Bouncing Monkey

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What’s not to love about the Five Little Monkeys rhyme? It’s educational (counting), involves a cautionary tale (don’t jump on the bed!), has fun rhythm and words, and… there’s bouncing!

Today, Veronika and I did exactly what the rhyme cautions not to: bouncing on the bed! I supported her firmly and bounced her up and down as I recited the words, enlisting big brother’s help to capture the huge grin on her face.

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For extra fun, we added props! Our book of the rhyme has touch-and-feel elements on the monkey’s faces, and I added a phone so we could “call” the doctor whenever we reached that line.

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Even more fun was bouncing along a stuffed monkey friend, to make the verse come alive for her.

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In case you need a refresher, here are the words:

Five little monkeys bouncing on the bed.

One fell of and bumped his head.

Mama called the doctor and the doctor said,

“No more monkey business bouncing on the bed!”.

Repeat with four monkeys, then three, then two, then one. Then no more monkeys!

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Old-Fashioned Apple Slump

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It’s apple picking season and we recently returned home with a bounty of ginger golds from a local orchard! It was the perfect opportunity to test out a recipe near and dear to my heart.

The recipe comes from Louisa May Alcott, known to many as the author of Little Women. Alcott lived in my hometown, and her story and life have always been an inspiration. So when we recently attended a local apple festival and brought home the recipe, Travis and I couldn’t wait to find out what an 1800’s apple dessert tasted like! We updated it slightly for a modern kitchen and vegan lifestyle.

Ingredients:

  • 6 tart apples
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¬†1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 and 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 Ener-G eggs
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 6 tablespoons melted Earth Balance butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  1. To prepare the apple base, peel, core, and slice the apples. Place in a bowl and stir in the lemon juice and vanilla. Add the brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt, stirring until the apples are coated.
  2. Spoon into a 9×13-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, prepare the topping: In a bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, Ener-G eggs, milk, and butter, stirring gently until combined.
  4. Pour the flour mixture over the apples, spreading slightly, and sprinkle evenly with the walnuts. Bake an additional 25 minutes.

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Chimichurri Sandwiches

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I first made chimichurri sauce as an adult, and couldn’t help but marvel that Travis has been introduced to this vibrant green sauce at only five years old, thanks to his Comida Argentina Raddish Kids! Instead of steak, use meaty portobello mushrooms and roasted bell peppers for a vegan take on the classic.

To start, we made the chimichurri. I love that Raddish’s recipe cards are so visual, which means my non-reader can follow along. Smash 3 garlic cloves (mommy step), peel the cloves (Travis step) and add to a blender.

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Next, cut the stems from 1 bunch parsley and 1 bunch cilantro. Travis wanted a taste of each before we added to the blender!

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Add 2 teaspoons dried oregano, 3/4 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup water, 1/3 cup red wine vinegar, and 1 teaspoon salt.

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Process until smooth and refrigerate until ready to serve.

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To prepare the sandwiches, remove the stems from 2 portobello mushrooms caps. Cut 2 red bell peppers into quarters.

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Arrange the vegetables on a baking sheet lined with foil. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon black pepper and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Roast at 450 degrees F for 20 minutes.

Spread chimichurri generously on sandwich buns or rolls.

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Top with the mushroom and bell pepper strips and serve!

It was fun for Travis to learn more about Argentina as we dined. The kit included a great map of Argentine geography to color code, as well as facts Latin American literature and the history of asado (Argentine barbecue). We skipped an actual scavenger hunt for Argentine ingredients at the grocery store because so many of them were meat products, but went over what the items were at home!

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