Thursday, May 31, 2012

Deep South Eats: Baked Fried Chicken Tenders

Even though I did a baked chicken tender post recently, I just had to post this recipe for you guys. I came across these beauties one day on Pinterest and decided they were too good to be true. They have the KFC flavor without the fat of frying....sign this Southern girl up! While they lacked a bit of the crispiness of a fried tender, the taste was spot on. Belle ate them up and said it was her favorite meal ever. The best part of the whole deal was the simplicity and speed at which they were prepared. We enjoyed our Baked Fried Chicken Tenders with Green Bean and Shoepeg Corn Casserole and Apple Slices. These will definitely be a regular in our house, and I hope your family enjoys them as much as we did!
  • 1 to 2 pounds chicken tenderloins
  • Fat free or Low fat Milk (enough to cover your tenders for a soak)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon seasoning salt (Lawry's or SeasonAll)
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 cup flour
  • 2 teaspoon paprika
  • Cooking Spray
  • Soak chicken tenders in enough milk to cover for 20 to 30 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly spray a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl or gallon size ziploc bag, mix salt, seasoning salt, pepper. flour and paprika evenly.
  • Shake excess milk off of chicken tenderloins and completely coat each piece with seasoning mixture. I found it easiest to shake them all in a large ziploc bag with the seasoning.
  • Place all chicken on prepared pan and lightly spray the tops of the chicken with cooking spray.
  • Cook for 20 minutes and turn each piece of chicken. Spray the turned tops of the chicken with cooking spray and cook for an additional 20 minutes.
Original Recipe from Our Life Uncommon.

Ever have cooking questions or want to request a recipe, comment or email me at You can also visit Deep South Sweets on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest!  

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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The Sweet Life: Bloom Book Club: You're Already Amazing Chapter Five

Chapter Five of You're Already Amazing was a beautiful discussion of where God is taking us.
It contrasted God taking us to a time of being "encamped" and in wait verses God calling us to set out.
I took to heart her thoughts on our desire plan our own journey and how often we compare our journey with others.

"God has a journey for your life. It looks different than anyone else's. The road He has carved out for you is yours alone. It's always the road less traveled because you're the only one who is ever going to walk it. Oh sure, He'll give you wonderful traveling companions to go with you. But don't let that fool you: that doesn't mean their paths are the same as yours - just that they're parallel for a time."

I resonated most with the talk of encampment and the "why" of being in a time of wait.

Has God brought me into a time of wait because of:


"Making progress in life is hard work. When we insist on moving forward as quickly as possible, we can wear ourselves out in a hurry. Sometimes when God makes us wait, it's one of the most merciful things he can do. It doesn't inherently mean we have done something wrong. In fact, it can indicate just the opposite - that we're right between some really big things God has for our lives and we need to rest up."

"Our heavenly Father, in his infinite tenderness, know that sometimes [waiting] is exactly what we need most"

A Need for Healing

"If He will was our feet, will He not wash our wounds? I have a choice: Drop my guard or guard my hurts. I will choose the first."

"We want to move forward in our lives. We want to keep saying 'I'm fine' and pressing ahead as if that's really his infinite love for us, sometimes slows us down for a season so that he can heal our hearts."


"God's plans for our lives take preparation....sometimes God asks us to 'encamp' so that He can do the necessary work in our lives for His purposes."

The Timing is Not Right

"You may be 'encamped' in a way you don't understand either. God offers this hope: 'He who began a good work in you will carry you onto completion until the day of Christ Jesus' (Phil 1:6). In other words, whatever journey God begins in your life and heart, He promises to HIS perfect timing."

All quotes from: You're Already Amazing by Holley Gerth.

What has been your favorite part of the book so far (even if you are actually on track with the reading schedule)?

Ever have questions or want to request a recipe or tutorial, comment or email me at You can also visit Deep South Sweets on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest!

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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Deep South Eats: Unbundled Green Beans

For years, my family has enjoyed Green Bean Bundles at many occasions because they compliment so many different meals. The problem is that bundling the green beans is a time commitment. My small group bible study always shares a meal each time we meet, and recently my friend, Sarah, brought the most amazing green bean recipe for Unbundled Green Beans. They were different than Green Bean Bundles in flavor because they were sweet and smoky rather than savory. They were the ultimate, easy comfort food side dish.
After falling in love with them myself, I passed the recipe along to my mother as she was needing an easy side dish recipe for a large dinner party. They were a hit with every one of her guests. Since then she has cooked them for different groups of people....dinner for a family following a funeral and food for a family with a sick family member. They are always met with rave reviews, and my sweet mom has directed the recipe inquiries to my blog. It then dawned on me that I had never posted this recipe...oops! I hope that you all are able to enjoy this comfort food recipe with friends and family alike....and now when you send someone to the blog for the recipe it will actually be here!

  • 2 (14.5 ounce) cans whole green beans, drained
  • 1/3 package bacon (I prefer whatever has the lowest fat content like center cut)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. 
  • Spread green beans evenly in a 9x13 casserole dish.
  • Cut bacon into 1-inch pieces (pop your bacon into the freezer for a little bit ahead of time and it is easier to cut). Sprinkle bacon pieces evenly over green beans.
  • In a small bowl, mix together melted butter, brown sugar, minced garlic, and soy sauce. Pour evenly over green beans and bacon.
  • Bake for 45-60 minutes or until bacon appears done on top (browned and slightly crisped).
If you are not going to serve this immediately, I do recommend draining the grease off the bottom of your pan.

Original recipe that has been altered to my liking...Just a Pinch

Ever have cooking questions or want to request a recipe, comment or email me at You can also visit Deep South Sweets on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest!  

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Monday, May 28, 2012

The Sweet Life: What's on the Menu?

Have you all had a good week?
We had a very nice week getting over our jet lag and getting back into the swing of "normal".

We had a bunny building a nest (whatever a bunny home is called) in our back yard this week.
Belle sat at the window and watched for what felt like hours.
We have had so much fun looking for the bunny every morning.
Is there anything cuter than this picture of B showing the bunny her bunny?

Mark had a quick business trip to New Orleans the day after we returned from London.
No rest for the weary....
I usually try to tag along with him to New Orleans but it was just too much after being out of the country.
He doesn't travel a ton, but always tries to bring back a little something special for B.
This was by far the most elaborate but fun treat so far.

I worked this week and had a really funny delivery.
It is nice to have those nights in order to remind you why you do what you do!
Labor and delivery is a lot of fun when things are going good, but when the tough stuff happens it can be the worst job in the world.
All in all, I feel so blessed to be able to work at the nation's busiest delivery hospital and be a part of a team of excellence.

Friday night we packed up a picnic and headed up to the barn to hang out with Mark while he practiced.
Belle discovered dandelions and had the best time hunting for them across the hill.

She is just stunning to me (even though I am completely biased).

While we played, Mark was busy practicing.

Belle even got a short ride on Mr. Big.
He was in a feisty mood and just wanted to head back to the barn, but he obliged and gave her a quick ride around.
Mark even helped her with learning to steer the horse.

Saturday we got up and ventured over to Dutch Monkey Doughnuts.
I have been wanting to try it out for what seems like forever, and the timing was finally right.
Mark and Belle stuck with the classics of chocolate glazed yeast doughnut with sprinkles, but I branched out and had a salted caramel yeast doughnut bar.
It was as phenomenal as it looks.

We spent the rest of the weekend hanging out and enjoying quality family time.
I was able to knock out several adorable embroidery projects.
I can't show all the projects because some are gifts, but I LOVE this whimsical half wiener dog shirt.
I have pants to make that will match the shirt and create a fun outfit.

I am heading into this coming week having to pack to be away for two weeks.
Don't fret....there are blog posts pre-written and ready for you all to enjoy while I am away.
I will leave this coming Saturday for a week in Guatemala serving with Health Talents.
I am excited but nervous at the same time and would appreciate your prayers.
I return the following Saturday, change planes, and fly down to meet up with my family for a week at the beach.
What a blessing to wrap up a week of work with a week on the gulf with my family.

Monday: Memorial Day Grill Out with Friends - I am making a quick and easy berry cobbler.
Tuesday: Oven Fried Chicken Parmesan with Tossed Salad
Wednesday: Sweet and Sour Pork Tenderloin, Boursin Cheese Potatoes, and Steamed Broccoli
Thursday: Pizza Rolls, Fresh Fruit Salad, and Vegetable Crudite
Friday: Out to Eat
Saturday: I'll be in Guatemala

Monday: Weekly Menu
Tuesday: Unbundled Green Beans (you don't want to miss this one)
Wednesday: You're Already Amazing Chapter 5
Thursday: Baked KFC Chicken Tenders
Friday: Summer Bucket List: Cupcake Making

Don't forget to check out all the fun we had in London.

What are you guys up to this week?

I want to hear from YOU! What recipes, tutorials or projects would you like to see next week?

Ever have questions or want to request a recipe or tutorial, comment or email me at You can also visit Deep South Sweets on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest!

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Friday, May 25, 2012

The Sweet Life: London Trip and Tips for International Travel with Kids

Mark had business last week in London, so Belle and I tagged along.
Belle traveled to London and Paris when she was about 15 months old.
While that trip had some great memories, we had the best time last week with our 4 year old in London!

Get ready for picture overload....

Is the Queen home?
Buckingham Palace

Belle and Daddy

Taxi ride sitting like a big girl.

 Belle on the London Eye
Her only request was to ride the "big Ferris wheel", and it lived up to her expectations.

Belle and Mommy...excuse the tired jet lag eyes.

Playing on the playground in St James Park.

The Harrods Bear
(side note I felt a little silly taking this picture because it was in a small hallway but 10 minutes later a group of adults was taking pictures with the bear so I knew no laughs were on us"

Best lunch a girl can find...the Ice Cream Parlor at Harrods.

"All done"

After Hummingbird Bakery cupcakes and the Saturday market in Notting Hill, we needed to run wild in the park.

All that going and going makes for a beautiful, tired girl.

While taking your kids on international trips isn't for everyone, along the way, I have definitely found a few things that work well for us.
This is not an end all be all list and I am sure there are things that wouldn't work for you, but hopefully some tips will give you courage to try travelling with your kids outside the states.

Long Flights...
-Accept the fact that today is not the day for super parenting. It is the day to "get 'er done". Don't try to hyper-parent while on a plane for 8 hours. Let your kid watch as many movies as needed. Bring games (that don't make noise without headphones), coloring books and crayons, little dolls and toys that do not have lots of parts to be lost in the plane.
-Find a great set of well fitting kid's headphones. We LOVE these from Amazon.
-I say not to hyper-parent because a happy non-stressed kid and parent makes the experience for passengers around you more pleasant.
-Pack some snacks that your kid will like....raisins, granola bars, peanut butter and crackers. Some of the plane food (even the kid's meals) will not be appealing to your kid.
-Feel free to walk the aisles quietly a little making sure not to wake other passengers. It helps Belle to stretch her legs every now and then.
-Pack a full change of clothes in case of accidents.

At Your Destination....
-If possible, try to stay in a hotel that is kid-friendly. Many hotels have provided us with pack and plays or toddler cots as well as baby bath products and towels. 
-It is also nice to ask the concierge what restaurants are family friendly so you may enjoy eating "local" food while not worrying over whether your child is upsetting other patrons.
-Take the smallest stroller possible....easy for gate checking and easy for getting around towns.
-Find the best transportation option for your family. Being in a big city like London, we found that the buses were the easiest to use with B. There were no stairs and she thought it was so neat.
-Search out parks and playgrounds ahead of time. We had a playground to play on each day to help B get out her energy and get to be a normal 4 year old.
-Watch your pace. Don't try to see and do everything. Your child will be exhausted and unhappy making you irritable and unhappy. Taking your kid on a trip means you might not get to see everything there is to see or do the trendiest things to do, but you will create lasting memories.
-Think through what your options would be if your child got sick. Does the city have adequate and convenient hospitals and clinics? Do you need to buy medical evacuation insurance before hand (great and affordable for more rural, rustic destinations)? I always pack a medical kit of band-aids, antibiotic ointment, children's tylenol and motrin, and a thermometer. It gives me a little of peace of mind.

What are some questions you have for me? I would love to answer any to make you feel more courageous and comfortable to take your child on an international trip.

Ever have questions or want to request a recipe or tutorial, comment or email me at You can also visit Deep South Sweets on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest!

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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Deep South Sweets: Quick and Easy Sea Salt and Caramel Sundae

This is one of those things I really debated on whether or not to share. I wanted to share it with you guys because it was oh so good and so easy, but in reality this is not a recipe. It is simply a conglomeration of things found around the house. I feel like I always have extra vanilla ice cream sitting in the freezer taking up precious space. We buy it for when we are having guests and serving cobbler or brownies, but it is only half eaten when the guests leave. Then it is a "what to do, what to do" situation. If I am going to use up some calories eating ice cream, you better believe I am not wasting them on plain vanilla.

I have a pure love of all things sea salt and caramel. Sweet and salty describes me through and through from food preferences to personality. Out of pure necessity, I decided to try a little bowl of vanilla ice cream topped with caramel sauce and a light sea salt sprinkling. Divine I tell you, divine. I have since shared my special sundae with friends who agree it is surprisingly simple and satisfying.


  • Vanilla Ice Cream (Blue Bell of course)
  • Caramel Sauce (homemade or good old Smuckers)
  • Sea Salt
  • Scoop vanilla ice cream into bowl. 
  • Heat caramel sauce and pour desired amount over ice cream.
  • Sprinkle generously with sea salt.
  • Enjoy!
So simple I am a little embarrassed!

Ever have cooking questions or want to request a recipe, comment or email me at You can also visit Deep South Sweets on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest 

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Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The Sweet Life: Bloom Book Club: You're Already Amazing Chapter Four

Chapter Four: Why Do I Feel This Way?

Chapter Four Video

Chapter Four is a journey through our emotions and how they prove that we truly are already amazing.

This chapter made me rethink my emotions and the role they play by shedding light on the fact that "our emotions are gifts from God" and they "help us process everything we experience". It helped me analyze whether I approach my emotions with my head or my heart, and what the vulnerabilities and strengths are with each. It then helped me to examine whether I allow the emotions to rule my heart or whether I turn to God in the face of overwhelming emotions.

My favorite Chapter Four Quotes

"Our emotions display our hearts - our beautiful, broken, blessed, glorious hearts."

"There's something about recognizing our quirks and differences that brings us joy. I believe it does the same for God. After all, he's the One who created them."

"Emotions make great messengers but bad bosses...we listen to what the messenger has to share with us, then turn to our heavenly Father and ask. 'What do you want me to do?'"

"Emotion says: nobody cares. Truth says: Jesus cares for me.
Emotions says: I'm angry and will show her! Truth says: be angry and sin not.
Emotion says: I'm afraid to hear the doctor's report. Truth says: fear not, for I am with you.
Emotion says: I can't do this anymore. Truth says: My grace is sufficient."

"God, the ultimate designer, has custom created an emotional wardrobe for you. And it's beautiful. It's also essential to accomplishing His purpose for your life."

"We all have a point at which we have to choose which evidence to believe. Do we rely on our emotions alone? Or do we look into God's truth and let Him tell us what's real?....Faith is more important than emotion...At the end of the day, we've got to listen to and follow God's Spirit more than our own hearts. He's the ultimate reality check."

"God made you an emotional being. That's a beautiful, powerful, glorious thing. After all, the reason we have emotions is because God has them too. We read in the Bible about Him feeling everything from anger to sadness to joy. We have the capacity to reflect Him through our emotions because we're created in His image - every part of us."

All quotes from: You're Already Amazing by Holley Gerth.

What has been your favorite part of the book so far (even if you are actually on track with the reading schedule)?

Ever have questions or want to request a recipe or tutorial, comment or email me at You can also visit Deep South Sweets on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest!

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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Deep South Eats: Summer Strawberry Iceberg Wedge

One of my husband's favorite salads is an Iceberg Wedge Salad. Loaded up with bacon, green onion, blue cheese and blue cheese dressing, it doesn't rank really high on the health-ometer. I decided the other night to think outside the box and use what we had around the house to create a fantastic Summer Strawberry Iceberg Wedge Salad. It was definitely a hit and definitely a little healthier! The sweetness of the strawberries and the tangy balsamic all enhanced with toasted nuts was just out of this world. It was perfect served alongside a small cup of homemade mac and cheese, but it would also work well with a cup of summer chowder.

  • One head iceberg lettuce
  • 2 cups chopped strawberries
  • 1/2 cup toasted pecans, chopped
  • 1/4 cup sliced green onions
  • Balsamic vinaigrette dressing, preferably lite or low-fat (I have never made my own because I love the Newman's Own Lite Balsamic Vinaigrette)
  • Wash and dry your head of iceberg lettuce very well. Remove the bruised outer leaves and core the head of lettuce. Slice into 4 wedges (I will often stretch it to 5 wedges if I want a smaller salad).
  • Place each wedge of iceberg on a plate and top with chopped strawberries, toasted pecans, and sliced green onions.
  • Drizzle balsamic dressing over the top and serve immediately.
Don't forget to check out this morning's post of my Favorite Applique Sites (I am hoping to start a small business soon!)

Ever have cooking questions or want to request a recipe, comment or email me at You can also visit Deep South Sweets on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest 

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Deep South DIY: Favorite Applique Sites

I bought my first embroidery machine last fall as a birthday-anniversary-Christmas present.
I had been sewing for many years and was ready to add to my skills.
In all honesty, my machine sat for awhile with very little use as I was intimidated as can be.
I started with small embroidery projects and questioned the ears off of others I knew with embroidery expertise.

I quickly learned that embroidery wasn't as much my niche as applique.
I came across some wonderful tutorials thanks to Rosemary at Applique Cafe.
She gave me the complete confidence to step out and give it a go and I have since fallen in love!

I am in the process of developing a small business with a hopeful launch of mid-July.
It is such an exciting and scary time for me, but I have really found a passion.
I hope if any of you readers are nervous to jump into applique you will email me and let me give you the confidence for applique.

I have not had the chance to test designs from all of my favorite sites but I will say they are very talented digitizers. I had the opportunity to meet many of them face-to-face at the Everything Applique Conference.
Being able to meet them made me love their work even more!

Applique Cafe

I also love but haven't sampled...
Planet Applique (thanks to Alicia for introducing me)
and I am in love with these hooded towel sets from Applique Corner.

What are some things you have DIY'ed lately?

Ever have questions or want to request a recipe or tutorial, comment or email me at You can also visit Deep South Sweets on Facebook or follow me on Pinterest!

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