Jan. 09, 2019
Lake Lagunitas
Waxing Crescent Moon

Adam and his Dad joined us today.  Yeah!  He was welcomed in the best way little ones can do one to the other, beautifully. 🙂

This was, however, a most challenging day to join for a wee one as the weather, though beautiful, had moments of rain and cold.  It was clear that the children who have been at Tender Tracks since September have developed legs that no longer are troubled by hiking up big stairs or being in the rain.  When their hands got cold they knew how to ask for and receive mittens, to find their hats and to stop when their legs got tired.  It is continually fun to see their growth.

Nelly, who usually is in the back while walking was running ahead and now, beginning to play with the other children.  Addie is interacting more as well. Ellery can be without Sienna for most of the day. Rohin continues to be more vocal and vibrant with his interactions.  Gideon continues in his love of movement yet with greater spacial awareness, Beau DID not fall asleep today on the way home and during the day he was more settled with the group and our routines/able to be with the group.  And Adam, he stayed close with Dad yet, was consistently moving in and out with the children and, by days end, was with all of them, in a row, “fishing” by the edge of the lake.

This was indeed a beautiful return from a long holiday break. As mentioned, the weather, at times, brought the “edge” of the day. When it came to lunch time, the wind was picking up and we were in an open area. The only place that had a bit of a wind break was the large Fallen down tree where we were. We all helped to clear out the stones underneath so sitting would be easier and we sat, as best we could, there. However, we were still under the sky so when the rain decided to come down for a bit during lunch time, we were in it.  It actually was not that bad and it stopped half way through lunch.  Little hands got a little cold so finishing lunch straight away was encouraged. Then, mittens back on and off they went to play as if no weather discomfort had occurred.

At this place Nathan, Beau and Gideon had great dexterity as they, with ease, climbed up this big laying down tree.  The other children did there best there and they were in varying stages of exploration.  Rohin had slid down and bumped into Sienna.  I and Adams Father halted her full blown tumble.  Rohin easily said, I slid down, not aware of the greater hazard here. Sienna, though only slightly bumped, had tears and fear around this.  I took her in my arms and we sat for a bit, settling down from this unexpected bump into her body. She then got back up and ready to play with Nelly and Addie by a tree where she saw something she liked growing on it.

After lunch and before we left this spot almost all of them wound up by the lake, in a row, “fishing” together.  It was so very, very beautiful. When we had to go they all threw their fishing polls into the lake.  We made our way down the trail and back to the bus.

Beau and Gideon were in the lead HAPPILY running ahead together.  Nathan, Sienna and Rohin were making the sound of a “choo, choo” train ALLLLLLLL the way back.  Adie, Nelly and Ellery were with Ruby. Right before we got back Ellery took a tumble.  I heard that it was sweetly and sensitively tended to and that is why they were a bit behind us.

In the bus we had some clothes changing, settling in, and singing our good bye song. We remembered the lovely things of the day, the cold and the warm and how wonderful it felt to be warm in the bus.

Such a fine and glorious Winter Day in Marin.

Dec. 19, 2018
Waxing Moon
Lake Lagunitas

Gideon was absent.

Oh my, what a beauty filled day.  The sky was gray and the air was cool yet, our hearts were warm and filled with life. On the drive up Ellery was SO happy and filled with life that she gleefully sang sweet made up songs all the way up.  A few of the other children sang gently too but I think they were all mostly listening to HER!  It was glorious to feel, hear and see her joy and contentedness.

When we got to the lakes they went out and found our sunny spot where we set up our circle.  They are always ready for this.  There was some time taken for the first thing in the morning bathroom needs, checking their favorite places out and then coming in.

At circle we had a very special Holiday treat and drink and then the story culminated in a wonderful Angel helping two very kind and generous little boy and girl.  The story was showing the way for what was to take place at the end of the day.  They were, as usual, present, alive and soaking everything in. We then got ready for a wonder-filled adventure walk to find “Woodpecker Heaven” and all the wonders around us.

When the children climbed to the top of the stone stairs we take to get to the large walkway I was reminded of what they were like when they first started school and trying to walk these large stairs.
It was awkward and their little bodies could barely get up. Now, Rohin scrambled up without asking for a hand, at all!  Beau was at the top before anyone with Nathan right behind and so it went.
At the top they found PUDDLES!!!! and ran right through each one as they went to the other end of the long ridge top.  We looked out at the water to see if there were ducks.  Ellery spotted one right away. We looked for more but did not see them.

As we walked through “Woodpecker Heaven” and saw and heard many of them, we came up on a Beautiful Egret hunting for food. Nelly and Addie stayed with Ruby longer than the rest of us as they watched and watched. Addie LOVED this bird so much and told us all about it.

Walking down the trail was filled with fun games of Red Light, Green Light and Different animal walks running towards me and away from me. We found our spot for the day and set up there.
The waters in the lake seemed high and the Fog was all around us with a magical feel to it.  The Woodpeckers pecked and pecked, the Dark Eyed Juncos were flitting about and some birds in the Lake had their voice added to the sweet sounds that were sung all around us.

The children were climbing up the big laying down tree, well some of them, while others played down below.  When we came together for lunch we sat quietly at times to hear all these wondrous sounds. And then, after lunch, it was time to go back for something special.

It turned out that the Angels from the story wished the children to have their own special Guardian Angel. So, in the forest near us, the children used their great eyes, looked all around and, what did they find??? ANGELS, one for each one of them. Soft, gentle angels with wings to take their gentle nighttime whispers before bedtime and then fly them away to where all wishes are heard.

The children were so delighted with their new friends. We got on the bus and they held them well with them in their laps, under their clothes.

This was a most precious day with them. They can run farther, climb faster, laugh harder and are enjoying the day’s weather changes with such ease.  They are becoming far more involved with their play as parallel play takes more and more of a back seat.

Nelly was delighted when Addie was sitting next to her in the bus. Beau is playing easier with the children and coming into his three-year-old stride. Nathan, well, Nathan is still just as happy, adventurous and easy going as he has always been. Rohin is ALIVE, laughing, and enjoying so much more as well as being able to voice his feelings more.  Addie was holding hands and playing with Sienna today and playing more with, not alongside of, the other children.  Ellery was happier than ever and able to be less with Sienna and Sienna is even more active and present with all.

 

Dec. 12, 2018
Waxing Moon
Lake Lagunitas

Oh my, oh my what a beautiful day. The weather was crisp, sweet and, as Goldilocks would say, “Just Right!”  The children were in fine spirits. Ellery, after being with us a  bit, showed signs of being just a tad too much “under the weather” so, it seemed best to give Mom a call to pick her up, which she did and, all was well.

Throughout the day signs of getting closer to four were showing up for those children that began our year on the younger side of 3.  They were louder, more insistent upon their specific desires, filled with greater emotions, roars, growls, and louder laughter. All signs pointing to a change. They are so very on target and on time with their organic developmental shifts.  I laughed quietly inside at the beauty of nature making itself so very present.

We set up circle in our sunny spot. There we sang to the day, received a snack of homemade Banana, date, oatmeal balls and heard a story about Why some Trees Stay Evergreen.  There are those trees that keep their leaves throughout the year.  These evergreen trees he evergreen are the ones we call the great Guardians of the Fall and Winter days and nights. And there are those trees that lose their leaves. They are the Dreamers of the dark time of the year. When Spring comes they wake up and share those dreams with us all through their beauty and aliveness.
This brought us into finding all those different kinds of trees as well as playing with our own dreaming, sleeping, and aliveness.

The children are still in play state where going far is rarely necessary. They are filled with being in the present.   There is most often nothing needed but that which is right in front of us. So, we never went very far from our little area.

There they discovered hanging like monkeys from branches on a Redwood tree, finding wood burned to use for drawing. Discovering rocks that can be used like pencils to draw on other rocks. Discovering boughs that are wonderful for sweeping. Continuing to rebuild the ongoing bridge that gets taken down and built up again.  Swirling and twirling and, as always, so much more.

Addie was heard saying “Guys, this place is really great!” Rohin, Nathan, and Beau were REALLY trying to pick up a HUGE rock. They worked at it for quite some time but alas, it was BIIIIGGGGGG! Gideon, Beau and Nathan were playing sweetly together.  I came behind a tree to listento them and  I heard Gideon, in a very kind voice say to Beau, ” Say Sorry.”  He said this a couple of times. I could not hear Beau’s response yet I did see them all peacefully, key word here, run up the hill and continue to play with ease and joy.

Each time we were all doing things I took sticks and created different simple rhythms and songs.  They, as was intended, carried that play out throughout the rest of the day.

Nelly was more unified and open with the group. Still parallel play yet so engaged. She loved playing with the charcoal stick ( just wood NOT briquets!). Addie was, as stated above, happy and loving this place.  Sienna appears to be in awe and wonder throughout the day with all that goes on and the life around her.  Rohin is one of the younger ones that is really growing up and, getting quite comfortable at Tender Tracks. He did not want to eat the snack so I went to him to offer it to him. He kept quietly and slowly turning in a circle away from me.  I am laughing as I write this because, to my adult self, it was so very precious watching him work at saying no with his body. To him, I shared how he can simply say  “No thank you.” And, he did. 🙂

Beau, though still a bit awkward with his feelings, meaning, he might push someone ( not too hard) if he doesn’t like what they are doing. Now however he is not only getting more skilled at halting that impulse, but the entire group is kindly helping him to remember what they like and don’t like.
He is so precious and kind-hearted. He really does his best. It is beautiful to witness such healthy growth.   Nathan, well Nathan is just present and ever so, content.  I believe this is a good word to describe how he seems.  He is involved with the world, playing with it and playing with his friends.  He is expanding out from just the new found friendship with Gideon to the other children.  Gideon is, as well, happy and in joy over being outdoors, with friends, with his own self, whirling and swirling, exploring and playing.

Today they all reminded me of a flower that has been ready to bloom and now is slowly and in just the right pace, opening up to the Sun of Life.