Saturday, June 8, 2013

Day 2: The Powell House, Hands-On for Children

At the timeshare at the end of the first day of touring, I got my four youngest kids ready for bed.  Here is Bronwyn playing a bit on the bed in the middle of getting changed.
Bronwyn is nearly 6 months old in this picture.
Excited to sleep in the big beds.

Goodnight kisses from Elijah.  How nice.
After all of the littles were settled, Mom and I headed back to Williamsburg.  We had purchased tickets to an evening concert of 18th century instruments in the Governor's Palace.  Here we are, all excited to be going out together, to a concert, in the governor's palace!  We are riding on the shuttle that goes from the parking area at the visitor's center and makes a large loop around the outside border of Colonial Williamsburg, making stops all along the way for tourists to get off at the one closest to where they want to go.  Once you are in Williamsburg, you must walk everywhere or take a horse and carriage.  No cars. 
First I will tell you the bad news, and then later, the good news.  We got to the palace gates to find them locked.  No concert.  Apparently if they do not sell out in the earlier concert then they do not hold the later concert at all.  No one told us.  Our anticipation became sad disappointment.  But I included these pictures of us to tell you the story because in the end, God was good, of course.  To be continued....
Moving on to the next morning, we went directly to a historic house that we knew was having an open house of hands-on children's activities all day.  We spent the whole morning here and it was really worth the time.  Above is the front of the Powell House and we are entering at the side gate to make our way through the yard to the grounds and the side entrance to the house.
It was the second week of April when we were there, but there was quite a bit blooming.
This is the side entrance to the house.  We continued around back first.
The kids are going to check out the hen house.
To the right is the kitchen garden.
I had never seen fennel growing, so I took a picture of a big fennel plant.  I love fennel.
The kitchen!
The cook!
He got the kids busy zesting lemon and peeling carrots with the side of a spoon.

He is telling them that the birds he's about to cook over the fire are only about the size of this large egg.
There was a pair of oxen being groomed and prepared for work around back.  The man attending to them talked about them and answered a lot of questions.  You can see, the kids were transfixed with this.
Pigeon house.  A pretty self-sufficient piece of property this must have been and is still.
Now for the inside of the house.  First was writing.
The kids were given pencils and paper and wooden boards with writing styles to copy so that they could imitate the handwriting of the early Americans.

I think Sam picked up on the drawing and embellishments more than the writing. 
This was a board game in the type they might have played. 
In the hallway, Calvin and Amelia found a couple more games.
Dad and William utilized the checker board, also in the hall.  The hallway was very wide and breezy.  They told us that the family would have practically lived in the hallway in the hot summer months because it was the coolest spot, with a wonderful airflow between the front and back doors.
This front room had a variety of children's toys and activities to try.
Wooden soldier dolls.
Cloth dolls for the girls.
Ben found a bag with a number of practical items in it to look through.
There were some adorable little tin soldiers that kept Elijah busy for a long time.
In the middle of the room was a table for drawing on slates and forming words with letter blocks.  Cecily did this herself!  (She might have had a little help)
The last room was the bedroom.  The lady interpreter in this room helped the children do several things, including fluff the feather mattress after laying on it and trying it out.

Washing up in a basin.
And there were lots of fun hats to try on.  :)

Pretty cute.   It made us want to buy some of these reproduction hats at a store in Williamsburg, but they were pretty expensive and so we didn't.

Last, we went out in the courtyard and found several outside games for the kids to try.  There was a wooden set of bowling pins.  There was a game similar to badminton with a shuttlecock. 
I think Ben made the most success of the hooping rolling activity.

And here we are, leaving through the front garden again.  What a neat  place!  Every week they open it up for a kids' day.  We were really glad we got over there for it!

1 comment:

Jennie and Julie said...

Really nice Julie! It made me live it over again, through a child's eyes. It's a fun way to keep the memories and photos.