What I've Been Up To

I'm here! I'm alive!

I've gotten a few emails asking if I'm okay.

I am, and the idea that there are REAL people out there who worry and care about me is totally freaky and extraordinarily neat (yes, neat. I thought for a full 4 seconds on what adjective to use here, and I chose neat. 

all on my own. 

I need to stop watching Silver Spoons reruns on Nick at Night).

I'm working on the slow cooker manuscript---I've got the copy edits back and I'm working my way through them----it's due back in a few days, so I'm feeling kind of scatter-brained. 

It's a little disheartening to get a pile of papers back with red writing scrawled everywhere, but I've been told that it's all good, and most of the red stuff is not for me, but for the graphics people.

We have a finalized name, now, too! Make it Fast, Cook it Slow: The Big Book of Everday Slow Cooking. I like the name a lot.
This is my living room. And since I like keeping it real and all, there's the laundry that I should have put away, but instead I'm hoping magical elves will come do it for me. 

I'm not following my own list of chores.



The slow cookers are nestled under the kitchen countertop, and they are currently empty. I have not planned anything for dinner. which means I've again not followed my own advice.

~~double sigh~~

We're probably going to have leftover baked bean soup that I made the other day but haven't gotten around to posting.

~~~triple sigh~~~

it tasted pretty good, though. I made it vegetarian. It could have used some bacon, probably.

or maybe Adam will pick up Taco Bell. Adam?

Thank you so much YET AGAIN for all of your complete and utter awesomeness.

and patience.

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Posted by: Stephanie O'Dea | A Year of Slow Cooking at April 15, 2009

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What they say about this article

  1. I've been checking both blogs, just to be sure. I am very sad about the things that have happened to the babies. That shouldn't happen. EVER. The one positive thing I can offer is that the seemingly worldwide love and support is just amazing. Neat, even! The positive vibes sent to those aching families make me feel a little better about the world.

    Good luck on meeting your deadline. Red marks on something we made never feel good, even if they're not for us!

    I can't wait to see the bean recipe. 6YO loooooooves her some BEANS!

  2. When the magic elves are done with your house, will you send them to mine?

  3. I don't know you, or you don't know me, but today was the first day I've cooked one of your crock pot meals! I will be looking daily from now on b/c I think you are doing something great for SAHM's & working Mom's by sharing all of these recipes. Thanks for a great blog!

  4. I heard about your blog from a friend. I am a mother of three and married. I have been cooking from the crock pot for a month straight and I wouldn't change a thing. I love it! Thank you for blogging.

  5. Anonymous4/15/2009

    It's good to hear from you and what you are doing. I assumed you were working on a manuscript for the year of blogging. It's such a natural.

    I check on your recipes regularly, and although I rarely buy cookbooks any more, if you have one out, I'll surely buy it. Although I'd rather have an electronic copy.

    I've been a dedicated crock pot user since my children were small, and we all seemed to eat at different times. Now things are much more organized, but those years taught me the value of crock pot cooking. Thank you for all the wonderful recipes, and I hope you don't desert your blog fans.


  6. Mmmmm! Bean soup? My husband loves bean with bacon soup! If I could find a good crock pot recipe that would be great! Please post it when you get a chance! :)

    I've got BBQ chicken in my crock pot today. It's simple, but my DH loves it and he can dig in when he gets home from Youth Group.

    Hang in there! Can't wait until you publish!

  7. You have inspired me to be creative in my crockpot. . .
    Thanks for all your hard work.

  8. Hi Steph! *waves* Glad to have you back!

    Wore purple today for Madi. It's just so stinking sad.

    Hope things come along perfectly for you, and would also like to borrow your elves. :)


  9. Is there a list where I can sign up to get the elves, too? Anxiously awaiting the cookbook!

  10. Hey, I loved Silver Spoons when I was a kid! I don't have cable though.

  11. Copy editing oooh exciting!! A quick question (that I would email you, but my laptop and oulook are not on speaking terms) is what crock pot would you recomend? Mine is on its last legs and the last time I used it, it confirmed this when the knob crumbled in my hand.

  12. Every week when I'm planning my menus I search your site and find wonderful ideas... so, you just keep on giving even when you're not posting currently.
    Thanks for all the wonderful ideas/recipes you've shared with us!

  13. Hi Steph,
    I'm enjoying your new blog and trying to do the daily chores. This is embarrassing to say, but I have actually (finally) started making my bed at age 38 and 11/12. And it feels good. And there are no messed up sheets to make me angry anymore.
    Thanks for giving an update. I will plug your book whenever it is ready!

  14. I've been wondering about you! I've passed along the link to this blog to many friends and family members.

    Good luck with the book! Sounds like you need to relax with a hot cup of tea or something (or glass of wine?).

    Beans...hmmm...I haven't cooked anything with beans in it for a long time! :)

  15. I just found your blog last week. I made your chile verde yesterday and it was unbelievable. I too, am obsessed with my crock pot and I can't wait to try some more of your recipes soon! Thanks for the inspiration!!

  16. Umm seriously, I think you deserve a year long break, so no one's faulting you for taking a back seat on a chore or two!

  17. Could you tell me what you use your smallest crock pot for? I have 3, 5 and 6.5 qt. crock pots but I cook for just myself and it's difficult to fill the pots the recommended 1/2 to 2/3 full. I'd like to know about using a heat proof dish inside the larger pot.

  18. Well, I'm quite new to this crockpot thing but it certainly seems a lot easier than timing everything so dinner is on the table when it's supposed to be. I used to hate it when it was my time to cook. Thank heavens for a husband and a daughter who actually like it! :)

  19. Kathy, I've only used Crock-Pot brand slow cookers. They were formerly under the Rival label, but now just say Crock-Pot.

    Rosemary, I have a Little Dipper which is teeny tiny, and a 1.5 quart. I don't seem to see the 1.5 quarts sold any more, but I do see 1 and 2 quarts available.

    You can put an oven safe dish directly into the crockpot to create a smaller cooking vessel---stick with pyrex, corningware, or some other thick dish that you wouldn't think twice about putting into the oven. I've used glass and metal loaf and cake pans, too.

    You can also put a layer of foil over the food, and then put the cooker lid on to trap heat and steam. BE VERY VERY VERY careful removing the foil, the steam will shoot out. wear oven gloves.

    if you have other questions, go ahead and email me at crockpotlady AT gmail DOT com and I'll try my best to help.

  20. What do you use the littlest one for. I thought I get and use the 2 qt. for carmelizing onions.

  21. A new blog?? There's a new blog? Good luck on the manuscript. I, too, can't wait for the bean & bacon recipe, but as a copy editor, I know how long corrections take too.

  22. Keep up the good blogging work. I love your stuff!

  23. Taco Bell? TACO BELL? I thought you were gluten free. Is there anything at Taco Bell that's gf? Oh, wouldn't that be fun (neat?)! It's been years since we've eaten anything from there!

  24. Hi Sarah,
    it's my little one who is GF. Do your own research, of course, but we get a side of rice, a side of pintos and empty taco shells. We also get nachos, no meat.


  25. Steph--You are doing a terrific job with your balancing act. I'm so sorry about the loss of the babies. You always try to put yourself in the other parents' place and it's just devastating. Many hugs on that.

    I made jambalaya in the crockpot yesterday for our support group meeting and it was wonderful ... very much enjoyed.

    I love whenever you talk about your books! Very exciting. :-)


  26. Crockpot obsession is not un-natural. I LOVE my crockpots, but DH thinks I don't need any more. I have a big one, a medium sized, and a small one (which is PERFECT for veggies and dessert!) My dream crockpot is one with all the settings, such as a timer...but DH says I'll get spoiled, hee hee! :P Love your blog!

  27. I want to start using mine more so I will be back!

  28. I just found your blog! LOVE IT!!! Thanks for the recipes.

  29. Love your blog and am going to pass it on to several friends. Hope you will visit me sometime.

  30. Glad to hear you are ok. I have a pile of laundry over here that would rival yours and it's growing! I don't mind doing the laundry but for some reason, don't like to put it away! (Have the same problem with the dishes!)

    One question - where did you get your small shelving unit in the back of the picture? I've been looking for something like that for the front hall. Thanks!

  31. Hi Dianna,

    We got it from IKEA. We have the TV on it and the vcr paraphanalia underneath in the slots. For a while it was a table in the playroom.

    I really like it.


  32. I love my crockpot and I love this blog. Thanks for all the great recipes.

  33. Love the name of the book in progress. I'd love to buy a copy and copies for all my friends and every new wife I know! Keep the updates coming!