Wednesday, May 30, 2012

It's nearly June

Wow, has this month ever sped by, and the weather has moved from early spring - chilly to midsummer hot and humid.  The garden is growing at an alarming rate (must order mulch tomorrow!!!) and I'm hardly keeping up, but we've been rewarded with lots of tasty asparagus, a few strawberries and some salad greens.  Not bad!  So much has happened that I decided to sum it up in pictures.

Younger daughter has resumed weekly riding lessons (and is making great strides, so I'm told).  The world's most affectionate chicken is a definite bonus when we visit the barn!

We have been exploring the woods behind our house:  rare red trillium flowers, young ferns and three young black bears were just some of our discoveries.

In my monthly biodynamics class we made tree paste from cow manure, clay and a few other ingredients, and painted the fruit tree trunks with it.  The trees looked like sculptures while they were still wet.  Then we inadvertently learned how to manage a bee swarm.  This latter event was not officially in the program but much appreciated anyway.

I got to chaperone my older daugther's class to the Higgins Armory Museum.  There was a presentation on the development of armor through the Middle Ages, a tour of the collection (the middle picture above is of a Roman gladiator's helmet), and following snack, the children's assignment was to draw a weapon or piece of armor from time periods they have studied and to write a short description.  I loved watching a few students in their work; their blossoming skills of observation, the direct experience of and involvement with the artifact they were drawing, the discussions that ensued with each other and the teacher...  We ended the visit in their large discovery room where foam castles could be erected, a game of floor chess played, and various bits and pieces of armor tried on.  It was a privilege to attend such a special day.

One of the greatest highlights of the month was the Medieval Ceremony for my daughter's class.  We met in a stone chapel at 6:00 am and each child was led through an adapted knighting ceremony.  The children had made swords and keys in woodworking class and were presented with these after publicly declaring the virtues they were working on.  Each child had an adult sponsor supporting them and of course there was beautiful music and singing.  Following the solemn ceremony, there was breakfast and games of pillow jousting, archery, javelin throwing and a running race, and then everyone enjoyed a truly wonderful medieval feast.

And now we are looking forward to June and all it will bring:  birthdays, the end of school, days at the pond and in the garden, the end of my class, strawberries.... so much to look forward to!

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