Category Archives: Wales

Welsh Rabbit Dinner

 In our week in Wales, along with drawing dragons and reading about the Welsh culture, we also learned how the daffodil got its name (from Saint Daffyd) and how the Welsh celebrate this Saint “David” with a huge festival in Cardiff that includes dancing and singing and attaching small leeks to shirts, fastening them with pins.  Apparently leeks have been a part of the Welsh diet for thousands of years, and of course with leeks also being an essential part of our family’s diet,  I couldn’t pass up the chance to purchase a few at our local farmer’s market.

We love Farmer’s Market.

The kids especially love the free samples

After picking out our leeks and other things, we headed home to some more Wales fun. 

First, we drew some castles or “fortresses”.

Tallinn's finished castle

Addie’s finished fortress

After drawing our castles, we put our leeks and other purchases together for a traditional Welsh dinner.

Welsh Dinner Menu

Potato-Leek Soup

 

Fresh, colorful potatoes

 Unable to find a Welsh potato-leek soup recipe,  I opted for my own go-to version. 

 Potato-leek soup recipe

 2-3 chopped leeks

 4 cups chicken broth

 2 pounds potatoes, chopped into 1 inch pieces

 1/4 cup butter

 salt and pepper

 whipping cream, optional

Melt butter in large saucepan over medium heat.   Add leeks and simmer until soft, about 10 minutes.  Add potatoes and  completely cover with chicken broth. (You might need a bit more to completely cover potatoes.)  Cover and simmer until potatoes are soft, about 30 minutes. Puree with hand blender, season with salt and pepper and add a bit of whipping cream if desired.

For dessert we opted for brownies, not at all Welsh, but nobody seemed to complain.

Thank you, Wales.  We promise, as we often do, but definitely will have to this time as it is the home of Cardiff’s namesake, to visit and see your wonderful sights and sheep in person.

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Maple Scones and Fig Jam, Served Alongside Tea

 For Christmas I received a cookbook from Canada with lots of Maple-involved recipes, and, as I recently visited a new local spice shop (thanks to Groupon), I happened to have some maple sugar I’ve been wanting to incorporate into a delicious treat (besides my morning coffee). 

So, what better time than during our week in Wales to enjoy some tea, some maple-flavored scones and some of my also newly-purchased fig jam?  Perhaps a slight twist on the traditional Welsh cream scone with clotted cream and jam, but quite delicious nonetheless.

 Car was the first to arrive at the table.

He was pretty excited about it.

 Cheers!

Welcome to Wales

Okay, so if you’ve been following our blog, you may have noticed that we already “slightly” covered Wales, or that my mom technically taught the kids about the UK during my actual trip to Uganda.

Well, initially when I planned our A-Z country list, Western Sahara was the only country listed for “W”.  As it turns out, the fact that Western Sahara is a country is a bit questionable and it can almost be considered part of Morocco.  Since we already had a fabulous week in Morocco and I had to miss the UK fun, AND, since Cardiff’s name did come from Wales, I thought we would just venture back and go a little deeper into this dragon-flagged nation.

Venturing west and north from Vietnam, we arrived in mountainous, sheep speckled, valley-filled Wales, with coasts bordering the west and England bordering the east.  I am super excited to be here!  In my real-life, non virtual travels, I have been many times to England, even visiting Scotland and Ireland as well, but never Wales. 

After our brief geography lesson, we went right into art, dragon art in fact, which might have been more fun for me than it was for the kids.  Doing a search for “dragon”,  I found a directed art lesson on one of my all-time favorite art teacher blogs

First we drew the dragons in pencil, beginning with the eye, mouth and nose.

Next, we drew the ears, body, leg, tail, arms and wing, adding spikes along the way.

My example.

Once the dragon was drawn, we traced over the pencil with permanent marker.

We had lots of help today which was super fun! Mémé helped Addie.

Our friend China, from Japan, helped Car.

Next, we colored in the dragons with oil pastels.

Cardiff's finished dragon

Addie's fire-breathing friend

Tallinn's Blue-Hot Monster

The flag of Wales is of a bright red dragon with a background of two horizontal lines, the top being white and the bottom green.   This art project was technically meant to look like the Welsh flag, but I let the kids choose their colors and have fun with it.  Also, in the Welsh flag, the dragon faces the other way….oops!

My finished “Welsh flag”

With dragons and castles and music and more….there are lots of fun possibilities this week in Wales!

In honor of Cardiff, we are learning his life verse this week:

The LORD is my rock, my fortress

and my deliverer;

my God is my rock, in whom I take

refuge,

my shield and the horn of my salvation.

2 Samuel 22:2