What is up, party people?! I’m in recovery mode right now (and a wee bit loopy) as we wrapped up Nana Camp today. For the past several years, my mom bravely hosts all 10 (or is it 11 now?) grandkids for a week of VBS and then “Nana Camp” (afternoons filled with fun activities). I think it’s 11 grandkids, but since Kaden is working out of town this summer, only 10 grandkids were here for the week. Bless her. And, bless all Nanas. And, all the people who worked VBS. Amen.
Anyway, I have two older sisters. I am much, much, much younger and more mature than my much older sisters. The previous sentence has absolutely zero relevancy to this paragraph, but I’m leaving it because I think it’s important for character development and plot lines. My oldest, Kaden, is the eldest grandchild (hello, dad, just remember who gave you that first grandson!). Five years after Kaden, my sisters and I all had girls within 9 months of each other. So, we call those three girls, “the big girls.” I know, so original. The big girls are all 14. Then, there’s a slew of kids ranging from 3 – 12 years old. They break down into “the boys” (again, with the creativity) and, wait for it, “the littles.”
My mom was
crazy lucky enough to take “the littles” to participate in Nana Camp which gave my sisters and I time to talk, eat, laugh, shop, and eat. I know I already said “eat”, but I feel it’s an important fact to mention again to accurately portray the time spent doing the twice-mentioned activity.
I was reminded this week how much I love exchanging valuable, useful, and practical information with my sisters. We talk about crafts, recipes, parenting, fashion, make-up, and pretty much everything else. Some of the best ideas, favorite meals, and successful parenting strategies originate from conversations with my sisters, so I thought I’d kick off a new series called, “Friday Favorites.” It’s like a big kid version of show and tell. And, a small glimpse into some of these conversations I have with my sisters.
I need your help, however. Would you like for each edition of Friday Favorites to be topical or arbitrary? For example, I can share my favorite books (or other specific category) in ONE Friday Favorite post, or I can share one book, one recipe, one make-up product, one idea, etc. in each post. Seriously, I want to know…I don’t want my type-A friends to get overwhelmed with the hodge podge world I live in, so if it matters to you, let me know.
(Side note: I’ve heard from several of you that you can’t leave comments on my posts. If you click on the title of the blog post, it will take you to another page where you can leave comments. I am working on getting this fixed. Please be patient with me. I’m still trying to figure out what happened to MySpace.)
I think we can all agree that I will not be sharing any technological ideas or advice on Friday Favorites. Especially since my first attempt to spell technological was incorrect. I also will not be offering any opinions on politics, mathematics, engineering feats, or home-schooling strategies. To quote my youngest, “I’d be talking out of my butt” if I did. Yes, my youngest. Go ‘head, judge me. If it helps, I would have NEVER let my oldest say the “B” word.
Bless you if you are still reading. Here’s the first edition of Friday Favorites:
Let’s go with a summer theme shall we?
Favorite Summer Read:
I have two (I’m already breaking rules). I’ve mentioned both before in previous blogs, but neither of these books will disappoint you. If you like Fiction, they are both captivating reads.
Calling me Home by Julie Kibler
Secret Keeper by Kate Morton
Favorite Summer Make-up essentials:
I have tried NUMEROUS kinds of mascara. About two 1/2 years ago, my left eye lost the middle section of its lashes. Let’s just pause and take in that visual! Anyway, that lead to a year-long pursuit of finding the very best mascara. I’m a die-hard drug store makeup user, but because of the great eyelash debacle of 2012, I tried the expensive, the moderate, and the cheap kinds of mascaras. I came back to Voluminous mascara every single time.
*I did eventually get NovaLash eyelash extensions and they are everything I ever wanted in eyelashes. I would marry them if I could. I loved them that much. But, after almost a year of wearing them, I developed an allergy to the glue. I tried to push through and suffer for fashion. I did. But, when your eyes become an artesian spring and your eyelashes itch worse than poison ivy, you’ve got to know when to fold ’em.
Favorite Summer Hair Product (For the naturally curly-haired)
If you shower before bed, use PSC on towel-dried hair and when you wake in the morning, you will love yourself, I mean, you’ll love your hair.
Favorite Summer Meal for a big group
My kiddos and I don’t love hamburgers and hot dogs. So, our go-to outdoor BBQ meal is Pulled Pork Sandwiches. I’ve already made it twice this summer.
Crock pot Pulled Pork:
1 pork roast
1 can coke/dr.pepper/pepsi
1 large bottle of sweet Baby Rays BBQ sauce
1. Put roast in Crock (make sure to put the fat side UP so that the fat will drip into the meat) and cook 12 hours on low.
Word of Warning! Let the roast cook in the garage or outside. It stinks. For realz. You will think you’ve done something wrong, but no worries, it’s supposed to be stinky.
I always start it between 8-10 PM the night before I serve it and let it cook overnight.
2. Remove meat from crock and drain all the juice from the crock.
3. Shred meat with forks. Remove all visible fat and discard.
4. Return shredded meat to crock. Add can of coke, and bottle of BBQ sauce. Cook on low for another 5-6 hours.
5. Serve on Hawaiian Bread Rolls.
6. Makes enough for 10-12 people. BUT, it freezes well!!
I serve it with Asian Ramen Slaw:
1 bag cole slaw
1 beef ramen noodle with seasoning pack
1 C. slivered almonds
1 C. sunflower seeds
3-4 green onions
1/2 C. vegetable oil
1/4 C. sugar
3 TBSP distilled vinegar
1. Toast almonds and broken pieces of ramen noodles for 8-10 minutes at 350.
2. Mix oil, vinegar, sugar and seasoning packet to make dressing.
3. Toss slaw, green onions, sunflower seeds, noodles, and almonds.
4. Pour dressing over salad and serve.
Favorite (not only summer) dating idea for those who want to woo your daughter:
This idea comes from one of my favorite instagram women. She has no idea who I am, but I am so inspired by her story, her heart for her husband, and her tenacity in parenting 3 girls–who are now grown and married. She posted this blog about how she and her husband got to know each of their daughters’ suitors. She’s a smart cookie!
Lastly, if you want to subscribe to my blog (receive it via email), click here and follow the instructions. I really am so stoked that one person, let alone more than one person, would want to read anything I write.
Y’all will always be my Favorites. Friday and all the days.