A Feast to Celebrate the New Year

For some reason, our tradition is having a pork roast on New Year’s Day. I’m not sure how it started, but it stuck. This year, I made our favorite pork roast, along with roast carrots and potatoes. For dessert, we had an amazing Christmas trifle, which included layers of homemade white chocolate-peppermint mousse, extra-fudgy homemade brownies, and homemade chocolate pudding, all sprinkled with a little bit of crushed peppermint candies (whipped cream optional). It was a nice way to start off the New Year!

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Olympics School–Day Thirteen

Like all good things, today the Olympics had to come to an end. We had to sneak in one last day of Olympics school before it was all over!

We started by making a fun snack/craft. Just as we started Olympics school with a torch craft, today we ended with one, to symbolize the passing of the torch to the next Olympic city, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. I thought an edible craft would be a fun change, so we dipped pretzel rods in melted white chocolate and sprinkled with yellow sugar. (I considered red and/or orange, as well–orange was my first choice, but I couldn’t find that at Wal-Mart, so yellow it was!). Chocolate covered pretzels are always delicious, and Olympic-themed ones even more so!

Turkey and Bunny had one last written assignment–a short report on what they’ve learned about England. They covered things such as cities, popular foods, common plants and animals, and native dress (basically, fancy hats!). It was fun to see which elements of British culture really stuck with them…and if we had had a landmark section in the report, they may never have finished it, they’ve enjoyed learning about all of the famous places in England so much!

We also did “medal” math one last time. In addition to adding up the medals on our chart, we compared the total medals of each country this year to their medal totals in the Beijing Olympics, and tracked their gains and losses. We also added up all of the medals in the Commonwealth Realms, and decided that the Queen, as head of the Commonwealth, wins the Olympics!

And, since “Bolting” was so much fun, we tried doing the “Mobot,” too!

Prior to the Closing Ceremonies, we had an English meal for dinner…sausage rolls for the main course…

and a traditional English trifle for dessert!

I’m sad to see our “London Summer” come to an end…between the Diamond Jubilee and the Olympics, we’ve had so much British fun! Maybe we’ll just have to have an English Christmas…

Today’s Passport Stamps: English Cuisine and Citius-Altius-Fortius

Tasty Tuesday–Double Chocolate Mocha Trifle

  • 1 large pan (19.5 ounce) package brownie mix (I used Pillsbury Mocha Fudge Brownie Mix)
  • 1 3/4 cups cold milk
  • 2 3.3 ounce packages instant white chocolate pudding mix
  • 4 teaspoons instant coffee granules
  • 2 tablespoons warm water
  • 1 cup heavy cream, whipped with 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 3  bars chocolate covered toffee bars, chopped
Prepare brownies according to package directions. Bake and cool completely. Cut into 1 inch cubes.
In a medium bowl, whisk together milk and pudding mix until mixture begins to thicken. Dissolve coffee granules in water and stir into pudding mixture. Fold in whipped cream.
In a glass serving bowl, layer one-third of brownie cubes, one-third of pudding mixture and one-third of candy. Repeat layering until all ingredients are used. Chill 30 minutes in refrigerator before serving.
If desired, garnish with additional whipped cream and toffee bits.