eats: my favorite chili

What wonderful fall weather.  The crisp evenings.  The leaves falling.  The pumpkins.  I love it all!

One of my favorite things about fall is the food.  I can just smell the pumpkin spice lattes, hearty stews, and chili.  Oh, the chili!

This recipe is my absolute FAVORITE chili recipe for two reasons.

one – it’s so simple & easy.

two – it’s yummy and classic.


And, once you read the how-to below & the ingredient list, you will be simply astonished by how easy this is to make.

My Favorite Chili


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 2/3 cup chopped onion
  • 1 t bottled minced garlic
  • 1 1/2 cups hot water
  • 1 T chili powder
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 can seasoned chili beans, undrained
  • 1 can dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 6oz can tomato paste


  1. Cook meat, chopped onion, and garlic in a Dutch oven or large pot over medium-high heat until meat is browned, stirring to crumble.
  2. Once fully cooked and meat is no longer pink, drain in a colander, then return to pan.
  3. Stir in hot water and remaining ingredients.
  4. Cover the pot; Reduce the heat to a simmer.
  5. Simmer for 15 minutes; Stirring occasionally.
  6. Garnish with cheese & serve with honey cornbread (recipe coming next week :).

Serves 3, serving size 2 cups

And here’s the printable recipe (click on the button for a printable PDF file):


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Wedding weekend.

I have been buried in wedding lately and haven’t forgotten about all of you…

The wedding.

My baby brother.

It was beautiful.

It was on a lavender farm at the beach.

The décor was very elegant, vintage barn-esque.

With burlap & vintage lace runners, white linens on hay bales, rooftop twinkling lights, and mason jar beverage glasses.

It was stunning.

Little miss V was the flower girl.

My parents married off the last of us.

Oh, and you see those numbers on the bride’s arm & the mother of the groom’s arm?

Well, they, along with my brother, sister, and several other family members participated in a triathlon that morning.

Yes, they are crazy.

And no, I’m not that crazy ;)


Homemade Playdough 3 Ways

I have been MIA the last couple of days because my little brother just got hitched this weekend!!!  Wahoo – he’s that last sibling to tie the knot.

I don’t have a wrap-up from last week, so I’ll share some more from the wedding tomorrow :)

So, without further ado…I thought I’d throw this post together for this special, momentous day!

Do you know what today is?

A stay-at-home mama blogger HAS to celebrate this day, I mean, poo on Valentines Day, and poo poo on forgetting the anniversary of when I started dating the hubs (yesterday).

Seriously, those are not nearly as important as THIS day ;)

Today (September 16th) is National Play-Doh Day!!!

I had NO idea!

Well, here are a couple of homemade creations to get you started on making your own playdough.

So far I have made these, but, I’ve been experimenting lately with a few more concoctions, so, stay tuned for more to come!!

Chocolate Playdough

Cotton Candy Playdough

Kool-Aid Dyed Playdough

Real Life Wednesday


Laundry will be the death of me.  See that pile (I mean, “piles” – I don’t think that can be defined as just one pile – HA!).  That is my everyday.

Does everyone hate laundry as much as me?  Wait, hate is a strong word.  Die, laundry, die!  Okay I feel better now, did I really just tell the laundry to die?!  Is it gone?  Nope, still there.  Nothing like a little (A LOT of) laundry to evoke such strong feelings ;)

It never seems to end.  I tried doing one load everyday; wash it, dry it, fold and hang it, & put it away.  It worked, for maybe a week.

Is there a laundry solution out there?

I can’t wait until V is 3.  Maybe, just maybe, she can do the loads for me – we’ll call it “whimsical wash” & “fantastic folding” – the fun will never end.  Wait, is 3 too young?  Nah-nonsense.

Seriously, if anyone has ANY magical solutions for doing laundry, I am open to anything, I mean, EVERYTHING!  I can do the washing & the drying, no prob Bob, it’s the FOLDING & the HANGING.  UGH – it takes FOREVER.  Maybe it is all my many years in retail management?  This is why I despise folding laundry – I can’t delegate it to anyone – HA!

That pile, oh that gorgeous pile, well, it’s all clean, it just needs to be snapped at by the magic Mary Poppins fingers & insert itself into all my drawers and closets.  Oh, if I could be Mary Poppins, for just ONE day…ahhhhhh…

Singing in my head now:

In every job that must be done
There is an element of fun
You find the fun and snap!
The job’s a game

Everyday I wake up saying (in my head of course), that this is the day all the laundry will be done & folded, and the hubs will walk in the door and do a happy dance that he finally has clean clothes.

And then real life happens, and I go to bed each day tripping over my pile of clean laundry needing to be folded.

If I was Mary Poppins for a day, I would spread the wealth, I truly would.  I would show up at everyone’s house and snap my fingers…it would be great fun (and I just might even sing about it).

Who would you like to be for a day?

On the horizon.

So, lots of cool things brewing in the mama♥miss world.


My photography business is growing fast – I’ve just set up my first set of mini sessions, so if you live in the Northern VA area, be sure to check it out (specific details are password protected, comment below if you are interested & I can email you the passwords :).

Speaking of photography business – look at this beautiful little 2yo I just photographed last week – isn’t she darling?!


My Etsy shop is starting to come together – slowly, but surely.  It will have handmade printables designed by me, as well as handmade goods made by me.

Here’s a sneak peek of some of the things I will offer in my Etsy shop.


Blog redesign & new venture:

These are exciting new things I am working on & I hope to be bringing you soon!

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July 2018
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