By: Allison B.
As Jason was rolled on to the field, his friends and family cheered and began to shake their shakers and bring on the applause. This was a very big and special day for him, and he just couldn’t wait for his turn. Athletes that had already taken their turn, showed off their medals proudly to the coming athletes and fans, excited as their family and friends greeted them at the edge of the field. The air was filled with excitement, smiles, and joy as Jason’s turn at the games began. He would be doing the 10 Meter Assisted Walk with his buddy, and also the
Tennis Ball Throw with one of his trainers. He was ready for action! With his trainer by his side, he smiled while the instructions were given, and the tennis ball was delivered to him. He prepared for his first throw, an excited grin spreading across his face as the ball flew down the lines. When he had finished, he chanted “More, More, More!!!” He never wanted this day to end!
12-year-old Jason Dorn has Cerebral Palsy, which means that he can’t walk or talk well. He also has a seizure disorder and visual impairment. He spends much of his life in a wheelchair or will sometimes lie on the floor after school to watch his favorite Major League baseball team play on TV but this day was his turn to throw the ball in front of fans. This was his first time competing in the Georgia Special Olympics at Emory University’s Athletic Complex. He has also participated for four-years in the county Special Olympics.
High five J-Man!!!
The Special Olympics is an international organization that changes the lives of many children and adults with intellectual disabilities. They do year round sports for over one million people and in 180 different countries. The first International Special Olympics was opened in 1968. Special Olympics Georgia (SOGA) started in 1970, when they held their first track and field event under the Special Olympics banner and started off with just 500 athletes and has grown to more than 23,000, in the past 41 years that it has been available. Here in Georgia, there are five state games and several more events each year.
So how can Girl Scouts get involved in Special Olympics Georgia? There are a couple of ways that you can volunteer. You can help make things like shakers and posters to help cheer on the athletes. For the shakers, all you need to do is to take a one liter or one-and-a-half liter sized recycled plastic bottle and fill it with a little bit of rice and macaroni, and then donate it to SOGA for use at the games. This is a good project for whole troops, because SOGA needs a lot of them. They use them to help make noise to cheer on the athletes as they compete and get their medals.
Jason’s #1 fan: Me!!!
You can also make cards or posters for any of the athletes, which will make the athletes, feel good. My family made a poster for Jason. The posters can be for one athlete in particular, all the athletes, or can have inspirational quotes, like "If you can dream it, you can do it." ~ Walt Disney.
Wendy Bigham, of SOGA, says, “ The best thing to do to volunteer is to be a fan in the stands at the state games, but also have a chaperone or adult (volunteers under 16 must be accompanied by an adult!). Being a fan in the stands is one of the best volunteer opportunities we offer. You get to spend whatever time you have during the games weekend at your favorite competition cheering on athletes with special needs that may not already have their families or friends cheering for them. Everyone needs someone to cheer them on and support them. It would be great to have the Girl Scouts supporting the athletes.”
So what does SOGA mean to Jason Dorn? Jason loves SOGA because he gets to play games, hang out with friends, and have a lot of fun. While I was interviewing Jason, he was excited to be able to watch the Yankees play when we were finished! His sister, Lexi, says “It’s fun how we get to hang out with my brother and kids like Jason too. I usually cheer on Jason and watch other kids and see a lot of the other activities. It’s nice and it’s fun to watch everyone do stuff that they wouldn’t be able to do in other sports. I love being able to watch my brother do things that he normally can’t do!”
I can do it!!!
His mom also says “Jason loves SOGA and gets very excited about events, proud of his accomplishments, and he gets to experience true joy. He loves support from his fans and we love to give it to him!”
Back at home, Jason’s prized possessions are his baseball bats and baseball cards. He also has a trophy shelf where he keeps all of his trophies and medals that he wins in the Special Olympics. Baseball is his passion, and thanks to Special Olympics, he gets to be a
player too, out on the field, in front of HIS fans.
When I was there at the games, I could see that all of the other athletes were sharing Jason’s pride and joy. They all had smiles on their faces, and so did I. Watching the athlete’s reactions to the games and winning their medals makes me realize that SOGA is a wonderful organization.
The Special Olympics oath is “Let me win. But if I cannot win, then let me be brave in the attempt”, and Jason and his fellow athletes have definitely lived up to it.
Are you concerned about how much sleep you get, how many calories you consume, how active you are, or your overall health? I am, First Lady Obama is, and you should be too. The reason is the decisions we make today can affect our health tomorrow.
Sleep is important for good health. Pre-teens and teens should sleep about 9-11 hours in one night. Sleeping is very important to the brain. If you don’t get enough sleep, when you go to school, you will be drowsy, and will have trouble paying attention. Sleep is something natural that all humans do at some point. Staying awake until 11:00pm on a school night does not make you cooler than going to sleep at 8:30pm. Don’t go to sleep when you’re sleepy, go to sleep at a reasonable time for your age.
The amount of calories a person should eat depends on their weight, age, and height. It is recommended that girls from 9-13 years old should eat no more than 1600 calories per day. It’s always wise to read food labels and monitor the sugar content. There are lots of sugar free items, such as sugar free popsicles, which can save on both fat and calorie counts.
Exercising is very important for the heart to pump blood, especially to your brain, and for good cardio. If you don’t exercise now, your heart and your health can suffer later in life. Luckily, most schools have a physical education class. In addition to school activities, exercise on your own by swimming, cycling, or even walking your dog. Some types of exercises are yoga, lifting weights, stretching, etc. Exercising is also a good way for people to watch their weight.
Fluids are important to overall health and water is one of the essentials of life. Without water for three days we would die. On average eight-glasses of water each day is healthy. Too much water in one day, such as 50 gallons a day, would flood and drown your heart. Not enough water causes dehydration and headaches. Don’t forget about water found in fresh fruits such as strawberries and pineapple. They are 40% water.
When we think about the future, let’s not forget our health. Eating right, being active, and resting can help keep our bodies and minds in great shape for years to come!
I know many of you reading don’t know how to prepare for your destination. You don’t know what you to wear or how much to workout before your trip. For some destinations you will have to do some exercise. Don’t worry; it’s nothing serious just some weight lifting for hikes or running a mile each day or walking a mile. Never fear, here is some more exciting exercises to do while you’re getting ready to go on your fabulous adventure!
- Gorilla Grinder: For the Gorilla Grinder, get in pushup position and start to bend your arms. Once you start doing pushups, pat your stomach with one hand. Touch your stomach once as you go down and once you go up. Be sure to switch your arms.
- Treasure Hunt: For this exercise you will need to run. Don’t worry it is fun for girls who don’t like to run. First you run around and hide things places about a mile from your base. Then make a map and run with your friends to find the hidden things! It is very fun.
- Big Bags: Okay, I know this one sounds scary but if you have to take a big bag to Costa Rica or the Galapagos islands, this is important. You hike on these destinations and will need to carry your bag. So here is what you do! First get a big heavy bag. Second find a nice big hill. Third climb up and down that hill for ten minutes, twice a week. I know it sounds hard but you have to do these things to get fit for your destination!
Okay, so that is your 2011-2012 suggested workouts!! Thank you for reading and don’t miss Jessica’s article about her trip to Costa Rica in the Totally Girl Scouts section of this LGG.
By: Kayla T.
Avoiding the Doritos, Cheetos, and Fritos for snack? Tired of the same candy bars and Ritz? Well, look no further; here on this section Lime Green Giraffe we have two healthy snack recipes. One takes no time at all and uses basically any snack ingredients; the other however, should only be done with a parent. The first recipe is trail mix and the second is a special version of granola. Make sure you tell and show your parents anything you want to make.
The trail mix is simple and can be done on the go. It can be made with or without the nuts; you would just add more pretzels. Yum!
The granola is a harder recipe and an adult should always be watching. The nuts can once again be substituted or completely removed.
Enjoy these two fabulous snacks!!!!
By: Kayla T.
Granola with Apples, Cinnamon, and Raisins
- 2 cups bran flakes
- 2 cups dry old-fashioned oatmeal
- ¾ cup dried apple pieces
- ½ cup golden raisins
- ¼ cup slivered almonds
- ¼ cup honey
- ¼ cup applesauce
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 325°F
(Remember to ask your parents for permission to use the oven.)
- Lightly coat a baking sheet with cooking spray.
- Spread almonds on sheet and bake for about 10 minutes. When done, the almonds should be golden and fragrant.
- Transfer immediately to a plate to cool.
- Increase oven temperature to 350°F
- Whisk together the honey, applesauce, vanilla, and cinnamon. Set aside.
- In a separate bowl combine oatmeal and bran flakes. Stir until well mixed.
- Add in honey mixture, hand toss combination. Don’t break apart the clumps.
- Spread mix evenly onto baking sheet.
- Bake about 30 minutes or until mixture is golden
- Remove from oven and cool slightly
- In another bowl combine baked mixture, the toasted almonds, apple pieces, and raisins. Cool completely.
- Store in an airtight container.
- Pretzel Sticks
- Mix the ingredients to fit your tastes and enjoy this fast snack!
By: Kayla T.
Looking for cheap school supplies for the school year? Well, look no further than the back-to-school sales at stores like Staples, Office Depot, and Wal-Mart. Wherever you find a deal, have fun shopping! Make sure to stock up for the next school year, too!
On March 11, 2011 at 2:46 PM Japan time, a magnitude 8.9 earthquake hit the entire east coast of Japan. The citizens knew this time of struggle was far from over because this was to be recorded as one of the most powerful earthquakes in the history of the world. Later in the week, day, month, hour, minute, or second something was bound to happen. Surely, it did.
Not soon after, a tsunami with nearly 30-foot waves hit the coast. This enraged storm had not calmed down quite yet, because more than 500 strong aftershocks hit the country. In the moments after the disaster, the official death toll stood at 413, while 784 people were missing and 1,128 injured. In addition, police said between 200 and 300 bodies had been found along the coast in Sendai, the biggest city in the area near the quake's epicenter.
After losing their homes, jobs, family members, and being buried in rubble, it has been made clear that this country cannot take much more. There have been the highest rank of relief troops sent out to try to help the people, but progress is coming along very slow. The missing, dead, and injured number keeps rising as workers remove the rubble from some of the hardest hit places such as Kesennuma, Higashimatsubara, and Sendai. The chancellor of Sendai is beginning to spread aid such as food and water all over the country, but still missing families.
The parents of 30 students at Kama Elementary School are missing. The teachers believe that the student’s ages eight-to-12 know their fathers and mothers are among the missing and will never again turn up at the gates of the school on the eastern outskirts of the town, but they do not complain. In addition, they try to keep media away from the children because they fear that even the sound of the door sliding open will create a false sense of optimism in the children. Instead, they wait patiently reading books or playing card games watched over by relatives and teachers. Many students left earlier from the school. The ones that went to the houses behind the building, probably survived, the ones that went the other way probably did not.
This earthquake and tsunami are not the only problem that eastern Japan has; the nuclear plants all over the region are shutting down, exploding, and leaking. The specific plant is the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant that exploded because its cooling pumps have shut down from the earthquake. The backup batteries that only had eight-hour charge were the only things that saved this plant, for now.
Japanese Prime Minister Kan wrote in an op-ed to Washington Post
”On March 11, Japan was hit by one of the most powerful earthquakes in recorded history. We are making all-out efforts to restore livelihoods and recover from the series of tragedies that followed the Great East Japan Earthquake. The disaster left more than 28,000 people, including foreign citizens, dead or missing.
Since March 11, Japan has been strongly supported by our friends around the world. On behalf of the Japanese people, I would like to express my sincerest gratitude for the outpouring of support and solidarity we have received from more than 130 countries, nearly 40 international organizations, numerous nongovernmental organizations, and countless individuals from all parts of the world. The Japanese people deeply appreciate the kizuna ("bonds of friendship") shown to us. Through this hardship, we have come to truly understand that a friend in need is a friend indeed.
Immediately after the earthquake, the United States, our most important friend and ally, provided swift cooperation. President Obama kindly called me to convey his strong commitment that the United States stood ready to provide all-out support to the Japanese people during this time of great difficulty. He reaffirmed that the relationship between our nations is unshakable. So many Japanese citizens, including myself, were enormously encouraged by these remarks. From an early stage in the response efforts, U.S. forces have diligently performed relief activities on multiple fronts as part of Operation Tomodachi (Japanese for "friendship"). The attitude that Americans have demonstrated during this operation has deeply touched the hearts and minds of the Japanese. Support has come from not only the government but also NGOs and countless individuals, in various forms of humanitarian assistance, search-and-rescue missions, charity events, and fundraising. We have also received full U.S. support in responding to the accidents at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, from providing equipment and other material assistance such as fire trucks and special protective suits, to dispatching nuclear experts and radiation-control teams.
I take very seriously, and deeply regret, the nuclear accidents we have had at the Fukushima Daiichi plant. Bringing the situation under control at the earliest possible date is my top priority. Leading a unified effort by the government, I have mobilized all available resources to combat the risks posed by the plant, based on three principles: First, give the highest priority to the safety and health of all citizens, in particular those residents living close to the plant; second, conduct thorough risk management; and, third, plan for all possible scenarios so that we are fully prepared to respond to any future situations. For example, we continue to make the utmost efforts to address the issue of outflow of radioactive water from the plant into the ocean. In addition, the government has taken every possible measure to ensure the safety of all food and other products, based on strict scientific criteria. We have taken great precautions to ensure the safety of all Japanese food and products that have reached and will continue to reach markets. To ensure domestic and foreign consumer confidence in the safety of Japanese food and products, my administration will redouble its efforts to maintain transparency and keep everyone informed of our progress in the complex and evolving circumstances at the Fukushima Daiichi plant.
I pledge that the Japanese government will promptly and thoroughly verify the cause of this incident as well as share information and the lessons learned with the rest of the world to help prevent such accidents in the future. Through such a process, we will proactively contribute to global debate to enhance the safety of nuclear power generation. Meanwhile, regarding a comprehensive energy policy, we must squarely tackle a two-pronged challenge: responding to rising global energy demand and striving to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to combat global warming. Going forward, I would like to present a clear vision to the world, which includes the aggressive promotion of clean energy that may contribute to solving global energy issues.
The Great East Japan Earthquake and the resulting tsunami are the worst natural disasters that Japan has faced since the end of the Second World War. Reconstruction of the devastated Tohoku region will not be easy. I believe, however, that this difficult period will provide us with a precious window of opportunity to secure the "Rebirth of Japan.” The government will dedicate itself to demonstrating to the world its ability to establish the most sophisticated reconstruction plans for East Japan, based on three principles: first, create a regional society that is highly resistant to natural disasters; second, establish a social system that allows people to live in harmony with the global environment; and third, build a compassionate society that cares about people, in particular, the vulnerable. The Japanese people rose from the ashes of the Second World War using our fundamental strength to secure a remarkable recovery and the country's present prosperity. I have not a single doubt that Japan will overcome this crisis, recover from the aftermath of the disaster, emerge stronger than ever, and establish a more vibrant and better Japan for future generations.
I believe that the best way for Japan to reciprocate the strong kizuna and cordial friendship extended to us is to continue our contribution to the development of the international community. To that end, I will work to the best of my ability to realize a forward-looking reconstruction that gives people bright hopes for the future. I would wholeheartedly appreciate your continued support and cooperation.
Many think that Japan will not be able to recover from this disaster very easily and Japan agrees, but they believe that they will be able to come back stronger than ever when they do. Even though this disaster happened months ago, this country and our Girl Scout friends in Japan still need our help. The American Red Cross is accepting donations. Go to www.redcross.org
and find out how you can give. All and any support is needed!