|The 2011 Phinney Spring Tree. Photo by Pam Herrebout|
|Decorating the tree. Photo by Gail Gensler|
Simone and Marina got started creating spring tree decorations. They decided to hang dog treats since so many folks walked their dogs on the sidewalk and, finally, they decided to add chocolates for all the other people walking by. Soon, Heather and Gail realized random neighbors or passersby were leaving their offerings at the tree. Over the years it took on a life of its own; many of the neighbors renamed it the "giving" tree: take something, leave something. In turn, this little tree has created such inspiration and joy for the people in and around the neighborhood. It's, also, a favorite among the four-legged friends who become conditioned to stopping at the tree to pick up a treat. Even after the tree is taken down, the neighborhood dogs still stop at that spot on their walks.
Offerings come and go. Some left behind have included an origami bird, a Pokeman trading card, hawk feathers, strings of beads, a tiny birdhouse, a whistle, a pez dispenser; even a set of ear plugs Heather suspects was left by a hungry worker after taking a chocolate.