I'd like to start blogging more frequently. It's just when I sit down to do it, I think of all the way cool things I've just read on my RSS feed (Google Reader is either a wonder or it is my bane...). Anyway, I sit down to post and I feel like I really have nothing to add. So I've been thinking about something that is unique to me, something that I do that you probably wouldn't read on any of the cool crafty-mom network of blogs, something that I could contribute. And I think I've come up with a solution. I'm gonna do a by-weekly post on my little book clubs and the funky themed snacks I bring! (As long as the book and snack is worthy of writing about and as long as I have the drive to keep at it, that is.) It's something that I have a fabulous time doing, plus I always put a lot of research into it, so who knows? It may be helpful to someone else doing a book club. Hope you think it is a fun as I do!
So, I host two book groups at a local library - a third grade club and a fourth grade one, too. (They used to be combined, but it just got too big - like 28 kids at a time, big. SCARY.) I do one every two weeks, so that I don't lose my mind.
My last group was this past Monday, the fourth graders, and the book we read was Ragweed by Avi. It's the prequel to the famous Poppy series and is a cute little story about a country mouse who leaves the nest and goes to the city. (I can identify with him!) This story starts off a bit slow, but eventually you get introduced to a funky green-haired skateboarding chick mouse named Clutch, and the party begins. The evil villain is a fat white cat who wants things to "return to the good ole days" and has plans to exterminate the rodent problem in her city. Well, la dee-da! This is a decent read for fourth graders; they all seemed to enjoy it once they got into it. Who doesn't enjoy skateboarding mice that play in a rock band?!?
Onto the snack... This is a big part of the fun. I always try to made something wonky for them as a special reward for reading the book and for coming. It's kinda a big deal and it seems to make their day, too. At my last group, we read The Chocolate Touch and I made some chocolate-covered bananas and some fudge. One boy was biting into his banana and he gasped and looked at me and said, "Amazing." I think I almost cried. Let's get one thing straight about me, NOBODY ever says that about my cooking. This is why I go overboard for these kids. They make me feel like a million bucks.
And so, without further ado, here is what I served my fourth graders. They went nuts. I didn't have any leftovers. Not even cheese. The mice are peanut butter cookies with M&M ears, tiny semi-sweet morsel eyes, and candy sprinkle noses with licorice tails. I got the recipe here and if I was to make them again, I'd want to think of ways to maybe make them somehow creamier. (To any of you seasoned cooks out there, any suggestions?) Otherwise, they turned out pretty decent. Here's to another success.