(Goblin is 44 months)
So we've been MIA for a while. That's because we were on holiday, being Tudors at a historical re-enactment at Kentwell hall. Instead of telling you about the manor I'm going to tell you what our three and a half year old got out of living in the 16th century for a week.
Our next job each morning was to fetch the vegetables and legumes that we'd be using in the pottage. We only used things that would have been available and in season (ish) in 16th Century England, so no potatoes or tomatoes. Goblin helped carry turnips, carrots, broad beans, cabbage and various dried pulses and beans. He learnt that carrots were called roots and the generic term for cabbage and other brassica was 'worts'. He also learnt how to shell broad beans and most days he helped to get them ready for cooking, sometimes accompanied by a friend or two.
As well as vegetables Goblin learnt about herbs that we picked from the garden. He helped to pick mint, savoury, sage, lovage, thyme, good king henry, rosemary and chives. These were added to the pottage in great quantities to add flavour, and Goblin helped to cut them up using his own knife. All the re-enactors at Kentwell carry a knife, mostly hanging from their belts. Goblin learnt that you never try to grab someones knife. And you don't play with blades that have been left on the table. You never know how sharp they are - and after we had all the knives sharpened on the manor this was an essential thing for him to remember. He was very good and only used his own knife (under supervision).fire safety but at Kentwell he learnt extra things like never run towards a fire (incase you trip). And even if a fire pit looks like its not in use you need to check because logs can stay warm and smoldering a long time after the flames have gone. One morning he helped me dowse a fire that had been set in the middle of the sward and we watched the water boil as we poured it on the ash.
Goblin was given an authentic Tudor name. We called him Creature. When a labor wasn't going well and the midwife thought the baby might not live they would grab what ever part of the child they could (often a foot or hand) and not knowing the sex of the baby they would Christen it with a generic name so it would be able to go to heaven. Common names used by 16th century midwives included Creature of Christ or Vitalis, meaning life. Goblin took to his new Kentwell name and told anyone who asked that his name was Creature.
He also wore a dress. Boys were not breached until the age of 5 or 6, so both girls and boys wore a shift and pinafore (and a coat but Goblin never took to the coat and with the weather being so hot we didn't push it). He also wore a hat, and coif. I was expecting this to be an issue as he doesn't often wear hats in the 21st century. But when we explained that everyone kept their head covered, he accepted this and wore his hat and coif every day.