August-September 1971

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Roy Blair and Bob drove to S.F. to attend a symposium, leaving on a Monday night and getting back late Tuesday night.

Wednesday I drove into town and left the two boys with Linda while Rebecca and I went shopping for Jeff’s birthday gifts. It was to be a fireman’s party with fire hat invitations and a fire hat cake. I made the cake that night and decorated it the next morning before the party. Children came at 10:30 and went home at 12:30. Jeff had invited Dennis Hooper, John Van Duyne, Robbie Fox, Ronald Lindsey, and Forrest Hartman. Rebecca had invited Jenny Hooper to play with her and when Marilyn brought John over we asked Nancy to stay too. I had frozen nine snowballs during the last winter and we had just enough. I had Muff Wilkins there to help and Clarke was at Linda Lindsey’s.

Rebecca, Jeffrey and I watched a monarch butterfly emerge from its chrysalis. We raised four of them that summer. And the two polliwogs we’d been keeping in Weaverville finally got four legs so we turned them loose.

Rebecca enjoyed three days of ecology classes at Bill Harger’s—they were low key and involved a lot of humanitarian stuff too, which was probably good. I took Jeffrey the second time and spent the whole day but he slept for two hours in their bed, exhausted. The last day I left him at Linda’s, which was much better.

September 2nd was the next time I wrote and Bob and I were at Bear Lake. Florence and Leonard had been on a two- week horse pack-trip into the Jim Bridger Wilderness Area in Wyoming but were back and she was taking care of the children. (I don’t know how she did all this!) On the night of the 31st I’d taken the three children and numerous diapers, clothes, a playpen, etc. to Florence and Leonard’s in preparation for our leaving the next day. Florence was at the Art Center but Leonard was there.

It was cloudy and showering when we started up the trail. The trail was very brushy and we began to get wet. Every leaf seemed to be waiting to dump its load of water on us. My new pack was very comfortable—I carried 30 pounds and Bob 40. “When we were getting close to the lake we passed through a little pitcher plant bog, which included a bear wallow. Here we met a couple on their way out. As we reached the lake we met another couple who said they’d caught some fish the night before. We went around the east side of the lake, scrambling over rocks and through brush. I had troubles with my pack, which flopped around a bit. Kept pushing down on my head when I crawled, my usual graceful method of rock climbing. “

We finally found a nice campsite—good view across the lake and out to mountains beyond. “The lake itself is one of the prettiest we’ve been to—granite cliffs, studded with brush and fir, very deep. We were cold, wet, and miserable. The wind was blowing hard; we were soaked to the waist. Bob heated up water on his stove and we had hot tea and candy before setting up camp. We were using Florence and Leonard’s tent. “

I built a fire in the rocks and heated up water on the iron top that was there. We cooked dinner on Bob’s stove. Went to bed early and wakened often during the night. Apparently there wasn’t a rainfly because I wrote that Bob had put plastic over the tent top and it rustled in the wind all night.

“In the morning Bob was still tired and cold so he slept in. After much struggle with wet, smoky wood I got breakfast. After I’d cleaned up the dishes I left Bob a note and went up the hill behind here. There are a series of small benches rising up to the base of the final cliff. I had a marvelous time exploring—several tiny creeks ran through there and there were numerous little ponds in the granite and mossy miniature cliffs with tiny waterfalls trickling over them. The top pond was the largest and I disturbed some frogs there. I got back at lunchtime. We talked about how good it would be to get the children in here. Bob saying the thing to do would be to get them into one lake and just stay.” (which we did a number of years later although not this lake.)

We had moved into town that Sunday. Washing machine, ducks, cat, children. I’d also prepared and canned five quarts of applesauce that day and picked most of the peaches. Rebecca had started school Monday. I took her the first day and she rode the bus home. Tuesday she caught the bus as usual. She didn’t want to go to Warm Mountain School much so we decided to wait awhile but Jeffrey was very anxious to go. She was much more secure and happy with routine.

“It’s so nice sitting here on the rocks in the sun—and so cold when a cloud goes over! A chipmunk lives nearby and explores the camp frequently. It nibbled at the bar of soap last night.”

Later—“It’s after dinner now. The sun is still tipping the backsides of the spikey ridges around the lake. And it still covers the top of the bare-topped mountain off in the distance. An occasional puffy white cloud hazes its way across above us. We’re sitting by the fire having consumed an enormous meal of bullion, beef stroganoff and chocolate pudding and tea.”

That night the wind blew very hard until about midnight, apparently the last vestiges of the storm. About 11:30 I had to get up so Bob suggested that I take the plastic covering off the tent. It was flapping and making a terrible racket. There was a bright moon and not a cloud in the sky. In the morning when I got up there was frost on the woodpile and on shrubs around camp. By 8:30 our camp was in sunlight and I had taken a quick dip to wake up. Our campsite was at the foot of a big glacial- polished slide.

After breakfast I fixed lunch and we made a rather late start for the area where I hiked yesterday. We planned to go to Little Bear Lake. When we topped the ridge, abut an hour out of camp, we could see Mt. Shasta to the east and right below us, Little Bear Lake. It was a beautiful little lake, much deeper and larger than we’d expected. Very dark green in the deepest parts. It took about ½ hour scramble to get down to it. There were several good campsites in the trees near the outlet and one on a point above the outlet. The lower end of the lake was pretty well crisscrossed with fallen logs. It sat in a granite basin similar to that of Big Bear Lake but there was more vegetation and there was even a tiny patch of snow on the north-facing side. The campsites were cleaner than most and we were very impressed with the place. On way out we followed down the outlet where there was another lake/pond size but deep with shallow areas where a child could play. We talked all the way back to camp about trying to get Rebecca and Jeffrey up there next summer. We contoured around the granite glacial-polished slopes on our way out, coming into Big Bear Lake at the lower end. Said hello to our neighbors and then went on around back to camp. The sun was gone from our camp by 4:15 and from our swimming area by 4:00 so we jumped in as soon as we got there. Bob swam clear around the point to camp but I just went a short distance—am not that strong a swimmer. Much warmer that day. Didn’t need jackets until evening.

We saw and heard Clarke’s Nutcrackers over at Little Bear Lake. That chipmunk was investigating us again. It must have had a good time exploring the camp while we were gone.

Our tent faced the lake and the campfire was between the tent and the lake. Small mountain hemlocks were scattered among the rocks, fox-tail pine and an occasional fir. Most of our firewood was small, dead branches which had fallen from the hemlocks, bark from big downed pieces of fir or hemlock in the talus piles, etc. Some of it was pink from a borate drop that landed in the rocks. Around an inlet from us was an area about 50-feet square where a fire had burned. Four, old paper sleeping bags lay nearby, left by smokejumpers.

It took us 4 hours to hike out including a lunch break. After we got back to Weaverville Saturday I cleaned up, went to the grocery store, and then picked up the children. My descriptions were so detailed and there was a sketch or two so I think we must not have had a camera along.

Sunday the roofers came—they’d brought the asphalt shingles the night before. They left mid-afternoon because of the heat and came back Monday to finish the job. We went out to the ranch with Janet and Mike. The sunflowers were in bloom. Picked a few tomatoes, peas, green beans and blackberries. Janet and Mike picked a few boxes of apples and a bucket full for us as well as a sack full I wanted to give to the Ohdes.

That morning Lewiston school had called to see whether I could substitute for a week for Mr. Giovenetti, who taught 4th and 5th grades, as he had an emergency appendectomy. Linda Lindsey would take care of Jeff and Clarke, and Rebecca would go to Hooper’s after school.

We had the two ducks out on the back lawn in separate cages to keep them from pecking each other and were considering taking them to Janet and Mike’s.

Bob was running around like crazy that afternoon picking up the papers the shingles had been packed in, dumping stacked up branches, hauling garbage and wanting to throw away all the children’s outside toys! “If a new roof does that imagine what a newly painted house will do!”

“I wish he’d slow down some. It worries me when he’s hitting such a hard pace as he has most of this last year. Thank goodness he had the camping trip, wearing though it was. It’s also hard on family relationships when he’s gone so much and when home either sleeping all day or studying.”

Summer Comes to a Close

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July 17, 1971—Jeff got his cast off.

Dinner on Gilda and Sandy Sander’s houseboat at the lake with Bob’s boss, Don Lance, the Sanders, Bob Van Duyn and Elwin Bagley, Roy Blair and Jim Barrett. Most of the men spent the evening talking business but Jim Bob Van Duyn, Gilda and I each took a turn at water skiing.

A few days later we took Rebecca’s friend Nancy with us out to the ranch. About half an hour after I went to bed Nancy woke up and the rest of the night was difficult because she was afraid of the dark. It was very dark out there once the generator got turned off. No night lights, no street lights, just very dark. Not good if you were a nightlight child. Left a flashlight on but its batteries ran down. Finally put her in bed with me. The next day we took Nancy home, then went to Candy and Jim Fields’ house to visit. Ate lunch there and the children all played in the creek.

After dinner that night Rebecca, Jeff and Bob went to Hooper’s to get the ducks; two week old Muskovies. Out at the ranch that weekend I dug a little pond for them under the apple trees. We kept them in the cat cage at night. I started a fence but needed more wire.

Bob had someone come out with Ken Arbo’s backhoe –he dug one culvert, then got stuck up near the bathtub settling-tank. Ken Arbo came out Monday night to get his backhoe but also dug the needed culvert with ease.

Jeff went to Merry Phillips birthday party. While he attended the party Rebecca, Clarke and I went to Varney’s for lunch. It was very crowded and we sat with Ola Peterson, which was a treat. The next day I had to take Clarke to get a DPT shot because Tigger had scratched a fraction of an inch from his eye the day before.

Then we headed for Big Bar and got caught in a tremendous thunderstorm. A cloudburst from about Helena on. Jeffrey and Clarke slept through it until we got to the house but Rebecca awoke at our road so was in on the strikes hitting all around us. We saw a couple of good ones in the Prairie Creek drainage near the switchback. I was a little nervous about getting out to unlock the gate. Of course I got soaked hauling groceries and children from the car to the house when we got home. It was very exciting though with huge raindrops and hail pounding down. “Finally it cleared off leaving the air damp and clear, steam rising from everywhere. We’ll have to watch for smokes for the next week or so.”

Bob had to go to Mt. Meadow Ranch. “They now have a phone from the Siskiyou side but want to have a mobile phone provided for backup. They had a mobile phone for a couple of years but this year one didn’t work and Bob doesn’t think it will now. He said it never should have since it has to go over Thompson Peak.”

I got a long letter from Mary Jo Omstead about Rebecca’s year of kindergarten. Some of which I agree with and some I don’t. She’s so concerned about her social shyness and I figure she’ll eventually work it out and am not too worried. Bob and I had problems what way too and we’ve survived. She used to get stomachaches as a tiny baby when I took her around a lot of people so I think she’s doing pretty well. I never had friends visit my home as she does or played with other girls at all except at school. We lived away from town and also our parents seldom approved of the other kids. Actually I didn’t have any real girlfriends till college. Those I got along with in high school, except for one or two, were just acquaintances. We had little in common. Rebecca is getting more experiences in dealing with people at an earlier age, which I think will save her a lot of agony later. She has learned to enjoy her own company, which I think is important and few learn to do this. “

Herb Upham came out to help Bob work on culverts. I went into Big Bar with the children to get some extra food. Bob seemed to enjoy working with Herb. We were paying him $3 an hour.

Bob decided to not do the septic tank or generator shed that summer. He didn’t have the time or the money.

In early August my mother had a stroke (at age 62) and my notes are filled with communications with my brothers and my dad. I was upset and wishing there was something I could do to help, kind of hard with small children. My oldest brother was living in Seattle (as was my younger brother) and the closest to Nehalem, Oregon. He was also preparing to go back east for a job interview. He was always pretty good about helping out when help was needed though. Our parents retired a long way from all of us because they didn’t want to be a burden. After numerous phone calls, arguments with doctors, etc. and a phone call to a family friend who was a doctor in the Bay Area they had her flown to Seattle. The ambulance plane landed on the dirt runway at Nehalem to pick her up. In Seattle her broken hip was fixed and rehab begun. My father began to spend time staying at my eldest brother’s house and then time in Nehalem to finish up some work he had started on the outside of the house that had to be completed.

That day I wrote “So far today I’ve swept the upstairs, scrubbed out the shower and washed the outside and inside of the two upstairs windows. Did two batches of laundry and took the children down to Little French Creek for an hour. We ate lunch there and they played in the creek. I spent most of my time fishing little rocks out of Clarke’s mouth and giving him big ones to chew on. Very nice down there—cold water, enough shade, water striders, frogs, minnows. Clarke took two steps yesterday. “

There were no more entries until August 29th. Once again I was trying to catch up on the missed days. One important item was that Clarke hadhad his first birthday. He started walking on the 25th, going a few steps and then falling over but was really anxious to go—and so proud of himself. He was also starting to climb everything he could and was quite strong.

We and John and Mary Ann Field were looking into sending children to an alternative school that would be located at Val Harger’s ranch. It was currently being used as a summer ranch for children. An agreement was signed to use it for the first year for free and we incorporated as Warm Mountain School. Mike Looney and Janet Brown would be the teachers and it would start out at two mornings a week. The school would be in the bunkhouse, which needed to be winterized.

Filsen Glanz, a friend of Bob’s, and his wife Kate and their 3-year old son came to stay one night, camping on the lawn at the ranch. He was teaching in New Hampshire.

Rebecca passed into Advanced Beginners on swimming lessons with her 2-days a week lessons. She made a lot of progress over the summer and the little pool at the ranch helped a lot.

In the middle of August we drove to Berkeley, taking Jeff and Rebecca but leaving Clarke in Linda Lindsey’s care, to attend Marily Grey and Eric Wood’s wedding. The reception was held in Tilden Park in a eucalyptus grove. The musicians came to the grove too, which was a nice touch. There was an oboe, a flute and a cello. After the reception we went on the merry-go-round, a large, old fashioned one with music provided from a roll, like a player piano—pipes and drums were activated on the back of a panel. (I hadn’t been on one since I was living at Castle Crags and we went on one at a carnival in Dunsmuir). Then we rode on a little tram in another area of the park. The children loved it. Jeffrey felt very big handing the attendant his ticket.

The Saturday before the wedding we stopped at the Ski Hut and bought a backpack for me. That night we took the children to see The Yellow Submarine, which they enjoyed at one level and we at another. Sunday we visited the Hall of Science—the children kept busy for about 1 ½ hours with all the gadgets. We then went to take one more ride on the merry-go-round (it ended up being four more). After lunch we headed for home.

By the end of August I’d canned 16 quarts of applesauce and picked a lot of blackberries, many near Price Creek and some from the bushes across from the house. I made two pies and over three quarts of jam. Our peach tree was loaded and I picked as many as I could because school was starting soon and we had to move back into town. I spent a lot of time sawing or gathering wood for the kitchen stove during the summer and had taken over completely on the lawn mowing.

June-July 1971

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June 23rd: “Maybe I can write more often now that we’re out at the ranch again.” Moved out Sunday the 20th.

Bob spent most of Saturday helping Rotary build a water fountain by the bandstand. That evening he brought the washing machine out. The previous Saturday Clarke stayed with Linda Lindsey and the rest of us came out. Bob hiked around with Roy Blair looking for property corners. I planted a garden and Rebecca and Jeff each planted small gardens. Sunday he and Bob Grant brought the generator out. Then he made another trip with his car and I with the V.W.

On the 4th we left the children with Linda and went to Cheryl Morris’ high school graduation. Rebecca had kindergarten graduation that day. I’d really become quite fond of a number of that year’s seniors and took cards for some, ecology posters for two, and gave paperback copies of A Sand County Almanac to two others.

My last two days at the Joss House were the 2nd and 3rd.

Rebecca had a 6th birthday party. We invited six children but two were going to be out of town so I called Alice Jones and she brought Nick, Jessica and Cedric over. Fortunately there was just enough of everything to go around. Jan Goodyear helped out.

It was a Snoopy birthday with a Snoopy cake, Snoopy invitations, and a hunt for a Snoopy bone. Finding a bone resulted in receiving a small Frisbee. Rebecca got a baby mallard from the Hoopers but a week later it died. She was heartbroken. We were planning to get two more after they hatched.

Clarke got sick the Saturday we were out at the ranch and up-chucked all over me in the car on the way home. I was supposed to take the three Twight children the next day but couldn’t, of course. He was sick Sunday, Monday and part of Tuesday. Sunday, when I was sitting out on the porch trying to regain my sanity by playing my accordion, Jeffrey hurt his foot. He yelped as if it really hurt but was soon playing again, although limping. Monday I took him to the doctor and discovered he had a broken bone in his right foot, the metatarsal. All he’d done was jump off a small, plastic slide but he just hit wrong. He got a temporary and then Friday, (18th) he got a permanent cast on with a foam rubber pad. It was really hard on him and on Rebecca, because activities were a lot more restricted than they were before that. And I had to carry him until he got the permanent cast.

The following Monday we were out at the ranch but had problems with the generator. Tried to put up the laundry line but after many efforts of untangling it found the hook nearly straight. Hung some clothes up anyway and it fell so hung them on a short line. Tuesday was much better. Took a walk with the children up to the flat in the woods. Rebecca wanted o go on up to the water tank which Bob put up there, so we did. I carried Jeff (and Clarke in the pack) all the way back. We had fun though. It took us over an hour- and- a- half. I had come back for a jar to put a caterpillar in and we dawdled, squatting in the tall grass up near the wild rose bushes to get a rabbit’s view of the world, etc.

The evening of the 25th I was writing by candlelight because Bob was working on the generator. The previous day we’d gone into town and Clarke had developed a fever of over 104. Dr. Breeden’s day off, Dr. Dr. Polka on vacation, Dr. Nielsen’s office said he could see us at 5:45. He had tonsillitis. I’d talked to Dr. Breeden a couple of days earlier about his swollen eye and he had thought then that Clarke might have tonsillitis.

Rebecca talked about quitting piano lessons even though she loved them. Shelly Adrian had told Rebecca she was quitting and that’s when Rebecca started saying that. The she found out that Marion Dano was taking lessons and decided she’d keep going after all, that she would take them “until she was a lady.”

Virgil DeLapp was working on the house again, this time covering the outside of the addition with shingles. We were going to have to get the whole house reroofed and maybe painted. That morning Florence took the children for half an hour while I ran some errands downtown and went to Varney’s where I had coffee and a doughnut with Leonard, Mike Harris, and Bob Grant. Later went to Van Duyn’s for a few minutes with the children, and Marilyn gave Rebecca a yellow scooter skirt (have no idea what that was!).

The next week Bob was going to Bakersfield for a week. I got Rebecca a loose-leaf binder to start a journal. Angenett said Jessica’s teacher suggested this for Jessica. I thought I’d get Jeff to dictate some things to me for a notebook for him. She started writing in it and seemed to enjoy that. Clarke was getting better.

We went out to the ranch and would be there on our own for a week as Bob left the next day. “I get nervous at night without him here-not about being here but about stray people coming in—not that it’s too likely I suppose. Will take the pack upstairs tonight because if there were a fire I’d need it.” (for Clarke) Clarke got sick to his stomach and then broke out in a splotchy rash. I contacted Dr. Breeden about Clarke’s rash and he said to stop giving him campicillin. I’d wondered whether the rash was an allergic reaction and guess I was correct.

Jeffrey was going through a teasing stage but often with surprisingly adult humor. However, he spent a good part of one day echoing Rebecca—most frustrating for her. “I tried doing it to him for awhile and he didn’t like it so maybe he’ll get the idea.”

On the 29th I left Rebecca and Clarke with Linda and took Jeffrey over to the emergency room to get his old cast off and put on a new one. Ran a bunch of errands and then got Jeffrey a dump truck at the Nic-Nac Shack. Figured he needed something to do that didn’t involve running around on the cast and that it would help make up for all the presents his sister had gotten for her birthday. Went back to the ranch. Bob called and didn’t sound very enthusiastic about the class he was taking.

The next day Clarke was happy in his play pen for awhile but then later I put him on the lawn in a 3-foot wide strip of shade where he played with my hat and chewed on dandelion leaves while I cut grass from around the asters. Rebecca played with her dolls near the maple tree by the driveway and Jeff played in the dirt with his dump truck, then on the porch. He couldn’t walk on the new cast yet and was cranky. It was a chore for me during that time hauling him to the outhouse and up the stairs.

Florence called on the 30th to say the rest of the culvert Bob had ordered was in their barnyard. “I think she worries about us.”

Doris called from Weaver Bally and we talked for almost an hour. “It was so good to gab with her—it’s been nearly a month now. She’s enjoying the lookout so far—says the view into the back country is superb.”

July 4th we watched the parade from the phone company balcony. It was shady and a good view. Then we went up to the Woods to swim for awhile, taking turns watching our two youngest. “Bob and I are in a good state right now—excellent, actually, and really communicating.”
From there we went out Canyon Creek for the usual family and friends gathering.

On the 11th Bob left to go to Garberville and not get back until Wednesday but he was out at the ranch with us all that weekend.

I couldn’t get the generator started and called Frank Walden who said he was going to Weaverville and would pick one up at Miller’s for me. Later I was able to get it started. . (I’m guessing I was able to contact Frank before he left.)

Bob had fixed the clothesline and also put up a swimming pool just below the house–3’ x 12’. The doe that had been hanging around (standing on her hind feet to get apples) showed up with a fawn. This was a cooler than normal summer and we’d been having a fire in the wood cook stove every morning.

Thursday, July 8th “I had a big treat. Florence took the children from 10 to 6:00 and I went hiking up Long Canyon. I was really quite excited about it beforehand, which was a mystery to Rebecca!

From the beginning of the trail on it was beautiful. Large bushes of blue ceanothus were in full bloom, their honey fragrance filling the air. As the trail began to climb it was more forested. The East Fork of Stuart’s Fork roared not far from the trail most of the way. Numerous creeks and small streams crossed the trail. It was a warm day and I kept stopping to drink—partly just for the pleasure of my freedom I suppose and partly for thirst. In one spot were azaleas in bloom, tiger lilies, and yellow monkey flowers. I picked an azalea and put it in my hat. Every time I went from shade to sunshine I could smell it.

I ate lunch after walking an hour, where the trail forks, with one branch going to Bowerman Meadows. Foaming water—icy cold. Afterwards I met a family coming out with packs on. The youngest, a boy about 8 or 10, fell right in front of me. I helped him up and they went on their way. From then on it was solitude until I came to the uppermost meadow part of Long Canyon. Here there was a party of 8 or 10 people who had apparently come in on horseback for the day.

I continued on but snow blocked the trail so I followed footprints of other hikers or horses, which zig-zagged up the steep slope. Stopped by the edge of one snow field where the creek had formed snow caves about three feet high. Such cool air coming from them. Went on up to the last narrow pass before Bee Tree Gap. The wind was blowing hard and it was 2 o’clock, and rocks were rolling into the area so I decided to turn back. It was a wonderful day. And to top it off, Florence had dinner for us that night. “

Rebecca stayed overnight in the house trailer with Noel and Florence. We stayed at our place and came out to the ranch Friday.

Six Months in 1971

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January:
Rebecca was taking piano lessons from Mrs. Gott and seemed to enjoy them.

Often I seemed to have had to play catch-up with my journal, trying to remember what happened in previous weeks.

On the 8th we drove to Palo Alto. Connie Martin stayed with the children. On the 9th Bob spent time in the Stanford Library and I spent time in the Stanford bookstore. After lunch we went to Ingrid Woods’ and Steve Cummings’ wedding in the Stanford Chapel where everyone sat in a semi-circle on the platform with them. Music was from a harpsichord. The reception was in Burlingame and Helen Woods made the cake. We gave them a crank ice cream freezer. Ingrid was working for a dress designing shop and Steve was serving two years in hospital work in S.F. instead of being in the army. That afternoon we got a room in a motel on Geary Street in S.F. and that night went to the symphony (my first), conducted by Ozawa. Sunday we looked at the line outside the Van Gogh exhibit at the DeYoung Museum and decided we didn’t have that much time so went to Berkeley and visited with the Lewis’ and then drove home.

The Friday morning of the day we left to go to Palo Alto, Bob had been in Redding as part of a three-person committee going through 38 applications for Superintendent of Schools to choose about six possibilities.

“On the 18th our music class met at DeRosears for a surprise party final. We dressed hippy style. I wore Clarke’s link belt with beads hanging from it around my head, a tie/dye shirt that Scott did for me, Scott’s tie/ dye levis and cowboy boots. Bob had a class so I didn’t think he’d come About 9 he knocked at the door wearing a mop wig and a blanket. Really funny. We had a good time.”

On the 23rd we went to the Trinity Players’ play—Never too Late.

Then we started getting involved in meetings about the proposed Salmon Trinity Alps Wilderness Area. I was going to go to a Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors’ meeting with Leonard in Yreka but decided not to since Clarke and Jeff had been ill. Meetings were coming up the next week in various communities.

Clarke and Jeff had a croupy cough and Jeff had a temperature. Rebecca had had it the previous week and I’d taken her to see Dr. Breeden. Took the boys to see Dr. Nielson in the emergency room. Was up most of the night with them and about an hour with Rebecca who was on a crying jag—maybe a bad dream.

Then no writing in the journal until March 25th, again catching up.

“The first week in February I went to both the evening and afternoon wilderness meetings in Redding. Left the V.W. at Bingham motors and took a cab to the Junior College. Fred Esselink was there and gave me a ride back to the V.W. place. His long red hair and beard caused some raised eyebrows! When I worked in the high school library Fred used to bring photos of the Trinity Alps to show me.

I made my statement in Redding—followed some lumber people. I was really nervous. That evening Florence, Leonard, and Horace Jones came down. A U.S.F.S. panel suggested I speak again that evening so I did. Each meeting was preceded by a slide program (narrated) using many of Alice Jones’ slides. I met Dave Johnson after the evening program—hadn’t seen him since he was best man at Angenett’s and Peter’s wedding. “

The next day Bob and I attended the afternoon and evening meetings in Weaverville (Bob was in in S. California the preceding day). Over 200 people attended each meeting and people of all ages spoke—most in favor of a wilderness area and preferably of expanding it. Our local editor sent no one to the meetings so I wrote a long article on them for the paper a few days later.

Thursday night Alice, Horace, Leonard, Jim Barrett, Bob and I went to Willow Creek to their meeting. Bob gave his talk again, adapting it to the area very well.

“Since then I wrote another article intended for the Recreation Guide of the Trinity Journal but it wasn’t used; wrote a letter to the American Forests magazine concerning John Keats, a representative of the Western Lumber Manufacturer’s Association; wrote an article for the National Parks magazine—didn’t hear back from either of the last two. Bob went to a meeting in Fort Jones with Alice and Horace.”

I was taking a drawing class on Tuesday nights from Marne Wilkins. Was learning a lot but really had to work hard. The three hours “whizzed by”. Bob was taking another administration class.

I ran for the elementary school board (totally forgot about that!). Then I started getting requests to substitute at the elementary school although I could only do it once. Wondered whether that was a coincidence.

Bob was working on a proposal for management within the company to submit to his boss by April 1st. He was offered “a very big job promotion to Bakersfield but turned it down because he felt he hadn’t done enough here yet and because he’d rather live here. The offer really shows his boss has confidence in his abilities though. “

Bob was given a company car to use—a Ford Torino.

I spent an afternoon and evening in Redding about a month before that attending meetings on the Gifted Child. The afternoon was for teachers and about 25 attended. Only 12 people were at the evening one for parents, most from Trinity County.

I was substituting a lot more. Linda Lindsey started taking care of children at her house. Little did I know that this was the start of our great friendship and that her youngest and my youngest would become lifelong friends.

We started having discussions with Humboldt Fir. They wanted to log near the Upper Ranch and had a right-of-way across our place on the original roads. (Access to the ranch had been only trail until logging took place years before). Some of these no longer existed so legally we could probably have kept them out. We were trying to see whether we could get them to build a road across from the house but way up the hill, which would join the future U.S.F.S. road going up to timber in Big French Creek. “If so, Bob may not have to build a bridge.” One day we tromped around up there with Candy and Jim Fields (she’s a part-time nurse and he’s a surveyor for the U.S.F.S.). Looked for a possible route. Humboldt Fir and the U.S.F.S. didn’t agree on Humboldt Fir’s boundaries though.

April 15
Substituted for Mr. Turnbull at the high school, worked for Hardison yesterday and then again the next day for Mr. Turnbull. I took Rebecca to Florence and Leonard’s and Clarke and Jeffrey to Linda Lindsey’s. On the 15th Wendy Omstead came to the house.

One weekend there was a Rotary dinner and Lucille Snyder and I worked on salad preparation for 150 people. I was to slice and butter 15 loaves of French bread, which took most of the afternoon.

Rebecca and I went to Emily Holland’s wedding. Bob had gone to the Bay Area to look for a book.

Easter we had a hunt at 7 a.m. and then another one around 10 over at Florence and Leonard’s. “We are overrun with colored eggs!”

“We’re once again having second thoughts about Humboldt Fir. Rumor has it that the U.S.F.S. will be fighting them in court about the boundaries, and also a 2-year moratorium on clear-cutting for the Forest Service has been proposed in a Senate Committee. If this goes through and further studies indicate that clear-cutting should be stopped the U.S.F.S. may never make the sales up Big French Creek and we’d have the Humboldt Fir road through us for nothing.”

One afternoon Tigger scratched Jeffrey thoroughly—neck, arm, back. Had to take him (Jeff) down for a DPT shot.

May 15
On the 24th of April we started for Oregon. Stayed the first night in Grants Pass. Ate lunch at Castle Crags. It was cold and windy. The children watched two trains and tasted the water from the sulpher spring. Rebecca started feeling ill that day. We drove to Nehalem the next day, arriving about 6 p.m. My parents were very happy to see us. We spent Monday at the beach.

Rebecca probably had a temperature, but she seemed to enjoy herself. “Jeffrey was ecstatic with the waves coming in over his feet. He’d get almost hypnotized and follow the waves out.” Clarke began getting sick. Tuesday we stayed at the house. The next day we left for Seattle. I was concerned about my parents isolating themselves and neither one seeming very happy. We stayed several days with my eldest brother, Ben, and his family. Our children enjoyed playing with theirs—Jeff felt like a big boy playing with cousin Mark and Rebecca adored Dana, who had gotten quite pretty. My younger brother, Richard and his wife, Charlotte stopped by.

Rebecca began to feel better after sleeping a lot and on Friday we took a 15-minute ride to Whidby Island. Bob made up Rotary at Oak Harbor while the children and I ate at the city park along the beach. It was windy and cold but the children enjoyed the playground equipment and collecting shells. Did a bit of tide-pooling after Rotary. There was a tulip show at an elementary school and we visited that—many people were in Dutch costumes.

On the way back to Weaverville we stopped in Leavenworth and took a few pictures of the Bavarian buildings. From there we drove to Madras where we got the last room in one of the few vacant motels.

I started working at the Joss House from 10-5 on Wednesdays and Thursdays the first week in May and would just do that until their summer help arrived. I also had nursery school duty three Tuesdays in a row (parent nursery school so parents participated on a rotating basis). Linda Lindsey was watching the children on Wednesdays and Wendy Omstead coming to the house on Thursdays.

Gladys Ehlerding tested Rebecca (Wisc test) and said she was reading at a 7th grade level and was gifted. Mary Anne and I are considering sending Rebecca and Scott to Douglas City next year.

Fall to Winter 1970-71

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Wednesday – Took all three children, who had colds, to Redding to get Rebecca and Jeff’s feet checked. Florence rode down with us to bring back Uncle Stanford’s pickup. We stopped at Hislops for an hour on the way home and Clarke cried from when we left there until we got home. Ate dinner at Florence and Leonard’s. Bob had gone to Bakersfield and would be back Friday.

We had a week of rain that included a beautiful rainbow one afternoon. By then the children were all well but Tigger, the cat, was sick. Bob and Rebecca took him down to Sally Patton’s for a shot and some medicine.

I substituted Friday afternoon at the high school for Mr. Odell (biological science). Then, that Sunday we went out to the ranch where we picked the few remaining apples. We heard some coyotes. The Virginia Creeper vines on the porch were scarlet.

On Halloween I took the older two trick-or-treating while Bob stayed home with Clarke. When I was a child, we didn’t trick-or-treat. We lived about half a mile from the little village of Castella and our parents wouldn’t have let us even if we’d lived there instead of the state park. A few times we played tricks on children who were brave enough to come up along the dark Highway 99 to our house. Once we put just enough rocks in a cardboard box to make it rattle and dragged it across the driveway with a rope so it looked as if it were moving all by itself. Another time I remember my brothers throwing rotten apples.

Rebecca was a clown again, as she had been last year, wearing a costume Florence had made for her father when he was her age. Jeff was a cowboy with make-up mustache and beard. “They were both cute and so excited. Every time someone pretended not to know him. Jeff would push back his hat and say “I’m Jeffwy”. Rebecca had made a list of people she wanted to see so we did a lot of driving.

On November 1st, a Sunday, we drove out to the ranch. The English walnut was a big butterball of color. Bob had gone out earlier with the store truck to get the generator and brace the water tank to keep it from collapsing in snow. I defrosted the refrigerator and we ate at Big Bar.

Our social activities were increasing, some due to Bob’s new job. But that week I was out four nights: Monday for my music class; Wednesday Bob and I went to a phone company supervisors’ dinner (all those from Garberville were over for Bob’s announcement of reorganization)—Barbara Austin came up to the house to watch the children; Thursday night a nursery school parents’ meeting; Friday I took Rebecca, Jeffrey and Linda Ohde to Redding to see the marionettes in the Sorcerer’s Apprentice and Little Red Riding Hood—Marge Hislop had picked up the tickets for me.

That weekend Bob finished his half of the intercom and started on the smoke detector.

We went to a Chamber of Commerce meeting honoring Moon Lee and Vernon Ryan for 60 years in business. I skipped my music class, being so fond of Vernon.

One afternoon I picked up Rebecca from school and Jeff, and later took Clarke over to Dorothy Goodyear. Took Tigger to Redding and left him at the vet’s. Didn’t get home till about 7:00.

Another Friday afternoon substituting for Mr. Odell. “No problems till the last hour when I was very tired (not much sleep the night before). Bob had gone to Garberville Thursday and stayed overnight. The students I was having trouble with and I decided we were having problems because it was Friday the 13th”.

Bob spent most of that weekend working on the new translator building on Oregon Mountain.

Rebecca, Jeff and I left right after Rebecca got out of kindergarten to pick up Tigger from the vet in Redding. $40.50 worth of medicine and hospital. Had to keep him inside until he finished his prescription and he meowed constantly.

We bought a set of used bunk beds. When Bob brought them home a few days later they reeked of tobacco smoke. We planned to keep one mattress and sell or give the other to Tom’s New and Used. That same day, a Sunday, he spent from 1:00-7:00 working on Oregon Mountain, then went back up again, wanting to get the translators working well before snows started. Hal Goodyear and Leonard helped him for awhile in the afternoon. Raining all day. “He’ll probably be there until midnight.”

I put several coats of varnish on a dresser and we planned to sand and varnish the bunk beds.

At music class Mary Ann Field said that Scotty wanted the 1st grade boys in one room and the 1st grade girls in another next year. He said Rebecca was the only girl he wanted in his room.

Jeff, Clarke, Bob and I went to Rebecca’s kindergarten powwow. “I think Rebecca was delighted to have Bob be able to go.” The next day I substituted at Lewiston Elementary School. “It ‘was tiring but interesting—5th, 4th and 3rd graders seem very young and small after high school age.”

Thanksgiving dinner was at Florence and Leonard’s. Big gathering and Uncle Stanford showed slides of a trip on the Rogue River (jet boats?) he made with Florence, Leonard and Aunt Nell. “The children played hide and seek or bumping down the stairs during most of the slide show.”

It snowed Thanksgiving night and we had about six inches by morning. Bob went up on Oregon Mountain again to make some final adjustments. He said when he left there was nearly 18 inches of snow.
The next three days we worked on the bureaus and beds.

In mid-December Bob was back in Garberville for three days. Then he was in S. California-Bakersfield, Oildale, Victorville, etc. for a week. The week after that we took Rebecca and Jeff and went to Garberville for the Garberville employees’ Christmas party. The children stayed with a sitter at Chuck Meyers ‘ house. We stayed up until 4:00 a.m. with breakfast at 3:00. Bob and I danced with each other for the first time. On the way home we stopped at the Founder’s Tree and walked around in the redwoods in the rain.

And then there was a phone company Christmas party in Weaverville.

My parents sent us a box of holly from their place in Nehalem, Oregon. I wrote to them almost every week. In reading my notes I can see we rarely got up there to see them. And they didn’t come down.

We moved Rebecca and Jeffrey into their room. We were finally going to move our bed from the living room into a bedroom! Rebecca had the top bunk and Jeff the bottom. Clarke would soon join them in his crib but was still in our room in the cradle. “Jeffrey says they are called “bump beds” because you bump your head getting into them.”

Christmas was more fun with them older and taking some interest in how others reacted to gifts. They had enjoyed helping decorate the tree. They opened their stockings on our bed. Rebecca wanted to unwrap and get on to the next while Jeff wanted to play for awhile with each present. Santa didn’t wrap Santa’s gifts so those were seen immediately—didn’t when I was a child either! Rebecca got a Sahsha doll and Jeff a barn with animals. Jeff gave me some nice green glasses, although apparently he had wanted to give me a truck. And Rebecca gave me a blouse although I really liked the bookmark she had made at school.

I won’t give details but it’s worth mentioning, just to demonstrate the time of the 1970s, that my niece, Dana, made leather-link belts for all the cousins and Angenett and Peter’s children made tie/dye shirts. Kathleen also made gifts, including a pillow for Clarke.

Good visits with my brother, Peter, and Angenett. I noted that I really missed the Twight stimulating verbal exchanges with the quiet Morris clan and said that to say that probably sounded awful. That lack of verbal exchange was also one of the things I enjoyed about the Morrises. Funny.

“Rebecca is such a busy girl—wants to be doing something all the time. And demands a lot of feedback. Well, last week I said, (worn out from responding to the constant chatter)—“You’ve got verbal diarrhea”. She knew what diarrhea was but not “verbal”. Bob looked it up in the dictionary with her. She was amused. A little later Jeffrey, holding a plug-in nightlight said, “Children who play with wires get hurt.” We nodded our heads approvingly. “Children who play with wires get verbal diarrhea.”

“The New Year’s party was fun. Interesting people. Bob and I have never gone out on New Year’s before. I met a woman named Candy Fields, whose husband didn’t come because he doesn’t like parties. Both love to backpack. They’ve lived all over the world. I’d met her once before in the doctor’s office –when we both were pregnant–but we’d not talked much. Bob played his banjo and I my accordion, and Bill Harger his guitar. At 2:30 Bob went home. I asked him if he’d mind if I stayed and he didn’t. So we then went to DeRosears for breakfast. Ohdes took me home at 5:30. Couldn’t sleep. Boy, was the next day long! Rebecca went over to Van Duyn’s in the afternoon to stay overnight. Snowing some.”

Adjusting to Three

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And so it began, life with three children, instead of two. Wouldn’t have traded it for anything except I needed another pair of hands. One of the first examples of this occurred when Clarke was 17 days old and I drove downtown, parking in front of Trinity Market. Groggy and tired, I walked across the street to the “dime store”. I carried Clarke in an infant seat and had the other two hang on to me as we crossed. After making a purchase I walked back to the car, holding each child by one hand. Realized when I got to the car that something (someone) was missing. The other two didn’t say anything. Maybe they thought I knew what I was doing. Oh, no…….Put Rebecca and Jeff in the car and raced back across to the store where I found an older woman cooing and chatting with Clarke where I’d left him, in the infant seat, on a space reserved for cutting material.

September 1st, Gil Snyder retired from Golden West Telephone Company and Bob became the district manager. The other employees seemed to be happy that it was him and not someone from outside. It was a great opportunity for him but involved a lot of studying and learning new skills. He began to stay after work for a couple of hours every night.

Had a small 3rd birthday party for Jeff, all I could muster three weeks after welcoming a new baby to the family. The theme was toy soldiers and I made a cake that was shaped like one. I think there were two other boys there—John VanDuyn and Forest Hartman—plus Rebecca.

The last weekend in August we had a backhoe dig a ditch for the new waterline coming from the town system and Bob hired some teenagers to help backfill. For one day with a one-week old baby we had no water.

Rebecca started afternoon kindergarten and enjoyed it. She was really tired by the end of the day though as she had been taking naps off and on until then.

I was nursing Clarke but began to supplement with formula—too tired and too busy to produce much milk I guess. When he was about a month old I drove out to the ranch with the three of them. At the top of the hill, when I got out of the VW beetle to unlock the gate, I heard a sssssssssss.
The left rear tire had a tack in it. I had three choices—walk two miles to the house where there was a phone; walk two miles back down to Waldens’ where there was a phone, if they were home; change the tire. Fortunately we had lunch with us. I backed up to where it was level and started changing the tire. Rebecca distributed lunch, gave Clarke a bottle. I got the lug nuts off only by jumping up and down on the bar. I think we continued on up to the house and changed a sprinkler. We got home around 5:00.

After dinner that night I took Rebecca to the wire sculpture exhibit and art show. When we got home, “Jeffrey stood up on the toilet lid, fell off and chipped three teeth, pushing one tooth up into the gum for a way. “

A few days later Bob and I had dinner with the company boss and his pilot at the Lewiston Hotel.

One day in October, when the children and I were out at the ranch, Rebecca got five stings from wasps. Fortunately they didn’t swell much. She had been sitting on an overturned tub on the porch. We ate dinner at Big Bar on the way home and when Clarke was fussy Marlene Town held him while we ate.

The addition was finished but we didn’t want to move the children into there until we had an intercom. Bob ordered a Heathkit one and “I’m stuck with putting it together.” I think it ended up with me putting one together and him doing the other one. He also ordered a soldering iron and I put that together. “It seems to work o.k.” I’d never done anything like that before. “I kind of enjoy the work while I’m doing it but it takes up what little free time I have and this I resent.”

I took Jeff to nursery school for a couple of days to see how he reacted. He got quite tired but loved to go. I thought he might need something special of his own to counteract the combination of Rebecca and Clarke.

Bob and I both began taking classes on Monday nights—his on personnel and mine music.

“I asked Bob to figure out how much I’d get paid at minimum wages ($1.65) for an 18 hour day, seven days a week job—my present schedule. He figured it on 16 hours and six days with his slide rule–$9,500 a year.”

In mid-October Bob went to Victorville for a week. I went to my music class, leaving Clarke with Florence and getting Kathy Cleaves to stay with the other two.

One evening I took Jeff to the hospital to see whether he needed stitches in his ear lobe. He’d fallen off a chair and hit his ear on the corner of the table. He didn’t.

In October there was a small, traveling circus that came to town. There was one elephant, a trapeze performance, trained ponies and trained dogs. We went in the afternoon and Bob joined us for the last half. Rebecca and Jeff got to touch the elephant, which ate Jeffrey’s cotton candy.

Spring to Fall 1970

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April 14th: Bob was in Laytonville that day. The next day he was in Garberville and then home Thursday night.

That weekend he and Dave rode out to the ranch on a Honda. He cleaned the spring and did some watering. We were having problems with our nearest neighbor out there and his feud with the US Forest Service on access. I took the children out to the airport and we watched two planes take off. Then we went home where I fixed a lunch and we went out to Rush Creek Campground and had a picnic, using a tree stump for a table. They had a good time throwing rocks in the creek and pieces of wood for boats.

“The crew of Apollo 13 is on its way back to earth. An explosion in the main module made them hae to use the lunar module as a source of oxygen. The lunar module and the main module are being brought back together. Carbon dioxide is building up. Also they are worried about a hurricane during the landing.”

Snow flurries on April 26th.

The previous Saturday we had gone out to the ranch. The U.S. Forest Service hd the road cleared Thursday and Friday. We enjoyed being out there again. Threw re lots of apple blossoms, and the lilacs were just starting. Inside the house there were a lot of dead flies and there was mouse dung, which I swept out. Because it was so cold we ate lunch in the car.

Uncle Stanford’s wife, Gertrude’s funeral was during this time. Bob was a pallbearer but I didn’t go. Too much going on and I was really tired. I took the children with me to my check-up –Jeff had such a croupy cough that he couldn’t get his breath. Rebecca got to see blood pressure taken and listened to the baby’s heartbeat. Jeff was put on antibiotics and Dr. Breeden said if got really bad that night to take him to the emergency room.

The day before that I made butter from whipping cream using the mixer. The children were delighted—especially when the buttermilk splashed them.

I went to my music class but left early so Connie Martin (a favorite sitter) wouldn’t have to cope with Jeffrey. I had told her to keep them up as long as possible and they were still up when I got home. He breathed better when he was up.

In May I went to an ecology class in Redding, starting on a Friday night. I went down with Dottie Murphy who taught third grade at Weaverville Elementary School. She was living in a trailer at Indian Creek Trailer Court. While we were at the class I met Warren Bailey and his wife—I had botany and zoology from him when I went to Shasta J.C. Stephanie Mills gave a talk on population We got home around 11:30. The next day the class continued and after fixing breakfast and lunch for Bob and the children I decided I’d better eat elsewhere or “the demands wouldn’t cease”. So I ate at Babe’s and then drove to Redding. I was home by 5:30 and had dinner started when Bob and the children got back from going out to the ranch. That Friday morning the children and I had delivered May baskets to Florence and Doris.

Sunday Bob put up a swing in the cedar tree for the children. I started scrubbing the walls and ceilings in the kitchen. Funny how you go on cleaning binges while pregnant. Later that morning I took the children over to Wilkin’s so we could watch them shear their two sheep and admired the new goslings. “The shearing was fascinating—sheep doesn’t kick around, just lies there.”

“Now we’re fighting in Cambodia—much student reaction in the colleges. “

June 3rd: I worked for Dorothy Underwood in the library that morning—I’d quit May 22nd.

“There was a thunderstorm around Big Bar yesterday afternoon. Bob, on his way to Garberville with Lonny (Pool?) got Lonny to fly over the ranch on their way so he could see what things looked like. The children and I drove out there this evening. We left at 7:00. We met Bob McChesney driving out. He said the fire was up near the upper ranch and under control. Trucks, jeeps and a couple of Hondas were parked in the meadow above the orchard—helicopters kept coming in and landing to load and unload. It appeared to be going up the Big French Creek drainage, looping around the upper ranch, landing in our meadow, taking off and going around the point into Big French Creek. We got home around 9:30.”

My notes now were often long after the fact. Rebecca celebrated her birthday at home with just us and Uncle Peter came over just as they were going to bed. She was pleased. A few days later she had a party from 10-12. Winnie the Pooh invitations went out to 8 children. Cake was Winnie the Pooh also. They made crowns and played pin-the-tail on Eeyore.

Sometime during June there was a meeting with the USFS and others on the proposed wilderness area.

Bob met with some environmental people to fly over the proposed wilderness area. They were going to land at Ft. Jones and hike in to some place near Cecilville and stay overnight. He was to come home the next afternoon.

Bob and Dave Ohde went with Herb Upham to Berkeley where Ted Lewis gave them a grand tour of the engineering department including views of pictures taken under an electron microscope. They stayed overnight with the Lewises. Hard to remember but I think Herb was a promising high school student that both Bob and Dave wanted to encourage.

On our 7th anniversary we drove to Lewiston for dinner and ate at the Lewiston Hotel. Then we drove around the lake and also up to look at the new reflector site.

Ohdes had bees and they gave us some honey they had extracted. They started collecting honey at 9:30 at night and finished at 3:30 a.m.

One evening after work Tom drove out to Trinity Center to look at a large galvanized tank that someone wanted to sell. He bought it. In early July we drove to the McDonald’s place on Coffee Creek to pick up the eight foot galvanized water tank. Bob had spent all the day before building a wooden frame to fit on the Coot trailer. (Coot trailers must have been made to carry the offroad Coot vehicle. I had no knowledge of that. Maybe they used it at the store. I had to look this up.). The McDonalds only used their place in the summer. Their daughter and her family were staying there. There was no power. The place looks out across Coffee Creek toward Billy’s Peak. Deep, irrigated pasture –water from a ditch ran into Boulder Creek. It was cloudy and cool that day. We ate lunch that we’d brought at Uncle Stanford’s visiting with him for about an hour, then drove back to Weaverville. He dropped us off at the foot of our driveway and we walked up to get the VW and drove out to the ranch to watch Bob unload the tank up above the meadow. It was 7:00 by then and we had to get back to town because the Coot trailer had no lights. While Bob returned the trailer I drove down to the A&W and got hamburgers and root beer. We’d had graham crackers and Cool-ade before leaving the ranch.

That Monday Rebecca was sick. After a couple of days she was better but then her temperature went up again. Jeff went to Dennis Hooper’s birthday party. Both children were invited but I kept her home.

Had some good visits with Angenett and children. One day we went swimming with them out at Mule Creek where it runs into the lake. Rebecca and Jeff loved it. They’d never been around that much safe water before and were able to run and splash and play alligator till exhausted. “I wore my pregnancy swimming suit and paddled around a little too.” I remember it was black and had a red rose right over my belly button.

We took the children to the 4th of July parade. I wrote that it wasn’t much of a parade that year. Got a pink helium balloon for Rebecca and a green one for Jeffrey. They loved it when they got them home and could let them hit the ceiling and still have the string within reach. Some “cave men” scared Jeffrey and made him cry. Bob and the two children were sitting in the sun on the curb; I was standing behind them in the shade. I tried to get to him in time but didn’t make it. I remember cave men in a parade in Dunsmuir, one of the few we ever went to, coming up to me –all sweaty and scary. After dinner that Saturday we went out to the ranch. Really hot out there too. “I started out the day removing a mouse nest with dead mice from the closet and scraping a maggoty one up off the floor. Ugh.” After breakfast of bacon and pancakes Bob mowed the lawn, which was very deep. Rebecca worked voluntarily in a phonics book while he mowed. Jeff colored, played with various toys. I let them run through the sprinkler before naps and later. “I spent most of the day sponge-mopping the floor-made me feel a lot better about the mice, flies, etc. Also weeded the strawberry patch which is being thoroughly chewed by grasshoppers.”

When we got back to town around 9:30 at night the house was hot and crawling with ants. Got the children to bed (Jeff with a temperature of 102) “sponge-mopped from our bed in the living room to the kitchen to get rid of any sticky places and to squash ants. Then started on the stove area, which was swarming. Bob found an army of them coming into the house up the wall of the addition. He soaked the area with water and washed off the wall, which seemed to help. Was up about every half hour that night with Jeff whose temperature was 104 at 7 a.m.”

The next day was my check-up and I’d lost four pounds. Rebecca went to Jessica’s birthday party. I took Jeff to see Dr. Breeden who prescribed some stuff. That night was another croupy night for him. He was better the next day but still not well. I took Rebecca to Mary Ann Field’s for Spanish lesson. (I’d forgotten we were trying to do that with our eldest children. Not sure that lasted very long. Maybe with Maria?)

Bob went to a historical society meeting to report on the smoke/fire alarm he had installed for the museum.

It was September 11th before I wrote anything again in my journal. Clarke Stanford Morris was born in early August! Took him a long time to decide it was time to arrive and then came quite suddenly. Dr. Breeden, rushing, was locked out of the hospital and that created a bit of a stir. Then someone momentarily put his cap on over his eyes.

“Three is a lot more than two so far as care and maintenance are concerned.”

1970 Arrives

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This was just a really bad year for childhood illnesses. Sometimes a couple of other parents and I would trade off on having a “play day” at our respective houses. One Friday afternoon, after hosting: Mary Beth and Debbie Kaz, Nancy and John Van Duyn—Rebecca got sick and by Saturday was really sick. She didn’t eat all day and couldn’t even hold down juice. Sunday she was better but had itchy spots on her back. Jeff developed some blisters and I suspected chicken pox, which turned out to be correct. A week later Rebecca got something else that included a hugely swollen gland in her neck. No antibiotics for the chicken pox for either of them but this needed antibiotics.

Bob went to Garberville that Monday and Doris picked up my sitter (also took her home) and she and I went to the music class. Tuesday he called and said they were having to work late into the night and he wasn’t even sure he’d even be home Friday.

“Am quite tired—guess mostly due to pregnancy. Think this will be another August baby.” I had some worries this time about a possible miscarriage and had to spend some timem, off and on, lying down.

The children weren’t well at Christmas but a few days later were healthy. At least we had lights and water that year. The children enjoyed decorating the tree. “Jeff spent most of his time holding and admiring decorations.” We put a little tree in their room, complete with a small string of lights. The family Christmas dinner was at Dick and Kay’s.

I’d gotten way behind on ironing what with sick children and Bob and I seemed to get colds fairly often—(when kids got sick) plus my own busyness so took it to Debbie Mortimeyer. She also ironed sometimes when we were at the ranch in the summer where there wasn’t enough electricity for an iron.

I took the children to see Ring of Bright Water. They enjoyed it. Took apple cider and cookies, which helped. Bob got home that night, around 10, from an overnight trip to Mad River.

After a very tragic fire down the street from us, that took the lives of two children and severally injured another, the town was in shock. Bob talked in terms of setting up smoke detectors in the house. “We’re wondering if eventually building laws will be such that no house will pass inspection unless smoke and fire detectors are installed. No different than safety belts.” I didn’t realize until typing this that smoke alarms weren’t common then.

January 6th “Must do something I really enjoy that means something to me. Haven’t taken a long walk by myself or spent a morning bird watching in years. Feeling depressed about it tonight.”

On the 22nd I wrote “Bob spent last week going back and forth between Weaverville and Mad River, arriving home Friday night. That Monday I went to Big Bar to hear Biz Johnson speak on water and mining claim problems. Roast beef dinner and a drink for $3.15—“delicious”. I rode down with Dave Ohde and was glad I didn’t have to drive in the rain. “Biz Johnson didn’t have much to say but Hazel Wilburn had some specific things to say.”

1970
This is a photo from 1968 but will help readers understand what Bob was working on and how excited people were to get mobile phones.

Bob and I went to see Romeo and Juliet. It was well done. Ohdes were there and we went to their house for awhile afterwards.

Marne Wilkins quit work at the library and Dorothy Underwood took her place. I learned that I’d placed first in the civil service Intermittent Ranger exam, 88.89 on the written and 92 on the oral and education exam.

Bob was working on his project every night. I wish I could remember what it was now.

Weaverville became part of the widespread flu epidemic and Rebecca was the first one to come down with it in our household. I stayed home from work to take care of her. On February 16th her temperature went up to 104.6 twice. I took her to see Dr. Breeden and she was put on antibiotics but the temperature remained high. By the 19th she was finally recovering and Jeffrey was getting sick. She still had bronchitis and looked awful but was better. The night of the 16th we were up with her a good part of the night. I kept sponging her “She’d sleep for an hour, then wake up crying. After being comforted she’d sing for awhile and go back to sleep. At 5 a.m. –temperature 104.4 we put her in the bathtub for 20 minutes to try to cool her off. At 7 a.m. it finally dropped. I ended up staying home from work all week.

Bob worked on putting cedar boards in the addition that weekend and I’d gone to see the movie Sweet Charity with the Ohdes.

The previous week we had gone to Redding to hear Paul Erlich speak on population. That was kind of a strange experience. Here I was pregnant with our third child and going to hear about how there were too many people being born. Not only that but I had to use the restroom just before people were allowed into the auditorium (too many had shown up to all fit) and when I got out my companions were gone! They’d gone inside and I was stuck in the lobby. It was shown on TV there but I wasn’t a happy camper. When the program was over they came out and decided to take me for ice cream. Good decision.

One week we tried to go out to the ranch but the road was closed by a dirt slide just above Walden’s. We walked up the road a little way, went back to the car and got our lunch, and then sat by a small stream that had a moss covered waterfall and ate.

Bob and Jim Pierce brought up a chair we had bought from Jim’s parents and we planned to also purchase a couch. Paid only $65 for them.

In late February Bob walked out to the ranch. He found that there was a big washout at the second culvert below the house—25 feet deep and 50 feet long. “He’s quite discouraged and is actually speaking in terms of trading it for land closer to town and more accessible. “

We went to a dinner at the Country Kitchen sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce for Citizens of the Year. Lucille and Gil Snyder and Al Wilkins received awards.

Bob flew to Victorville and would return on Friday.

My monthly checkup—I’d gained eight pounds.

“Last week was awful. Monday and Tuesday afternoons I worked from 1-5 in a training session at the Joss House. Thursday and Friday Dorothy Underwood worked my morning shift at the library while I substituted for Mr. Clark-both days. “

And suddenly it was March 17th, a Tuesday. Bob went to Garberville Monday night and would be back Friday night.


Chopping block and seeds

Kay had a boy—Michael David Morris. Jeffrey had a very bad, croupy cough. Nancy Van Duyn came over after ballet, as she usually did. Marilyn wanted me to watch Nancy and John the next afternoon and I wanted to monitor Jeff’s cough so I decided to be home for that and then work at the Joss House Friday afternoon.

In late March we left Rebecca and Jeff with Florence and Leonard for a few days while we went to the Bay Area. My brother and his wife were out of town and loaned us their apartment for a few days. We went to UC Berkley campus where Bob spent some time in the engineering library and I walked around. We ate lunch in the student union and went to the campus bookstore and a few others. Went to Mr. Mopps. Went to San Francisco to see the Committee but it was sold out so we went up to Bocca Ball where three people sang operatic parts, interspersed with piano and accordion music. Very enjoyable even though drinks were “3.50 each time”.

“The North Beach area is really hippy-two different restaurants we went into—one in Berkeley and one in Palo Alto– had signs in the windows saying “No Bare Feet”. We stopped in a hippy button store and got a few and a poster.

The next day we went to Palo Alto and spent most of the afternoon on the Stanford campus. Ate dinner at the Black Forest Restaurant with Gene Ammon. Afterwards we went to his apartment to talk awhile. Stayed in a motel in Palo Alto.

Thursday we searched for an Indian storybook doll for Rebecca and finally found one. Bob ordered a book and we bought a couple of Beatrix Potter books for the children. Stopped for half an hour to talk to Janie Nelson and then visited with Hans Nelson where he worked for Geologic Survey in marine geology. Hans was a seasonal naturalist at Crater Lake the first summer I was there. He showed us a lot of the equipment he uses. We also visited briefly with Mrs. Anderson, Bob’s former landlady. Got home late Thursday and picked up the children Friday morning.

The day before Easter Bob took the kids down to a grassy hillside to fly kites.

“That vacation trip was really nice: dinners without constant interruption, conversations on an adult level; browsing through bookstores.”

Fall 1969

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It was almost two weeks into September when I played catch-up with my journal, noting only that I’d taken Jeff to see Dr. Polka because he had developed a terrible, croupy cough.

We’d promised Rebecca a backpack trip that spring and, although she probably didn’t remember that promise, decided that this was the time. She was really excited about it. We left Jeffrey with Florence, hoping he wouldn’t keep her up at night, and drove out Canyon Creek, stopping at the cabin, where Hurds and friends were staying, to borrow a cup and spatula.

We headed up the trail—me with the three sleeping bags, Rebecca’s blanket and the camera, and Bob with everything else—including his attaché case! Headed up the trail about 11 a.m. She did very well although fussing sometimes. She wanted to climb every rock along the trail. All these years later I still can’t believe we took a 4-year old that far, about four miles, to the Sinks. There was lots of dogwood, big Douglas firs, and cedar but no water. Fortunately we’d taken a canteen. I played games of “do you think there’s an elf behind that rock”?, hide-and-go-seek, and other diversions but eventually we hit a stretch out in the sun where she started crying. About then, Bob, who had often gone ahead and then come back to check on us, came back and said the camp was just ahead and she ran to catch up with him.

The Sinks got that name because water goes underground there and then comes up again. There were big cedars and maple trees. There was trash but we went across some rocks and found a nice spot where the two branches of the creek joined. Here there was a pool with a little beach of white, granite sand. We cooled off and Rebecca even gave her little doll, John, a swim. Back at camp Bob built a stove, using rocks and a stovetop from another site. We ate dinner and Rebecca helped wash dishes while Bob studied. She was up and down to the creek many times. “Before going to bed Rebecca asked Bob about tigers and he said there weren’t any, but might be mountain lions. Very reassuring! But he told her they were afraid of people.”

Right after we bedded down a doe with large twin fawns came tromping around. Rebecca had chosen a camp spot about 50 feet from our sleeping bags and I asked her if she would be more comfortable with us. She was glad to move. The deer made a lot of noise and I think I’d have wanted to move closer too.

At breakfast Rebecca mixed the pancake batter and washed all the breakfast dishes, except for the griddle. She loved it! “The dish washing pans were on two stumps and she was just the right height for them.” Later she spotted a large hornet nest up in one of the maples (Bob had seen it earlier).

She seemed quite tired that morning so I suggested we leave earlier than planned and it was a good thing we did. She got more and more tired and fussy. After lunch she wanted to lie down on every flat rock with her blanket. I began to think she was coming down with something and she began to complain of a stomachache and a headache. When we got home she had a temperature of 104 and complained of being cold. While Bob took the store truck out to the ranch to get the washing machine I called the hospital and Dr. Polka saw her and said she had tonsillitis. Frank Hicks opened the drugstore to get medication for her. I felt terrible that she had walked that far while she was so sick. The medication must have taken immediate affect because by the next day the fever was gone although she was fatigued and cranky.

In reading my notes I’ve been surprised that the children were sick or had colds as often as they did. I guess that’s normal for small children but all these years later I didn’t remember the frequency.

September 10th—I took the children over to Hooper’s and I went to work at the high school library. “Pay is $2.34 per hour and I work from 8:15 to 12:15. With that salary I can just pay a sitter, taxes and maybe make $4 a day. If it doesn’t go up in a few months I’ll quit. My job is to police a study hall and do librarian work also. Marne Wilkins works from 12:30 to 4:20. “

Kathleen was coming to our house after school again.

That weekend we went out to the ranch. Bob went with us but then drove the truck home. I picked some strawberries, green beans and lettuce. And some squash to take aback to Weaverville the next day. Picked lots of apples and put them in boxes in the car.

“I think Rebecca’s unwinding a little. She and Jeff have had other children around for three days, morning and afternoon. She can’t take the lack of privacy.”

My next entry wasn’t until Sept. 22nd and I mentioned being tired and that “Seems as if I’m on my feet all day—in the library and at home.” That Friday I’d worked all day because Marne had to be out of town. “6th period was terrible.”

Rebecca and Jeff began staying in the mornings at Dorothy and Jim Pierce’s house. They lived just a short distance down the street from where we did. They had two boys, seven and five and the 5-year old was home mornings. Our two and Ronny, the younger boy, seemed to get along well. Dorothy even made Rebecca a pink plaid duffle bag because she went there in her pajamas and then changed into clothes.

Bob had a cement truck come and he and Bill H., and the driver poured the walls and floor for the sump. Bob didn’t get through until nearly nine.

September 23rd, Bob had to leave for Fresno. He got back around 1:00 a.m. Thursday morning. Brought a cable car for Jeff and a Snoopy ring for Rebecca. That Friday I substituted for coaches. If the high school needed a sub they’d pull me out of the library. “It was really a frustrating, ridiculous experience as half the school was gone.” Florence invited us over for a venison dinner, which was nice. Saturday I drove to Redding to take a civil service test for an intermediate ranger, hoping for some part-time work at the Joss House.

The previous week, two boys I’d taught in fifth grade were using guns and one accidentally got killed. Really upset me for a while. Nice youngsters.

November 8th I wrote that we had moved back into our house after spending three weeks with Florence and Leonard because our sewer completely stopped functioning. But by November 8th we were all hooked up to the town system—the pump installed in the sump, etc. Bob worked evenings and weekends to get it done—sometimes until 11 o’clock at night. I did a lot of backfilling with the ditch and cleaning dirt off the road.

Rebecca was taking ballet from Marilyn Van Duyne. She loved her tutu and didn’t think it at all funny when Grandpa Leonard asked her whether that was her fourfour.

One night Marilyn and her daughters (Jane and Nancy), Doris (and her daughter Linda), Rebecca and I went to Redding to see Peter and the Wolf and parts of Swan Lake and the Nutcracker Suite. Marilyn brought sandwiches; Doris tickets; and I took everyone to the restroom. After the lights went out we munched tuna sandwiches and pickles and after the program we went to Sambo’s where we sat with Bev Forero and sons. We used to travel a long way for a bit of culture!

I took the two children to the homecoming game because Cheryl was running for homecoming queen. Rebecca knew a number of the people who were there and said, “Mommy, the whole world came!” We left at halftime.

Marilyn, Doris, Bev Forero and I went to see a modern dance program. “A mixed color group. Creative and varied. I didn’t know so much could be said in modern dance. Beautiful bodies.”

Bob was gone quite a bit in October. Several trips to Garberville. He and I took the children around trick-or-treating on Halloween. Rebecca was a bit hesitant about knocking on doors but Jeff just marched right in.

We were trying to make sure none of our apples went to waste. One weekend I took Kurt Parkan out to pick for his family. Another Hal, Dorothy, and Gail Goodyear came out, and another Doris, Eric and Linda Ohde.

One night Marilyn, Jane, Nancy, Rebecca and I went to Redding to see a marionette program –Jack-and-the-Beanstalk and the Three Billy Goats Gruff. It was well done.

On November 8th I cleaned house and Florence helped me move stuff from their place to ours because Bob had to work up on Oregon Mountain all day.

Two weeks later I wrote that Bob had installed a speaker that he had originally made for Nancy and David Adrian but they didn’t need anymore so we could finally listen to records.

We started trying a new baby sitter off and on, Maria Diaz. She was from Brazil and had moved to the U.S. three years ago. She was going to the high school as a foreign exchange student and was 22.

Bob had gone to the ranch to work on the tractor. It needed new spark plugs and he was going to drive it down to near Walden’s where I was to pick him up. I was in the middle of making a pie when he called to say he was leaving the ranch. So I finished the pie and did some errands and ended up being an hour late to get him. I was so sure it would take him two hours but he said an hour and a half. Felt really bad when I finally got there because he was so cold.

I started going to a music class taught by Dick DeRosear at the Elementary school—a rhythm class for adults that was the same as what he taught children. There were about ten of us there.

My job was pretty frustrating. Got tired of disciplining. And it was also really cold in the high school library. The heating system was blowing cold air in.

Rebecca looked at the pink clouds one morning and said, “Maybe it’s getting ready for a pink rainstorm.”

August Ends

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Late July: had green beans, lettuce and squash from the garden tonight. My hands were getting black lines in them from the apples. Well, and probably the blackberries.

After a breakfast of applesauce, French toast and bacon, I made a lunch, Bob mowed the lawn, and we left for Ironside Mt. Lookout arriving there a little before noon. We stopped first in Big Bar to get the ingredients for ice cream. “Just as we got there a car containing John and Judy Schilling and son, Jeffrey, drove up. So we all chatted, ate lunch, made ice cream and ate it. They left around 3:30 and we about an hour later. It was very nice seeing Doris again—I miss talking to her in the summer. They have a tent set up for Eric and Linda when they’re there.”

Lots of clearcuts to be seen from Ironside and one big cut just before reaching the lookout—really a mess. Eric and Linda go down to a deep hole fed by a spring in this clearcut area and swim in it. I took up a few apples, applesauce and squash.

From the lookout we could see all of the New River area, Daley Ranch, Moss Lumber and Salyer. Could look out across to Potato Mt., Mary Blaine, Pony Mt. and Limestone Ridge. Lots of fires started in the New River and Six Rivers areas from the last storm. We could see smoke coming from Grouse Creek.

Monday evening Bob called at 5:00 to say he wanted to stay in town that night to finish up some work as they were really swamped.

Both children played a lot in the plastic pool that afternoon. “Rebecca is doing much better. She is really quite a complicated little individual and it’s hard for me to see the whole picture. She’s reading , and re-reading, Bronson’s book on Coyotes—also her book on the American Indians. She seems to enjoy the Burgess books a lot and has a book of poems from the library called “Just Around the Corner”. “

A few days later Bob needed to stay in town again. He was going to work on the translator with Jim Austin the next day and on pipe fixtures at the house in the afternoon. After he got home he saw something that needed correcting so went up and worked on it more, taking Dave Ohde with him. He was hurrying and so something went wrong and he went up again that night and worked on it. “He called from Oregon Mt. at 10:30 saying he was just leaving. I suggested that he stay in town another night rather than coming clear out to the ranch. He sounded so tired.”

That day I had baked two apple pies and frozen one. Also made chocolate chip cookie dough but only one batch of cookies because the house was getting quite warm from the oven. “Rebecca and Jeffrey ate up under the apple tree. She wanted a lunch menu so I put what was to be for lunch on a green folded paper entitled-Menu—Rebecca’s Tree House. “

The next day I baked the rest of the cookies and worked on the fence around the little pear tree. The children stayed in the orchard with me, munching apples, until Rebecca took Jeffrey down to the house and read a book to him for over half an hour. I nailed together some 2 x 4s, plywood and a small log to make another longer table under the apple tree. I added to Rebecca’s menu and the three of us ate lunch up there.

When Jeff wants his shoes and socks off he says, “feet off, feet off.” He wants three or four books read to him when he goes down for a nap or at bedtime.

I was reading a book by William O. Douglas called “My Wilderness” about the Pacific Northwest. He had hiked and camped in that area since boyhood and did a wonderful job of describing it. He also talked bout areas he used to reach by trail that now had paved roads into them.

August 1969

Angenett and children arrived on a Tuesday and stayed overnight. They played in the sprinkler and the little pool. We made home-made ice cream. The next day we ate breakfast in shifts. Bob and Jeff first because he had to go to work. The rest of us took a walk up through the meadow. After lunch they played some more and Nick helped me pick apples for them to take with them when they left that afternoon to go back out to Coffee Creek. Angenett and I had a good visit. After they left the two children and I took naps.

A couple of days later Bob brought home the news that Cheryl Morris and Janet A. had been in a car accident, totaling Janet’s car. Cheryl had some puncture wounds in her knee.

Made yeast cinnamon rolls and helped Rebecca make cookies. She was getting quite good at using measuring spoons. Picked nearly a gallon of green beans from our garden. After lunch we drove down to the creek and the children played in the water for about an hour. Both were getting more used to moving water and slippery rocks.

Rebecca was reading a book about babies—how they are conceived, etc. I read it to her a couple of times first. She was very interested and treated it very matter-of-factly as if it were any library book but slightly special.

One Sunday we took the children to Florence and Leonard’s and went out to the lake to join Gilda and Sandy and the Riordans on the Sander’s raft. We all went in their boat out on the lake to water ski. Bob came right up on the first try—hadn’t skied for seven or eight years. I’d never done it and it took me many tries but I finally made it and was up three or four times. Once I figured out that my left leg was stronger it made getting up easier. We went back to the raft for drinks and dinner. The next day we were both very sore.

We now had two ditches across our driveway in town (top and bottom). The plan was to have a pipe going down to a sump by Oregon Street and pump from there up into the sewer district pipe.

After a trip to Redding to see the pediatrician we learned that Rebecca would need to start wearing a brace at night to help correct her toeing in. We’d need to take an old pair of high-top shoes down to have them attached to a metal brace. Also had to order new corrective shoes for both children. Rebecca and I went to lunch at Sambo’s afterwards where I saw my Shasta College speech and drama instructor. She remembered me after she learned my former name.

Out at the ranch again, a couple of days later, I did two batches of laundry; baked 4 dozen cookies; went to Big Bar and bought oil for the generator; went to Price Creek and picked blackberries. Gave Rebecca an extra nickel on her allowance because she did such a good job of babysitting Jeff by picking blackberries for both of them and playing with him in the car. After lunch all of us napped. I sorted berries first though, setting aside four cups for a pie, freezing three pints, and saving enough for dessert.

On August 21st I borrowed Florence and Leonard’s car, with air conditioning, and took the two children to Quincy to see Peter and family. Peter was going to Forestry School there. “It sure takes a lot longer to drive and feed, give drinks, pick toys off the floor, etc.” with just one adult. The Forestry Camp was off a dirt road about 10 miles from Quincy. They were living in one side of a duplex. The children’s beds were on a long, screened porch. We slept in a tent cabin where Angenett kept their clothes. Friends of theirs arrived shortly afterward with three children. Angenett took us to Nancy and David Adrian’s while she did laundry. They were living in a big house but were about to move. The next day we left for Weaverville. When we got there, around 4:00, we had to walk up to the house because of the ditches. I left the children in the house and then made 3 wheelbarrow loads up to the house. We were all exhausted.

The following day I put gas in Florence and Leonard’s car and traded the car for our truck. Went to Trinity Gas but no one was there to put the gas tanks in the truck. Worked on the ditch for 20 minutes, but it was hot. Vacuumed the house. Children were coming down with a bug. Went to the gas company again but it was 5:00 and they were closed. The people at Wards called Carol Weingardner for me. He had apparently driven around town looking for the truck and had gone home. I was really embarrassed. Went to his house and he traded tanks for me. They were going out and we had delayed them. Drove to Big Bar, ate a sandwich and salad there. Went home, put children to bed, hauled things from the truck. Set sprinklers in the garden. Bob must have been out of town because I was wondering what he was doing that night.

Next day—kids with fevers. Bob called saying he’d be home around 9:00 or 10:00 that night, then called a little before 9:00 pm and said he was in Redding and would stay in Weaverville that night.

By Saturday we could drive to the first turn on the Weaverville driveway. Took Jeff in to get medication.

Tuesday was Jeff’s 2nd birthday and he loved it. Florence and Leonard gave him a big cab with a trailer van with four horses in it; a stick horse from Rebecca who also received one, at her suggestion; and some wooden cars. Grandparents came for dinner and the cake was shaped and decorated like a truck. The next day I went over to the high school to talk to Marne Wilkins about my job in the library. I would have the morning shift and she’d take the afternoon. Nice library in the new high school. The down side would be having students using the library for study hall.

On the 31st I drove to Big Bar where we got gas for the car and the three containers filled for the generator. We ate lunch at Town’s—grilled cheese sandwiches for the children, hamburger and coffee for me. I was still making applesauce and jelly.

Florence and I talked about doing a book together with me doing the writing and her the illustrations. Sure wish that had happened!