Tuesday, October 02, 2012

A Day at a Farm Outpost - Robert Is Here

The kids on a vintage tractor

Normally I school during the week, 8 AM-12 Noon, from Monday through Friday. However, when I saw that the local playgroup was going to be at Robert Is Here, a fruit stand and farm outpost 40 minutes away, I said, count me in! Did I mention they have fabulously fresh fruit smoothies?

Another draw was the fact that an old friend I hadn't seen in more than a year was going to be there too. The kids were excited. Builder, my oldest, had a vague memory of spending lazy, hot hours watching emus and yes, sipping smoothies. I hadn't been at the place in a few years, and was pleasantly surprised the management - probably Robert - added a large, enclosed play area which included a mini water play area, shaded seating, benches, and tended grass. This fenced place was directly adjacent to some animal friends - ducks, goats, sheep, and a disgruntled emu. The kids were in heaven.

All three having their yummy fruit smoothies

Despite the escalating temperatures, we kept cool by downing our waters I brought over and finally succumbing to getting ice-cold fruit smoothies - strawberry-banana for the kids, mango-coconut for me. 
Robert Is Here sells a variety of stuff, from fresh produce and exotic tropical fruit to jarred preserves and sauces. It's tempting to buy many things you don't need. I was only able to keep myself in check by reminding myself that I was well stocked back home. I did make a mental note to return when I wasn't.

Another view of play area, with animals in the background

The kids played with some friends they haven't seen in a while, and spent the hours throwing starfruit at a hungry iguana, running through sprinklers, playing peekaboo with the ostrich, imitating the donkey's bray, feeding the goats, geese, and ducks, exploring an old tractor, and learning how to operate a manual water pump. In short, they had a blast! I enjoyed watching their unrestrained play and the excitement on their glistening faces. Homeschooling is not all about hitting the books. As Charlotte Mason herself said, children learn from books and things. Not just books. Not just things. On this day, we focused on the things, and it was wonderful.

Starfruit-catching iguana on the rocks

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