Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Narnia Fun

I was pretty stoked to discover that OSMI (the "local" science center) was going to be hosting a Narnia exhibit over the course of this summer. If you are local, you can check out the OMSI website for exhibit information.

It coincided perfectly with the Chronicles of Narnia Reading Challenge so OF COURSE we had to go! (Of course we had to go, regardless!)

We traveled to Portland on a weekend and made a little OMSI trip out of it. The exhibit is heavily based on the movies, rather than the books, but was it worth it? Well, I thought it was fun. But then, I really, really love Narnia. ;)

All of the displays are interactive so kids can play around with stuff a bit. We were a bit perturbed to tie-in conservation efforts with the White Witch's magic wherein she made it "always winter in Narnia and never Christmas." Totally ridiculous mumbo jumbo having absolutely nothing to do with the whole point and purpose of Narnia, trying to encourage green living. (That was over the top and a stretch beyond Lewis's imagination!) Otherwise though, we enjoyed flittering about.

The statue of Queen Susan and various other legendary treasures...

The exhibit ends by including some of Lewis's personal effects. The wardrobe you see below was owned by Lewis. There are also first edition Tolkien works in the display case.

In preparation for our visit, we re-read several of our Narnia picture books, some of which I've talked about previously. (You can click on that last link to see some of our latest additions to our home library.)

This was a fun way to enter the world of Narnia with my kids and for that reason alone I recommend a trip to visit the exhibit if it is possible for you to do so. It provides visuals for you to better picture things with in your head. (For example, I discovered that my favorite character, Reepicheep, is 22" high. That's the length of Bookworm3 when she was born which helps me to get a better picture of his height!)

Fun times as a family. We enjoyed it.

I couldn't resist them. I couldn't resist them at all! This summer I adorned my bookshelves with these Chronicles of Narnia bookends:

The side with the White Witch is particularly cool. (No pun intended.) We were very impressed upon their arrival and they make great conversation starters as well. If you are, uh, desperate for conversation or something. ;) At any rate, they are AWESOME and I love them. Very heavy, sturdy things with characters from one of my favorite series! Happy early birthday to me!


Given the price on the The Narnia Cookbook: Foods from C.S. Lewis's Chronicles of Narnia it seems unlikely that I will be in possession of a copy of it anytime soon. (Come on Goodwill or a used book store find!!!)

However, I do happen to have a copy of Turkish Delight which is credited as coming out of this cookbook. Not sure how I came into such a possession, but here 'tis, all the same:

Recipe for Turkish Delight

3 envelopes unflavored gelatin
1/2 cup cold water
1/2 cup hot water
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
about 1/2 cup confectioner's sugar, sifted

1. Soften the gelatin in the cold water. Set aside.

2. In a saucepan, bring the hot water and granulated sugar to a boil, stirring all the while. Lower heat. Add the salt, and stir in the softened gelatin until completely dissolved. Cook at a simmer for 20 minutes.

3. Remove from heat and let cool for 10 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice and lemon extract.

4. Rinse a 6" square pan with cold water. The pan should be wet but not have standing water. Pour the mixture into the pan. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to stand in a cool place overnight.

5. Sift some of the confectioner's sugar on a plate. Moisten a knife in very hot water and run it around the edges of the pan to loosen the candy. Invert the pan over the plate. It may be necessary to work on the edges a little to loosen them enough to turn the candy out on top of the sugar. Cut the square into equal-width strips. Roll each strip in sugar; then cut into cubes. Roll each cube in additional sugar to coat well.


Bookworm1 and I tried making this last year but I don't think we did it right. It didn't come out the way it was described and it tasted terrible. If someone else tries this recipe, let me know. (I'm quite positive I did something wrong with the recipe and am happy to try it again, but not this year!)

Enjoy -- if you can!


Barbara H. said...

That exhibit would be so much fun!
Love those bookends, too.

Your newest Bookworm is going to be a tall one!

B said...

Looks awesome! I'm almost jealous :) (Although we did see several of the costumes from the movie when we went on vacation a couple of months ago. Not quite the same, though.)

Unknown said...

I've wondered about the display. Still rather skeptical of OMSI's portrayal of great literature like this. BUT...since we have a membership I will go.

Carrie said...

@The Seven of Us - If you have a membership - then it's definitely more worth it. (It helped us to go and know what there were other things to see and do there as well.) The Display is all in one big room there but I DID think it helped to visualize things (the frozen waterfall was the kid's favorite thing) and we enjoyed looking at the Map of Narnia. I don't know if I could say, "Go for this exhibit alone" but if you can play around all over OMSI (and again, you have a membership) then hey! I'd go too.

Anonymous said...

Fun visit to the museum. Love those bookends!

Janet said...

I LOVE your bookends. And the exhibit looks like fun indeed!

Shonya said...

"almost jealous" as well! :) And VERY cool bookends. What fun you are having!!!

Narnia_girl said...

Kudos for trying to make Turkish Delight. I think that stuff is nasty.

Mirlandra said...

I have had Turkish delight in England and I'm rather unimpressed though fun once. Your recipe is wrong - if that helps... It's missing the key ingredient of rose water which is hard to find around here... I would try Bon Appatit or an English cookbook...

Stephanie Kay said...

Fun! I wonder if this is a traveling exhibit. Every recipe I've seen for Turkish Delight has rose water listed in the ingredients.

Carrie said...

Well, that (the missing ingredient) certainly helps to explain it! (Mine tasted T-E-R-R-I-B-L-E!)

Thanks for the tip. ;) Not sure if I'd try making it again or not. I'd certainly try eating it again - but I'd like to taste the real deal.

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