Tag Archive for: Marin 4-year-old 2011-2012

Waxing First Quarter Moon
Lake Lagunitas

Bodhi was not with us today.   The day began with Lenni looking and acting very tired, Simone with that same affect, Sidona said she was “Whiny” today and Leo said he was fine.  Sidona and Leo DID seem fine and Simone and Lenni DID seem quite tired.  However, that all changed once we got going.
I had found one of the first aid bags along with, long lost, map making book.  Everyone wanted to be the Guardian of safety and the boys made a good case for themselves to have the job.  The girls have had the First aid bags pretty much the entire year!  That didn’t change their longing to still have a chance with it UNTIL, I suggested that they be the Map Makers of the day.  They were very happy with that so, when we got to the first part where the picnic tables were they sat down and made the beginning maps of the day and the boys went exploring the creek. Each time we come here we check out the waters and see if anything has changed.   When the girls finished their map making they were hungry.  The boys finally joined them, they all ate, I told a couple of stories and then, off we went to the LEFT on a new adventure.

It was a very warm day but being a bit under the trees and near the water helped quite a bit.  We meandered along the trail discovering wonders of soft plants on our skin and some last of the season edible Rattlesnakeweed.  Lenni REALLY liked eating these and Leo too.  Sidona liked picking the dandelion leaves that we used for paintbrushes about a month ago and used them to brush softly on our checks.  Sidona said there was a great place where the water is fun, frogs are there and so is shade.  It was the exact same spot I wanted to take them so, off the trail, down the other trail and right in front of the gloriously beautiful lake we were.    It did not take long for the game of ” We be Sabor tooth tigers and you be deer” game commenced.  The girls had much to figure out who they wanted to be and it turned out that Simone really liked being the 6 year old sister to Sidona who was a new born.
Leo was really a transformer animal and Lenni was a Bob Cat Black Widow spider.  Phew, this was a lot to steer clear of!!!
When the girls saw me being chased they then became baby and sister deer and I was their Mother.  There was much stalking going on, fending off, saving the children, changing into all manner of creatures, teaching how cats really stalk and pounce, taking a Poop break for Lenni, coming back and playing some more then, stopping just in time to make the last map to go back with, packing up and making our way back.

All were content and well fed from the Earth and Sky.  When we were almost back they ran into their other friends that are always out there and they discovered a Pileated Woodpecker.  It took a long time for me to see it in the tree but I don’t think most, maybe any of your children actually got to see it.  But the ones trying to help us see were very patient and dear about it all.

We then ran back to the bus and made our way back.  Lenni was VERY excited, actually all day, because he was going on a big trip with his Grandma to Los Angeles!

Waxing Moon
Lake Lagunitas

Leo was not with us today.
I had great plans for this day but alas, your children who are so alive, creative and present with themselves, had their own organic plan so, it was my job to follow with some quiet direction.   As soon as we got to the Lake they wanted to run, go to familiar places, explore where they had been to see if anything was the same or different.  More specifically, to see if the Banana Slug home they made was still there and if any Banana Slug’s were residing there in.  The house had but no Banana Slugs.
I did my best to call them in for a story that I had planned.  They stayed, ate, listened but the activity I had, had to be brought in far more invisibly so that is what I did later in the day.  I wanted to lay different trails with different materials, rice, crackers and dried string beans and follow them back to see if they were there, if we could see them, follow them etc. It was from Hansel and Gretel that we would learn such great skills.  I told the story but with a different focus. The focus was on Hansel and Gretel’s great skill at observation and team work.
However, as I have already said, they  just wanted to unfold in their own natural time frame so, that is what happened and I just broadened this a little bit.
Lenny and Bodhi went straight off to a certain part of the creek to explore and Sidona and Simone went exploring close by on the other side of the creek. We walked over the log and Simone was delighted with recalling how brave she was when she walked over it last time!  She chose to scoot over this time.

I started to work with stones and share with them how to listen to the different sounds of the stones to figure out which ones are better for hitting and turning into knives and tools.  They joined me for a bit.  I then quietly made a trail with the green dried string beans and made a call that they are familiar with to try and find me.   Sidona took the lead with this and finally found me.  She said she didn’t follow the trail though. Then all of them came over to me and we worked at finding the trail back.  Each one of them found parts of it. It actually was not easy.  They blended in far more then accpected!

We saw this man, woman and their little child go under the water fall and off the children went to explore this.   Such giggles and delight when they were able to figure out how to get under the waterfalls and look through the water.  They had to get a bit wet in order to really get under there so Sidona, when finished playing here, came back and changed her clothes.   Simone really didn’t want to get her great shoes wet ( every week this challenge occurs. She REALLY likes the shoes she wears to Tender Tracks and they take a long time to dry apparently!) so, she took them off! and went barefoot with joy.
Later on we saw some other people go under and thought that they saw how we did this and followed just like we did.  Sharing joys can be very fun to pass along!
They then remembered making potions with the buckets and asked if I would get the buckets out again. I did and great potions of ash and dirt were made.   When that was done we went exploring down creek to find the Bull frogs that some of their friends that were there  told us about.   Down the creek we went and we heard the Bull Frogs but never actually found them.  However, we did find the Horse tail plant that I had just told them a story about.  I didn’t know where they were but here, we found them!!! How wonderfully supportive of life to guide us there!

The funniest part of the day for me was earlier, when I asked if they wanted to go on an adventure. They were clear that they did not.  And, right as we needed to leave they all said, “Let’s go on an adventure” as if this was a new idea.  I just had to laugh as they were so involved in the perfect adventure of the day with what they were doing.  It takes a while to unfold  and after three hours or so they were THEN ready to expand out. But alas, we could not.

I did not yet mention that earlier there was a man fishing there, illegally.His movements and communications were a bit guarded yet  he caught a beautiful trout and was willing to share this with the children who were so very, very curious and inquisitive about the fish.  They had fun touching it, holding it, looking at the blood coming from it and feeling it’s slimy skin.  It was very beautiful.  And, right before we left and right before they were ready to venture out into a grander exploration, they went back to the waterfall for one last giggling joy behind the waterfall and, Lenny and Bodhi emmersed themselves in the water.


Waning Crescent Moon
Alpine Lake

All were here and that was so much fun. I wanted to take them here so that we would have a beautiful open space to share the birds nests that I have in the bus that Simone had requested to see and some other items.  It made it much easier to be close to a beautiful place to sit and also right next to the bus to take these things out and then put them back in before we went on an adventure.   The boys got RIGHT into pushing and pulling around the many logs there and trying to get them to go into the water.  Lenny found a fishing hook and Leo found some fishing line.  They were in their element! Just DOING, DOING AND MORE DOING!!    Sidona and Simone were delighted with looking at all the birds nests and feeling them.
A wonderful fisherman came by and we spoke with him for a bit.  He circled the Lakes as we did so there was on going greeting from the children to him throughout the day.  There were actually quite a few very nice people that the children greeted on our adventure. People do so love to see the children out and about.  It seems to bring great joy and a smile on many people’s faces when they see children romping around outdoors.

I told two stories today and one included a real turtle shell that I used as an instruement.  They all got to play this instrument and were delighted.  This paved the way for us to go see if we could find the turtles here and off we went.  Lenny had also found a great big thick rope and that was dragged about for the rest of the day. Well, almost the rest of the day until there was such a bit of a tussel around it that I kept it until a beneficial way of tending it could be found by all.  But, until the unresolvable struggles came the three boys were pulling, tugging, running and playing with this rope down the trail.

Sidona showed us the place where she went fishing with her family.  When we were there the girls picked beautiful flowers and the boys played with their rope by the waters edge.  We then saw lot’s of turtles on the otherside.  “Do you think we can go and find the turtles?” I asked.  And off we went on our long journey to the other side of the Lake.

We had to go over water, through mud and avoid a lot of poison oak.  Simone was not too keen on getting her shoes soaking wet as last time it seemed that they took a long time to dry.  However, by the end of the day she finally abandoned this need and got them wet and muddy.  There really wasn’t much of a way to avoid this!   Along our path we came across wonderful and fresh Rattle snake weed which is DELICIOUS, this time of year.  We gathered Wild purple Iris so that we can paint with it next week and we discovered so many beautiful wild flowers.  We were able to eat and gather fresh Doug Fir tips which are so yummy too and one can make fine tea with them.  The children all had fun eating these gourment treasures.  When we finally got to the turtles it was hard to actually get to them due to the Poison Oak.  We found one opening yet getting close really was hard.  One was left sitting there though and we were able to see it more closely as well as see where we were sitting just one hour earlier.

We spent a little time there and then needed to make our way back.   The walk was long and the girls, at the end, meandered, talked, found beautiful flowers and, due to the time, the boys piled in the bus and then I  pulled the bus up right to where the gate was where the girls came out and they gleefully hoped in like getting picked up at a bus stop!