Friday Session on Ageism

Hey it’s Hallie! I came early on Friday to find Team Top Chef cooking up their concoctions downstairs in the kitchen (which turned out to be yummy burrito-tacos) and a circle of coaches and some 1st and 2nd years trying to decipher Alice’s riddle.
“SuzypassesthedisctoBob,whothrowsittoJoe,whoeatsitandpoopsitoutandgivesitMarywhothrows-itintheairandbirdcatchesit. Who has it?”
“I do.” Most people figured it out, and some were told, but Calise was chronically stumped throughout our session on AGEISM.

Reducing our waste by using the plates we made at our first Friday session

Lani and Kathy led us in a stand-up exercise (we stood up when a statement applied to us) and some awesome discussions about how we see and feel ageism in our lives. We came up with examples such as between youth in school, towards the elderly, or adults not giving youth enough trust or independence. My multi-age group of four focused most on the latter. We thought that some adults don’t believe youth are capable of things that AGE-UP is proving we are and that people should always be given a chance to prove their maturity before they are judged. In a way all the 2nd years are already taking steps against ageism without knowing it!

Reflecting on the significance of who is standing up for a statement in the stand-up activity

After we had shared experiences and gotten ideas out there, each group wrote a rap about how we can stand up to ageism and performed it. There were some recurring themes, creative rhyming lyrics, and lots of laughs.

Tiffany gets excited about the discussion

Feeling “inspired,” “aware,” and “informed” (according to a one word check-out), we braved the cold run to Mercer so that we could play our favorite sport: Ultimate! We practiced a perfect mark, perfected our throws, and played some mini. Too soon we had to walk back and let our warm legs get numb again, but we ended on a sweet note with some donuts and pastries.

Fun Times with AGE-UP Second Years

Welcome back, all. It’s Amanda, again. Last Tuesday, we had the honor of being guinea pigs! Were we fed carrots and kept in cages? No…

Regardless, we were also lucky enough to have Nicole, a guest speaker from last year, join us. Unfortunately, to avoid spoiling everything for the first years, the details of the session will not be disclosed until Friday (don’t worry, it’ll be worth it).

After the session, we all got together for a white elephant gift exchange! With the gifts on a table, we circled up and chose numbers out of a toilet (use your imagination! – alright, it was a toy one). We then took turns unwrapping or stealing gifts. As boring as this post seems, we actually had a blast! In fact, here are some videos. Check them out!

AGE-UP Goes to UW

Welcome back, readers. It’s Amanda, again. This Saturday, AGE-UP went on its first-ever field trip to the University of Washington. There, we gathered in a classroom in the Mary Gates Hall along with a few members from Making Connections and the Dream Project.

Our host, Senait, began the day by engaging us in a poster activity where we split into groups and wrote down five main factors that could hinder our likelihoods of going to college. We were grouped with a Dream Project member who aided us in brainstorming likely obstructions. After we listed our factors, we also wrote solutions for each one. Once finished, we presented our posters and were praised by Senait for how shockingly amazing our solutions were.

After, the Dream Project members informed us of their college experiences and told us a bit of why they joined the organization. They were also kind enough to answer questions we were curious about. We ended the morning with pizza for lunch as Senait gave us a motivational speech to get us pumped for college.

With a few of us cramping(alright, maybe just me), we toured the UW campus, led by Olivia, a Dream Project member. To our misfortune, we were greeted by Seattle’s infamous chilly weather and death sprinkles. Regardless, we gazed in awe as we visited the Drumheller Fountain and crossed the Quad. In between, Olivia did a great job filling us in on the historical backgrounds of various buildings and pieces of architecture.

After the tour, we headed to the IMA fields to practice with the UW womens’ team, Element. With the air frigid and the turf damp, our practice began with a warm-up consisting of a steady two lap jog preceding plyometrics, hollywood squares, and agility

Once “gross”(or sweaty in Element speak), we dove into throwing drills and amazed the Element players with our throws and determination in the freezing weather. Finally, we teamed up with our Element buddies and split into four teams to scrimmage for the rest of practice. Although no clear team dominated, the high level of spirit and gameplay present certainly did.

After the scrimmage, our adorable first years, Colleen and Anisah, were given sweet Element discs as spirit awards for their hard work during the drills and scrimmage. We concluded the day in a large huddle cheering, “Element ultimate, ha!”.

Friday Session with Nutritionist Karen Woo

Hi everybody, this is Linda, a 2nd year of AGE UP, and the rest of the media group! Today, to start off the session, we ate a delicious meal cooked and provided by the 2nd years in the cooking committee led by Lisa. The meal was comprised of noodles and a lovely vegetable and meat sauce. The committee also provided pesto, steamed broccoli, and garlic bread. We were so lucky that to help us wash down the food properly, we had some calcium and protein enriched milk, yum.

In our discussion part of the program, we learned about the importance of calcium and protein for growing bones and muscles. Our guest speaker today was Karen Woo, a nutritionist, who educates groups about keeping their bodies healthy, especially for sports.

In the midst of learning about our bodies and what we considered “healthy,” we did an activity with legos of different size, which represented the health value of each item of food we consumed. We learned about the importance of eating the right balance of foods that would fuel our bodies to perform better, especially in sports. As a group, we also discussed the potential dangers of consuming unknown substances that as athletes, we might be pressured to ingest.

Toward the end of the discussion, while everyone left for the gym, the media group and some of the facilitators stayed back to clean up. While washing the dishes, we were advised to wash with hot water and half of the media group screeched in unison with the ecstatic preschoolers in the next room.

The AGE-UP Family Gets A Little Bigger

Greetings everyone, I’m Amanda, also an AGE UP second year. This past Friday marked the beginning of our winter sessions for first years (new participants). We kicked off the program with introductions within a HUGE circle (I’m talking a total of 50+ coaches, first years, and second years) to allow everyone to get familiar with their future family.

Shortly after, we chowed down on scrumptious pumpkin pancakes and a delicious medley of potatoes and other good sources of nutrition as we mingled and got to know each other better.

With our stomachs satisfied, we split into separate groups of four, each led by extremely awesome coaches where we all created our individual plates for future dining. We all used our artistic skills to personalize them by drawing pictures that pertained to inspirational quotes, frisbee, and just random things.

Later, we filled out some food allergy surveys for the Top Chef crew and began our first workshop of the program: Word Association.

We divided into our respective groups and rotated to posters around the room labelled “masculine”, “feminine”, “sport”, “athlete”, and “ultimate frisbee”. At these posters, we took a few minutes to write words that came to mind regarding each term. Upon completing the activity, we circled up and discussed the stereotypes and gender roles associated with the given terms on the posters.

With an hour and a half left in the session, we changed into our ulti-clothes, and got pumped for the ultimate portion of the program. To the horror of some and the delight of many, that included braving the jog from Jefferson CC to Mercer Middle School in the chilly weather (under the stars, at least!). From there, we got straight into plyometrics and throwing drills. We utilized the time to familiarize ourselves with each other and before we knew it, it was time to head back.

After the relaxing walk back, we concluded the session with a one-word check-out to express our feelings.


2nd Year Session with CRAVE

Hi, I’m Hallie! I’m an AGE-UP second-year. Tuesday was our third second-year session this year and it was YUMMY! We had four guests from CRAVE (Cultivating Radical Activism, Vitality, and Education), an organization that promotes food justice through awareness, who taught us about the food we eat and helped us make a wonderful Mexican feast.

We learned from Stephany about the first three vegetables to be cultivated in Mexico—corn, beans, and squash—and how they provided each other with necessary things to survive. We related this network of support to AGE-UP and discussed which role we each played in comparison to the plants. We then packed ourselves into the kitchen where our guests showed us how to cube and dice vegetables and make tortillas. Cooking talent and lack thereof was brought to light before we sat down to eat Spanish rice, beans, squash, tortillas, and pico de gallo.

After we had all served ourselves, the table became abruptly much quieter as we were all too busy chowing down on the wonderful, local, healthy, and cultural meal to talk.

Following dinner, Stephany educated us with her un-ending enthusiasm and passion about the difference between local produce and mass produced products with regards to their making, origins, sustainability, health, and how workers were treated. She exposed the harsh conditions of commercial farm labor and acknowledged unfairness in access to good food choices as being an issue of health and culture.

We ended the session with full bellies and a round of intentions, where everyone had something to say about what changes they could make in their lifestyle to support food justice.