeep Rubicon with the seat down. We squeezed our luggage and bodies around it and held our breath each time there was a bump in the road. Six hours later, we pulled in front of the Strater Hotel and could tell that the employees’ expectations weren’t too high. But when Adam opened the back door of the Jeep and the first employee saw the model, he was impressed and ran inside to get more help.


Dude and dear Hugsband spent an hour or so making sure the model was set up perfectly. Just enough time to be ready for a reporter from the Durango Herald. Dude handled the interview like it was an everyday event. It was fun to watch people passing the model and doing double-takes. Before we went up to the room the hotel provided for us, many people stopped and shook Dude’s hand.


So, last Saturday, at Dude’s Eagle Scout Court of Honor, four and a half years after his Boy Scout journey began, he pinned a silver “Eagle Scout Mom” pin on my ribbon. I didn’t expect to be so emotional about it. The little boy who pinned the first Boy Scout pin on my ribbon has grown into a young man much taller than I and so full of potential.


Next time you find yourself in the southwestern corner of Colorado, look at the Strater Hotel and remember the boy who gave his mom the ribbon full of jewelry she will cherish forever.

te Jewelry EVER

I have several pieces of jewelry I cherished, in no specific order, prior to February 27, 2016:

My engagement and wedding band set;

The Cartouche my parents bought on a jog through Egypt on one of their Holy Land trips;

A Linde Star ring I bought with money I received after my college graduation;

A Precious Moments pin I got when our son was born;

A necklace made by Alisha Stamp when I accompanied her son at a recital;

My high school class ring;

A pair of earrings my step, Becca got me one Christmas.


But last Saturday I received a pin that puts one piece of jewelry at the tippety-top of my list.

Rewind to November 2011 when our son was old enough to join the Boy Scouts. After he completed his first merit badge (chess) at his first lock-in, I received a red, white and blue ribbon and Dude pinned a Fleur de Lis, the symbol of the Boy Scouts on my ribbon. I was unimpressed at the time and so out-of-touch with the Boy Scouts that I had him put his badges on the wrong side of the sash.


The next summer, dear Hugsband decided it was time for Dude to try summer camp, and Dude survived the week with a lot of encouragement from his scout master. At the time he was not convinced the merit badges he earned were worth the time away from his dog Krypto. The boys were not allowed to have a campfire because of fire danger. One day while he was at camp, the temperature was in the upper nineties and humidity in single digits.


Dude came home from camp the day I had some college friends over. We had reservations to go to a Colorado Springs’ tradition, The Flying W Ranch, that evening. But as some people stood on the deck, grilling, they saw a plume of smoke to the west which became visible fire just a few miles west of us and by the time we would have left for the dinner reservations, the recording for the organization said, “We have evacuated due to the forest fire.” Over the next few days, smoke scented the area and a group from a Christian camp spent their camp at our church and provided much needed xeriscaping, since watering plants was restricted. Seventeen days later, when the Waldo Canyon fire was contained, two people had died, nearly 350 homes were destroyed and tens of thousands evacuated, we were sure we’d seen the worst thing possible in our city. That December, Dude pinned the Tenderfoot Fleur de Lis and the Second Class “Be Prepared” pin on my ribbon and more merit badges on his sash.


The next summer, 2013, Dude had grown and was ready for summer camp. On Tuesday before his camp, as I drove him to a violin lesson, I saw a plume of smoke directly north.

“No, we can’t have another fire,” I thought. As I waited for his lesson, I received an email from our church asking us to pray because several of our pastors and thousands of people were being evacuated from the Black Forest area just north of town. By the time Dude’s lesson ended, the sky was gray and the smell of smoke filled our nostrils. From our deck, we could again see smoke and flames just a few miles north of us. Scout camp was delayed one day until the area across from the Camp Dobbins was contained. Again there were no campfires, but at the next troop court of honor, in addition to merit badges from camp, Dude

pinned my fourth and the First Class “Be Prepared” pin on my ribbon.


During the Black Forest fire, trucks from Samaritans’ Purse parked in our church parking lot for weeks. The food pantry was expanded and Dude and I worked there as often as week could, not just for the Boy Scout required service hours.


That November we went to Durango, Colorado for a long weekend and to ride the Polar Express train. Dude thought that was cool, but he became obsessed with a hotel in the town, The Strater Hotel. “I could build that out of Lego,” he said repeatedly. In December, he received several merit badges and pinned the Star rank on my ribbon. There wasn’t much space left on the ribbon and I wore it with pride.


After the next summer camp which, thanks to a snowy winter and rainy spring, was held without an issue, Dude received many merit badges and pinned the red heart of the Life Scout on my ribbon. Again, that winter we went to Durango for the Polar Express ride and Adam became more obsessed with the Strater Hotel. He convinced his dad he should build that as his Boy Scout Eagle Project. Dear Hugsband and I weren’t convinced, but he was determined.


Within a month, he had designed the model and received enthusiastic approval from the hotel…worked twice as long to win approval for it…another two months for fund raising…another two months to recruit and manage helpers to build the model…by then end of July he was ready to deliver it to Durango.


The case donated by a friend and the model just barely fit in the back of our Jeep Rubicon with the seat down. We squeezed our luggage and bodies around it and held our breath each time there was a bump in the road. Six hours later, we pulled in front of the Strater Hotel and could tell that the employees’ expectations weren’t too high. But when Adam opened the back door of the Jeep and the first employee saw the model, he was impressed and ran inside to get more help.


Dude and dear Hugsband spent an hour or so making sure the model was set up perfectly. Just enough time to be ready for a reporter from the Durango Herald. Dude handled the interview like it was an everyday event. It was fun to watch people passing the model and doing double-takes. Before we went up to the room the hotel provided for us, many people stopped and shook Dude’s hand.


So, last Saturday, at Dude’s Eagle Scout Court of Honor, four and a half years after his Boy Scout journey began, he pinned a silver “Eagle Scout Mom” pin on my ribbon. I didn’t expect to be so emotional about it. The little boy who pinned the first Boy Scout pin on my ribbon has grown into a young man much taller than I and so full of potential.


Next time you find yourself in the southwestern corner of Colorado, look at the Strater Hotel and remember the boy who gave his mom the ribbon full of jewelry she will cherish forever.


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©2020 by Author Loni Moore.