Archive for July, 2012

The Lost Relay Race

Friday, July 27th, 2012

Jay got home from visiting his grandparents just in time to be part of the annual camp relay race.

Jay was the fastest runner of all the “Can Dos.” Willie, Bobby, and Hector were so glad to see him. Jay was going to be the fourth member of the “Can Do’ Street Community Center relay race team. They really needed Jay if they were going to win the relay race. They were racing against a four-boy team from Buddiville, the next town over from “Can Do”Street.

There was a lot riding on the race.”Can Do” Street teams had won for the past four years and year five meant a cash prize of $500 to support programs at the “Can Do” Street Community Center. Willie, Bobby, Hector and Jay wanted to be able to win the prize for “Can Do” Street and for the Community Center.

Willie, Bobby and Hector met every morning for weeks before the race to practice under the watchful eye of Coach Campbell. Jay ran track each day, on the Indian reservation, while he was visiting his grandparents.

raceThe day of the race was clear and sunny. It was not too warm. It was a good day for a race.

The stands were packed with parents and grandparents and kids from “Can Do” Street and Buddiville there to cheer on their teams.

The four-boy team from Buddiville arrived on time. The two teams met, shook hands and took their places on the track.

Hector was the first to run. He made good time in the first leg of the race. He was ahead of the boy from Buddiville when he reached the spot in the track where Bobby would take over and race the second leg of the race.

Bobby ran as fast as he could, but not fast enough to reach where Willie would take over the third leg of the race. The boy from the Buddiville team running against Bobby was really fast! Wow, could he run!  He got to his team member faster than Bobby got to Willie.

When Willie started out on the third leg of the race, the boy from Buddiville was in the lead. Try as he might, he couldn’t catch up with him and then pass him.

When Willie got to Jay, the boy from Buddiville was already way ahead. Jay ran harder and faster than he ever did before, but the boy from Buddiville was also a good runner and had a large lead over Jay to begin with.

The team from Buddiville won. Willie, Bobby, Hector and Jay felt so bad, but they practiced good sportsmanship and shook the hands of the boys from Buddiville and congratulated them on their win.

Coach Campbell followed the “Can Do” team into the locker room and had them sit down on a bench so he could speak with them .

“Did you all try your best, run your hardest, run your fastest?” Coach looked at the boys after asking his questions, waiting for them to answer.The boys all nodded yes. “Than there is nothing more you could have done,” said Coach.

“But we didn’t win,” said Hector. “Sometimes our best isn’t enough,” said Coach. “Sometimes the other team is better that us, faster than us, and they win. Sometimes we are better than the other team and we win. That’s just the way it is.”

“It hurts to lose,” said Bobby. “Yes, it does,” said Coach, “But remember, you are not losers…you lost a race, to a team that could run faster than you, that’s all. You’ve won before and you will win again.”

The boys sat quietly for awhile, letting what Coach said sink in, then they got up and followed the Coach outside to joining their family and friends for a barbeque.  To their surprise, the crowd started clapping when they saw them and yelling out, “Good race, good team work, good try.”

Willie, Hector, Bobby and Jay learned something that race day…winning isn’t always possible, but trying hard, working together and being good sports is what it is all about.

The Indoor-Outdoor Camp Overnight

Saturday, July 21st, 2012

campThe “Can Dos” had been looking forward to the camp overnight for weeks.

They were ready to sleep outdoors, in pup tents, just like the big kids do. Well, not exactly like the big kids do. Their camp overnight was going to be in the small park behind the “Can Do” Street Community Center, not in the woods. But still, it would be dark and they would have a camp fire and sit around toasting marshmallows and telling stories.

Yep, that was the plan. Then came the rain. There went the outdoor overnight; in came the indoor camp overnight.

Coach Campbell, who was in charge of the overnight, and a few of the camp counselors helped the “Can Dos” bring their gear indoors and set up their tents in the community center gym.

The “Can Dos” were disappointed and complaining about their bad luck. Coach Campbell had them stop what they were doing and form a sitting circle, on the floor, in the middle of the gym.

“Hey,” said Coach, “What is all the whining and complaining about? Are you going to let a little rain ruin a fun time with your friends”?

Hector was the first to answer, “We can’t toast marshmallows at an indoor camp. Then Annie said,”We can’t sit around a campfire.” Then Willie, who sometimes is a Gloomy Gus, said, “We might as well go home, there’s nothing to do here.”

Coach Campbell shook his head. He couldn’t believe what he was hearing! “I thought you were all “Can D0″ kids, kids who were positive and could make the best of things when they didn’t go exactly as planned.  Doesn’t anyone have any ideas about how to have fun at an indoor camp overnight.”?

Jay raised his hand and said, “We may not be able to sit around a fire, but, we can sit in a circle, like we are doing now. We can turn on the flashlights, that we brought with us for our outdoor camp overnight, and turn out the lights. Then we can tell campfire stories.”

Coach was pleased to see that most of the “Can Dos” were nodding in approval at Jay’s idea. With that, Bobby raised his hand and said, “We can use our flashlights to make hand puppet images on the wall. We can all focus our flashlights on the same place and each of us can take turns making a hand puppet on the wall.” There were more nods of approval.

Hector was still concerned about food at the indoor camp, asking “What are we going to eat?”

Coach Campbell laughed and answered,” We are going to play grab bag snack and trade.” The “Can Dos” all stared at him and Nellie called out,” How do you play that ?” Coach pulled a big bag out of his large camp bag and said, “I came prepared for a change in plans. I listened to the weather report this morning, then I went to the store and got a bunch of healthy, individual size snacks and put them in this bag. There are bags of air-popped corn, pretzels, 100 calorie oatmeal raisin cookies and other goodies.

When it is your turn, you reach in the bag and take one snack. When everyone has picked a snack the trading can begin. If you don’t get a snack you like or can trade for one, you can put it back and grab for a different snack. “

So, that is what they did; sat in a circle, grabbed and traded snacks, then ate them sharing camp fire stories and making hand puppets on the wall. Before they knew it, it was time for sleep.

Coach and the counselors walked the “Can Dos” to the restrooms before they got into their tents for sleeping.

Soon there was no more giggling or whispering. The “Can Dos” were asleep.

The next morning, Coach called everyone into the camp circle and asked if the “Can Dos” had a good time at the camp overnight. They all nodded yes.

Then Maria raised her hand and said, “Not only was it fun, but there were no bugs, and no sounds from critters that live outdoors to scare us at the indoor camp!

The Shake and Smoothie Contest

Sunday, July 15th, 2012

Shake and Smoothie

Members of the “Can Do” Street Chef’s Club held a shake and smoothie contest at the “Can Do” Street Community Center the other day.

Willie, Nellie, Maria, Bobby, and Arthur Jay got to be the judges. Grandma Hattie and Grandma Frances helped the “Can Do” Chefs Club members prepare those ingredients that required cutting up such as fruits and vegetables for each shake and smoothie.

It was a tough job…choosing a winner. Each of the judges had to drink a quarter of a cup of each shake or smoothie and there were 6 of them!

 The winner…Out Of This Whirled Shake

Preparation time: 5 minutes

Serves: 2

Cups of Fruits and Vegetables per Serving: .5

Ingredients:

½ medium banana, peeled and sliced
1 cup unsweetened frozen berries:
(strawberries, blueberries, and/or blackberries)
½ cup low fat (1%) milk or soft tofu
½ cup 100% orange juice

Place all ingredients in a blender container. Cover tightly. Blend until smooth. If mixture is too thick, add ½ cup cold water and blend again. Pour into 2 glasses and serve.

Delicious!

Shake and Smoothie information:

Each serving provides: An excellent source of vitamin C and a good source of folate and potassium.

Credit: Recipe courtesy of Produce for Better Health Foundation (PBH). This recipe meets PBH and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) nutrition standards that maintain fruits and vegetables as healthy foods.

Nutritional Information per Serving
Calories: 106 Carbohydrates: 23g
Total Fat: 0.9g Cholesterol: 3mg
Saturated Fat: 0.4g Dietary Fiber: 2g
% of Calories from Fat: 7% Sodium: 30mg
Protein: 3g

Camp Manners

Thursday, July 12th, 2012

camp mannersMiss Sue, the Director of the “Can Do” Community Center Camp, came into the crafts room and asked permission from the art teacher to address the “Can Dos”.

The “Can Dos” knew it was often not a good thing when Miss Sue asked to talk to them. It must mean that one or more of them were doing things, in camp, that needed to be corrected.

After Miss Sue said good morning, she said,”Boys and girls, I have received complaints from the camp janitor on the state of the girls and boys bathrooms.

I have also received complaints from the ladies who work in the cafeteria about the mess on the floor under the tables, and the food and wrappers left on the tables.

Let’s take time now to review how we are supposed to behave in both these areas. Let’s talk about bathroom manners and cafeteria manners. If we are not old enough to practice good manners in both these areas, maybe we are not old enough to be in camp.”

Then Miss Sue handed out two camp manners lists and said,”Let’s review these lists together.

Let’s start with the cafeteria list:

1. Don’t run in the cafeteria.

2. Say please and thank you when you order and receive your food.

3. Don’t cut in line while waiting to order on the cafeteria line.

4. Do not sit on the tables and don’t stand on the seats.

5. After you finish eating, clean off your place at the table and pick up anything you dropped on the floor.

6. Put your trash from the table and the floor in the trash can.”

Then Miss Sue turned to the bathroom manners list:

1. When you use the stall, close the door.

2. Flush the toilet when you are finished using it.

3. Take a piece of toilet paper, and use it to protect your hand from germs as you flush. Don’t flush with your foot!

4. As the toilet is flushing, throw the piece of toilet tissue into the toilet to be flushed away.

5. Make sure your clothes are properly zipped or buttoned or pulled up before you leave the stall.

6. Wash your hands with warm water and soap. Wash for at least 10 seconds (count to ten slowly).

7. Dry your hands with a paper towel.

8. Throw the towel in the waste basket after you use it.”

Miss Sue looked up from reading and asked,”Does everyone promise to practice these camp manners”?

The “Can Dos” all nodded, “We promise,” they all said.

Miss Sue smiled, thanked the art teacher, and went on to speak to the campers in the next room.