Passport to Fun - Mexico

Travel the world from the comfort of your living room with this Passport to Fun series!  Whether you use these ideas as a date night, family fun night, or homeschool study, you'll be sure to have some fun and bring a bit of Mexico's culture right into your own home!




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You'll remember that I came up with a pretty awesome idea for G's Christmas gift last year.

If you're new here and don't know what I'm talking about, then feel free to wander on over to this post to read all about it.

I'll wait.

Even though we spent all of 2016 traveling to new countries each month, we had so much fun I decided to extend this series indefinitely - so many cool places to learn about and we've even got a list of places we want to return to in the future!


This month, we headed to Mexico to celebrate Cinco de Mayo!


May - Mexico



Set the Stage

I added this stamp to G's passport, then left it out where he'd find it the next morning before he went to work so he'd see where we were going:




What to Decorate With


The flag thing is our go-to wall art for each trip.  It's something fairly simple for Gv and I to do together, uses supplies we already have, and still lends an air of the locale.


How do you like the joint-effort bird Gv and I cut out for the center?




What to Dress Like


I had a dress that I'd gotten on a trip over the border when I was little that Gv could wear, but then I spent forever and a day lamenting the fact that I did not keep the giant sombrero a friend surprised me with when she took me to dinner at a local Mexican place for my birthday back in high school.

I was starting to think that we'd be without a family photo this month or that G and I would have to make do with bright yellow rain ponchos, but I think we somehow managed to pull things off, once again:


You know the mustaches were completely G's idea!




What to Listen to

I created a playlist for this month based off of whatever related songs I already had on my ipod:

The La Bamba soundtrack

Selena's greatest hits

Mariachi music

Menudo

And the classic songs Perfidia, La Cucaracha, and  The Mexican Hat Dance, along with Cuando Calienta el Sol & Que te Pasa, which were huge hits in my high school Spanish class (I still remember all the words -- and videos -- for these).








What to Eat

I make Mexican-inspired dishes at least once a month, so this month's trip didn't involve any really unusual foods, but I did try a couple of recipes for the first time.

We noshed on chips and salsa for an appetizer, then had burritos and enchiladas for our main dish.

I used my favorite Totally Terrific & Healthy Tortillas for the burritos and whipped up a batch of these Crazy Quick Tortillas to use with our Easy Enchiladas.

My favorite Mexican dessert has always been sopapillas, so I fried up far too many of these tasty little triangles to go along with our local blueberry honey (there was no way I was getting anywhere near churros again!)

A Corona or some margaritas would have made sense for this trip, but we kept things to just a nip of tequila (without the worm!)

Sopapillas


What You Need

1/2 Tablespoon yeast

1/8 cup water

3/4 cup milk of choice

1 1/2 Tablespoon melted shortening (I used this)

3/4 teaspoon salt

1 Tablespoon sugar (I used honey)

2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour

cinnamon

honey

What You Do


1.  Mix the yeast through the flour, knead, cover, and let rise for an hour.

2.  Roll the dough out to 1/8-inch thickness, cut into triangles and fry in oil until brown. Drain.


I fried these in coconut oil in my electric skillet.

3. Sprinkle with cinnamon and drizzle with honey before serving.

What to Do


I'd had great plans for all sorts of crafts for this trip: piñatas out of either a paper bag or using a balloon, building a sombrero using a paper plate and cup and some pom poms, weaving an ojo de dios using yarn and some craft sticks, creating giant tissue paper flowers to decorate with...but then I remembered how busy the month of May is and decided to save all of those great ideas for the next time we visit this country!

We settled for making these plastic egg-and-spoon maracas:


These Easter Egg Maracas are super-simple: fill a plastic egg with a bit of rice, then tape two plastic spoons on either side and shake away!


And then, because Gv loves making snowflakes so much, we cut out several colorful picados out of tissue paper and taped them up on the wall:

Fold a square of tissue paper in half to make a triangle, then repeat two more times. Cut along the final folded edge only to retain the square outline.




What to Read


Gv and I read one of her favorite books, Skippyjon Jones, but here are a few others that you could choose from:






P is for Pinata

Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo: The Artist Who Painted Herself


Two novels that would fit this trip for the grownups are: Like Water for Chocolate (such a fun, different kind of book!)  and the weighty Mexico by James Michener.


What to Watch

For our family viewing, we watched several episodes of Speedy Gonzalez along with Disney's The Three Caballeros.


I've also put The Book of Life on our list, for when Gv is a bit older:



G had never seen Selena, so that's what we watched, but I came up with a bunch of other movies that are now on our to-watch list, as well:

Nacho Libre (actually, I have no desire to watch this one again, but you might want to)

La Bamba

Tortilla Soup

Like Water for Chocolate

Once Upon a Time in Mexico



And that wrapped up our "trip." It was another huge success and we can't wait to jet off to someplace new next month!



Travel all over the world, without leaving your living room!  Come back each month to see where we head next.  Can you think of any other ideas to add for a trip to Mexico?  I'd love to hear!  Either leave a comment below or email me at lisahealy (at) outlook (dot) com.


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Want more?  Check out some of our other trips:

Italy - India - France - Africa - Ireland - Switzerland - Canada - Greece - England - Germany - Thailand Russia - China - Spain - Jamaica - Egypt - Japan - Brazil Cuba
Love this idea, but want the easy, made-for-you-and-all-you-do-is-print-it version?  Click here to get your own pack and see what inspired me to create this series!