Tag Archives: Pete

Thanksgiving in Southern CA

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For the first time in 15 years, our John and I were guests for Thanksgiving. Usually, we host the annual feast at our house in San Jose but my brother Pete and his wife Julie volunteered. After work on Wednesday, Paul and John and I drove from the San Francisco Bay Area to La Crescenta in the mountains overlooking Los Angeles, arriving at about 1 am after 335 miles of heavy traffic. We enjoyed a lovely Thanksgiving Thursday with family, then John and Paul drove home yesterday.  Paul has homework and John’s storage software project is in its final test phases, so they had to go back.

I am staying the weekend for more family visit time. Last night, we enjoyed a special tour of the excellent Huntington exhibit “Face to Face: Flanders, Florence, and Renaissance Painting” . The Co-Curator Catherine Hess gave us a tour of the project she worked for five years to create. She explained how the rich of early Renaissance Florence who wanted portraits and opulent religious images sought them from Flemish painters such as Jan van Eyck, Rogier van der Weyden, and Hans Memling, who were developing a new naturalistic style of oil painting. Florentine painters such as Domenico Ghirlandaio (and his student Michelangelo) were inspired to develop the style even further. The small image “Christ Blessing” (dated 1481) by Hans Memling was for me the best of a remarkably-fine show: the direct gaze combined with left hand casually resting on the painting’s edge made the portrait seem alive.

Today, after my nephew Daniel cooked breakfast, I was a Soccer Aunt, driving my niece Lynda to the fifth game of her AYSO Turkey Tournament weekend. Tonight, Pete and Julie have a Charades game night planned. Busy weekend!

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Images Copyright 2013 by Katy Dickinson

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Lair of the Golden Bear, 9th Week

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School start dates keep moving earlier, so over our 21 summers at the University of California at Berkeley family camp, the Lair of the Golden Bear, we have moved in Camp Blue from 12th week to 11th to 10th and this year, to 9th week. The transition to 9th week meant a new location for our three tents: we are now creekside.  Creekside is farther from the bathrooms but has a prettier view.

9th week is both the same and different from 10th. We were too early to see the annual Perseid Meteor Shower and we missed Ed’s 10th week Margarita Party but 9th week features a Pirate Party and there is more water in the rivers. This year, we went rafting on the Stanislaus River. The rapids were no rougher than Class 2 but we enjoyed our day out of camp. We also drove to the Trail of the Gargoyles to see the sunset – made very colorful by a forest fire about twenty miles away.

We attended one of the talks (Dr. Larry Michalak on “Tunisia and the Arab Spring”), danced during Disco Bingo, celebrated Jessica and Matthew’s 2nd wedding anniversary and Paul’s 21st birthday with a Lair Cake, enjoyed arts and crafts, and played board games for many hours in the lodge.  My brother Pete and his wife Julie went running to Pinecrest Lake early every morning but most of us slept in until the first breakfast bell.

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Images Copyright 2013 by Katy Dickinson

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Creekmore Family Reunion, Knoxville Tennessee

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After our visit to Loon Lake, Wisconsin, with the Plocher family last week, John and I flew to Knoxville, Tennessee, for a reunion of my Creekmore relations. My mother, Eleanor Creekmore Dickinson, was born and raised at 1007 Circle Park in Knoxville, spending summers at our Elkmont family cabin in the Great Smoky Mountains. My brothers and I and our cousins and friends also spent many happy childhood weeks at the cabin and nearby swimming hole. My brother Mark is the oldest of our generation and I am next – we have a first cousin who is twenty years younger. More Elkmont history and photos are in my Elkmont, Tennesee 2011 blog entry.

It was delightful to get together with my mother and brothers, aunts and uncles, cousins and nieces and nephews. My mother, Mark, Jessica and Matthew met us in Knoxville.  Unfortunately, Paul could not come because of final exams at Foothill College. My brother Pete was able to bring his whole family.

We went as a group to see “Dear Lodge” – the Creekmore’s Elkmont Cabin #6, now part of the “Elkmont Emergency Stabilization Project” of the US National Park Service’s “Elkmont Historic District: Appalachian Club”. Despite the many “US Property – No Trespassing” signs, the cabin’s back door was flat on the kitchen floor, plus a window and the front door of the cabin were open. However, we were happy that the holes in the floor my daughter saw during her visit in 2008 have been repaired.

We had a big family dinner at Latitude 35 in Knoxville after visiting the mountains.  Part of the fun of a reunion is telling funny stories on each other.  Here is one I shared:

When my brothers and cousins and I were little, our mothers, aunts, and uncles would sometimes take us to a drive-in at night, usually to see a Godzilla monster movie. There would be two cars: the adults would put us kids in one and lock themselves in the other so that they could watch the movie and eat their popcorn in peace. They rolled the windows down just enough to let in the movie speaker and some air. Of course, we kids would quietly get out of our car to sit on the hood or catch frogs in the grass. One evening, we had an idea. We snuck up on the grown-ups’ car and pushed some of our frogs into the window opening. Unfortunately, one of the frogs dropped into my Aunt Mary’s soda and then immediately jumped down the front of her blouse. The resulting commotion in the adult car was  spectacularly noisy. We got in big trouble (but it was worth it!).

Yesterday, John and my mother and I went to service at St. John’s Episcopal Cathedral where my parents were married in 1952. Then, we visited the family graves at Highland Memorial Cemetery on the way to the airport.

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Images Copyright 2013 by Katy Dickinson

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Big Southern California Wedding

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My brother Pete Dickinson married Julie Gutman last weekend at a big wedding in Southern California. The guests included dignitaries and creative folks and vast numbers of lawyers (since both Pete and Julie are in that line of work) in addition to family. Most of the joyous event was held at the Terranea Resort in a lovely coastal setting.

Except for the bride in white, the wedding party wore red and black – in honor of my father Wade Dickinson who passed away a year ago (his favorite color was red). The mothers of the bride and groom had a lovely time together, surrounded by all of their children and grandchildren.  The Mayor of Los Angeles and the whole City Council signed a beautiful certificate of congratulations and best wishes. California Speaker of the Assembly John Perez participated in the ceremony, and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was a guest. My daughter Jessica sang a song to the couple.

The less extroverted guests retreated into corners to commune with their smart phones and avoid all of the excitement. A good time was had by all.

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Images Copyright 2012 by Katy Dickinson

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