Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Read With Me Wednesday: Come On, Rain!

I am keeping up with my Read With Me Wednesday, which I started right before our quarter-life-crisis/blogging break!  This Wednesday I choose one of my favorite summertime books.  It is a story about a little girl who is so hot and just wants it to rain. 

Come On, Rain!
Written by Karen Hesse
Illustrated by Jon J. Muth


Up and down the block,
cats pant,
heat wavers off tar patches in the broiling alleyway....

I stare out over rooftops,
past chimneys, into the way off distance.
And that's when I see it coming,
clouds rolling in,
gray clouds, bunched and bulging under a purple sky.

A creeper of hope circles round my bones.
"Come on, rain!" I whisper.


The poetry Karen Hesse uses paints such vivid pictures, you can feel the heat of the summer and the joy of the rain.  And did you know that Karen Hesse is a Newberry award winning author.  She won the 1998 Newberry award for her book Out of the Dust, which is also a great read, but have a box of tissues.  Hope you enjoy this great summer read!

Stuck In My Head

Do you ever see something and it just gets stuck in your head.  I have a few crafty/baking projects that I can’t stop thinking about.  I wish I had a reason to make them . . . The only reason I can come up with is my little one’s birthday is coming up, but I’m not sure they tie together . . .


Project #1


Found via Edible Crafts

Tutorial HERE over at Woman’s Day

Cutest cake I’ve ever ever seen!

I reminded me a lot of these cupcakes Bakerella did a while ago. 



Project #2image

Again from Bakerella, what can I say the woman is a genius! 

She posted about these Cake Pops a few weeks ago and I have been obsessing over them in my mind since then. 





So what theme could I use for a two year-old girl’s birthday party in a month that would let me use these great ideas?

Monday, July 26, 2010

Coming Back With a Bang! Cafe Rio Sweet Pork

I have neglected this little blog, but have kind of missed it.  So I’m going to try to post more.  And as the title says, I am coming back with a BANG!


I love this place:


I tell my husband I could never move to Oregon (where he is from, where my child’s grandparents live, where he DREAMS of living) because they don’t have Cafe Rio.

But let’s be honest, we are on a budget and in reality cannot eat there EVERY night.

I have found a pretty great substitute for my Cafe Rio sweet pork cravings.  It takes some time a prep, mostly marinating and shredding the pork.  But is super simple and absolutely de-lish-e-ous!  I love to have it on Sundays because it’s a throw it in the crock pot kind of meal. 

Here’s the recipe courtesy of Favorite Family Recipes (which is a great blog, and would be even if it didn’t have this awesome recipe).


Cafe Rio Sweet Pork


2 pounds pork (we use boneless pork rib meat)  {Ash Note:  I used about 2 1/2 pounds and served five adults with quite a bit left over.}
3 cans Coke (NOT diet) {Ash Note:  My SIL said she uses Dr. Pepper and loves it.}
1/4 c. brown sugar
dash garlic salt
1/4 c. water
1 can sliced green chilies
3/4 can enchilada sauce (I use Old El Paso brand, medium spiciness but any will work)
1 c. brown sugar

Put the pork in a heavy duty ziploc bag to marinade. Add about a can and a half of coke and about 1/4 c. of brown sugar. Marinade for a few hours or overnight.

Drain marinade and put pork, 1/2 can of coke, water, and garlic salt in crock pot on high for about 3-4 hours (or until it shreds easily, but don't let it get TOO dry) or on low for 8 hours. Remove pork from crock pot and drain any liquid left in the pot. Shred pork.  {Ash Note:  I do this part while we are at Church.  And I find the pork shreds better if it is cooled down.}

In a food processor or blender, blend 1/2 can Coke, chilies, enchilada sauce and remaining brown sugar (about a cup, you can add a little more or less to taste..). If it looks too thick, add more Coke little by little.
Put shredded pork and sauce in crockpot and cook on low for 2 hours. That's it!


We use the fresh tortillas you can by at Sam’s and Costco, my MIL in Oregon says she finds hers at Walmart, but I’ve never found them there here in Utah.  Also next time we have this am going to get those little tin/aluminum round disposable dishes Cafe Rio serves their food in.  I saw a three pack at the Dollar Tree the other day!