October 25, 2009

Monkey Tray!

Okay, I know this isn't a recipe, but it still fits in with Sunday Sides and Suppers. This is what we had for dinner last night.

I've been using the Stumble It button a lot in the past few weeks in addition to googling ideas for this, that, and the other for the coming holidays. (I'm getting a slight case of holiday fever thanks to FlyLady's "Cruising Through The Holidays" emails. Expect more on Christmas preparation later.) Anyway, I came across this one mother's blog where she talked about a long ago trip to the zoo with her children. They arrived just in time to see the monkey's being fed. The zoo keeper brought out a huge tray filled with cut up fruits, vegetables, nuts, and meats, and all the monkeys ate what they wanted from the tray. When they got home, they made their own version and all ate it for lunch. It was such a huge hit, the children dubbed the "dish" a monkey tray, and they have continued the tradition throughout the last decade.

Unfortunately, I forgot to hit bookmark or like before I hit stumble again since the mouse cursor was still over the stumble button, and I was rather tired at the time. I've been looking for the site again to give credit where credit is due, but sadly I've been unable to find the post again. If anyone knows which one I'm talking about, please let me know, so I can credit her for the idea.

Anyway, I might have forgotten to bookmark the page, but the idea of a monkey tray stuck with me. So, last night we made up our own for Hubby, Boo, Sneak, and me to share. Then we picked up the various books the girls had strewn over the living room floor, threw down a big blanket, and all settled in to watch a movie together while sharing the big tray of fruit, veggies, cheese, and yes, even a few extra marshmallows. (I'm experimenting with writing a new holiday candy recipe, and they would have gone stale otherwise.)

The girls loved it! Hubby and I loved the fact they tried new things without the old back and forth. Well, once they discovered combining different stuff together was allowed anyway. Celery with bits of cheese or raisins crammed in the groove were a new favorite.

Sneak loved the freedom to choose from the exact same stuff everyone else was eating. She still only has eight teeth, the incisors and nothing else, so biting off bits is easy, but chewing is a bit trickier. She managed to get enough to eat between the cheese, raisins, just a couple marshmallows, and apples. Thought I have to say, my favorite image of the night is her sitting with an apple slice in one hand and a celery stick in the other, trying to decide which one to gnaw on.

So, how big a success was the "monkey tray" idea last night? See for yourself.

The bits in the corner and once celery stick are the expected pieces Sneak munched on but couldn't get small enough to swallow. We were very happy we decided on using a blanket roughly the size of our living room floor. Clean up was much easier than I thought it would be.

Hubby's requested sliced up bits of smoked sausage next time we do this. I want some wheat crackers, and maybe a nice peanut butter dip for the fruit. Boo wants peppers.

I suppose we'll just have to do this again.

1 comment:

  1. This reminds me of one of our favorite after church Sunday night dinners: Popcorn, cheese, apple slices, bite sized hot dog or smoked sausage.