A New Year – 1973

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Medium eggs were up to 80 cents a dozen.

After one series of stomach and other ailments on the part of children I wrote “”I think they could all have fallen out of bed simultaneously and I wouldn’t have heard!”

My dad was sounding really tired. My younger brother had given them a golden retriever puppy thinking he would enjoy taking it for walks but he was overwhelmed with it waking him up too early and other chores, plus having to take care of our mother. He said she had given him directions on cutting out material for a skirt and had sewn it up on the machine plus putting a zipper in—hard enough to do with two hands, let alone only one. So that was good news.

Rusty Kornvoldt came to help with housecleaning one day.

I found a stack of letters I’d written to my parents when I was working at Crater Lake. My mother had saved them for me. I read through them. Had forgotten a lot but also, by reading, remembered things I’d not written to them.

I didn’t write again until February 25th. Bob and I had to go to a phone company convention (Independent Phone Companies) in Monterey. We left on the 7th and I had to get a sub for nursery school for that day. Marne Wilkins talked to the night class on the 8th about creativity.

Our dog, Blacky, picked up a dead bat on the previous Friday and then licked Clarke’s face. I was worried about rabies, of course. Dr. Breeden said to put it in the freezer in a container. He called back later to say I needed to take the bat to the health department, which I did. We had to keep Blacky chained up. I wore rubber gloves when feeding her. Then we were waiting for word from a doctor in Berkeley. Dr. Breeden called and said the Berkeley doctor said not to worry about Clarke. He said the bat was too decomposed to get much of a test but that what they got was negative. Then the Health Department called and they wanted to dispose of the dog. They said that it could take up to six months to develop rabies if the bat had the rabies virus in its brain. “I was really upset. Still am not sure it was necessary. Apparently I didn’t have much choice.. So we left her there and signed release papers on the way out of town. Poor puppy.” We didn’t tell the children until they asked about her absence a week or so after we got back from Monterey. We told them she got sick and died at the pound.

Monterey was much different than I had pictured and very commercialized. Our motel was right by the freeway and the first night we couldn’t sleep. We got a different room the next night. I noted that it was a large motel right by a golf course and used for conventions.

Thursday I was invited to go shopping in Monterey with the other wives. “They sorted though racks and racks of clothes. I finally escaped to a bookstore where I bought $20 worth of books for the children. This was followed by a long lunch with numerous drinks and comments made that wouldn’t have been without alcohol. When I got back to the motel I moved our stuff into the other room. Bob was through with his meeting so we went out on the golf course where I could tell him about my weird day in private. “ That night we went to a cocktail party where I met a woman whose husband worked in Redding. She liked good music, etc. “After the cocktail party Bob and I went to a Japanese restaurant on the bay for dinner. That was fun. We sat on cushions at low tables, drank saki—had a leisurely dinner.”

Friday morning I took the car and went on the 17 Mile Drive and then to Carmel. The ocean was beautiful. Would like to have spent a full day there and a full day in Carmel. Saw seals, cormorants, etc. And looked at one tide pool—had a pink starfish in it. Spent only half an hour in Carmel. It was more like what I had pictured Monterey to be—hills, trees, lots of little crafts shops. Got back to the motel just before noon and packed the car. We ate lunch and left for home. Gave a man a ride as far as S.F.

The week after we got back I spent a lot of time calling people about joining the Shasta Community Concert Association as well as making and putting up three posters. Many didn’t renew that year and I got only four new ones. When I went to a board meeting in Redding others also reported a big decrease in sales. We were told we could keep selling so I wrote an article for the “Trinity Journal”. Thelma Riordan called and said they’d get tickets. I talked to the high school music teacher and he sounded interested.

Bob spent several days in bed with a sore throat and fatigue. I mentioned that when he was stressed out about something this seemed
to happen. Probably a good thing for him to do. And that I didn’t dare succumb to my fatigue or “or I’ll never get my energy back.” I think my long illness was still having lingering effects and I didn’t want to go there again.

There was an open house for Dorothy and Walter Miller’s 50th wedding anniversary that I went to. I liked them both a lot but rarely had a chance to talk to her when he was with her.

One day I took the nursery school class to visit the U.S.F.S. office. I took Jeffrey too. “They really had a good time. Cary Conway talked to them, showed slides, etc. Jim Fields helped hold the fire hose while each one squirted.”

I started taking guitar lessons one night a week in a class that Dick DeRosear was teaching. I borrowed Candy Fields’ guitar.

Bob started being gone during the week every week for probably a month (until a long-term project he was working on would be completed). The previous week he had left on a Tuesday and gotten back on Friday. That night we went to a Rotary Club potluck.

My brother Peter was going to bring their three children up to stay with Alice and Horace the following week for two weeks—in early March. They were moving to Sacramento. He was going to find a house while the kids were in Weaverville. Angenett wouldn’t come until the middle of June because she was taking a training course.

Helen, Herb, Eric and Marilee Woods came over for a visit. Marilee was expecting a baby any minute.

Rebecca made yeast bread from her “Zoom” book (which I got in Monterey) one afternoon. It was beautiful to look at—two loaves braided—and delicious. It took three separate kneadings and risings.

Bob hiked out to the ranch two weeks ago. Everything was in good shape. There were rocks in the road but no slides.

March 19th
I was watching a program on the relationship between the President and Congress.

Bob was gone again for the week.

Florence and Leonard got back from their vacation trip to Death Valley, Arizona, etc. She told me that Mildred Hurd was recovering from a mastectomy. “What a terrible experience for her. I hope she comes out of it all right. “ I was checking myself again more often. “Time Magazine had an encouraging article on cancer recovery.”

We stayed overnight at the ranch on Saturday. It was very cold and cloudy most of the time. Bob burned a big pile of brush and a lot of boards that had been lying around. I spent most of the time in the house Saturday but Sunday did take a walk with Jeff and Clarke. We climbed way up to the top of the ridge. Rebecca went with Bob to the creek and walked back by herself. We collected frog eggs, which soon began hatching in the house in Weaverville.

The weekend before that we had a beautiful day and cleared rocks from the road—had a picnic on the way in.

January 29, 1973

The children had one Friday off as the teachers were having a training session which I attended.

I took Jessica, Cedric and Nicholas Twight on separate days with me to nursery school. Jessica went to school with Rebecca on two different days. The afternoon of Nick’s birthday I had a party for him. Craig Lindsey came although he was really too old but I didn’t know anyone his age to invite and I knew he’d be fine. I had a treasure hunt for them so everyone got a prize. Alice took the children down to Sacramento to join Peter a few days later.

Opera to Flu Nov.-Dec. 1972

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Going to a concert in Redding in the 1970s wasn’t just a matter of driving a couple of miles down the street. It involved driving for at least an hour, in the dark, up over a pass and down the winding highway on the other side, often in the rain. And then home again. But being able to hear and see music programs live was really important to me. Our music exposure growing up in isolated state parks was from the radio or, as time went on, classical and folk music records. Never live.

Serving on the Shasta Community Concert Board entitled me to two (if memory serves me correctly) free tickets to each concert. Part of my responsibilities included trying to recruit new members from the Trinity area. There were meetings to attend in Redding although I don’t remember how often. When I was on the board we met at a large home up on a hill, just off of Highway 299 on the western outskirts of the town. I believe the homeowner, possible the chairman (?), was a plumber. I do remember being quite impressed by the size and beauty of the home. It was a good location for me because I didn’t have to drive all over town at night to find it. Concerts were held at the Civic Auditorium.

In October I took Jeffrey to see the Ober Kerchen Children’s Choir. It was a wonderful group but we left shortly after the intermission because we were both so tired to start with. Still, I always felt when taking a child with me that it was worth the trip just for the exposure. Plus it made it special to have one-on-one time together.

I went to a Community Concert committee meeting at a restaurant in Redding one rainy night and wrote that I should have gone to another one but we had a phone company dinner in Weaverville that night.

On November 13th Bob and I were in Philipsville at the River View Inn for dinner. We sat next to a couple who had recently moved to Mad River. She had written a little book on the history of the area in Southern California from which they had just moved and wanted to send me a copy. She also had driven a school bus. The next morning we ate breakfast at Tarentinoe’s then visited the phone company business and main offices in Garberville. Drove from there to Eureka, stopping at the Founder’s Tree so the Whitakers (phone company people) could see the redwoods. Ate a seafood lunch at Lazio’s in Eureka, stopped briefly at Willow Creek and got to Weaverville about 5:30. Picked up the children at Linda’s where Florence had taken them because we were supposed to have gotten home earlier that day.

I fed the children and then we got Christi Forero to babysit because we had something we had to go to at the Gables. Got home around 12:00. Bob had to get up at 5:00 a.m. to catch a plane from Redding to L.A. It was going to be three hours late so they ended up going down in Mr. McGuire’s plane, which came clear up to Redding for them.

That evening I decided, at the last minute, to go ahead and go see the M… (can’t read my writing) dancers in Redding and take Rebecca. I couldn’t get a sitter. Dorothy Goodyear said she’d take Jeffrey and Clarke, so I took her up on it. Raining hard all the way to Redding. It was an excellent program. African dances, songs and gymnastics. Lots of drums. We went home right afterwards but didn’t arrive until nearly midnight. I hauled the children home and got to bed around 1:00.

We had Thanksgiving dinner at Florence and Leonard’s. Aunt Nell, Uncle Stanford, Nancy and David Adrian—with Robin, Noel and Kent- were there. Aunt Nell seemed depressed but Uncle Stanford was quite “chipper”. That Saturday I took the children to Junction City to the Fancy Fair. They each bought something in the way of a toy. I bought a raffle ticket for $1 and Sunday night got a phone call saying I’d won $25 worth of meat!

Children started getting sick but I was hoping they’d be well in time for us to go to the Bay Area to the opera. Funny now that I’m not that fond of opera but it seemed to appeal then. I think part of it was the atmosphere of the Opera House and the costumes and sets. We drove to Berkeley the week before the 1st of December. Went to a book store on Durant St. (the college bookstore was closed.) Bought two secret panel Japanese boxes, one for Rebecca and one for Jeffrey, and a hand puppet made in Poland for Clarke. We found them at a Pier 1 (first time I’d seen a Pier 1). We stayed in the Campus Motel. “Berkeley is really getting kind of dirty compared to what it used to be. Lots of litter and the Pancake House restaurant where we often have eaten has grimy curtains, etc.”

“We got to the opera about 15 minutes before curtain time and chatted with Candy and Jim Fields. They went down with us last year but they took Carin and were visiting relatives this year. The opera (Tosca) was good. Everyone died magnificently. Bob and I went to Blums in Berkeley for a snack on the way home. Tried to see BART but it closes at 11. There’s a lot in the news on its lack of safety devices.”

We went home Sunday and picked up the kids from Linda’s. It was a good trip “good to be able to concentrate on each other.” Bob took
that week off and spent most of it studying about computers, which he was getting interested in. “The children really enjoyed being able to pop in on him in his shop.” Thursday he went to Palo Alto to get more computer information, go to bookstores and visit friends. He got back around 2:00 a.m. on Sunday.

Thursday night I had a nursery school meeting and picked up Christi to babysit but Bev had to come and get her afterwards. Friday I wanted to go downtown to mail some letters, late afternoon, but I’d left the lights on in the car and the battery was dead so we walked. It was terribly cold. I hadn’t realized that when we started. After we went to the post office I took the children to Varney’s for hot chocolate and to warm up. I hadn’t brought my purse so had to charge it. We headed home and were near Jeannie and Fred Meyers’, just past the Joss House, when Vernon Ryan and Ruth stopped to ask if we wanted a ride home. I said yes so he took Ruth home and we met him at their driveway. It was really helpful because we were all cold.

Bob worked on the translator for a while and “I guess it was really upsetting to people who wanted to watch the Army-Navy game.”

We had about 14 inches soft dry powder snow on the ground on the 8th of December. Still very cold. I had to cancel nursery school night and day classes. I put chains on the car. The children slid on the disk on the garden slope some. I was trying to finish up my Christmas shopping.

The day before my birthday I wrote, “Tomorrow I will be 34. I can remember when I thought being thirty was terribly old. Was amazed that people that age could ride bikes.”

Marcene Parkan took the children on a Saturday so we could attend the wilderness meetings. 207 people talked and perhaps as many more signed up to do it but had to leave early. Roads were icy and we had to use a jumper cable to start the car when we left Weaverville. Vernon Ryan, Gil and Lucile Snyder, Alice and Horace Jones, Florence and Leonard, Fred Esselink, Al, Marne and Muff Wilkins, were there. Bill O’Neil gave the Supervisor’s statement, Jim Winegardner the high school students’, etc. Leonard, Alice, Vernon, Bob, Fred and I spoke.

Sunday both Rebecca and Jeffrey were sick. Florence and Leonard brought us a little puppy, one of Freckles’ children. She was black and very cute and the children named her Blackie. But she was a nuisance—howled at night and messed all over the floor.

We had temperatures down to 10 degrees and were happy when it warmed up to 30. Many people had frozen pipes. Pipes were frozen at the recreation building so we couldn’t have nursery school. We did have the adult class where I handed out lists of books for adults and we talked about nursery school some and then came home.

Bob called and said he had just been to a movie called “Ryan’s Daughter”, which he liked very much. He told me to open my present from him. Vance Packard’s “A Nation of Strangers”.

It was a month later before I wrote again. I came down with the English flu on the 22nd of December. Florence ended up taking the children one afternoon and then the puppy, which had diarrhea. Things went downhill from there. I barely made it through Christmas and the children were sick too. Bob got it.

We went to see the doctor and were on medication but after New Years I ended up in the hospital with viral pneumonia. I also had tonsillitis and we all had a strep throat that was resistant to the medication we were on. My roommate at the hospital smoked and I passed a note to a nurse to give to Dr. Breeden. A little while later staff came in and wheeled her out, bed and all. Florence and Leonard took the children. Sometimes I could see the older two get off the bus at their house through my window—they lived close to the hospital. “I don’t know what we would have done without their help with the children.” That was followed by a long convalescence with the older two allowed home on weekends when Bob could be there, then full time and finally Clarke. We had to get someone to come in and clean a couple of times. Florence and Leonard brought Clarke up for a brief visit.

Bob began working on long-term planning for the phone company and was more relaxed doing that as well as having the wilderness hearing behind him. The long-term planning was to last three months and Frank Hinson was doing his former job.

Candy stopped by and went to the post office for me while Bob was in Victorville again for a few days. She brought me a book. I’d just finished reading “Ra.”

On the 17th of January I was still wheezing and a bit wobbly. “I think Rebecca and Jeffrey are ready to come home but I think Clarke would just as soon be with grandmother.” On the 25th the children could come home.

Lyndon Johnson died on the 22nd.

The first weekend the children were home Bob took Jeffrey and Clarke with him to Redding on Saturday. Leonard took Rebecca with him to the store and “where she spent the morning ecstatically counting money.” Thirty dollars in dimes, etc. She spent the afternoon with Florence. The children ate dinner there and then came home.

Sunday Bob really concentrated on the children. He and Jeffrey built a log cabin from Lincoln Logs. Then he helped Jeff build a waterwheel from a science kit and Rebecca worked on putting together a plane that was supposed to fly but didn’t. He helped her with it also and Clarke spent most of his time running back and forth between them and me. They were really glad to be home. Saturday night Jeffrey snuggled down under the covers and said, “My own bed.” He also said, “Mommy when you were in the hospital and I was at grandma’s I really wished you could get out of the hospital.” That was the first time he had ever talked about it. I later learned from Mary Jo, the kindergarten teacher, that Jeff had been almost autistic while I was in the hospital- wouldn’t talk or respond to anyone. Apparently they were with us just for that weekend because Sunday night they went back to Florence and Leonard’s and Monday they went to Linda Lindsey’s so Florence could paint her laundry room and they brought them up to say goodnight to us.

Bob invested some money in a company that made chips that go in computers and one other company. “He said he wouldn’t be too surprised to see this area without electricity in ten years. I read in the February issue of Saturday Review about a 100-year-old man who just the last year invented an apparatus of lenses for focusing the sun’s rays into ” a black-box radiator wherein enough heat is produced, up to an estimated 3,000 degrees Kelvin, to run a turbine, which in turn will produce low-cost electricity with pollution zero. His name is Dr. Abbot-the description (the result of a 90 minute interview (which ended with him singing a sea chantey) is excellent. He’s a truly amazing person.”

We had some good things come out of that month though. “Introspection and discussion between Bob and myself about him, his job, the children, etc. Sort of a re-evaluation. He’s giving Jeffrey a lot more attention now and getting good results.”

Rockwork, Nursery School, Fall in Bear Basin 1972

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This must have been Labor Day weekend because we went out to the ranch on Thursday. Maybe it was a short school week? After lunch I tried to mow the lawn but had a few problems with Clarke. He opened the front door and stuck his head out, after having been put in his crib. I put him down on our bed but that didn’t work either. Put him back in his crib and he climbed out again. So I mowed the lawn any way but he spent a lot of time bugging his brother and sister. Then I cleaned the pool.

On Friday did two batches of laundry, worked with Jeffrey in his Sesame Street Book for half an hour, played a game of multiplication cards with Rebecca. She and Clarke both had colds. I thought Jeffrey and I were coming down with it too. After lunch we went down to the blackberry patch across the road where I spray painted two garden-spider webs, after chasing the spiders out. Then touched the webs to construction paper, loosened the attached lines and the web designs were now on paper.

Started the rockwork again. I had to do a little more digging and mixed three batches of cement. It was slow work and hard on the back but “I kind of enjoyed it. No stretch looks the same as the one before and construction is fairly permanent, versus ironing and dishwashing, and it looks good once it is done. Also it is very obvious that you’ve done it.” It wasn’t until a year or so later that I learned I hadn’t been doing it quite the way it is supposed to be done; that each rock should fit snugly into the spaces, not just be put in with cement to hold it. Fed the children early. Bob didn’t get home until 8:00.

On Saturday I put new tarpaper on the roof of the outhouse. Hauled the roll of paper up a stepladder, etc. Then it wouldn’t leak when it was raining or the sprinkler was on. Picked a sack of green apples and picked some tomatoes and green beans in the garden. Jeffrey picked his one little cucumber, which he had with lunch.

After lunch Bob mixed up a large batch of cement for me and I worked from about two until five. Too much of a stretch but I got a lot done. About an hour later we had a huge thunderstorm with a bit of rain. Poor Clarke wanted to be out on the porch with the others but every time there was thunder he would come in.

Just before we left the rain stopped. “The clouds were slightly broken. They took on a peach color and then were brightened by rainbows—a large almost horizontal one; above it a fainter one, and finally a very faint one. Very dramatic. As I was getting into the car we had a regular cloudburst—lightning, thunder and rain all the way into Weaverville. Bob spotted a smoke on Eagle Rock Ridge, around the head of Mule Creek. He called the USFS and they already had someone on it. “

Monday, when we were back in town, Doris called—we’d been seeing bombers go over. She said there was a fire about five miles north of the ranch.

Tuesday night was the first adult nursery school group meeting. Only eight or nine people showed up and things really dragged. They got the officers elected though. Thursday was the first nursery school class and rather exhausting and unorganized because I wasn’t organized. We had 13 children. Afterwards I bought a few groceries, went home and ate lunch, then picked Rebecca up at school, went to the pool with her for half an hour, picked up Clarke from Linda Lindsey’s and went home to be there when Jeffrey arrived.

I’d been asked to substitute at Lewiston on Friday but asked whether they could find someone else and they did. Nancy Van Duyn came over to play with Rebecca after school.

Bob had a sore throat on Saturday and spent most of the morning sleeping. We were out at the ranch. He worked on the septic tank all afternoon. I mowed the lawn and picked apples. Made two pies. Sunday a fire in the stove at breakfast was a necessity-really chilly. I hadn’t planned on doing much but started painting the floor and got about half of it done before lunch. Those floors were old, wide boards with cracks between them and needed paint at least once a year to withstand the wear and tear of use. Also, the quick-drying paint would fill the cracks and keep dirt from accumulating in them. Bob wanted help after lunch. He’d finished the concrete blocks Saturday and that afternoon was doing the sealing job. This necessitated sifting the sand through a screen. Rebecca, Jeffrey and even Clarke (briefly) helped for a while, rubbing sand through a screen door into the wheelbarrow. I wouldn’t have started the floor if I’d known he was going to want help or how time consuming it would be. I screened sand, mixed cement, then refilled Bob’s pans whenever necessary. I’d paint for a few minutes, hear him yell for more stuff, run up and haul it, run back down, etc. He got one tank section finished (the smaller) and I got most of the floor done but still had a little more to do.

Nursery School: I tried to leave the house around 9:00, taking the kids to Linda’s and would get to nursery school by 9:30. I was usually not out of there until nearly one and then usually had errands downtown so would often eat downtown, not getting home until almost 2:00.

The first evening class Kenneth Wahl, came up from Shasta Junior College and spoke on parent effectiveness training, which he taught as a night class there. He was the school psychologist for Shasta Union High School District. We had an open meeting and about 10-15 extra people came. I planned to have an article in the newspaper asking for names of those who would like to have him teach a class the next semester in Weaverville. The second class I talked about children and books—typed up lists of the Caldecott and Newberry Award books, etc. I went into the background of children’s literature and talked about how to interest children in reading. So those would have been the September and October meetings.

Sometime in September I left the children with Florence and hiked into Bear Basin and back. Left the trailhead at 11 a.m. and was in there by 2:00. “ It was really pretty with the azalea leaves bright orange, reds and yellows. No one else on the trail. I took Freckles (Florence and Leonard’s dog). Big meadows, lots of pitcher plants; back at the trailhead by 5:30.
Aspens bright yellow in the upper meadow. “

The next day I went to Yreka with Alice, Horace and Leonard to a wilderness workshop. We learned about some new such as Seiad and the Russian Peaks areas.

The week before that we “went to a meeting of the Board of Supervisors in Weaverville at the courthouse. Over 100 people crowded into the room, many sitting on the floor. A fascinating evening; many spontaneous comments. Paul Richens and Fred Esselink showed slides, just enough. John Keane was there but not saying anything until he was forced to do so when Dave Ohde asked who did ask for the meeting. The Forest Service was under quite a bit of fire. The Supervisors passed a request for as large a wilderness area as possible, with land exchanges from S.P. requested within the county. “

In mid-September Rebecca fell from the monkey bars at school and broke her collarbone. I was visiting the dentist’s office with nursery school kids when Linda Lindsey brought her to me. The school thought she was just hysterical I guess when she kept weeping. I suspected what the problem was when I went to lift her onto my lap and she screamed. Got Dr. Polka to arrange for x-rays. He put a cloth harness on her for three weeks, and then she was ok.

East Weaver Lake-August 1972

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One morning I peeled and cut up apples for applesauce, then took the children down to the creek for an hour. They made boats and rafts out of driftwood and really had a good time. After lunch, after Clarke went down for his nap, I canned four quarts of applesauce. Mowed the lawn and used the pool. Clarke didn’t sleep so Rebecca got him up when I was on the last 1/3 of the lawn and fed everyone popsicles on the fenced-in porch. Then I made more applesauce, which we had with dinner and finished with breakfast the next day.

August 28th was the first day of school for Rebecca and Jeffrey. Rebecca could hardly eat breakfast. I drove her to school where Mrs. Crane would be her second-grade teacher. Jeffrey wanted to ride the bus so Clarke and I watched with him until the bus came. I followed the bus over to school where Mary Jo took them under her wing.

Took Clarke to Linda Lindsey’s. Ran an errand or two and went over to the pool for half an hour—with no children! We had spent the weekend out at the ranch. Bob worked on the septic tank both days and Saturday I chopped the wood he had brought out in the truck. Sunday I hauled rocks up from the creek from the rockslide. The heat really made me feel sick. I sat in the creek before going back to the house. Saturday I saw a pileated woodpecker. It flew in and landed in an apple tree then flew from there to a large ponderosa pine at the lower end of the meadow where it called.

I got the nursery school job. Had a meeting Friday with their board. I would be teaching two mornings a week and having one night class a month for parents. This is a parent-cooperative so
parents would participate in working with the children. Those who were working outside the home and not able to participate paid extra.

The first day of elementary school was on a Monday. “Tuesday I picked up Jeffrey and Rebecca at the school, dropped off Clarke at Linda Lindsey’s, picked up packs from the house, got a fire permit from the USFS and gas for the car. Then we drove up Weaver Bally. We left the road around 4:30 and were at East Weaver Lake by about six. Rebecca and Jeffrey complained for the first 100 yards and then seemed to get in gear and we did well up to the top of the ridge. (reading this now I still can’t believe I took these two out of school and then plunged over a cliff with them. I’d forgotten where the trail went from the ridge top and took them straight down. Bob and I did that once but we weren’t little kids. Now I think things like what if I’d broken a leg or hit my head or…… I do remember that all summer we’d been going to go on a backpack trip and hadn’t. Bob was out of town again so off we went. )

We found wild mint along the trail even though it was very dry and saw two giant ant nests made from twigs and fir needles.

“Fortunately we had consumed a small bag of peanuts and water at the spring by the road before we started. Rebecca was using my old Himalayan pack, carrying her sleeping bag and the tent. Jeffrey carried his sleeping bag in a little nylon bag. Going down the other side of the ridge was rather traumatic. I think we got on someone’s shortcut because the trail went straight down the hill with very minor zig-zags and lots of loose rock. The kids had to slide on their bottoms a good part of the way. Jeffrey dropped my hat and it rolled down the hill. The camera strap broke and the camera went bouncing down the hill.”

“After we got to camp I gathered wood and got a fire started and water heating. We had a bean and ham dinner with marshmallows later. Rebecca was upset because she wanted to help and was busily stirring a no-bake brownie mix. It dumped out and I was upset but then told her the animals would like it. I hope I made her feel OK. I told her this morning that I thought the recipe called for too little water, which made it hard to stir (which I think was the case) and that I probably would have dumped it too.”

“I put up the tent and Rebecca blew up her own air mattress. The a little later I lost the cap off mine so she gave me hers (all the air leaked out of hers during the night). They slept in the tent”.

“We were invaded by deer as soon as it got dusk. I spent most of the night shooing them out of camp. Would hear teeth chewing, turn on the flashlight and find a deer five feet away. Sometimes they would spook and run and I was concerned about one running into the tent or stepping on me—I could feel vibrations from their feet on the ground when they were close. After the moon came up they finally left. I looked at my watch at 2:15 and next at 5:30 so I guess I slept during that time at least.”

“Rebecca woke around 7:00 and Jeffrey about half an hour later. Gave the children warm iced tea and then applesauce, warm, and hot cereal. After dishes were cleaned up I went for a swim –cold but stimulating. Rebecca and Jeffrey played they were fishing. Had sticks with fishing line, left in the camp, and tied rocks to them for fish.”

“East Weaver Lake is quite small, maybe 200 feet by 75 feet. There was no water running in but probably underground seepage. Lots of waterdogs, and small fish. The fish weren’t visible from shore last night but this morning were jumping for insects (and even a dragonfly that was laying eggs) in the shallows. They did some exploring too while I broke camp. We left about quarter to 12 after eating a chocolate bar and drinking some water. “

“I took them out the same way we came in since I didn’t know where the trail was. I went up the hill with Rebecca first. We had quite a struggle at the steep place. I left them perched along the “trail” and tried another route but it was bad too. I had a struggle myself with it. Left my pack up on a flat and went back down to help them up. Once we reached the top of the ridge and headed down they realized how tired they were. Rebecca’s toes were sore from her new tennis shoes. (I’d had to buy them yesterday, just before we left because her oxfords were too tight). Jeffrey was stumbling and we were all hungry. We drove down to the spring and ate lunch there – salami sandwiches, apples and iced tea. Got back to Weaverville about 2:45.”

“I called Linda and Clarke was still napping so I cleaned up, Rebecca cleaned up and Linda called when I was about to get Jeffrey tubbed so I went ahead and did that. Also had time to get most of the cleanup done.”

“Bob called that evening and I gave him a brief rundown of the trip. It was really a good trip but we’re all tired. I weighed my pack when we got home. It was 35 pounds. My thighs are quite sore. “

Fires and More

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On August 12th there were two fires burning in our general area, one on the ridge behind the USFS and one near Del Loma. Smoke filled the whole river valley and some around our house. Both were still out of control the previous night. The one near the ranger station, Denny Creek, was about 20 acres and the Del Loma one about 200 acres. Dave Ohde stopped me downtown yesterday to tell me about them. We gulped our dinners and then Bob had to see about getting phone service into the Hayden Flat area and I did dishes and packed the car in preparation for going out to the ranch. Florence offered to take the children and I took her up on that. I stopped at the ranger station at Big Bar to inquire about things. Irene Nunn told me it had nearly gotten their house. I went on up to the ranch, unpacked the car and got sprinklers going. I fixed a pot of coffee, had a piece of cake and took trips upstairs to look at the smoke. Bob arrived around 10:00 pm with a phone company installer who then went on to Weaverville in our VW. Bob had left his company car at Hayden Flat so the USFS could use the phone. We kept the phone company repair vehicle so we could have some way of communicating. We planned to look at the fire, then exchange cars in Weaverville and bring the children out.

The next day we went down in the phone company rig to the fire camp. While still on our road the fellow who brought Bob out Friday night called on the radio and wanted us to meet him near Del Loma so he could get his gear. There must have been 40-50 Forest Service vehicles parked at the fire camp on the flat this side of Del Loma Lodge. We talked to Russ Engle and Bob Spivey who said they’d made good use of Bob’s phone, placing about 50 calls that night. They had a kitchen area set up and a tent for women who were timekeepers. We stopped at Big Bar to call Florence from the pay phone; the others were out…they lost 12 or 13 telephone poles. Talked to a man who was camped at Hayden Flat when the fire came over the hill there. He said “you never saw a camp empty so fast!”

We went into Weaverville, got the children from Florence’s and went up to the house to eat lunch. Then Bob took Rebecca and Jeffrey out to the ranch with him so he could go on to Del Loma first and show them the fire camp. They got to watch a helicopter scooping water up from the mouth of Big French Creek. Clarke and I went on up to the ranch. I cleared out the settling tank and scooped some stuff out of the dam then brought Clarke down to the house to put him down for a nap. Bombers (4 engines) started going over around 4 pm, about the time that Bob and the older two showed up. They continued in a steady stream until sunset. Florence called to find out what was happening because they were going over Weaverville too.

Rebecca and Jeffrey wanted to use the pool but there was a dead bat in it so I scooped it out with a plastic container. Since bats can carry rabies in their saliva we decided to drain the pool and clean it.

The generator wouldn’t start that night and Bob was down looking at the fire so I read to the children at bedtime by candlelight. I left a candle burning on the table for Bob and went to bed as I wasn’t feeling well (had stomach problems off and on for the next few days). Bob said the fire was burning on the west side of Big French Creek but pretty well under control—they’d lost it to the east of Petreau Creek though.

The canyon was so full of smoke the next day that we couldn’t see Eagle Rock lookout. By noon it had pretty well cleared out though. We kept in touch with Doris on Eagle Rock. Bombers were going over again. There was a very bad fire at Old Shasta too. With three fires along one highway on the same day there is speculation that they may have been set.Now it was Monday, the fire started Friday, and Bob went to get his car Sunday night but they needed it for another day so he left it there. The fire was pretty well stopped, at least on this side.

Bob was planning to join our two springs together so we’d have more water at the house.

I still wasn’t feeling well but managed to get Jeffrey’s party invitations cut out. Had a terrible headache.

Candy called and after we’d talked for a little while a man’s voice cut in on our party line and told us he’d been listening to us gossip for half an hour. If he’d just said, “excuse me ladies but I’m at the fire camp and I need the phone,” we’d have hung up but he was really rude. The only good comeback I had for him was to say that he had another phone, a mobile unit, available and why didn’t he use it? I was pretty sure he wondered how I knew that.

I’d just finished reading a book called “John Gaff’s Mill” about a couple who renovated an old sawmill in New Hampshire. Made me think a little of us except they were doing it for a living and year ‘round. “There’s an air of the fall to come today–just since this weekend. The last two nights the children have worn pajamas and we’ve had just the one window upstairs open.”

The deer got into the garden again.
Clarke now calls Rebecca “Ruh-begea” and Jeffrey “Deffwey”.

Candy, Jim and Carin came out on the 20th, a Sunday. Jim helped Bob with the septic tank. Florence and Leonard packed Nancy and David Adrian in to Bear Basin that Saturday.
One weekend we had a really good rain.

I noted that it was really hard to get the children to bed before 9 pm. Bob would get home from work about the time I was ready to head the children that direction so he and I would eat and then get the children to bed. When Clarke heard his dad starting the car to leave for work one morning he stood up in his crib and said, “Bye-bye Daddy. Beep-beep”.

One morning I went out on the porch to check on Clarke and found him playing with a bucket of pipe fittings. Unfortunately mice had stored mouse poison down the bottom of the bucket. I didn’t see any evidence of it around his mouth or on his hands but called Dr. Breeden to see what he suggested. I didn’t have anything on hand to make him vomit so he suggested a finger down his throat. I tried about 15 times but all I got was bitten so I decided to wait it out and watch for any blood in urine.
He had said it would take quite a bit to affect him.

Steller’s Jays were hopping around in the field catching grasshoppers. The doe with the single fawn kept trying to drive away the little spike buck, last year’s fawn I think, striking at him with her hooves. The doe with the twins didn’t mind him hanging out with them. Maybe he babysat.

At some point Jeffrey had his 5th birthday party. Guests included Josh White, Ronald Lindsey, Anne Marie Meyer , John Van Duyn. Not sure what the theme was but the props included a boat and a starfish cake. Jeff, maybe you remember.

July & August at the Ranch

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On a Wednesday I went into town to pick up my niece Dana and stay over one night there before going out to the ranch. I visited with Peter and Angenett at Joneses. Hardly recognized Dana. She had grown a lot and was wearing contact lenses instead of glasses. She brought her clothing, etc. in a bright red backpack. Peter and Angenett and children came over for lunch. After dinner Peter came and helped Bob haul two loads of concrete blocks.

Thursday P & A and family went out to the Joneses place at Coffee Creek. Peter went to Redding that Sunday to get a rental car and drive to Arcata to meet Ed Stone, with whom he was going to travel down the coast.

Someone called and told us that Candy and Jim were out of water at their place. They had gone to Idaho to check out a potential new job so Bob was going out early in the morning to see whether he could do anything about it. I didn’t write much while Dana was there but she seemed to enjoy her visit and we enjoyed having her. One day she helped Bob put some concrete blocks in the septic tank and we took a walk up to the top of the meadow.

That week also included major stomach ailments that are better left un-described.
By Sunday everyone seemed fine. We were going into town and the battery was dead on the VW. We figured one of the children left the radio on. So Dana and I pushed and Bob got a run down the hill with it and got it started. We left Weaverville around 7 p.m. and took Dana up to Weaver Bally to see Doris—took sandwiches and apples. Doris had fixed a pot of soup. It was chilly up there and we were all dressed for warmer weather. I’d forgotten how high up the lookout was. There was a nearly full moon and we watched the sun set. The children pretended the mountain was a dragon and we were driving over its ribs.

We left there a little after 9:00. Got home and put the children to bed. Dana got a short nap and Bob went to bed. She and I left for Redding to catch the train. Got there half an hour before the train was to leave. I drank most of a thermos of coffee and she had a coke. Eight people boarded the train at 1:10 a.m. Dana was really looking forward to the trip and especially to ordering her own breakfast. She hoped they’d have grapefruit. I got home about 2:30 a.m.

On Tuesday I finished reading The Hobbit to Rebecca and Jeff. Clarke was napping and I went upstairs to try to take a short nap. Jeff came upstairs and then I heard Rebecca yelling for Jeff. She came upstairs and I proceeded to scold her for waking Clarke. She sat down on our bed and carefully told me how she’d gone up to the outhouse and when running down had heard something about two feet off the trail rattle at her and that there was a rattlesnake out on the lawn. She went on to say that she’d been yelling for Jeffrey because she thought he was still outside and might get bitten. I jumped up, ran downstairs and sure enough there it was. I ran up to the sand pile, got a shovel and killed it—it was rather a struggle to keep it from going under the house. Needless to say I apologized to my daughter and praised her watching out for her brother.

We went into town on Friday. Got some vegetables from Florence and Leonard’s. They were in Colorado. Mildred Gibson was housecleaning. Florence always left one row of green beans to serve as seed for the next year. The bean seeds had been in the family for a long time. I remember suddenly realizing I was picking in the seed crop row. Stopped.

Saturday, the 29th was the raft race in Lewiston, 300 entries!

I had forgotten to mention the previous Tuesday that we met a boy backpacker down by the creek. I figured that on that hot day he had probably just gotten out of the water. He’d been looking for a trail to the ranch and was using a 1957 map. He thought he might try taking a shortcut over to Big French Creek.

Bob continued working on the septic tank and I washed lots of diapers and Jeffrey’s sleeping bag, “which needed it desperately”. After the laundry was done and hung, I had to go to Big Bar to get eggs, having left the ones I bought at the house in Weaverville.

After lunch and reading the Sunday paper I finally started digging along the porch edge so we could start on the foundations. It was hard work. Took me two hours to do about three feet, using a pick, shovel and hoe. The grass sod was hard to remove. Rebecca and Jeffrey voluntarily did enough shoveling to fill the wheelbarrow once and hauled some rocks. Bob really got hot and tired working in that hole. We were thankful for our little above ground pool. Everyone but Clarke and me (upstairs) heard a coyote around 5 o’clock.

“The deer got into my garden the night before and ate off the tops of most of the strawberry plants, which had been doing beautifully. Many were setting up berries. They also chewed on the green beans. It’s so terribly discouraging to put so much work (as I did at least the first month) into a garden and have the deer, etc. eat it. It would be more understandable if there were nothing else to eat here but the grass they eat constantly and apples in the orchard.”

When I went to hook up the hose by the garden to the tree sprinkler one day I startled the twin fawns. Apparently the doe had tucked them away there in the cool tall grass. “For a moment we stared at each other and then they took off. One ran about ten feet from me over past the little pear tree. The other went under the English walnut. The mother came along then and the two soon joined her. One bleated a few times but finally rejoined the group. The doe’s ribs show, probably from caring for the twins, while the mother of the single fawn is quite fat. I think she is also the mother of the little spike. Clarke likes to chase the deer. Last evening he chased, at a rapid toddle, the little buck, who eventually felt I was safer to be around and came to stand about 20 feet from me. “

I worked on the dirt digging again and we had about 10 feet by six feet done. I needed to get a level and smooth out the bumps. The children were playing with little pottery animals (from the Red Rose tea boxes), bulldozers, etc. in that dirt.

The next evening I was cleaning the pool and slapping mosquitoes when Bob got home. I asked Rebecca to ask him whether he could read to Clarke while I finished up. Clarke got so excited when he knew Bob was coming home. “Daddy—Big truck—Beep-Beep. “ I put Clarke to bed with his snuggy, a bottle and a nursery rhyme book with the page opened to a cow. Then we ate and Bob read a book with poems to Jeffrey ending with one about “ If I were a one-legged pirate” which sent Jeffrey off with a very pleased smile. His father had dramatized it for him.

Bob took the convertor off the generator so we were running on car gas again for a while. The convertor was leaking into the oil at a tremendous rate so we were using it a minimum amount of time.

I had just finished reading The Man Who Walked Through Time by Colin Fletcher. I wrote that I’d like to make a two -month trip like that but probably not in desert country.

One afternoon Jeffrey and Clarke played with milkweed and thistle seed down. “The breeze was just right and the down would go up 25 or 30 feet sometimes coming down to the ground where they could catch it again. I took some pictures of Jeffrey which I hope turned out, clothing-less, brown, reaching for these white puffs all against a shadow background and backlighted.”

We celebrated Clarke’s second birthday one day early because Bob was leaving for Garberville that day, a Monday, and wouldn’t be back until Wednesday night.
Rebecca mixed up the cake mix batter and Jeffrey helped me with the icing. He gave it a basic yellow color and then added separate colors of blue and green. Bob and I gave Clarke a Tupperware ball with shapes that fit inside; Rebecca and Jeffrey a canvas hat; and Florence and Leonard a little red bull with black felt ears and tail, white horns and a music box. The bull also rotated its head. I found it in the Sears catalog and suggested to Florence that it would make a good gift. So she ordered it. He took the hat and “daddy cow” to bed with him. He was really funny with the bull when he unwrapped it—stared—touched it gently here and there, almost as if he couldn’t believe it.

It was a very hot day and we were in an out of the pool a lot. Rebecca got the idea of sleeping out on the fenced- n porch so she and Jeffrey went out there around 9:00. Mosquitoes were bothering them even with repellent. I didn’t know how long they would last. Bob and I were slapping mosquitoes right and left that they must have let in on all their trips in and out with stuff. They slept out there all night with no problem. I worried about them off and on during the night, mostly about whether I would hear them if either one screeched if Tigger landed on them. After Bob had left and everyone was through with breakfast we went to Big Bar. Stopped at the River Store to get bleach, crackers, 7-up and coke and went over to Price Creek to pick blackberries. There were lots of berries. We picked for about two hours. The children ate them and I saved them. Rebecca and Jeffrey did very well, kept their tempers and took care of Clarke, etc. The road ws very busy, lots of traffic, rather surprising. I tried making jam with pectin but it came out syrup so I decided to make the next batch my usual way, just boiling. The two children slept outside again.

Bob had installed a phone extension upstairs and a very loud outside bell.

The previous Tuesday Bob brought the generator convertor out and hooked it up again. I fed him dinner and he left around 9:00 to go back into town. He had to be in Hayfork at 6:15 a.m. Wednesday to watch the mill start up. Wednesday evening he called to say he had work to do at the office. I made a last minute decision to go into town and we got there around 8:30. Thursday was busy with grocery buying, Varney’s , library, drug store, etc. Got a used tire from the tire shop for a swing. Ironed, cleaned the bathroom, left the children at Linda’s so I could pick vegetables and tried on some clothes at Van Matres. We left town later than I had planned. I had Rebecca and Clarke. I guess Jeff rode out with Bob.

It was around 8:30 when we got to the bridge. Just above the bridge, at the base of the steep, rocky, hill where the bears went up and down, we saw a family of ring-tailed cats, either two adults and two children or one adult and three young. They zipped over the edge of the road where an adult sat up to watch us. They were tiny, with tails as long as their bodies, strongly resembling weasels.

Friday Bob got up at 5:00 and was in town by 6:30. I didn’t hear him at all. I’d been so tired the night before I felt sick.

Bob went into Redding to get pipe for the septic tank and also brought back a few clothes he’d gotten for me at Dicker’s—some striped hip-hugger shorts, two backless tops and a sleeveless top. “So far I’ve worn everything he’s gotten me. I’d hate to have to pretend.”

The heat was difficult. Kids got cranky. I got cranky. The water warmed too much in the pool and it needed cleaning more often and was then too cold for awhile. Older children sat in the treehouse munching salt crackers while I mowed.

They slept out on the porch again. “Rebecca said they like to hear the overhead sprinklers so I turned them on. It is kind of nice—the water makes different sounds as it hits the metal porch roof, the tarpaper, the wooden shakes and the leaves of the black walnut. You can hear it coming closer by the sound patterns. Also there’s a steady drip from the roof as if it’s raining.”

I found a mouse skeleton and showed it to Rebecca and Jeffrey. Tossed the skeleton but kept the skull.

Bob called from Weaverville. He had to catch a plane from there to Garberville the next day but would be back the next night. Not sure whether he got out there that night from my writing. He had thought so when he called that morning but it sounds as if he got in late and stayed over. I took the children to Big Bar to get bread and sugar. I’d been making pie and jam with sugar combined with honey.

Rebecca decided to sleep upstairs that night but Jeffrey decided to sleep on the porch again by himself, sleeping on the couch where Rebecca had been. I put the air mattress alongside in case he fell off. “He’s very brave. I’m sure I wouldn’t have slept out by myself at his age.”

Heat of July 1972

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Tuesday, July 22nd: I didn’t do a laundry that morning so had some extra time. After breakfast I fixed some quick yeast rolls because we were out of bread, then went for a walk. The children and I got up as far at the bathtub settling tank, which they called Daddy’s Bathtub. I decided to stop and clean it out a bit. We had to rescue a lizard that got knocked in when I took the lid off. It was a big, fat thing and made me think of a picture in the Alice In Wonderland book where she cries up a flood and a lizard (I think) was struggling in it. We’d stopped at the place where the lower spring crossed the road so I could show them how we used to play cigarettes with the jointed horsetail stems (equisetum) when I was a child. Rebecca had been running around pretending to smoke Legos. My parents smoked but none of my brothers nor I did.

From there we went up into the woods to the flat where the gooseberries and raspberries grew. Fortunately there were some ripe raspberries—a treat for everyone even in small quantities. We went a little further to where the road forked up to the Upper Trailhead and then went home.

After lunch, when Clarke was down for his nap, I read some more from The Hobbit to Rebecca and Jeffrey. We started it the night before and then that night I read the 2nd chapter. I mowed the lawn, which took about an hour, while the two older children played in the pool. Woke up Clarke and enticed him into the water with boats to play with. He’d been complaining about it being cold.

My niece, Dana, was going to come and visit for a week. Peter and Angenett would bring her on their way down from Seattle. She was 13 and after a week would go home on the train.

Horace Jones called twice to discuss a protest letter concerning a timber sale west of Devil’s Backbone. That night I typed a letter for that.

“I really get nervous at night when Bob’s gone. Shouldn’t I suppose. I guess it’s that only a nut would come this far at night—not a reassuring idea.”

Clarke disappeared that morning only “we didn’t realize it until we heard a shriek and suddenly realized he was missing. I was weeding and the other two were playing on the porch. We found him at the gate to the barn area, hung up on a star thistle. Thank goodness for star
thistles! “

I didn’t sleep well that night. It was hot and Clarke was fussy. I took him up to the outhouse with me and talked about the stars and sky and the next day he kept running to the window, pointing up and saying “sky, sky”.

After breakfast, dishes, etc. and running some diapers through a cold rinse we headed for Big Bar. Down the road near the jeep road and the orange pelton wheel was a doe leaping up the bank with one fawn trying to follow her and the other still below. The one trying to go up the bank couldn’t make it and stopped, bleating. I stopped the car and we watched as the doe came back down onto the road. The nearest fawn nursed. Finally the other joined her and they went slowly up the jeep trail. We were all delighted at such a start to our ride. I thought the doe was the same one that was always in our yard. She was quite calm about everything.

In Big Bar I bought cat food, bread, and a few peaches and popsicles for the children as well as purchasing last Sunday’s paper. Mailed some letters at the post office.

Back at the house I finished the laundry, fixed lunch, put Clarke down and read from The Hobbit.

Called Bob who had just gotten to Florence and Leonard’s. His plane had been late. He was watching the Democratic Convention. “I didn’t even know it was being held.” The two older children talked to him and said goodnight. I’d gotten begged into reading two chapters of The Hobbit so bedtime was later than usual.

Jeffrey read two more pages from the little book of Get Off the Desk. “He’s really doing quite well. Sounds out words well and is picking up a small sight vocabulary.”

Eric and Marilee Woods, Steve and Ingrid arrived around noon on Saturday, wanting to hike to the Upper Ranch. It was very hot and I didn’t envy them that trek. Bob made two trips into town with the truck, first going in with his car. He brought back two loads of sand and then spent some time in the pool cooling off. I fixed cold tongue sandwiches and green salad for dinner and when the Woods came back fed them the same thing before they left. Jeffrey was really intrigued by Marilee’s Levis, which she had patched in many different designs.

Thursday we went into town and, after Rebecca’s piano lessons ate lunch at Varney’s and met Bob there, then went to the library. I washed all Bob’s shirts from his trip at Florence’s and then ironed them at our house.

Clarke had started having tantrums—that age. Flops down on the floor vertically and crying. So far no kicking and screaming.

Bob and I took the children to the pool from about 6:30 to 7:15, then went to Florence and Leonard’s for Aunt Nell’s 88th birthday. It was actually the 26th but she would be in Washington then and Florence and Leonard on vacation. Anna May, her daughter, was there as were Elsie and Vivian Tye; and Dick, Kay and Michael Morris. Rebecca was all dressed up and helped serve and seemed very dignified and old compared to all the boys.

We got a late start on Friday going to the ranch—too many errands first. It was kind of a miserable drive. Clarke cried a lot from fatigue and the heat; Rebecca and Jeff were pretty good thank goodness. Got everyone a popsicle in Junction City. Stopped at Prairie Creek to wet some dried wash cloths and Rebecca rubbed Clarke with this which helped. Got the groceries into the refrigerator and the children into the pool as fast as possible. Put Clarke down for his nap after he cooled off. Bob got home around 9:30.

Alice called to say that Peter and Angenett were delayed a couple of days so Dana would be later too. After dinner Bob was putting the rebar in the septic tank hole so he and Jim Fields could pour the next day. He was doing this in the dark with an extension cord out there and lots of mosquito repellent.

Saturday I was up early. Cleaned some spoiled food out of the refrigerator and tried cooking hamburger and pork chops at the same time to make sure they didn’t spoil. Pancakes and bacon for breakfast. Bob took the boys with him on several short trips as he readied things for the pour. Jim kept the cement mixer going and full and Bob was in the hole tamping. They worked till 3:30. Candy and I had a relatively easy time supervising children. Carin reminded us of Rebecca at that age. Lots of questions. Talked constantly in sentences and asked, “What are you doing?” Rebecca used to say, “Whatcha donin?” They left around six.

Bob and I went in the pool just before bedtime to cool down. It was so hot upstairs.

On Tuesday when I was watering the cement in the septic tank to keep it damp –did this every few hours—‘I realized I was also watering a rattlesnake. It had apparently fallen in. So Rebecca and Jeffrey got to see a live rattlesnake in action—and also a mommy. I took a shovel and went down the ladder into the hole. Stood on the ladder first. The snake saw me and coiled up slowly—it had a black tongue. Its body had the usual brownish markings with a tinge of green, very much like dry grass. But back by its tail it had black and white rings around the body, more like a king snake. It seemed sluggish, just a wispy dry rattle came from its tail. After the first whack near it with the shovel it crawled to the south end of the hole and tried to crawl out. That’s where I killed it. It must have just eaten or just changed its skin. That would account for the slowness. ‘

“Rebecca turned away after the first encounter and wouldn’t watch (understandable). It was really sort of creepy being down in a pit with a rattlesnake. I decided that I’d better watch Clarke more closely. He’d be likely to try to pick one up.” I’d been concerned that if I didn’t kill it one of them might be looking and fall in.

Beyond Yamsi–June-July 1972

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From Yamsi campground we drove to Chemult and on up Highway 97. We stopped and went a few feet into a lava tube cave—found a big chunk of ice in there formed during the winter from water dripping down. Temperature in the cave was 40 degrees. We ate lunch just outside of Sisters at a picnic area along a river where red- winged blackbirds came down for crumbs and we were cooled off by sprinklers on the way to and from the table.

We ate dinner in Salem and called my parents from there. Arrived in Nehalem around 8:00 p.m. My mother wept at our arrival. Her bed was in the bay window area of the dining room. I knew more or less what to expect but it was still difficult seeing her with the damage from the stroke. Her right leg was paralyzed and right arm kind of frozen across her chest. The worst part for her I think was inability to communicate although she apparently improved some just in the time we were there—new faces, new urge to speak. She could read a word or two out loud and was able to direct me to a box that had a list of words and songs I used when I was 2 years old. She wanted desperately to help and rinsed the lunch dishes one day when I washed them, and folded some clothes. I did most of the cooking while we were there and Bob and my dad most of the dishes. I managed to clean the refrigerator, go over the walls and floor of the upstairs bathroom with a wet sponge, polish a favorite silver pitcher before we left. I didn’t have as much time to do all I’d have liked to what with cooking, laundry, etc.

We went to the beach for an hour or so every afternoon after Clarke’s nap. Rebecca and Jeffrey had a good time at the beach; Jeffrey loved the waves. Clarke liked the water the first day but then decided the sand was more fun and more predictable. They enjoyed sliding down the sand dunes, Clarke saying “wheeee” all the way down. One morning I took the children up the road a little way where we talked to a neighbor and picked a few salmon berries. Bob worked on my dad’s stair-casing a little. My dad mowed the lawn, which was about a foot deep. It was a good visit under the circumstances and this time my mother wasn’t in the pain she’d been in before, which reduced the tension between them. Both got really frustrated with the communication though. On Monday, after I changed and remade the beds we left.

We returned the same way we’d gone, pausing in Tillamook to view the cheese-making process, where we bought yogurt for our lunch and cheese for Gilda and ourselves. We ate lunch at Castle Rock campground; a U.S.F.S. crew was mowing the tall grass. There was a large pump there for drawing drinking water, which the children enjoyed.

We were going to camp at one of the lakes in the La Pine area (Paulina, East and Little Crater Lakes) but they were quite crowded…lots of boaters. We ended up eating dinner at Little Crater Campground in the picnic area. The wind was blowing and we were chilly but some hot food helped. There was a pump there too. We then drove on over the top of a mountain, which still had snow patches extending into the road. Finally stopped at a place called China Hat—a U.S.F.S. guard station (empty) and campground (empty). We unloaded the car, blew up air mattresses and were in bed around 9:30. “I stayed awake a long time listening for children (who slept soundly), listening to the wind, watching the stars, and watching the pine trees move in the wind.”

After breakfast we drove back past the lakes, through miles of pine-covered, pumice-covered hills and stopped to look at an obsidian flow—ate some snow still on its surface. Apparently that whole area was one volcano and the two lakes lie in what was its interior. We drove past Klamath Lake and the children were pleased to have seen three trains in a row. We ate lunch at the Williamson River State Park.

And suddenly it was July 4th.

“I’m sitting in the old wicker rocker (which the children are methodically picking apart- at the ranch. It’s a little after 9 pm. Still light enough to see outside. Clarke is asleep. Rebecca and Jeffrey are supposed to be but aren’t. Bob went down to the creek in the VW and they left their blankets in it so are probably listening for his return. Also it’s very hot upstairs.”

The day after we got back from Nehalem I did six batches of laundry and Bob flew to Garberville. That was a Wednesday and he wouldn’t get back until Friday. Friday I went to a Tupperware party at McClurg’s and Jane Van Duyn and Linda Ohde watched the children. We stayed in town Saturday and Bob moved the washing machine, etc. out to the ranch Saturday night. Sunday we went out and he went out with Hal Miller to dig a septic tank hole and leach line. We arrived just as they were finishing lunch. While we were eating Bob brought over a fat rattlesnake, minus its head, which he’d cut off. It was about 2 ½ feet long. It had rattled at him from the brush pile in the orchard. I was pretty sure that all our extra watering was bringing them in because the watering made better habitat for mice and other creatures.

The week before Bob had put up the pool, hauling sand from near the river to put it on. Clarke loved the pool He floated easily with someone holding his arms or with one hand under his stomach

One day I mowed the grass in the orchard, wanting to get it low to discourage hidden rattlesnakes and ground squirrels. Ran it with not enough oil and it started smoking. We took it in for repairs. I mowed the grass around the house with a push mower and it took me three hours. Was so thankful for the pool to cool off in several times.

We went to the fireworks at Lowden Park. I’d seen fireworks only once before and the children never. We went too early and the kids got tired waiting but they were really nice. We were on the backside of the field opposite where the audience was supposed to be so were almost directly under some of them. Rebecca said she liked the ones that were furthest away best. Jeffrey seemed quietly impressed and Clarke was rather upset, jumping with each bang and shaking some.

On the morning of the 4th we watched the parade from the balcony at the phone company. Enjoyed seeing and hearing the community band that Dick DeRosear had organized. Clarke was impressed by all the “wheels”. He couldn’t say “truck”. And the “cows”—horses. We could see the Ryans and Hurds, Adrians and Florence and Leonard right across the street in front of Ryan’s store.

Our financial situation wasn’t looking very good.

On the 6th Bob got up at 4:30 and was going to let me sleep in but I got up and fixed some cantaloupe to go with his dry cereal. Was going to go back to bed but stayed up to have some time to myself and write in my journal and have a cup of coffee, expecting any minute to hear the thump thump of feet on the stairs.

“ The sun is just hitting the trees across from the house. “ The day before a U.S.F.S. truck came in carrying two Hondas in the back and drove up the hill. A couple of hours later they came back, one Honda still in the truck. They’d gotten up to the top of the hill and hadn’t been able to start that one. We went into town to stay overnight as Rebecca had piano lessons. I took the children to the pool. Rebecca was nearly back to where she’d been at the end of last summer and Jeffrey almost to where he’d been. Clarke was so buoyant I thought he could swim if given lessons.

“Really wish we could just stay away from town for the summer. It is so beautiful out here.”

I was reading “Mid-Century” by Dos Passos and really enjoying it. It was the first of his books I’d read and I noticed he had written others.

On the 8th we left the ranch around 9 and after a stop at the house went down to Varney’s for a snack. We hadn’t been there in a long time. Ran into Linda Lindsey who said it was Scot’s 2nd birthday. Later I left the children with Florence while I went for a doctor’s appointment. She took us down for a frosty. I visited with Aunt Nell a few minutes and wrote that I needed to do that more often. She was nearly 88. Went home and had crackers and cheese with the children and then took them to the pool lessons for pre-schoolers. Connie Martin was there so she gave Rebecca some too. Clarke was his usual relaxed self. They tossed ping pong balls in the pool for the little ones to reach and grab and Clarke was so tired he had one thumb in his mouth and was grabbing two balls with his other hand. Came home and called Bob to tell him dinner was ready (had put fish in the oven before we left). He worked at the office until after midnight.

The next day, after numerous errands, we went over to see Florence who gave us lettuce, peas and carrots. Back to the house to eat lunch and called Bob to tell him there was lunch there for him. Then we went out to the ranch and he went to Garberville. We used the pool and then I drained and cleaned it– filled it before turning the water off when I went to bed about 11:30.

Jeffrey when he’s mad, “Don’t talk to me!”
Clarke looks at the Jeep and says “Daddy, Bye-bye, Un Un, Beep Beep.”

I was trying to write some stories and sending them off to various magazines.

Bob brought Tigger (cat) out and the ground squirrels really complained. Bob had stayed up until 3 a.m. working in Garberville the night before and looked really

Sunday evening, he drove into Weaverville so he could leave Monday at 6 a.m. to fly to Victorville. He spent most of Sunday working on the septic tank, getting it ready to pour the slab.

Clarke managed to pull the small log (which Bob had his pipe vise attached to) on the porch off onto himself. He was lucky to just get a scrape. It was heavy.

Candy called and we talked for about 20 minutes. They were planning to come out Sunday so Jim could help Bob. They had gone on a backpack trip with Carin the previous weekend into Horseshoe Lake.

My eldest brother got married again. My youngest brother and his wife were spending some time with our parents. Charlotte was going to summer school and Richard was a T.A. and also taking some classes—both in Seattle. They belonged to a rock-climbing group.

“Jeffrey read two short pages to me this afternoon. He’s doing very well—just needs practice. He asked to read. He was so pleased with himself this evening. I asked him if he’d look at the Mother Goose Book with Clarke (who was very fussy) while I finished the dishes. He did so and recited many of the rhymes he knew out loud. He’s never done that before and was pleased with his “reading”. “

Time Goes On: May-June 1972

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May 21, 1972-Sunday

Substituted last Friday for Fred Horschel at the high school. Thursday morning had put Florence’s painting in the window of the Thrift Shop. Blanche H. even contributed some dried apple dolls.

Was supposed to sub on Monday but the high school called and said the Senior Sneak had been cancelled. Subbed on Tuesday for Dave Ohde. We both got up early because Bob had some work to do at the office before his boss got there. Then in the afternoon he flew to Garberville and then to Victorville. I went to Rebecca’s ballet recital Tuesday night, leaving the boys with Jan Goodyear. “Rebecca has really improved a lot—is developing a natural grace. Marilyn really has done well with the youngsters.”

On the 25th, after substituting in the morning, I drove to Redding and attended part of a meeting on Roadless Areas being considered by the USFS. Gave a brief talk recommending that Castle Crags and Mt. Shasta area be included. Almost got hit by a long log on a Redding bound truck on my way home.

We were out at the ranch on the 29th and Bob said if I’d get Clarke dressed he’d watch the children for a while if I wanted to go for a walk. “I thought it too warm to go far but then walked clear up to the Upper Ranch in 1 ½ hours—really surprised myself and had a good time also. The first part of the trail is dark and damp like the redwoods—ferns, lush growth. Then one goes through pines and stretches of live oak, very dry. There was a trickle of water on one small gully and some in a spring, almost a mile from the ranch, which trickles out from under a stump. Here someone had made a little clay dam with the initials D.P. 5-27-72 in the clay.”

“The entrance of the trail into the Upper Meadow is quite dramatic—you burst out of the forest into a lovely, fan-shaped green meadow (which will soon be brown) with a little cabin at its upper end. I saw what looked like a white towel on the porch and was going to go look but a man stepped out onto the porch. He saw me and went back inside. I decided not to go up and talk. If he was ok then he deserved his privacy. If not then I really didn’t want to test his friendliness. I really scooted coming down. Was afraid Bob would be worrying—I’d told him I’d be back in 1½ hours. Got back about 1:15. Had been gone two hours and 15 minutes—not bad for that mileage! Also got some blisters. That is really a very nice hike. Would like to take the children and stay overnight up there sometime. “

“Fixed lunch for the children (Bob fixed his own), changed Clarke’s pants, washed the dishes, put Clarke down, washed Rebecca and Jeffrey’s hair and went over the kitchen area with a damp sponge. “

The next weekend we didn’t get out to the ranch until about 4. Ate lunch down at the creek on Sunday and the kids caught water skeeters (striders). We found a couple of salamanders that had gills just behind their heads. Water was very cold. Grosbeaks called all day.

June 1st—was watching TV. “President Nixon reported on his trip to Moscow. I really don’t see that a whole lot has been accomplished—the disarmament agreements don’t get rid of the weapons and bombs that are already built.”

Took the children out to Little French Creek on Monday after Clarke’s nap. We stayed about half an hour. On the way back up to the house we met a boy about 16 years old with a pack and rifle. He said he’d been at the Upper Ranch and some friend of his was staying up there the rest of the week. He was from Willow Creek and said he’d been going up there since he was eight. Saw a big black bear on our way home to Weaverville on the other side of the creek, across from the clay slide. Children enjoyed it.

Wednesday Warm Mt. School was having a meeting out at the lake for lunch and boating but I didn’t want Jeffrey to go without me and didn’t feel like getting a sitter for Clarke or staying out there all day. I suggested to Jeff that we go to Rush Creek for our own picnic instead and he was so agreeable about it. “A very adaptable boy and generally sweet tempered. “ Did some errands downtown, went to Varney’s. Back home to fix lunch and were out at Rush Creek by 11:30. Clarke spent most of his time on the edge of the water. Jeffrey chased a frog and got thoroughly wet. We were home by one and had Clarke down for a nap. Picked up Rebecca from piano lessons at 3:00.

On Tuesday I spent a couple of hours selling tickets for the Canyon Creek Trail clean-up raffle. Sold 44 tickets.

Substituted for Dave Ohde who took his physics class to the Bay Area. After school took the children to the Rush Creek Campground for an hour. Was scheduled to sub the next day too.

June 3rd we were out at the ranch again. Bob hooked up the new gas tank and we were able to read by lamplight! I was really getting tired of cleaning up mouse droppings every time we went out there. “makes me feel as if everything is filthy.”

Finished a book called “The San Francisco Earthquake”. I hadn’t realized that so much of the fires were caused by poorly used dynamite. Was starting a book called “The Descent of Woman”.

Candy and Jim Fields and Carin arrived around noon. We ate lunch and tried putting the two babies down for naps. After two hours we gave up and went down to the creek for an hour. Carin loved being swished up to her neck in that cold water by her parents. Went back to the house and fixed dinner. We tried putting Rebecca and Jeffrey out on the porch, the babies on a towel on the floor and grown-ups at the table. Carin and Clarke ended up eating mostly popsicles. Jim played with the children a lot, which they enjoyed, and it gave us time to do some clean up. Clarke played in the ashes dumped across the road so Bob took him upstairs and gave him a shower and clean clothes.

And suddenly my journal jumps to June 21st. During this gap there was Rebecca’s 7th birthday and we took a trip to Nehalem to see my parents. Our trip started on the 14th with a stop for gas at Ammirati’s in Castella. We saw Joe Ammirati and also Audrey McLeod. Audrey and her husband Whitey lived across the river when my family lived at Castle Crags.

We drove as far as Chemult and then began looking for a campground. We didn’t go the right way and finally, out of desperation stopped for salami sandwiches along a murky river, which ran through many cow pastures. We ate while dancing around slapping mosquitoes. We had a scare there as Clarke disappeared for a minute. I thought Rebecca or Bob was watching him. Bob thought Rebecca was watching him. I though he might have gone to the river just a few feet away but fortunately he was on a table nearby. We finally went up the correct road and ended up at a place called Yamsi.

It was a pretty campsite and I wished we’d gotten there sooner so the children could have played. As it was, by the time everyone was in bed (Clarke in the back seat of the car, Jeffery in the front, Bob, Rebecca and I outside in sleeping bags) and we’d boiled some water it was 10 o’clock.

About 1:00 a.m. Bob and I were awakened by a rifle shot. Someone was spotlighting deer and fired away about 100 yards up the road from where we were sleeping. The spotlight swept over us a few times. Then they drove on.

The camp was at the head of the Williamson River where about seven large springs bubbled up out of the gravel—a small, dry hillside above them. It was a pumice-covered area otherwise—covered with lodgepole pines. There was a ranger station across the river but we had the campground to ourselves. No tables or stoves but we used our table and Florence and Leonard’s prima stoves. There had been cattle through the area, which is why we boiled the water. There was a ranch across the river (which spread out into almost a small lake below our campground) and an occupied camp on the other side of that next to the grazing cattle. An amazing amount of water comes out of those springs. We had bacon and pancakes for breakfast, milk for everyone else and coffee for me, and cooked apricots.

A few years later I discovered a book called “Yamsi-A Year in the Life of a Wilderness Ranch” by Dayton O. Hyde. This was the ranch along the river. It is a wonderful book and I’d like to read it again. Dayton Hyde lived in Michigan and at age 13 caught a train to Oregon where he wanted to live on the Yamsi Ranch, a 6,000 acre ranch owned by his uncle. I just looked up some information about Hyde and discovered that when he was older he wanted to establish a place for wild horses so they wouldn’t have to be confined to cramped corrals. He went to South Dakota and helped establish a sanctuary for wild horses there. After that most of his time was spent in S. Dakota but he also continued to spend time at Yamsi. Hyde died at Yamsi in 2018 at the age of 93. He has written a number of books including one about raising a Sand Hill Crane, called “Sandy”.

April-May 1972

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“Ranger Rick Nature Magazine” notified me April 18th that I’d get paid $150 for “Linda Lives on a Lookout.” It would be published next spring. They would pay extra for photos—my memory is that photos were taken by Dave Ohde.

On Wednesday when I went to Warm Mt. School to pick up children there was roadwork that delayed me. Rebecca had taken the bus to piano lessons but had to wait about 45 minutes for me to pick her up afterwards. Sandwiched in there someplace was cleaning the oven in a couple of phases. Thursday included cleaning the refrigerator and also signing some papers at the Joss House so they could hire a new intermittent ranger. Leslie Callahan came to take care of children that evening while Bob and I drove to Redding to attend the Shasta County Air Pollution Control Board meeting. We found out that those boards are supposed to have 2 lawyers and a chemical engineer, which they had. Ours had Bob, an electrical engineer; Rev. Richens, a Baptist minister; and Vic Rose, a mill owner.

The next day the high school wanted me to substitute but I had an appointment in Redding with the pediatrician to get Clarke’s feet checked. He was fine, no special shoes required—toeing in will correct itself. He walks fine with no shoes, but trips with shoes. The receptionist/nurse ”kept commenting on what beautiful children I had, which is always nice to hear. She was especially taken with Clarke because she has one about that age. She even brought some doughnuts for the children—they were so hungry.” The appointment waiting time was long. We went to the city park to eat lunch and afterwards they played on the equipment for a few minutes. But I had to drag them away so we could go to the shoe store. Right after we ate, Clarke immediately headed for the river and would “probably have walked right off the edge into it if I hadn’t been with him.” Got sandals for Rebecca, tennis shoes for Jeff and high tops for Clarke but had to get some that were too long in order to fit his narrow feet. Then went to a Baskin Robins for ice cream and a service station for drinking and bathroom. Then to Weaverville and the grocery store, then home—
All of us exhausted. Jeff slept most of the way home, Clarke part way. Clarke fell asleep after dinner while I was putting on his pajamas.

Bob took Mike and Erin Quinn out to the ranch to help dig ditches for gas lines. We were going to get a large tank and the gas company would install it and fill it. This would be hooked up to the stove, the hot water heater and the refrigerator, eliminating the butane tanks which we had to haul out on their sides, not a safe procedure. We were also going to get the generator adapted so it could be fueled from that tank rather than using car gas—which it used it large quantities and on which we had to pay highway taxes. The children and I went out about noon, taking lunches. Rebecca was coughing and droopy so we left not long after lunch.

“The wind was blowing in tremendous gusts. The apple trees were all in full bloom. Standing under them was wonderful—the odor and the sight. When the wind blew, showers of petals would drift down in my face and petals were scattered across the grass.” I did clear out the overflow ditch that ran beneath the apple trees. When we got home Rebecca’s temperature was 102 and she complained of a sore throat. Bob didn’t get home until about 8:00. I had made two pumpkin pies (and Jeffrey a little one of his own) during the afternoon so we had turkey, pumpkin pie, etc. “Thanksgiving!” I’d fixed the turkey Saturday but it wasn’t done in time for dinner so we’d eaten eggs.

Monday Rebecca’s temperature was still 102 in the morning. Florence stayed with the children for an hour so I could do some shopping for food and then took the boys so I could take Rebecca to the doctor. Rebecca stayed home from school Tuesday and Wednesday. Bob flew to Stockton Wednesday morning and then to Gardnerville, Nevada to interview an employee, getting home around 7 that night.
“These dinners that start (preparation) at 4:30 and last until 8:30 or later by the time the dishes are done are for the birds though.”

Rebecca and Jeff turned our little frog loose today. We raised it from an egg.

“Rebecca made some hand puppets out of socks and wrote an act of a play to go with them. She wants to finish it tomorrow. I’m supposed to substitute tomorrow afternoon and all day Friday. “

My dad installed a shower downstairs at their house and said my mother was really enjoying it. With the stroke she couldn’t get upstairs to use one.

Candy Fields stopped in for a few minutes the previous afternoon to loan me a book. It was part 3 of a 3-book diary by Anais Nin and she herself was deeply involved in the books.

The two boys were both getting sick the next day so I had to cancel my substitute job. It was a beautiful sunny day with the temperature up to 75 degrees.

May 2nd-a warm, summery day but there was almost no water pressure and by noon the water was off. I picked up Rebecca and Nancy from ballet, having assumed there would be water by then. In the morning I had gone over to the U.S. Forest Service office to get information about the total number of acres the USFS owned in the United States. I was writing a letter to the Reader’s Digest in response to an article by a man had written about wanting all the wilderness to be “opened” up and tramways, etc. provided –he was making these comments to a Senate Subcommittee after he had visited Switzerland.

After dinner I took the children over to Florence and Leonard’s to give them a bath. Jeffrey sang “Here Comes Peter Cottontail” while in the tub—“he really belts songs out.”

The previous day, while I was running a mile and a half back and forth in the backyard, Clarke went over the bank on the kiddie car. It went all the way to the bottom but he got one foot caught on a bush half way down. He’d already fallen from the counter near the TV, taking the lamp with him, and from a chair near the table. I remember remarking that he was a climber when he first started toddling about.

That Sunday we went out to the ranch, after Bob had already gone first. He was going to rototill the garden but didn’t get to it because of doing plumbing for the gas tank. Clarke took a long nap and I shoveled a six-inch deep ditch from the gas hook-up near the peach tree (where the generator will eventually be) to the generator shed. Rebecca and Jeffrey went barefoot in the little water ditch that comes down under the apple trees. We didn’t get home until nearly 6:30. The older two took baths, then watched “Zoom” while they ate dinner. They found it hard to believe it was so late because we’d just switched to Daylight Savings Time.

I had substituted Friday afternoon and gone to Open House at the Elementary School that night. Two young children were killed in a fire on Hawthorne Street Friday morning. Heartbreaking to read this even now.

Rebecca was continuing to show high interest in piano lessons and had five Nancy Drew books checked out from the library.

On Saturday, May 6th I was writing by candlelight out at the ranch and trying to catch up on my notes. Friday I had substituted all day for Tina Bankston, who taught the three German classes plus World and English literature. “It was a beautiful day and we’d all have been much happier outside but they’re a pretty good bunch of kids in those classes and I had a pleasant day. Did sit outside most of one period when I had a tiny class.”

Bob had taken the day off and when I went home for lunch (was out of money) and
found the sink full of dishes, the bed unmade and no check I was rather upset apparently. But I cooled off later when I found out he’d hooked up the gas out at the ranch so we could have hot water, stove and refrigerator for that weekend.
“School got out at 1:50 so I drove out to Warm Mt. School and on the way gave a ride to a couple of high school kids who turned out to be friends of Scott’s. I didn’t know them but they knew I worked at the high school sometimes. They were hitch-hiking to Douglas City to go swimming. After delivering Donny and Ann Marie to Coverts I went over to Linda Lindsey’s and picked up Clarke, then out to Van Duyn’s to get Rebecca. Back to town to buy groceries and put them away. Heated up dinner, mostly leftovers. Sat down for 15 minutes to read the paper and have a glass of beer. Bob came home around 7:30. By then I had the kids fed, Clarke bathed and in bed, Rebecca in the tub and was reading to Jeffrey. By eight when we finally ate, they were in bed. After the dishes I started folding clothes but Clarke kept waking up, maybe an earache.” Makes me tired just reading about it.

May 6th—Bob had put sprinklers on the roof and may leave one there permanently to reduce the fire hazard and do some watering. He rototilled the garden that
afternoon and I dug around some of the few strawberries. Bob Hooper said that I could have some of theirs as they were going to be in Hayfork all summer. I took a quick walk up the road that goes to the Upper Ranch trailhead and found tracks of a jeep or Honda that had come from our place. Someone left an old bottle on our porch and I was going to take it to show to Florence, who was a bottle expert. Gave Clarke a bath in the sink and the other two had showers. Rebecca had started talking and worrying about things in the dark now—curtains, etc. Probably too much of reading Nancy Drew books. Children were all very restless that night but fortunately slept until eight.

Had some rain on Sunday but mostly nice. Bob worked most of the day on wiring the house. I planted the garden after lunch. We left after dinner. Kept Jeffrey home the next day because he’d come home with Bob and hadn’t gotten to bed until late. After morning chores, while the boys watched Captain Kangaroo, we went over to Hoopers and I got strawberry plants for us and for Linda Lindsey.

Bev Forero called and wanted to know whether I would be the Shasta Community Concert chairman for our area and I said I would.

Out at the ranch again the following weekend. Bob put pipe up to the sprinklers—I was really mad at the ground squirrels. They’d gotten into the garden and eaten most of the tomato plants so I spent an hour taking apart the piece of black roofing, under which there were two entrances to their burrows. Stripped off the tarpaper and took the boards apart with the claw hammer. It was a hot day and the children played in the sprinklers and with water.

The previous week Doris and Clarke and I went out to the ranch with a bag of steer manure that Florence had collected for me and after mixing it with peat moss we planted strawberries. Got back to town around 2:30. I’d left a note and some nuts for a snack for Rebecca and she was home only a few minutes by herself. Jeff was at Warm Mt. School.

Wednesday night the 4-year olds were supposed to stay overnight at Warm Mt. School. I wouldn’t let Jeff do it and the next afternoon when I went out to pick up Donny I was glad. The sink was piled high with dirty dishes, old spaghetti all over the bunkhouse and Donny was sick.

That Friday I substituted for Tina Bankston. She stayed home because it was her son’s first birthday. I took my accordion and played what few German songs I knew and the kids in the German II class knew.

I called Ella Hardison about ways of making $100 to help pay for a cleanup crew to clean up Canyon Creek Lakes Trail. The Sierra Club had $300 but needed $100 more. This was part of a U.S.F.S. project for various groups to do cleanup. She suggested a drawing on things made from recycled products. So we were well into planning it. Florence was even going to donate a painting of Canyon Creek Lakes.

Al Wilkins was being honored at a dinner in Redding as Sportsman of the Year for all of California. We had thought of going but then didn’t. Figured with 350 people there we wouldn’t be missed.

Mother’s Day was SOME Mother’s Day, I wrote. “ After breakfast Bob wanted me up on the roof to help hold a pipe while he fitted it—I haven’t been up on the roof in a long time and wasn’t at all enthusiastic about the prospect of falling off. Even scared a mouse out when climbing out the window. Neither one of us slept very much Saturday night so we were both rather cross. Bob finally got the pipe fitted after about an hour though and we have sprinklers on both ends of the house. He has also put a pipe up through the apple tree where the tree house is.”

“Later I mowed the lawn. Rebecca and Jeffrey ran though the sprinkler. Dinner was canned beans, canned brown bread and salad, which Jeffrey declared delicious. We got back to Weaverville about 8:30.”

Monday Ella Hardison and I got a window display up at the Thrift Shop while Florence watched the two boys. It was nearly noon when I got back to take the boys and Florence fed us all lunch. I left the boys there and went out to Warm Mt. School to pick up kids. Told Jeanne I wasn’t going to do transportation any more on Mondays because Jeff wouldn’t be going Mondays.

Tuesday night after dinner we got Patty Forero to watch children and went to a meeting of the Business and Professional Women at which Scott Carter spoke about Wilderness. Florence and Leonard were there as were Senta Moore, Vernon and Ruth Ryan, the Bushes, etc. Scott had some good slides and did a pretty good program.

Wednesday I took Bev Forero and Clarke out to the ranch. It had rained the day before and things were wet but we planted the last of the strawberries. I fixed a fire in the stove so we could warm up while we ate lunch and fixed a pot of coffee. Was supposed to go to a Stanley Party at Jeanne Meyer’s that night but couldn’t face it—tired and two nights in a row out already. Bob was gone to Garberville again and wouldn’t be back until Friday. Jeanne needed three people to qualify so she came up and stayed with the children so I could go down and hear the sales pitch.

Governor George Wallace was shot by an assassin Monday and was paralyzed from the waist down.

Read an article in the June McCalls about men in the 35-45 year age group reaching a time of crisis. Wondered whether my spouse might be approaching that. It was a time of summing up “of how far you can go and how far you’ve come, etc. Hope we both survive.” Hmmm. Interesting—don’t remember this. Little did I realize that the women’s movement was rapidly approaching.