Commentary by Barbara Bullock-Wilson

For Christmas 2016, I gifted two of my great grandchildren Wynn Bullock calendars. To Cameron, who was nine, I gave the 2017 black-and-white calendar. And to Charlotte, age five, I gave the calendar with her great, great grandfather's Color Light Abstraction images.

Along with the calendars, the gifts included the telling of stories. I told Cam and Charli that each month I would write something about that month's image and that they could write me back about what the image meant to them.

Here is the exchange of emails Cam and I shared for the April image titled Edna and Barbara, Point Lobos, 1947.

Dearest Cam -

Do you have favorite places that fill your heart with joy? Special places where you like to celebrate happy occasions, where you go when you are sad or confused because being there always makes you feel better, where you feel alive and glowing and connected to the truest part of yourself.

Point Lobos State Reserve is one of those very special places for me. It is where your Great, Great Grandfather Wynn took the April image of me and my mother (your Great, Great Grammy Edna). Dad had a print of this image hanging in his darkroom and enjoyed looking at it whenever he worked there. He treasured it because it was a picture of two of the people he loved most in the world and because it expressed the wonder and joy we all shared being at Point Lobos. It was a very favorite place for each of us. And after I met your Great GrandDad, it became one of his very favorite places, too.

I have attached several pictures that were taken over the years at Point Lobos. My parents and I moved to the Monterey Peninsula in 1946 (71 years ago!) when I was nine months old. In exploring our new location, Dad and Mom discovered Point Lobos and it quickly became a place we would visit often for hikes, picnics, and Dad's picture taking. Edna with Barbara along Trail was taken shortly after we moved here while I was still a baby.

Barbara Celebrating her Second Birthday is a snapshot Mom took of my Grandpa Earle (Mom's father), Dad, and me. As you can see, I was thoroughly enjoying my birthday dessert! Barbara at The Slot was taken around the same time as the April image. I loved treasure-hunting for sea shells, pieces of driftwood, and interesting pebbles. Sometimes I would nestle into a sun-warmed rock while Dad photographed. I would breathe in the fresh, clean air with the salty tang of the sea mingling with the fragrance of sage and wild lilac. I would listen to the surf crashing over outcroppings of rock and wavelets whooshing across nearby pebbly beaches as White-crowned Sparrows warbled their lilting melody. It is an experience I still enjoy today.

When your Great GrandDad and I decided to get married, we asked Dad to take our Engagement picture at Point Lobos. We also had our wedding picnic there. In addition to being a wonderful place for celebrations, Point Lobos is great for observing wildlife. Among the animals on land are deer, bobcat, squirrels, and lizards. Among the birds, you can see golden eagles, ospreys, owls, peregrine falcons, egrets, and herons. And in the world of marine animals, there are sea otters, harbor seals, sea lions, and whales of many kinds - humpbacks, orcas, greys, and blues - the largest animal that has ever lived, even larger than the biggest dinosaurs! Gene and Barb Whale Watching at Pt. Lobos was taken during the wintertime when we were sighting grey whales during their southward migration from Alaska to Baja California in Mexico.

Cam - I hope someday I'll be able to share Point Lobos with you. Maybe during the summer or a shorter school vacation, you, Charli, and your parents can come here for a visit. I would like that very, very, very much!!!

With love bigger than a blue whale
- Great GrandBarb

Dear Great GrandBarb,

The place that makes me feel happy is anywhere that I can be around animals! This is because I enjoy looking at animals and they make me feel calm.

It sounds like Point Lobos is a perfect place for me to sit down and relax and watch all of the animals run, fly, and swim around! I'm especially excited about the blue whale and the peregrine falcon as well as the eagles, and also the bobcats! I would like to come visit you in California some time and see Point Lobos.

I enjoyed reading what you had to say about Point Lobos and looking at the pictures. It seems like a very special place! I especially liked the picture of you eating cake! I thought it was really funny!

I'm looking forward to learning about the May image, and soon after that the one for June!

I miss you very much and love you lots.

p class="text"> 

Text © 2017 Barbara Bullock-Wilson. All rights reserved.