The California Community Service Trip checks in from Los Angeles.
Wow- what an amazing adventure we are having here in California! This is an incredible group of trip members; they have bonded so quickly and it is so fun to do service projects and tour Los Angeles together! It seems like our trip has already been far longer than five days because we have packed in so many memorable moments! After arriving at LAX on Monday morning, we spent the afternoon getting to know each other, getting familiar with the UCLA campus, and playing some sports. Matt and Danielle led the pack in ultimate Frisbee… perhaps they will be attending UCLA on an ultimate Frisbee scholarship! After dinner, Jenna and David showed us all that impressive bowling skills must run in the genes, because both cousins won their games with ease! On Tuesday, we rented cruiser bikes at Hermosa Beach and spent a fabulous two hours cycling up the path beside the beach. We had a great picnic lunch on the beach, after which Callen reminded us of the childhood pleasures of playing in the sand! That night, we drove through Beverly Hills and had dinner in Hollywood.
On Wednesday, we had our first day of community service at the Boys and Girls Club in Santa Monica. Tara and Birké ran a marathon jump rope session with a bunch of the 11 year olds while Jenn and Danielle quickly got to know some of the younger girls and really connected with them as mentors and friends. Every single trip member got truly involved, playing with the kids and getting to know them. Thursday and Friday were also full days of action at the Boys and Girls Club. On Friday, Cassie and Dianne helped a very exuberant group of kids make vanilla ice cream from scratch – very messy but very fun! It has been so great to arrive each morning and see the excitement in the faces both of our trip members, and of the kids from the Boys and Girls Club. It will be very sad to leave there after our final day of community service.
To top that all off, the trip members have also made a point of publically humiliating us, the trip leaders, by singing Happy Birthday to Paul each and every night and making Cayleigh dance with the crazy street mimes at Santa Monica Pier last night. Of course, Cayleigh was no match for Abby and her funky dance moves!
We are soon heading to Venice Beach to enjoy some well-deserved down time, and to enjoy the beautiful scenery. We are also going to spend some time planning crafts and games to run with the kids at the Orange County Rescue Mission – we are hosting a Fourth of July party.
We couldn’t have picked a more amazing group of trip members who are so willing to get involved elbow deep in the community service, and who also spend their free time laughing and having such a blast together!
Cayleigh and Paul
The Westcoast Blogger