One of the things I want to impress upon my family (myself included) is the cost in labour that fossil fuels replace when making things. For example, buying wool from the shops that has been spun on machine is great, cheap and very easy to source. imagine though if you had to hand shear, clean, card, dye and then spin the wool yourself. THAT labour is the true cost, replaced with the use of fossil fuels that we don’t see when we buy products. Only by making them ourselves do we truly appreciate the work that goes into artisan products and hence, the true cost to buy them. Heavy lessons? Maybe. Too heavy for children under 5? I don’t believe so.
I’m not talking about hitching them up to a wagon to bring in the harvest or anything so heavy. I mean they are only 4, 3 and not quite 2 after all, but we did have fun yesterday afternoon and my kids do indeed work for peanuts. 😉 Freshly shelled ones of course! 😀
Needing to grab just 5 more minutes and being overwhelmed by complaints of being hungry (when aren’t they) I grabbed a bag of peanuts and showed them how to crack open the shell to access the raw nuts inside. Instant peace apart from the bang bang of a clever child who grabbed a pint sized cricket bat with which to smack them open. 😦 Once we sorted out that the crackle and crunch of nuts being opened and munch of happy children chowing down filled my ears and I was able to finish off my job. Then I joined them. We cracked open just over 1/2 a kilo of nuts which are now soaking in salted water so I can activate them before making peanut butter. It took us probably 45 minutes to crack enough nuts to make a goodly sized jar of peanut butter. There’s the true price of making peanut butter! Although it doesn’t cover growing organic peanuts, harvesting them and shipping them here (they’re Australian but they don’t grow in our cold climes here so they do have some carbon miles to them) but at least my kids will understand where peanut butter comes from and hopefully appreciate much more the work that goes into making it. And here’s hoping it tastes as good as I believe it will. 🙂
And if you’re wondering why Orik rarely is seen in the photos of these activities, it’s due to this.
Mostly we do these activities in the early afternoon. He’s also a little too young at the moment but just in case yu wondered where he was. 😉