Saturday, July 28, 2012

Our granddaughters

by aleks
SJG • 7/23/12 - our granddaughters - the entrance of  the Garden

On Monday Lynnda and I took our granddaughters - 2 y.o. (minus 2 days)  and 7 y.o. (minus 4 weeks)  to Seattle Japanese Garden:  Ellie has been coming here for years, and Sophie is just starting.  There is something really nice in the fact that Lynnda and I have become friends through our work as guides in SJG, and even nicer to be able to pass our love of the Garden to our grandkids.

SJG • 7/23/12 - new young friends walking up the hill together

I don't know what to write in this post, without breaking any confidentiality rules (which is why I chose not up-close pics, too - the face recognition software that both girls will grow up to live with... well, I'm not going to help with that),  but i just wanted to share this.

Maybe only, that I hope the girls will grow up as inspired by the Garden as their grandmothers are. Maybe some day they'll find some laughter here, or peace and consolation, or maybe they'll  dream their dreams here, or find a connection with something that really matters to them.

SJG • 7/23/12 - feeding koi

Ellie is keeping a haiku journal of her summer in seattle and this is what she created that day (I still write most of her compositions down, but not all anymore; she now can write some of it by herself):

Large flat rock
at entrance 
to magic garden

fuzzy, velvet 
on yakushima bush

Sophie drops koi-food,
I push it off the deck -
koi are happy


SJG • 7/23/12 - the Garden visit nearly ending....  see you later my childhood friend!

• • • • • • • • • 

A note about  yakushima rhododendron and teaching haiku to children:  I told Ellie that haiku is an easy way to make pictures with words: all you need to do is make up 3 lines about something  you want to remember - the shorter the lines, the better haiku. This year she learned to simplify her haiku by dropping unnecessary verbs and other grammatical 'luggage', and right now is learning the  concept of kigo (hint-words, denoting seasons).

Even though she only heard Lynnda say 'yakushima rhododendron' and wasn't sure if she wanted to even try to repeat it, she asked me to put the correct name in her haiku, because that is what she wanted to remember. She learned that trick last year while we travelled to Poland together: she wanted to remember correct names of places, rivers and castles we visited, so she asked me to spell them for her correctly in her haiku: she thought 'locking'  the names in haiku is a good way to preserve them,  and that when she re-reads her travel journals when she is older it will all make sense that way, because she trapped 'real' words which are on the maps and in dictionaries...

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Tanabata in kimonos

The following comment was left by Amanda of Seattle/Tacoma Kimono Club, and  it deserves its own post;  she made links to her photo-essay and blog-post about Tanabata Festival in SJG yesterday - THANK YOU, Amanda! aleks

SJG - 7/7/12 - Tanabata Festival;
pic stolen from Amanda's
photo-essay (see links)
by Amanada

I just wanted to say that some friends and I attended the tanabata festival yesterday, and we really enjoyed ourselves! Thank you for putting on the event, and thank you for having this blog! I love reading your blog about the garden, because I don't get to visit very often.

I wanted to share some of our photos we took: (facebook link, I hope it works.) I also wrote a little bit about our visit on my blog, though there are a little less photos:

Again, thanks for the event, and for providing such a beautiful oasis in this city!

SJG • 7/7/12 - Tanabata - go to Amanda's links to see more of pics she and her friends made...

• • • • • 

About Tanabata from wikipedia (go there for the rest of history, story, customs and more):  
Tanabata (七夕?, meaning "Evening of the seventh") is a Japanese star festival, originating from the Chinese Qixi Festival.[1] It celebrates the meeting of the deities Orihime and Hikoboshi (represented by the stars Vega and Altair respectively). According to legend, the Milky Way separates these lovers, and they are allowed to meet only once a year on the seventh day of the seventh lunar month of the lunisolar calendar. The date of Tanabata varies by region of the country, but the first festivities begin on July 7 of the Gregorian calendar. The celebration is held at various days between July and August. [...]

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Closures of Lake WA Blvd in July and August

by aleks, per Thomas and Myrna:

SJG • 6/20/12 -  a child in a hat looks at the rhodies...

hello, SJG volunteers, visitors and guests...

per Myrna:

Arboretum and Lake Washington Boulevard users should anticipate several all-day closures of Lake Washington Boulevard this summer from Foster Island Road on the north end to Arboretum Drive on south end of the park. Access to the Seattle Japanese Garden parking lot will be available from the south end of Lake Washington Boulevard during these closures

Lake Washington Boulevard will be closed to traffic:
·        Sunday, July 15 - Monday, July 16, 2012
·        Saturday, August 11 - Sunday August 12, 2012

* * * * *
per Thomas:

Dear Team:

I just received an update from WSDOT that they cannot close the Blvd. on Saturday July 14th.  The new schedule is as follows:

Sunday  July 15 –
Grind and pave from Interlaken to Boyer

Monday, July 16 –
Phase II of SCL pole placement from Interlaken to Foster Island
Install and bag signs for 2 crosswalks and speed cushions

Saturday, August 11 –
Raised crosswalk (note construction will need to start at 7:00 PM Friday – remove pavement and pour flat portion of x-walk)
Speed cushion
Phase I and III of SCL pole placement, this would require flaggers and change in traffic control plan
Possible spot paving by Madison, this would require flaggers and change in traffic control plan

Sunday,  August 12 –
Install street markings including, center striping of new pavement, sharrows, speed cushion markings, and 2 crosswalks
Steve Hoyos will coordinate with Steve Erickson; only concern is cure time needed for the raised crosswalk

September 8th and 9th -
This is a catch up weekend if the work does not all get done the other two weekends.

Please let me know what parks and U.W. crews are planning on working on each of the closure dates and I will add them into the descriptions.

SJG • 6/20/2012 - Japanese irises are out, too..