GPHS Moorings Newsletters - page 49

Once again this summer, the Provencal-Weir house was the place
where young Grosse Pointers could take a break from the trappings
of a 21st century childhood and travel back in time, experiencing
first-hand how their 18
century counterparts would have whiled
away their summer days.
Three two-week sessions of Ribbon Farm Days program were held
during July and August, with about 20 children, ages 6 to 13 yrs. old,
attending. In
Session I,
they dyed and scented their own soap and
poured them into beautiful decorative molds. Some of the images
include dolphins, horses, a lighthouse, flowers and many more.Then
the kids created ceramic bowls to put the soap in and painted the pots.
They baked homemade cornbread and shook whipped cream into
butter. It took about a half an hour for 10 children to form the fresh butter.
Session II
GPHS Director of Education Izzy Donnelly
measured the children’s feet, cut out the felt and then the
children sewed their own custom-fit moccasins.They
decorated them with markers and sewn beads.They
created buffalo hide paintings with Native American
symbols, squeezed fresh grapefruit for a tasty beverage
and made Cinnamon Peach Crisp with fresh peaches.
Three of the mothers asked for the recipe!
Session III,
the children made homemade ink from
blackberries, an old Roman recipe.They crushed the berries
and put them through a strainer.Then they added vinegar
and salt and put them in small glass ink jars.They practiced
penmanship from the 18th century on the slate boards, and,
using turkey-feathers quill pens, they wrote on stationary
paper.They melted candle wax in a pot and dipped the wick to make taper
candles.Then they made fresh blueberry crisp and squeezed fresh lemonade.
Lunch was usually on the porch and recess included playing with the
game of graces, hoop and stick, cup and ball, jump rope and the buzz saw.
They went up to the One-Room School for some lessons and read books
on related topics. On the very hottest day, they had recess inside and
played card games, checkers and pickup sticks.
“Ribbon Farm
Days is a time for
children to slow
down, be creative,
enjoy each other’s
company, play old
fashioned games,
sew, paint, do
ceramics and bake
from scratch,” said
Donnelly. “One
mother told me
she planned her
whole summer
around it.We
have had a
wonderful time!”
Ribbon Farm Days,
Summer 2011
Ian shows the story he painted
on his Buffalo Hide Painting.
The children proudly show off their
home made soaps.
The children proudly display the handmade moccasins.
Mary Ridella and Daniel Kubacki help as Ava Jacobs draws with
her turkey feather and blacberry ink.
Atticus shows off his Buffalo
Hide Painting.
“All this shaking for just a little butter”?
Ava Jacobs shows off her
taper candles she dipped
earlier that day.
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