Sunday, January 27, 2008

Monkey Platters

In addition to a gobload of unschooling information, Sandra Dodd's website has information about Monkey Platters.

After seeing a zoo trainer give the monkeys a platter of snacks, they started calling it a monkey platter at home. A monkey platter is a plate full of finger foods, easy to munch on while playing video games, watching movies, or doing anything else where one becomes so engrossed he may forget to eat.

I loved the idea the minute I heard it. It is especially common for Brady to get lost in his computer work and forget to eat, then come careening into the kitchen hours later, about to have a meltdown if he doesn't get food into himself at that very moment.

Whenever the boys are deeply engrossed in an activity and I notice they haven't eaten, I grab whatever we have on hand and make up a platter, set it in front of them, and it disappears. This is a fine way to test out foods they normally wouldn't select - who wouldn't eat what's already prepared in front of them? It sure beats scrounging for ingredients and making something when you'd rather be gaming.

Chopped veggies and fruit, nuts, seeds, raisins, cubes of cheese. Bowls of hummus, salad dressing, peanut butter, or caramel for dipping. Crackers, sesame sticks, dried cereal, or chunked up granola bars.

Wait, did someone mention granola bars?

Hmmm, now that's a thought.... I think I'll make a monkey platter and set it in front of the boys and their friends.

It's always verrrrry interesting to see what gets eaten and what doesn't.

Redemption is mine!

(P.S. Apparently my new favorite word is gobload.)


My name is Stacie. said...

That is a STUPENDOUS idea! My son (age 8) hates taking the time to eat. He loves Lunchables, but I don't like the quality of food in them, or the price, or all the packaging, so now I will make him a monkey platter! Thanks so much for sharing that!

Mrs. G. said...

Monkey platter? I am stealing this.

Stephanie S. said...

We do this, too.
Only I don't call them monkey platters - as I have a strange aversion to monkeys.....

Mine love veggies, and we're grazers, so ours usually consists of crackers (sometimes with peanut butter, peas, tomatoes, apple, orange, cucumbers and avocados.
They're always gone at the end of the day.
I've been meaning to post about it too!
I'm glad you did.

K. said...

This was great - I especially loved the surprise twist of the cardamom bar redemption - I totally didn't see that one coming, and I'm usually pretty good at these things. :P

piscesgrrl said...

m.n.i.s. - that was totally my reaction when I first heard about it. I still sometimes forget to do it, and when I remember, I think again, "brilliant!"

mrs g - steal away, sharin' the love

stephanie s - i will try never to mention monkeys again in your presence

k. - that's was goal, to try to sneak one over on you. actually, it wasn't - but it will be now.

Colleen said...

Gobload is an excellent word. I like freaker-outer, too. I just learned that one from Diana at Bodhicitta. :)

Sandra Dodd said...

I have lifted your top two photos for a monkey platter photo contest. If you want to take other photos of more recent ones, that would be fun too! I think some moms need photos instead of words for inspiration and yours are beautiful!

piscesgrrl said...

Sandra, where's the monkey platter photo contest... on your blog?

Sandra Dodd said...

Congratulations on 2nd place in the image contest! Please e-mail me so I can give you some prize choices and mail you a package!

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