Crock Pot Pickle Pork and the Origin of my Name

Crock Pot Pickle Pork from Kelli's Kitchen

Crock Pot Pickle Pork from Kelli’s Kitchen

I received a comment on my last post that reminded me of how I found out the origin of my name. I’ve always liked it except for a few days during elementary school – and wouldn’t trade it for anything. My cousin Debbie reads this blog and I hope she will get a kick out of it.

In September of 1961, Mother Kalamity married my biological dad (Debbie’s uncle). I have always called him Buddy. When a parent dies before you are a year old and you are willingly adopted by your dad, things are sometimes dicey in the “what do I call him” department. So, as I said, they were married in September of 1961, I was born in October of 1962 and buddy passed away in April of 1963. Mother, a 23-year-old bride married Buddy who was divorced and had an 18-year-old daughter. My half-sister’s name is Pat. I have had limited contact with her over the years most likely because in the 60’s second wives and daughters of about the same age were not the norm nor were they acceptable in some social circles. I’m sure I was probably an embarrassment to Pat and her mother but I do not have ill feelings towards her because I may have felt the same way if my dad married someone my age and then she got pregnant right away. Pat asked me to be the flower girl at her wedding; yep that’s me at the First Baptist Church on her wedding day. At the reception I stuffed myself with white wedding cake and yellow frosting roses……that’s about all I remember. I still love white cake with big ‘ol frosting roses (the soft kind) preferably yellow.

kelli - flowergirl pat's wedding

After mom and dad got married when I was 3, mother felt that I should have my IQ tested – who knows why but my dad seldom refused her anything so I took this test. The only part of the test I remember was that the very cold room smelled like glue and paint. At some point, the results came and then there was a flurry of conversation between mother and dad —well really mother and anyone who came within 200 miles of our home about where I should be placed in school. It was decided that I HAD to go to private school because the state of public schools was “just scandalous” in the 60’s – uh, yeah right.

The day came and I was carpooled off to school knowing no one else except my across the street neighbor Esther. She and I were going to be in the same class, if we had been segregated by classes. Mother put me in a plaid school dress with a huge white collar and black Mary Janes. Dresses were a must at Catholic school but at least there were no uniforms. When I got there, I expected to see something like the nuns from Sound of Music. Instead I saw slender, good looking; make up wearing hip nuns donning short shag haircuts instead of habits. Their order (I found out as an adult) was granted money from the diocese to use in a multi-year demonstration project showing a new and different way children should learn. If I told you what my “classrooms” were like, what we sat in, how we spent entire afternoons sculpting while listening to classical music or great speeches translated by nuns, and my first proposal with contract signing was in 2nd grade, you probably would not believe it in this A-B-C driven world. With the exception of “New Math” which was a dismal failure all across the US, this way of learning was pretty darn stellar and Sr. Rebecca Einhorn was right. To say I had a non-traditional early childhood education would be an understatement. One day I will tell you about it.

Kelli and Mrs. Beasley
Me in the first grade but this is not my school pix – No one takes Mrs. Beasley to school!

About a month into the school year, I came home and had the following conversation with dad. I remember it like it earlier this morning.

“Everyone’s daddy is coming to school on Friday, can you come too?”

“Yes, I suppose I can get off work – what time?”

“I don’t know, I’ll have to check with Sr. Mary Edward but I think it is in the afternoon and everyone is so excited!”

“I guess Phil (Esther’s dad) will be there.”


“Why not? That’s Esther’s daddy.”

“No, they all have the same daddy – daddy shorts. One other thing: What is my Saint’s name?”

“Your Saint’s name? You don’t have one.”

“Oh dad – sure I do! Everyone does and daddy shorts is coming to talk to us all about the confoundedness of it.” (“Confound it!” was a phrase my Nana used when really mad)

“No I’m sorry but you don’t have a saint’s name”

“Well who was I named after then?”

“Your mom told me you were named after that radio station in Tulsa that looks like a space ship.”

“I was named after a space ship?”

“No, you were named after KELI radio station and the building LOOKS like a space ship. What time will your mother be home from work?”

KELI Radio Station

I believe that’s when the bawling and squalling began. Mother, a career woman, finally arrived home and clarified these things:

1 Father Schwartz, not daddy shorts, would be coming to the first grade class Friday afternoon and he was NOT everyone’s father except mine. (sounded the same to me)

2 He was coming to talk about confirmation, not confoundedness. (sounded the same to me)

3 Only Catholics have Saint’s names and we are not Catholic. (What’s the difference?)

4 Yes, I was really named after a radio station in Tulsa. (My life is ruined). I was named in order to somehow build a bridge between Mother and Pat………really? There were only five years difference in their ages – they didn’t need a bridge, they just needed a Coca Cola party during American Bandstand and they would be bonded for life! But me, I had to bear this shame forever!

When we got to school Friday, we all had to stand one at a time and tell who we were named after and what our saint’s name was. I hung my head trying to hide behind the bean bag chairs so I wouldn’t be called on and yet I was. Did Sr. Mary Edward not know I was a non-Catholic? Why would she ask me such a thing? Fighting back tears I stood up and told them I was named after KELI radio station. The statement hung in the air for what seemed like hours until a boy said, “COOL, I wish I was named after a radio station” and everyone agreed. From that day on I was happy I had such a unique name story. Peer pressure and group acceptance was important in 1st grade.

I got my chance to change the name when I was legally adopted by my dad (August 23rd). Our attorney, mom, dad and I went into the judge’s chambers listening to the screams outside of two young women who stole a car and escaped from Helena – a reform school – but were being sent back. Right before he signed them – which by the way he said was the best thing he had done all day – he asked if there was anything else I wanted to change like my first or middle name, where I was born, or the date. He said I could be born in Paris, France if I wanted and my name could be Goldie (Goldie Hawn) or Tuesday (Tuesday Weld) if I wanted. While my parents knitted their eyebrows together in concern at calling me Goldie or Tuesday for the rest of my life I contemplated changing it but I thought my radio station story was better than being named after a metal or a day of the week so I kept it, just changing – rather adding my last name.

That’s the story of how I was named. A few years ago Mr. Picky Eater and I were at the flea market when in a big old pile of crap, I spied a framed picture of the space ship-looking radio station with the call letters spelled out on the glass. I grabbed it and thought I could get it for a buck or two. Nope – $30. $30???? What the heck?

Apparently a man named Les Garland started out at KELI and eventually was the co-founder of both MTV and VH-1. Well that makes about as much sense as paying $30 for a picture of the chair that the President sat in when he was in college. Still – I paid it. It hangs in our house now and every time I see it, it gives me a little chuckle.

I suppose it is time for me to get to the recipe and stop rambling…..I found this over at Juanita’s Cocina and it is a keeper. Very simple slow cooker recipe that has so many different uses, you will make it again and again. I made mine a little different but go on over and check that one out too – it’s great!


Crock Pot Pickle Pork from Kelli's Kitchen

Crock Pot Pickle Pork from Kelli’s Kitchen

Pork butt or shoulder (mine was 8.75 lbs)
Four cloves of garlic and 4 shallots peeled and minced.
One bottle of any kind of beer or 12 ounces of water.
One 12 – 16 ounce jar of hamburger dill pickles, yes all of it.


Place the pork butt into the slow cooker, pour in the beer/water and then all the pickles sprinkling the garlic and shallots on top.

Crock Pot Pickle Pork from Kelli's Kitchen

Crock Pot Pickle Pork from Kelli’s Kitchen

Cook on high for 8 hours or low for 10 hours. Shred and serve.

These pictures depict the pulled beef and “porkles” as Juanita calls them on a sandwich but we put up one pound packages in the freezer. They will be easy to take out of the freezer and add homemade bar-b-q sauce, or sloppy Joe sauce. We can make enchiladas as well, but the one I’m looking forward to the most are my steamed pork and potato burritos. Those will be fantastic!

Crock Pot Pickle Pork from Kelli's Kitchen

Crock Pot Pickle Pork from Kelli’s Kitchen

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  1. Patty says

    I just started following your blog (yesterday) and LOVE it! Can you post a picture of the of the picture? I’m curious what it looks like. :)

    • says

      Hi Patty! So glad you joined us – Let me see if I can get a picture of it – but in the meantime, down where my dad and I are having our little conversation and he tells me I”m named after KELI radio station? Click on the KELI and scroll down just a bit – there it is! Let me see if I can get a pix!

  2. says

    Great story :) I love how your life was ruined all because of where you got your name. Of course, you could always try being named after a car and not even have a decent story for it at all. ~ Caprice 😉

  3. says

    You are all kinds of awesome! I am sitting here, sipping my first cup of coffee this morning, grinning like a baby with a buttered biscuit in each hand. I can just imagine your horror when your dad told you how you got your name. And the collective inhale of the room when you told the story to your class. Thank God for the boy who said, “Cool!” He probably changed your life. :)

    Meanwhile, I am pouring myself a second cup and waiting for the grocery store to open. Evidently I need a pork roast and a jar of pickles. Oh, yeah!

    • says

      Stacy – you will love that pickle pork and I’m telling you the porkles? They are fantastic! I fried up potato chunks last night and put with the pork and some cheese rolling in burrito tortillas and then rolled them in foil and steamed them – just like the ones on the street in Texas and Oklahoma……..they rock too!

  4. pamasaurus says

    I never would’ve thought about putting pickles in the crock pot. Now I have to try this! YUM!!

    Your story is awesome. I would love to be named after a radio station. Instead, I’m named after an aunt who I’ve never met.

  5. says

    Hey, Keli. What a great story. I’m glad I inspired you. LOL. Jen’s recipes are always fabulous. You can also do the same technique with beef and peperoncini peppers. Really enjoyed your post. (My sis had a Mrs. Beasley doll. I was jealous.)

  6. says

    What a hoot! I never knew the origin of your name, either. I named my second daughter after Jenny in the movie Love Story. No one would believe me since my husband has an aunt named Jennie, but it’s the truth. To be honest, I’m not even sure she knows that! Kelli, I love your blog, stories and recipes! Have a wonderful day!

  7. says

    I swear, from now on I’m going to grab a cup of tea before sitting down to one of your posts. It’s like reading a good book. :) For the record, my parents argued about what to name me and my mother lost. (I don’t know how it’s possible for a woman who carried me and gave birth to me to lose that argument…) She wanted to name me Ariel (after the sprite in the Shakespeare play) and my father wanted to name me after the 50’s Swedish bombshell, Anita Eckberg. (It was the 60’s and I’m assuming they were both stoned!) So, I am named for a Swedish beauty and except for the face, figure and blond hair, I look just like her! :)

    • says

      Oh Anita! You are mysterious and beautiful looking – ha, maybe not Swedish but still! I don’t know how your mom lost the argument either. Although, I guess I DO know – I wanted to name her Stevie (Nicks) – okay, I was a teenager so I can’t be held responsible. Her father wanted to name her after the red haired model on the Price is Right – you can see who won! :)

  8. says

    Kelli, I really love that you shared this unique story with us! after a radio station WOW! :-) your name is beautiful!
    living almost all of my life in a ‘French environnement’ it was difficult for me to wear my name, no could pronounce it and they made fun of it! ah! :-) & of course, I’m loving that sandwich, looks delicious! :-)

    • says

      Really? Ingrid is difficult for a French-speaking person to say? Yes, I know it is German and/Spanish but there are so many Ingrid’s here it seems almost American! :) Thank you for your compliments!

  9. Food Stories says

    O.M.G. – This story is amazing and I was glued to my computer the whole time – I love that you were named after a radio station and that you even have a picture of it. My parents weren’t that creative … I got my mom’s first name and my dad’s middle name … My sister got the opposite, my dad’s first name and my mom’s middle name.

    • says

      Thanks CJ! You know, I have known several families who did the mom – first name, dad- middle and vice versa on the second child’s name! I love your name – and that you use initials! :)

      • Food Stories says

        Thank you – My family always called me “shorty” when I was a kid but when I wasn’t so short anymore it progressed to initials.

  10. says

    That’s a great story! I lived in Tulsa for 4 years and I guess I don’t remember KELI. And I think it’s a fun way to get your name! Thanks for sharing your story and recipe at All Things Pretty!

    • says

      KELI was an AM radio station – when I was a teenager I listened to KELI and KAKC all the time – Then the FM channels came – I’m old, I know. Thanks for much for dropping by and reading the posts! I love your party AND your blog. I don’t know if you get notification of when I answer but do you know about Krylon’s contest? I’ve entered and it seems like it’s a pretty good place to post your projects. Let me know!

  11. Val in MN says

    That story put a HUGE smile on my face, around all the giggling I was doing! My goodness! I pinned this page TWICE! Once for the recipe and again for the story! Gotta try that pork!

  12. says

    I loved your story. One question about the recipe: Do you add both the pickles and the juice? That’s what it sounds like, but I want to be sure.

    • Kelli says

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the story! Yep, just open the jar and pour it all in – it will be great and it won’t taste Pickle-eee. Thanks for dropping by and please come back again – anytime!

  13. Jo-Anne says

    Love the wonderful name legacy, great story :) Your recipe is now printing with my thanks. Last fall I used an online recipe to put up bread & butter pickles… If I used those would you get a similar taste experience? I don’t want to bugger up an already tried & true great recipe.

    • Kelli says

      Hi Jo-Anne – it may be just a bit sweeter with the bread and butter pickles! I’m pleased you liked the story and hope you love the pork – enjoy!

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