Wednesday, April 11, 2012

SPRING BREAK: the highlights

The remainder of our spring break flew by in a flash.  A friend, her two, my two and I spontaneously packed a picnic and drove out to our new favorite "hiking spot" in anticipation of the coming cold front.  The remnants of last years floods, vast scoured stretches of ground and mounds of drift wood, are perfect for easy fort building.  We built a fort a few weeks ago, but when we returned it was flattened.  The children were not deterred.   They simply picked up the pieces and put them back together in a new arrangement.  The clouds loomed on the horizon, but were slow to arrive and we soaked in the sunshine, wishing that we had worn lighter coats. 

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The cold front did arrive and we woke to blowing snow.  Ivory and Sylvan and I piled into the car to meet up with another friend and her son who where staying outside of town a bit.  I managed to get us hopelessly lost, knocking on the wrong yellow house with a red door, and finally after many twists and turns arriving at the right yellow house with a red door.  The snow hat covered the way markers I was looking for.  This was the second time this week that I managed to get us lost for no apparent reason. 


Sylvan loved the snow, scooping little bits of it into his mouth and later contentedly riding the sled round and round the house even after the other two tired of it and his pant bottom was soaked.



Saturday I divided up all the house cleaning tasks I usually get done while Ivory is at school between all of us..  when I came back down stairs from putting away laundry, Ivory and Adam were engrossed  in a game of chess.  It was her first attempt at playing and Adam was so intent on explaining the moves to her that she beat him fair and square.  I warmed up the left over squash burgers and oven fries from the night before and left them alone, washing the dishes and smiling to myself at Ivory's explanations of what was happening on the game board.  


So excited!!!!  Ivory burst out of the front door off to look for her hidden "eggs".  I struggled with the choice of whether or not to hide Easter eggs at all, and last minute I decided to run the the grocery store on get a few egg stuffers (which really turned into a trip to two stores because after I read all the ingredients on the candy labels, I decided to get candy somewhere else).  After both of the kids were tucked into bed, I pulled out this fun bright fabric I had happened to find at the thrift store a few days earlier and sewed a few fabric bags to hide the candy in.  Adam was skeptical: "But, she will be expecting eggs".  She didn't care.  She loved finding the bags and once they were all gathered, she ceremoniously untied each one and squealed with delight. 


 During breakfast we could watch the kids next door running around outside finding all of their hidden treasures, and it would have crushed her to have been left out of the fun. 


Even Sylvan had an "egg" to put into his little basket. 


As with many holidays, this Easter was a ritual centered around food and its preparation.  Starting with the amazing waffle eggs Benedict Adam made for breakfast, my carrot apricot terrine that had to chill for 6 hours, the ham, kettle corn, the cupcakes Ivory and I made while Sylvan napped and ending with us all sitting on the floor, clutching plates and cups in a living room filled with friends and laughter. 

Full of Fruit Cupcakes

1/2 cup raisins
1/4 cup apple juice concentrate
1 ripe banana
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup applesauce (I opened my last jar of applesauce from last fall)
1 egg
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup wheat germ or bran cereal
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp cinnamon

- pre-heat the oven at 400
- heat raisins in the apple juice concentrate until soft, puree
- add the banana, oil, vanilla, apple sauce and egg, blend together 
- in a large bowl mix the dry ingredients
- add the blended ingredients to the dry ingredients
- fill a muffin tin until 3/4 full (oil the tins or line them)
- bake for 20 min
- cool and frost

Icing 

8 ounces cream cheese
3 tbsp apple butter (I used my apple butter)
2 tbsp apple juice concentrate

Cream together the above ingredients, adding more apple butter or apple juice concentrate if needed. 

This recipe is from Earth Child 2000 by Kathryn Sheehan and Mary Waidner, Ph.D.   I love thumbing through the pages of this book and it is a great resource for parents or teachers looking for Earth Science Activities for young children.

1 comment:

  1. LOVE it that Ivory is playing chess. My dad taught us to play chess, and it is a childhood memory (and skill) we still treasure.

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