The Watermelon Radish

The Watermelon Radish
A Kid's Point of Food

Friday, June 13, 2014


 Hello everyone!  So, next week I'm going to be getting on a plane and flying to New York, then to London and finally France for two weeks.  In France I'm going to be doing a two week art camp which is run by my dearest friends Bruce and Alisa.  I'm super excited, and can guaruntee many posts from my travels!  Before I leave, however, I'd like to leave you with something.

 On Monday, I graduated from 8th grade at Turning Point.  It was a wonderful occasion, and many friends and family joined me for it.  Each one of them made it truly special, I'm not going to bore you with a list of names.
To start, the Head of School (remember when that was me for a day?) said something about each of us. Then, we each gave a short poem about ourselves, the only guidelines were that we
1) had to include a line about our community
2) had to include a line about our family, because graduation is just as much about them as it is about the actual graduates
3) it had to include something beginning with 'my soul is'

So, I though that I'd share my poem with you...

Graduation Poem
   By: Kellen

My soul is a fiery chariot that never stops blazing
My soul is testing the boundaries
Holding a girl who watches the stars,
That’s where you’ll find me,
Looking out at nothing, but with me there’s always something
Always something to make me smile, full of joy
A bubble of emotion and a static wire crackling with life
See through my eyes, those common hazel eyes
Behind their brownish skies there’s a portal, spilling into our dimension everything from the one that I’ve invented
And all the writing that I’ve done up from the paper
And all the sketches and the pictures come to life,
See those rainbow sparks that crackle through the night
Those are the friends and family that form a firework,
my firework
And in the place I live, the land I’m from, they might not know my name, but soon they will, I’m sure of it
See the tiny girl with scrunchies in her hair
That was me at the beginning, how far I’ve come from there
To this place that is my home, and I won’t forget it in a lifetime
See the tiny fingers pointing to the stars
Years ago I caught them in droplets of crystal shimmers
The only girl who talks to the moon, and doesn’t fear what the sky will do to me
See how I’ve grown up like a flower, tall and wild, tame but true
And the smile on my face is like an ocean, the calm before a storm
See the girl who watches the stars, that’s me
Looking past what’s already happened, to the future, it’s a giant white page in front of me
But I know what’s out there, and I’m ready for anything, to branch out like a tree

Because with me, there’s always something

At our post graduation lunch at Petrossian

After the ceremony

Friday, April 25, 2014

My day as Head of School

When I heard that I would be Head of School for a day, I didn’t know what to expect.  I hadn’t the faintest idea about how the school was run, and I was interested to find out.  I was so excited to be able to fill the shoes that I’ve been looking up to my entire life.
As a Level 8 student, I’m used to having a fair amount of responsibility and leadership opportunities, but nothing prepared me for the amazing whirlwind of a day I was about to have.
First thing in the morning, I prepared extensively to give a speech about our latest Speaker Series Presenter, Lori Getz.  I was honored to give that introduction. After giving my introduction, I went back to Building 1 and got ready for my close up! We took some really great photos, especially for that early in the morning.
After photos, I was ready for my first, of many, meetings throughout the day.  I was amazed to see how Division Heads like Mr. Segar and Mrs. Akana check in on classes and meet with so many teachers. Then, much to my enjoyment, I went back three years and visited a Level 5 class to discuss one of my favorite books, Maniac Magee. 
I have to admit, though, my favorite parts of the day happened just before lunch.  I went back to my roots on the Primary Playground and supervised the children playing. That was really touching for me because I was once playing there with the same carefree smile plastered to my face that I could see on all of theirs. It was really special for me, because that was the playground that cultivated me into the person I am today. I gained so many foundations there.
Another highlight for me would have to be going to lunch at The Point (which despite the 
name isn’t owned by Turning Point) with Ms. Richman. After a refreshing walk there, upon which we discussed social media opportunities for the school and the stylistic decisions that some buildings had made, we were there.  During lunch we also talked about common interests like reading and writing.
That concluded my day and my taste of being part of the Administrative Team, but I had a blast.  It was an amazing opportunity, and the twelve years I’ve spent at Turning Point made it all the more sweet.

Until next time,
The Watermelon Radish

Monday, January 27, 2014

My Summer/Winter Adventures in Australia

Happy New Year Everyone!

For the past two weeks, I was down in  beautiful Australia!  I was visiting two of my dearest friends who stayed with me last year.  My mom offered to fly with me but I just said, "Mom, I've got this."  She didn't hear from me much for two weeks. I stayed just outside of Melbourne, two hours exactly.  The Chessel's live in a small town called Undera, and the Kulatunga's in Shepparton which is only slightly bigger.  So, without further adieu, I would like to present to you some highlights from my trip Down Under...

           Being a food blogger, I felt an urge to photograph my first meal
           in the Australian hemisphere.  It was simple and consisted of a spinach and
           egg Fritata, some reasonably fresh fruit, and a few squashed Tater Tots.
           I recommend Qantas, they have good food, and their flight attendants are
           a bit sassy.

This is Diesel, the Chessels' family dog.  She's a Blue Heeler and 
extremely photogenic.  
My very first experience on a dairy farm was filled with fun,
laughter and the occasional scare gun.  A gun that kept the birds from pecking away at the hay, but it was only the noise (no bullet).  When I first heard it, my heart lurched, but after about three days I was used to it.
This is me, on my second night at the farm, holding on to the back of the Ute
 (which is like a pickup truck)
We went Kangaroo spotting, more like chasing, since we were rumbling through the bush like an angry beast.  It was a lot of fun, and I saw my first wild Kangaroo in Australia.
This is a wild Kangaroo at the Kyabram Fauna Park.  Imagine a giant zoo the size of a reserve, and then take away the bars.  The animals, or most of them, could roam free around the park.  I kept looking around for the Drop Bears, a vicious breed of Koala, that is, until they told me that there was no such thing as a Drop Bear.  The animal is a work of fiction to scare off tourists, 
and it looks like I fell for it.
This is a Tasmanian Devil at the Fauna Park.
I'll just keep emu-vin on.
Here we are on a paddle steamer on the Murray River.  This river is the second longest in Australia.  Smack in the middle of the river sits a port town called Echucha (echu-ca).  I learned a lot of historical facts on that tour.  A cool one was that when the bridge from New South Wales to Victoria was being built, six men fell in.  Five bodies were found, so one body is still in the foundation of the bridge.  We named it 'Dead Mans Bridge'.

This is quite possibly the best drink in the world.  Of course, it can only be found in Australia.  
Life just isn't fair, is it?
   Here I am on Boxing Day with the Chessels Family.  I had an amazing experience on the farm and a great time with them!  I was super sad to leave, but I was excited to go with the Kulatunga family to their house for the remainder of my trip.  Check out Diesel's hat, you have no idea how long it took to get that on her head.
 This is a beautiful sunset over the "large" ( population 7,000 ) town of Shepparton on my first night with the Kulatungas.  An awesome thing you can do at night there?  You can actually see the stars.

 On my first day with them, they took me to the Shepparton Chocolate Apple Factory.  Which is, in case you were wondering, the most adorable place in the world.  I got an apple that was covered in white chocolate and sprinkles.  Yum!

These are some plaques from a bakery in the small town of Tetura called Tetura Hot Bread.  This 
   bakery has broken some records for its award winning desserts.  
It was only natural that we stopped by...

This is a Honey Joy.  I didn't get to try it, but, my close source said that it was certainly a joyous munchie.  It is, essentially, cornflakes stuck together with honey and caramel.  
Sounds like honey heaven.

This is the Vanilla Slice, yet another Australian delicacy that the Americans don't have the guts to copy.  Shame on you because this might be the best sweet I've ever had.  The top is a layer of creamy icing, then there is a sweet and crunchy pastry, and in the center is a smooth vanilla custard. My mouth is watering.  This slice has won for the Tetura bakery four years in a row.  
Still not enough proof that this is the ultimate sweet treat?  
There were only two left out of a huge tray when we got to the bakery.

At the end of a long day, KidzTown was the perfect way to relax.  KidzTown is the largest playground I've ever seen, complete with a zip line, fifty different kinds of monkey bars, a huge slide and even a TeenTown.  We spent most of our time in Teen Town.  Above, you can see a giant swing, but some other highlights of the area were spinning cups.  
You sat in them and then they spun in circles at the strangest angles ever.  
Needless to say, I could barely walk for about five minutes afterwards.

Here we have one of my favorite dinners of the trip!  Our resident chef prepared a special Shri-Lanken curry chicken.  The chicken was amazing and came alive with spices, the fried rice was
  different from anything I'd ever had.  I loved the cultural aspect of the food and didn't hesitate to have a second helping of curry!

This is a river in the historical park Sovereign Hill in the town of Ballarat.  The park was all about the Gold Rush in Australia.  Everyone who worked at Sovereign Hill dressed in the clothing of the era.  We went to the Hope Bakery, which specializes in amazing Australian food that you can't get in America.  I had a Sausage Roll, and yes, it is just as amazing as it sounds.  We stopped by the Confectionery where they hand make the hard candies like saltwater taffie, we created colorful candles at the candle factory, and finally we stopped by the river.  Senara and I pounced on the first gold pans we found and began to sift through the the river rocks.  In the end, I came home with a vial of seven pieces.  I think I might need a few more to buy a car though. Maybe.
Here we have a beautiful butterfly in the butterfly house at the Melbourne Zoo.  Trust me when I say, you did not want this one to land on you.  It was as big as a hummingbird.
This is the logo for the hotel that I stayed at in Melbourne.  It literally took up an entire section of the city with its three buildings.  It was beautiful.  My favorite part was an infinity pool on the top floor that gave the swimmers a lovely view of the entire city.
Goodbye Australia, I'll miss you so much!
The land, scenery and experiences were amazing and I will never forget them.  But, the people that became my families for the two weeks I spent there were the best gift I could have ever wished for.  You will never leave my heart, and I left a part of me back in Australia with all of you.
I left some on the Ute whizzing through the bush, I left some beneath the tree playing Keiffer tag, I left some in the Dairy surrounded by cows and I left some in the river to grow with the trees on the banks.