Around the Bay in LPA
Official newsletter of the
San Francisco Bay Area Chapter
Little People of America
Vol. 11, No. 2 Chapter founded in 1962 Summer 2008
San Francisco Bay Area Chapter various members of the Contractor=s Safety
Receives Very Large Donation Forum were applauding the event.
By Jon Welch
It was an absolutely incredible evening. A
Thanks to the generosity of members of the sincere and heartfelt thanks to Al and Cindy
Contractors Safety Forum, the San Francisco VanNieuwburg and the members of the
Bay Area Chapter of LPA received a large Contractor=s Safety Forum for your
donation from the proceeds of a recent charity overwhelming generosity. Many thanks also to
golf tournament. Longtime SFBAC member Yvette, Jim, and Yvonne Farrington for the
Yvette Farrington=s uncle Al VanNieuwburg kindness of your family and for including LPA
organizes the golf tournament each year which is in this monumental event. □
comprised of many different contracting
companies working with Valero Petroleum
Company in Benicia.
On Friday, June 20th, with temperatures hovering
above 100 degrees, roughly 200 golfers played
on two different courses in Fairfield and
Vacaville. Each of the many companies
involved donate prizes for the raffle and also
contribute large donations of money that are
given away to different charities. This year, the
tournament raised a record $45,000 which was
given away to six different organizations. Al
decided that he wanted to do something very
special for his niece and dedicated a portion of
the proceeds to SFBAC. Al VanNieuwburg, top row second from left; Jon and
Sonia Welch, Yvette Farrington, bottom row.
At a dinner that was held after the tournament, I
was asked to accept the donation to the chapter. 2008 Chapter Calendar
The Farrington family invited Sonia and me to
sit at a table with them. A very nice introduction June 21-2--National Conference, Detroit.
about LPA preceded our invitation to come up July 25, 26, 27--Samuel P. Taylor Camping. Hosted by
and accept the donation. As I walked up to the the families of Spencer Uniacke and Dylan Herschkorn.
front of the room with speech in hand, I was August 9–14 --Painted Turtle Camp, Lake Hughes.
given a large cardboard replica of the actual Sept 6th--Pool Party in Larkspur. Hosted by the family
check. After it was announced the amount we of Spencer Uniacke.
had received, and I had seen it for myself, I was October 4th--Pumpkin Patch at Countryside Farm,
speechless. The San Francisco Bay Area Lodi. Hosted by Linda Dominguez/Gerrie Kay.
Chapter received a check for $7,000.00. As I October 24-26th--Painted Turtle Skeletal Dysplasia
pulled myself together to accept the check, Family Weekend, Lake Hughes.
Nov. 1st--Bringing in the Holiday Party in Campbell.
Hosted by the family of Gavin Su.
Dec.--Christmas parties to be determined.
President's View parts of the world live and to learn their cultures
By Ethan Crough first hand. She and her parents are very brave!
Thanks to everyone for getting out another
newsletter for the San Francisco Bay Area
Chapter! It takes the ability to make the time for
volunteering in order for our chapter to keep
going and so to all the tireless volunteers we
have, please keep up the great work.
I hope you had a great spring and are looking
forward to a fun summer! We are in full swing
and have some great events planned for our
chapter. We had some good get togethers this
spring for a lot of different chapter members.
We are ready to move into our some of our
traditional SFBAC summer events, with a new
twist here and there!
As some of you may have seen in the most
recent issue of LPA Today, I am running for the
national office of Vice President of Membership
for LPA. If I am elected, my term will start this
summer while Emily, Iris, and I are in Detroit.
Unfortunately, that means my duties as chapter After
president will have to be given to another willing returning from Europe, Lucy will volunteer at
and able volunteer. Jon Welch has Painted Turtle Camp. Look for her among the
graciously agreed to step in as acting president, camp councilors, but don’t give her a hard time!
though I'm sure he'd love some volunteers to
help him out. If you have ever thought about Ben will also work at a camp this summer. He
getting involved, please do! will be at Camp Winnarainbow, a circus
performing camp run by Wavy Gravy. Alright
In the meantime, I'll be here to help with the Ben, expect us to come calling the next time we
transition and to do whatever I can to help the need entertainment for the children’s room at
chapter run smoothly. Thanks for having me be conference!
a part of it.
This fall, Lucy will attend the University of
I look forward to working with you all on a new California at Berkeley because of its excellent
national level. engineering program. Ben will attend Foothill
College while he decides what to major in, “the
As always please feel free to contact me with any arts, computer programming or graphics,
ideas, concerns, or issues. □ animals, or child care/psychiatry (you can
see why I'm a wee bit indecisive in how those
could intermingle.)” We are fortunate that both
Two Successful Graduates Lucy and Ben will still be around the bay area.
Congratulations to Lucy Williams and Ben Good luck in this summer and in college! □
Bromley-Coolidge for graduating from high
school. Lucy plans to travel alone to Europe this
summer, visiting London, Paris, Dublin, and
Italy. She is eager to see how people in other
Spring Fling at the Garrett’s
By Caroline Jones
We all had such fun at the Garrett Family's
annual spring party! We were joined by some of
our newest members, Abigail Parkhurst, her
brother Ben and parents Jennifer and Robert, as
well as Peyton, Julie and Steve Alexander. And
we were thrilled to meet Jon and Sonia Welch's
adorable son Garrett. Congratulations!
Charlotte Boyle helps Ben Greenbaum
What a perfect day for a picnic. The Stronach-
Greenbaums reserved a spot for our annual
picnic. Although near our usual spot, it seemed
a world away. Tucked into a little ravine, the
“Do we put the eggs in or dump them out?” Peyton Big Leaf picnic area gave us the feeling of
camping. Of course, the tents Josh and Keren set
After a delicious meal we all headed off to a up helped the camping ambiance. Keren
beautiful park for the Easter egg hunt which was provided great crafts for the kids. Grace and
great fun. The kids who had arrived first and Talia made lovely flower crowns, while Gavin
claimed most of the loot were easily convinced and Trey covered their crowns with swords and
to re-hide some eggs for the younger kids. A
new game of finding and re-hiding was hatched,
and they all wound up having a great time.
Many thanks to the whole Garrett family for
opening their lovely home and extending such a
warm welcome to us all.□
Gavin and Talia make crowns
We had a different crowd this picnic. For years,
I’ve envied the 9-10 year old crowd of boys who
run around our events. Well, Tilden had more
than half a dozen first and second grade boys.
Cassie Nielson’s grandparents brought foam
swords, and you should have seen the war!
A band in the making!
Between water guns and swords, not a soul was Achieving the proper lie angle on your irons may
left unscathed. Even Cassie joined in the melee, be the most critical issue for which a custom
while Charlotte Boyle tried her best to shoot a club maker can help a little person in arriving at
water gun. Watch out boys, she’ll have quite an a custom set of clubs. Lie angle refers to
aim in a few years! whether, when you stand over the ball ready to
Thanks again to the families of Charlotte Boyle swing, the toe (farthest from the shaft) of your
and Talia Greenbaum for a wonderful picnic.□ club too high or too low. Lie angle is critical to
your aim, particularly from the 8 iron and higher,
Why Custom Fitted Golf Clubs? and a club maker will have a bending machine to
By Don Davidson make the adjustments needed to bring your irons
into correct lie angles based on your own
If your stature is particular swing.
not what is known
as “average,” and
you want to learn
how to play golf,
you are not going
to be able to play
with regular clubs.
I know because I
am much taller
than average, and
I need clubs long
enough to allow
me to make a
. I became interested in custom club fitting for
my own personal reasons, but I have learned that
the most important outcome in custom-club
making is comfort; when standing over the ball
ready to swing, are you confident in your clubs? Melanie
Custom made clubs should feel comfortable in My friend Willem came to me because he
your hands and in your mind because you have needed someone to make a set of clubs which
been directly involved in the development of the would put him in the best position to compete as
final product. a member of his high school golf team. He was
using an old set of irons (known as “blades”:
Golf is a tough enough sport to learn and to play very difficult to hit consistently) with steel shafts
consistently without having clubs which are right which had been merely cut to size without
for you. Custom golf clubs allow you to choose allowing for flex and lie angle. I recommended
the club heads, shafts, and grips which, when graphite shafts to give him more flex to generate
assembled, are made to your size and what feels more club head speed and thereby hit the ball
best to you. All golfers want to hit the ball a long higher and farther. I recommended a particular
way. Although consistency is more important set or irons because they were specially designed
than distance, a little person will be better served to be bent as much as 10 degrees (most irons can
using graphite shafts instead of steel to provide only be bent about 2 degrees).
the best chance of hitting the ball higher and
farther. After assembling the irons, we analyzed lie
angles of each club based on his swing and
where he struck the ball. Bending the irons was
definitely necessary until all clubs were correctly Thank you to Linda Peterson for putting together
dialed in. Willem chose his grips from a large the gift bags and together with Tony Winkelman
selection of styles and colors. In the end, his new for hosting the BBQ after the round.
custom set of irons matched his high school
colors: red and black! Remember that these golf tournaments are open
to all skill level of golfers, your friends, your
There are two other reasons to consider a custom relatives, anyone who wants to play. The
club maker: price and personal attention. You fundraiser for DAAA and the chapter will be in
may be able to go to a golf store and have some the fall and the one in the spring is good
clubs made for you, but if you want Nike or practice.
Calloway or Cleveland clubs, you will pay more.
If you need to have your clubs adjusted, re- Hope to see you come out to play this fall at the
gripped, or repaired, your custom club maker regional!
will be there for you.□
Wild Wind and Great Golf for the Spring Bay
Area Golf Tournament
By Ethan Crough
Thanks to all of you for coming out to Bodega
Bay for the tournament! We all braved the 30
mph winds and sun to make some great shots out
on the golf course. This is the second
tournament for the San Francisco Bay Area
Chapter. We are going to try and have two per
Out of the field of seventeen players,
congratulations go to Melanie Leyva, Carlos
Leyva, and Johnny Leyva for posting the lowest
score of 68 (-2 under par) to be the winning
team. We'll have to look out for them at the next
Willem Winkelman, Javier Leyva, and Chris
Colin and Joe Miller
Sparrow came in second with a score of 73.
Congratulations also go to Joe Miller, winner of
the closest to pin contest! He was within 13 feet
of a hole-in-one. Here's to seeing his son Colin
coming out to play in the next few years.
We also had a longest drive competition in the
LP and TP flight which was won by Willem
Winkelman and Ron Murphy, respectively. We
all had to keep it low hitting it into such a
The Importance of Customized Golf
By Willem Winkelman
When I started my golf career, a mere 12 months
ago, I was playing with a set of cut down steel
shafted clubs. They were very stiff and hard to
hit. They were all right, but they wouldn’t cut it
for me. That’s when I met Don Davison, Don
makes custom golf clubs and I asked him to
make a set for me. He worked with me on what
kind of shafts that will work best for me, based
on my swing speed, and the club heads that will
do what I need them to do. The shafts are really
flexible and the club heads are easy to hit and the
iron heads can tilt 10° each way to even out the
lie angle, for all the non-golfers that is how the
club sits on the ground. That will allow me to
make a more solid shot. With the shafts he cut
from each side of the shaft to keep some of the
flex, instead of taking it all off one end. With
custom-built clubs there is a variety of options
for your clubs, more options than if you were to
buy a set of clubs from a golf store. My new
clubs have definitely made a difference in my
golf game. From shooting in the high 110’s, I am
now shooting in the low 90’s. I now am on the
traveling golf team at my school in the number 5
spot playing like I should be in the number 3
spot. I can hit the ball farther than I could before
and more accurately. Without them I wouldn’t be
playing as well as I do now. □
Tween Pool Party an Interesting Experiment
By Shari Weiser
The tween pool party was a nice experience.
Finn Martinez-Owen, Cassie Neilson, Ben Foos
and Spencer Uniacke enjoyed the day poolside,
swimming and creating exotic smoothie
creations. The day felt kicked back, and the
foursome had an opportunity to deepen their
friendships. Given the long distances everyone
drove, we grown-ups hung around and got a
chance to bond as well. On September 6th we
will be hosting another pool party. Everyone is
invited and I hope lots of you can come.□
ANNUAL SPORTS DAY, ANOTHER
By Jon Welch
A great time was had by all at the annual SFBAC
Sports Day and Swim Party held at Amador
Valley Community Park in Pleasanton. A
sizeable group of kids and adults enjoyed what
turned out to be a warm sunny day. The event
was hosted was the Foos family, and Joe Foos
organized a couple of different games and relays
that all of the kids participated in. Playing with
frisbees and soccer balls rounded out the rest of
the activities for the first part of the afternoon.
On the sidelines of all the activity, families lined
the lawn with chairs and blankets to set up picnic
lunches. This provided a great opportunity to
meet some of the newer members of our chapter
and to catch up with others that hadn’t been seen
for a while. Joe Foos teaches soccer
After the field activities were over, the majority
of the group walked over to the swimming pool One Achievement, Team Effort
complex next door. It was a perfect day for
swimming, and most everyone took advantage of By Bob Padecky
the opportunity to cool off. Thank you very Democrat Columnist
much to the Foos family for once again hosting a Published: Sunday, March 9, 2008
very successful Sports Day.□
SEBASTOPOL- Put Chris Sparrow in a
convertible, alone, top-down, hands up. That's
what city officials proposed. Make Chris part of
this city's Apple Blossom Festival on April 26.
Put him in the parade. He'd be a float unto
himself. By then everyone here would have
heard the story about Chris, sinking that free
throw against Healdsburg in February.
By April 26, everyone would know about that
night and what happened at Analy High School
the next week and the telling and re-telling of it
would have created such momentum, shoot,
Chris would have to be in that car.
Teachers don't usually ask students for their
autographs, but four of them at Analy asked
Chris for his. High school kids don't usually ask
another high school kid for his autograph, but
they did this time. Students don't stop what they
are doing in class and applaud another kid, but
that's exactly what they did in shop and a studies a second skin. "There's not a day that goes by,"
class… she said, "that I don't wish I was taller."
Ridicule? Yes, she knows ridicule. When she
It seemed the right thing to do, putting 4-foot-6 was at UC Berkeley on her way to a degree in
Chris Sparrow in a car, the tiny high school social science, an athlete approached her and
senior who played in his first and only high said, "Hot damn, they are making Barbies now
school basketball game, and scored that single that walk and talk!" "I thought it was hilarious,"
point to a roar that, say the people around here, she said. And yes, it helps to have a tough hide
still hasn't subsided. How could one refuse that? if you are a small person. …
Laura and Ron Sparrow could, and did. They At nine months Chris was diagnosed with
refused the honor. "It wasn't just about Chris," hypochondroplasia, a form of short-limbed
said Laura, an advertising director for a San dwarfism. She had suspected as early as the
Francisco department store. It was Analy's week after his birth that Chris was a dwarf, even
athletic director, the two head coaches, the though his birth dimensions were 6 pounds, 3
players from both teams, and, finally, a game ounces and 19 inches long. But she kept out hope
official, who got Chris to the foul line. A lot of that her suspicions were wrong. When they
people put Chris Sparrow at the line on Feb. 14 - weren't, the affect on her was profound. "I
- and some of them weren't even in the Analy definitely mourned the child I thought I had,"
gym. Laura said. …
"For all those guys who picked on me," Chris After a time, only one solution made sense, one
said, "you never kept me down." Sparrow that fuels Chris and his parents to this day. Get
remembers it all, remembers thinking he'll be on with life."What's that line -- 90 percent of
damned if he was going to give up. The worst of living is just showing up?" Laura said. That's
it happened for him when kids are at their what they did. Sure, Chris could have thrown a
meanest, insensitive and unconscionable. For daily pity party. And what would be the point?
Chris, that meant his time at Brookhaven Middle he asked himself. After the party is over, he'd
School, especially as a sixth-grader. "People still be 4-foot-6, still couldn't play football,
would pick me up," he said. "People would spin basketball, baseball with his high school buds.
me around." Kids would pick up Sparrow either And the knuckleheads would still be there with
under the armpits or by the ankles and make their sharp tongues and dull minds.
looping circles with his body horizontal to the
ground. "They would call me names in both And so the Sparrows circled the wagons, Ron,
English and Spanish," Sparrow said. Did he ever Laura, Chris and sister Lauren, 16, an Analy
fight? "No," he said. "I knew I couldn't win." junior and staunch defender and supporter. It was
Lauren who stepped in when Chris was being
Somewhere between rage and indignation, his teased at school. It was Lauren, 5-foot-3, two
parents lived, managing their anger, adjusting to years younger but all-too-willing to be the big
a life that challenged them. Teaching Chris sister.
maturity, they had to display that characteristic
as well if it was to have any influence. It is a So now with 50 seconds left in that game against
dynamic all parents of special-needs children Healdsburg, Chris hits the free throw. Does that
experience, but in the Sparrows' case, it was even wipe out all the mess he had to endure to get
more demanding. there? "Yeah, sort of," Chris said. Not
completely, he was saying. The people who
Laura is 4-foot-10 -- "on a good day" -- and demean someone, they should know that. Scars
knew first-hand the road Chris would have to remain, and how proud of that could they be?
travel. Not a dwarf, just a person of small stature, Brag on that and see how far that gets you.
Laura has a wish, a wish so close to her, it's like
The real victory for Chris Sparrow that night Gavin was too small. However, Goodwill had a
wasn't that he sank the free throw or that he was trail-a-bike, so I figured that it was worth trying.
even in the game. The victory for him, like his
mom said, was showing up. Keep showing up, The Adam’s trail-a-bike worked perfectly. I
and something good will happen. "Chris became needed to replace the crank shaft with a shorter
average," Laura said. On a night in the middle of one and add blocks to the pedals. I tried an
February, Chris Sparrow became what he always adaptive crank shortener that I found at
wanted to be. Average. One of the guys. No
more. No less.
And so if the city of Sebastopol wants to truly
honor that achievement, Chris Sparrow doesn't
ride by himself in a convertible at the Apple
Blossom Festival. He rides in the back of a flat-
bed truck with his coach and teammates, with
Analy's coach and the Analy players, and with
that game official who sent him to line. They all
wave. They smile. They take their bows. They're
all in this together.
Sometimes 100 percent of life is just showing
Adaptivemall.com. The trail-a-bike’s crank shaft,
however, was too narrow for the wide crank
Tandem Biking shortener. I also tilted the handlebars to help
By Susan Larkin Gavin reach. We’ve been using the bike ever
I had no qualms about Gavin attending
kindergarten. I knew and liked his teacher. We There are disadvantages. When Gavin wiggles,
had a great IEP team. However, the question in the bike jiggles. When we’re riding together, I
my mind was how to get to school. In preschool, concentrate on our balance and am not good at
Gavin took the school bus, which the district changing gears. We, thankfully, have a
provided for students with disabilities. He loved relatively flat commute, though I now know that
the bus; it was a big part of preschool the school is up a slight incline.
experience. The district could continue to
provide Gavin with bus transportation, but we However, the advantages outweigh the
live only a mile from school, and I felt he should disadvantages. First, the bike makes Gavin
go to school the same way that Grace did: popular. Everyone notices the boy on the cool
walking or biking. Walking was out of the bike, and all the students want their parents to
question; I wasn’t up to leaving 20-30 minutes get one. Not a day goes by that we don’t
earlier in the morning. A stroller was overhear a kid asking for a similar bike. It also
inappropriate. I considered getting a wagon, but gives us both lots of exercise. Although Gavin
that wouldn’t give Gavin any exercise. can’t steer, break, or change gears, I know when
I wanted a bike. I love to bike and so does he’s pedaling by the boost power from the back.
Grace. Though Gavin likes to bike, he wasn’t I also know when he’s slacking off and must
off training wheels, and a small bike is a lot remind him to pedal.
slower than our bigger bikes. The answer for me
was an Adam’s Trail-a-bike. This is a child’s Now that the weather is fine and gas is so
bike that hooks on to an adult bike to make it expensive, we bike lots of places… to the store,
tandem. Most of the bike shops told me that
to the park, to friends’ homes. And, Gavin can
keep up with the family. Giants’ Game
By Nathaniel Johnston
Ok, we had California covered, but in the middle
of December, we moved to Colorado to help my The Giants game on April 26 was a fun time. It
mother. We quickly enrolled the kids in school. was a cold night but, we stuck through it. The
They fit in well and had a great time. Again, boys gave the girls the jackets, so the boys had to
however, my question was how to get to a school keep warm by sticking close to each other. It was
that was less than a mile from our home. We a great time just hanging out with friends and
didn’t have our bikes, so that was out of the family watching a classic American sport. It was
question. We tried walking, but it took too long also a fun experience, for most of us, to ride the
and was too tiring. This time, we used a wagon coke bottle slide, while some of us stayed back
for the first few weeks. We saw a lot of nature and watched the game. While enjoying the game
this way: bunny trails in the snow, a fox we saw another LP and introduced ourselves to
crossing the golf course, eagles perched in the him. Turns out he knew Willem when he was
trees. young. We filled up on hot dogs and garlic fries
while we were there, so the parents told us to
We liked the wagon, but Gavin wanted to be on stay back! Even though the giants lost we had a
the move himself. We decided to scooter. The great time being with each other and just
first week was painful, taking half an hour or laughing at the stuff that didn't really happen in
more. However, within a few weeks, Gavin was the game. We would like to thank everybody
zooming around. I had to run to keep up with who made this event possible, to all the parents
him, plus he was mastering hills and turns that who provided the transportation and the tickets
made me nervous. and lastly the teens who have a great time
together no matter what we do. The next thing
Of course, you can’t scooter in the snow, but you that is coming up is the camping trip which
can sled. Gavin was the envy of all the should be a blast !□
kindergarteners when I pulled him on the sled.
Getting home took a little longer; we had to stop
to slide down the golf course hills. For a
California boy, what an adventure! □
Bringing in the Holidays Party
Saturday, November 1st 1:00-6:00
1352 Olympia Ave
Campbell, CA 95008
It's time for the annual Bringing in the Holidays Party at the Larkin-Su home.
This is a potluck party, so please bring your favorite dish to share with at least 10 people. Beverages and desert
will be provided.
The Larkin-Su's have a climbing structure and play house, riding toys, sandbox toys, and small kid toys. They
also have a long concrete slab for riding, skating, and scootering if you want to bring such toys. Please bring
music and entertainment for teens.
Please let Susan know by October 25th if you plan on attending so we know how many to set up for:
firstname.lastname@example.org, phone #: 408-369-9518
Sept 6th from 1:00-4:00
136 Ward Street
Lee Uniacke and Shari Weiser will host a pool party for all ages. Please bring your suit and towel. They
will provide snacks and drinks
RSVP by August 30th to the Uniacke-Weisers at (415) 924-6914 or email@example.com
From San Francisco and points south: Take 101 north to the Tamalpais/Paradise Drive exit (Corte
Madera/ Larkspur). Turn left at the traffic light onto westbound Tamalpais Drive. Continue
approximately 1 mile (road will curve to the right and to the left). Turn right onto Corte Madera Ave,
which changes name to Magnolia Ave at Larkspur's border; continue approximately one mile on
Magnolia Ave. into downtown Larkspur. At the first stop light, turn left onto Ward St. (Left Bank Cafe is
at this corner). Continue 1 1/2 blocks to 136 Ward Street (One house before cross street of Hawthorne).
House is on right, street parking
From the East Bay: Take the Richmond/San Rafael Bridge, exiting at the Sir Francis Drake exit 1/2 mile
past the bridge. Continue on Sir Francis Drake Blvd. for approximately 1 1/2 miles, passing the Larkspur
Landing shopping center, passing under under highway 101 (be in the left lane at this point). Take the
southbound entrance ramp to 101; remain in the right lane and exit immediately at the Lucky Drive exit
onto Fifer Drive. Continue on Fifer through traffic light. Turn left at the end of Fifer onto Lucky Drive.
Turn right at stop sign onto Doherty Drive. Turn left onto Magnolia Ave. Drive 1/4 mile into downtown
Larkspur. Turn right onto Ward St. (at the Left Bank Restaurant). Continue 1 1/2 blocks to 136 Ward
Street (One house before cross street of Hawthorne) House is on right, street parking
From the North Bay: Take 101 south to the Lucky Drive exit, exiting onto fifer Drive (exit is just after
the Sir Francis Drake Blvd. exit). Continue on Fifer through traffic light. Turn left at the end of Fifer
onto Lucky Drive. Turn right at stop sign onto Doherty Drive. Turn left onto Magnolia Ave. Drive 1/4
mile into downtown Larkspur. Turn right onto Ward St. (at the Left Bank Restaurant). Continue 1 1/2
blocks to 136 Ward Street (One house before cross street of Hawthorne). House is on right, street.
I am a faithful optimistic dove with hopes that will live forever, even though I will not.
I wonder if peace shall ever come, and if the inconsiderate war will ever stop.
I hear the wisp of butterfly wings as the marvelous creatures fly over the tall
golden grass meadow.
I see a fairy queen with such elegance dancing with her handsome fairy king.
I want the horrid animal testing and cruelty to stop; I think we have done enough
harm to nature already.
I am a faithful optimistic dove with hopes that will live forever, even though I shall not.
I pretend not to cry when I see the world melting into an immense ocean, of Sorrow.
I feel the distressed cry of the brave, worthy soldiers in Iraq.
I touch the winds of change and I know they can carry me wherever I choose to go.
I worry that the hoarse cries of the wolf won’t be heard.
I cry when I think of my father so far far away in London, England.
I am a faithful optimistic dove with hopes that will live forever, even though I shall not.
I understand that there isn’t any point in War; Bush is killing so many innocent
Soldiers, so many families are put apart because of this.
I say no one on this planet should be treated differently, no matter what they look
I dream that I become President of the United States of America and change the
the world into a better place, for every human creature.
I try my absolute hardest in life to achieve what everyone else does, but I don’t
I hope that someday we won’t remember what Global Warming was, or what
I am a faithful optimistic dove with hopes that will live forever, even though I shall not.
Saturday, October 4, 2008, 12 noon – 3:00pm
The farm is run by the Cutter Family who open it during the week to elementary school children who
want to experience life on a farm. On the weekends, however, it is much more private and our group will
once again be well cared for by the wonderful staff. There is a play area with things to climb, a petting
farm, strawberry patch, pumpkin patch, tractor rides, and the biggest hit is the sandbox filled with lima
beans where most of the kids were buried at least one time during the day last time we were here. We
even had relay races, tug of wars, and seed planting classes. It made a great spot for some wonderful
$7.00 Adult / $3.00 children
(Price includes for each child: hay ride, pumpkin, petting farm yard, haystack tunnels, seed planting
and much more.) What a deal!!
If you wear costumes, keep in mind the activities your child will be doing and dress as comfortably as
We will have a barbeque/potluck-type fare again this year. So if your last names begin with…please
A-H..... Meat, condiments
I-P...... Salad (pasta, potato, jell-O, lettuce with dressing,, chips, etc.)
Q-Z.... Dessert (brownies, cupcakes, cookies, etc.)
Please RSVP by Sept. 25th, to Lisa at 916-985-0915 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Hope to see a lot of you out
on the farm!!!
Coming from the South (Modesto/Manteca):
Head North on Highway 99; Take the Main Street exit; Go 3 miles east; look for Countryside Farms on
Coming from the North:
Head South on Highway 99; To Fremont St. exit (Hwy 26 East); Then turn right to come to Main Street;
Go ½ mile and look for Countryside Farms on your left-hand side.
paint and the "Star Wars" insignia; when she
sees her patients, hustling through the clinic in
the white lab coats she alters herself; and, when
she goes out to eat or hits the gym. While on her
bike, which she bought for $20 on craigslist, she
has seen motorists hold cameras out their
windows and snap her picture. Such reactions
make her bristle -- but they don't make her
change her ways.
"That is the remarkable thing about her," said
Paul Dellemonche, a close friend. "Where the
rest of us would say, 'I don't want to draw any
No shortage of stature for UC Davis more attention to myself,' for Sonia, the bike was
physician: Colleagues admire tiny cheap, she liked it and she could give a crap
physician's talent, charisma about what people think."
By Blair Anthony Robertson Liu agreed to be interviewed for this story with
Sacramento Bee Thursday, October 4, 2007 the idea it could clear up misconceptions about
little people and, perhaps, inspire people of all
Some people watch Sonia Liu because they can't shapes and sizes to get beyond whatever
help it. Some do double takes. Others flat-out limitations they may have.
stare because they don't know any better, so
taken aback are they by what they see. But Liu, But she had concerns about being featured in a
who is in the second year of a three-year medical newspaper. "I don't want to feel like a circus
residency at UC Davis Medical Center, is show. I don't want to be put on display," she
oblivious to most of the extra attention. said. Her friends say that while her short stature
may be the first thing people notice, it's also
"I really don't think about what other people see something they soon forget, practically bowled
because I'm just doing my thing," said Liu, 28. over by her intelligence and a charisma that
"You're given what you have and you don't know lights up every room.
what it's like to live any other way. I always "Sonia is like a personality. When she walks into
forget what I look like because my friends don't a room, you know she's there -- and it's not
treat me any differently." because of her size," said Sonny Bains, a fellow
"When I see myself in pictures with my friends medical resident and friend. "Her glow comes
next to me, I'll say to myself, 'Oh yeah, I am 2 from knowing herself really well. She knows
feet shorter." what she wants with her life, she's doing it and
she's happy doing it." "She's very disarming and
Liu was born with achondroplasia, the most she has a great sarcastic sense of humor," said
common medical condition that causes Dellemonche, a psychiatry resident in
dwarfism. Her head and torso are normal size, Providence, R.I., who met Liu when the two
but her limbs are much shorter. attended medical school at the University of
"Basically, it's a genetic condition where the Michigan. "Many people in my class thought she
long bones don't grow as fast," she said. "Over would be an excellent psychiatrist because she
80 percent of the time, it's a spontaneous has a knack for putting people at ease and getting
mutation, so that most people you meet, like me, them to open up. It's a great quality to have as a
don't have a family history of it." doctor in any field of medicine."
Because she is so active, Liu turns heads in all Outside of her medical pursuits, Liu is a devoted
kinds of places: when she rides 2 1/2 miles to traveler, opting to take a year off before medical
work on a child-size bike with the sparkly purple school to see the world. She's musical and
artistic. She cooks and sews her clothes and house when she was a child so it would have
makes crafts. She also confronts her fears. To lower than standard light switches.
get over her stage fright, for instance, she used to Liu excelled in school at every level and was
take her guitar to dive bars and perform on open very social. In high school, she had scores of
mic nights. friends. The only thing missing was romance. "It
sucked, but you just kind of accept it. I think I
Liu exudes confidence and is secure enough to very much had the little sister syndrome. I think
ask for help, according to Kay Nelsen, a family part of it was because of my appearance and part
medicine physician who supervises Liu and other was my relationship with all my guy friends,"
residents. "She rose to the top of her class she said. "You just accept it as part of life. I
because of that," Nelsen said. "She's a very don't expect people to look beyond that all the
positive person and that radiates to her time."
colleagues and her patients."
When Liu finishes her residency, she will begin
By the time she finishes her residency, Liu will paying off $104,000 in student loans. She hopes
have seen about 1,600 patients. Many of them to start her family practice in San Francisco or
will have a lasting impression. "She's very perhaps Italy. A family physician can expect to
thorough. She listens to you and she wants make $120,000-$170,000 a year, Liu said.
what's best for you," said patient Leslie Wilkins,
48, who suffers from chronic back pain, arthritis During a rare afternoon off, Liu was asked how
and asthma. Asked about her reaction when she she manages not to dwell on things that hold
first visited Liu, Wilkins smiled and said, "I was most people back. She smiled and said, "I'm a
surprised and then impressed how she got around busy person. I have to do my laundry -- and I
to things. With her now, you don't really notice might have to help deliver a baby today."
it." After renewing a prescription for Wilkins
and gently suggesting she quit smoking, Liu Around the Bay in LPA
pulled out a small step and washed her hands at Official Newsletter of the San Francisco Bay Area Chapter of the
Little People of America
the sink. It's the kind of thing she does all the Published Quarterly and Available On-line
time, using tools or taking detours to get through Website: www.lpabayarea.org
her day. ______________
All Articles represent the opinions of the authors
and do not necessarily represent LPA,
"I'm not the majority of the population and I'm its members, or its officers.
not going to be a prima donna about it," she said. _____________
When she needs something on a high shelf, she'll National LPA
tell people she's getting it, noting, "I don't want 1-888LPA-2001
anyone running over and saying, 'Can I get that www.LPAONLINE.ORG
for you?' " 417 Donegal Way
Liu has been doing it that way most of her life. Lafayette, CA 94549-1707
She grew up in a Chicago suburb, the daughter email@example.com
of high-achieving parents from Taiwan, both of
Susan Larkin—Secretary/Parent Coordinator, Newsletter Editor
whom are average height. Her father has a Ph.D 1352 Olympia Ave.
and is a radiation physicist, her mother a retired Campbell, CA 95008
biologist. Liu's brother is four years older and a 408-369-9518
financial analyst in New York. firstname.lastname@example.org
Linda Peterson—Treasurer/Teen Coordinator
Early on, Liu's parents realized their daughter 6425 Cockrill St.
was handling being different just fine. Only Petaluma, CA 94952
years later did Liu realize they customized their 707-664-9421
San Francisco Bay Area Chapter
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