Monday, January 20, 2014

Arizona Dreamin'

Welcome to the Grand Canyon State!  The kiddos were off of school today and we took advantage of the extra time to kick-off Arizona in style.  After a quick grocery run this morning so we could get everything we needed for our Arizona meal tonight (more on this later) we came back to put our Arizona wall together and learn all about the flag, bird, tree, flower and other stats that make Arizona unique.  My little sponges ate this up like usual - I so enjoy just watching them learn and see how excited they are about this.

Since we had the day free we also decided to make one of our Arizona projects for the week.  If you're unaware, Arizona has the largest amount of land set aside within the state for the Native American population in the country, the largest being "Navajo Nation", which even has its own capital!  That being the case, I wanted a project that would celebrate the Native American population in Arizona.  The first thing that popped into my head was a dream catcher.  Research turned up the fact that dream catcher is actually attributed to the Ojibwa tribe, who is not in Arizona.  Further research (because I was determined this would be a great project, lol) turned up that the Navajos actually have their own legend regarding the dream catcher.  The kiddos were stoked when I shared this with them and were anxious to make their own and keep the bad dreams away.  You'll have to see how they turned out below.

I decided to go for a three-fer today and make an Arizona meal as well.  When I was digging through recipes (this was before I got my cool cookbook, which a whole bunch of my recipes for this week came from as well) I found that the chimichanga actually originated in Arizona!  So chicken chimichangas for dinner tonight it was!  (Kristi's side note:  If you're trying this out, while I do have my cool new mini deep fryer that I plan on trying out tomorrow night to make sopapillas, I decided to bake these instead.  They turn out just as yummy - promise.  I gave a light coat of butter to each of the top of these and then baked them at 425 for 15 minutes instead)  I've made chimichangas before but this was the first time with the sour cream sauce which Grant said made the dish.

Phew, what a ridiculously busy Arizona day!  If that's not enough we managed some skype time with the Kunkle's which was great.

The Bean has a field trip tomorrow and she and I are going to see The Little Mermaid at the Marquis Theater in Northville.  She is so excited!  I have to admit, so am I.  Plus we've have mail from Arizona piling up that we're going to get to open finally.  Can't wait!  So until then...

Arizona Fun Fact of the Day:  The Grand Canyon is 1 mile deep, 10 miles wide and 277 miles long if stretched out.  That means if you started driving at 70mph, it would take you almost 4 hours to drive from one end to the other!

 Day off from school means puzzle building


 Meet this week's mascot - Saguaro!  (I got him in Phoenix about 10 years ago when I was there)

 The Arizona wall is up!

 Making dream catchers

Chicken Chimichangas with Southwestern rice and beans

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