Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Well, no picture but plenty of words

I am in a school this week which is always lots of fun! I am teaching nutrition to small groups of 3rd, 4th & 5th graders. I started the day wanting to know a bit about my population so decided to ask lots of questions which they enthusiastically answered. One of my questions was, "what is the weirdest thing you've ever eaten?". Somehow that question got turned around to, "What is the nastiest thing you've ever eaten?". Cooked carrots was a popular response. One child had eaten sushi and seemed less than thrilled about it. Someone said their aunt eats fruit salad with pineapple. Another piped up, "You can't eat them things 'cause all them pointy parts." Obviously, that led to an instant addition to lesson plans for our next time together - we will be dissecting a real pineapple.

They were asking me questions about what I did and I was explaining some of my farm duties. I told them of gathering eggs, washing, drying, weighing and packing them so that they could go to Saturday Market with me. One girl asked how I get the chickens out of the eggs so I can sell them. My first thought was that she was asking how I get the eggs out from under the chickens.... I asked if that is what she meant and she shook her head no and repeated the question. Then she added, "Chickens come out of eggs, right?" I pondered for a moment and realized she thought I had to get chickens out of the rest of the egg so that all I was selling was an egg. I explained the difference between a fresh egg and one that had been properly incubated for 21 days so that a chick could develop and hatch. Then I got a good chuckle envisioning myself standing at the kitchen sink, carefully breaking eggs and extracting chickens before sealing the eggs back up. When I told this to a friend, her comment was, "And you do it flawlessly, I've never noticed the seam."

School really was good but I did ask permission to change something. When the children first arrived, each was given a carton of grape juice and a packaged muffin. They picked at this as they watched a movie while waiting for camp to begin. When it was time to break into groups, each child carried their breakfast remains to the trash can. I watched as there were many muffins with barely a bite taken out of them pitched into the huge gray can. Some had never even been opened. I asked permission to bring a bucket today. All those blueberry muffins will be a nice little snack for some of our critters this afternoon.

Once school finished I had several errands to run. I had managed to felt a little soap-in-a-coat before I'd gone to the school but by the time I ran errands, gathered eggs and got them washed up for the day and did a few more routine chores around here, I had no gumption to do much else in the fiber department. Fortunately, Katy is here all day to gather the morning eggs and keep up with the babies. She'd already bottled the lambs so that I was not met by screaming wool balls when I arrived home.

Today I should be home shortly after noon. I have a gorgeous black fleece that Al sheared off of a pretty little sheep we call Baby Anise. I'd love to sit outside in dirty clothes with a big towel on my lap and just spin that up in the grease. I know with this heat that I'll get coated with greasy lanolin but the process is well worth it as the yarn is always so interesting once it is washed and dried. The heat really doesn't bother me and I enjoy the company of a few animals as I sit and spin.

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