May 26, 2019
Waning Moon
Lake Lagunitas

All were here and it is was SUCH a beautiful last regular day.  On this day we celebrated ALL of their birthdays. And, it actually was Nelly’s REAL birthday as well as her very last day with us.

When we got to the lakes they were, as always, happy, explorative, ready for anything.  And, they just went right into their favorite places, finding the fish in the creek, going into their favorite tree, and finally coming into circle in our sunny spot atop the hill.  There, with great patience one for the other, they stayed in a rather long circle time with a short birthday story for all and waited as each one received their own special Tender Tracks Birthday gift.

After all of this absolute fun and joy one to the other off we went to walk to a favorite spot, the climbing tree that goes into the lake.

This is going to be an EXTREMELY SHORT journal with this to say:

climbing, helping each other, getting as close as we could to turtles, BIG turtles, Woodpeckers busy above us, Fairy ponds, playing by the water, playing with each other, joy, laughter, WARM day, and end of the day great gratitudes.

A perfect day for them all; celebration and unified fun.

Thank you, thank you, thank you ALL for SUCH a G L O R I O U S year!  It could not have been better.  We have enjoyed you all so very much. Thank you for your support of this work, for tending so well to your children as they came to the many adventures of rain, rain, and then a bit more rain, sun, water and  mud.

We will miss them so much next year and hope that they are in a most wondrous and nature supportive environments during their 4th year of life.


May 22, 2019
Waning Moon
Lake Alpine

Gideon gone on holiday and our friend Terry came to play and visit again.

We were to go to Sorich. When I went by just a day ago the road was clear with no road block signs. But today, ROAD CLOSED the sign said. What to do?  We turned around and, since the day was so beautifully sunny our goal was to go to a sunny place. Off to Lake Alpine we went. And, indeed, it was sunny and beautiful all day. Gentle breezes would come in on and off and cool us down and freshen up the air. Rain clothes and extra coats were taken off for the day and hats were put on, NOT RAIN HATS that is. 🙂

We had such a fine ride just going to Lake Alpine. They so love feeling the bumpiness of the rocky road right before we get there and all the twists and turns of the road.  They always laugh with joy and delight.

We decided, since it took us longer to get to our place today, that we would just have them play and explore straight away and then have a standing circle where we sing our songs, eat a little easily held snack and then make our way to the TURTLES!  Nelly and Addie were “fishing” with Ruby down by the lake when we got there. The boys went to go play by the water.  Siena and Ellery wanted to go over and build and such with them. Rohin said something along the lines of to Ellery, ‘You might not want to come and play because we are playing boys games.’ Those were not his words but the jist of it.  Ellery was quite fine playing with them so they all were playing with logs and in and around the water quite happily.

When we got together to sing our songs they were just grand and so present and involved.  And then, backpacks on and down the road to find the turtles.  We found so many treasures and delights with the birds flying around us, Poison Hemlocks growing up tall right now, poison oak all over and continually helping each other out with where it is.  Going up the big hill Sienna was saying “My legs are so tired!”  And, not long after that, those legs got to go DOWN hill.  At the top however, we watched the water from both sides of the bridge go down singing it’s grand song and changing shape in different parts of it’s adventure down to the still water.  We wondered, if we were to do down in a boat, could we then paddle to our bus? Nathan did not think that down below would allow that.  Many things to ponder and , at some point in time, discover the answer!  But, for now, curiosity and observations.  And then, we went on to go down a hill that looked like what they remembered and then again did not as the grasses all around were very tall.

When we got to the bottom and nearing the bend where we would find the turtles we went very, very, very quietly as the turtles are SO sensitive and leap in the water so quickly.  We did a great job with our stealth and, only about half of the turtles or less went plopping into the water.  They came back fairly quickly too, which was grand!

I believe it was Beau that noticed that our “boat”, the one that you see when you go to the Website with two children sitting on it with their backs towards the on looker, was gone.  I have been coming here for a long time and the huge log/boat truly was not there. So, “WHERE WAS IT?” we all asked. The children scrambled here and there and said they could not find it.  I went back to where they went and Ruby and I think that truly it was over on this other side, slightly submerged and looking a bit different yet, truly the log.  WOW what winter storms and wind we had to move such a large log as that.

We went back and sat for awhile watching the turtles. There was a Mallard boy duck sitting sweetly on a part of the log where only one turtle was and as the turtle was about to get off the duck began pecking at its leg!  The turtle went away from that duck.  Later on most of us saw the duck leave it’s cozy spot, climb up on the other log where all the turtles were and start pecking at one of those turtles. The pecked turtle just pulled himself inside its shell and waited until the duck went away.  We all guessed for awhile why that duck might do that.

The children were sent on an adventure to find a rock that they really liked. They ran off to do so and came back with great stories about what they liked.  Then Nathan, Ellery and Sienna found great rocks with sharp edges to clean up sticks that they had.  Rohin, Beau, Nelly, Addie were having fun throwing things into the water.   Addie and Beau went down further with Terry and found a great log to play with. Most others came with them for awhile and then, it was lunch time.  Watching some Merganser Ducks be with the turtles was fun.   After eating Ruby was fixing Sienna and Ellery’s hair. They began playing with hers for awhile.  I went with Nathan, Beau, Rohin and Addie back to the log to try to get it closer to shore. When we did we found great creatures on it.  Then Sienna, Ellery and Nelly played “Family.”

We all just merged in with the land, the birds, the plants, and all of their own unique curiosities about the Earth but then, it was time to go. Beau so honestly said NO, it is not time to go.  But alas….

We had fun hiking up the big hill, going down the big hill and getting back into our bus where Ruby, again, played the Kalimba and told a story of the day that was sweet and mesmerizing.


May 15, 2019
Waxing Moon
Lake Lagunitas

Ruby was absent and Tiana substituted for her.

The day was FULL ON RAIN throughout the entire day until the very end.  We brought the fine canopy, buckets for sitting on and playing with, the fire material, pot for popcorn and all that was needed to make the day a fine day in the midst of on going rain.  The children, as usual, NEVER skipped a beat.  They just carried on with their absolute presence/ in the moment and with playful creativity.  Truly, they are all remarkable.  Truly, truly, they simply do not make much of a fuss no matter the weather or where we go or are.  Therefore, the day was simply, fun!.

They happily took their buckets when we got there and we brought them over to where we were going to set up the canopy. Then they all helped bring things over. Tiana and I brought the canopy over and we all did our part to put it up.  I set up the fire in order to light it and then they all circled around as I told them the story about How Coyote and Rabbit made the First Fire, and, why we sing the song we do to help the fire go.

The materials were all so dry that all we needed was one match to light it and get it going.  It is always so fun to see if indeed, a one match fire can be made and is a great challenge to do during all four seasons of the year.

We got everything ready to put the popcorn pot on the grate but first, they all helped crank the popcorn pot with it’s handle. We then all listened ever so quietly for the first pop.  There was smoke to contend with and, they are gaining more and more skill with this each time we have built fires.  And then, it happened!  The first pop, then the second, third and on it went.  The best popcorn EVER was made on this day and it was eaten up by all!!

After this there was much exploration of finding newts, banana slugs, eating lunch and then, it was actually time to pack up!  Truly the day FLEW by.  All of us working together and oh yes, we all went down to the creek and explored there as well as had our potty breaks.

Our thank you’s for the day were filled with grand love and then Tiana told a great story coming back home.