Friday...must be Good Earth Farm school! The walk is our first favorite thing of this day.
and lamb's ear, so dewy
good morning, doves
We get there early to help with the set-up;
a station for hand-washing, and one for dish-washing after lunch.
After circle time and a walk, there are peanuts around a fire.Shagbark Seed and Mill Company came to show us how to thresh the amaranth we harvested the week before.
We learned how some people thresh with a flail - basically a hinged tool made of one long piece of wood and a smaller piece attached at one end (see the photo below). To be truly efficient with your flailing, this would be done in a circle of people, each with their own flail, and there would be a rhythm to the work, allowing for a steady thump-thump-thump-thump-thump as each flail hits the floor on its own beat. To give us an idea, Brandon said, "you know, it's like doing The Wave". Silence. The kids had no idea what he was talking about, so he started to laugh and said, all right, circle up, and before we continued, he taught the kids how to do the wave. Pretty darn funny.
After threshing comes winnowing, where the pink petals of the amaranth flower are separated from the tiny white seeds. The petals are so light that this process can be done very simply: by dropping seeds from one hand to the other...
After placing the flowers and leaves on our open papers, we folded them shut, and using wooden spoons, wooden spatulas and what I think were wooden drawer pulls, we "burnished" or rubbed on the paper, over the areas where the flowers lay.
The results were quite lovely.