Photo near Glennison Gap
The day after my 33rd birthday I wrote that ”it was not the best one but typical of ordinary days. Bob had stomach flu the night before and was home in bed all day. I did a lot of housework. He gave me two blouses and a denim mini-skirt; Jeff a brightly flowered cookie can (I just gave that to Good Will a few months ago—couldn’t remember where it had come from, sorry Jeff); Rebecca a Teflon cake pan. I was up most of next night not feeling well. Took a nap when the kids did. “
“We had snow this last week and the children played with the disk and plastic bathtub this weekend. Clarke loved sliding in the bathtub—when it would tip over he’d lie there on his back, clutching the sides—like a little stuffed doll. Rebecca and Jeffrey were pulling on snow-covered branches knocking snow off on each other’s heads.”
Friday (10th) Bob, Rebecca, Jeffrey and I and Jenni Hooper went to Redding to see the Ballet Celeste group put on the Nutcracker. We gulped a hamburger there and then went to the Civic Auditorium. Saw Kay and Dick there with Michael, Kathleen, and Kenny and Karen Austin. Van Duyns came bringing Linda Ohde and Liquita Weldon. Eventually all the children ended up on the main floor with Van Duyns. It was a lot cooler there. The performance was pretty good—the children seemed to enjoy if. We had trouble keeping Jeffrey awake because he’d not had a nap. Went to Sambos afterwards for sundaes, which took forever because there was only one waitress—we were with the Van Duyn group. John and Jeffrey had both chosen Mickey Mouse shirts for the occasion. Got home around 11:30. Clear although it was snowing when we had left Weaverville.
Saturday Bob went to Redding. I’d left my purse at Sambos so he picked it up while he was down there. Fortunately everything was still in it.
Sunday he went up on Oregon Mt. to check the translators and get a tree. We had about 8 inches of snow on the ground and it was still snowing. He got a sugar pine.
Sunday morning I walked downtown and went over to Florence and Leonard’s to try on the patchwork skirt Florence made for me. She did a beautiful job. Bob bought a jersey blouse to go with it. She also made a fringed shawl. She was making skirts for Rebecca, Robin and Noel also. When I got home I made the children go out and play because I’d had such a good time. They had a good time. Linda Lindsey had taken Clarke for overnight on Friday, which was a big help.
Bob got appointed to the Trinity County Air Pollution Board along with Vic Rose (from Trin-Co) and Rev. Richards (Baptist Minister).
On Friday, the 16th I substituted for Tom Clarke (business class) and also worked in the office a little while. That night Bob and I went to the Rotary Christmas dinner. I wore the beautiful patchwork skirt and had my hair put up right after school (Very rare occurrence). Had many compliments on the outfit and the hair. Saturday we went to Garberville to their Christmas dinner. We took Rebecca to Van Duyn’s who took her to see Santa Claus and to her teacher’s wedding, which was at 4 p.m., and then to Florence and Leonard’s afterwards. Jeff and Clarke went to Linda Lindsey’s. She took Jeffrey and Ronald to see Santa. Florence picked them up around 5. Then they got Anne Armstrong to babysit in the evening while they went out. Late Sunday morning they took the children to our house, along with Jan Goodyear.
We had a good drive over—very pretty—clear. Snowy mountains above. The willows along the river were red and yellow stemmed. Saturday night we went to the Garberville phone company dinner at Tarentino’s in Redway. We stopped to look at the work being done on the new commercial office. Sunday it was clear on the coast but we ran into fog on Berry Summit and were in it from there to Weaverville. We came home, ate a sandwich, changed and went to Senta Moore’s for an hour for her open house.
I’ve been working a lot on making Christmas presents. Sunday night Bob put up the tree and the children and I decorated it. Clarke was very good about leaving the decorations alone. Bob also put up the four light fixtures in his study Sunday night.
I made some clothes for Rebecca’s Sasha doll, a placemat and joke crying towel for Jane Van Duyn, a book for Michael and one for the Van Duyn baby (plastic pages sewn together); helped Rebecca and Jeffrey make gifts for each other—a salt- box bank for Jeff and a hat for Sasha (it started out as a marble sack); a contact- paper covered cardboard box (toy box) for Clarke from Jeffrey and a stuffed horse from Rebecca. Rebecca made a gift for Bob and me at school. Jeff covered a plastic wastebasket with drawings for Bob. I got him to put cloves in an orange for me.
Bob brought home gifts from the Sanders and Van Duyns. I picked up a box load of clothes at Jones’ today—recycled from Peter and Angenett’s children.
Jenni Hooper was here for three hours and the children made salt and flour Christmas- tree decorations.
On the 24th we ate dinner with Fred and Jeanne Meyer and family, including her parents. Then we drove around town looking at lights and finally home to sing a few carols and hang up stockings. I was up later doing gift- wrapping. Was awake late, thinking.
In the morning no one woke up until 7:30. I took stockings into our room. Had to wake Clarke up so he could play with his stocking gifts. Bob told the kids he heard someone take his car keys during the night and had heard the trunk slam. He and Rebecca and Jeffery went out and they brought in a long, heavy package (a new screen to show our slides). We’d been showing them on the refrigerator.
Rebecca got a watch from us and a Gregor doll from Santa. Dana gave her a loom and she soon made two hot pads, Jeff got a bulldozer and a fire engine from Santa and a GI Joe from Florence and Leonard (I was glad he had no concept of military in conjunction with that). He seemed to enjoy being able to dress and undress it without having someone yell at him for playing with their doll. I gave Bob a harmonica, the Trinity, and a note saying I’d pay for ½ of the blackboard for his office. He purchased tickets for Swan Lake for Rebecca, himself and me and an extra for Linda Ohde if Rebecca wanted her to go.
Saturday we went over to Florence and Leonard’s where, for the first time for me, I met many of Linda Lindsey’s relatives—her sister Jeanne and family and a brother Bill. After they left Florence had dinner for Alice and Horace Jones, Dixon and Heather, Walter and Dorothy Miller, Dick and Kay and family, Aunt Nell, etc.
The next day I called my parents and talked to them and my brother Richard and wife who were there for Christmas.
Senta took care of Clarke and Scott at Linda’s and the rest of us went out to Slate Creek to slide in the snow. We were going to meet Nancy and Florence and five more kids there. Ours were having a great time when a highway patrolman drove up leading three carloads of children to our spot. So we left and went back looking for Florence. They’d just arrived at a place near Kinney Camp and were tramping snow to get there. We went with them and Jeff started collapsing from cold and hunger. It was really hard work for little legs to go through the snow. About a hundred yards from the road we stopped and ate lunch standing up. Finally emptied most of a thermos of hot water I had with me over each of his feet, which helped a little. Struggled back to the car where he and others warmed up while the older children played.
I subbed for a week and two days in Mr. Ehlerding’s classes—German, Geometry and Trig. Right? I had the German I classes looking up information about Germany for brief reports and also, Walter Miller was good enough to come and show slides to all the German classes. I managed to stumble along with geometry but trig was impossible. The next day they were to get a permanent sub who could speak German.
January 11th we had asked if Nancy Van Duyn could come over after ballet. Jan Hooper asked if we could take Jenni because she wasn’t going to be home so we had five children until after 5 pm. Nancy stayed for dinner.
“Candy Fields called and told me the Douglas City School Board had had a meeting the night before–a woman had complained about a teacher’s aide there wearing a headband. Hippies wear headbands, therefore the aide was a hippy. Then discussion went on to Warm Mt. School. Wilma Smith had called Bob Gravette and he had called Sacramento and been told that it was illegal to go to one school three days a week and another two days a week. We doubt that this is so. I went out to tell Mike and Janet about it. “
7:30 phone call to sub for Mrs. Giovenetti. I rushed and barely made it by 8:30. I really didn’t want to work that day and was quite cross with the 1st class. Was able to leave at 2 though to go pick up children.
Florence and Leonard brought up the blackboard and had Kathleen with them. They were taking her to see Black Beauty and offered to take Rebecca and Jeff. They came by for them around 7. The movie wasn’t over until nearly 9:00. I was able to get Clarke to bed and get some housework done.
On the 18th, after the children were in bed, we had a good talk, going in depth on things until almost midnight. Very satisfying. The children were very happy to see that their father had returned the next day and climbed up on the bed to wrestle with him.
The next day Rebecca came down with some unknown thing that included a rash. Bob was going to fly to Garberville but the weather was too bad so they turned back at South Fork Mnt., drove over and stayed overnight. I varnished the hall again.
Bob called from near Willow Creek on his way back saying they were going to eat there and then called from Junction City saying he was going to meet Jim Barrett at the office and wouldn’t be be home till 10:30 or so. This was turning into a rough month for him.
Rebecca was home, sick, all week. Jeff went Wednesday and Friday to Warm Mt. School. Friday they went to the auction in Redding. Jeff apparently had a great time—said he even got to bounce on a waterbed at a furniture store on the way home. Didn’t get home till after 5.
I spray-painted the old desk Bob got from the high school—put about 10 coats of orange on the wood and a coat of gray on the metal. Put it in the kitchen next to the sink. I’d totally forgotten this desk.
Bob had to leave the next day around noon to drive to S.F. from where he would fly to Victorville and be gone all week.
That afternoon Rebecca commented,” Most Daddies are home on weekends and at night.”
Jeffery had said that morning,” I didn’t get a chance to talk to Daddy.”
Clarke follows him around when he gets the chance. His biggest treat is to ride on his father’s shoulders. Maybe after this week he can spend more time with them.
“I don’t even want to change our bed…it’s a little like he’s still here. We’ve had such a good week. I really miss him when he’s gone for so long. I worry abut him too because this isn’t really what he wants to be doing—and yet he works so hard at it and spends such long hours.”
Jeffrey has started to read and is sounding out words.
On the Saturday after Bob left I took the children to the library after going to Varney’s. When we go to Varney’s, Rebecca and Jeffrey always have a doughnut and colored lemonade—purple, pink or green. Then they read comics while I finish my coffee and Clarke chews on a doughnut. I found another Wallace Stegner book at the library.