What is a monkeybox?

When I was a little girl, we had a pet monkey named Amanda. My Dad worked in the produce business, so each night he brought home that days culls in a big box - spotty cucumbers, pithy apples, limp celery, moldy oranges and the like. We called it a monkeybox. It was really just trash, but my Mom would take each piece of fruit and trim it, pare it and cut it up to make a beautiful fruit platter for Amanda. Even though it was deemed trash by one, it still had life left in it and was good for the purpose we needed it. That's how I live my life - thrifting, yard saling, looking for another's trash to be my treasure.

Monday, April 21, 2008

A Little Homework Help Here? Please?

Okay Blog Buddies. I mentioned back last fall that I might call upon my blog buddies and blog readers to help me and The Bean with a little Homework Help. Today we are starting a study unit on the states, state capitals, etc. I can go online and see the flower, map, crop, and all that other run of the mill yawn fest stuff that no one really ever needs to know. Besides, he already did that in the 3rd grade! I am wanting to know about a unique thing in each state. Something you might know, but someone in another state hundreds of miles away might not know. For instance I know of an eight foot tall bunny in my state of Arkansas. And Dinosaur World that I visited as a child. Why did they decide to put Dinosaur World in a little hole in the way town in Arkansas? What was the purpose? Is is it still open? Etc.

Here's what I am hoping you will help me and The Bean with now. Leave a comment here or email us at monkeybox@juno.com with a weird or interesting place in your state or something that you find interesting about your state. You don't have to tell us about it. That's the point. We are going to look them all up and learn about them. If you live in one state and have ties to another state - maybe you could help us with both states. We will use this to learn new things, make lists, practice handwriting, use computer skills and a plethora of other educational skills.

We are studying Hawaii right now, so if anyone knows anything interesting about Hawaii, drop us a note too. I've been there, but that was BM/BB (Before marriage, Before Bean) so I am sure there are many new things there.

If you leave a comment or send us an email, I will throw your name in the cookie jar and draw a name out to receive a package from me and The Bean. I'm not sure what it will be, but it will be good, I promise you! I like to send goodies especially for the WINNER, so I prefer to make a box for them, rather than just randomly hunt and gather.

Thanks buddies! From me and The Bean.


  1. hmmm...well I'm a bit biased but I think Maryland is a very interesting place. It holds a lot of history too...so you should look into the red, white, and blue buoy under the Key bridge (the war of 1812 is important in this story)...we have the mason-dixon line....there's Nipper the RCA dog, and there used to be the world's largest trash can (who knew?), apparently there's a giant fiberglass pineapple, the shot tower, edgar allen poe house and grave, world's largest rubberband ball (98-06), Testudo the Terrapin, a statue of Kermit the Frog and Jim Henson, Enchanted Forest (which is featured in the original Hairspray and Crybaby)... roadsideamerica.com is a cool site for interesting things in different sites (for planning road trips of course!)

    The war of 1812 was really important, and pretty interesting too.

    I'm sure I've given you way more than you needed, hopefully you'll learn more about our area.

  2. The Alamo in San Antonio,Tx is probably the main piece of history for Tx.

    There is the Battleship Tx, Enchanted Rock,a house made out of bottles(not sure where it is,tons more missions if you are interested in the history stuff(know you are).

    I'll have to do some more digging and see if I can come up with something unusual about Tx.

  3. I can probably do Utah and Colorado for you. Let me see what I can dig up! I might also be able to find something for Georgia, even though I only lived there a short time. I'll get thinking!

  4. Hmm...Minnesota...there must be something interesting about this state! :) J/k, its been a great place to grow up and live in.

    I'll give you a few choices and you can pick what you want to research...
    1. The birthplace of the first indoor mall!
    2. Home of the walleye capitol of the world (which happens to be my hometown) Baudette MN
    3. SPAM museum in Austin, need I say more?
    4. Giant spoon and cherry sculpture near downtown Mpls

    What a fun project! I hope I gave you a few ideas!

  5. Anonymous2:20 PM

    we are the buckeye state-we are the buckeyes!! besides a great football team-what is a buckeye?
    (hint: I have them in my yard and we carry them in our pockets in the fall for good luck)
    we also have a rock'in museum in a city to the north from me. (hint: I live in the capitol city)
    we have 2 baseball teams and 2 football teams-both professional!!

  6. Here are a few fun facts about California:
    The birth of the Internet was sparked from the campus of UCLA in 1969 when professor Leonard Kleinrock needed a way to communicate between campuses.

    Cool Californian inventions: Barbie Dolls, blue jeans, the boysenberry, the pill, white zinfandel wine, the square tomato, natural soda, the computer "mouse," the wetsuit, and theme parks.
    Also, San Bernardino County is the largest county in the entire United States.

  7. We've got the largest wildfire in the last 13 years burning in our neighborhood right now. Minnewaska Preserve in New York would be interesting to look up right about now...He could learn about brush burning and blueberries and the Native Americans too, it's all kind of interesting.

  8. We are in PA, and there are lost of cool things to see and do here. Some
    things that would be fun to research
    would be the Natural Bridge and our Grand Canyon :) We also have Gettysburg with all the battlefield things.The thing my our kids like best about visiting the battlefield is Devil's Den. hope this helps :)
    Sounds like a fun project!


  9. Hmmm... Florida. There is a place called "Spook Hill" not too far from me. I grew near the "Horse Capital of the World". Florida is a strange place, so if think of anything else I will post it!

  10. Anonymous5:59 PM

    Here are my two contributions on Hawaii - hope they are helpful!

    1)Jurassic Park was filmed on the islands of Oahu and Kauai in 1992. But the island the zoo-amusement park is supposed to be just off Costa Rica.

    2) The State Flag is the only flag in the United States that actually features another country's flag - Great Britain's Union Jack! The State Flag symbolizes Hawaii as a kingdom, protectorate, republic, territory and finally a state. The Union Jack is featured in the upper left corner, while the rest of the flag is comprised of 3 alternative stripes of red, white and blue.

  11. Well, I see that OliveOyl already brought up Texas and the Alamo but it's a big state and we have a lot to offer. Glen Rose is a good place, if you are looking for dinosaur info. Specifically footprints, including one that has a human footprint in/on it. Fredericksburg has the Chester Nimitz WWII museum. There's a lot!

  12. Anonymous6:43 PM


    Rockford Illinois home of the Rockford socks. The Rockford socks were used to make the sock monkeys.

    Camp Grant prisoner of war world 11 in Rockford Il.

    Home of Cheap Trick Rick Neilson.


  13. A co-worker told me about the "Cadillac Ranch" in Tx. She is from another part of Tx. so I know nothing about this ranch.

    The movie "Best Little Whorehouse in Tx." was filmed not far from me. Might not want to do much research on that one since it is based on a true whorehouse. :)

    Our state bird has been tormenting my cat the past few days. Guess they like the warm weather and the fact that the "puddy tat" can't get to them.

  14. NEW YORK... (NOT 'The City'!)
    -Finger Lakes & Lots of wineries 8D
    -Howe Caverns
    -Cooperstown Baseball Hall of Fame
    -Rochester = Lou Gramm (Foreigner!)
    -Rochester home of Eastman KODAK Co.
    -Thousand Islands
    -Several Canal Systems
    -Watkins Glen
    -Waterloo is the Birthplace of Memorial Day.
    -Seneca Falls & Susan B. Anthony
    -Auburn & Harriet Tubman
    **Bonus questions:
    "What connection does the purchase of Alaska have with Auburn, NY?"
    "Where & What is the only known Louis Comfort Tiffany interior still in existence?"
    "What is the site of the first commercially successful system of sound film - invented in 1923."

    You should have The Bean research your 'white pottery' manufacturers. Several years ago we did a 'vacation' to check out as many of the Potters as we could find - I researched their history first and found it pretty cool. Gave me a whole new appreciation for them too 8-)

    Okay, enough!! I am a transplant from the Southern Shores of Lake Ontario (near Rochester) and I now live in Central NY,in the middle of the FingerLakes, and this area takes their HISTORY Very Seriously, so it has been DRILLED into my head!!

    Have Fun!!

  15. Here are some things I found about NC:

    1. "Esse Quam Videri" - To Be, Rather Than To Seem - our state motto
    2. The first powered flight ever happened at Kitty Hawk, NC
    3. NC contains the tallest mountain east of the Mississippi River - Mount Mitchell
    4. The first English settlement in the New World was in NC - The Lost Colony that no one knows what happened to!
    5. NC is the longest state east of the Mississippi River at 560 miles long
    6. The largest, privately owned house in America is Asheville's Biltmore House
    7. NC boasts the most outdoor dramas of any state, we also had the first outdoor drama - The Lost Colony that details the first English settlement
    8. The Hatteras Lighthouse is the tallest brick lighthouse in the US
    9. Pepsi Cola was invented in North Carolina 100 years ago in 1898
    10. North Carolina was the last state to secede from the Union during the Civil War
    11. North Carolina was named in honor of King Charles I (no, I do not know how Carolina comes from Charles!)
    12. Belmont Abbey was the first abbey cathedral in the Western Hemisphere
    13. The top industry in the state is Textiles, followed closely by Furniture

    **13 could be interesting to research a bit, Highpoint and Thomasville are the furniture capital of the world I do believe--it's a major draw every year when they do the furniture market. Of course textiles is dying out and moving elsewhere as most manufacturers have, but we still make tons of textiles for the country, alot of furniture textiles are created in a small manufacturer nearby me--by Carthage Fabrics. My x's Mom is a weaver at the mill--she's given me a TON of fabric that were rejects or end of the looms that are just amazing...if only I could actually sew I'd be in business!

  16. I see my sister reallu covered the great state of Maryland (geesh) and as I know nothing about the STATE of NY, I'll do New York City. We were once called New Amsterdam. Why? And this miht count as New YOrk State butu there is a little town just north of NYC called Sleepy Hollow. :) There is even a very famous (to fiction) bridge there. The park I live near is Flushing Meadow. A very exciting thing happened there in 1968 that including some fascinating time capsules and "the mother ships" from Men in Black. There is also a complete minature of the city of New York in a museum there.

    Okay I could go on but I'll give you a break. ;) You should just come here and we'll do a history lesson.

  17. Anonymous11:33 AM

    Hawaii is the only state that grows coffee and there are only 12 letters in the Hawaiian alphabet.

    Georgia - my home state

    Okefenokee Swamp, Cumberland Island,Six Flags Theme park
    Stone Mountain, Gainesville (Chicken Capital of the World)
    Masters Golf Tournament - Augusta, GA
    Home of Coca-cola and Home Depot
    Dahlongea (Da lon eh ga) Gold Rush
    Home of Jimmy Carter - Plains, GA
    Callaway Gardens, Steam locamotive in Kennesaw, GA

    So I live in the Peach State, Cracker State or Empire of the South!!


  18. Anonymous1:23 PM

    A few interesting Iowa places, off the top of my head:
    * Snake Alley
    * Effigy Mounds Nat'l Monument
    * Amana Colonies
    * Kate Shelley Bridge and RR Museum

    --Mary aka MAMinCR from YSQ

  19. Hawaii has the only known green sand beach in the world on the Big Island.

    South Carolina grows more peaches than Georgia - even though Georgia is known as the Peach State.

    The state snack of SC is the boiled peanut and the state craft are the sweet grass baskets that the Gullah people make. For an interesting subject, you can research the Gullah. They have their own festival every year.

    SC has one if not THE oldest golf course in the country - specifically in Aiken. It is called the Palmetto Golf Club. Golf actually originates from SC.

  20. Anonymous6:54 PM

    Well guys, there is alot that goes on in Florida. In Tampa, there is a pirate invasion every February that celebrates the pirate Jose Gaspar. We have many sports teams including a hockey team that won the Stanley Cup. Pretty funny for a state that doesn't even have snow. We have a lot of "snow birds" and tourists but some of us have lived here our whole lives. There is the Kennedy Space Center and of course Disney World and Sea World. I think one of the best parts of our state are the beautiful beaches where you can collect shells and see beautiful sunsets and if you are lucky watch Loggerhead turtles come out of their nest and scamper to begin life in the Gulf of Mexico. Have fun with your project and let me know if I can help with more information. Love your blog, I read it every day. Janet Babyx2@tampabay.rr.com

  21. What I found most interesting in Florida were the Quaker parrots.

    In Missouri? Well, St Louis is home to more "inventions" than you could ever imagine! You could google yourself into oblivion there.

  22. My husband can actually say that he has seen the London Bridge both in London, United Kingdom and now in Lake Havasu City, ARIZONA!
    You can read more about it here-

  23. Anonymous11:12 PM

    well, Annette did some MN stuff, but here's some more obscure questions about it.

    1) What is the MN State Capital? What was its name before that?

    2) Where is the most Northern spot in MN? Can you get there by car?

    3) What actress said "There's no place like home" when asked about Grand Rapids, MN? Bonus points for her real name and stage name.

    4) What city boasts the world's biggest hockey stick?

    5) Mn has lots of official state 'things', like the loon. What is the 'unofficial' state bird? What is the state 'muffin'? Can you tell me how MN CAME to have a state muffin?

    6) John McCain is the Republican Presidential candidate. he has a 'short list' of those who could be his running mate (VP). Is there a Minnesotan on it? If so, what's his job?

    7) Why is there a section of MN called the Iron Range?

    8) Purple is a special color to Minnesotans. Why?

    9) Which singer associated with 'rollling stones' is from MN?

    10) Which LONGGGGG river starts in MN? Where? Can you straddle it at the beginning?

  24. What a great project!
    Here in Massachusetts we have a lot of obvious colonial and Revolutionary War historical stuff (Plymouth Rock, Freedom Trail/Old North Church, Lexington/Concord battleground, Bunker Hill, etc.) but two Mass. cities with really interesting 19th-century histories are Lowell (cotton mills, "mill girls") and New Bedford (whaling industy). There's a great museum in each city focusing on those things as well that you can probably find by Googling. Also, I think it would be fun to incorporate some local cooking projects as you go. For Massachusetts you could do what the Pilgrims/Indians really ate on the first Thanksgiving, or make some New England clam (or corn)chowder, Boston baked beans, find out what "scrod" really is, homemade cranberry sauce... actually, even researching how cranberries grow and are harvested would be cool! Enjoy!
    --sarabeth in Somerville, MA

  25. I just got home from a couple of days in Jerome, AZ...an old mining town full of history. Of course, here there's the Grand Canyon, but that's something everyone knows about! The original London Bridge resides in Lake Havasu City, Az.about an hour from me. Four Corners is a place in Northern AZ where you can stand in AZ, Utah, New Mexico and Co all at the same time! : ) The worlds largest solar telescope is in Sells at the Kitts Peak National Observatory. 1/2 of the Hoover dam is in AZ...the other half is in NV. There's lots more...but I'll leave it at this for now! Have fun!


  26. Anonymous11:52 PM

    we use to travel to alabama on vacation, so i will just name off a the cool stuff we never got to see because my mom woudn't stop!
    1) helen keller's birthplace
    2) hiter's typewriter
    3) the statue of vulcan- levi's once made a pair jeans for this statue; once you see how big it is, you will appreciate the undertaking.

    aso there is a cool fountain at place caed ofur points south. what is the significance of the animals?

    now, go forth and google!

  27. Anonymous1:18 PM

    Forgot to mention, Riverside, Iowa, is the future birthplace of Capt James T Kirk. FYI. :)

    --Mary aka MAMinCR from YSQ


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