Book Update: I finished “The Secrets of Happy Families” by Bruce Feiler while on vacation since it was a suggested book by Amazon. I think a lot of it could be applied to classrooms as well – especially elementary classrooms. The book is thoroughly researched with hundreds of books and authors referenced that are the top of their fields. Some of the things I found unconventional … and therefore interesting were:
1. Creating a family manifesto
2. Family meetings (I’ve seen these mentioned in magazines before)
3. Family dinner is important. Like really important. Family dinners resulted children with higher self-esteem, better vocabularies, higher academics, fewer behavioral problems, and more resilience. It doesn’t have to be dinner. It could be breakfast or a late dessert.
4. Kids should not be allowed to “duke it out” before age 8. They really should have parental assistance in their squabbles before this age.
5. You can have kids pick their own punishments, check off their own chores, etc.
6. Adapt. Adapt Adapt. My notes: I wonder if this is the most pressing flaw in Education – mainly public. It is so large (and government funded) that it is simply is difficult to adapt to the changing times and changing children. Similarly, families have to adapt to their growing children as well. A smart board does not make a smart child.
Recipe Update: This was quick and easy. I liked it with added toppings below and trying to use different cooking methods for similar recipes in order to create one recipe that you can make several ways depending on time constraints. The BBQ sauce was thin after cooking, but could be boiled a while to thicken it if you wish for a sauce.
**My camera battery died, so this is a phone photo.**
Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast
16-18 oz. BBQ sauce (purchased or one of my favorite recipes for BBQ sauce is below)
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 Tb. Worcestershire sauce
Optional toppings: smoked gouda cheese, red onion slices and cilantro
1. Mix the sauce, sugar, vinegar and sauce in the slow cooker. Add chicken.
2. Cover and cook HIGH 3-4 hours or LOW 4-6 hours.
3. OR you can bake in the oven in a sprayed 7×11 or 9×13 pan at 400 degrees for 30 minutes or until it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees.
4. Serve and eat! Toppings are delicious, but optional. To melt the cheese I placed them on top of the cooked chicken and placed a piece of foil over the whole pan. The cheese melted in 5 minutes and the chicken stayed hot.
2 cups ketchup
1 cup water
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
5 Tb. light brown sugar
5 Tb. sugar
1/2 Tb. black pepper
1/2 Tb. onion powder
1/2 Tb. ground mustard (I think I omitted this once because I didn’t have it. Still tasted good!)
1 Tb. lemon juice.
1 Tb. Worchestershire sauce
1. Dump all this stuff in a sauce pan over medium heat. Boil. Reduce to simmer.
2. Simmer for 75 minutes. Since it is a sauce you can store it in the fridge, or freeze in bags for later!
BBQ sauce recipe from The Neely’s on the Food Network