Saturday, November 10, 2012

FIAR - Rag Coat

This week we rowed through The Rag Coat.

We made a yummy dinner of butter bean stew w/ a side of collard greens and cornbread.
 Pear Stack cake
And Coal Cookies.....(these are gluten free/dairy free)

We studied a bit about the Appalachian Mountains and watched the movie Christy (the season premiere episode)...
Because of this, we talked about Appalachian superstitions...


  • Aching joints indicate rain.
  • When a bobwhite calls, it’s praying for rain.
  • Thick, tight shucks on corn indicate bad weather.
  • Killing a black snake and hanging it on a fence with its belly turned to the sun will bring rain before the next sunset.
  • If it rains on Monday, it will rain 3 days that week.


  • If a girl sleeps in a strange bed and names each bedpost a boy’s name, the post she looks to first upon waking will name the boy she’ll marry.
  • A girl won’t get married if anyone sweeps under her feet

1. If you tell a bad dream before breakfast it will come true. 
2. If you hear a dog howling in the middle of the night, it is a sign of a death in the community.
3. If your nose starts itching, company is coming.
4. Death comes in threes to a family or community.
5. If you whistle before breakfast, you will cry before dusk. 
6. If you drop a biscuit while taking them from the oven, you will have unwelcome company.

We worked on a rag doll kit.  This was a hands on project for mom since Lydia had trouble cutting and cannot sew on my machine yet.

We also made a Nettle Rag Doll

 We read this really neat story about appreciating all we have.
 We were fortunate enough to be given some coal...both washed and unwashed. (Can you tell the difference?)  So our study of coal began, where it's found and mined.

 This was a great book to read about coal.  And the uses that we have today and in the past for coal.
 I wanted to simulate mining, and how it's not I set up this project for the girls.

 After they finally cracked the shell (rock), they had to dig out the pieces and try to keep them as whole as possible.

Lydia learned how hard the shell was when she tried to break the shell without the hammer just using the table.
 This was fun science.  They had to mine the chocolate chips out.

Break the shell and crumble it to get the choco chips out whole.
They kept sneaking their "coal" from the pile.
Coal Flowers 

Since we had this wonderful coal, we decided to attempt the coal flowers project.

Lydia did one pink and one blue.  The pink one did not work because there was too much liquid.
But the blue one sprouted beautiful flowers!!!
This was a project that kids done with their mom's cleaning supplies.  The coal is not necessary, but it's what they had on hand.  And it provided a beautiful area for the "flowers" to grow!  

My dad, who works with coal, told us that the ammonia acts as a solvent to break down the coal.  The ammonia also speeds up the rate of evaporation.

We had fun learning about the Appalachian we will be rowing Cranberry Thanksgiving.  Can't wait to learn more about not judging people for what they look like!!!


  1. Five in a Row days! Oh, I remember them well :) We had so much fun. Loved this book! I'm so glad that your coal flowers turned out. We really enjoyed Cranberry Thanksgiving, too and I plan to read it again, and again every year over Thanksgiving.