Palo AltoTender Tracks Wednesday Sept. 26, 2012

First Quarter Moon
Hidden Villa
Day 4

Today was a full month, four days, that we have been together and they are all beginning to jell.  And, they are all such characters!!!!!
We celebrated Misha’s third birthday today and were blessed with a gift.  His wonderful mother made individual treats put in wonderful steel containers that each person could keep.  Inside were some delicious Sea Palm, almonds, fruit and hand made Nettle and organic chocolate balls. All made for a perfect amount for the children.  We sang Misha the traditional Nature Birthday song.  You actually have to see it being sung to really enjoy it so please, ask!  We had our story from last week about Squirrel Nutkin and how he figured out how to find his nuts when he forgot where he planted them.  I brought in Walnuts and Acorns that were harvested last year and they all felt them and experienced them.  When we finished circle they all went to play.

The time to go to Hidden Villa arose and the reason we went there today is because that is where I met Misha’s entire family over all these years.  Misha got out of the bus first and, because he knows this place so well, he rannnn to the Hidden Villa natural playground, went into the tunnel there and began to play.   Julian followed, Juliet was hungry for lunch, we set up lunch area, they all ate and then PLLLAAAYYYYED!!!  Another school came by and the children played with them as well though they sardined themselves inside this tunnel  for quite a while.    The children explored the sand, climbing the trees, listening to the birds and having fun, together. They are playing more and more together and in a unifed way.  This is beautiful to see!

It was then time to go see the piggies, the chickens, the sheep, the goats, the cows but first, I made the sound of each and they guessed what animal I was.  Then, off we went.  Walking with three year olds is a very fun event because you basically do not go that fast and you get to see so many things along the way, and that is what we did.  There were flowers, and things on the ground and in the garden.  There were logs to climb and plants to notice.  While we were walking Juiliet went up to Harper and put her hand in hers.  Harper smiled so and they ran with a skip and a jump. Then Duncan and Julian took the girls hands and the four of them were so happy to be holding hands together.  I then showed them all the plants who come out of the earth and hold their leaves”hands,” together just like them.  What fun!  We all finally made it to the chickens and the pigs.  Harper however was very, very frightened of the chickens so she stayed close to me or Audrey or Mindy.  By the end of our time together she actually was a little bit more at ease!  The pigs however, she loved.  Even the HUGE ones.  The little pigs are still little and the children had fun watching them. However, what seemed to be the MOST fun, was the pig cage on the outside that they would get inside. Jasper , who was fascinated all day with latches and opening and closing things, would close the door and then the children would oink and oink like pigs!! Oh how they liked this so very much.  This game went on and on and on and really, I think it was the greatest highlight.

•Davey was again, overjoyed with the day and he has such a wonder filled laugh!  But, when we had to walk back because we were leaving he was so sad.  He just did not want to goooooo!!! But it was a bit easier for him this week to actually accept this fate of the day, as he knew we would come back for more the following week.
•Zara was alive and having fun with all of the animals and her Tender Tracks Friends and holding hands with some.
•Julian just loves, Misha and Audrey, I think maybe especially Audrey.  When he was waiting for her when she came back from the bathroom I said something like, ‘Audrey is your very dear friend huh”  he just beamed!
• Serena has really bonded with Duncan and they played so happily today in the tunnel at the beginning of the day. She really had a good time being a little piggie too with all of the children.
•Juliet was her consistent alive, happy, getting along  self.  She continues to flow with the group and adventures with ease, inclusivity and apparent joy.
•Duncan is just alive and happy.  At the beginning of the day when we were eating and playing in the tunnel where sand was he just took off his shoes and had far more fun that way. Actually, he and Zara are very much like that, shoes off and enjoying that a lot.  He played joyfully with all the children.
•Misha had such a big smile when we all sang the birthday song to him and he really knows Hidden Villa so well. He was in joy running to this place and that place and my favorite image of him today was seeing him harvest the berries, or at least whatever he could find that looked like a reasonably ripe Blackberry.
•Harper is still starting out with her first  days at Tender Tracks with some tears when Mom goes. She then sits on my lap and, after a time, is truly, just fine.  The chickens, as I mentioned, were not her greatest comfort yet her growth around finding some comfort with them was evident and rather rapid though still more room to find greater ease.  Seeing her face light up when Juliet took her hand was one of those treasured moments and memories that I will keep with me always.  May there be many, many more of those moments at Tender Tracks for all!
•Jasper’s morning hesitancy felt to me that it was a bit less and it feels like for all of them they are gently and sweetly finding their comfort zone in this new and different type of Preschool.  At one point some of the other chhildren were climbing on a log and he was having  a hard time.  He wanted me to really help/do it for him yet I told him, as I did the others, they must eat and sleep and drink more so they will grow and be able to do it on their own with great safety.  ( I am always there to help, guide yet I do my best to give them as much space to explore, experiment and gain personal satisfaction with their own accomplishments and….), as I had hoped, he kept trying, with a wonderful smile until he said ” I have to cwonsintwate (consentrate), that means I have to focus and try more” (or something along those line.)  You cannot get any more sweeter.  He made it along the log, up a big stump and down again and ready to repeat this triumph over and over and over again!  YEAH!!!!!

And so the day went until it was time to go back.


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