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  Santa Cruz Parent Santa Cruz, CA

February 12, 2015

Make Your Own Valentines, Inspiration from Pinterest

LitWits: Sunshine on My Shoulders
Alpha Mom's Homemade Bird Feeder
Christine: Nature or Nurture in Extrovert Honeybees

Dear Genius
This Week
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(Valentines Homemade) Valentine_BirdFeeder.jpgHappy Valentine's Day, a day for sharing funny, loving, mushy, corny, sentimental or romantic messages with friends, family and sweethearts! 

As a child it was one of my favorite holidays.  At home we made our own valentine boxes with a slit for friends to slip valentines into and prepared homemade or store-bought valentines for classmates and our teacher.  On days leading up to the big day, we decorated the classroom with our Valentine artwork including painting on the windows.  Parents brought cakes, cupcakes, candy and soda to the classroom in the morning and we looked longingly at them all day long.  The highlight of the party, wisely held the last hour of the day, was playing postman and delivering our valentines to friends.  Then we all sat around opening our cards and sugaring up!  It's different now, a little less sugar, but I daresay the anticipation of giving or receiving a special message from an admirerer , known or anonymous, lives in the heart of each of us.

(Valentines Homemade) ValentineILoveHangingWithYou.jpgI'm sure you're all way ahead of me.  I've recently become acquainted with Pinterest, so I searched for "homemade valentines"  and came up with tons of ideas to share with you!

The Weekend   ~ Parenting Support  ~  Parks

Thank you for your interest in our newsletter and for sending many new families our way. Please, drop us a line anytime and recommend us to a friend

Have a lovely Valentine weekend with family and friends, Parmalee

  Make Your Own Valentines, Inspiration from Pinterest

Find these and more on Pinterest.  Have fun!

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(Valentines Homemade) Valentine_Ladybug.jpg

(Valentines Homemade) Valentine_Flamingo.jpg
(Valentines Homemade) Valentine_ThumbodyLovesYou.jpg
 (Valentines Homemade) Valentine_ImWildAboutYou.jpg
(Valentines Homemade) Valentine_MicetoKnowYou.jpg
(Valentines Homemade) Valentine_ILoveYouSewMuch.jpg
 (Valentines Homemade) Valentine_IMustache.jpg
 

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  LitWits: Sunshine on My Shoulders

Sunshine on My Shoulders

by Jenny

You know that squirm.  The move that means your student (or spouse) has had enough.  Enough of your patient explanations, your helpful advice, even your encouraging words.  It's a move that says back off.

It can be kind of annoying, don't you think? After all, we're just trying to help.

Not long ago I was walking in the woods, wondering why something I'd said as encouragement hadn't been well received. At the edge of the woods, the trail emerged in an open stretch of sun.  I squinted and turned, walking backward for a bit, so the light wouldn't be in my face. When I slipped out of my sweatshirt and tied it around my waist, Aesop's fable of the North Wind and the Sun came to mind. 

Do you remember the story?  The two were competing to see who could force the cloak from a man.  The wind whipped at it fiercely, but the man only clutched it more tightly; the sun simply beamed, and the man took it off right away.  It's a fable of persuasion over power.

But it occurred to me, walking backward against the sun, that it's also about too much warmth  - encouragement, fervor, support . That all that beaming and shining was making the man uncomfortable.  Even a little sweaty, maybe. Such warmth can be overwhelming, even unwelcome, when it's too intense or in your face instead of at your back.

I realized that I myself would prefer an arm around my shoulder, a quick little backrub, a quiet "you can do it - I've got your back."  I'd rather have indirect light.  Illumination, not a blinding glare. 

Sometimes we learn more about ourselves from indirect lessons, as I did that day.  I "got it" from the bright heat of the sun, a lingering conversation, and a fable I'd read as a child.  The life-changing lesson wasn't taught; it happened.

(Photos General) BeckyandJenny.jpgIn fact, this very idea of experiential, indirect teaching is the LitWits approach to literature. We don't have to turn up the heat for kids to "get it."  We illuminate stories from behind and allow the aha! moments to happen. We play with great books for fun, with the sun at our backs.

And no one ever - hardly ever - squirms.

Becky Clendenen Kimball and Jenny Clendenen Walicek, Sisters, Friends, and Partners ~ LitWits Workshops(Click here for our creds!)

  Alpha Mom's Homemade Bird Feeder

Homemade Bird Feeders

3 cups birdseed, 2 - 1/4 ounce unflavored gelatin packet, cookie cutters, twine

(Valentines Homemade) Valentine_BirdFeeder.jpg


Alpha Mom

  • Sprinkle two packages of gelatin over 1/2 cup cold water. Let it sit a couple of minutes until gelatin has absorbed the water. Heat 1 3/4 cups water in a pan, then add in the gelatin mixture. Stir until dissolved. Stir in 3 cups birdseed.
  • Allow mixture to cool until gelatin is thick and coats all the birdseed.
  • Wrap a piece of foil along the bottom and up the sides of a cookie cutter. Spray foil and cookie cutter with cooking spray. We used a 5 inch heart cookie cutter. This mixture was enough to make three bird feeders.
  • Pack birdseed mixture inside cookie cutter. Place a piece of straw in birdseed to leave a hole for hanging the bird feeder.
  • Allow mixture to harden and then remove from cookie cutter. We placed ours in the freezer for about and hour to speed things up.
  • Add a piece of twine for hanging.
  Christine: Nature or Nurture in Extrovert Honeybees

(Photos General) honeybee.jpgThere is always discussion among behaviorists about where different behaviors arise. The famous question - Is is nature or nurture? Does the behavior come from genetics or something in the upbringing. The question has now been at least partially answered for honey bees.

Some researchers from University of Illinois looked at honey bees. They focused on the scouts (the bees that forage for new nectar sources) and non-scouts (bees that go to established sources and bring nectar back to the hive).

These researchers kept adding new sources of nectar near a hive. They would mark the bees that would consistently find the new sources versus the bees that only went to established sources. When they looked at the genetics of the two groups they found distinct differences....Read more>>>>>>

Chistine is a local mom and scientist who makes science easy to understand.  You can find her blog here

 

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  Dear Genius

How Ursula Nordstrom, the Greatest Patron Saint of Modern Childhood Stood, Up for Creativity Against Commercial Cowardice

by Maria Popova

"Oh hell, it just boils down to: you just can't explain this sort of basic wonderful stuff to some adults."

Hardly anyone has raised more conscientious, imaginative children than legendary Harper & Row children's book editor Ursula Nordstrom (February 2, 1910-October 11, 1988), who brought to life such multi-generational classics as Margaret Wise Brown's Goodnight Moon (1947), E. B. White's Charlotte's Web (1952), Maurice Sendak's Where the Wild Things Are (1963), and Shel Silverstein's The Giving Tree (1964). Nordstrom was more than an editor to her authors and artists - she was often their therapist, confidante and friend, and always their creative guardian and greatest champion. Above all, Nordstrom was a fearless custodian of the child's world and imaginative experience, to which unimaginative grownups so often lay perilous claim, and of the artist's creative integrity in the face of growing commercial pressures toward marketable conformity and safe, commodified, politely pedestrian storytelling. Modern childhood's most benevolent patron saint turned out to be a childless gay woman living through the height of consumerism in America and yet managing to envision, publish, and defend children's books that were not forgettable commodities but masterpieces that stood the test of time and enchanted generations.

Her deeply lovable spirit blossoms in the pages of Dear Genius: The Letters of Ursula Nordstrom (public library) - an endlessly rewarding volume by children's book historian Leonard Marcus, which also gave us...continued>>>>

  This Week

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February in the Parks

 

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School Corner

LitWits Master Class 9-12, The Pearl 2/13 & 20

 

Learn to Discover, Electronics & Programming Classes

 

Main Street Elementary, Goodwill Drive 2/13-15

 

Mount Madonna PreK-12, Winter Open House 2/21

 

Santa Cruz Waldorf School K - 8, Mornings In the Kindergarten 2/21


St. Francis Cabrini School, Free Dyslexia Presentation 2/26


Learn to Discover, STEM Workshops for Children

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THE PEARL
Master Class:

hands-on,
whole-brain
lit for teens

February 13 & 20
9am -12pm

The Art Factory
9099 Soquel, Aptos

Register Now!


Date Nights

(Holidays) ValentineCouple.jpg

 

Junebugs Gym
2nd Saturdays
5:45 - 8:45

 

Ohana Gym
3rd Saturday
5:30 - 8:30pm

 

FREE

ACTIVITIES

 

Parenting is "thrilling, exhausting, hilarious, fun, frustrating, rewarding.... and requires constant vigilance..."

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Tune up Your Parenting Skills


February 

Workshops for  Parents with Babies to Teens

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Happy Valentine's Day!
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Romance in the Redwoods Weekend
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  Romance in the Redwoods Weekend
State Park Big Basin
Date: 02/12/2017 at 11:30am
Details: Easy romantic hour walks
City: Boulder Creek Phone: (831) 338-8861 view all details >>
     
Clam Chowder Cook-Off
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  Clam Chowder Cook-Off
City of Santa Cruz
Date: Every day (Feb 25-Feb 26)
Details: Join the fun and excitement as talented Chefs from throughout the West Coast compete for the glory of the BEST CLAM CHOWDER!
Special Instructions: Each Tasting Kit Includes 6 taste tickets, spoon, cup, and a People's Choice ballot.
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Welcome Back Monarchs
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  Welcome Back Monarchs
State Park Natural Bridges
Date: 02/13/2016 from 11:00am to 4:00pm
Details: Habitat hikes, active games and crafts for children, face painting, butterfly garden tips, along with live music
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 423-4609 view all details >>
     
Trek to the Forbidden Sandhills
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  Trek to the Forbidden Sandhills
Quail Hollow Ranch
Date: Every Su and Tues (Apr 2-Apr 30) from 10:00am to 12:30pm
Ages: 16+
Details: Take a rare tour of the sandhills
City: Felton Phone: (831) 335-9348 view all details >>
     
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Love, Lust & Rock n' Roll
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  Love, Lust & Rock n' Roll
Santa Cruz County Symphony
Date: 06/03/2017 at 7:30pm
Ages: all
Details: From Frank Sinatra to Elton John, Led Zeppelin, and Queen, celebrate the hits from the '30s to the '90s.
City: Santa Cruz view all details >>
     
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LitWits Master Classes: My Antonia
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  LitWits Master Classes: My Antonia
LitWits Workshops
Date: Every Fri (Mar 13-Mar 20) from 9:00am to 12:00pm
Ages: High school
Details: Literature-based writing and art instruction for high schoolers
Special Instructions: Nov 14 and 21, 9am-12pm
City: Aptos Phone: (831) 247-0593 view all details >>
     
Animation, Technology, Robotics Classes for Kids
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  Animation, Technology, Robotics Classes for Kids
Learn to Discover
Date: Every weekday from 11:00am to 5:00pm
Ages: 4 - 18
Details: Animation, Technology & Robotics Classes for Kids
City: Capitola Phone: (831)662-9700 view all details >>
     
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Parenting Book Group
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  Parenting Book Group
Library Central
Date: The 3rd Wed of every month from 5:30pm to 6:30pm
Ages: 18yrs & up
Details: Meet with other parents to select and read parenting books
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831)420-5660 view all details >>
     
     
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