Monday, May 2, 2011

Wild West Lapbook ~ Chocolate Pudding

What's Cookin'?

Chocolate Pudding:  For my birthday youngest dd made me some chocolate pudding.  Mmmm.  My weakness.  This is super easy and beats the taste of Royal or Jello-O brand boxed pudding any day.  The hardest part is being patient while stirring it until it thickens :).

2 C whole milk
2 Tablespoons rapadura (or sweetener of your choice)
4 Tablespoons Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips (this is my secret ingredient!)
4-1/2 Tablespoons white flour
1 Tablespoon real butter
1/2 Teaspoon real vanilla (ever try homemade?)

Grease a saucepan (I use a small 1-qt pot and use palm shortening with NO trans fats but you could use butter or lard).  Mix the milk, rapadura, and flour in a bowl.  Pour into the greased pot and bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly until thickened.  Immediately remove from heat and stir in the butter and chocolate chips.  Stir until well blended.  Pour into serving bowls or one big serving bowl.  Refrigerate until cooled and ready to eat.  Note:  Leave a little extra in the pot for 'first licks' to share between you and the child who worked hard stirring the pot. :)

Notes:  The original recipe called for 4 Tablespoon cocoa, 4 Tablespoons sugar and NO chocolate chips.  If using powdered cocoa then mix with the milk/flour in the bowl first.  The original also called for 3 T flour and 1-1/2 T arrowroot or cornstarch.  I just use all flour and it thickens just fine.

This recipe is part of Kelly's Real Food Wednesday found here:

What's Schoolin'?

Here are photos of one older dd's Wild West Lapbook.  I talked about it here (scroll down to What's Schoolin'?) and used the book  The Wild West by Mike Stotter  as the spine for it.  If you have youngers I would recommend editing a couple of paragraphs (where it alludes to cowboys' drinking and brawling) but other than that I would've read the rest aloud to my younger (but we ended up not, after all, since I had some other books for her).  My olders were fine with it... after all they saw The Alamo with John Wayne in their history class (sigh) and even though the teacher fast-forwarded the drunken brawl scene the kids could still see it (another sigh).  By the way, even though that classic is Not Rated I found reviews recommending it for ages 15+.  It's a classic and fine for olders but mine weren't 15 yet and I'm a prude when it comes to what they watch.

Speaking of the Wild West (specifically the late 1800's in our history studies), the olders have really enjoyed a DVD we got at a garage sale (I think) of the original Lone Ranger series.  I love it!  Some are black and white and some are in color.  I'm fairly sure we have this one but if you're a die-hard Lone Ranger fan here is a collection.

Another video series the olders have really enjoyed that I found used is called Legends of the Old West (an old TV series also). I especially like it because it introduces them to historical figures, albeit outlaws, but anyway... It's fictionalized because the main heroes always catch the outlaw but it weaves in facts. 

I should note that my dc actually prefer the white only and plain manila folders.  If you printed on colored paper or used colored folders it would be more colorful.  Sometimes my olders will color in with colored pencils but not usually.  Younger dd still likes to color her mini-books whenever she lapbooks.  Enjoy the pictures of the lapbooks...

What's Gardenin'?

Our house goes on the market tomorrow so there is no more gardening for me this spring;  unless we can actually make it over to the community Children's Garden (which has yet to happen for us this season!).  I have, however, found a new favorite hanging basket plant:  Sun Parasol Pretty Pink Mandevilla.

The onions and garlic are doing great (ready to pick) and the sweet peas don't have powdery mildew for a change (although that may change after all of the rain we've had lately).

As soon as it stops raining I'll get some lady bugs to help keep the aphids under control.  I've found some lady bugs enjoying lunch but I'd like to have more lady bugs around.  It was interesting that the aphids swarmed the Kale and left the other plants around it alone.  I just pulled up the infested plant and got rid of it.  The potato plants are growing and loving this wet weather.  Hopefully since it's a raised bed they won't get too much water.


  1. I have been looking high and low a for a wild west lapbook...yours is exactly what I have been trying to find. Is it available for others to use?

  2. I was going to upload it to my future e-store (waaay future by the looks of it!) but I will be happy to send it to you as a freebie. I don't have access to my computer and internet at the same time right now(sounds weird, I know!) so it may be several weeks. Please remind me if you don't get it by early September.

    We really enjoyed this unit and I hope you do as well :)

  3. Thank you!!! Our 13yr old boy will be thrilled to have this to do this year...He loves the old west.

  4. Okay Junebug... I just e-mailed it to you. Let me know if you didn't get it.

  5. Not sure if you have placed your Wild West Lapbook on sale yet, but I am very interested in using it. My daughter loves the wild west and asked to study it. Perfect fit for our homeschooling. Can you share details on how I can get a hold of it? Great work!!

  6. I will e-mail it to you privately. I hope she enjoys it! I'll be using it again next year with my youngest - that's the plan anyway!

    Any donations through the donations button at the top of the blog are appreciated, but don't worry about it if you can't swing anything right now. I sure know how that goes (thus the donation button)!

    Let me know if you don't get it.

  7. I am not sure if my first post went through, so I thought I would try again. I would love this lapbook if it is still available. We are starting a wild west unit and my daughter loves lapbooking.

    1. Lisa, I just looked through all of my google drive files and didn't find it uploaded. Hopefully I will find it on my old computer... but it is stored so it may be a few weeks. So sorry! In the meantime, here are some links that you may find helpful:

      Thank you for your interest!