Weekend & Chili Recipe

I am just now getting caught up on everything from being out of town and having such a busy week last week. 
We literally had something every single day and night. We got back in town from Knoxville and in bed around 1am, then I had to start babysitting 4 kids at 7:30 Monday morning because the kids had an inservice day. It poured down raining all day, so we were pretty much stuck inside. Then I had to take Polly to gymnastics at 5. My babysitting day started at 7 on Tuesday morning. That afternoon Polly had dance at 4 and Parker had football at 5:30. Babysitting started at 7am again on Wednesday and Thursday. We had women's Bible study Wednesday night. After my morning babysitting shift on Thursday I spent 3 hours making gumbo for our couple's Bible study group in the annual Taste of Claxton, which was Thursday night at 6. I was up early again on Friday because a man came to assess the leak in our living room and our broken dryer. Then I ran errands in Statesboro most of the afternoon. I just could not get caught up on anything. And with a broken dryer you can imagine our laundry situation. I am so thankful the Lord has provided me with work right now as we really need any extra income we can get. Plus, I just treasure the relationships I'm building with these precious little ones.
The ladies and our Halloween themed table...we served delicious Marshmallow Fudge Brownies made by Jessica, on the far left.
Our husbands with their hunting/camouflage themed table, who served gumbo over rice, made by yours truly.
A close up of our brownies.
Polly and me.
Neither of our teams won, but our food was delicious anyway.
This week has calmed down a little and for that I am thankful. 
I have also had enough work to keep me busy this week, too, and I am thankful for that as well.
Brandon was on call this weekend, so we were stuck here.
Can you believe he didn't have one single call?! So frustrating to be stuck somewhere and not reap any benefits whatsoever. If he doesn't get called in, he doesn't get paid.
I worked over the weekend, though.
I kept Parker and Polly Saturday, overnight, and half the day on Sunday while their Mama was out of town.
We did have the best time together. The kids were amazing-on their best behavior.
Saturday morning Parker had two football games, so we spent the first half of the day at the ball field.
Even though his team lost both games, he still managed to find his good attitude for the rest of the weekend.
Saturday afternoon Polly and I went to a little fall festival where she got her face painted.
She also got to jump in one of those bouncy things.
After the festival these three went for a short swim while I cooked supper.
We watched a lot of football...and we played a lot of football out in the yard, too.
I made chili...
and Frito pie.
For dessert I made Fudge, Pumpkin, Cream Cheese brownies. They were so good!
 I'll share my recipes with y'all: 

1 1/2 lbs. ground chuck
1-12 oz. pkg. reduced fat ground sausage
5 1/2 cups fresh diced tomatoes seasoned with garlic, oregano & basil OR
3-14.5 oz. cans diced Italian style tomatoes
2-16 oz. cans pinto beans   ( I used reduced sodium on all beans)
2-16 oz. cans kidney beans
2-16 oz. cans black beans     
1 qt. fresh tomato juice (substitute V8 juice or tomato soup if you don't have any)
1/2 large bottle of reduced sodium V8 juice
2 TBS Tony Chacheres Cajun seasoning
3 TBS chili powder
2-3 TBS Tabasco
salt & pepper
In a large soup pot (like the biggest one you have), brown ground chuck and ground sausage with salt and pepper. Once meat is mostly cooked, add tomatoes, beans, and juices. Stir well. Add seasonings & Tabasco-they don't have to be exact measurements. Adjust them based on your tastes and what you think it needs. Don't be afraid!! Stir well again. Bring to a boil and boil 10 min., stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low and cook 1-3 hrs., stirring occasionally. 
This makes a lot of chili, so you can freeze it in freezer jars or bags. 
I serve it with a spoonful of fat free sour cream and some colby-jack cheese sprinkled on top.
Also some crumbled Fritos on top are good, too.
*I use this chili in my Frito pie recipe*

1-8 oz.  pkg. reduced fat or fat free cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1-2 cups fresh cooked chili
1 1/2 cups shredded colby jack cheese
In a glass pie dish or an 8x8" glass baking dish, spread softened cream cheese out as evenly as possible in the bottom of the dish. Top with chili, trying not to get too much juice or liquid on the cream cheese. Top with shredded cheese. Bake at 350 10-15 min. or until cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve with Fritos or Tostitos.

I was in a hurry, so I used a box brownie mix...
I box Duncan Hines Ultimate Fudge Brownie mix-make as directed on the box, but before you bake it add 4 oz. softened cream cheese and 1/2 cup pumpkin (not pie filling). Take a butter knife and swirl the pumpkin and cream cheese throughout the brownie mix so that you can still see their pretty colors. Bake as directed. 


  1. Oh, I would love to have a pool!!
    Thanks for the recipes - I'll be trying them out soon!

  2. How much do I LOVE that pic of the dog mid-jump into the pool, while your husband seems to be telling the other dog to stay. So cute! :)

  3. Cherish, you always take the best, most warm and cuddly pictures! What kind of camera do you use? I am needing a new one but I am clueless! :)

    Hope you get some time to slow down and relax! :)

  4. Very cute pictures! and thanks for the chili recipe. I am getting married next year and have started to put a book together of recipes and this is definitely going in it!


  5. You guys have been busy! I love the table themes. Very cute! The chili sounds good!

  6. Those brownies look and sound delicious! It sounds like y'all have been so busy! Polly is absolutely precious, though--I bet y'all have so much fun together!

  7. I am not a huge chili person, but I do love brownies! I am going to make these this weekend. Thanks so much! :)

  8. Everyone looks so cute, and the food looks delicious!

  9. Great pictures! You sure have been busy!

  10. oh my goodness! you really have been busy!! I hope things slow down a little for you. The kids you babysit are absolutely precious!

  11. Oh hunny sounds like you & Brandon both have been busy bees since being back from Knox! I loved all those sweet pictures... All that delish food is making me hungry now & wanting some..Have a good weekend...

  12. thank you for the recipes.I will try the pumpkin-brownies.never heart something like that.In germany we don t know many pumpkin recipes. we only eat soup made of pumpkin !
    and you can still go swimming in a pool ? we have so cold weather,even the cars have an icing in the morning !


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