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May/June 2014

SC Teens Read teen experiences about taking risks and trying new things. Ride 2014 Winter Camp HighRopes Course

21 Things To Do Before Turning 21

Features: Personal Stories Contributors and more.

Ride 2014: Alive ~

John 10:10 ~

“The thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy. I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”

February 13-17, 2014 Snowbasin Resort

Read my story in this

Ogden, Utah

issue on pages 16-17.

The Promo and Full Trip Video’s are viewable on youtube and vimeo. Go to Foundation High School Ministry’s facebook page for the links. 2

Moonlight Stroll I’m walking on the smooth sand of the beach. The air around me is misty and mysterious. The smell of spring dawns on me. The sky is a very light shade of blue and gets darker, turning into purple then red as a rainbow of colors forms on the horizon, Setting the tone for the beautiful sunset. Appearing in sight is the moon glimmering down on the ocean as it ripples and soothes me with it’s sweet and relaxing song of water. I sit and look up at the night sky Gazing at the magnificent stars. The sky is like a painting ,so beautiful. This is the perfect time to take a walk on the beach. This I call my moonlight stroll.


Editor’s Bio

Cassie Sherman I am an 18 year old senior at St. Margaret’s. I have gone to SMES all four years of high school and while I wouldn’t consider myself the biggest risk taker, I can say that I have taken risks and tried new things that I think were worth it and taught me a lot about myself and the world around me. Some of the new things I tried in high school include being apart of the behind the scenes stage crew for the fall play my freshmen year, running for asb and playing soccer during my sophomore year, starting and running my own club junior year and being a part of yearbook staff senior year. I have learned a lot from these experiences and I am glad I took the risk of trying something new every year of high school. I am excited to see what new opportunities there are for taking risks in the future. Being able to take risks, even if they are small ones is an important part of life. 4

What is an ISP? An ISP is an independent senior project for high school seniors at St. Margaret’s Episcopal School in San Juan Capistrano, California. The ISP is a graduation requirement and is a project that takes place during the last three weeks of the school year. Each senior chooses from either an internship project, a community service project, a travel project or creative project in order to transition from high school to college and takes the place of classes. ISP’s give seniors the opportunity to gain experience, skills and connections in an area that is interesting to them and allows them to build on what they have learned in their classes.

Why SC Teens Magazine? I chose to do a creative ISP because I am very interested in the arts subjects including writing and photography. Some of my experiences include submitting articles to Teen Ink Magazine and other creative writing websites, taking photography classes and being on yearbook staff this year. I also enjoy reading teen vogue and that was one of my main inspirations for wanting to make my own magazine. Also, with my combined interests of reading, writing and photography and my observation that self publishing online has become increasingly popular, I saw the opportunity to try something new and make my own magazine while getting school credit for it. SC Teens is a magazine about risk taking and trying new things from the perspective of a Southern California teenage high school girl. Risk taking is very relevant in many teens and young adults lives as they try to figure out who they are and what their interests and skills are, especially when they go to college. That is also a lot of what the ISP experience is about. It requires risk taking in order to get the most out of the project. It is important to challenge yourself to try new things and take risks even though they won’t always end the way that you would like them to. 5

SC Teens Contents Summer Reading List: Along For The Ride and Before I Fall



The High Ropes Challenge




Bucket List: 21 Things To Do Before Turning 21


The High Ropes Challenge


Boomers and Broomball Adventure


Ride 2014: Alive Winter Camp


Summer Reading List Along For The Ride by Sarah Dessen Auden is an average high school student who spends most of her time studying and living an ordinary life. That all changes one summer when she meets Eli who teaches her how to live life on the adventurous side. With the help of her new friend, she explores her town at night and figures out how to find pleasure in the things she didn’t even know she was capable of doing. This book is not only entertaining but also has a positive message of learning to not take life too seriously and to enjoy the adventure and thrill of exploring the world around you and not being afraid to take risks. Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

Samantha Kingston is a popular high school girl who thinks she has everything. Her life turns upside-down when she dies in a car crash after a party but wakes up the next morning and has to relive that same day for a week. During that week, each time she relives that day she is able to learn more about herself and the people around her while she realizes just how valuable the things in her life are. This book represents the importance of being grateful for what you have because you never know when you might lose it all.


The High Ropes Challenge Numerous drops of rain fell rapidly on our heads as we travelled through the for-

est. The thought of lightning striking while we were at a place of vulnerability struck fear in some people. We waited in a circle on the logs as we were given instructions on how to participate safely then reassured that we would be safe. The counselors at Camp Stevens told us that we needed to make sure the straps on the sides of the harnesses were tight. We wore helmets to protect ourselves and to shield us from the rain. We also practiced ground rope team exercises. The climber would ask their rope teams, “Are you ready to support me?” And the team would respond, “We are ready to support you”. Then the climber would ask, “Climb?” The team would respond, “Climb on!” Then, they reassured us that we would be safe.

“ There was a point where I thought falling was imminent.”

Although our physical safety was secure, our mental state told us otherwise. From

below, looking up, everything looked high up in the air and yet, I didn’t feel that scared. On one end, there were two poles and in between were two wires that were in the shape of a V. Next to that was another horizontal pole, which was higher than the V. The object of that was for two people to walk across it, meet in the middle, hug and walk past each other to the other side. Next to that was another horizontal pole with vertical poles in the middle of the course. Two people would walk across with one person grabbing a pole then the next person grabs the first person’s hand and they continue until they get to the other side. The last one was a solo course where someone would climb to the top of a pole, stand on top of the pole and jump off the pole to grab onto a trapeze triangle before they are brought to the ground. The last one was called “The Leap of Faith”. I chose to go on the V because it was the only one where both partners are relying on each other the entire time instead of partially on your own. I went on the V with Delanie Melbon. Fortunately for me, she climbed first so I didn’t have to look down while she climbed or feel the pole wobble as she climbed up. 8

While at ground level, we were misled

into thinking it wasn’t going to be scary and that it would be easy. That changed however, when I started climbing up the tall pole to the top. It was like rock climbing but instead of a wall, I was climbing a pole. It was scary because the pole was wobbly. It was still stable and strong but it would move a little as I climbed, which didn’t help calm my nerves. I got stuck somewhere on the way up because I wasn’t sure which way to climb up and where to put my feet and hands. I was told how to get up the rest of the way and after a little bit of struggle, I managed to get up. When I got to the top, my partner was already there waiting for me. (to be continued on page 12)



What is your advice to anyone who is struggling with the decision to take a risk or not?

Madi Atkins

My advice for anyone that is struggling right now with whether or not to take a risk is to just go for it. Life goes by a lot faster than anyone even realizes. Life is too short to not take risks and live with regret of not doing something. Sure you may fail when taking risks but that’s life. Life isn’t about how hard you may fall sometimes but about how you get right back up. Besides, risks can be worth it and can help show you what you are truly capable of. Live life to your full potential. This picture of me trying something new, taking a risk is a perfect example of how you may fail sometimes but I didn’t give up. This picture was taken right before I ate it hard. But I got right back up and tried again and I succeeded. Live your life to the fullest, take risks because you don’t know where it could lead you if you never take a risk. - Madi Atkins


Mackenzie Hobert

Bucket List: 21 Things To Do Before Turning 21 21. Do what scares you the most 20. Re-invent your personality and give yourself a new nickname 19. Die your hair a different color or get highlights 18. Create your own blog 17. Give a pie to a homeless person 16. Give a total stranger a hug and a compliment 15. Be friends with someone you wouldn’t normally talk to 14. Invent something useful and unique 13. Be a movie extra or play a small role 12. Be on chopped teens edition 11. Design and sell your own clothing line 10. Start your own non-profit organization 9. Move to another state 8. Learn how to cook healthy, low cost meals 7. Travel outside the country 6. Write and publish a book 5. Win $100,000 4. Meet your favorite celebrity 3. Crowd surfing at a concert 2. Flash mob in a public place 1. Wind tunnel/sky diving


The High Ropes Challenge (Continued from page 9) At first, I wasn’t sure how to get onto the wire and let go of the pole. First, I stepped onto the wire and stood holding onto the pole and the wire, on my harness. With my left hand holding the wire, which was holding me up, my right hand was still on the pole, as I nervously looked at my partner. As I held onto the wire with my left hand, with my right I reached toward my partner and grabber her shoulder. From there, we gradually walked across the wire, holding onto each other for support. I continued to keep moving although I would periodically say out loud how trepidacious I was feeling. The fear within me was very real as my legs and arms were shaking the entire time and I am sure that others probably felt the presence of it also. I inched along little by little as the people below cheered me on for support. There was a point where I thought falling was imminent. That point was near the middle, although I didn’t know it was the middle when I was up there. I had to let go of my partner’s shoulders and go further away on the wires and grab onto her hands. I was shaking, the wire felt thin beneath my feet and I looked to the side where the pole was and saw how far from the pole I climbed. I felt like everything was wobbly and unstable.

“ I felt like everything was wobbly and unstable.” I got scared and started to crouch down on the rope to stable myself and kept repeating, “I’m scared. I’m scared”. Delanie agreed and kept encouraging me as the people below encouraged me and cheered me on. At first, I attempted to go further but quickly decided I was too scared to continue and said I wanted to come down.



brought me and Delanie down and we were congratulated on our attempt on the v for the high ropes course. I was still a little shaky but mostly relieved once I was back on the ground. After the high ropes was finished, everyone split into advisory groups led by one of the Camp Stevens counselors. My advisory group had to rush through the activity since it took half the time we had just to get to our spot.

We were told to choose three words to sum up our experience. The words were

to describe how we felt before, during and after the high ropes. My words were excited, scared and relieved. Then the instructor told us to each find a rock that we liked and that felt right in our hands. After we chose the rocks and held them, we were told to channel our fear and any negative energy into the rock then throw it. After we did that, we hiked back to our yurts. That activity where we each threw a rock, was meaningful and respresented the fear and dissapointment we had of either failing at the course, not trying hard enough and just the fear in general of being so high up in the air. It was a relief to be back on the ground after being on the high ropes course and to have flat and firm ground to stand on.

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Boomers and Broomball Adventure As a teenager, a big part of life is

figuring out who I am, what I am capable of and what my interests are. In order to do that though, I need to take risks and sometimes I have to do things that I am afraid of. One of the things that I am afraid of is rides at amusement parks that go upside and flip a lot. Last spring during my junior year of high school, I went to an Allnighter with my church’s high school group. That night we went to the irvine spectrum, boomers, ice palace ice skating rink and back to church.

At boomers, there was a ride that flipped upside down and that was all it did.

The name of the ride is Flame Thrower. My friends wanted to go on the ride and I didn’t want to look like a scaredy cat so I went on the ride too. The more I waited in line, the more scared I got. I was shaking and it didn’t help that the people who went on the ride before us were screaming so much. It made me think that the ride was much scarier than it actually was. We kept waiting and waiting and finally we were let on the ride. As we were lifted forward and backwards and flipped upside down, I was holding onto the handles on the sides of the ride very tightly. I was afraid and I screamed and screamed and I closed my eyes the entire time. I had this fear that I would fall out of the ride and that drove my fear of going on upside down roller coasters and rides in general. Finally though, the ride ended and I realized that it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. That’s the thing about risks; you just never know what will happen. 14

It was worth the risk and I am glad that I went on the ride. In fact, I went on the

ride at least three more times after the first time I went on it. Although I was afraid to go on it at first, I am glad that I did. That’s what risks are for. They teach you if something is worth doing or not and help you know what your limitations are. It was similar when I played broomball at ice palace with my church group that same night. In broomball, the players wear tennis shoes and sneakers on the ice and use sticks with nets to move a ball towards the other team’s goal. In a way it is easier than actual skating because you don’t have to balance on metal blades on the bottom of skates. It also can be slippier that skating though because you can run and glide easier making it easier to fall, which I did many times. Throughout the game, a lot of people were new to it and there were a lot of people falling. Despite that though, everyone had a good time and would agree that it was worth it to try this game and to learn how to improve their skills and game strategies. No matter what skill level the players were at it was definitely a worthwhile learning experience for everyone.



life so many people ask questions like what is the point of life, why are we here, what does it really mean to be alive. Most of the time, people either ask these question when their life is really tough or when they have so much sucess that they get bored. Life is amazing and each day is a gift but a lot of people don’t see it that way. They don’t have the background in life or the perspective that I have based on my experiences and what I was taught. While I realize that there still are many things that I don’t know about life as an eighteen year old high school senior, there are some things that I have been able to learn about how to really live life. In february of this year, I went to Utah with my church’s high school

Ride 2014: Alive

group for winter camp. The theme of winter camp this year was Alive and what it means to live a rich and fulfilling life. The main verse for this trip was John 10:10 “The thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy. I have come that they may have life and have it to the full.” The NLT version of the verse is, “The thief’s purpose is to steal, kill and destroy. My purpose is to give thema rich and satisfying life.” The trip was the first time I went to winter camp with the church I go to and I’m glad that I went. It was new and exciting and I took a risk while on the trip when I was learning how to skii. At first, it was hard and the boots I had to wear when I was skiing were uncomfortable, tight and hurt my feet. It was worth it though and as I kept sliding out of control and falling and getting caught in the net that separates the different slopes because it was fun and I was learning and slowly getting better. It wasn’t about how good at skiing I was, it was about learning how to get back up when I fall because if I never risk falling and failing then I will never learn how to get back up and get better after the fall. On the first day the skies were clear but on the second day of skiing, it was like a mini blizzard with snow flying in my face and I could hardly see. It especially got very windy as I gained speed going down the slope and it was scary and exciting all at once. When I was on the ski slope falling and turning and jumping off the skii ramps, I felt alive and fulfilled and the risk I took to learn skiing was worth it. 16

My experiences on the skii slopes during this trip made me feel more connected to the lessons that the speaker taught each night. On the first night, the message was about the rich life. In the theme verse, the speaker analyzed the theme verse John 10:10 and compared it to superhero movies where there is always a villian and a hero. The thief is the villain and Jesus is the hero. Also, rich in the verse represents the morning when you wake up and satisfying represents at night when you go to bed. The world is so lost about what life is really about and how to live a rich and satisfying life because, “ The world says that in order to have a rich life, you need to have things around you but Christ says that in order to have a rich life, you need to have things in you.” Those things inside can be memories, feelings, knowledge and intelligence, personality and character, faith, trust and courage. We need to have faith in Christ and have courage in ourselves to live the lives we were meant to live. We need to risk not being liked and not being popular in order to do what we know is right and “ the storms of life can take away what you have around you but can’t take away what’s inside you.” The speaker also said that our relationship with Christ needs to be an inside-out life not an outside in life which means that you don’t need to be a “good” or “sinless” person in order to go to Christ and then read the bible. It needs to be the opposite where you go to Christ first just as you are and then you can fix your life and make any changes. We aren’t perfect and Christ died for everyone and all we have to do is accept his free gift.

The second night, the message was about the satisfying life. The speaker said

that a satifying life is going to bed at night saying,” I am satisfied with today and what I have done and what Christ has done through me today.” You are satisfied when you can go to bed at night and rest. An important part of the message that night was the question,” Do you rest or are you restless when you go to bed?”. We are satisfied when our needs our met and the speaker went on to describe the four main needs for a satisfied life which are love, relationship, accomplishment and security. Our needs are un-met when we rely on the things of the world to fulfill us because we will never have enough to keep us happy but if we rely on Christ then our needs will be fulfilled and we will always have enough to satify us. The third night’s message was about the choice we have in who to follow; the villain or the hero? The passage of Matthew 6:19-34 was read also. In the message also, Transformers actor Shia Labeouf was asked by an interviewer, ” What is it like to have everything you could ever want?” He answered with, “I have everything I could want but I feel like I have a God-sized whole in my life.” He could have said giant or huge hole but the fact that he said God sized shows that he know what will lead to fulfillment and what he is missing and what a lot of people are missing. 17

May/June 2014

SC Teens

SC Teens  
SC Teens  

SC Teens is a magazine about risk taking written by a southern california teenager for an Independent Senior Project for high school.