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{Autumn} Obsessions

For my 1999th post—here on the beloved-and-not-yet-dead-so-don’t-you-dare-count-it-out blog—I am going to take the time to talk about this autumn’s Mishi Obsessions.
1.)  Leaves on the Ground
I don’t care if they are wet, dry, crumbled, big, small, yellow, red, or orange, in a big pile or scattered about; fallen leaves beg [me] for a picture to be taken.  The more texture the better, too.
George Eliot said it best, “Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.”
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2.) Ethnic Foods in my Belly
I had Cuban for the first time ever, the other day, and despite the inappropriate touching of the rock-climbing waitress, on the part of our almost six year old son, the experience was solid (like a rock).   See what I did there?  Rock-climbing waitress and solid like a rock?  Yeah, I’m totally hilarious like that, but I digress.  Ahem.
My other favorite, lately, is Thai.  Holy Moly, give me a big bowl of Green Curry with that perfectly cooked Jasmine rice, and I will do anything for you.  Except that.  Yes, that!  Except for you, Michael.  I’d totally do that for you.   I really should digress, again.  Ahem.
cuban
greencurry
Honorable mentions go out to my new favorite dish, Burrito al Carbon, at Fajitas, and the Hot & Sour soup from the Chinese takey-outy place.

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3.)Boots on my Foots
My last and current obsession is BOOTS.  I have been pining for a pair cowboy boots for a while now.  I need to just go ahead, bite the bullet, and order them.  But, I’m waiting to see Santa brings them (or I’m waiting to see if “Santa” is going to bring them!)  For now I have these boots.  I wore them when I shot the wedding of one of my GCA coworkers this past weekend.  That’s when I decided:  I. Need. MORE. Boots.  I need a pair of short, brown leather boots  and a pair of knit top ankle boots and a pair of Uggs (or Fuggs, because I really don’t care if they are actually the name brand, but I would totally prefer it) and while I’m at it I definitely think two pairs of cowboy boots are better than one and I choose THESE!  Because, duh, they are AWESOME!

 

 

 

 

 

 

{Accessorizing} Your Photo Shoot

There are a few interesting things on the horizon for Mishelle Lane Photography.  A week from today I will be shooting the wedding of one of my co-workers, and I have a few families interested in portraiture.   I can’t wait!  Also, a great fellow photographer friend and I have decided to get our families together and each of us is going to photograph the other family.  I’m excited to see myself through someone lens, other than mine on a tripod, a timer, and a prayer.  Even though. last year, it did work out pretty well.  See?

Recently I was asked to shoot an engagement session for one of the cutest couples ever, Katie & Destin.   We mulled over different ideas for various locations, but we finally ended up in a little historic town, called Tate, not too far from where we live.    Actually, we started out at Dawsonville’s City Hall (which is also the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame, because, that’s how we roll around here.)   I love to shoot there because there are a few backdrops that make me really happy.  I’ve had photo-shoots there with our kids, Zumba babe – Maggie, and Erica & Dusty.    Recently I came full circle with Erica & Dusty by shooting them from engagement to marriage to pending parenthood to first portraits of their adorable baby boy.  I honestly hope to do the same with Katie & Destin!


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Often my clients will ask me what they should wear; I tell them to stay away from too many conflicting patters and offer some suggestions about colors.  Katie was spot on in her choices for their photo shoot.  She went with rich autumn colors and accessorized PERFECTLY!  I loved that she chose to wear an animal print scarf  and beautiful lacy dangling earrings.  When we take our family portraits, later this month, I will definitely go with classic accessories like scarves and jewelery to add depth and contrast.
I also visited Katie & Destin, at their home, and photographed them with a couple other awesome accessories—their beautiful fur-babies, Koda and Pixie.  And, still, Katie chose a beautiful scarf to compliment her outfit.  Seriously, I cannot wait to shoot their wedding on 4/20/12!

 

David our Kindergartener – Growing Up Too Fast

Wasn’t it just yesterday that I was pregnant with Davey, our little “Dude”, waiting for him to join our family?   Wasn’t it just yesterday that he was waking up 3-4 times a night?   Wasn’t it just yesterday that he was wearing those cute little white shoes with the jingle bells on the shoelaces?   Wasn’t it just yesterday that he was still in diapers?   Wasn’t it just yesterday when he fit into those hand-me-down, blue and white, striped overalls that all the boys wore.
Now he’s a full fledged Kindergartener by joining the ranks as one of our Georgia Cyber Academy students and he’s doing fantastically;  he’s flying through the math curriculum and will probably doing 1st grade Math by the second semester.   He sleeps through the night and waits for those nights that Papa is working, out-of-town, so he can keep his pillow warm; he really only wakes up if he’s had a weird dream and needs Mama to kiss the weirdness away.    It’s true when people tell those who are potty-training that the kid won’t go to Kindergarten with diapers; even though I am still beckoned to wipe his booty by his classic call, “Mama, I pooped!”   Now that fall is upon us I have really realized how much he’s grown; all of his pants are almost two inches too short and that makes me really thankful that he’s a Kindergartener at home.   I do not envy those parents who have to buy new wardrobes for their kids at the start of every school year.

All About Pork | Greek Salad with Pork Cutlets

When I told everyone that I was making Greek Salad with Pork (which we call Souvlaki) for dinner, they were all super-ecstatic.

“With Tzatziki, Mama?”  I was asked.

“How could we have it without?” I questioned rhetorically.

It’s definitely one of our family’s favorite comfort foods.   And, it holds a special place in my heart (Michael’s, too), because it was the first meal we had together, way back when, in  1994, at a little Greek Dive one town over from where I was raised.

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This past month has been so fun with all the different recipes I’ve tried.  There’s been Baked Pork Egg Rolls, Braised Pork with Peppers and Onions, Pork Pita Pockets, and today’s Greek Salad with Pork Cutlets!  The common thread that has gone through all of them is that they were healthful and flavorful.  Not to mention they were a hit, through-and-through.   I encourage you to try these recipes or look for other great recipes on Pork Be Inspired.

When I asked everyone which Pork Be Inspired meal was there favorite, they all said that this one was, hands down.   So, if you want to impress your family head over to your local Publix, tomorrow, and pick up a pack of their Pork Sirloin Cutlets (that are on sale right now!)

Earlier today, when I was cashing out, there was a man behind me, in the check-out line, checking out my cutlets.  He asked what I was going to make and when I told him “Pork Souvlaki with Tzatziki Sauce” he responded that he didn’t know what that was but that it sounded fantastic.   And, boy-oh-boy, was he right!

Ingredients

1 1/4 pounds pork loin cutlets, 1/8″ thick
Greek-Style Dressing (buy it or make it, it’s up to you!)
Tzatziki Sauce (make it, you’ll be glad you did!)
8 cups romaine lettuce
Cherry tomatoes, halved
2 1/2 teaspoons Greek seasoning (Look in the spice section of the supermarket for a pre-blended Greek seasoning blend; I used McCormick brand. If unavailable, substitute 2 teaspoons dried oregano leaves, 1/4 teaspoon garlic salt, 1/8 teaspoon onion powder and 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt for the 2 1/2 teaspoons Greek seasoning and 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt.   )
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Nonstick cooking spray
black pepper, freshly ground

Directions

Make Tzatziki Sauce, cover and refrigerate until serving.
Place lettuce, tomatoes, and cucumber slices (if you like) in very large salad bowl.  Gently toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate while preparing pork.
Combine Greek seasoning and salt; sprinkle and rub evenly over pork. Cook the cutlets over medium-high heat in large skillet coated with nonstick cooking for 2-3 minutes or until tender.

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GreekSaladPorkCutlets-3221

Transfer cutlets to cutting board.
To serve, divide lettuce mixture among plates. Arrange 1/4 of pork on each salad. Drizzle 2 tablespoons dressing over each salad. Sprinkle with black pepper, if desired. Serve with Tzatziki and warm, toasty pita.

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A Giveaway For YOU!
Since this is the last week of the  “Good and Good for You Challenge” I’m giving one of my readers some of the same items I’ve been using during the challenge:
  • 8 $5 pork coupons for Publix ($40 worth of free pork!)
  • Water bottle
  • Reusable grocery bag
  • Meat thermometer
  • Pedometer
  • Recipe book
All you have to do is:
Leave a comment on this post, and tell me what you love about pork and what your favorite pork dish is!
For an extra entry:
Share this post on Facebook, and make sure you tag me in your post!

[This post is the last of a series of posts that I have shared over the last four weeks. Please enter the giveaway as a thank you for letting me share my pork recipes with you, and head to your local Publix for some great deals on pork. To keep up with the “Good and Good for You Challenge”, follow @allaboutpork on Twitter, and look out for the #Publix4Pork hashtag. You can also connect with Pork Be Inspired on Facebook. I have partnered with The Motherhood to bring you these awesome recipes, information, and all things pork. As a part of this campaign, I am compensated for my time. All thoughts and opinions remain my own, as always.]

All About Pork | Pork Pita Pockets

I have been loving the whole process of putting together these weekly Pork Be Inspired posts.   Today—after BodyFlow—Olivia, Davey, and I headed out for a shopping excursion.   Before hitting Publix to buy this week’s pork that was on sale, we went to a new restaurant that recently opened, one town over, called Cheddars.  The whole day, from my morning coffee with Michael, on the love-seat, with Pepper in between us, sunshine flooding in through our windows, to this very minute (writing this post up to share), has been thoroughly delightful.   There’s something about those days that are just filled with love, and today was one of them for me.

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This week I decided to make “Heart-y and Healthy” Pork Pita Pockets that were inspired by this recipe.   I wanted to use this week’s special from Publix, Bone-in Pork Loin Roast, for my adaptation of Amelia’s Italian Pork Pockets, but the local Publix that I went to was out of them (obviously because of the awesome sale: $3.39 per pound!)

So, I got another cut that was on special…the bone-in pork loin chops!  I figured it would work super in the recipe that I picked to make for my family.   And, it did!


PorkPitaPockets

Ingredients

4 bone-in pork loin chops
2 bell peppers, each cut into strips, lengthwise
6 mushrooms, cut into slices
1/2 red onion, cut into wedges, separated
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
2 teaspoons red pepper flakes, crushed
8 pita pocket bread halves
Colby-jack cheese slices

Cooking Directions

Heat oven to broil. Coat a large baking pan with cooking spray. Arrange pork chops and vegetables in a single layer on baking pan. In a small bowl, combine vinegar, oil, Italian seasoning, & red pepper flakes. Brush mixture on both sides of pork. Broil 5 to 6 inches from heat for about 5-6  minutes, or until pork has internal temperature on a thermometer reads 145 degrees Fahrenheit, followed by a 3-minute rest time and vegetables are crisp-tender. Remove from oven; divide pork and vegetables among pita pocket breads. Add slices of cheese to each pocket.

PorkPitaPockets

PorkPitaPockets
TIP: Today’s leaner pork can be enjoyed medium rare for optimal enjoyment. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently announced that pork can be safely cooked to 145 degrees Fahrenheit, followed by a three-minute rest time, resulting in juicy and tender pork that’s more delicious than ever. 
PorkPitaPockets

PorkPitaPockets

PorkPitaPockets
There are so many aspects to getting healthy, and eating healthy is half the battle. If you need more motivation please visit Facebook.com/PorkBeInspired, and pledge to eat healthy with pork. By doing that you’ll be entered for a chance to win free pork tenderloin.

[This post is part of a series of posts that I will be sharing over the next four weeks. Please come back to see next week’s delicious and healthy recipe, and head to your local Publix for some great deals on Pork. To keep up with the “Good and Good for You Challenge”, follow @allaboutpork on Twitter, and look out for the #PublixforPork hashtag. You can also connect with Pork Be Inspired on Facebook. I have partnered with The Motherhood to bring you recipes, information, and all things pork. As a part of this campaign, I am compensated for my time. All thoughts and opinions remain my own, as always.]



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