Sunday, February 23, 2014

Hello!

Hey everyone,
       Wow, it's been a while since I have last posted.... almost a year! And so much has happened. For starters, I graduation from my semester in June. And said good bye to my semester family. I still talk to most of them every week. I am so grateful to have done Kroka's semester. I learned and experienced so much! Here is the link to our blog we kept if you are interested in seeing how we ended semester http://krokavermontsemester2013.blogspot.com/ 

Summary of the past 11 months
After graduating from semester the summer and fall flew by. I worked on my families farm with our 3 apprentices. It was nice to be put right to work after semester so that I wouldn't be sitting around and thinking about semester and the people I miss. I dried veggies, fruits and herbs again all summer, and sold them at the common ground fair! Again all the money I made went to my Kroka semester I had completed. It was so much fun as usual.  But by the beginning of fall I was feel antsy and almost bored with my life. I was craving adventure. It's not like I didn't have enough work to do! because I always am running around the farm. I just missed being on semester and moving to a different place everyday, seeing new things and challenging myself. I couldn't figure out what it was that I could do to be content, but I knew one thing, I needed to find some adventure to do to replace being bored. 


Sunday, April 7, 2013

Kroka!! Northwoods update

    Hello all!! I have been on semester for 3 months!, I have skied the whole length of vermont, about 300 miles and I am 3 miles from canada in a place called Northwoods an outdoor wilderness center. I have learned so much on this trip and can't wait to come home and share all that I have learned with my friends and family. This weekend is parent weekend, my whole family is here and I am sharing them my Kroka family with them. If you want to follow my semester here is our blog that is updated weekly. http://krokavermontsemester2013.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

November update !

Hi everyone!
       I hope everyone is doing well! I am getting more excited everyday for my trip, less then 6 weeks from now I will be off to Kroka living a very different life then I am now.
         I just got a wonderful donation from my diabetes insulin pump company Animas, I am so happy and excited to have there donation and support along my trip, I really want to show other kids/teens with diabetes that they can still do all their dreams even with diabetes and this is a great way to start.
             I just sent out my 2nd and final letter to all my friends and family, explaining to them where I am at with fundraising and my trip. Donations have still been coming in, Thank You everyone for your support on this wonderful and exciting trip. Today I am writing thank you letters from donations in November, if you haven't received a thank you, please know its coming!!
        As January 4, 2013 comes closer I am starting to realize how much I will miss my life I'm living right now, I will miss my family so much and wonder how they are doing along my whole trip, I will miss my farm and all the animals on it, I will miss my friends so much, I have such a wonderful group of friends who I love and they support me through everything, Something I will miss a huge amount is swim, I have swam on a swim team since I was four and have never missed one part of it, I'm hoping cross country skiing will keep my need for physical activity at bay. So above I have written how much I will miss everyone and everything while I'm gone, but what I have said is how great this trip is going to be for me, I wil come back so educated and so fit from skiing, I will have learned how to sleep without a bed and how to find water in the middle of winter. I am excited to see of my views of things will have changed when I come back.

Well thats all for now, I hope everyone is well! and having a great start to the holiday
~kenya   

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Kroka pre-semester trip!!

  This past weekend I went on a pre trip weekend at Kroka. The weekend was to meet all the teachers and other students that are going on the trip talk about what we will be doing on the trip and just learning a bit about the other people we will be spending 6 months living with, creating a family. 
        The weekend was very fun! I got there Friday afternoon, need chores, met most everybody and had dinner. I forgot how wonderful Kroka food is, it is filling, healthy, and tastes great! We hold hands and sing a song before every meal and then all get our food and don't start eating until everyone is served. The other students are great and I feel like I know everyone so well already! I think that we will all be able to work together and support each other very well along the semester. Saturday we woke up before the sunrise and started chores in the dark and watched the sun warm the sky and make the frost on the Kroka fields sparkle, after breakfast we did some more chores until after a yummy lunch. Saturday afternoon we had a fitness test just to see how for our own personal use how fit we were, Lu the semester teacher had us do push ups and sit ups and then go and run for 30 mins, after the run we had to swim in the pond which was very cold since it is almost November...it wasn't too bad since I have been swimming in the lake behind my house almost everyday!! 
           Sunday our parents came and we all got our very long and detailed packing list and went over it for over 2 hrs, I realized that there were lots of things I needed that would help make the winter part of the semester easier. The cost of all the winter equipment comes to over $1000! basically a lot of money. Adding that to my tuition cost I still have a bit of fundraising to do. 
            If anyone would like to make a donation towards my equipment list or Tuition that would be wonderful!! or if anyone knows of some big company that would like to be my sponsor you can give them my contact info. 
          Thank you everyone for reading my blog and giving me your support, I couldn't do this trip without you. 
Have a great Halloween !!

My Contact info 

Kenya Whitehead
538 Augusta rd 
Belgrade ME 
04917
(207) 495-2593 
trek4kenya@gmail.com 

Newspaper article!!

Hi Everyone!!
       I hope everyone is have a lovely fall, fall is my favorite time of the year, I love how farm work slows right down so I can concentrate on other things...like getting ready for my winter xc skiing semester with Kroka Expeditions!! I have been working on quite a bit of fundraising and trying to get my story out there wherever possible.
         A few weeks ago I was in the newspaper in Central Maine the article was in the woman's quarterly section, the article was very well put together by Nancy McGinnis for writing it. The article talks about my trip and how I will mange my diabetes and my back injury on the trip and how I am worried about my family while I am gone. Here is the link in case you missed the article..... http://specialsections.onlinesentinel.com/SS/Page.aspx?secid=125154&pagenum=17&sstarg=&facing=false&
              I go to farmers market in Waterville with my mom every week and its quite exciting to have people come up to me with a donation for my trip or just want to talk about my trip. I love talking to anyone and everyone about it.
           So my Birthday was last week and I received some donations from my family and friends instead of birthday present which is wonderful, thank you everyone!! My total that I have raised is almost $4000, so im getting there slowly but surely.

Until next time everyone, I hope everyone is well!!!

~kenya

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Getting Ready!!!

When I first found out about Kroka and then was accepted into it my family was really excited for me. My family loves the outdoors and we spend a huge amount of time on it. So I thought I was going to be prepared enough for my trip but my mom at this great idea to take several trips throughout the next year to get myself ready. So we started planning lots of trips for my family and I or just myself to get ready for my trip.
         It all started with 5 days of winter camping at Kroka in February (totally not related to my semester in January. That was the first time I went to Kroka and met a lot of faces I now know very well and who will be my teachers on the semester. There was very little snow for us and we couldn't ski out to the camp we would be staying at so we hiked out. We spent 4 nights in tents just like the one I will be sewing before we head out on the trail on the semester, they had stoves and fir floors and kept pretty warm. I learned a lot on that trip of what would be useful on the semester for my diabetes and such. The 1st night my left my blood sugar test kit out of my sleeping bag and when I went to test in the morning It wouldn't let me test because it was so cold, so the rest of the time I my test kit spent the night keeping warm in my sleeping bag. These sort of things are very important for me to know before going on the semester.
        The next trip my family planed was the Bow River Trip I have a post on that one. I learned a lot on that trip about canoeing ( half of my trip will be canoeing). We portaged and spent some time in moose land for 5 days. I learned how to steer in the back of the canoe and learned to enjoy it.

      In September  I went to the Allagash with 4 Maine guides and a very special person to my family Ray Reitze to guide us all. Ray is very connected to the Kroka family and will help us make canoe paddles. I don't think I have ever learned so much in such a short time and had so much fun. I learned to read the sky and water to chose what path of water to take. I also learned an alternative to paddling using a very long pole, you stand up in the back of the canoe and use the pole to steer and control the canoe. That was the longest I have been away from a Rite Aid ( for my diabetes supplies) or a doctor or hospital, it was almost like a test for myself to see how I handeld my diabetes myself. It went very well I took very good care of myself and feel confident about my semester trip and my diabetes.

            My family has no more trips planed except for maybe the random winter sleepover in the tepee in the field  this winter. But I am busy getting my body ready for my trip/winter. I have started sleeping outside almost every night now and will be until I leave on January 4. I am also trying not to wear shoes unless I am going off the farm. I walk very early in the morning on the cold frosted grass and play soccer for a few hours. It's been getting easier to do now the first few mornings I wanted to run back in the house and put on my sneakers. I also am trying not to out to many layers to fast, most days here it no more then 67 or so and I haven't retired my shorts yet and don't plan to until November. I don't want to go to Kroka unprepared and barely able to handle the cold. I am also working out and getting as much exercise as possible from running and raking leaves to stacking wood and do my farm chores. Tonight I also start swim which is exciting.

            So while I am busy preparing myself for Kroka I hope everyone is having a lovely fall.

Thank you everyone for  reading my blog ~Kenya

Here are the links to Kroka and article wrote about me!

http://www.kroka.org/semester/semester_vermont.shtml


Common Ground Fair!

Hi everyone!, I hope your fall has been as wonderful and busy as mine.
         I have been drying fruits veggies and herbs in my solar dryer that I bulit myself, since August.
          I have dried tomatoes, herbs, apples, and lots of other yummy things in it. I was drying all this to sell at the Common Ground Fair hoping to make some more money for my trip.
        The week before the fair was hectic, most of the time I didnt get to bed until 2 or 3 in the morning I dried fruits like crazy and packaged everything. I guess all my hard work paid off because I sold out Friday in the Youth Enterprise Zone at the fair, I made a great profit...over $700!, my friend Gillian helped me out all day selling and talking about my trip, Thank you Gillian!!
        I am still selling dried apples, apple chips, herbs and soup mixes in my moms farm stand and hoping to sell it other places too. If anyone would like to order some I am taking orders and mailing them until Christmas, if you are interested please email me at trek4kenya@gmail.com.
     Donations have been trickling in slowly, Thank you so much for everyone that has made a donation, I am so grateful to you and I know I couldn't get this done without you! I have string hanging across the whole length of my office and every time I receive a donation I hang the card or persons name up on it, it is a great reminder to know that I have all of your support in this. Today I just sent another large sum of money to Kroka, I am getting closer to my goal everyday and am getting so excited for this trip.
    Thank you Everyone for reading my blog and keeping up with my fundraising.

~ Kenya