Saturday, February 27, 1999

Half Dome from the Valley Floor

Dear Steven, Grandy, Pappy, Grandmother, and Granddaddy,

Happy Birthday, Grandy! We will try to call you this afternoon. I imagine you will go out for dinner. I hope our package arrived on time.

Steven, I'm glad Dad was able to communicate with you through email this week. I hope you did well on your tests and completed you papers okay. I hope this week will be a little easier. I am looking forward to finding out what classes you signed up for Friday for next quarter. I hope that went well. I'm also interested in knowing your final exam schedule for June so that we know what we face in terms of vacation planning. Thanks for sending your travel plans for March/April. It really isn't that far off! I plan to make cookies this weekend.

This was an uneventful week for us. Steve is slowly getting better, but he still has nasty coughing fits. He does feel stronger, though, and is working full days again. Today he is cleaning up clutter around the house while waiting for Pacific Bell to come to install a DSL server. That way we can be connected to the internet twenty-four hours a day. Ahhh, technology. Steve said that he does not have any travel plans for the near future, so we will get spoiled having him at home.

Michael has begun practices for track and field shot put and discus throwing. He stays after school everyday until 5:15 and comes home every evening with a new batch of sore muscles. He says there is a lot of room for improvement in his technique, but he is enjoying it very much. He particularly likes the discus throwing. He says that it is very complicated with all of the hops and turns, but he enjoys the challenge. He had a relatively easy school week, but he spent a lot of time planning the Boy Scout bike hike for which he is the camp master. They left at 7:00 this morning to go to the east bay Coyote Hills area near Niles Canyon. They plan to bicycle a twenty-mile course and then camp overnight. They will work with the younger scouts tomorrow on advancement skills and come home around 2:00 p.m. Michael and his patrol (the senior staff) had fun planning their menus since they are car camping. They planned steak for dinner, pancakes, bacon, and hashbrowns for breakfast, and sub sandwiches for lunch. They wanted to get a half pound of bacon per person (!!), and huge amounts of food. They were surprised to find that the cost would be $20.00 per person and were trying to figure a way to make that palatable to the adults assigned to their patrol. (Costs per weekend usually amount to about $5.00 per person.) Anyway, I'm sure they will have a great time if it doesn't pour down rain. Last night Michael went to the Sadie Hawkins Dance with Rochelle Smith, a friend from band. They ate dinner with others before the dance, but we haven't heard any details yet because he came in late last night and left early this morning.

David also had a relatively easy school week, and that is unusual for him. Maybe he is just getting better organized. He had two baseball practices, and it looks like he will have practices every Monday and Friday. That means that we need to see if we can change his piano lesson because that will be a conflict. He likes his coaches and team members, so I think he will have a fun season. Today he is at a Lyceum class in the Saratoga foothills going up Big Basin Way. He is at an all-day ropes course where kids have to work in teams to complete physical challenges using ropes. It is a team-building exercise and is very fun. He went at 9:00, and I will pick him up at 4:00. Thirty children are participating, and David saw someone he knew when we got there. He jumped right in without even saying good-bye, so I know he will have a good time.

I spent the first part of the week trying to get reorganized after our Yosemite trip. I had two evening meetings, one of which concerned the district's proposed schedule change that will shorten the school day for the junior high school children. It could mean a reduction in the number of classes they can take, so of course, I am opposed to that. It is becoming quite a hot topic in the district, and the newspapers are becoming interested. I really wish that our superintendent would leave before he causes any more damage to the district. I'm afraid he will wreak havoc before he decides it is time to move on. At least this is an area that parents, teachers, and principals tend to agree on. I substituted on Friday for a teacher with three typing classes, a math class, and a drama class. It was fun. My next job is a three-day one beginning next Thursday. Tomorrow night, Steve and I will serve on boards of review for twin boys who are attaining the rank of Eagle. Steven, the Gavidia boys had their scoutmaster's conferences with a day or two to spare, but their boards of review are taking place after their birthdays. I hope everything goes well!

I hope Aunt Doris' cataract surgery went well this past week. I am encouraged by your reports that she is showing somewhat steady improvement. I hope everyone else is doing well, too.

We'll talk to you all soon.


Upper and lower Yosemite Falls