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Pumpkin Dip

For my kids nothing says Fall like some Pumpkin Dip to dip your apples into for snack time.  It’s their version of the Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte I suppose.



6oz cream cheese

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 can pumpkin (not pie filling)

2 teaspoons maple syrup

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

apple slices



Place ingredients in a bowl and beat until well blended.  Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes.

Serve with apple slices.


You may want to consider making a double batch right from the start.  You’ve been warned.


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Cooking in My Kitchen: The Slow Cooker Addition

After reading how adjusting a recipe doesn’t make it yours I am a bit reluctant to post recipes on my blog.  I know that I’m not a food blogger by any stretch of the imagination, but still I like to follow the rules as best I can understand them. 

I’m contemplating a new series where I share the recipes that I’m trying out in our home. I’m a newbie with the slow cooker (AKA Crock Pot).  Other than Turkey  Chili I’ve never used it to prepare a meal.  

With my new schedule from my 2nd job as a Chauffeur to my children, I think it’s time I embrace what many women before me have probably long known—-the ease and magic of preparing meals in a crock pot.

I cannot say enough fantastic things about this meal.  The smell alone was enough to send me to heaven and back…and it tasted even better. Try it. You’ll love it.

Slow Cooked Pork Shoulder Tacos

Adapted from Slow-Cooked Carnitas Tacos / Bon Appetit April 2008

3 lb pork shoulder 

2 tsp Kosher Salt

3 tsp Fresh Black Pepper

2 tsp Dried Oregano

1 Bay leaf

2 cups of chicken broth

2 tablespoons of olive oil

1 Jalapeno

juice from 1 lime

2 Tablespoons cumin

1 large onion (quartered)

1 avocado


 Optional Toppings

shredded mexican cheese


Sour cream



Mix Kosher Salt, Black Pepper, and oregano in a bowl.

Rub olive oil and spice mixture (above) onto Pork.

Place pork into slow cooker.

Top with chopped Jalapeno, onion, and squeeze fresh lime juice on top.

Cover slow cooker and cook on HIGH for 3 hours

Transfer pork to cutting board and shred (separate onions if you prefer)

Warm tortillas as directed

Create platter with pork and toppings &  serve

You can also check out my Pinterest Boards:  Crockery, Recipes to Try, cooking with kids, and Kid Friendly food.

What have you cooked in your slow cooker lately? 

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Cooking in my Kitchen: Zuchinni Chips Edition

I’m getting back into the cooking groove. Slowly but surely. Because I’m tired of eating “kid food” for dinner and I think it’s time the Picky Little Eaters expand their horizons. Don’t you agree?

Healthy Snack Food is on my mind and these are so delicious I really think that you forget they are healthy! For kids who don’t like spice I’d just cut back on or omit the pepper.


  • 2 small Zucchinis
  • 1/2 cup Panko Bread Crumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan Cheese (fresh or dried)
  • 1/4 tsp Kosher Salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp fresh ground black pepper (or to taste)
  • 1/4 cup milk (I use whole milk but 2% or fat free is fine)
  • Olive oil Cooking Spray

Preheat oven to 425 degrees

Spray oven proof wire rack with olive oil cooking spray and place on baking sheet OR place on a baking stone. I prefer the baking stone.

Combine all ingredients except milk in a bowl and mix with fork

Slice Zucchini in thin even slices

Dip Zucchini in milk and then dredge in bread crumb mixture

Place slices on wire rack and bake for 20-30 minutes (or until golden and crisp)

* adapted from a recipe by Linda Oldenburg in Cooking Light August 2005


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3 Ways to Please Picky Little Eaters

At the risk of my Road Warrior Husband (AKA as Big Daddy) laughing hysterically over the fact that I dare to post an advice article geared towards preparing foods for picky little eaters, I will do so anyway.

Because, if not I, then who?

 After 5 kids it would be a shame if I didn’t learn a trick or two.  Or in this case, 3.


 Jessica Seinfeld encouraged mothers to sneak vegetable puree into their children’s food and desserts via her cookbook, Deceptively Delicious and before her was the Sneaky Chef.  Now I’d like to make myself the Sandra Lee  (Semi Homemade) of Toddler foods by encouraging you to take the easy way out of doing the above by using these Mommy Helpers.

Nurturme offers dried organic fruits and veggies in convenient pouches.  They are gluten free, with no added salts, sugars, colors or preservatives.

Our favorite recipes taken from the website are:

Hearty Sweet Potato Pancakes
Prepare pancake batter (or follow boxed instructions)
add 2 puches of Hearty Sweet Potatoes and stir
Add 2/3 cups water and stir
Prepare pancakes on a hot griddle and serve warm
Plump Peas Froggy Pasta
Prepare pasta according to directions (we like angel hair)
To make sauce: combine 1-2 pouches of plump peas with 1/3 cup whole milk, then stir
Slowly pour sauce over pasta to desired consistency


It seems every Mama I know is going crazy about GogoSqueez but my favorite thing to do with GogoSqueez fruit is to make fruit leathers in my Excalibur Dehydrator.  You can use any of the 5 flavors of applesauce pouches to create quick and tasty fruit leathers.  I don’t even mind making it because it’s such a quick and NEAT process—no big kitchen mess to clean up!


  1. Line your dehydrator with a plastic sheet for fruit leathers
  2. Squirt the GogoSqueez around the center of the liner and spread so it is 1/4 inch thick at edges.
  3. Dehydrate for 3-4 hours at 135 degrees
  4.  Eat

I have no idea how to tell you store the leathers because ours don’t last that long.  However, I’ve read that you can wait until it cools, lay plastic wrap over the top and peel and roll the fruit leather.

You can order GogoSqueez on and set up a subscription (using Amazon Prime for free shipping) so that you never have to worry about running out!


Living in Sunny Florida we tend to enjoy a sweet treat.  My kids and I are now CRAZY over our Yonanas Machine. If there was stock in this thing, The Road Warrior would have bought it by now, as we’ve caused so many people to buy one…and given several as gifts.

Yonanas is the next best thing to soft serve ice cream.  Using just frozen bananas and a mix of your other favorite frozen fruits you can create a delicious cold dessertThe machine is LOUD (which makes it hard to sneak a treat without others knowing) but easy to clean and simple to use.  You truly have to taste one and you’ll be hooked.  The company website has other recipes to try for more elaborate desserts, but we tend to stick with just the traditional Yonanas.

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The Best Black Bean Soup recipe—-ever!

Lately its been in the 40′s, 50′s and 60′s in Florida.
I don’t do anything under 68 degrees so can I tell you how cold I am?

The good thing about being cold is that when I’m stuck inside I actually feel the need to cook something. So Big Daddy is very excited about this recent cold front in Florida.

Yesterday I gave Big Daddy a giant heart attack and actually cooked something, from scratch.  As opposed to just preparing the kid food and eating cereal for dinner.  Or leaving him to his own devices.

Yep, I’ve become a good wife like that.
I’m not proud, just exhausted.

As far as I’m concerned this is the Best Black Bean Soup Recipe, ever.
And I don’t even like beans.

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