My time on a national talk show

rachaelray-braedenYou might have been working or in school like I was on Monday, September 15th at 10am and so you might not have seen it BUT I was on the Rachael Ray Show. It airs in Delaware at 10am during the week on 6ABC. We recorded it though and I’ve watched it three times already. A film crew came to our  house the Sunday prior to going to New York to be on the show. The film crew was very nice, it was not easy to be followed around for a day, but it was kind of cool, also. I don’t know how people like Rachael Ray do it!

rachaelray-braeden-braes-brown-bagsThe Rachael Ray Show has just started their 9th season. I got to be on the first show of the season. Rachael Ray is doing an awesome thing which she calls 9 Million Meals #9millionmeals. I was able to be on the show to talk about 3B Brae’s Brown Bags. I also met Anton Cobb from Oregon who is helping raise money for a food bank in Oregon. He skips his lunch break once per week to sit outside and raise money for other people to be able to have lunch. He was so nice! We also met Pedro Rodriguez. He is a chef in New York at the New York City Rescue Mission. He really cares about what he is doing and in helping others to have access to food but also respect.

I’ve never experienced anything like this before. Even when I went to the White House it wasn’t really like being on TV. On TV things are going very fast. There were at least 50 lights in the ceiling in the studio and so many cameras. It was crazy but it was fun to have the chance to be there. Plus I got to stay with my Mom in a hotel and also ride the train. I really like to ride trains. I like to travel.

Don’t forget to like me on Facebook or to follow me on Twitter. I remember to update them more, I promise!

ABC Summer of Service Award

BeInspiredLogoLockUpYay! Thank you! I am a recipient of the ABC Summer of Service Award! First of all that’s just really cool and second it comes with a $1,000 award which I will be able to put into my foundation. That is VERY nice and I know it will come in handy as we near the holidays and the winter months.

There were other young people, young leaders who won this award, too. And I would like to say congratulations to all of them. We really do have some amazing people in our world. We all need to get together to spread this good news and to share our ideas on how we can keep helping the world around us.

Thank you so much!

The Summer of Service Awards is a project of Disney ABC Television Group, in collaboration with Disney Friends for Change, an initiative that inspires kids and their families to make a lasting, positive change by helping people, communities, and the planet.

An Evening in the Garden

Garden for the CommunityLast night I went to the Evening in the Garden at the University of Delaware. There is a garden for the community that the College of Agriculture & Natural Resources maintains and they donate produce to the Food Bank of Delaware. So all my Food Bank friends were there. I got to see Chad and Kim and everybody who went to Dover for the Food Bank Legislative day, even Pat Beebe. They are all so nice.

I also got to see the big garden and I was impressed. It was nice and I took a picture to show you. I tweeted it last night but I didn’t have time to write a blog post last night so you might have already seen it.

We had food made by the culinary students who are learning how to be chefs thanks to the Food Bank Culinary School. I had two slices of pound cake with a caramel sauce which isn’t very healthy but they were small slices and they were VERY good and I was standing when I ate them so I was working off the not so healthy parts.

At the GardenThen my Mom bought raffle tickets and we actually won something! We won four tickets to see the football game tomorrow at UD against Delaware State and they gave us a parking pass, too! I can’t believe it and I am very excited that I will be able to go see a football game!BwuxzhICQAA2VNJ

I talked with Chad Robinson for a little bit about the work I’d like to do at the University of Delaware with food recovery. He said he has heard about it and that UD has mentioned me in meetings recently which is really cool even if they aren’t so happy to be pushed by a 10-year-old.

 

You all need to meet Tony

So I did not have the picture of my friend Tony Attaway to post on my last blog post, but I found this one that my stepdad Brian took and it kind of shows what I want you to see.

Tony tells me he does not take it well when someone says nice things about him. He also said that he does not think he did so many good things when he was my age.

I don’t believe you Tony!

Tony is my friend from the Emmanuel Dining Room. He works for the Ministry of Caring. He is there every weekend when I deliver bags. He says I am his little hero and I want him to know he is also a hero of mine. He makes it his job to feed people who are hungry. But he does not just feed them food. He talks to every single person who comes to eat at the soup kitchen. He helps then find a table to sit. He knows their names.

I am trying very hard to make sure that when I give out my 3B bags that I also talk to who receives them. That I tell them I hope they have a good day. That I learn their names!

Tony. Tony. Tony.

I know it was not what you wanted to be surprised by me at my 3B Summer Celebration. But I am so happy you came and I am so happy I could give you an award. You deserve it!

P.S. When I get the photos from Danielle Quigley (our beautiful photographer friend) I will send on to Ms. Dorine so she can give it to you.

Oh and one more thing.

Catrina Sharp from Gals That Give she challenged me to do the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge!

I accepted of course!

I nominated my Mom, my Uncle Greg and my buddy Senator Bryan Townsend!

The 3B Thank You party and 5th grade

inflatable-obstacleOn Saturday, August 23rd if you came out for the 3B Summer Celebration at the Bear-Glasgow YMCA then I know you had a great time. My mom and my brother Finn and me all got there at 1pm. We set up and then my brother and me had a chance to test out the inflatable obstacle course from Inflatable’s R Fun. It was a lot of fun, I think I did it like 20 times. Maybe more.

3B-Rockstar-Planners-1024x634The event’s committee, my new friends, best ladies ever, Terry Mullan, Kim Turner, Caitlin Custer and Catrina Sharp were all there to help set up, too. We set up with 30 table cloths and duct tape. My Grandmom and Granpop Stephan brought balloons and paper lanterns. My Gram and Pop Pop helped with fruit strays and also with the duct tape.

We had give away prize items planned but we did not know that people were going to also bring prizes. So we had a table full of a lot of prizes. Everyone who came got two of those tickets to get prizes. We also said they could buy more tickets if they wanted and some people did that, too. People donated to 3B too even though I said it was a thank you event and not a fundraiser. People are just nice like that. Over $400 was donated by my friends in the community.

brae-buddy-senator-townsendWhen a lot of people had gotten to the party I did a speech. I’m getting better at them. I had my script and my Mom highlighted times for me to look up to remind me but I went off script and made people laugh sometimes. I decided to give out awards to special people. So Tony Attaway from the Ministry of Caring, he got an award because he has a big heart and he helps feed people and he came all the way down to my thank you celebration even after being very busy with work because he works every weekend, thank you TONY!senator-hall-long-braeden-celebration Senator Hall-Long, she got an award because she is helping be improve food recovery at the University of Delaware. Senator Townsend is my buddy, his award was most fun for me to give, I think of him as like my family. He makes me feel important. Let’s see, I gave an award to Alpha Phi Omega the UD Chapter and also to The Food Bank of Delaware, the Bear-Glasgow YMCA and Gals That Give. I also gave an award to my Great Grandparents, Bob and Rose Willey because they are very big fans and they love me and that makes me want to do good, too. 

friends-3b-celebrationI was happy to see that Senator Nicole Poore came to celebrate and also State Representative Valerie Longhurst came to celebrate which was very nice of them both. I have a good picture with them and I think I need to go on my Mom’s computer to get it. I will find it and post it here, they both were happy to see me.

Senator Carper didn’t come and Jeffry Gentry and Tanya Steel, but I will find a way to get them their awards because they are very important to me also.

We had food from Big Fish Grill in Glenn Mills, PA and we had the MooMobile there from the UDairy Creamery and I know everyone loved the ice cream plus I am pretty sure we ran out of sandwiches so they must have been good, too. Sponsors helped make the event possible and they included Willey Farms, Holman Moving Systems, Greg and Margie Mannering, Transportation Communications Union – Local Lodge 584, UDairy Creamery, Bear-Glasgow YMCA, Food Bank of Delaware, Gals that Gives and 93.7 WSTW. Our very pretty photographer that you might have seen around was the best Danielle Quigley. I can’t wait to see the pictures she took! I will post some on here when we get them.

My Mom asked me what my favorite part was and I definitely would say it was when I got to give out the awards. I got to call people to the stage and surprise them and it made me very happy and I think they were also very happy. I also hope everyone liked the goodie bags we gave out. I designed cool sunglasses and my Mom designed t-shirts and car magnets. I better see some 3B car magnets out there soon!

Well I don’t know about you but I could have used a little bit more Summer. A full week of all-day 5th grade is in store for me, but I did finish three days and then this weekend we do have an extra day off for Labor Day. So that is good.

My 5th grade teacher at Keene Elementary seems very nice. Her name is Mrs. Cameron. A lot of my friends are in my class. We already started reading a chapter book and also took a lot of tests and have homework. I like seeing my friends and I do like learning but it already seems like a lot. Maybe I just need to get back into the routine.

Well I hope everyone liked the celebration. I hope you know I do #3BThankYou for all you do to help 3B and also I hope everyone has a great back to school week.

Bag packing and meeting new people

3b-vbs-assemblyA couple weeks ago I was asked by a very nice lady named Katie if I would like to go to her church vacation bible school program and talk to the group about 3B Brae’s Brown Bags. My Mom said that would be nice and so I went, sometimes my brother Finnegan went also. One of the nights was called a super hero night and I brought in my presentation board and talked to the group of kids for a little bit, and then we all talked about what things we could do to be heroes. There whole topic or theme for the week was to be a giver and not a getter.

Then on the last night of the vacation bible school we backed bags. People in the group donated water and healthy snacks. We packed 100 bags! It was like an assembly line and it was just such a really good feeling.

Today I’m with my Mom at her work because at lunch time we’re going to go to the Hope Dining Room. I am going to get to meet volunteers and see what they do to help people in the community. It’s in the basement of the Kingswood United Methodist Church which is only about 10 minutes from where my Mom works. So it should be a good trip. Maybe we can even see if they would like bag deliveries sometimes. I packed five bags this morning to bring to them, the lady, Paula, who reached out to have me visit, she said they serve lunch there to the homeless. I’ll learn more and tell you about it later.

Then later in the afternoon I have a call in with people from Nickelodeon who want to learn more about what I’m doing and why I’m doing it. I don’t know why but who is going to turn down a call from Nickelodeon? Not this boy!

I hope everyone has a great day!

How do you describe a hero?

young-heroes-awardWhen you think about what being a hero means to you, what do you think? I guess most kids my age think about Batman, he is my favorite super hero because he doesn’t really have any extra powers, he’s just out to catch the bad guys. Anyway, there are a lot of kinds of heroes and you can have more than one. Usually I think people consider a hero to be someone they look up to because the person inspires them to do more and be better.

On Wednesday, August 6th, I was named a Young Hero by the National Liberty Museum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. I can’t really explain how that felt. I toured the museum and saw exhibits about great people like Nelson Mandela and Mother Teresa and saw all the people who died trying to help others after the 9/11 attacks in New York. Then later in the afternoon I was on stage receiving a medal of honor from this same museum. They will have my picture and my story about Brae’s Brown Bags in their museum as an exhibit. It doesn’t really seem right but at the same time it feels good.

young heroThere were 13 other kids honored who are all making big changes in the lives of the people around them. There was a boy who is helping mentor his peers and also raising money for pediatric cancer because he has had cancer and he lost a leg during his battle. There was a girl who is helping people who are in the LGBT community in her high school. She is helping fight against bullying and show people to be accepting of each other. One of the girls creates gardens all over to help war veterans have a place where they can find peace. I stood on the same stage as a young girl who stood up out of her wheel chair with braces on both her legs as we heard the story about how she petitioned the American Girl doll makers and told them there should be a doll with a wheel chair. All of these kids, all of them, definitely heroes, doing great things. Me though, a hero? Really?

My Mom said she nominated me for the award because I’m showing all kids in my community that it doesn’t matter how old you are, if you see a place where change is needed and you set out to make that change, then you’re a leader. She said I help her to want to be a better person and that when she sees me being a leader and helping to feed the hungry then that also makes me her hero.

selfies-youngheroesI would like to thank TD Bank who sponsored the event at the National Liberty Museum and also all the people at the National Liberty Museum who said really nice things about me and everyone else. I hope they know they make us kids want to do more because they encourage us.

To all the kids I stood on stage with, trying to take selfies! All of  you are pretty cool people and I hope we meet again.

Thank you!

Giving a speech at the White House with the First Lady #kidsstatedinner

brae-firstlady-hugWhat a roller coaster of a month July has been! I feel like I say something like that every time I begin writing a new post. I guess it’s good to be keeping busy though, right?

My last post let you all know that I was going to be giving a speech at the White House and I did on July 18th.

I also took my first plane ride and I really liked looking out the window and seeing how the cars got smaller and then seeing how I was above the clouds. It was really cool!

Me at the White House

Me at the White House

But about the trip, my Mom and I flew into Washington, DC Thursday morning and we stayed at the Westin in Georgetown. It was a really nice room and I got to go swimming, too. My Mom took a lot of pictures and she has them on Flickr if you want to see.

I also got to go with all the 2014 Healthy Lunchtime Challenge winners to the National Museum of American History and I really like that. I got to meet everyone and talk with them. It was funny because everyone kept asking me what my recipe was because they all got to Washington because they were winners for their recipes. So I tried explaining that I was a 2013 winner but that the new Delaware winner was Roisin Liew and she was very nice. I met her in the airport before we got to Washington.

I think people were surprised when they got to the White House and I was already there. I got to go early with Tanya Steel and my Mom. They let me walk in the ballroom and practice a line of my speech and make sure I would be tall enough at the podium. They had to cut down the stool to be just my size which was pretty funny. We were joking it was like Goldilocks the three bears.

brae-white-house

Me and the First Lady Michelle Obama

When it came time for the 2014 Kids’ State Dinner I stayed with First Lady Michelle Obama and with Tanya Steel and then we were introduced in the room and I was on stage with them. My Mom was in the front at a table. Tanya gave a speech and she introduced me, she said she is proud of me and that she hopes my story will inspire other kids. I hope it will, too. And then I gave my speech. I was nervous, but I just did like I practiced before and when people in the audience started clapping and laughing during funny moments I knew I was doing good and so then I wasn’t nervous anymore. The First Lady gave me a big hug which was an awesome feeling and then she told everyone that I did a great job but that I’m not supposed to make the First Lady cry. Of course she meant happy, proud tears, so it was okay. She seemed really, really proud of me.

Me with Tanya Steel

Me with Tanya Steel

I got to talk about Brae’s Brown Bags, but what was more important was to be able to talk about how everyone no matter their age or no matter if they are rich or poor that they should all have the opportunity to eat healthy. I think a lot of people agreed and seemed to understand. I think it is important that people think about it. Food insecurity is an injustice.

I know my Mom and really my whole family and all my friends were also very proud. Everyone watched and said I did good. And then I got like 100 tweets on my phone. Really, every time I cleared the screen I was getting more. I am still responding to people even now!

One thing I have learned about Tanya Steel and about First Lady Michelle Obama is that they are more than just inspiring leaders, they are Moms. I think people forget about that sometimes. They both talked about their kids and about how they love their families. But you can tell they love all kids and they want all of us to be happy and healthy.

So then after the trip to Washington, which was a crazy whirl wind, roller coaster ride, then my family went to the beach. We went to Fenwick Island, that is where we go every summer. It is always a lot of fun. It was nice to just be able to dig in the sand, watch Disney on TV and also swim in the ocean. I went out in the waves this year even without my boogie board. We all had a lot of fun and it was good to be able to unwind.

I’m heading back to the White House … and more! #2030NOW

If you follow 3B on Facebook than you most likely have already heard the BIG news.

I'm on the far left wearing my White House bag at the Julia Child FOOD exhibit July 2013.

I’m on the far left wearing my White House bag at the Julia Child FOOD exhibit July 2013.

I have been asked to attend the 2014 Kids’ State Dinner at the White House to be their guest speaker and introduce our First Lady, Michelle Obama.

Last night my Mom and I had a conference call with ladies from the White House and they asked me a little bit about what I might like to say.

I feel like I could probably answer them better today than I did last night because I’ve been jotting down some notes. I’ve also been thinking about it after hearing that they said about how the speech should include elements about healthy eating since that is that the Kids’ State Dinner and Healthy Lunchtime Challenge are all about. So now I have a much better idea on what is expected and on what I would like to include.

lm_kids_state_dinner_pre_weekend_headerSo next week, on Friday July 18th, you can tune in and watch the Kids’ State Dinner live from the White House to see and hear me talk but also to see all the new winners :)

Other very cool and exciting news is that I will be receiving a Young Hero Award from the National Liberty Museum in Philadelphia. “This annual award, sponsored by TD Bank, recognizes young people who have championed liberty through their actions.” They will be taking my picture and putting it, along with my story, in their museum as an exhibit. WHAT! Isn’t that so cool? Thank you, thank you. This is really a great honor.

Oooo and I read about something called the Social Good Summit. It is happening in New York in September and the link I clicked on is asking for speakers. Do you think they’ll let a kid be a speaker? Because I’ve used the #socialgood hashtag before and I think I could give them a new perspective.

Has June been a busy month for you?

It has been a couple of weeks since I last updated everyone. Really there is so much to talk about!

Since my last post I’ve been keeping busy. My Gram, Mom, Finn and Amelia went with me to the Blue Ball Barn in Wilmington for the Cabot Community Tour event. It was fun and I had a chance to see Delaware’s First Lady Carla Markell again. The Fun Department was there, too, from WSTW and they were playing music and had games and stuff. It was a fun event.

10492341_743236225720113_7545320996577667562_nThen on Friday June 20th I went to Dover with my Mom. This time I spoke to a group just outside of Legislative Hall and it was the IM40 4-H group who had come to Legislative Hall for a field trip. It was a small group of kids but they asked good questions and it was kind of nice to talk to kids and try and encourage them to help out around their community.

Plus Ms. Kyle Jones from WMDT ABC 47 came to interview me and she took some video of me talking to the group and then it was on ABC 47 in Salisbury, Maryland.

She was really nice and so were the kids. And the leader’s name was Ms. Sequoia Rent and she gave me a cool IM40 shirt and she said she was very proud of me.

And then on Sunday, June 22nd I delivered 60 bags to the Emmanuel Dining Room. They were all work force bags so they had additional toiletry items in them. Many thanks to the girl scouts who gave me many of those donations.

10302039_745883812122021_7056946879157190157_nThen on Wednesday, June 25th bright and early in the morning my Mom took me to Wilmington and I was able to meet a bunch of the staff from the Ministry of Caring. I talked with them at their staff meeting. I told them about what I have been doing with Brae’s Brown Bags and I also told them about why it is important. The person who introduced me, his name is Mark, he was so nice. He said really nice things about me and it made me feel important. He even said that when I’m old enough to have a job that there are a bunch of things he would like to hire me to do. Include being a lobbyist which I had to ask my Mom what that meant. And when he introduced me he was talking about how there are hundreds of abbreviations that people know all over the world because they are a symbol of something important and of something that makes a difference. He said like MLK and JFK, like NASA and SOS. He said the newest important abbreviation, one that people all over will know and it will mean something to them will be 3B. I am not sure that I could have smiled bigger or felt more happy than I did when he said those things. At the same time I could not believe he was talking about me and 3B.

So thank you. Thank you to everyone who helps me with Brae’s Brown Bags and please know that you are also helping everyone who gets one of the 3B bags. We are all making a difference, one bag at a time.

My Mom and I have been sending out invitations to my 3B Summer Celebration. It’s going to be a super fun family event held at the YMCA in Bear and it is for everyone who has helped Brae’s Brown Bags grow. So be on the look out for your invite.

10464046_10152141361271570_841057194132431595_nOh and my stepdad and my Mom and my brother, we all went to see a concert last night. We saw American Authors, The Script and OneRepublic and it was AWESOME! So awesome! I knew a lot of the songs. I am hoping to get them so I can listen to them now at home, too.

Big BIG things are coming up and I can’t wait to tell all of you but it has to wait a little bit. So check back here in the next week or so to find out what amazing opportunity I have been given for July!