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  Santa Cruz Parent Santa Cruz, CA

October 3, 2013

Family Friendly Mole & Mariachi Festival

Suki: A Question of Scale

This Week
Mole & Mariachi Festival
Click to view our Business Directory
 

(Photos General) ChildrenOutdoors_HikinginRedwoods.jpgFall is in the air and with it comes visits to pumpkin patches, layered clothing, great hiking weather, a blanket on the bed, first report cards, parent-teacher conferences and plans for Halloween.  We have quite a lineup of harvest and Halloween events for both the little ones and for parents.  Plan ahead with our holiday section in the family events calendar and if we've missed your event post it now! Check back frequently because we continue to add events.

If you've ever tried making tortillas in your kitchen with children, you know where the flour goes!  We recommend going to the Mariachi and Mole Festival where children can make and eat their own tortillas. The entertainment is diverse and the cause is good.

Suki introduces us to The Big History Project, a history course that offers a stimulating macro perspective!  At the micro level MakersFactory offers a Circuits Club all about electronics, robotics, and microcontrollers. There is a wonderful, free, online Economics 101 class offered by the same group that introduced Constitution 101 last year.  It's our responsibility to educate ourselves as well as our children in all areas in order to make wise choices in our elected representatives.  Chartwell School is offering a workshop on how to support your child at home with 21st century technology.  Feeling a little stiff after all that studying? Head to Luma Yoga for their All Day Free First Friday.

Parmalee

  Family Friendly Mole & Mariachi Festival

by Bonny Hawley

(Photos General) MoleSauce.jpgFamiliar to many local 3rd and 4th graders as a field trip destination for learning about California history, Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park is offering something new for families this fall. On Saturday, October 5, from 11AM - 4PM, the Mission Adobe, located in downtown Santa Cruz, will be abuzz with the sights, sounds, smells and tastes of the first annual Mole & Mariachi festival, presented by Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks. This family-friendly event marks the beginning of a new chapter of the Mission's 222-year history.

The Mole & Mariachi Festival will be fun for the entire family. Guests can enjoy great local food, music, dancers, wine and beer, artisan crafts, and a silent auction - all to benefit Santa Cruz Mission Adobe State Historic Park. Children's activities will include tortilla making, bread-making, bubble making, rock crafts (painting), coloring and piñata fun, leather braiding, giant bubbles and las pirinolas (a traditional Mexican spinning game).

(Photos General) Mariachi_GrupoFolkloricaLosMejicasDeUCSC.jpgThe new festival highlights the comeback of Santa Cruz Mission Adobe State Historic Park, which was scheduled to close in 2012, but was saved by Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks, a non-profit organization dedicated to sustaining the legacy of Santa Cruz County's state parks and beaches. As Santa Cruz's "State Park downtown," the Mission Adobe is home to the oldest building in Santa Cruz. Built between 1822 and 1824 by local Ohlone and Yokuts Indians, the park's signature adobe is the only remaining structure from Mission Santa Cruz, founded in 1791.

Chefs from local restaurants such as Cafe Carlos, Chocolate, El Chipotle, El Palomar, Manuel's, My Mom's Mole, La Cabaña Taqueria and Tortilla Flats will prepare mole -- a traditional Mexican sauce, sometimes made using chocolate). To add to the fun, mole dishes will be judged by event attendees and by a panel of local celebrity judges.

Music and dance will be provided by Jalisco harpist William Faulkner, Trio Sol de Mexico, Mariachi Nuevo Jalisco, Estrellas de Esperanza Folkloric Group, and Groupo Folklorico Los Mejicas de UCSC.

The Mole & Mariachi Festival also heralds the return of a heritage-themed festival at the Mission. The last such event held at the Mission was the Mission Fiesta organized by the Adobe Coalition, the City of Santa Cruz and the California State Parks in the first week of October from 1980 through 1990, with smaller versions held in some years during the 1990s. Prior to the Mission Fiesta of the 1980s and 90s, a similar event was held at the site from the 1920s until the start of World War II. The first week of October is traditionally recognized as the birthday of Santa Cruz, the name given to a local creek (now Majors Creek) by the Portola expedition in 1769, then established as a mission in 1791 and later incorporated as a city in 1876.

(Photos General) Mariachi_EstrellasdeEsperanza.jpgAdmission to the Mole & Mariachi Festival is free with donations welcome. Mole tasting tickets and refreshments will be for sale. The event is a benefit for Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks in support of Mission restoration projects, educational programming for school children (including field trips for 3rd and 4th graders) and community cultural events at the park.

For more information about the Mole & Mariachi Festival, visit www.ThatsMyPark.org or www.facebook.com/events/415631128543444/. See you at the Mission!  Bonny Hawley serves as Executive Director of Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks. Learn more about Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks at ThatsMyPark.org or via Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Pinterest.

 

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  Suki: A Question of Scale

(Photos General) SukiWessling2013.jpg

This year my son and I decided to use a new and unusual history curriculum in our homeschool. The Big History Project is an attempt to reshape history to be meaningful to kids in the age of information. Rather than focusing just on the wars and conquests of the past, this curriculum attempts to help students understand a context for human history and make sense of their place in it.

One of the first concepts Big History covers is the question of scale. What does it mean to be human in an unfathomably huge and ancient universe? What is our role as a species? What is the importance of the individual and of our achievements?

Orion Nebula

[The Orion Nebula as seen by the Hubble Telescope]

I was thinking about how to represent this in a way that makes sense to me. I think a lot about what it means for a human consciousness to be trapped inside a biological body. Our consciousness is so vast-unlike (as far as we know) other animals, we can conceive of the universe. We can imagine a million years into the future or the past. We can study fossils and recreate the life they lived in words, static art, and film.

This vastness of our consciousness leads us, however, to have difficulty in placing our lives in context. Especially when we are children, what's happening in our heads naturally feels as if it's the center of things. One of the most fascinating parts of being a parent for me was watching my children define who they are within their own bodies.

First, you have a baby who has only recently separated from being part of someone else's body. The baby has a desperate need to be touched, as if that little consciousness can't yet conceive of being its own person. I remember with both of my babies the day they pulled their heads back from nursing and looked up at me with a new curiosity-Hello! Who are you? Who am I?

Then the baby starts to look and move around. Everything in the baby's life revolves around the baby. Having siblings perhaps makes it a little easier to sense that you're not the center of the universe, but your needs are still very selfish-throughout the toddler years and for some kids, well into childhood, there is a selfishness in fulfilling desires and satisfying needs. Babies don't ask, "Is it right that my mother has to drop everything to feed me?" Toddlers don't ask, "Is this a convenient time for me to throw a tantrum?"

I see the primary years as the time when kids are negotiating these questions: Where do I leave off and other people begin? What rights do other people have over me? What right do I have to influence and involve other people? They start to learn by trial and error (and sometimes with adult help!) how far their consciousness extends and how much they are able to influence the world around them. During this time, kids start to comprehend the true scale of things and realize that their consciousness, though vast, is just one of billions.

And then the teen years. So many parents have trouble dealing with this time when their kids seem to take antagonistic positions just to prove that they are separate, autonomous beings. I agree that it's hard, but it's also a thrill to watch a child fully separate and develop into his own person, to start to understand his own consciousness and what he wants to do in this frustratingly brief turn we all get. A successful end to the teen years, it seems to me, is one in which the new adult is prepared to harness the vast consciousness to pursue goals within the limits of her human life. I know that I didn't end my teens this way, but I hope I can guide my children as well as I can toward that understanding as their eventual goal.

If you're interested in exploring the topic of scale, here are some cool resources we've used:

Suki Wessling writes about parenting, education, gifted children, and homeschooling at Avant Parenting.

 

(Ads 2013) FriendsofParks_MoleandMariachi.jpg

  This Week

(Graphics) EventCalendar.jpg(Ads) SantaCruzParentFacebook.jpgBelow is only a partial list of upcoming events and activities so be sure to click on our EVENT CALENDAR so you do not miss anything >>

THE WEEKEND

 

 

School Corner

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Chartwell School K-12, Open House 10/8

 

Chartwell School K-12, Free Workshop - Technology 10/9

 

Gateway School K-8, Open House 10/16

 

Spring Hill School K-6, Invention Convention 10/15

Christine: Parasites Can Change Your Behavior!

(Photos General) Animal_CatandMouse.jpgThe parasite Toxoplasma gondii has been around for a long time. This parasite has some cool tricks. The only place it can reproduce is in the intestinal tract of cats. A cat will then pass the parasite in it's feces. The parasite will then spread to other animals. Pregnant women are told to avoid cleaning kitty litter boxes since this parasite can cause miscarriage.

Although this parasite spreads itself by leaving the body of the kitty host, it needs to find another host to reproduce. So it helps itself. A mice infected with the parasite loses its fear of cats. It gets eaten by a cat and then the parasite can reproduce.

This should scare you. A parasite gets into the body of another animal and completely changes the behavior in a way that gets its' host eaten.

Here is something scarier. After the parasite leaves the body (and the animal is still alive), the animal still has the altered behavior.

Lot of people have this parasite. Does it affect us?  ... find out more>>>>

 

Christine is a scientist and mom.  You can find more of her essays here.

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Harvest and Halloween Events

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Ask Nicole!

 

Dear Nicole,

My son just started middle school. It is so much different than elementary school! I feel like I'm constantly managing him to make sure he does his homework. Is there a role for me or should I back off and let him learn his lesson the hard way now that he is in middle school?

Charlene, Capitola

 

Dear Charlene,

Great question! Parents have an important role in helping their children develop good study habits, especially as children transition into middle school. Although many middle schoolers seek greater independence, it's still important to stay involved with your son's schoolwork. However, your role may change because middle school students are expected to take more responsibility for their homework. If this feels like a big leap for your son, you can teach him to set priorities, manage his time and make sure he understands his assignments before leaving school.

 

Here are a few things you can try to help: First, talk with him about his schedule and agree on when he'll do his homework each day. Second, ask your son to tell you about his homework assignments, due dates and his plan for getting it done. This teaches him the steps of planning and lets you see whether he understands his assignments. Third, check in on his progress. Help him adjust his plan if he's getting off track. When he shows initiative in starting homework and completing it on-time, be sure to acknowledge him.

 

Lastly, make sure your son knows you're there to help if he needs it. Good luck!

 

Nicole Young manages Santa Cruz County's Triple P - Positive Parenting Program, the world's leading positive parenting program. For more information, including classes and one-on-one meetings to help parents handle everyday parenting challenges, visit triplep.first5scc.org.

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 Mole & Mariachi Festival

(Photos General) SantaCruzMission_Today.jpgMole & Mariachi Festival
 
State Park Mission
Join us for a day of mole, mariachis & much, much more!
10/05/2013 from 11:00am to 5:00pm
Free
Santa Cruz Mission State Historic Park

(Photos General) TortillaGirl.jpg

Enjoy great local food, wine and beer, artisan crafts and fun for kids of all ages.
Vote for your favorite mole prepared for you by local chefs.  Mole is a traditional Mexican sauce, sometimes made using chocolate.

Silent Auction - A benefit for Friends of Santa Cruz State Parks in support of Santa Cruz Mission State   Historic Park.

Location: 144 School St, Santa Cruz Map Phone: (831) 425-5849 •website• 

Ole!
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Oktoberfest
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  Oktoberfest
Friends of Hospice
Date: 10/01/2016
Ages: All
Details: Family friendly event: food, music, a drawing for cash prizes, silent and live auctions
City: Scotts Valley Phone: (831) 430-3000 view all details >>
     
Holy Cross Fall Carnival
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  Holy Cross Fall Carnival
Holy Cross School
Date: 10/06/2013 from 11:00am to 3:00pm
Details: Admission is free, ice cream is free and the carnival is open to the public.
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