Crock Pot Thursday: Hearty Beef Ragu

Hearty Beef Ragu1

We do a good job of choosing family-friendly recipes here at Crock Pot Thursday, but sometimes we make something that knocks it out of the park. This Crock Pot Beef Ragu is one of those dishes. It is easy to assemble, looks beautiful, and tastes incredible. What more could one want? I didn’t actually make this on a Thursday like I usually do, but instead made this on a snowy Sunday. Snow days compel me to bake, so on this particular Sunday, I tried my hand at homemade noodles. It was more fun than folding the laundry that was waiting … Continue reading

Tips for Taking Kids to Church

Tips for taking kids to church

“I’ll go to church when the kids are older.” “I’m too busy keeping them quiet to get anything out of it anyway.” “People give us looks when we bring the kids.” These are all things I’ve heard friends say, and are thoughts I’ve had myself. I like taking my kids to church, but this hasn’t always been the case. In fact there are still some Sunday mornings when I wish ours was a church that whisked the little ones off at the beginning of the service and returned them at the closing hymn. Usually, though, I love celebrating my faith … Continue reading

The Long Winter

The Long Winter

We are halfway through February, and my kids have had it up to here with the weather. “Is winter almost over?” they ask hopefully. Every morning they come downstairs, rubbing their eyes and asking in scratchy, sleepy voices, “Is there school today?” and “Do we have a delay?” I try really hard to not complain about the choices our school district makes when it comes to weather-related closures. I’m not the one in close contact with the city and their plows, I haven’t consulted with the police department regarding the safety concerns of an entire fleet of school busses on … Continue reading

Valentine’s Day Cards for Real Couples

Hilarious Valentine's Day cards for real couples!

Happy Valentine’s Day! If you’re like me, you spent some time this week searching for the perfect card for those you love. You opened and closed countless cards that declared sentimental love in frilly writing on a floral background. If the cards don’t have fancy sentiments, they have sexual innuendos. I was looking for cards with my kids in tow, so my hunt ended around the time my seven-year-old asked, “Mom? Why does this card say ‘SEX?’” We needed to get out of there, and I grabbed one that had no flowers and was as plainspoken as one can expect … Continue reading

Crock Pot Thursday: Zuppa Toscana

Zuppa Toscana1

Valentine’s Day is this week, and everywhere you turn there is declarations of love. Not even on a blog post about soup are you free from Cupid’s influence, because I am here to tell you right now that I love this soup. If I could send a Valentine to this Crock Pot Zuppa Toscana, I would. I may buy it flowers. I’ll buy it chocolates and then eat the chocolates because what’s soup gonna do with chocolate? Now if you search for Zuppa Toscana on the world wide web, you’ll get a trillion recipes that claim to be copycat versions … Continue reading

Crock Pot Thursday: Chicken Doritos Casserole

Chicken Doritos Casserole1

I love Doritos. One time in college, I was chowing down on a bag of Cool Ranch Doritos and my neighbor offered to buy the crumbs from the bottom of the bag off of me. As I licked the Doritos dust off the tips of my fingers, I thought about her offer. Ultimately, I declined her proposition, because in that moment, no amount of money could be traded for the dregs at the bottom of that crinkly blue bag. That right there is a true testament of my affection for tasty tortilla chips. My friend Susan from Divine Secrets of a … Continue reading

Crock Pot Thursday: Sausage and Peppers

These Crock Pot Sausage and Peppers are delicious and super easy to make! | |

Oh, boy, you guys! These Crock Pot Sausage and Peppers are so simple, and so good! I’m a huge fan of sandwiches the size of my head, and also love me an easy recipe, and this dish was a winner on both of those fronts. Some people like long walks on the beach; I like big ol’ sandwiches that are easy to make and messy to eat. I did struggle with this recipe, though. I knew I wanted sausage and peppers to be served on a hoagie, but I didn’t know if I should add marinara sauce to the slow … Continue reading

Easy Homemade Stain Remover

This simple homemade stain remover really works! | |

Yesterday, both of my kids came downstairs dressed in white – a white tee for Graham, and all white for Lily. They looked like they were ready for a day on Nantucket, but all I could see were the future stains down their fronts. As I gave them morning hugs, I thought, “Dang, my kids have stinky breath,” and also “I need to make up a fresh batch of stain remover.” I’m turning into quite the homesteader, first by growing a few vegetables, next by creating homemade centerpieces, and now I’m mixing up homemade cleaners on occasion. If my husband would let me … Continue reading

Crock Pot Thursday: Clam Chowder

Clam Chowder3

Sometimes we choose a recipe for Crock Pot Thursday that is an all out winner. Everyone loves it, and even with a few modifications based on the whims of the individual cooks, the dish turns out fantastic. This Crock Pot clam chowder is one of those recipes. It’s crazy to me that in the more than two year history of weekly slow cooker recipes, this is the first clam chowder we’ve made. What an oversight! I love clam chowder. I love eating it on the docks in the summer, with the salty breeze on my cheeks and the sounds of … Continue reading

Making the Case for New Year’s Resolutions

Making the case for New Year's resolutions.

I think New Year’s resolutions get a bad rap. Sure most people don’t follow through with their plans, and sure I’m one of those people, but there is something wonderful about using the resetting of the calendar to attempt to reset our lives. About us collectively deciding as a society that January 1st is when we will all do that. I’m guessing the reason so many people abandon their goals early on is because those people weren’t ready to make changes in the first place. Like that time when I agreed to see a Batman movie with my husband, my … Continue reading