Monday, August 16, 2010

Blueberries, Wheat, and Books

We have been reading a couple of books this last week. Climbing Kansas Mountains by George Shannon and Pancakes, Pancakes by Eric Carle. They are great books!

Climbing Kansas Mountain is about a boy, Sam, whose father takes him to climb a kansas mountain. The boy's response is "sure, when pigs fly" (not in a mean way but a funny way as he had heard his father say before). They go off together to where his father works at the grain elevators because, as his father says, a mountain is just a high, quiet view. They see the Kansas landscape and notice that it is as flat as their table at home and the roads among the fields are like their checkered tablecloth. Its a cute story with lots to talk about. Along with idioms, similes, metaphors, geography, and the artwork, we talked about the process of harvesting wheat and turning it into flour. Daddy brought home some stalks of wheat cut from a friends farm.

Pancakes, Pancakes! is a fun book. Here is the summary taken from amazon: The barnyard rooster crows and Jack wakes up -- hungry, of course! What does he want for breakfast? A big pancake! But first, Jack's mother needs flour from the mill, an egg from the black hen, milk from the spotted cow, butter churned from fresh cream, and firewood for the stove. Jack's mother get strawberry preserves from their cellar to put on the pancakes.

On Saturday morning, we went to pick blueberries. We went to Watt's farm in Belew's Creek. Its a family farm that has been growing blueberries for 30 years. Picking blueberries is easy, fun for all of us, and yummy. The blueberries were at the perfect height for Gabe all the way up to Jeremy. Of course, Gabe pretty much ate everything that he picked. But he would first pick them and put them in his cup before he then ate them. Olivia indulged too. Before we left she drew a picture of herself picking the blueberries and then asked if we could eat some for lunch when we got home. :)

* don't you love Gabe's face! :)

On the way home, we stopped by the Old Mill of Guilford. It is a restored, fully operational 18th century grist mill. It is picturesque with a big water wheel and all.  Unfortunately, the lady was done running the grinding equipment for the morning when we got there but we got to see it and talk about how it works. This is just like she saw in Pancakes, Pancakes. We bought some of their buckwheat pancake mix to make at home. Olivia and daddy made the pancakes for dinner that night along with some of our fresh blueberries made into a sauce for the top. YUMMY!

Another book we read not too long ago and went perfectly with this adventure, was Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey. Also The Little Red Hen i remember from my childhood.

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