Make your own MONOPOLY

It was my mom's 60th birthday, and we were planning to go on a family vacation. My sisters and I wanted to make her something special, and one of the many things that we produced for her birthday (T-shirts, private movie screening, photo album, a short clip etc..) we also decided to make her a costume monopoly board, featuring some of the milestones in her life.

I could not have done this without finding this amazing monopoly - photoshop template created by Brad, and without the help of my lovely, two older sisters.
Here's what you do:

Plan your board. decide what do you want to write in each square. Download the Photoshop files from Brad's site. Change the squares according to your plans, add photos or cartoons when necessary. create the property cards accordingly. Note that the board size is about 60x60cm, though you can always make it smaller.

Decorate the board with family photos. That's a matter of preference and taste. Just make sure you have some family photos on the computer, crop them as desired and add them to the board. Best is to use the "Extract" command in photoshop (under the filter menu).
Chance / Community chest- we changed that to surprise/ greeting. the thought was that the players will fill the cards with greetings for my mom and surprise gifts or tokens they wish to give her. we made some empty cards for that purpose.
Make the houses and hotels. we couldn't find any Monopoly hoses on stores and it was too late to buy some on ebay, so we made some. We bough 1x1cm wooden cubes. For the houses, we glued little roofs on them  made of a red paper stripe. For the hotels, we just glued two cubes together.  
Make the money. since it was our mom's birthday, we chose to make money with her face on it. We took a good profile picture of her, used the sketch filter in photoshop and placed her face in the center of a Monopoly bill. After I had that, I just changed the value of the bills. You can then print the bills on colored paper, and get some costumed Monopoly money. 
Make the players. we had a lot of ideas, but due to shortness of time we choose some figures out of the "toy a day" site. we made little heads of the family players and glued them on the folded toys.

We printed the board in a printing shop along with everything else, but if you have a colored printer you can print the things at home. We glued the board on some hard board carton to make it strong enough, and to make sure it doesn't wrinkle. We also made a box out of used carton.  
That's that. I can not say that it's not a lot of work, cause it is, but it made our mom so so happy, so I guess it was worth it.

Happy birthday mom!


The BEST Challa

I did not write in a very long time, I know. but hey- I was finally doing some of the things I should, like writing papers and taking exams and other obligations. add to that the social revolution we have going on, and that leaves me very little time to write, or procrastinate, or both.

(check out the revolution chronicles page, in Hebrew)

So I'm making up for all the "not writing" by sharing with you the recipe for the BEST Challa you have ever tasted. It's tall and sexy, smells wonderful, with a sweet aroma and a perfect crumb: Not fibery-like the 4-bread Challa, not a crumb like the simple Challa, that yields a great bread that is too low to my taste- but a perfect, tall and lovely soft soft crumb. Can't really describe it. You'll have to try.

BEST Challa
this recipe will yield 2 big loaves, ~600gr each

4t dry yeast (24gr)
1 1/4 cup warm water (300ml)
1/3 cup sugar (60gr) +1t
1t salt
40gr olive oil
~6 cups bread flower (650-700gr)
2 eggs
10gr baking improver (1T)
17gr gluten powder (~2T)

1 egg yolk with 1T of water
sesame seeds

  1. Put the dry yeast with 1 teaspoon of sugar and a bit of the water and wake them up.
  2. in a mixer bowl, mix the flowers, the sugar, gluten powder and baking improver and salt.
  3. add the waken yeast and the rest of the water, and mix.
  4. add the oil; scramble the eggs and add them too.
  5. Mix until you've reached a medium-high level of  gluten development. The dough should be soft to touch.
  6. let the dough rise in a lightly oiled container until doubled, 40min-1hr. Make sure you don't over-proof it, or it won't rise when you bake it.
  7. Deflate the dough, divide to two batches (for two loaves) and then again to 4 (I made 4-strings Challa). Preshape the dough into small rolls, and let rest for about 5 minutes. Open the rolls into strings (like in a baguette) while gently pressing with both hands and rolling the dough roll on a lightly flowered counter. 
  8. Braid your Challa (braiding instructions here) and rest for about 45min, covered in a plastic bag.
  9. Cover the loaves with egg yolk diluted in water, and spread some sesame.
  10. Bake 240C for 20min with steam, then 180C 20 min without steam. If it's already golden after first 20min, cover with baking paper to avoid burning. 
 Of course, this was submitted to YeastSpotting (:


Related Posts