I told you there would be a new challenge for the summer and here it is.
What if we don’t have a lot of spare money this summer but we still want to have fun and have something to tell our friends about when we go back to school in the fall?
We can’t afford to go on vacation this year. I lost my job in this economy and Marc had to take a pay-cut in order to keep his job. With Spencer going to college in the fall, money has become tighter than my pre-pregnancy jeans.
The best we can come up with is that Marc is taking a subset of the kids to his parent’s lake house for a few days while I stay home and supervise the kids who will be working jobs.
So how do we keep the 6 kids (ages 17 -9) entertained? How do we still have fun and give them memories on which to report those first few days back at school in the fall? I want something other than “I watched TV” written on their “What I did for Summer vacation” essays.
Ever the thinker, I went to good ‘ol Barnes and Nobles and picked out a few food magazines. I came home, laid them out on the floor and asked the kids to go through them and decide which one had the food they would most likely want to try. (A highly scientific approach – I know)
They rifled through the magazines throwing out comments like “this magazine is too small”, “This one doesn’t have a picture of each recipe, I’m not gonna eat anything if I don’t know what it looks like” and simply – “yuk”.
After awhile, and with a bit more discussion “Mom – what’s an anchovy?”, they unanimously chose the Food Network Magazine June/July Issue. (Sorry Martha – Food Network had an unfair advantage with that unbelievable burger on the cover.)
There are 67 recipes listed in the magazine with a picture of each final creation. So here’s our challenge. During the summer we are going to recreate each recipe as best we can. The goal is to complete all 67 recipes during the course of June and July.
We’re going to see if the recipes are really doable and we’ll have pictures of our final creations to compare them with the magazine’s. This is going to be a family event with total involvement. The kids will help figure out what we need to purchase and they will help in the making of each recipe.
They’ll learn about food cost per recipe, measurements, and a little bit about truth in advertising. It will be a challenge from which we can learn – imagine that.
We’re also going to find out if the pickiest eaters in the world (I’m talking to you Logan and Addy) will be willing to at least try some new foods.
It’s my hope that although we won’t be able to travel this summer, we’ll still have fun staying at home. If this project shows up on at least a few of the back to school essays, then I will consider it quite the success.
Finally, as a note, although the editors at Food Network Magazine are aware of this challenge, it is in no way endorsed or sponsored by them. (It can’t be – when we get to the recipe with the anchovies I’m not sure they are going to like what they hear.)