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Crazy Women Don’t Blog, But What Do They Do?

Hi everyone,

It’s true, crazy people don’t write blogs.  I’ve been crazy busy these last few days.  We are changing staff people at CCSS, and I have answered emails, and tied up loose ends all week in the interim.

loose ends

I got my signed contract for the History of Woodlake book yesterday, and I’ve also been scanning pictures like crazy, and posting them on three different Facebook Woodlake groups.

4th Grade Bike Trip 4_RT

The pictures won’t win any awards, but when I post them on FB, people recognize their tia or tio (aunt or uncle), and other family members, and it’s a lot of fun.  I taught the fourth grade bilingual class in Woodlake in the early 90s.  Aren’t they adorable?



4th Grade Bike Trip 1_RT

The pictures show the last bike trip we took before the helmet law for bicyclists went into effect around 1993 or 1994.


4th Grade Bike Trip 3_RT

The goal was to get to location that hadn’t been disturbed by settlement, where a tribe of the Wachumna Indians, a sub-tribe of  Yokuts Indians, lived in this area.  The Yokuts, yes the ‘s’ is part of the name, was one of the largest tribes in North America.  Food was plentiful, nutritious and easy to gather or hunt.  However, not even missionaries or Spanish soldiers ventured this far east more than once or twice.  Settlers from South Carolina discovered this area in 1853.


4th Grade Bike Trip 7_RT

Kids enjoyed walking through a sort-of-cave and looking at the paintings left by the Wachumna.


4th Grade Bike Trip 15_RT

The owner of this property, who is in his 80s, remembers seeing them down by Cottonwood Creek.  It’s dry most of the year.  It probably was then, too.


4th Grade Bike Trip 10_RT

Wachumna women harvested the many oak trees in the area. Women of all ages sat around the large grinding rock and ground acorns.  You can tell who sat where by the size of the holes in the rocks.  Grandmas had very deep holes.  You can clearly see the deep hole on the back right.



4th Grade Bike Trip 2_RT

Too soon it was time to bike back to school.

4th Grade Bike Trip 13_RT

Drivers followed in trucks or vans to pick up stray bikes and bikers that broke down along the way.


4th Grade Bike Trip 14_RT

I biked behind them taking pictures and hoping that no one would have problems.  And no one did.  🙂

33 replies »

  1. Great you landed the book contract. You seem to be having a lot of fun going down memory lane with those photos and interviews to get info for your book. Good luck on the book.


  2. Absolutely brilliant! Loved this post immensely and am so happy for you and the book contract. What a stupendous project. Ebullient smiles and congratulations to you. Cheers!

    Autumn Jade


    • Thanks Autty. Now the hard work begins. I don’t have pictures, and I’m learning that I don’t know much either. So in 6 months, I’ve got a lot to learn! 🙂 I just learned yesterday that in the 1880s the farmers in this area bought their orange trees in Los Angeles, and they had to ship them over the Ridge Route, a treacherous mountain road between the San Joaquin Valley and Los Angeles, by horse and buggy. With every few orange trees, they also got a free palm. That’s why so many of our orchard streets are lined with huge palm trees. 🙂


  3. Such sweet kids in these pics, Marsha. Sounds like you’re been so busy that you’ve been meeting yourself coming back. 🙂 Congrats on the contract. It should keep you out of mischief.


    • hehehe Is that really possible??? Keeping out of mischief. I have been busy, Sylvia. See how much I’ve posted recently? Yikes! I keep expecting my retired life to calm down some. 🙂


    • I agree. I’ve started accumulating sources for pictures. It will take quite a bit of research for me, since I’m not a native, but the people in the community are excited about the project, from what I’ve seen so far. It is generating a lot of interest from people I had never met. It’s amazing how many people from around the country have come out of the Woodwork to tell about Woodlake! 🙂 Thanks for the comment. I appreciate your support, and all your kind comments! 🙂


    • It was, MFR, even if it was 20 years ago. I taught with a great group of teachers. One of them grew up in the area and knew the best places. I was lucky enough to tag along on their great projects and field trips. One of my former forth grade students Facebooked me after I posted this article, and we chatted for about a half an hour on and off. She has 5 children now! Amazing!

      Hope you have a wonderful trip, MFR. I’m looking forward to hearing all about it. I’ve always wanted to go to Jerusalem.


    • They were. I have just been chatting with one of them on Facebook off and on for about the last half hour. She now has 5 children! Yikes! 🙂 She still looks adorable in her picture. It’s so good to hear from you Dianne. How are your books coming along? Are they out yet?


          • It’s someone who reads the story for flow and content – not so much editing, but they can edit (depending on their background and how qualified they are). My Beta reader is a comms and marketing specialist and a big book reader, so she’s pretty good! 😉


          • OK, I probably should have guessed that, or looked it up somewhere. Is she a personal friend, as well, or someone you found to hire. Are most beta readers friends, or professionals?


          • Some are friends and some are professionals, but this reader is a friend and also a fan so she does it because she likes to be the first to get her hands on my new stories (LOL). I do it as well, but usually charge a price if I don’t know the writer. Beta readers are fantastic and the more the merrier because they’ll pick up things you don’t want reviewers to pick up and write for all to see. Hopefully by the time the reviewers get the story it’s polished! 😀


          • I’d love to be a Beta reader for you! BTW, I ran into a couple of ladies at a hotel yesterday who know you. Well, they know your writing. We had a little chat as they waited for their ride back to Australia. How fun was that?


          • Oh – wow! That’s so exciting, I hope they had nice things to say 😉 Were they Australians? I find I have more people know me from other countries than my fellow Aussies do…





Hi, I'm Marsha Ingrao, a retired educator and wife of a retired realtor. My all-consuming hobby is blogging and it has changed my life. My friends live all over the world. In November 2020, we sold everything and retired to the mile-high desert of Prescott, AZ. We live less than five miles from the Granite Dells, four lakes, and hundreds of trails with our dog, Kalev, and two cats, Moji and Nutter Butter. Vince's sister came with us and lives close by. Every day is a new adventure.

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