Apple Extravaganza – Day 5!

Today is the final installment of Apple Extravaganza!

Don’t tell my hubby, but I have a MAJOR crush on Johnny Appleseed! :-)  Just kidding, but seriously.  Johnny was a pretty amazing guy.  He was gentle, kind, totally domestic (I mean, he wore a tin pot on his head!), and loved telling others about Jesus. Even the animals liked Johnny!  Sounds like a Dreamboat to me!

Check out this summary about Johnny from www.applejuice.org

Johnny Appleseed spent 49 years of his life in the American wilderness planting apple seeds. Johnny Appleseed’s real name was John Chapman. He was born September 26, 1774 in Massachusetts. He created apple orchards in Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Pennsylvania and Ohio. After 200 years, some of those trees still bear apples.

Apple TreeJohnny Appleseed’s dream was for a land where blossoming apple trees were everywhere and no one was hungry. A gentle and kind man, he slept outdoors and walked barefoot around the country planting apple seeds everywhere he went. It is even told that he made his drinking water from snow by melting it with his feet.

Johnny was a friend to everyone he met. Indians and settlers — even the animals — liked Johnny Appleseed. His clothes were made from sacks and his hat was a tin pot. He also used his hat for cooking. His favorite book was the Bible.

cooking potThere are many tales about Johnny Appleseed. It is said that once Johnny fell asleep and a rattlesnake tried to bite him, but the fangs would not go into his foot because his skin was as tough as an elephant’s hide. Another tale describes him playing with a bear family.

Johnny Appleseed died in 1845. It was the only time he had been sick — in over 70 years!!!

On second thought, I like my men to have clean feet.  I don’t think I could handle Johnny’s dirty, snake fang-resistant feet in our bed.  :-)  Every night I wash my feet before bed and every night I ask Ryan if he has washed his and every night he says, “Yup!” even though I know he did not wash his feet.  Haha!  It’s a fun game we play, but at least I know Ryan hasn’t been walking down dirt roads and climbing up trees with his feet.

But I digress!

Day 5 Apple Activity –

Plan with your kids to celebrate Johnny’s Birthday on September 26th!  Decide on a menu for the event as well as make some cards for Johnny or decorations.  Invite some friends to honor Johnny too!

Two years ago Ryan and I invited 3 other couples to our house for an Apple Party.  I served the menu you’ll find below.  I gave out Apple Cider scented candles and Apple-shaped cutting boards that I found in the produce section of Publix as party favors.  Of course every good party needs some humor, so I told Apple Jokes too.  It’s one of my favorite memories!

You can even make Johnny Appleseed hats for all of your party guests by following these instructions…

Johnny Appleseed Pot Hats: Cut 4 inch wide strips from gray or black construction paper (12×18 inch or large construction paper is best). Fit the strips around each of your child’s head to make a band and staple. Add a smaller strip of paper to the band as the “handle” of the pot. Remember to put the handle at the bottom of the hat so it looks like the “pot” is upside down on the head. As an extra option, have your children color a small apple and write their name as “_____ Appleseed” in the middle. Staple the apple to the hat.

A fun game to play at your event would be Apple Tic Tac Toe.  Click here for this adorable printable!

Johnny’s B-Day Party Menu –

Pork Roast with Garlic and Apples – Put a halved, 4 lb pork loin roast into a large slow cooker.  Whisk together a 12 oz jar of apple jelly, a 1/2 cup water, and 2 1/2 tsp minced garlic.  Pour over the roast.  Sprinkle the roast with 1 T dried parsley, 1 tsp seasoned salt, and 1 tsp pepper.  Cover and cook on LOW setting for 8-9 hours, or until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of roast reads 160 degrees.  Let roast stand for 5 minutes before slicing.  Serve with cooking juices.

Sausage-Apple-Pecan Stuffing –

Ingredients: 2 cups onion, chopped; 1 cup celery with leaves, chopped; 1 cup butter, divided; 2 cups chicken broth; 14 oz pkg + 6 oz pkg herb-flavored stuffing mix; 16 oz pkg ground sausage, browned and drained; 3 red apples, cored and chopped; 1 cup golden raisins; 1/2 cup chopped pecans; 1 tsp cinnamon; salt and pepper; 2 envelopes chicken instant seasoning and broth.

Directions: Saute onions and celery in 1/2 cup butter until onions are golden.  Heat broth in saucepan over medium heat.  Add remaining butter and cook until melted, set aside.  In a HUGE bowl, combine stuffing mix, onion mixture, sausage, apples, raisins, nuts, and instant seasoning and cinnamon.  Blend with hands and add broth mixture one cup at a time until desired consistency.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Spoon into buttered 9×13 dish.  Cover and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.  Uncover and bake about 20-25 minutes more.

Happy Home Fairy Secret Applesauce Jell-O Recipe – Take a large package of strawberry Jell-O mix.  Prepare as directed, substituting a 24 oz jar of applesauce for the cold water.  Refrigerate until set.

Johnny’s Caramel Apple Birthday Cake!

Don’t forget to put candles in it and sing to him!

I sincerely pray that you and your family had fun this week with me as we celebrated apples.  God has truly given us such a fun and unique fruit to enjoy.  And I hope that your kids liked learning about Johnny today – he certainly is an example to us of someone who used his passion about something to bring God’s Word to many!

God Bless your Apple-ing!  And may you always remember that YOU are the Apple of God’s eye!

Final Apple Joke –

Children were lined up in the cafeteria of a Christian school for lunch. At the head of the table was a large pile of apples. Someone had written a note and placed it next to the apples. It read, “Take only one, God is watching.”

Moving through the line, to the other end of the table, was a large pile of chocolate chip cookies.

One little boy wrote his own note and stuck it next to the cookies, “Take all you want, God is watching the apples.”