Drizzly Saturday Walk

Dear Jasper and Kestrel,

Saturday was rainy but warm here in Salinas. I woke up knowing the report cards were waiting for me, but also knowing they could wait a little longer. I called my friend Pat van Noy and we made a date for Brunch at Ellie’s Great American Restaurant. Uncle David was taking Liza to a friend’s house, so he gave me a ride.

Peeves
Pat, looking good!

Pat and I ate and talked for about 2 hours! It’s amazing how fast time goes by when you are laughing and telling stories with a dear friend. I caught her up on our life and plans for Portland…the new house we are buying, the neighborhood, Auntie Bridgett’s art shows, and my story-writing. She told me about her singing in The Senior Singers and playing bridge with friends.

I had a Mojo Cuban Sandwich which was spicy and sweet. Pat had a patty melt, which she liked very much. The service was friendly, as usual, but a bit slow because it was busy for Saturday brunch.

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Musical Birds

After we had talked ourselves dry, Pat offered me a ride home, but I wanted to have a long walk after my week being mostly inside. I buttoned up my jacket, wrapped my scarf, and slapped on my hat. I was ready.

There were lovely grey clouds and such tiny drizzle drops I could hardly feel them, which made for lovely soft light. Neighborhood sights are small and quiet, and if you are in a hurry to get somewhere, you miss them. Birds on the wire looking like Schroeder’s notes in Charlie Brown…. a lost teething ring carefully hung on a branch, waiting to be retrieved…. an adorable Beware of Dogs sign.

Beware of dog sign
Oh, No! Dogs!

I stopped  by to see one of my oldest friends in Salinas, Rick, and we talked for a long time. He is headed to Disneyland, which he calls The Holy City, this Spring on his annual Pilgrimage. I envy him the fun but not the drive or the crowds!

lost teething ring
Lost teething ring

When I finally got home, Uncle David and Liza were back and Liza was napping. I used her naptime to get all the report cards entered into the computer. Now all I have to do is print them out (keep your fingers crossed!) before conferences start on Wednesday.

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The Paperwork

Love,

Grandma Judy

Keeping Busy

Dear Jasper and Kestrel,

This week has been busy, even though I hardly left  the house except for the walk to school and back.

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Princess Party Place in the lower right

Liza and I have been playing LEGOs a lot. I like that you can make whatever you want, and don’t have to follow the directions. This week we have been creating a party venue for Elsa, Anna, Olaf, and an assortment of creatures of our own making. Liza has a big circle bag to keep the LEGOs in one place. It makes cleaning up much easier, and we never step on blocks!

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Liza’s creations

Uncle David taught Liza how to shoot rubber bands (don’t ask me why, but he did. I guess it’s a life skill.) Her hands aren’t quite strong enough yet, but it’s good eye hand practice and we made an evening of it, shooting them into a big bowl we borrowed from Auntie Olga.

Mimi card
Card from MiMi

I got mail this week! Our dear friend MiMi sent a thank you card for some candied nuts we had taken to her house. It was a watercolor picture of the bag of nuts! How special is that? So wonderful to have sweet, talented friends. I also got a card from you, Kestrel! I know it had been in the mailbox for awhile, but it was fine. Thanks so much for thinking of me.

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Card from you!!

Last night we played with light. Liza had a big bag from our take out dinner from the Moss Landing Cafe, and I turned it into a hat. It went from bag, to hat, to light show! Liza has an RGB LED light in her room, which is a fancy way of saying a light that can change color and stay cool. We put some holes in the bag, put the light in the bag, and made a planetarium. It was beautiful and fun. It felt magical, but Uncle David explained why the colors separated like they did, so it was also a science lesson.

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Light Show on the Ceiling

This morning was a puppet show in my room, with a tooth fairy, a girl, a flying tooth, and a stray Leprechaun. The stuffties were the audience.

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Puppet Show Audience

And the rest of the day will be spent on Report Cards. There is a lot of paperwork to get ready for the final information going into the computer…special forms for kids learning English, special graphs for reading programs…but it all is important. It takes a couple of days to get it all together.

I wonder if this is what John Steinbeck meant when he said “There’s always something to do in Salinas.”

Love,

Grandma Judy