Today I learnt how to stop using views for every little listing of entities while staying away from hacking SQL queries manually.
I'm a bit ashamed I haven't had a look at the infamous EntityFieldQuery class this far.
Here's my example that builds and inserts a FlexSlider slideshow within my
page.tpl.php only for the front page.
In my case FlexSlider is installed and registered as a Library using Libraries and the FlexSlider module (making it possible to load the necessary assets using