Hello! Today Threads for Teens hits the road. We made the long trek from Santa Rosa to Los Angeles! All 12 hours of it. The journey takes a bit longer than expected because we are in a truck/trailer and have to go much slower than regular vehicles. We started off with a mini-farewell party at my Nana and Grandpa Gus’s house. Here, my nana, dad, and Uncle Allan wished us safe travels and took pictures as we drove out from the driveway to the street.


We did not make it that far before stopping. Actually we made it approximately three minutes when we stopped to get gas. I cleaned the windshield, while Anika messed with our brand-new GoPro to get it to work. And then finally, we were off. Anika and I spent much of the morning cutting out pictures and words from magazines for the vision board workshops that would be held at each of the summits. Let me tell you, my hand was aching after the first two hours of this! Thankfully, about an hour and a half in, we saw a diversion—the JELLY BELLY FACTORY!!

Of course, we had to stop and get some belly flops. Anika and I were happy to taking a break from cutting. The factory is so busy and colorful! Kids ran everywhere, excited about different Jelly Belly products. I was excited to make my own bag of flavors and to load up on blueberry Jelly Bellies! We also brought Tilly (our logo mascot) into the factory and spent some time getting cute pictures of her. Anika paraded the GoPro around to get some footage. Alas, we still had a long car ride ahead of us and had to leave within fifteen minutes of stopping.


The rest of the car ride remained uneventful. We did find a third pair of scissors and added my mom to the magazine cutting party, but all of us eventually gave up around hour six. After that, we began to talk about and prepare for the next day, our first summit in Los Angeles!! The John Biddy Mason Foundation, which owns the Allen house, a beautiful historic home in downtown LA, offered to let us host the event for FREE. We decided to drop off the trailer the night before in their parking lot, since our hotel in downtown LA couldn’t guarantee parking. Jackie, from the foundation was kind enough to meet us when we rolled up around 8pm and guide us where to park. During this time, I snapped this picture of the gorgeous sunset painted before our eyes.


Grandpa Gus did an artful job of backing the trailer into the parking lot. At this point we were all pretty starving and tired, and most grateful that our hotel was a short two miles from the mansion. Our hotel happened to be across the street from L.A. Live! so there was a plethora of options to choose from. We ended up going to a make your own pizza bar place, where Grandpa Gus and I shared a chicken, mozzarella, pesto, and mushroom pizza. My mom and sister shared a classic, cheese. We also of course brought the GoPro and got some fun footage walking around L.A. Live! Exhausted, we are crawled into bed, awaiting what would happen the next day, an event far different than anything we have ever held before!


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