Like so many of you, I grew up with plenty of technology. Back then, the cutting-edge technology included a microwave, a personal radio, and finally when I was a teenager, a color TV and VCR. Today, technology includes teeny little cell phones, personal stereos and DVD players like the iTouch, and computers.
What will the technological changes mean for our kids? In the educational community, we talk about the multitasking kids do, and how they have become accustomed to immediate results, thanks to instant messaging and texting, real-time streaming data on TVs and computers, and the magnitudes of web links anyone can find on any topic thanks to Google. Recent studies have shown that in all of that multitasking, no one task is being done well, and student impatience is on the rise.
So should technology be abandoned? Or avoided? I think the best advice is age old: Everything in moderation. Technology can be a fantastic tool. Technology can teach us, help us, and shape our perception. Max is learning to use a mouse while he learns how to read, at starfall.com (thanks for the web site advice, Amy!). He has also begun playing the drums (we have a digital set at home dad’s a drummer) to his favorite iTouch songs. We laugh at silly cat videos on uTube and print out recipes to cook together. But we also practice leaving technology behind. We don’t need music when the birds are singing outside. And we certainly don’t need technology when we are hanging out with friends, reading books, or digging in the dirt.
We hope you are balancing enjoying the new trends of the generation and appreciating those eternal gifts of nature, with the help of Stroller Hikes.
Here are this week’s events:
Monday, August 31st at 10 am we’ll meet at John W Christian Greenbelt. Amy L. and little Adelina will lead a speed walk / jog along the lovely wide, paved greenbelt in Sunnyvale and Santa Clara. Dogs allowed but be sure they can manage on a faster-paced walk/run. We’ll take a break around the halfway point for the trip, to play at the large playground for toddlers, along the greenbelt. Meet at the pedestrian bridge on Ahwanee Avenue and San Junipero Drive (the bridge is just NW of San Junipero Dr.). Here is a Mapquest Map of the Starting Location (http://www.mapquest.com/maps/Ahwanee+Ave+and+San+Junipero+Dr+Sunnyvale+CA/). For more information about the trail, see the John W Christian Greenbelt Webpage (http://www.strollerhikes.com/Hikes/GreenbeltSunnyvale/GreenbeltSunnyvale.html). If you’re running late, call Amy at 650-207-6556.
Tuesday, September 1st at 8:30 am Loren and little Angelo will lead a mellow stroller jog around Almaden Lake and down Los Alamitos Trail. Meet at the water dragon by the big playground near the bathrooms and swimming beach in the main parking lot near the intersection of Coleman Avenue and Almaden Expressway. No dogs allowed! Jogging strollers are best, but this is an entirely paved trail, so smaller-wheeled strollers are also OK. Walkers always welcome! For more information about the area or directions, see The Los Alamitos Creek Trail Webpage (http://www.strollerhikes.com/Hikes/LosAlamitos/LosAlamitos.html). If you’re running late, call Loren at 831-227-6737.
Tuesday, September 1st at 2 pm join Amy B. and little James and Sadie for a hike down Stevens Creek Trail, beginning from Easy Street’s Creekside Park in Mountain View. Any stroller or carrier will work; the path is a lovely two-lane paved one. We’ll have the option of walking towards the bay or towards the hills (the trail has been extended through Mountain View). For the bay direction, the first and last quarter of this hike is well shaded, and we hope to have some bay breezes, in case it’s warm. For the hill direction, the trail is shaded for the majority of the hike. For more information about the trail or directions, see The Stevens Creek Trail Webpage (http://www.strollerhikes.com/Hikes/StevensCreekTrail/StevensCreekTrail.html). If you’re running late, call Amy at 408-368-7161.
Wednesday, September 2nd at 9:45 am we’ll hike at Rancho San Antonio in Cupertino/Los Altos Hills. We’ll do an almost entirely paved, flat path going to the farm, and possibly go past it. The road is perfect for trikes or bikes, if toddlers or young children want to ride. Any baby transport will work. Meet at the main lower parking lot at the water fountain in front of the bathrooms(just past the entrance, turn right, then follow the road until it ends). For more information or directions, see the Rancho San Antonio Page (http://www.strollerhikes.com/Hikes/RanchoSanAntonio/ranchoSanAntonio.html). Sorry, dogs not allowed. This hike is at least half shaded. Lisa and little Samuel will lead this hike. If you’re running late, call Lisa at 650-892-8678.
Thursday, September 3rd at 4:30 pm join Debbie and little Max for a Toddler Trek at Ed Levin County Park in Milpitas. We’ll encourage toddlers to run, walk, and explore as we hike around Spring Valley Pond along Nature Trail. We’ll talk about fishing and the role of fish in this ecosystem, where ducks and zooplankton are prevalent. To get there, take Hwy 680 East and exit at Calaveras Road, then follow signs to the park. Park at the far end of the parking lot to the right of the ranger office/visitor center, then meet near the trailhead for Nature Trail. Bring a few dollars to pay for parking. If you are running late, call Debbie at 650-776-1082. This is a Santa Clara County Healthy Trails (http://www.parkhere.org/) outing.
Labor Day Weekend, September 5th – 7th, come out for Stroller Hikes’ third annual camping trip, which is a Fund Raiser for Stroller Hikes this year. This year’s site is in beautiful Soquel, just a few minutes from the beach, in the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Our venue is in wonderful woods with the shallow Soquel Creek nearby, for kids to play in. This is a fee-based activity, requiring you to reserve a spot for your family ($15 per family per night). You are welcome to come for one or all days; camp opens on Saturday around noon and closes on Monday afternoon. Contact Debbie Frazier at admin@… if you are interested in joining us you must contact us by Sunday August 30th to reserve your spot!
Labor Day Weekend, September 5th – 7th, come support Kings Mountain community at their Annual Kings Mountain Art Fair from 10 am to 5 pm each day. According to Stroller Hiker Kathleen: “The 46th Annual Kings Mountain Art Fair features 160 artists in a family-friendly redwood forest setting. In Kiddie Hollow, children of all ages can make their own art at the supervised booths, including spin, string, straw, and glitter art, among other activities. There is a nominal fee for many of these activities ($3 for 12 tickets, $5 for 24). There’s plenty of free stuff, too, including the reading corner and an authentic Native American teepee to explore. Parent’s Retreat overlooks Kiddie Hollow, so the adults can relax while the children play. Kiddie Hollow is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Proceeds from the fair benefit the KM Volunteer Fire Brigade and the KM Elementary School. For information, see The Kings Mountain Fair Webpage (http://www.kingsmountainartfair.org/pressroom/).
-Debbie and little Max