Saturday, December 4, 2010

Christmas In The Soddies

When I was young, my grandparents gave me a complete set of Little House books and I would immerse myself in the world of Laura Ingalls Wilder. To this day I still love to read that same set of books. While I understood it was a hard life, I was fascinated by prairie living and the force that drove people continuously west.

When I found out the Plains Conservation Center in Aurora was having a Christmas In The Soddies day, I knew we were going - no questions asked.

It was a great day to go back to 1887 on the prairie. Although it was a bit chilly, and the wind whipped around, fiercely at times, the sun shone bright. There was no electricity. The buildings were small and made primarily out of sod.

The kids mixed and rolled molasses sugar cookies while one of the "homesteaders" baked them in her wood stove.

The Girl learned how to sew quilt squares and got to contribute her section to a baby quilt they were making.

The Boy learned the finer points of blacksmithing while The Girl made a tin punch ornament.

The kids made jingle sticks and clothespin dolls, ate popcorn, drank cider and sang Christmas carols in the one room sod schoolhouse with the wood stove.

The sod schoolhouse
Inside the sod schoolhouse (The Boy is adding a buffalo chip to the stove...)

They even played a game of horseshoes with Mr. LH outside in the schoolyard.

Once we had taken part in every available activity and our fingers were numb with cold, we caught the wagon out of the village and back to 2010, catching glimpses of prairie dogs along the way. Yes, life was hard back then, but in a way, much simpler too.

We'll be back again next year.

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Joy said...

How fun! I'd *love* to take the kids to something like this. I guess we'll settle for Old Salem for now...

Trish said...

It's very much like Old Salem, just not as civilized :)