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Month: October 2011

stone soup, homemade bread, and apple cider

We spent yesterday afternoon sitting around a backyard campfire with a group of friends from Aidan’s Junior Great Books club. They had been reading folktales and recently read the classic folktale “Stone Soup.” You know the one–about the pilgrim who comes to town and tells the hungry town folk that he can make soup-enough-for-all from a [singlepic=639,300,300]stone. He begins by boiling a single stone in water, and as the people ask him if it’s ready he says, “Not quite yet. It would be a bit better if we had some salt…” And so it goes, the town folks one-by-one contribute the very little each of them has to the stone soup–one person celery, another carrots, yet another sage, then lentils, potatoes, garlic, and so on. A true lesson in the power of cooperation and coming together as a community. So we thought it would be cool to reenact the story in the beautiful fall weather over a warm fire–each child contributing one ingredient they prepared and brought with them.

As the soup cooked, the children moved inside to kneed some dough prepared by Dawn, the host of our get-together, and shape it into delicious loaves of their own creation. There’s nothing like fresh baked bread hot from the oven with homemade apple butter oozing over the crust to accompany delicious soup. Add to that hot apple cider and it just doesn’t get much better.

We danced, made painted leaf crafts, played, ate good food, and talked. Easy-peasy good times.

colorfully creating

As I mentioned in one of my previous posts, this fall has been a busy one so far with many activities and running around. One of the activities that Aidan has been participating in is a drop-in art class. Last week seemed an especially busy one and the thought of leaving the house by 9am and missing out on spending time with Mike that morning just to get to an art class was really not sitting well with me. So, Aidan and I decided to skip the class, stay home, hang out with Mike, and then when Mike left for work we took time to do our own art projects together. What a blast we had together! We spent almost two hours painting, drawing, reading about famous artists (from Discovering Great Artists), and just having fun. The next day Aidan wanted to do more art so we found a great resource online (called  Art Projects for Kids) and dove into more art projects exploring watercolors and pastels, and trying our hand at copying the greats like Van Gogh, Miro, Klee, and Mondrian.

Aidan loves art and he loves to explore his creative side with all types of art. And I love seeing him creating and exploring. I, too, love art (looking at it, appreciating it, etc.). However, I don’t consider myself creative at all when it comes to making this type of art. I joke that I can’t make myself deviate from the example that I’m looking at–something in me just makes me want to replicate what I see without really putting my own touches on it. I have such a difficult time letting go and just being free with painting or drawing. But, despite my shortcomings with this, I love trying my hand at this type of art. It makes it even more enjoyable when Aidan and I can do this together–sharing, learning, laughing, and creating. Here are photos of some of our recent artwork:

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