Bankhead Adventures

28 October 2020

COVID-19 Chronicles, Part 10 (Backpacking in Yosemite)

During a pandemic is an excellent time to visit Yosemite. Normally we avoid Yosemite during the summer because it is so crowded, but since the park was limiting guests, we snagged some permits and fulfilled a long-awaited dream of taking the children on a proper backpacking trip. We saw a total of 4 people the whole time.

The children were so tough! They carried their own stuff, and aside from one hour of total family meltdown on Day 4, there was surprisingly little complaining. Our reward was pristine lakes, rows and rows of rugged peaks, bear sightings, and refreshing waterfalls.

Tenaya Lake was our bath on either end of our time in the backcountry.

Entering the wilderness

We carefully weighed and arranged our loads.

This was our living room for 3 days

Top of Polly Dome

Bangers and mash for dinner

Hot day, frigid waterfall

Studying the map is very important

05 August 2020

COVID-19 Chronicles, Part 9 (Independence Day)

To celebrate the 4th of July we hosted a Grand Reopening of the Swamp Hut. Less than two years after the whole thing went up in flames, we are back in business! Ping-pong, kayaking, waterskiing, lego-building, Hamilton-watching, rollerblading, and the thrill of being with people we love made this a hugely successful celebration. We had an hour-long conference call beforehand to work out everyone's COVID-19 risk tolerances and to make decisions about how to make this event work, and ultimately it was a huge success, complete with a musical tribute to the old Swamp Hut, written and performed by Paul's brothers.
Cousin card games

Watching Hamilton

So many boys in the boat

4th of July dinner

23 July 2020

COVID-19 Chronicles Part 8 (More birthdays)

While the world continued to fret about coronavirus, the younger Bankheads turned 7 and 9. Amos's main birthday requests were swimming, an unending supply of watermelon, and lemon pie, which we happily provided for him and a gaggle of cousins. Two days later the same cousins showed up again to provide birthday magic for Miles, who requested a monster cake and Jackbox games. Having nearby cousins in our quarantine circle hugely improves birthday celebrations.

15 July 2020

COVID-19 Chronicles Part 7 (Chalk Coral Reef)

After rain washed away the circus on our front sidewalk, we replaced it with a coral reef.

21 May 2020

COVID-19 Chronicles Part 6 (Chalk Circus)

Our elementary school community put together a map of houses that had cool sidewalk chalk. This was our contribution.
Animals and a juggling clown
Balloons at the entrance

Hot air balloon, Ferris wheel, calliope, ice cream stand

A lion, our school's mascot

18 April 2020

COVID-19 Chronicles Part 5 (Outside the House)

Although many people are having a rough time being stuck inside, we're lucky enough to spend a lot of our quarantine time outside in our yard and around the neighborhood.
The children enjoy putting their father in a wagon and going for a stroll.

We purchased a ping pong table to help with Paul's brain therapy.
Sadie's teacher lives around the corner and has created a library on her front porch, so Sadie has figured out how to attach large stacks of books to her bike rack.
Sadie manages her fairy garden.

12 April 2020

COVID-19 Chronicles Part 4 (Around the house)

Some snapshots of daily life:
James wears his snuggie more often than not

Miles gets creative in his wardrobe

Amos harvests lemons from the yard and makes lemonade

Sadie sorts all the pennies by year

11 April 2020

COVID-19 Chronicles Part 3 (Birthdays)

We've now celebrated two birthdays in lockdown. For Sadie's birthday, grandma designed a sign on our front gate directing passersby to sing Happy Birthday. While Sadie did her school work on the front porch, dozens of neighbors and friends stopped to wish her well. A few neighbors we've never met even brought gifts. That was followed by a lemon-raspberry cake and Jackbox games over video chat with friends across the Bay Area and across the country.

James, who requested to NOT have strangers publicly sing to him, commemorated his birthday with a chocolate chocolate chip cake and a surprisingly cool laser pointer.