Palo Alto Tender Tracks Nov. 1, 2012

Pichetti  Open Space Preserve
Waning Crescent Moon
Day 18

( I could not remember what town Pichetti is in so here is the address for those who asked:
Picchetti Winery
13100 Montebello Road
Cupertino, CA 95014 )

Today we were blessed to have my wonderful friend Terry Morawitz come join us as we await the return for Audrey.  The children took to her kind and grandmotherly yet very spritely ways today.  She is another treasure!   We began the day singing our songs in the bus and sending out love and care to Kaden seeing him Healthy and Happy.   Then, off we went to this beloved place, Pichetti.  The weather was it’s questionable self of late.  But wait a minute, I think this weather is actually very typical of our area!  So, we came prepared with rain gear just in case and in deed  it did sprinkle on us now and again.   There were stories told on the way there and back and when we got there we listened for the Peacock to welcome us. Well it didn’t but as we were leaving, there it was.  It’s new beautiful Peacocky feathers have not grown in and in the AM we saw the female and a young peacock in the chicken coup right near the parking lot.
Terry showed us how she honors  the trees and she went right over to the Great Grandma Eucalyptus tree and gave it a big hug.  The children followed suite with delight!  That was when we discovered the female peacocks and rosehips and climbing on the tree.  They really wanted to climb so off to the pond we went.   When we got there the shelter that they worked so much on last time was there and, it was dry inside!!!!! Wow!  They had worked to put a lot on the roof last time to keep the rain out and here we got to see how their efforts paid off!!!
Throughout the day there was the usual, building, playing, exploring and we had some GREAT hide and go seek which began with Terry, oh dear MISSING??!!!!  Oh yes, we had to look for her tracks, listen to hear her, use our eyes to scan the area. We got to remember all the clothes that she wore and what color her hair was and what kind of shoes she was wearing and then, and then, and then…….WE FOUND HER!!!!  And the game commenced.  On and on they wanted to play. Emme, Aoife, Giselle and Alice all wanted to be “camoflauged” so they would stand in the middle of the trail posing like trees and I would pretend that I did not see them.  Very funny as you can imagine!   This went on for awhile and then  I lead them all up a path towards a beautiful large Oak Grove.  Terry went up ahead and we had to look all over for her.  “Maybe the great Eagles carried her away?” ” We better keep looking up above to find her.”  And of course we found her and a long the way found all manner of treasures up in the trees: crows, acorns, squirrels nests…    The hiding game carried on up there until a big 5th grade nature class was up there and I thought it best if we took our big playful sounds a bit away. Down the hill the children ran and Terry and I just had to find them.  Oh where could they be.  The children were fabulous as they laid so still on the large logs down below.
Paul had to go pee by this time so I took him to a tree. From there he and I went through some other bushes and called out for the others to find us.   Another varying type of round of Hide and go seek commenced by way of really listening.   When Alice found us she loved just sitting in my lap and being very, very quiet.  She DID NOT want to leave.   One by one they found us and pretty soon we were all there and ready to go again. Oh, all but Aoife and Emme who were really wanting to be with themselves and not wanting to play with, Giselle in particular. So there was some typical 4 year old conflict resolution and all worked out fine. At days end Emme and Giselle were laughing and playing together very happily.
I told them a big story about a Bear Boy because earlier everyone was some kind of Bear.  Aoife was  a teeny, teeny, teeny, teeny, teeny, teeny bear!  All the rest were sisters, brothers, dad’s or mom bears.
The fifth grader’s came down the hill and we watched them as they played their games.  Their teacher came over to talk with us for a while and, very social Emme, greeted him and talked on and on with radiance like the Sun.
The ride home got filled with some inbalanced potty talk. I stopped the bus to ask them about this. It is my job, I let them know, to make sure not only that the children are comfortable and safe but that the parents feel good about the way the children speak with each other. I asked them how many can use these words in this way at home.   They all responded.  Then I said that I would do my part and ask their parents. Hence when I came out that is what I did.  We will work more with this next week  and, to let you know, this is no new experience. Some groups, like this one, walk through this type of experience more then others but it is  not outside the typical experiences of four year olds!  I just aid them in finding other ways to channel the developmental exploration of “potty talk”, rebellion, power and social mores .

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