Michael and I took a trip with our parents to Cincinnati this summer. One of our favorite places to visit was the Cincinnati Zoo. It opened in 1875 and is the second-oldest zoo in the United States! My favorite animals were the White Tigers, and Michael loved the Colobus monkeys. I got my face painted, and we all enjoyed a 4D movie. No matter how near or far you go, there are always exciting things to explore!
This is our new friend, Nigel. We met him on a recent trip to London, England. Nigel showed us so many fun things in London. Michael’s favorite thing we did was to play rugby. Rugby is a sport sort of like American football, but the ball is a little different and the players don’t wear pads. It can be a rough game. Look out, Michael!
Michael and I see many things around the world. There are so many kinds of music, food, and especially animals. We wondered if there was anything we could find no matter where we went. Michael asked our Mom and Dad and they had an answer.
Ants! There are over 12,000 different kinds! We searched the internet for more information and found AntARK, a place that tells all about ants. You can find out what ants may live near you.
We share music, art, and even games and sports with people around the world, but I never thought about ants. I wonder if they bug everyone’s parents as much as they bother our Dad!
Hi, everyone! Our whole family, not just me and Michael, made a trip to Puerto Rico. There was so much to show our Mom and Dad. We took them nearly everywhere Alana showed us. We also found some new places like the one in this photo.
The story of this statue goes back to a time when San Juan, the capital of Puerto Rico, was surrounded by enemy forces. The Bishop led a rogativa that was mostly women and children, but the enemy thought it was more troops arriving and decided to leave! The city was saved by the march!
One of our favorite parts of traveling is making new friends. Over the next month, Michael and I are going to feature some of our friends from around the world.
This is our friend Francesca who we met in Barcelona. Francesca is an artist, and she loves to paint, draw, and sculpt. Lucky she lives in such a wonderfully artistic city! She even made the shirt she has on here. Everywhere she goes in Barcelona, Francesca can see art – from street vendors, built into the sidewalks, and even in the beautifully designed buildings.
Michael and I cooked plantains this week in preparation for an upcoming trip to Puerto Rico. They were easy to cook, and SO GOOD! Here’s an easy and yummy recipe you can try with your family:
Have you ever seen a mosaic? A mosaic is a piece of art made by arranging colored tiles. A great place to see mosaic artwork is in Barcelona, Spain. A famous architect named Antoni Gaudi made tons of buildings and sculptures using mosaics. Our favorite is the giant lizard in Park Guell – his name is El Drac (The Dragon in English), and he’s enormous.
Michael and I like to make our own mosaic patterns and pictures out of construction paper. Try your own and see what beautiful things you can make!
Michael and I did a fun dance in Peru called the huayno (pronounced why-no). It originated in the Andes mountains and is practiced mostly by the native people, the Quechua people. They have cool instruments there too, including one called a charango. It’s like a small guitar made out of an armadillo shell! Check out this fun video of people dancing the huayno.
April and May is Mango season in Thailand! One of the best things we’ve tried is mangoes with sticky rice. Our friend Yung told us about it, but we didn’t actually eat it while we were there. It was maybe the only thing we didn’t eat!
Mangoes with sticky rice is just what it says. The “sticky” part of the rice comes from coconut milk and some sugar. A friend of Yung’s Dad always says it “melts in your mouth,” especially with the fresh mangoes in Thailand.
Get your parents to try one of these recipes!
[Author note: When our contributor described this dish, he repeated a few times how good it was. The “melts in your mouth” quote is direct from him, but we can’t reproduce how he said it: lips smacking, eyes closed, arms raised, and the look of relish on his face would convince anyone this is a dish to try.]
Have you ever had quinoa (pronounced keen-wa)? It is one of my favorite grains. Quinoa comes from the Andes mountains, and Michael and I tried it when we were in Peru. Here is a yummy recipe that you can make with your family. Try adding your own favorite flavors as well!
- 2 cups quinoa
- ½ cup red wine vinegar
- ½ cup canola, olive, or vegetable oil
- 1 clove minced garlic
- ½ of a white or yellow onion, chopped
- 1 red pepper, chopped
- 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup corn (frozen, canned, or fresh)
- Salt and pepper
Cook quinoa according to package directions. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk the vinegar, oil, and garlic. Once mixed, add in cooked quinoa and stir. Add in black beans, corn, peppers, and onions, and stir. Add salt and pepper to taste. Store in the refrigerator.