Passport to Fun - Thailand

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 fun and bring a bit of the Thai 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 this past 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.

For our next "trip," we visited a country that we were really excited about, primarily because we love its food: Thailand.

Plus, it was nice to kind of honor Thailand this month, since the entire country is in mourning after losing its king.

November - Thailand

Set the Stage

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

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.

We also used a few of our craft projects to fancy up the place:

I scoured the internet for both authentic and cute coloring pages

What to Dress Like

I know our outfits are pretty much just like the ones we wore for India, but I did add some fancy dancing fingernails (I twisted up construction paper to fit over my fingers and held it all together with tape) and give Gv a fancy dancing hat:

...nevermind that her hat got all squooshed from all the dancing she was doing!

G has actually really gotten into coming up with his own costumes. This one looked just like the traditional costume photos we'd Googled!  He should've been in fashion, apparently!

What to Listen to

When I think of Thailand, I immediately get this song stuck in my head:

Followed by this one:

I also played this album.

And then we finished the night up with plenty of what I call traditional Thai "plink plink" music:

What to Eat

This trip's meal was a bit of a roller coaster ride:

I was initially tempted to just splurge and go out to eat at our favorite neighborhood Thai place this month, especially when I discovered that we were out of so many of the specialty ingredients I rely on to make our typical Thai meals here at home.

But then I found this in the back of a cabinet:

(who knows how old it is, but hey, we're still walking) and just decided to do what I could, with what we had.

Of course, things couldn't be that simple, because when I pulled the chicken out of the fridge to get started, it was still frozen solid (even though I'd taken it out of the freezer over a day before!) and so I had a mini-meltdown - throwing everything back into the fridge and myself facedown onto the bed.

G discovered me there, wailing about how nothing ever goes right and why do I even try to do fun things...

Ye-ah, I was a tad emotional about it all.

So G did what any good husband would: he told me to throw on some clothes and get Gv dressed, because he was taking his girls out to dinner!

We started our meal with Tom Kha Gai soup, which just might be my absolute favorite soup, ever.

G got veggie (top) and I had chicken (bottom). Poor Gv didn't get any, because we were too greedy to share!

Gv had Thai Dumplings for her meal:

Gv ate these while we ate our soup. She's lucky we were so consumed with slurping our soup, because these potstickers looked delicious!

G had a hot pepper basil dish:

And I had my favorite Thai entree, Panang Curry:

It was delicious, I recovered from my little meltdown, and we were home in time for all our other activities, so G saved the day!

A few days later (after everything finally thawed out), I went ahead and made that soup:

Hmmm....this didn't look quite right...

I'm guessing the mix was too old, because although we slurped it all up and it was completely edible, it tasted nothing like that soup should.

I made a different dish with the rest of the chicken, then nixed all my other food plans for this trip - except for dessert.

For dessert, I'd thought about making a coconut cake or something with lychees or mangoes, but then decided to try something new that sounded easy: Thai-Style Creme Caramel (which was so incredibly delicious, we might just have it once a week from now on!)

So, our food for this trip ended up being a bit unconventional (for us, at least, since we never go out), but it all worked out in the end.

Thai-Style Creme Caramel

What You Need

1 cup of coconut milk (I used this)

2 eggs

1/2 Tablespoon honey

1/8 cup maple syrup

1 teaspoon vanilla

pinch of salt

What You Do

1.  Beat eggs for 1 minute and then add everything but the maple syrup.

2.  Coat your ramekin with a little oil, then pour in the maple syrup.

3.  Pour the egg mixture on top of the syrup.

4.  Place the ramekin in a deep glass baking dish and fill that baking dish with water until it reaches a quarter of the way up the ramekin.

5.  Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees (or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean).

Fresh from the oven!

6.  Allow this to cool, then invert it onto a serving plate, making sure to scrape out all the syrup so that it oozes down the sides.

7.  Enjoy this dish warm, or stick it in the fridge and have it cold - it's great both ways!

What to Do

I printed out a bunch of random Thai coloring book designs, which was fun because Gv recognized the style from the decorations in the restaurant we ate at.

I'm not quite sure why Gv felt the need to glue these onto bright green paper, but hey, it worked.

She really enjoyed playing with this paper doll:

After Gv finished putting the clothes on and off a few times, she decided to glue the outfit onto the doll permanently.

Then we played this game.

This game reminded me of the peg-jumping game that's on the tables at Cracker Barrel.

And we finished up our activities with some paper-folding.  I'd seen this tutorial on how to make paper napkin lotus flowers and it looked so easy and fun...

I obviously have absolutely no future as an origami artist!

We had more success when we tried it out with a really large piece of paper, but I learned that a career in origami was not likely in any of our futures!

This one looked better, but still nothing like the fancy example from the video!

Also, it has been a while since we've visited the Wat Mongkolratanaram in a nearby town, so we're planning to head there Sunday after church (Yay! More yummy food!), if we're in the mood for a long-distance outing.

What to Read

For the adults, I suggest the book that inspired The King and I as well as a coloring book:

Anna and the King of Siam

Thai Decorative Designs

What to Watch

I found several movies that were either about Thailand or set in Thailand (like this cheesy favorite of mine): Lost in Thailand, The Beach, Rambo: The Fight Continues, Once Upon a Time in Phuket, and Shakespeare Must Die (Thai version of Macbeth, but it was banned in Thailand!).

However, I had to go with watching this movie and then this one so we could compare the old with the new.  

Gv loved the musical - G did not.     

And that wrapped up our eleventh "trip" together for the year.  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 Thailand?  I'd love to hear!  Either leave a comment below or email me at lisahealy (at) outlook (dot) com.

Also, if you don't want to miss a single minute of great tips like this and all the fun around here, be sure to sign up for free updates and then look forward to having each post delivered right to your inbox.

Want more?  Check out some of our other trips:

Italy - India - France - Africa - Ireland - Switzerland - Canada - Greece - England - Germany - Russia China - Jamaica Egypt - Mexico - Japan - Brazil Cuba Scotland - Australia - Scandinavia

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!

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