September 28, 2018

Waning Moon

Lake Lagunitas


The day began chilly and cloudy so we stayed bundled up when we arrived to Lake Lagunitas. Everyone was excited to be back at Lake Lagunitas and exploring across the creek and climbing the long leaning log and testing balance across the stones in the water. Miles was very interested in using a long stick to measure the depth of the water near the spillway, and later tested this even further with a splash of his own!

Grandfather Sun came out to shine and our play turned into a hide and seek game with Margot, Rohan, Blake, Siena and Violet hiding and Charlie and Miles seeking. When Charlie got a chance to hide, she was the sneakiest and quietest and it took the rest of her friends some careful searching to finally find her. There was also much giggling from Margot that gave away hiding spots and soon Ruby was chasing everyone through the open area!

During snack we had a bounty to share with little seed and fruit cakes and cut apples that looked like flowers. We heard the story of how the seasons came to be and played the guessing game that Grandfather North and Grandmother South played to take turns with warmth and cold. Each child had a chance to hide the rock in their hands and try to challenge their friends to guess its location.

After snack, all the children were still enamored with chasing and finding each other, which then morphed into an impromptu game of duck, duck, goose! Chasing and running was a big highlight of our day!

We took the longer trail up to the lake overlook and our sunny bench, big rock, and shady picnic table. Some children saw turtles, and we all saw frogs and two crawdads and then each child spent some time writing and drawing in their nature journals. Blake and Rohan had remembered Mother Madrone tree from our first day at Lake Lagunitas and enjoyed climbing up around her and running down the trail on the other side, racing and chasing each other the whole way.

We tried to have lunch at our favorite table under the Douglas Fir, but the wasps found us again. We ate as much as we could, even providing a small offering for the wasps to deter them from our lunches. We decided to offer a second lunch at Peri Park if there were hungry Tender Trackers later. We played more after lunch, up by Mother Madrone and later down by the creek before heading back to Juniper Rose.

When we returned to Peri Park, we had some lunch leftovers, and more importantly: a big stuffie party! We got a chance to meet ALL the stuffies from the special bus basket and they even did a show on the stage. It was a lovely end to another lovely Tender Tracks Friday!


September 21

Waxing Moon

Sorich Ranch Park


We explored a new location for our second day and headed to Sorich Ranch Park. It was already warm and sunny when everyone summited the large rock and declared themselves kings, queens, captains, and leaders! We climbed and re-climbed the big rock, up and down and around and chased our friends on the hill trails.

We sought out some shade for snack and the story about a ‘house with no doors and no windows and a star inside.’ The sweet treat came when Ruby showed us the star inside of the apple! We all had a piece of our apple ‘house’ along with snack. This inspired a planting party where each child planted an apple seed to take home and grow.

Exploring out on the dry, dusty trail we found a grape arbor with some fruit growing that Lauryn and Ruby were tall enough to gather. After our little grape feast, the children found a line of stumps perfect for balancing, hopping, and jumping across. Everyone took turns to cross the stump line and show their best stump skills.

The children decided that the arbor we found would be the perfect shady spot for lunch and we brought our packs and lunches to enjoy the breeze under the arbor. Grandfather Sun was out in all his glory, warming us up and bringing out wasps, too. We ate a speedy lunch to avoid the wasps and then set out to visit Draper Farms. The children identified tomatoes, eggplants, squash and tall, tall sunflowers with giant seed-filled heads that drooped over us. The chickens were the stars of the visit, however, and the children all had deep meaningful conversations with them in various tones of ‘bok bok.’

By this time, all of Tender Tracks children had turned into chickens as we made the walk back to Juniper Rose! There were rainbow colored chickens that laid sparkly eggs and striped chickens whose eggs had glitter inside. There was much ‘bok bok-ing’ through the neighborhood.

Due to the heat, Ruby and Lauryn transported all the chicken-children back to Peri Park for a special wasp-free second lunch under the lovely shade of the redwoods. We happily ate the rest of our lunch on the stage and headed down to the creek to cool our toes in the the water. There was some fearless crossing of the muddy parts as well as floating logs and testing their buoyancy.

The chickens miraculously turned back into children and all our Tender Trackers headed home!

September 14

Waxing Moon

Lake Lagunitas


We had a wonderful first day with our Friday group at Tender Tracks. It was lovely to return to Lake Lagunitas so soon after our family gathering to play with our new friends!

Lauryn shared a raccoon story on the bus ride to Lake Lagunitas and when we arrived, we all played as baby raccoons climbing a tree together. Later, children explored the creek for fish and crawdads, made fishing poles and splashed some rocks.

We had so much gratitude for the delicious banana bread that Wendolyn made for us to fuel our adventuring. Ruby shared a story of Grandfather Sun climbing into the sky and we could feel his warm rays even through the towering redwood trees.

Many children were helping to collect green redwood cones and litter for our earth bags. They also searched through the forest to find their canvas bags and snack mats that were specially drawn by Ruby. We saw many of the creatures and symbols from our bags during our day’s exploring together, including dragonflies, sunshine, and redwood trees.

We climbed the tall stairs near the spillway to visit the lake. We felt like we were climbing into the sky just like Grandfather Sun! Near the lake we found a spot to spy on some bullfrogs and a rambling crawdad, then we perched on the the warm sunny bench and rocks nearby to enjoy the lake view. Many children enjoyed running around Mother Madrone tree and chasing Ruby all around and down the hill or playing eye-spy with Lauryn by the water.

Our Friday friends had so much fun on our first day! We are so happy to be spending the year together.