APPLES APPLES APPLES!!!

I absolutely love fall.  It is my favorite time of the year.  Crisp air, beautiful colors, jeans and sweatshirts, chili and noodles (yes, noodles!), AND trips to the apple orchard.  So our theme for this past week was Apples.  I probably went a little overboard on the activities, but Aedan didn’t complain.  Not all weeks will be this full, but we both had a great time!

  • APPLES DISCUSSION: where do apples grow, colors of apples
  • APPLE TASTING:  I bought 3 different kinds of apples; Golden Delicious (yellow), Honey Crisp (red), and Granny Smith (green).  I cut the apples in half vertically and used just one half for this.  We talked about what they tasted like, Which color was sweet or sour, And what our favorite one was.

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  • APPLE PRINTS:  Using the uneaten half of the apples we made apple prints!  We dipped the apples in white paint (apple flesh is white, which is why I chose white paint) and made prints of the apple on corresponding colored paper.
  • CRITTER APPLE FEEDERS:  After we made our apple prints we washed the white (non-toxic) paint off and dried them.  I tied fishing line around the apple and stem and left about 2 feet to tie onto our tree outside.  Aedan helped me spread peanut butter on the fleshy part, we then pressed them onto a plate full of sunflowers seeds and then tied them onto one of our trees outside.  Something certainly liked them because the next morning they were completely gone!  I wish I had pictures to share, but I was in the middle of making dinner, doing this project and Audrey was awake — so you probably can guess how that went.
  • MAKING APPLE MUFFINS: Delicious!  Aedan helped measure, pour, and stir (and of course lick the spoon and taste our finished product when it was still a little too hot!)

2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups finely chopped peeled granny smith apples
1 cup low-fat buttermilk
1/3 cup 2% low-fat milk
1/3 cup light ricotta cheese
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 large egg whites
1 large egg
cooking spray
3 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Directions:

Preheat oven to 400°F.
Combine first 6 ingredients in a large bowl. Stir in apple, and make a well in center of mixture.
Combine buttermilk and next 6 ingredients (buttermilk through egg); stir well with a whisk. Add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist.
Spoon batter into 18 muffin cups coated with cooking spray.
Combine 3 tablespoons sugar and 2 teaspoons cinnamon; sprinkle evenly over batter.
Bake at 400°F for 18 minutes or until done. Remove from pans immediately; cool on a wire rack.

  • STAINED GLASS APPLES

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I cut out the shape of a red and green apple and then cut out the inside.  I then put it onto a piece of clear contact paper (purchased at LakeShore Learning) sticky side face up.  Aedan helped rip up red and green tissue paper (this was fun for him and we got a little crazy), then he was given free reign to stick the paper onto the contact paper.  When he decided he was finished I put another piece of contact paper over the top sandwiching the paper in the middle, trim the outside and, ta-da, Stained Glass Apples!

  • APPLES SONG:

Apples, Apples

(to the tune of twinkle, twinkle little star)

Apples juicy, apples round;

On the tree or on the ground.

Apples yellow, apples red;

Apple pie and juice and bread!

Apples crunchy, apples sweet;

Apples are so good to eat!

  • APPLE HIDE AND SEEK

1. Aedan loves to play hide-and-seek.  2. I love Target’s Dollar section!  Target has seasonal items in the dollar section and I would urge everyone to check it out.  All these projects and activities can add up, but I can usually find something every week that we can incorporate into our current theme and save $$$.  So I found foam apples that came in a pack of 6, red and green.  I had Aedan sit at the kitchen table and told him no peaking (or course he peaked, but oh well) and then I hid the apples around the living room.  Then I told him to go on an apple hunt and find them all.  He had a blast.  He searched, he hid and I searched.  We did this for a good hour!

  • BOOKS!

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