Monday, October 29, 2012

Cindy's Chili

Here it is, my famous chili recipe!!!

3 lbs ground beef (or turkey or chicken)
2 lg onions, chopped
2 lg green bell peppers, chopped
2 sm cans tomato sauce
2 cans kidney beans
1 28 oz can diced tomatoes
1 qt tomato juice
3 T chili powder
1- 1 1/2 T salt
1/4 c brown sugar
3 T white sugar
1 t black pepper

Brown meat, onions, and peppers together. Add other ingredients and simmer for 1-1 1/2 hours on low heat. Serve with sour cream, shredded cheddar, and jalapenos!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012


Homemade Pumpkin French Toast—YUM!

Here's what we're up to right now:

Singing all kinds of silly Halloween songs with Branner and taking him on almost nightly walks to see the "graveyard" one of our neighbors has set-up for the occasion. He loves it and the huge spiders our next door neighbors have on their house!

Packing and getting our ducks in a row for Blake and Lindsay's wedding weekend! 

Looking forward to said wedding SO MUCH! Can't wait to celebrate Blake and Linds and to see so many of our most favorite people in the world in one place!

Constantly burning my last Leaves (they're sold out in my store—boo!) and Cider Lane candles from Bath & Body Works. I have a slight obsession with candles.

Still coming down off the high of a very relaxing, wonderful getaway to Asheville Barry and I enjoyed last week for a CMCU board retreat. While he had work to do during the day,  I made myself more than comfortable at the Grove Park's Spa for two days. A. MA. ZING.

Being a little disappointed in what I've seen so far of the final season of Gossip Girl. I know, I know, it's a silly show to watch! But, I've been watching from the beginning, and I can't seem to stop myself.

Looking forward to the return of Top Chef, Million Dollar Decorators, and RHOA on Bravo!

Trying to rest some; this month has left all of us a little tired.

Getting excited about Halloween! Branner loved trick-or-treating last year, so I'm sure he'll have a blast this year! We're going with a big group of friends, so it should be a lot of fun!

Trying not to eat tons of the three huge bags of Halloween candy that we bought to give out. 

Enjoying all things pumpkin flavored when we get the chance: french toast, muffins, bread, lattes, oatmeal, etc., etc.

Preparing for our Christmas Card photo shoot next week. 

Waiting not so patiently for this election to be over!!!

What's currently going on at your house?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

CrockPot Chicken Noodle Soup

Due to the craziness that has been our October, I haven't had much time to post here. Once things die down next week, I'll be back! If you read my blog last Fall, you know I like to do "Souper Sundays," and once we're back in town after the big wedding this weekend, I plan to get back to that! I'm making this tomorrow night, and I can't wait!

CrockPot Chicken Noodle Soup

5 c chicken broth
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 c onion, finely chopped
1/2 c celery, finely chopped
1/2 c carrots, finely chopped
1/2 c green onions, finely chopped
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
salt and pepper to taste
1 1/2 c egg noodles
2 c cooked chicken, chopped

Add everything but chicken and noodles to your CrockPot. Cook on low for 5-6 hours. The last hour, turn on high, and add chicken and noodles. Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Hall Family Farm

I've already told y'all how busy this month is for us. Since the weekends between now and Halloween are filled, we went to pick out pumpkins at Hall Family Farm on Saturday evening. It was close to home, just the right size for B, and had plenty to keep him entertained. He loved picking out his pumpkin, "driving" tractors, playing in the sandbox, and checking out their huge spider! We will definitely be going back during strawberry season as well! 

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Baked Spaghetti

When I got married, my mom's friends, the Keeno Girls, started an amazing tradition. They started making all of the Keeno brides monogrammed recipe binders filled with personalized recipe cards of their favorite and most special recipes. It is one of my most cherished possessions, and also a go-to for yummy, staple recipes at our house. So, when I signed up to take a sweet friend dinner since she just had a precious little boy, I knew I'd be using a Keeno recipe. This is one of my favorites!!!

Baked Spaghetti

12 oz cooked spaghetti
1/2 c butter
2 c sour cream
1 c grated parmesan cheese
3 eggs—well beaten
1 1/2 lbs ground beef (I use turkey)
1 c chopped onion
1 c chopped green pepper
8 oz mozzarella cheese
2 15 oz cans of tomato sauce
2 6 oz cans of tomato paste
2 T sugar
1/3 c water
Minced garlic, basil, parsley, and oregano to taste.

To make sauce: Cook beef, onion, and pepper. Drain well. Stir in tomato paste and sauce, sugar, and water along with seasonings. Heat well.

Stir butter, parmesan cheese, and eggs into chopped cooked spaghetti. Knive to chop. Form into a crust and cover the bottom of a greased 9x13 pan. Spread sour cream on top of spaghetti crust. Top with sauce. Cover with mozzarella cheese. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. Can be frozen!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Calm Before the Storm

This week, there's not much going on around our house. B's got school (complete with a puppet performance today, which he loved), I've got some cleaning/organizing/working/exercising to do along with a little volunteering. Other than a haircut/color and a trip to the park, that's all that's on the schedule this week. The weekend's not crazy busy, either. It's nice to have a week/weekend without much going on, because starting next week, things are about to get cray around here!

Next week starts the madness that will be our October: taking dinner to friends who just had a precious baby boy, meetings, Liquor Library, a baby shower for my college BFF, a trip to Asheville for Barry and I, Christmas card/family pictures, a birthday celebration for a sweet girlfriend, the Halloween Hullaballoo at our church, then the big wedding weekend will be upon us, and after that is Halloween! WHEW! This month is really going to fly by.

I think we'd all three better rest up and dot some i's and cross some t's this weekend! I'm so glad I already got B's costume! Now, I just need to finish decorating for Fall...

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Spoiled Rotten Dog

Apparently, Bailey thinks he's human. Maybe we should get him his own pillow.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Spicy Beef (or Turkey) and Vegetable Soup


This is a Fall/Winter staple at our house! It's reposted from my old recipe blog. I highly recommend trying it!

1 lb ground beef (I am using ground turkey this time)
4 stalks celery, sliced
2 cloves crushed garlic
1 medium onion, chopped
1 26 oz jar spaghetti sauce
1 can beef broth, undiluted
2 c water
1 t sugar
1 t salt
1/2 t ground black pepper
16 oz frozen mixed vegetables
1 10 oz can diced tomatoes and green chilies (like Rotel)

Cook ground beef, celery, garlic and onion in a Dutch oven over medium heat until meat is crumbled and no longer pink. Drain. Stir in spaghetti sauce, beef broth, water, sugar, salt and pepper into the beef mixture; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add mixed vegetables and diced tomatoes and chilies; return to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for another 15 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Stir occasionally. Great served with sharp cheddar and garlic bread!