Friday, December 25, 2009

A slightly-less-merry-than-usual Christmas

The plan this year for the holidays was to celebrate Christmas in Santa Cruz and head up to Seattle on the train Christmas Day night. But, on Christmas Eve Day Frances had abdominal pains that went from really painful to much worse. By 6:30pm we were in the emergency room.

A night of tests and a morphine drip instead of sugar plum fairies. The diagnosis: a giant gall stone and badly inflamed gallbladder. Surgery on Christmas Day. No fun at all for poor Frances, but it worked! She is feeling much better after the surgery.

John is guarding the tree and presents till his mother gets back.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

80--the new 55

My Dad turned 80 this year. Zipped up to Whidbey Island to participate in the wild celebrations.

He is doing great.

The weather was pretty awful - cold and rainy. Didn't get in the way!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

17 and counting

The gal turned 17 this year. With her birthday guitar--a wonderful little 1974 Yairi nylon string.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Kitty on the big stage

Thursday of this week Frances and I went to a luncheon with about 200 other people to see the 2009 "Be the Difference" volunteer awards for Santa Cruz County for this year. There were lots of amazing stories about people in the county who spend may hours volunteering for many excellent causes. Among the many nominees for the individual award, Kitty was honored this year with the volunteer of the year!

Although she dreaded the event and all the attention, this is a really wonderful recognition of her passion for food justice and sustainability and the many hours she puts into all her community service activities. I was bursting with pride...

The two girls getting ready to go and Kitty getting the award which include a US Congressional certificate of recognition

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Brace yourself

After about 200 years according to the boy, he got his braces off today.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Ouch II

Well, we are on a first name basis with the x-ray technician at Urgent Care. John went over the handle bars of his mountain bike and broke a bone in his wrist.

So, for 4 weeks or more:

--no biking (he had biked every day to school this year)

--no climbing (he was signed up for the lead class at the local gym)

--no guitar (he is amazingly good at playing the guitar with one hand and an elbow)

--no swimming

--no surfing

Big bummer.

Thursday, September 3, 2009


I play basketball and always have. So, I've had a ball hit one of my fingers head-on and "jammed" the finger about a million times. It hurts, swells up and takes a surprisingly long time to stop hurting.

This week I was playing, caught a ball on the end of my finger and it hurt more than usual. Looked down and almost fainted! The middle bone in my finger had dislocated from the second knuckle and was pulled back below the knuckle! This is a disconcerting sight! The right thing to do to ease the pain seemed to be to pull on the finger. I did that and the bone ground back into place. Didn't hurt so much any more, the score was 10 - 10 in a game to 12 so I finished up (we won).

Went down to Urgent Care and learned that this was a "full dislocation" and I had performed a "field reduction" (pretty well - they offered me a job at the emergency room on the late night weekend shift).

When you do this, all the ligaments and tendons get stretched out so it is a good idea to split the joint for 2 or 3 weeks till they tighten up and the joint gets stable again. Makes it hard to:

1) type
2) play guitar
3) go climbing

This is not my finger (no x-ray machine at the basketball court), but is a great example of the specific dislocation.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Tuolumne 2009 II

It was too much fun being in Tuolumne, so John and I headed back. Bit of climbing at Puppy Dome.

Then up early Saturday morning to tackle Shagadelic on Medlicott.

On the steep approach

4 pitches, 5.8 climbing on mostly steep knobs

Great views on the top

A long hike back to the car. The boy (and his Dad) were tired!

Ton of fun!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Tuolumne Meadows 2009

First week of August we took our annual trip to Tuolumne Meadows. It was the usual gathering of friends up at the TMds campground.

Steve's Birthday was celebrated down at the now famous Mobile Station

The weather was a little more unsettled than usual, including a bit of snow/sleet toward the end of the week.

But, we did the usual mix of hiking, climbing and hanging out.

Kitty and I checked out Gaylor Lakes (beautiful).

We climbed the Golfer's Route, Guide Cracks and Puppy Crack.

Steve and Kevin zipped up Holdless Horror while Kitty John and I climbed a nice 3-pitch face/knob climb called Errett Bit. Note my  lack of  sport-climbing  skills (the clip).

Frances caught a shot of bear #60 in the campground.

Last day we took a stroll around the meadows under very stormy skies and occasional snow/sleet showers and headed home.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Washington Bolte Visit: June 2009

Sister Becky and her son Matt came down for a visit from Washington. They wanted to check out UCSC as a possible school for Matt and to check out California summer fun. We had fun:

Matt and John helped Kitty whip the PCS Life Lab Garden into shape

Matt helped John break in his new birthday board

The oldsters checked out the amazing California Legion of Honor while the kids bussed around to the interesting parts of San Francisco (Chinatown, Haught)

Spent a great day at Point Lobos

The boy turned 14