A Beverley Cleary The Mouse and The Motorcycle Food Art Lunch Recipe

Monday, March 29, 2021

A Beverley Cleary The Mouse and The Motorcycle Food Art Lunch Recipe

 If you talk to my family about children's books for any length of time, you won't get too far into the conversation without bringing up multiple Beverley Cleary books. She impacted my wife and me, as well as our kids, with her timeless characters such as Henry Huggins, Ramona and Beezus, and more. My personal favorite story of hers was The Mouse and The Motorcycle. I read it to my kids as soon as they were old enough. 

I still remember sitting in my classroom in elementary school and reading this book for the first time. I was so engrossed in the story that I tuned out everything else around me and thirty minutes later was startled back to reality by a noise. I wanted to be like Keith and have my own mouse named Ralph who could drive toy motorcycles around. What kid wouldn't dream of this? 

My family was saddened by her passing but in honor of Beverley Cleary's life, I made my son a Ralph S. Mouse The Mouse and The Motorcycle lunch. Can you spot the references to the book in this lunchbox? 

A Beverley Cleary The Mouse and The Motorcycle Food Art Lunch Recipe

Of course, there is Ralph made out of a tortilla with a ping pong ball helmet made from white cheese. I used cream cheese for his facial features. Then there is his iconic red motorcycle which I created using strawberries and dried fruit. The headlight is a dab of cream cheese. I also glued down the pieces with cream cheese.

However, the next nod to the book is more subtle. Ralph and his motorcycle lay on top of a sandwich that is made with nut-free spread and jelly. In chapter six, Ralph requests that Keith bring him a peanut butter sandwich for breakfast, which Keith does.

A Beverley Cleary The Mouse and The Motorcycle Food Art Lunch Recipe

I had to put an apple in the side compartment of this lunch because it is an apple core in a wastebasket in chapter three which starts Ralph on his adventures. Keith eats the apple earlier but Ralph enjoys the apple core and falls asleep, only to be discovered a little while later. 

A Beverley Cleary The Mouse and The Motorcycle Food Art Lunch Recipe

The last side compartment is my own personal touch but Ralph is a mouse so he must enjoy swiss cheese, right? I say swiss cheese because as a kid I always called swiss cheese "mouse cheese" because you always saw mice going after it in cartoons. I might be reading between the lines but I think Ralph would be ok with this addition.

I hope this lunch inspires you to go read some Beverley Cleary books and enjoy your favorite stories again with your kids!

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