Bishop’s Pumpkin Farm

In Wheatland. My first time and I was amazed. Barbara and I drove to E Nicolaus and parked at Sammie’s – a fast-food place. We rode through Nicolaus and Rio Oso, taking country roads through orchards and rice fields. We arrived at Bishop’s at about 10:30 to find the place already busy with cars, people, and school buses of children on field trips. The crowds on the weekend must be huge, the actual parking area was only 1/4 filled.

We avoided the kiosks selling merchandise, the hay rides, train ride, corn mazes (3), the petting zoo, and headed straight for Mrs B’s Bakery. Apple cake, pumpkin chocolate cake, caramel apples, and so much more – all in various sizes from individual to family size. This is one of the best reasons to ride a bike – you work hard pedaling the bike 20 miles, you get a delicious reward, then you ride 13 more back and work it off. A logical conclusion, right? This was my first time riding my e-bike a long way post-broken-wrist and I was a bit nervous. I was so glad Barbara came with me.

Pedal Up Natomas

Better on Bikes (BoB) evolved over the past few months to an in-person class called Pedal Up Natomas. Our first meeting was Saturday September 17 and I didn’t take a single picture. But Mellissa Meng did!

I am co-teaching with Deanna, a great LCI who frequently works for Jibe teaching Project Ride Smart and many other programs. (Aside: Deanna’s oldest daughter, of 3, just left for college at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo – the same college Thais attended 20+ years ago.) We have 12 participants – two of them, Brenda and Tracy, took BoB 4, which is great because they already have a lot of knowledge and can help others. Plus, two people from BoB1-Leo, and BoB2-Lennore volunteered. The first class focused on becoming ride ready. Our second meeting on September 24 included a 7-mile street ride with stops for teaching opportunities. Cheryl from BoB1 volunteered this meeting.

Your bike rides this week

Sunday September 18. Brenda, Jim, Lennore:

Monday September 19. Braving the wind, cold and rain, Jane and Cheryl:

Tuesday September 20. Jane, Cheryl, Kathy, Leo:

Brenda, Agueda, Lennore, me:

Thursday September 22. Terri:

Friday September 23. Dani, Cheryl, Kathy, Jane:

Saturday September 24. Dani, Kathy, Jane:

Merge 2022

Design firms from the Sacramento area compete to create stunning fashions out of architectural materials in an over-the-top fashion show, this year at the Sacramento Zoo.

All proceeds benefit the IIDA Sacramento Student Design Award. Thais’ company, LPAS, participated and I was on their team. Unfortunately, Thais couldn’t attend, but she did get me an extra ticket. The venue on a perfect fall evening with various animals making noises in the background:

One of my neighbors and friend I met through bicycling, Terri, came with me. We found a bench in a shady spot and claimed it. A perfect place to watch everyone check out the table with the design boards.

The LPAS design board:

Along came Marcie — I think she was the master designer and executor of the LPAS entry. Lots of people had input and prepared materials, but Marcie made it happen — and Sedonah, our model.

Marcie’s mother, Terri, joined us:

Terri, me, Terri

Some members of the LPAS team:

Jamie, Jenny, me, Shelly

A few of the 10 fashions.

This model took off her turtle-shell hat and attached it to a “torch” to make a parasol:

LPAS won the category of Most Wearable:

The winner from HY:

Such a fun event.

Coaching at NPE

A lot of kids at Natomas Park Elementary signed up for the second after-school coaching session for Project Ride Smart. Deanna and Pierson asked for another LCI – me – to help out on Thursday afternoon. About 20 kids – I think 15 were riding independently at the end of an hour. Success!

More Merge progress

By Sunday evening, the rest of the team had created this. My bodice piece was still needed. Marcie also created the beginnings of a wrap and headpiece. Our runway model is Sedonah:

By Wednesday, the embroidered bodice was attached and the headpiece had evolved.

A perfect fit! Well, of course.

Very nice, but the wrap had also evolved into something quite unique. This will make for a great reveal on the runway.

The gray “fur” section is crescent-shaped pieces of carpet glued to the base so they stand up plus there’s an ombre effect from front to back.

A completely different look with the “fur” section up.

And, the wrap could easily be reversed. Marcie pleated this “fabric” with gold strips stitched to the top edge of the pleat on this side.

I think we’re ready for Friday’s Merge fashion show at the Sacramento Zoo.


The team got together at Marcie’s Friday afternoon, but I had everything I needed for the embroidery planned for the bodice section at my house. Thais put yarn lines on the “fabric” (1/8″ thick and quite dense) for the parallel lines but I had to figure out how to create a chain that spread out evenly from front to back.

The red sparkly thread was quite frustrating and I broke quite a few needles trying to go through the fabric. I was getting nervous about being able to complete the project, things weren’t going well. Finally, LATE Friday night, I figured out I needed to make a hole in the fabric with a hammer and nail in order for the thread go through smoothly. While the red sparkly thread was not very cooperative (I hope never to work with this thread ever again), the black floss made up for my frustration. On Saturday morning (after teaching a morning bicycling class), I began making holes every 3/8-1/2″ along every line front and back. And I sacrificed my cutting board.

By Monday at noon, I was finished. Front

and back:

On Tuesday, I drove to Marcie’s with the finished pieces and stayed for a couple of hours to add some snaps to the fringe sections that need to cover the zipper.

The rest of the LPAS team has been working collaboratively on the rest of the garment. Next for me: finish the outfit I’m going to wear on Friday, specifically a pair of pants.

Coffee with friends

Beginning last Friday afternoon, I got overwhelmingly involved in part of the Merge project (next blog post) for five days. All the usual daily activities went on the back burner. So, before all that happened, on Friday morning, I had a great visit with Linda, Kathy, and Adrienne:

Volleyball birthday

Sophia’s St Ignatius volleyball team had a tournament on Sunday at Christian Brothers. I was there for the first game and the girls looked so good, they sort of crushed the other team in two quick sets.

They won the tournament. Sophia with Lily and Emma:

Sunday was also my birthday. We are all so busy that our September birthday family dinner will happen soon but not today. Lucy came by in the afternoon for a glass (or 2?) of champagne. Justin came by with flowers. Special thanks to all who sent a card, including – LOL – my doctor: