Saturday, October 8, 2011

A Brief Time Living the Life of a Pioneer Mom: Day One

So, the whole week of September 12th, Emily and I got up early, put on our long skirts, aprons and bonnets, and lived the life of pioneer women!  Well, not really!  I hardly did a lick of housework all week, and Emily said the spelling bee words were "easy-peasy!"

But we did learn a lot about making butter, spinning wool into yarn, sewing garments and dressing properly, grinding flour, wood-working tools powered by pedals and a flywheel, printing . . .  oh, and the difference between rawhide and leather (one is translucent and may substitute for glass panes, when no float glass is available).

And we met some lovely, lovely people!

We mimicked a typical 1860's school day with the ringing of the handbell, to call in the children.  Boys and girls all lined up according to height, with boys entering the schoolhouse in the left-hand door, and girls entering at the right.

Children started the morning by rising from their desks to sing "God Save the Queen," as it was Queen Victoria on the throne at the time, and Canada was English territory.  Immediately following this came the health inspection, when everyone is checked for clean fingernails and hands, clean ears, and nits or lice.  Some kids thought this was enormously funny.

After the spelling and math sessions, there was a playtime break, enjoyed by all ages.

Abundant climbing trees and hitching rails for climbing in front of the school.  Who needs a jungle gym?
After lessons, we all trooped off to learn about weaving  - the kids got to try their hands using a  loom over  a hundred years old!  Don't  know about the rest of the parents, but I was jealous not to get a turn too!  :-)

After weaving, we stood to learn about printing at the print shop, but tummies were getting empty and   . . .

. . . some of us were getting a little weary of standing still and listening attentively to the historian.  So we broke for lunch and got to know each other better.

Kerri, and little Joscelyn & Sebastian
The first day was really energetic, as we all worked hard to learn and adapt to the full-day routine we would be following all week.  Just one day out of five, and we were all exhausted by the end of it - but raring to go back the next day!