Sunday, June 15, 2008

Week 3: The Farm

We're spending the week at my parents' farm. We'll be feeding the horses and cows (hopefully we won't be chasing/herding cows); weeding the garden; catching tadpoles in the pond; watching my dad cut and bale the hay (and being grateful we're still not strong enough to help haul it); and a variety of other farming activities.


Some of my favorite books are about farms or take place of a farm. My little kids love to look at books about farm animals and make the sounds.

Night Is Coming (Picture Puffins) by W. Nikola-Lisa

This book is a sweet lullaby with "farm" pictures that are as cozy as your grandma's quilt.

A Day No Pigs Would Die by Robert Newton Peck

This is my husband's favorite "coming-of-age" story. It's a novel for the older kids or for you.

The Very Busy Spider by Eric Carle

Eric Carle's books are fun and colorful. My toddlers love this board book. They make the sounds for each of the animals and enjoy rubbing their fingers over the texture of the "spider web".

Charlotte's Web by E. B. White and Garth Williams

This is the ultimate "farm" book. There's nothing better than cuddling up with your kids and reading aloud. This is definitely one of my favorite books to read to my kids. Either of the movie adaptations are fun and enjoyable as well.

Duck on a Bike by David Shannon

I've written previously about how much I enjoy this book. It is fun to read out loud to the kids. It's clever and funny and the illustrations are great.


Plant a garden. It's not too late in the season to put the seeds in the ground. In fact, considering that it was still frosting last week in parts of the state, you might be smarter to start planting a garden this week. You can avoid running around in the middle of the night covering your plants (brr! It was really cold last week).

It doesn't take a lot of space to grow a garden. Check out Square Foot Gardening: A New Way to Garden in Less Space with Less Work by Mel Bartholomew for ideas on growing gardens in a small area.

Stop by a local green house with the kids to pick up plants for your garden.

Talk with your kids about where food comes from. This can actually be a pretty funny conversation. One night at dinner, our family was talking about food and the animals that provide it. We were talking about pigs and cows. My daughter was three years old at the time and she asked what we get from horses. I answered "rides". Then she said, "rabbits give us carrots."


Wheeler Historic Farm is conveniently located in Salt Lake County. It's open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Saturday and offers a variety of farm activities. Admission is free but there are small fees for some of the activities such as taking a ride the tractor-pulled hay wagon or milking a cow.

Visit Farm Country at Thanksgiving Point. The kids will love the petting zoo, the pony rides or rides on the hay wagon. It's open from 10:00 am to 8:00 pm daily. The admission rates are $3.50 per person young or old (children under 2 are free). The admission includes one ride ticket.

Pet the farm animals for $2 or ride the ponies for $3 at Gardner's Village. It's open from 11 am to 6 pm daily.

On Saturday stop by the Farmer's Market at Historic Pioneer Park. It's open from 8:00 am to 1:00 pm. Enjoy the fresh produce and eat better.

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