May 8, 2019
Waxing Moon
Roy’s Redwoods

Well, I feel like a broken record and maybe not even telling the truth yet it is true, today was yet ANOTHER wonderful day with your children!  They continue to play with each other, love each other, hold hands with each other, laugh with each other and care about each other.  All Ruby and I have to do is offer what we do and they are RIGHT THERE!  Their connection to the Natural world grows with ease and enthusiasm.  They welcome new found ways to listen to the birds and animals and to find more beings that live all around us.  Each one of them grows more and more social.  The volume of the days seem to attest to that.

Three year olds at Tender Tracks are typically much more quiet. The closer they get to four the more of a voice they have that is filled with excitement, enthusiasm, lot’s of stories and words.  Today was this, filled with happy excitement and each one vying to be heard.

When we got to Roy’s they clambered out, all but Addie, Ellery and Sienna. They stayed with me in the bus while I got our snack things together. They really wanted to help so each one of them got something to carry. They were very proud and announced what they were doing when we found the group.

The group, when we found them, were all scooting across a log that was across the creek.   All the children, accept Nathan and Rohin, went to the bouncy tree. While they all were bouncing and going to MANY different lands, Nathan and Rohin helped set up circle with me.  Then, very happily they all came in.

At circle we had quite the conversation about ipads and what you do with those things and then we went into our songs. The songs all utilize their hands.  Beau said that he could not make Bunny ears, the pointer and middle finger held up like bunnies, so we tried something else. He was happy to be able to do that.  They all sang with their voice and with their hands accept Rohin and Gideon who watched intently and then tried now and again.  They are getting it yet still in the dreamier place of observation.

We then had a grand story that is categorized as a Sequential Tale. This is a story where you have on going repeating lines.  It is called :

My version includes more “nature connection” aspects yet is basically the same.  It is such a fun tale and so appropriate for this age where, sometimes they do things that they should not, get into trouble and then have to make it right.

After circle they all helped fold their own mats, clean up and then play for a bit. We then began our journey up the hill and down the hill to make our way through the forest and to our other special place.  However, as we walked along Beau gently fell half way into a small puddle and got quite wet. Ruby ran back to the bus to get some extra clothes while the rest of us went on a walk about noticing the Poison Oak and the Berry bushes and making our bodies like the leaves of those two plants.
Then off we went down the trail with more fun.
When  we arrived at our place they dropped their packs and went right in to the grand Redwood “Cathedral”  then out to go on the bouncy tree.
Lunch came, with story, songs that I sang and shared with them and then they went back to the Cathedral. But wait, Nathan ran out and said, “Their Dead! Come see!!”  So, we went inside and what did we see??? Sienna and Ellery DEAD!  Oh dear.”Well, let’s go away and see if something changes?”  We went away and when we came back they were in different spots but, still DEAD!  How could this be?  We did it again but Nelly really wanted to be dead too and, it happened, she died!  But the MOST remarkable thing was that Ellery is the best 3 yr old expert EVER with regard to this. NO MATTER if her face was touched, brushed with branches she NEVER, NO NEVER, NO NEVER EVER! flinched!  We think she is actually a MASTER meditator. And Nelly and Sienna were rather grand too with their consistent stillness.  As a matter of fact, when it was time to go Ruby had to do some very special magick to wake them up from their journey to dead land!  We knew that they were dreaming, dreaming and would have many stories to tell us, some day! 🙂
Our walk back was truly fun as they became rabbits in holes like the song we sing and seeing Butterflies.  In the bus we sang our good bye song and each gave their sweet and precious thank you’s. Then off we went with Ruby playing Kalimba and telling her many grand tales.

May 7, 2019
Waxing Crescent Moon
Lake Lagunitas

Josies family met us there, Holden was back from Holiday and Ellie was back from her hospital adventure.

Ellie was in the best spirits we have yet to see her in.  She was happy, engaged, warm of heart and content.
She played with Luna and with Josie and the boys with so much fun.  What a true treat and delight to witness this.

When we got to the Lakes Theo instantly went to scamper over the log above the creek and see if their crawdad skeleton collection was still there.  The girls went over to Josie, Hugo and her Mom and discovered that they were creating a Museum of many collections. Luna and Ellie joined in the gathering pursuit while Holden and Eamon joined Theo.  Ruby was in the area they were all in and I was setting up circle.  As I looked over I saw Holden ever so gently, as if in slow motion, fall sweetly, HALF, into the water.  This of course bothered him not. However, the day was actually a bit cold so I took him to the bus to change clothes, since, we hadn’t even had circle yet. Eamon got a bit wet as well so I took him to change his clothes. He was indeed resistant to the clothes change yet, in the end, he showed signs of being happy that he had warmer clothes on, right about at lunch, when it got cold for a bit.

After all that was said and done we gathered for circle, new jobs, new story and familiar songs.  After circle they went back to play. Luna, Ellie and the boys all played together.  The boys had found a string that became a grand prize to be protected.  I however, sneaky as I am, found a way to get it from them and then, the fun and games began.  Great Stealth, observation, quietness, fastness and team work took place as we played our games and “catch and release” of the rope.:)   This all went on for quite some time until, as Ruby and I checked the clock, time to pack up and see if we could find Chipmunks in the location that I have seen them before came.

All the day the boys were filled with energy that was immersed in play and aliveness.  Coming and going they were, always in the back, as they found wonders here and wonders there.  We all finally made it to our destination.   Luna and Ellie instantly went to play “Family” in the special Redwood House.  The boys wound up making face paint from stones with Ruby.  Josie was exploring the creek and such with her Mom and brother.  At some point they all wound up together and climbing the trees and playing.

Lunch came about and then back to play, finding treasures in the water, and Theo trying to push me over while I was sitting.  They all got involved after awhile in a very typical game where the children come towards me and I push them away.  There are many aspects of this game that, believe it or not has to do with, problem solving, testing their strength, working together, strategy and then just plain old laughing fun.

When we were walking back, I heard that Ruby, Ellie, Josie and her Mom all talked and talked and talked all the way back.  I was with the boys and at times Luna until she ran ahead.  The boys discovered the Spittle bugs that are all over so many of the plants right now.  They were extremely involved in finding them, harvesting plants that they can eat and being extremely involved in the natural world. This was wonderful AND, so hard as we really had to get back.

And oh yes, Theo, before we left, got soaked and happy about it.  This was a truly wonderful thing since at the beginning of the year getting wet was NOT!!!! his comfort zone at all so, the fact that he was fine getting wet and able and willing to walk all the way back like that was just plain, beautiful!

 

 

 

May 3, 2019
Almost New Moon
Lake Lagunitas

Today we celebrated Charlie’s birthday in the sunshine of Lake Lagunitas! Charlie also brought a book to share for the bus ride, which all the children enjoyed while holding their stuffies. Raccoon Family play began immediately as the children dropped their packs at the backpack tree and launched themselves towards Raccoon Family HQ, the Redwood Fairy Ring!

Then all friends were in our climbing tree and each Tender Tracker was perched on their own branch. Later, Charlie and Miles searched for rocks to smush into rock paint. We found another fairy circle that looked like a little room, and Violet found a cozy nook and took a ‘nap’ in it. The children played in the space that used to be a huge puddle and remembered all the splashing and boot-filling of a month ago. While running, Siena took a tumble and all the Tender Trackers came to check on her and then Blake, Rohan and Miles ran to get the Guardian of Safety kit and help get some special sauce and a bandaid for their friend and Violet helped Siena walk to snack.

At snack we had Charlie’s special treat and heard the amazing story of her adventures through her life and wished on the birthday story candle for future fun and adventures for our friend! After snack, Ruby showed us a way to create fire by rubbing our hands on a spindle and spinning it in a fire board; fire by friction! Margot, Blake, Miles, Violet and Charlie came with me and we went to collect some food for the fire fairies, some dry twigs and soft things. We found some dry moss, lichen and madrone twigs and Margot collected lupine flowers for all her friends. Siena and Rohan were with Ruby trying the spindle and fire boards. Siena also painted her face with charcoal like the Yellow Jacket Sisters in the story Ruby told about Coyote stealing fire. We returned with our bounty of fire fairy food and many children tried the spindles and Miles noticed how it got hot after he kept making it spin. No flames were made on this day, but much fun was had!

The creek is lower now and we all had fun crossing it in various ways: over downed logs, balancing on rocks, or just straight through the water in bare or booted feet! The children climbed, waded and explored on both sides of the creek, and quite a few got wet. Charlie’s keen eyes spotted small fish in the water! We found more rocks to grind into paint and decorated each others faces and arms.

On Juniper Rose, we shared our gratitude for logs, the creek, sun and sky, fish, lichen, and fire food. We had more creek play at Peri Park (where Charlie spotted more fish!) while we waited for our family and friends. Also, at one point during the day, Violet exclaimed, “This is the best day ever!” Which is something she says almost every week (because, well, it’s true.) Thanks for letting us share the best days ever with your children!