Tag Archives: chili

Chili Weekend

Hey everyone! I’m back! I just woke up from my Sunday afternoon catnap and realized I hadn’t written since Wednesday. Oops! But all is well. Busy lives just never seem to get less busy. 🙂

The end of my week was filled with work and Jazzercise. I was just anxious for the weekend to arrive! Nick and I had plans to attend the Sertoma Chili Cookoff at the Expo center in downtown Springfield on Saturday afternoon! I couldn’t wait for lots of chili in my tummy!

I woke up bright and early on Saturday morning to get in my last long run before the marathon next weekend. 10 miles flew by, and I was headed off to sub a 9:30 Jazzercise class before I knew it. I taught to a full room of 13 ladies with tons of energy, and it felt great! Maybe the 50 degree temps and sunshine had something to do with it?

Anyways, between the run and class I had carved a nice big calorie deficit just waiting to be filled with chili. After a shower, Nick and I headed downtown to let the chili tasting begin!


Mmmm, chili. 🙂 We tasted about 10 different kinds before Nick threw in the towel. I had room for a few more bites! It was a crazy environment though. And we didn’t hang out too much longer.

People everywhere!! We could barely make it from one side of the expo center to the other because of the Huge crowd. It was intense. But we still had a great time seeing friends and sampling chili from local restaurants and businesses. My favorite was from Dublin’s Pass – a local Irish pub. They didn’t win, but I definitely went back for several extra samples from their booth!

Overall, it was a good time! The only down side? Dealing with chili overload today. Our stomachs were not happy with us this morning!

After the cookoff, we went by Ultramax (a local running store) to grab some last minute supplies for next weekend. By the time we were done shopping, we were ready for some real food! It was 4 pm and I hadn’t had a real meal yet for the day. So we stopped by a fresh and healthy Asian restaurant called Koriya. I got the crispy shrimp bowl in the picture and it was delish!

It was full of rice, veggies, and tempura shrimp. I loved it! This restaurant is on the opposite side of town from us, so I’m not sure how often we’ll go back. But I think it’s worth the trip. They have an awesome menu with lots of healthy options!

Tonight I’m just trying to get a rough list together of everything I want to pack for next weekend. The Little Rock marathon is one week from today! By this time in the evening, we should be arriving home. 🙂 I’m so excited!!!!

Have a great evening everyone. Enjoy the last few hours of your weekend, and I’ll talk to you later!


Snow and Caffeine

Happy Monday! I hope you all had great weekends and were ready for the awesome Monday morning commute today in the mini-blizzard that mother nature decided to drop on us…sighhhhh. Luckily, the snow didn’t mess up my day in anyway, so I’m not that angry about it. I still made it to Jazzercise this morning at 5:30 (after some slipping and sliding). And I had one brave student come workout with me!

IMG_3264I stood inside the door of the center watching it pour snow outside. I was pretty sure no one was going to come, so when that one brave soul pulled into the parking lot, I was ecstatic.

We had a quick and fun class followed by me frantically driving home to get ready for work and on the road before the mad rush happened during the bad weather. I beat most of the traffic and made it to work in one piece despite the 1.5 inches of snow on the road. Luckily, the sun also decided to come out mid-morning so the roads were clear and dry for my trip home for lunch. So it’s been a good snow day. Weird, right? I haven’t really had a good snow day all winter. Hopefully this is a sign that winter is on it’s way out soon!

Since I was rushing around to beat morning rush hour, I didn’t have time for my normal coffee at home while I was getting ready. So once I got to work I downed my mug of coffee (holds about 3.5 cups) and was needing more to fight off a small headache. I borrowed some Dunkin Donuts original blend and used the fancy Keurig machine in our breakroom. That was some of the strongest and most delicious coffee I’ve had in a long time!

0088133400046_500X500So I had about 7 whole cups of coffee before 11 a.m. I was basically vibrating from all the caffeine. I couldn’t sit still, and I was so happy and optimistic that my coworkers were ready to kill me. It was a good morning to say the least, but now I’m coming down hard. Nap time, anyone?!


Lunch was quick and easy today since I made my awesome chili in the Crockpot yesterday. Leftover chili on a snow day was the perfect comfort food.

IMG_3265But now my leftovers are almost gone. I need to make a bigger batch next time!

And now I’m pondering Valentine’s Day since it’s this Friday. I’m already craving chocolate like the cocoa bean is going extinct. It’s bad. Nick and I almost through an entire bag of mini Reese’s Peanut Butter hearts yesterday. That along with the donuts was just about more sugar than I should need in a whole week.

IMG_3266So maybe I’ll luck out and just get flowers. Flowers are pretty and smell good and they don’t cause tons of guilt from eating too many of them. 🙂 I want chocolate, but I really need flowers instead. HA! And now for a cute picture.

Valentine-Day-MemesAhhhhhh!! Puggy!! I love this for so many reasons. If Nick got me a pug for Valentine’s Day, I would forget all about the chocolate. Maybe….

Looking ahead through the week, I’m teaching a lot of Jazzercise and have a normal running schedule. I’m not in true taper mode yet for the Little Rock race, so I’ll still have my normal runs on Wednesday and Thursday mornings. Can you believe I’m 20 days out from my first marathon??? I can’t even wrap my head around that one right now.

I’m subbing Jazzercise tonight, so it’s going to be a busy evening. I hope you guys have a great one!

Spicy Crockpot Chili Recipe

Happy Tuesday to ya! It’s another lovely Fall day here in Springfield, so in honor of the cooler temps and changing leaves, I have a new Crockpot Recipe to share!

chilispicySpicy, Meaty Crockpot Chili Recipe



  • 1.5 lbs ground beef (or turkey!)
  • 2 cans of Chili Beans
  • 2 cans of diced tomatoes in sauce for chili – spicier the better!
  • 1 can of large sliced stewed tomatoes, Mexican style
  • 1 additional can of tomato sauce (if needed)
  • 1/2 of a red onion, diced
  • 2 tsps chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp of cumin
  • 1/2 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 tsp minced onions
  • Mexican hot sauce to taste
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Begin by browning the ground beef in a large skillet. Season with the garlic salt and drain well.

photo(85)Once your meat is well drained, put it into your Crockpot or slow-cooker. On top of the meat add the cans of beans, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, stewed tomatoes, and diced red onion. Stir well to combine and add a little water if the mix seems too thick for your liking.

photo(84)This particular batch ended up being a little too soupy, but it was still tasty! Next, add your seasonings – the chili powder, cumin, and minced onions. Stir this well to combine.

photo(81)Now this is where your taste-tester needs to step in. If you want it to be spicy (like Nick does!), you can add some hot sauce, extra salt & pepper, or even some crushed red pepper here. Give it a taste and doctor it up how you like!

photo(83)Now put your Crockpot on the Low setting and cover it.

photo(80)Let the chili cook on low for around 5-6 hours. Be sure to keep the lid on the whole time! I only opened it to stir about 2 times to make sure it wasn’t sticking to the bottom. By the time my chili had been cooking 6 hours, it was boiling and ready for dinner.

photo(76)This was our Sunday night dinner this week, and Nick loved it! I loved it too, but it really made my nose run. I think it was my spiciest yet! So if you are whimpy like I am, add lots of crackers to help tone it down a bit. 🙂

photo(74)YUM!! I’m still eating on this stuff for my lunches this week. It’s an awesome treat in the middle of my day. I’ve also been adding a spoonful of cottage cheese into my chili to make it a little creamy and cool it down a little. You should definitely give it a try.

I hope you all have time to break out your Crockpot soon. It’s that time of year where the cozy smell of chili coming from your kitchen NEEDS to happen. Haha, at least I think so.

Hope you’re having a great Tuesday! Get out there and enjoy this lovely sweater weather!