Saturday, January 24
Another cold day, some high clouds. Tuesday night Bob and I went to Hayfork. It was my first meeting as chairman of the Forest Forum– I was a little nervous and did a couple of dumb things—like saying dismissed instead of adjourned but otherwise I guess it was o.k. Audrey Bush was guest speaker and talked about the Trinity River Task Force. She seemed well received. Linda Ohde babysat.
Wednesday afternoon Clarke went on the bus to Linda Lindsey’s. I left the house at about quarter to 3, leaving Jeff to wait for Rebecca. Left her a note saying they could walk downtown, go to the library and go to Brown’s, which they did. Bob and I went, in separate cars, to a meeting of the North Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board. They had three members of the board, two staff members, and David Joseph, executive officer. Afterwards I went up to introduce myself to David Joseph. Before I could say anything he said, “I’ll bet you’re Susy Morris”. He said I looked like my brother Peter.
Thursday I got Sue Rose to work for me at Nursery School. I was really tired and wanted to get some stuff done at home. Also ended up being another one of those yucky feeling days. Got bread made though and chocolate chip cookies baked in the afternoon. That night I had a nursery school meeting. Bob took Jeffrey and Clarke to Scouts. I went to my meeting and Rebecca went to a movie with Linda Ohde. The movie was supposed to go from 7-9 but at 8:30 they came over and asked whether they could go to the later show since the theater had filled before they could get in, after standing out in the cold for nearly an hour. Doris fed them soup and loaned Rebecca one of Linda’s jackets. Rebecca didn’t get home until nearly midnight.
The scout meeting was successful. Jeff and Bob read the skit and the boys acted it out. It sounded as if Bob did better on the reading than I would have—probably helpful to have a man doing it.
Ken Wahl came (from Redding) to speak to the nursery school mothers. We had six absent but three brought husbands and two extra came. He was really very good with them I thought, brought his wife also. His topic was Parent Effectiveness Training.
Friday morning I took Clarke to Linda Lindsey’s and took a hike. It was cold and I ended up getting rained on but was probably good to get out. I came home early, ran a few errands and then went over to the scout house. No one was there but the boys so I stayed. Linda, the scout leader, got there 10 minutes later. The boys were wild and I scolded them some. We ended up taking them out to sell tickets for the Scout-orama. I took three of them and she took three.
By early February I was in bed with pneumonia. Bob had been gone the previous week. But, after a couple of shots in the rear from our doctor I was confined to bed—well, after running a few last-minute errands and washing and drying a lot of clothes so the children could go stay with grandparents. They were so excited about going that they charged out the door without saying goodbye. A couple of minutes later they were back in the house, with their father standing behind them, all in a row, all smiling, to say goodbye. I told Bob later that at that moment I thought, “Those can’t be my children. They are their own people!” It was really kind of exciting. I hope none of them get sick. Bob was really caring that weekend.
The next morning Bob left for Bakersfield and would be back Friday. I was supposed to stay in bed except for self-care. That morning I cheated a little. Washed my hair and typed up three pages for Sue Rose to use for the night class Thursday.
Florence left me a book called “Almost Home” about a family living on the Audubon Canyon Ranch near Tamale’s Bay. “I’m not really turned on by all the food raising but enjoyed the biological stuff. Beautiful photographs.”
Saturday Candie and Jim and Carin came by. They visited for about an hour and then took all of our children and went out to Douglas City for awhile. When they brought them back they stayed for a while too. Candie had called Tuesday at the precise minute I had been thinking about how I should be writing her a letter.
Florence and Leonard got back from a fishing trip on the Smith River. They stayed in a trailer park across from Jedediah Smith State Park –the RV park being where the motel cabins I cleaned one summer used to be when my parents first moved to Jedediah Smith after Castle Crags.
We received a one-pound can of homemade toffee from Nancy and David Adrian.
Last Tuesday, before my illness, we took the nursery school kids to Greg Olson’s (pottery maker) in two separate groups. Thursday I took Jeff down to Greg’s and he was spellbound. Sat right up there beside Greg and watched him make a planter.
Florence came up for a few minutes with Jeff at 2 and again with Rebecca and Clarke at 3. They took the kids’ bikes. Scott and Kathleen were sick too and Florence said Douglas City School was closed because of flu. She brought me a new hot water bottle because mine was leaking. I was enjoying good music on KKHI.
On Tuesday I discovered ants all over the open jar of honey in the cupboard under the stove counter. Fortunately they couldn’t get into it. I washed all of them off and cleaned out the cupboard, then fixed breakfast, than vacuumed some rooms. Spent some time cleaning junk out of the vaporizer.
Sue Rose came up around 11 bringing a pitcher of juice and a plant from the nursery school mothers. She also took my key to get the nursery school mail. Sue brought a book called “Mister God, This Is Anna”—really something! Anna was a 4-year old waif in England who ran away from home after being beaten and was taken in by an 18-year old and his family. A brilliant little girl and the book is movingly written.
Bob called around six. Said it was showering down there. The storm we were supposed to get bypassed us, just leaving cold air and wind.
Florence brought up our mail. Included was a letter from the National Wildlife Federation saying they had accepted my article and photos I’d sent and final acceptance and payment would arrive three months before Ranger Rick publication!
Children were up here for a few minutes with Florence. They’re excited about Valentine’s Day arriving, to be celebrated at school on the 11th.
To avoid forbidden exercise I was getting the Redding paper by driving down our driveway, turning around in Moon Lee’s driveway, and crossing to ours again.
Started re-reading the book “Yamsi”. It’s such a good book. What a hard life though.
Bob called Thursday night and we talked for a bout 20 minutes. “I feel as if he’s my only anchor right now.” San Francisco received three inches of snow.
Friday I gave the living room a quick vacuum. Found ants all over the bathmat at 2 a.m. and stuck it in the washing machine for a hot water rinse.
Sue Rose called and said the class went fine last night, which was good to know.
Doctor said I’m better but not well and need to spend another week in bed. Got another shot.
Amy Bancroft ate dinner with Rebecca at Florence and Leonard’s. Florence had them doing dishes afterwards.
Bob got home Friday night. The next day I fixed ingredients for French toast and cooked my own. Was eating when he got up. Bob bought groceries from my list. Then he picked up the boys, brought them here briefly and went out to the ranch. Rebecca stayed at the grandparent’s and read.
I prepared food for salad and spaghetti and was just sitting down to watch the news when Bob and children arrived. The boys were eating with us and staying the night but had to go back to Florence and Leonard’s for the rest of the week. Bob said there were no trees across the road and what rocks there were he was able to dodge. Florence and Leonard had Rotary Ladies Night dinner to go to. I think he must have picked up Rebecca to on his way back from the ranch. “It’s kind of nice to have people in the house again, messy and noisy though they may be.” I read to Clarke tonight.
I’d started reading a book called “Animal Architecture” by Karl Von Frisch. “It’s really interesting. Learned quite a bit about Garden Spiders and how they make their webs. It’s just the females that make the big webs like we have out at the ranch, and they use several different kinds of silk. I wish I could remember everything I read. I’d be an encyclopedia!”
I began doing more, whenever I had the energy. Housework of some kind was always waiting, it seemed. Over the next few days made a couple of necessary phone calls. We went over to Florence and Leonard’s to celebrate his birthday one evening. Kids all had colds but I read Clarke a bedtime story before we left. Florence brought the children up for a few hours the next day. Bob went over to see them after dinner a number of times. I would get some things done and then rest a few hours.
The children were home again and my schedule was pretty normal by the 20th. Had to miss the Forest Forum, which had a good turnout, put on by the Coastal Commission. Bob and Leonard went though.
I was so fortunate to have the help that I did—primarily from Florence, of course but others stepped up: Sue Rose took over on nursery school classes; Doris brought homemade clam chowder and a loaf of fresh bread; and others. Our little family wouldn’t have made it without Florence.
Took my Community Concert tickets to Virginia and Gordon Pierce. They wanted to hear Leonard Pennario, a pianist and composer. They also signed up for tickets to next year’s series.