In an effort to fulfill requirements for our libraries summer reading program - 600 minutes by July 23rd, FYI - the girls and I have been reading Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder. I'll admit that the plot line hasn't exactly captured Punkin's attention like our reading of The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, but Shortcake has been relatively engrossed in the story of a young Laura as she grows up in the woods of Wisconsin in the mid-1800s. We take time during each reading to talk about how different life was then than it is now: how they couldn't just run to the grocery story or Wal-Mart when they ran out of food or other supplies, how they didn't have furnaces or air conditioners to keep them warm or cool like we do today, how they didn't have things like television or video games for entertainment.
Shortly after we started the book, our local state park hosted Cabin Fest. Located on the park's property is a cabin built in 1845, and it is a favorite spot to visit anytime we are there. During Cabin Fest, the girls were thrilled to learn that in addition to being able to witness various activities reminiscent of life in the 1800s (soap making, hand made tools and weapons, quilting, cooking over an open fire, men and women dressed in period clothing, etc.), the normally locked cabin would be open to visitors. Despite 90 degree weather by 10 am the girls were pumped to check it out.
I'm going to ask you to take a look at this picture taken 15 minutes into our tour and let you form your own opinions as to how well you think Shortcake would have tolerated Laura's lifestyle living in the little house in the big woods.
Body language is a powerful medium.