Technicolor Tartlets

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For Travis’s second Cook the Rainbow Raddish Kids recipe, we made desserts with all the colors of the rainbow! The tarts are prepared in this month’s keepsake: silicone tart pans in fun, bold colors.

First, we prepared the crust: in a stand mixer, we combined 1/2 cup Earth Balance butter, 1/3 cup powdered sugar, 1 and 1/4 cups flour, and 1/4 teaspoon salt Beat for about 2 minutes; the dough should be starting to clump.

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Divide the dough evenly among the 4 tartlet pans – about 1/2 cup per pan – and pat with your fingers to press the dough into the bottom and up the sides of the pans. Travis preferred watching me do this step. Our dough was quite crumbly, and I think we needed just a touch more butter.

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Use a fork to prick the bottom of each crust 8 times. Good counting practice! Place on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees F for 18 minutes. Let cool.

Meanwhile, we made the filling: in a stand mixer, combine 1/2 cup softened non-dariy cream cheese, 1/4 cup sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla. Beat until combined.

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Spoon the filling evenly into the cooled crusts, and spread to the edges with a spatula.

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To prepare our fruit topping, we sliced 4 strawberries, cut 1/2 cup green grapes in half, cut canned pineapple rings into pieces, drained a can of mandarin oranges, andd measured out a 1/4 cup of blueberries. Travis loved helping rinse all the fruits!

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We lined these up in a rainbow row – and needed to taste some fruit, of course.

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The recipe instructions suggested several ways to top our tartlets. First, we made a classic rainbow, of course.

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The second version featured a pattern shape, sort of like a star.

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For the third we made a glaze: microwave 2 tablespoons jelly with 1 tablespoon water for 30 seconds, and brush over the tart.

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For the final tart, we stacked the fruit up to add height to it.

 

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They looked so pretty all together!

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As we dined, we colored in the Rainbow Challenge card that came with this month’s kit – how many days will it take Travis to fill in his rainbow?

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Thanks to this dessert, he already had one mark for every color.

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Update: It took about 11 days for Travis to fill in his full rainbow – quite a proud accomplishment!

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Play the Pots and Pans

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A few days ago, the family formed an impromptu band and entertained Veronika. Today it was her turn to play! Make sure your child is sitting comfortably for this game; if he or she can’t sit unsupported yet, add a pillow so there’s no falling over near the “drums”!

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I set out a few small pots, and gave her a variety of tools with which she could make percussive sounds. We had fun testing the differences between each one.

The whisk was soft but very metallic.

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The wooden spoon made a fun boom boom.

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You can even hit the pans with a baby rattle or plastic spoon! And of course I demonstrated simply drumming with my hand.

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In all honesty, Veronika had way more fun putting each item in her mouth than drumming with them.

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But she looked so pleased every time she made a sound by accident.

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Drum drum drum!

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Invisible Graffiti

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Let’s face it: Kids are sometimes drawn to things that are taboo, and sometimes it’s good to have an outlet for that naughtiness…but without the consequences!

That’s where this adorable game fits in, allowing kids to have the thrill of painting “graffiti,” but without any visible evidence.

First, I cut an artist’s palette for Travis out of cardboard.

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Paint on circles of color (ideally in as many colors of the rainbow as you can) using nail polish. This will make the “paint” look shiny even once it dries.

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I let Travis have a second piece of cardboard and permission to paint with the nail polish, because this was an added element of fun.

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(Note: I love the shades from the No Miss brand, which are free of all the yucky stuff like formaldehyde and also cruelty-free.

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Now it was time to set my graffiti artist loose! We headed out in the morning sunshine to make trouble. Here he is heading over to paint the fence.

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Travis “painted” all over the bushes, and the patio.

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Can’t you just see the glee?

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He loved finding places to add his graffiti.

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Uh oh, littering!

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In sum, he had a blast getting his naughtiness out with this game. And the best part is that there is no mess left over.