A week before our move, my son reminded me that he was the student of the week, and needed a classroom snack the next day. I offered to pick up fruit snacks on the way to school in the morning. This suggestion was met with a blank stare. I offered granola bars or suckers and his expression remained the same. I leaned in and quietly asked “were you expecting something homemade?” He nodded, responding “you just make the coolest things, Mom”. Be still my heart. And then, he added the clincher: but if it’s too much trouble, we can just buy something he says as he surveys the dinner dishes, and the half-packed boxes. This boy, who has taken the news of the move so well, and has shown such maturity in the extra tasks asked of him, if he wanted something homemade, he was going to get it, by golly. We went to the computer for inspiration.
The idea of cupcakes, brownies, or cookies seemed too daunting of a project for the moment. Most of the bowls and pans were packed, and the idea of more dishes at the end of the night was unappealing. We saw these Tiny Teddy Cars online. Buying the ingredients and having the kids assemble it seemed manageable. FYI: Baking a pan of brownies would have cost 75% less and taken a fraction of the time.
And, since we were serving these to others, this was no longer a job for the kids – it was messy and tedious.
Blessed is the friend, who arrives to pack, but seeing a kitchen table filled with sorted M&Ms, broken Teddy Grahams and chocolate, does not cast judgement, just washes her hands to help.
Before the kids were sent to bed, they cut the Teddy Grahams drivers in half, and attempted to halve the M&Ms, but those were too tricky. I thought the kids would be more disappointed not to help with the project, but they were content to just eat the unneeded brown M&Ms.
We used little Milky Ways fun size bars. The store didn’t have many choices this time of year – most brands just had the mini size.
The project took hours longer than expected. I could have baked and frosted four dozen cupcakes, cleaned the kitchen, and packed at least two boxes in the time it took to make these, but they were adorable once finished. And my son was thrilled, which was the whole point.
The cars turned out much sturdier than I expected, once fully dry. I packed them in a 9×13 lidded pan with crumpled foil on the bottom, and covered them with crumpled wax paper so that they wouldn’t bump into each other. They survived the third grader taking them into school on his own.
The verdict? It was an adorable, time-consuming project. As cute as they are, I don’t recommend making these for a classroom, unless an unsuspecting friend stops by. However, they would make great favors at a birthday party or be super cute on a cake.
And my daughter, who was the “Top Dog Student” the week of the move, graciously chose to take fruit snacks as her treat. Bless her heart.