Wednesday, 22 August 2012

When one is on the mend

We were afraid from the very beginning of our trip…even before we left, actually…that someone would get sick.  And someone did in the wee hours of the morning.  We’re not sure what exactly caused my littlest one to be running a fever and have a tummy ache, but we do think that some of it is due to the time change and less than ideal sleeping conditions, causing her to be run down.  So, we wondered what our day would be like, and I dreaded being cooped up in a hotel room with three little ones – one miserable because her body aches and the other two miserable because of the cramped quarters.

I was surprised that her fever seemed to be gone when she woke up this morning.  So, we started to venture out.  Today’s outings were intended to be focused on the Acadian history and culture on the Island, which we started to take a look into when we read Banished from Our Home.  I had decided to ensure we had some longer car rides if we did head out, although this is relatively speaking – it is a small island!  On top of that, we were getting a later start.  So, instead of heading to Rustico to check out an old Acadian homestead, we headed for the Acadian Museum in eastern PEI.  Our tour started off with a video of the history of the Acadian peoples on the Island and where the culture is at today.  Then, we moved into the exhibit hall.  Nicholas was quite into reading through all the exhibits (provided I did the reading).  Jaelyn had immersed herself to her own satisfaction through the video and wanted no part of reading the exhibits, so it proved a tricky balancing act!  The last hall featured art by Acadian Islanders.  The car ride was relatively long, the tour was relatively short, and Astrin was content to be strapped to my front.  Given the way it could have gone, I still rate the stop a success.

We ventured further into the “Evangeline” area and found the Bottle Houses.  It is a collection of three houses and gardens, built by a local Acadian out of recycled bottles and cement,  They were constructed in the 1980’s, and underwent repairs in the late 1990’s due to the impacts of the spring thaw on the materials.  We didn’t get into the science of this though – the children simply didn’t have the interest.  We did talk about the symmetry of the designs instead, as this was easier for all of us to discuss.  We also learned about how Acadians would plant their vegetable and herb gardens, and tried our hand at guessing what all the plants were.  Mostly though, we just enjoyed the beauty and ingenuity of the creations.  It makes me want to create something with bottles and cement in my backyard! 

Our evening was very low key – unfortunately, Astrin’s fever returned.  The children wrote letters while their sister had a bath and napped on my lap (all the extra cuddles are about the only good thing that comes out of a little one being sick, yes?).  I asked the older children what they needed so they could quietly fall into a peaceful slumber.  Later, they snuggled into bed and I started reading Anne of Windy Poplars to them.  I counted backwards from 5, turned out the lights, and it’s been fairly quiet ever since.  No one really even moved as I fired up the computer to write this post.

Here’s hoping that peaceful slumber lasts all night long.

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