Saturday, September 28, 2013

Story Themed Lunches

Boogs' lunches are inspired by the books we read at bedtime the previous evening. Each night, Boogs reads one book to me and I read a book or a chapter of a book to him. I usually post his lunches once a week. Click on the "lunches" label at the end of this post to see lunches from previous weeks. We like to pack our lunches in ELBs and Laptop Lunchboxes.

Pirates Don't Change Diapers by Melinda Long
In the sequel to How I Became A Pirate, Jeremy Jacob is surprised by a visit from Captain Braid Beard and his crew. Jeremy Jacob enlists the pirates help to take care of his little sister who has woken up from her nap. Oh what a mess when the pirates try to change a diaper and take care of Bonney Anne! Later in the day, Bonnie Anne sneaks off and eats part of Captain Braid Beard's treasure map. Luckily, Jeremy Jacob was able to locate the hidden treasure in his back yard. Boogs really enjoyed looking at the illustrations in this book. He also said he is glad he does not have to take care of any little sisters.

 Pirates at the Plate by Aaron Frisch
A baseball game between pirates and cowboys is quite a sight. Famous players, like Bluebeard and Wild Bill Hickok, battle it out in a fierce game of ball with cannons blasting and lassos swinging. The story is peppered with puns. In the Laptop lunchbox: Boogs decided he wanted to have leftover pizza in the pirate lunch, so we turned the pizza into a baseball field with black olive players. Also in the lunch - mango gold, Pirate's Booty, lasso & rope Chex Mix, carrot bats, and tomato balls.

 Zen Shorts by Jon J. Muth

Stillwater, the panda, meets three neighborhood children and shares Zen stories with them to help them focus on the way they view the world around them. The three stories Stillwater told really gave Boogs and I good conversation starters about luck, anger, and charity. Boogs favorite lesson was summed up by the character of Micheal, "Maybe good luck and bad luck are all mixed up. You never know what will happen." Boogs related this to his teeth. He said, "This is true with my teeth. It is bad luck that they hurt and bleed when they are loose but really good luck when the tooth fairy leaves money." The message in the last story Stillwater told was that carrying around anger towards another person can steal your own happiness. Boogs and I both enjoyed this Caldecott Honor book. In the lunchbox:  Stillwater johnny cake, banana slices with panda pick, blueberry water with panda pick, cottage cheese with red star umbrella.

Raccoon on His Own by Jim Arnosky
A little raccoon was out eating breakfast with his family when he discovered an old canoe. He climbed inside and soon found himself adrift in the swampy waters. The little boat carried the raccoon downstream. Little raccoon saw many swamp creature swimming and floating by his canoe. In the background of the pictures, mother raccoon is seen keeping a watchful eye on little raccoon during his adventure. Eventually, the canoe bumps against the shore and little raccoon discovers that his mother has followed him downstream. This was a sweet little book. In the ELB lunchbox: raccoon boiled egg, cheese sun, ham swamp water, Goldfish crackers, swamp flowers & foliage salad, and plum crawfish.

We also had a boring, throw some stuff into a lunchbox lunch this week. There are some mornings when I have no creative ideas for Boogs' lunch. This was one of them. In the Laptop lunchbox: salami, Goldfish crackers, strawberries, raisins, carrots, Babybel cheese, and yogurt.

Be sure to check out the wonderful sites I link to on my sidebar! If you want to see more book inspired lunches, click on the "lunches" label at the end of this post or go to My Story Themed Lunches board on Pinterest. I would love for you to leave a comment to let me know you stopped by.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Redneck Party

My husband decided he wanted to have a redneck party. What a fun theme for a party! One guest commented that she was disappointed with the food. She said, "The food is great for the redneck theme, but I didn't eat before I came over because you always make such delicious food for your parties." The food I served for the party was more fun than delicious.

I was surprised at how much people liked the watermelon on a stick. Behind the watermelon, were chips, pork rinds, crackers and spray cheese. I was surprised by how many people tried the spray cheese on top of the pork rinds.
 I made little signs for some of the food.
Our guests got a kick out of the toilet paper silverware holders. I also decided to use leftover party napkins and fast food napkins.
As guests entered, they were directed to the "Build Your Own Wine Glass" craft station. Whew, saved me the trouble of putting the bottoms onto all of those little plastic wine glasses. We had a ring toss game out just for fun.
 How can you have a redneck party without pigs in a blanket?
I made taco salad and only put lettuce and tomato on half so guests could choose to have or not have veggies.
 There were prizes for first and last place.

 And, of course, there were  costumes.

The focus on my point-and-shoot camera is getting a bit iffy. Sometimes it works and sometimes it does not. I really liked how this picture turned out. Sadly, many of the pictures were not in focus.

This post is linked to Truly Lovely's Fancy This Fridays linky party.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Strep Throat Blues

I have to admit that I feel bad about last weekend. Boogs and I had a great time on our photo scavenger hunt. He seemed to be feeling fine except for saying he had a "scratchy" throat. After our morning outing, we went out to lunch. Boogs barely ate a thing. When we got back home, he helped his dad clean the back porch, and weed the yard. He seemed to be moving slower and slower.

I thought he was moving slower because he did not want to work in the yard. I talked with him about getting his work finished so he could go on an outing with his dad. He then started crying and saying that his throat hurt so bad he could not swallow. Poor little guy. I looked in his throat and it was horribly red and speckled. He wanted to finish his weeding because he is saving up for a Skylander character. I gave him Tylenol and a cough drop and told him we would call the doctor's office as soon as it opened the next morning. The doctor confirmed that he has strep throat. We stayed home and rested for two days. It was the first time Boogs has ever missed a day of school.

Boogs started feeling better within about 12 hours of being on antibiotics. That made the extra day at home less restful. I came up with a semi-calm activity to entertain Boogs and keep him from running around too much.

We built a maze for Boogs' hamster. We put two sunflower seeds and a golden raisin at one end of the maze and a "secret window" opening at the other. Boogs and I tried to guess which she would try first - grab the treat or escape the maze?
Winter, the hamster, ran right past the secret window and over to the treats. She ate one sunflower seed and stuffed the other sunflower seed and raisin into her cheek.
Once her treats were secured, Winter wasted no time locating the secret escape window.
We stuffed towels under the linen closet door, closet door, and bedroom door so Winter could not escape from the bathroom.
She seemed to really enjoy running all over the place and we had fun watching her. Boogs is ready to build an even bigger maze.
The one good thing to come out of Boog's strep throat... he actually wanted to go back to school on Wednesday.

Talk Like A Pirate Day Hop

Ahoy there mateys! Welcome to the Bento Bloggers and Friends Talk Like A Pirate Day Blog Hop! It's true, there are two hops today. My pirate lunches belong to the Black Bread's Revenge Pirate Ship o' lunches. After you look at my lunches, click on the pirate flag to  make passage to the next lunch in the hop at Feeling A Little Lunchy. 

My son's lunches are inspired by the stories we read together. We have read many pirate books during the past couple of weeks. These are the books we chose to use for our pirate lunches:

Backbeard and the Birthday Suit: The Hairiest Pirate Who Ever Lived and Backbeard: Pirate for Hire by Matthew McElligott

Backbeard was the hairiest, smelliest, dirtiest, meanest pirate to sail the seas. For his birthday, he and his crew got into an all out brawl. Backbeard's pirate clothes were ruined. When he went to town to find replacements, none were available. He ended up with a new suit of colorful and dandy clothes with a straw hat and a pig to replace his escaped parrot. Eventually, his crew accepted his new look. In the sequel, Pirate for Hire, the Pirate Council called Backbeard to a meeting to remove him from his ship for not following the Pirate Handbook Rules for proper dress. Backbeard tried to find new employment. He was too smelly to work with the fish, too strong to work with the blacksmith, and too ornery to work in the tea room passing out cucumber sandwiches. He cleverly found a way to force the Pirate Council to reinstate him as a pirate.

Boogs enjoyed the sequel much more than the first book. He said the Birthday Suit story had great pictures but not enough of a plot. He thought the second book had a good plot. Boogs' lunch was inspired by parts of both stories.
In the Laptop Lunchbox: turkey & swiss cheese in a pumpernickel Backbeard sandwich with a pig pick on his shoulder, Pirate's Booty, smelly Goldfish Crackers, marshmallow Pirate Handbook, cucumber & dressing for the cucumber sandwiches, and plums with a properly attired pirate.

Roger, The Jolly Pirate by Brett Helquist
Ever wonder how the skull and crossbones became known as the Jolly Roger. In this book, Brett Helquist explains exactly how that happened. Roger was a cheerful and bumbling pirate who annoyed the other pirates on the ship. When battle broke out, the crew locked Roger in the hold to keep him out of the way. Roger wanted to do something to make the crew like him. So he decided to bake them a cake with the ingredients he found down in the hold. Once again, Roger bumbled. He concocted an explosive mix inside a cannon. Roger was blown straight through the ship's deck. He was covered in flour and soot and looked just like a walking, talking, screaming skeleton. He scared the admiral's men away and saved the pirate ship. The crew adopted a new flag with Jolly Roger's floured face on it to put fear into the hearts of other sailors. 

In the Easylunchbox: Roger drawn on cheese holding cucmber "JOLLY ROGER" letters, Pirate's Booty, salad with carrot coins, raisins, dried apricots, and a fruit leather Jolly Roger skull.

Henry & the Buccaneer Bunnies by Carol Crimi
Flashback: This is the lunch Boogs had last year for Talk Like A Pirate Day.  In the ELB lunchbox: pb&j Pirate Henry reading "Storm At Sea" pita chip book, pirate Goldfish, cheese rabbit jolly roger flag on top of a salad, berries for the color of the sky during the storm, and a Ring Pop pirate treasure.

Now that you have seen the bounty of bento lunches here ye must sail on over to Feeling a Little Lunchy to peruse more of Black Bread's Revenge bounty. Just click on the flag to make yer trip.

Once you have completed the Black Bread's Revenge hop and returned to this page, I am sure you will want to see the fantastic lunches on board The Flying Lunchman. Just click the HERE and you'll soon return to BBF harbor to board The Flying Lunchman portion of the Bento Bloggers and Friends Talk Like A Pirate Day hop. Thanks for sailing the Bento Bloggers & Friends lunch ships today.

Be sure to check out the wonderful sites I link to on my sidebar! If you want to see more book inspired lunches, click on the "lunches" label at the end of this post or go to My Story Themed Lunches board on Pinterest. I would love for you to leave a comment to let me know you stopped by.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Picture Scavenger Hunt

Coombe Mill has a wonderful weekly link party called Country Kids from Coombe Mill. Each week, many bloggers from around the world show outdoor activities their children are participating in. A couple of weeks ago, Time To Craft, linked an outdoor photo challenge activity she put together for her kids. It was such a great idea, I had to copy it.

Boogs and I decided to go to the park on Sunday morning. We sat down together and came up with a list of things we thought Boogs might be able to capture with his camera. On his list were: bird, dog, insect, the colors of the rainbow, a smooth stone, an unusual shape, a playscape, a bumpy tree, water, and a naturally formed letter.

Then, Boogs was off on his photo scavenger hunt. He looked so cute trying to find every thing on his list.

Here is what he found:

Animals/Insects: birds, dog, butterfly, and bee.
 Colors: red, green, pink, purple
Textures/Shape: letter "Y" in tree roots, unusual blue shaped swing (looks like an alien from this angle), bumpiest tree, smooth stone, water, water drops.

Boogs had a wonderful time on this scavenger hunt. Then we spent another hour or so on the playground and trails.

Thanks, Time To Craft, for the great idea.

This post is linked to:
Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

Friday, September 13, 2013

Roald Dahl Day Blog Hop 
Bento Bloggers & Friends are celebrating Roald Dahl's birthday with a Roald Dahl Day blog hop. By clicking on the red Roald Dahl Day button at the end of this post, you can hop over to the next Bento Bloggers & Friends special lunch based on one of Dahl's books. The button will appear on each blog in the hop. I can't wait to hop through all 13 blogs!

I grew up reading the fun, strange, and slightly creepy stories written by Roald Dahl. Now, my son is enjoying them. Most people are familiar with Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and James and the Giant Peach, but Roald Dahl wrote many other children's books. Here are two of the ones that Boogs (my 7-year-old son) and I enjoyed:

The Giraffe And The Pelly And Me
In this story, a young boy notices there is work being done on the old Grubber Candy Shop. A sign says it is becoming the LWCCo, the Ladderless Window Cleaning Company. Billy hangs around the shop until he meets the new owners - a giraffe who can extend his neck, a pelican who can retract his beak, and a monkey who is an astonishingly fast window washer. When a wealthy Duke wants to hire LWCCo, Billy tags along and shows them the way to the Duke's house. While there, the LWCCo manages to wash windows and save the Duchess's jewels from  the most dangerous cat burglar in the world. The Duke rewards everyone for helping save the jewels. The giraffe gets an orchard of tinkle-tinkle trees whose pink flowers are the only kind of food the giraffe can eat. The monkey receives access to thousands of walnut trees. Pelly the pelican receives access to the finest salmon river in all of Europe. Billy's only want is to have the candy shop back. The Duke rebuilds the candy shop and gives it to Billy. It was a happy ending for all.

In the EasyLunchbox: 
Almond butter & jelly sandwich. 
The giraffe, monkey, pelican, and Billy are drawn on cheese with black food coloring.
Candy ring for the Duchess' jewels. (Boogs had to save this for after school)
Grapes for the amazingly sweet candy in Billy's new candy shop.
Goldfish crackers for Pelly's salmon.
Carrots and tomatoes topped with radish flowers for Giraffe's tinkle-tinkle trees.
Almonds for Monkey's favorite food - nuts.

The Enormous Crocodile
The Enormous Crocodile in this story has a craving to eat some fat, juicy, little children. He tells all the jungle animals that he has "secret plans and clever tricks" to get the children. Boogs had fun guessing what each clever trick would be. The crocodile disguises himself as a coconut tree, a seesaw in a park, a merry-go-round animal, and a picnic table bench. Each time he almost has a child in his jaws, one of the jungle animals alerts the children of his presence. Finally, the elephant had enough of the croc's horrid ways and threw the crocodile all the way up into the sun. The crocodile banged into the sun and was "sizzled up like a sausage". Boogs said, "Oh when the sausage pieces of the crocodile fall back to earth, the children can eat him up in a stew." I asked Boogs if he thought this book was too creepy. He said, "No, it is not any creepier than Hansel and Gretel."

In the Laptop Lunchbox:
Spinach tortilla, hummus, and cheese Enormous Crocodile
Sunbutter and jelly elephant throwing the crocodile to the sun
Cheese sun with a dark spot where the crocodile sizzled
Almonds for the monkey
Licorice bits for the tail feathers the crocodile bit off of the Roly-Poly Bird
Spinach for the palm tree disguise
Grapes to represent all of the children saved by the kind jungle animals

Now that you have seen my Roald Dahl lunches, click the Roald Dahl Day button to hop over to see Robot Squirrel and the Monkeys' creation for Roald Dahl Day.

Be sure to check out the wonderful sites I link to on my sidebar! If you want to see more book inspired lunches, click on the "lunches" label at the end of this post or go to My Story Themed Lunches board on Pinterest. I would love for you to leave a comment to let me know you stopped by.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Lunches Sept. 9th - 12th

Boogs' lunches are inspired by the books we read at bedtime the previous evening. Each night, Boogs reads one book to me and I read a book or a chapter of a book to him. I usually post his lunches once a week. Click on the "lunches" label at the end of this post to see lunches from previous weeks. We like to pack our lunches in ELBs and Laptop Lunchboxes.

Skylanders Giants Master Eon's Official Guide Book
Boogs saw the Wii Skylander game at a friend's house last year. He has talked about it ever since then. He even picked this guide for his "back-to-school new book" tradition. Two weeks ago, my husband let Boogs spend his own money to buy the Skylander game. Now, that boy is obsessed! We are really having to enforce our time limits for technology. I made Boogs a Jet Vac lunch. Jet Vac's personality file states that he is self-sacrificing, noble, compassionate, and daring. Unfortunately, Boogs' favorite character is called Trigger Happy. During the game, you have to collect jewels, health, points, and other things. I tried to put these things into Boogs' lunch. Over a year ago, Karen from showed me how to easily get a character outline on bread. You can see her picture tutorial HERE.

In the ELB Lunchbox: almond butter & jelly Jet Vac sandwich (drawn with food coloring), JET VAC letters in swiss cheese on top of dried apricots, pistachios for health, blueberries for points, salad with carrot circles and radish diamonds for jewels. 

This lunch is linked to Lunchbox Dad's Throwback Thursday Link-up.

Awesome Dawson by Chris Gall
Boogs said this book really was awesome. We read it several times during the week we had it checked out from the library. Dawson was born to be an inventor. He collected things people had thrown away and used them to create new inventions. Boogs thought the idea of this book (recycle/reuse) reminded him of The Dumpster Diver by Janet S. Wong. He said, "This book is like the dumpster book we read but this one is way more awesome. Dawson turns his stuff into neat inventions where the dumpster diver just turned it into normal stuff like an old tv into an aquarium or art. I like how Dawson made moving robots." I get so excited when Boogs makes connections between the books we have read.

In the Laptop Lunchbox: Babybel Dawson, ham pliers, tomato bit of metal, boiled egg car for the car Dawson invented for his parents, Chex Mix nuts & bolts, apple slices, and broccoli.

Cream of Creature from the School Cafeteria by Mike Thaler
Mike Thaler wrote the Black Lagoon series of books. Boogs loves that series because they are slightly creepy. Cream of Creature was also slightly creepy. The nasty green glop in the school cafeteria develops a life of its own and starts consuming everything in its path. The cook, principal, police, and army can not stop it. The creature begins to eat the school until one brave and hungry kid stands up to it. Boogs really enjoyed reading this book to me.

In the ELB lunchbox: spinach torellini with pesto & sausage creature, green pluot glop, carrots with hummus, and lumpy cottage cheese.

Pig Pig Goes to Camp by David M. McPhail
Pig Pig heads off to camp for the first time and loves it. The only problem is that he makes too many friends. Pig Pig befriends all of the wild frogs at camp. The frogs begin to follow him around everywhere, even to the dining hall. The head of the camp decides it would be best if Pig Pig and his new friends would leave the camp. Boogs laughed at the picture of Pig Pig arriving home on a bus full of frogs. 

In the ELB lunchbox: garlic baloney & cheese Pig Pig made with the CuteZcute cutter, frog drawn on marshmallow on top of pistachios, camp fire log puffs, plum fish in a blueberry lake, and a dragonfly pick flying across a salad.

Be sure to check out the wonderful sites I link to on my sidebar! If you want to see more book inspired lunches, click on the "lunches" label at the end of this post or go to My Story Themed Lunches board on Pinterest. I would love for you to leave a comment to let me know you stopped by. This post is linked to Truly Lovely's Fancy This Fridays linky party.