Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Slow Cooker Carolina Pulled Pork

When Gracie and I went to California for my nephew's graduation, my sister-in-law made this wonderful BBQ sandwich that she got from Pinterest. I immediately decided I would make it for Robert.

  • 1 boneless pork shoulder blade roast (3 lb)
  • 1 tablespoon packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher (coarse) salt
  • 1 tablespoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 2 cups cider vinegar
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper sauce
  • 12 kaiser rolls, split  (We used regular bread.)
  • 1 pint (2 cups) coleslaw with sweet-and-sour dressing (from deli) (Optional)
  •  BBQ sauce
  • Notes:  My sister-in-law used a pork butt roast, so that's what I used, too.  I could only find a 6 pound roast, so I doubled the dry rub ingredients and increased the wet ingredients by 50% which made the crockpot almost completely full.

    1.  Trim the roast of fat.  This was a difficult procedure for me.  I think this was the first time I ever tried to handle pork, and it was not easy for me.  The fat really clings to the meat.  I didn't remove all of it, but most of it.
    2.  Mix the brown sugar, kosher salt, pepper, and paprika.  Rub all over the pork roast.
    3.  Place the pork roast into the crockpot.  Set it on low.
    4.  Mix together the cider vinegar, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, and red pepper sauce.  Pour over the pork roast.
    5.  Cook on low for 8-9 hours.
    6.  Shred the pork (I highly recommend using a mixer with the paddle attachment.)
    7.  You can put the pork back into the crockpot and mix together.  I did not.  I served from the mixing bowl.
    8.  Optional:  Mix with BBQ sauce or add BBQ sauce to your sandwich.
    9.  Some people put coleslaw on their BBQ sandwiches.

    Robert really liked it as I hoped he would.  For some reason, I didn't like cooking this.  I didn't even try to eat any of it until the next day.  The smell just didn't agree with me at all.  (No, I am not pregnant!)  I was also still kind of grossed out from handling the raw meat.  However, when I tried it the next day, I really liked it.

    My husband used the pork broth to make rice and added shrimp and cajun sausage.  He liked it, though he said it's very rich.  I ate some of it but didn't care for it that much. To each his own.

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    Saturday, July 21, 2012

    Blog Post Roundup (7/21/12)

    Here are a few posts I thought y'all might like to read.

    Recommended Blog of the Week
     Bible Class Creations
    This is a blog I just found via Pinterest.  I haven't looked at it extensively, so I don't know anything about what version of the Bible they use, but the crafts look like a lot of fun and will help the stories stick with the children!

    Other Recommended Links

    It's the Little Things @ Thimble Thoughts

    Opportunity @ Journal for Women

    My God is My Reproof of Instruction @ My God is...

    Respecting Our Children @

    Why I Don't Want to be a Fighter in the Mommy Wars @ Joyful Mothering
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    Wednesday, July 18, 2012

    Fiesta Chicken Stuffed Bell Peppers

    For Robert's birthday, I asked him if he wanted to go out to eat or did he want me to make him something special for his birthday supper.  He said to make him something special.  I asked him what did he have in mind, and he said, "Make me something exotic, spicy, and flavorful!"  I found two recipes that I wanted to try.  I can't remember the name of my first choice, but Walmart did not have one of the ingredients (Does that surprise you?  It shouldn't!), and I didn't feel like going to Kroger with a cranky toddler, so I made my second choice:  Fiesta Chicken Stuffed Bell Peppers

    I liked how I could put them in a deviled egg tray.

    • 3 cups shredded cooked chicken breasts
    • 1/2 cup sour cream
    • 1 cup (1 package) cream cheese
    • 1 cup black beans (drained)
    • 1 cup corn (drained)
    • 1/2 cup diced purple onion
    • juice of one lime
    • handful of cilantro, chopped (I used some cilantro in a tube.)
    • 2 garlic cloves (minced)
    • dash sea salt, pepper, and cumin


    1.  Cook the chicken.  I boil my chicken and use my mixer with the paddle attachment to shred it.  I think I cooked three chicken breasts which was more than enough for this recipe.
    2.  Squeeze lime juice over the chicken and sprinkle with sea salt, pepper, and cumin.
    3.  Mix the chicken, sour cream, and cream cheese.
    4.  Add the corn, beans, cilantro, garlic, and onion.  Stir until well combined.
    5.  Cut the bell peppers in half and remove the inner membranes and seeds.
    6.  Spoon the chicken mixture into the bell peppers.

    I wasn't overly crazy about this dish; however, Robert really liked it.  Good thing since it was for his birthday!


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    Monday, July 16, 2012

    Sorting Buttons

    This idea came to me a couple of weeks ago. I had this large medicine container that we were not using. I put several colored buttons in them sorted by color (and arranged according to the ROY G BIV rainbow). I left it out for Gracie to find when she woke up from her nap. She immediately saw it, I helped her open one or two slots, and she took over. She loves opening and shutting the little compartments and moving the buttons around. She even took it to church one night (along with an Easter basket so that she could take the buttons out and put them in the basket). Such a simple setup that brings a lot of fun learning!

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    Saturday, July 14, 2012

    Blog Post Roundup (7/14/12)

    Here are a few posts I thought y'all might like to read.

    One More Goodnight @ The Lighthouse Letters (This is a brand-new blog authored by my pastor's wife, Robyn Bachman.  I highly recommend subscribing or following her blog!)

    5 Ways to Be God's Friend @ The Pastor's Perspective (Guest post by Bro. Kurt Skelly)

    "Yes, Lord" Fixes Everything! @ Encouraging Words by Cary Schmidt

    Teaching Children to Share Their Thoughts @ Stephanie's Mommy Brain

    Organize Your Blog Reading @ I'm an Organizing Junkie
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    Friday, July 13, 2012

    On the Go Snack Bucket

    Gracie and I tend to be on the go quite a bit. Sometimes, I have to get her up quickly, get in the car, and go with little time for breakfast. I came up with a solution for having food ready for her that she can eat with little chance for spillage (unless she just dumps it out, of course).

    The little plastic storage container is the smallest one of four that comes in a set that I bought at Walmart.  It is small enough for Gracie to handle easily, but large enough that it can hold plenty of food for her breakfast or snacks.  It works out really well for us.

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    Wednesday, July 11, 2012

    Jalapeno Cream Cheese Poppers

    Gracie and I went to California for my nephew's graduation. He had an open house party the day after, and my sister-in-law served these scrumptious Jalapeno Cream Cheese Poppers.

    They were SO good! Once we got back home, I made them for Robert and myself.

    1 tube regular Crescent Rolls
    ~1/4 cup diced Jalapenos
     6 oz. cream cheese at room temperature
    1 Tbs. sugar

    Note: I recommend getting the jalapenos already diced in a jar.  It saves time and you are less likely to get jalapeno juice on you which can be somewhat painful and itchy.  However if you cut them up yourself, use gloves.  If you get juice on your hands, place them in milk to relieve the itching and burning.


    1. Mix the jalapenos, cream cheese, and sugar.
    2. Unroll the crescent rolls. Press the seams together so that you wind up with two solid rectangles.
    3. Spread the jalapeno-cream cheese mixture onto the two crescent roll rectangles.
    4. Roll the long side of each crescent roll rectangle so that it forms a tube.
    5. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least an hour.  This will make it easier to cut into pinwheels.
    6. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
    7. Spray your cookie sheet with cooking spray.
    8. Cut the crescent roll tubes into 16 pinwheels each.
    9. Place the pinwheels on the cookie sheet.
    10. Bake for about 13 minutes.


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    Monday, July 9, 2012

    Organizing Tool: WorkFlowy

    WorkFlowy is a new-to-me website that helps me to organize better.  I am quite the listmaker, and I'm very visual, so this is a great tool for me to use.

    The lists can be collapsed so that items that are not relevant right now do not have to be seen.  You can tell which items have items below them by the colored circle (example: Tutorials, Learn to Shoot with Me, and Photography Related).

    I actually found this website a few months ago, tried it out, and then quit using it.  I thought of it a couple of days ago, but couldn't remember the name of it.  Fortunately (and I don't remember exactly how) I was able to find it on my iPhone.  It does not have an app (though I think it should!), but it can easily be used on the browser.

    I have been keeping this website open and it makes it very easy for me to type out things as I think of them.  For example, I thought of 14 ideas for blog posts on the new photography blog I just started recently.

    Since I started this post a week or two ago, I have been using it more and more.  I have added lists for things to do in Memphis and Day Trip ideas.  It's very easy to crank out lists and arrange them.  If you click on a particular line item, it will open up a new page that shows only that line item and whatever is under it.

    Try it and let me know how you like it!

    Note:  I was not asked to do this review nor did I receive any compensation for it.  I enjoy sharing things that help me.
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    Saturday, July 7, 2012

    Blog Post Roundup (7/7/12)

    Here are a few posts I thought y'all might like to read.

    10 Signs Your Child Might Be Spoiled and What To Do About It @ Smockity Frocks

    Are You One of 4 Million Infected Computers? @ Nerd Quirks (See if you're at risk for a certain computer virus)

    What Your Children Will Never Forget @ The Pastor's Perspective

    10 Reasons I'm Thankful to Be an American @ The Pastor's Perspective

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    Friday, July 6, 2012

    Potty Training Pants and Wet Bag

    I started potty training Gracie several months ago. I have not always been very consistent with the training. There have been times due to our busy schedule or other things going on that I've been very relaxed about it. Despite that, Gracie has made progress. To date, she can go potty all by herself (though I do supervise).  In fact, she likes to order me, "Out! Out!" so she can do everything herself!  She only needs help when she goes #2 (or rather I insist on helping her because I want to make sure she gets cleaned properly. It's only been very recently that she has gone #2 on the potty with any consistency; now, she will go in the potty most of the time!

    A few months back, I saw a tutorial for altering cloth training pants to make them thicker and prettier (see the Pinterest link at the bottom of this post).  This was right at the beginning of potty training, so the timing was perfect.  I purchased nine Gerber cloth training pants from Target, some of the pretty PUL fabric, and some flannel.  They were very easy to make.  One change I made from the tutorial was to stitch the flannel ayers together before stitching it to the panties.  I had enough PUL left over to put into a wet bag for her training panties.  I used another tutorial which was for making a zipper make-up bag.  My only change was to have the zipper at the top of the bag instead of on the front.  It didn't turn out perfect, but good enough.  The tutorial was a LITTLE confusing; in fact, I had to click on some other links in her tutorial to be able to understand how to do it fully.

    Gracie really likes the new pretty panties.  When I first used them, she did NOT like it when she peed in them (that was kind of the whole idea!).  Now, if she's busy, she'll wet them and not think a thing about it.  Sometimes I will let her wear them over her pullups when I don't want to deal with wet drawers.  My favorite Pullups are the Pampers brand.  I think they're Pampers.  They're the ones with Dora the Explorer on the front.  Gracie puts them on backwards, because she likes to have Boots on the front.  Doesn't make any difference to me whatsoever.  Anyway, they are MUCH easier to put on and take off than either White Cloud or Target brand.  I didn't like Target brand because I find they leak much more easily.  The Dora pullups are a little more expensive, but worth it to me.  I haven't tried any other brands.


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    Thursday, July 5, 2012

    Making Stars in the Front Yard - an Independence Day activity

    It got up to 100 degrees today -- too hot to be outside for very long!  I wanted to do something patriotic in nature with Gracie.  I found this fun idea on Pinterest a couple of weeks ago.  {Well, I thought I did, but I can't find it on my Indepedence Day board.}

    Supplies Needed:

    Star template cut out of poster board
    Scoop (measuring cup)
    Small colander/strainer

    Gracie will show you how to do it!



    Mama's Star

     (Of course, she started talking after I stopped recording!)

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