Celebrate Valentines Day With Raspberry Monkey Bread and Curious George

My two year old, Amelie, loves to help me in the kitchen. Cooking, baking, cleaning, it doesn’t matter, she just wants to help!  I’ve been surfing Pinterest, looking for easy Valentine’s Day recipes to make with her. There are a ton of great ideas, but I wanted something *just right*.

Then, last week, I heard PBS was coming out with a brand new Valentine’s Day episode of Curious George. And that’s when it hit me – Monkey Bread! It’s quick, easy for even little hands, and it will go along with watching our favorite monkey!

Raspberry Monkey Bread

This ooey gooey creation was a hit with the whole family! My husband said it tasted like an inside-out jelly doughnut, and that’s a very good thing around here. I liked it because it’s easy to convert to dairy free or not, and you can easily switch up the flavors by changing the fruit filling.  Next time, I’m going for strawberry rhubarb.

Raspberry Monkey Bread

Serves 8-10
Prep time 10 minutes
Cook time 45 minutes
Total time 55 minutes
Dietary Vegan, Vegetarian
Meal type Bread, Dessert
Misc Child Friendly
Occasion Valentines day
Gooey and delicious Raspberry Monkey Bread. Quick and easy to make. Kids love it.

Ingredients

  • 3 7.5oz Cans Refrigerated biscuits (these are small biscuits)
  • 1 3.4oz Box Instant vanilla pudding
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1 15oz Can Red raspberry pie filling
  • 1/3 cup Orange juice

Directions

Step 1 Preheat the oven to 350 and oil your bundt pan.
Step 2 In a medium bowl, combine the instant pudding mix and cinnamon.
Step 3 Cut each individual biscuit into quarters. Add the pieces to the pudding/cinnamon mixture and toss until well coated.
Step 4 Add the pie filling and orange juice. Stir gently until well combined, taking care not to mash the biscuit pieces.
Step 5 Evenly spread the mixture into the bundt pan.
Step 6 Bake for 40-50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Step 7 Cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto a serving tray.

Easy, right??

Whip up some raspberry monkey bread, cuddle with the ones you love, and enjoy the new episode Happy Valentine’s Day, George!.  It airs February 9th and sounds like it will be a great episode, chock full of George’s usual antics.

Curious Geoege

In “Happy Valentine’s Day, George,” Curious George wants to make his friends the best Valentine’s Day card ever, but even with four paws, it takes a long time to create homemade cards for everyone. Using sponge shapes, red paint, and a waffle iron, George creates the first ever monkey Valentine’s printing press!

I wonder if Hundley the Dachshund will be in this episode? He’s another favorite of ours.

Do you watch Curious George with your children?  Do you have a favorite episode or character?


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Things Left Undone

It’s Christmas Eve.

Presents are still unwrapped.

No twinkling lights adorn our home.

Not a single Christmas card has yet been sent.

The nativity scene was never set up.  In fact, most of our decorations are still in the storage box.

And I’m okay with that, with things left undone.

Winter Fun

Maybe it’s my age. Maybe I’ve become disillusioned with the “magic” of Christmas.  Or maybe it’s that the true meaning of Christmas has settled comfortably on my heart. Whatever it is, I realize the things left undone aren’t always worth doing.

Don’t get me wrong.  I LOVE Christmas lights, and cards, and pretty bows. When I can do those things, I relish them. But there are seasons when everything – just. cannot. get. done. – and I no longer allow these things to suck the joy out of Christmas.

Every single thing left undone means time was spent doing something else. And I make sure the something elses matter. Baking cookies with the kids, watching Christmas movies, playing in the snow, cuddling by the fire.  Doing. Together.

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas! Don’t let the things left undone, or the doing of too many things, steal your joy this season.

Christmas is a celebration. Celebrate!

I Resolve

Here I am again.  New Year.  Eyeing 2013 with all the hope and promise of a newborn baby.  I love hope, it’s such a beautiful gift…no matter what trials we face, all is not lost until we lose hope.  The faintest hope (which I feel is related to faith the size of a mustard seed) will give us the strength to weather the storm.

What a year was 2012.  Lots of stress, lots.  Both good and bad stress.

Good – pregnancy and all that goes with it.  A new baby – beautiful and sweet and more wonderful than I deserve.  The successful hosting of my first conference in which many hearts were blessed, marriges strengthened and blogs grown.  Bad – financial woes, a broken fridge and dishwasher, a totaled van, the deaths of 3 grandparents, a hospitalization of that sweet baby with a kidney infection, and more…but let’s not dwell on all that.

Yes, I think I was correct when I considered naming 2012 “Year Craptastica“.  It was a challenging year, the most challenging we’ve had in a very long time.

But in all the difficulty, God saw us through.  He never let us down, not once, and showed up in many surprising ways.  It was all Redeemed.  And I am thankful.

So, as I look toward 2013 I can’t help but wonder, what will this year hold?  Part of me is fearful, the other part is so full of bursting hope I can hardly contain myself.  I’m no longer niave enough to think this year, this month, this moment, will be without challenges.  It’s only January 2nd and I’ve already had to shout “Get thee behind me Satan” on more than one occasion.  Even so, I hope.

This fresh start is ahead of us – a year of fresh snow, untrodden.  May the footprints I add to the landscape be positive, helpful, for the good.

As for what I’m going to name this year…I don’t think I’m going to do that this time.  I’ve done a yearly theme for quite some time and this year, I think I’m ready for resolutions once again.  So here they are, my 2013 resolutions in order of priority:  In 2013…

I resolve to make the most of the time with my eldest, Fox.  He will be 17 in March, and I will too soon have to turn him over to adulthood.

I resolve to strive to be the wife and mom I want to be with well laid priorities and a strict schedule for my online time, and to adhere to that schedue so that my relationship with my husband and all the children can flourish.

I resolve to become debt-free.  We will no lomger be a slave to bills, we will be free to follow God’s calling.

I resolve to continue to lose weight until I reach my goal weight of 135lbs, and to maintain that weight within +/-3lbs.

This is what I resolve.