Category: Journal

  • Moods

    There are mood changers all around us if we look for them. Here’s my list. I encourage you to make your own. When you smile at someone and they smile back Fresh flowers on the kitchen table Find an intact sand dollar Iced tea on a hot day Lay in a hammock Look at old […]

  • Finding Joy

    I have taken a break from any kind of “must do” or social media that tends to take me down a rabbit hole. I have been taking an internal inventory of my values to make sure I am living in alignment with them. It has been a journey of the soul, one that has opened […]

  • Rescued

    I was on my way home from work when my husband called me to ask how I like the Pyrenees. I told him that I absolutely love them. I thought he was referring to the mountain range I saw while traveling through Spain and France. He meant the dog breed. He told me he was […]

  • Confidence

    More than just thinking positively and with confidence, you have to put it into action. Action, actually, is the key to developing self-confidence. It’s one thing to learn to think positive, but when you start acting on it, you change yourself, one action at a time. You are what you do, and so if you […]

  • Name Calling

    Children will own the names you call them. Choose your words carefully. This is good advice for teachers, but especially important that parents know this too. They are a child’s first teacher. Call them scholars, call them friends, call them writers, call them mathematicians, call them scientists, call them teachers, call them helpers, call them […]

  • Quilts for Grandkids

    Quilts for Grandkids

    It gives me great joy to put my love into each quilt. They sleep under a blanket of love. I have a Babylock Spirit Embroidery Machine that I use for the designs. Post retirement activities. So fun.

  • Tradition

    One of the pleasures of summer is that I usually travel to visit my darling granddaughters in the UK. I established a tradition of buying new shoes for the girls at my favorite shoe store, Clarks. Once they were able to walk, we would go into a city center to get their feet sized properly. […]

  • Feeling Safe

    Feeling protected provides us with warmth, confidence and security. Feeling wanted leads to feeling safe. Being safe is the absence of beating yourself up or feeling that all that is good in your life is a moment away from vanishing forever. When you are protected, you know deeply that you deserve to live in a […]

  • A Little Love

    More important than me loving you, is you loving yourself. I’ve been thinking a lot about self-love and how it is not selfish to love and care for yourself. Sadness, loneliness and despair can keep you trapped in a downward spiral. Self-pity can wrap around you like a poisonous vine. I love a quote from […]

  • Find Joy in Simple Things

    I had the pleasure of having my grandson spend the night at my house for the first time. I think my son sensed that I could benefit from a break in my routine. It’s obvious that time with my grandson always makes me smile, so when he asked if I would care for Maverick overnight […]

  • The Ride of my life

    The palm tree out my window reminds me of my trip to Hawaii almost fourteen years ago. Two weeks before our planned adventure my husband bought me my first surfboard and wetsuit. Being an avid surfer himself, he wanted me to know how thrilling it can be to ride the waves. He made it look […]

  • A Much Needed Drive

    The sun broke through the clouds turning a dreary morning into a prelude to the perfect spring day. I knew I had to get out into nature. My husband and I have had both vaccinations, so we decided to take a drive up Hwy 1. We were 10 miles from home when we realized that […]

  • Gifts From The Sea

    My granddaughter’s name, Kaia, means “Sea.” She loves all things ocean. Of all the books I have, and two toy boxes of toys, she prefers to sort my seashells. We spent more than an hour deciding how to sort them (color, size, uniqueness). When it was bath time, she insisted on taking some shells into […]

  • Books Anyone?

    If you are like many people today you use your cell phone, Ipad or laptop to get updates on news and happenings. I encourage you to make time for reading a book instead. The benefits are worthy of your time and attention. You have heard the phrase, “Use it or lose it.” Well, it applies […]

  • Quit Now

    The time to hit the redo button is now.

  • Tea Time

    A child’s imagination is fueled by experiences. Play fosters all kinds of opportunities to engage in cooperative interaction. My granddaughter loves to make tea for me. She started when she was almost two. She would ask me if I wanted some tea, and I would reply that I would love it if she would add […]

  • My Baby Girl’s Baby Girl

    To me there are indescribable moments in a mother’s life that are forever in her memory. My daughter, Katie, is my youngest. Unlike me, she waited to have children. She was focused on college and a career. She established herself as a lecturer in anthropology and my son-in-law completed his studies as a doctor. After […]

  • Making Rock Towers

  • Grow Things you can eat

    I learned many things from the pandemic. I learned that buying groceries would be a dangerous prospect if you are in a vulnerable category. Some of the online “shoppers” were not careful to check expiration dates, leaving me with food that wasn’t fit to eat. Prices were inflated. My ability to buy fresh fruits and […]

  • Making Memories

    My son took his family to see the area where he attended college. They packed up their camping gear and headed for Humboldt in their newly acquired travel trailer. He told his wife and children about his adventures rowing crew, climbing rocks at Patrick’s Point, and how his path to class was through the forest […]

  • Breakfast smoothie

    Almost every morning I make a breakfast smoothie. I am not on any diet. I just love smoothies, and like to know that I am eating healthy food. One eight ounce glass is enough to give me energy and fill me until afternoon. I use my Vitamix Blender, but I have used a Ninja blender […]

  • Grandkids


    For me there is no greater joy than watching my grandkids grow, learn, laugh. I love their discoveries, the belly laughs and spontaneous kisses. They remind me of how important it is to make good memories.

  • Free Little Library

    I’ve wanted a free library ever since I saw one a few years ago. It was conveniently placed in a yard near the entrance to the beach parking lot near my home. It inspired me to investigate the cost of making one. Inside that little library there were a variety of paperbacks and several children’s […]

  • To My Grandchildren

    Dear Grandchildren, I see your tiny bodies and I am grateful for every breath you take. Each of you are the greatest joy of my life. Holding you in my arms takes me back to when your parent was my baby. I had no experience or guide, but a heart full of love. I learned […]

  • Carry On

    There have been so many times of uncertainty caused by the global pandemic. Times when it was hard to plan for the future, or even tomorrow. One thing I told myself again and again, ” I will follow guidelines, and I will not put myself or others in danger.” I also worried if I would […]

  • Make a Wish

    When was the last time you picked a dandelion and blew the seeds while you made a wish? Why is it so easy for children to embrace simple joys, while adults rarely give themselves permission to engage in a nature moment for the soul? At a friend’s house recently, I noticed a group of red […]

  • A Pilgrimage

    All my life I have wanted to visit Lourdes. I grew up hearing of the healing waters and the little girl who saw a vision of The Virgin Mary. I had the opportunity to travel to see my daughter who lived in England, and my son-in-law treated me to a trip by car to Lourdes., […]

  • Happy Birthday to me

    Today is my birthday and I am happy and grateful to enjoy another year. Getting older would not be my first choice, but I can kick up a fuss or embrace it. My goal this year is to eat right, show gratitude, give love more often, smile more, learn more, travel. read, sew, have adventures, […]

  • I am grateful

    I have many reasons to be grateful. It’s been a tough year, but at times I see glimmers of hope that we may all be on the road to living whatever our normal was, only stronger, better, more resilient. A trip to the grocery store, then my favorite cafe took on a new ambiance. I […]

  • Books Kids Would Like

    A charismatic clan of chinchillas confronts everyday problems in this humorous story of family life and troubles. Jerome discovers the magic of the words all around him — short and sweet words, two-syllable treats, and multisyllable words that sound like little songs. Words that connect, transform, and empower.  In this hilarious book, Richard T. Morris […]

  • If Only

    If only we saw each other’s hearts, minds, souls…… We are one race, human.  We really need to realize that love is infinitely more powerful than hate. Children are not born being prejudiced. They learn what they live. We can change the way things are by keeping mindful of the kind of life we hope […]

  • Free Online Reading Sites for students

    Curiosity: The Story of a Mars Rover Live Khalifa and Amal;gclid=CjwKCAiAkJKCBhAyEiwAKQBCkvuLaEZjQhj6SG97wjxb5OolcY-uNNlU-26QO_2ntGH9UspTTMyFmRoCWlAQAvD_BwE **********************************************************************************

  • Free Online Reading Sites for students **********************************************************************************

  • Dreaming of Paris

    Paris is my kind of city. The people, the food, the sights live in my memory. When I saw all the locks on the Ponts de Arts Bridge, I thought of all the lovers whose hopes and dreams were placed there, likely with good intent. In my mind I likened the locks to graffiti. While […]

  • Have Golf Cart, Will Travel

    I saw the ad for a used golf cart in my Nextdoor app. There were two available, a red and a blue. The owner was storing them in a horse corral. I was saving money for a golf cart (even though I don’t golf) because I live in a small beach town with one main […]

  • Dreaming of Costa Rica

    The pandemic has made me a shut- in and I hate it. I am a traveler forced to travel only in my mind. Lately I have been dreaming of Costa Rica. I’ve only been there once, but it left such an impression that I find myself daydreaming of being there. I went with 22 avid […]

  • A Man And his dog

    I have to confess that I am a little bit jealous of our dog, Max. He visits the salon more than I ever have.He is a rescued Great Pyrenees who stole my husband’s heart with his sad eyes and beautiful white fur as he sat in a too-small cage at the animal shelter. Max ate […]

  • Neighborhood Library box

    I am a book lover. I wish I had a library next door. My dream is to someday own a bookstore, or work in one. While driving in my golf cart I passed by a little library box next to the parking lot for the beach. I had to take a look. Some thoughtful person, […]

  • My English roses

    When my daughter asked me if she could be a summer camp counselor in the hills of Santa Cruz, at first I said no. The distance from our house to the camp was too far and I was not keen on letting her go by herself. She approached me again, this time she had a […]

  • After The Rain

    There were 60mph winds and torrential rains in our little beach town. Tree limbs blocked roads, lawn chairs flew to a neighboring yard, and birds found refuge anywhere they could. I know the thirsty earth needed the rain, but it made the pandemic isolation even lonelier. Today the sun is out and the birds are […]

  • Living in a Beach Town

    I am one of the lucky ones who has a view of the Pacific Ocean from my living room window. Our home was purchased 24 years ago when it was doable on teacher salaries. I sit out on my upstairs deck and watch the waves curl angrily on windy days and gently on mild spring […]

  • Reflections

    The day I became a grandmother I began evaluating my life, or I should say reevaluating it. I realized that this beautiful child is not mine and I am a part of a much bigger picture, yet only a part. What part do I play? As a retired elementary teacher I know the joy of […]

  • Resources For Early Literacy

    Resources For Early Literacy

    Phonemic Awareness A child may be able to recite the alphabet, but they need to first learn SOUNDS. Most of reading problems come from a lack of phonemic awareness (knowledge of sounds). When teaching this skill you would not introduce letters yet. Sounds first! There are many ways to do that. The following items will […]

  • Sight Words

    Sight words comprise close to 70 of the words we read. For a child to be a fluent reader, it is important that sight words are stored in long term memory. That requires practice through games and engaging activities that activate various parts of the brain. Sight words are often words that cannot be sounded […]

  • The Joy of Read Alouds

    Children that are read to learn that symbols on the page hold meaning. They learn to hold a book, care for a book, how to read from left to right, and how to turn pages. Most importantly they associate books with pleasure. For struggling readers the anxiety of having to decode is eliminated. They can […]