Thursday, January 23, 2014

Positively Famished: My Slow-Cooker Chili Recipe

Why Positively Famished? Well, because so many positive things can come from a great meal with friends and/or family and, hey, we get hungry!!


It's winter and cold out (well, here in Utah it is still freezing outside) and what better time to make a big pot of chili? I used to have a different go-to chili recipe that I posted on my old blog, but I changed it up a bit and am now doing it in my Crock-pot. It's really easy and pretty dang good, if I do say so myself. Here it is:

Trinity's Slow-Cooker Chili   


Ingredients:



  • 1 small onion -or- 1/4 cup dried chopped onion
  • 1 tsp minced garlic (more or less to taste)
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp Chili powder
  • 1 tbsp cumin
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp parsley flakes
  • 1 15 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 cup spicy V8 Juice®
  • 1 cup beef broth or beef stock (I prefer stock; it's thicker and makes it a bit more hearty)
  • 6 cans chili beans


Directions:


  1. In a frying pan, brown ground beef with onions and garlic.
  2. Place in slow-cooker.
  3. Add tomato sauce, beef stock, V8 juice, & Worcestershire sauce. Stir.
  4. Add dry ingredients and stir.
  5. Add cans of chili beans and stir.
  6. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4.
  7. Remove from heat, allow to cool a bit, and enjoy!


Tips:

  • This recipe makes a very big pot of Chili, but it freezes very well if you have a lot of leftovers.
  • Try different bean combinations; red, kidney, or black beans are great options.
  • Top with shredded cheese and sour cream if you like.
  • My hubby likes to top his with salsa.
  • Serve with crackers or corn chips.


Do you have a favorite recipe that you would like to share? Send it to me and I will feature it on our blog. Better yet, consider doing a guest post with us!


I hope you enjoy your Chili and please let me know what you think!


~Trin

Thursday, January 16, 2014

A Sweet Lesson on Patience

I read this story a couple of weeks ago and just KNEW that I had to share it! With all the hustle and bustle and busyness in our lives, always hurrying to get from here to there, I feel that we often times loose site of the important things and forget to slow down and enjoy those little things in life that really matter...


A NYC Taxi driver wrote:

I arrived at the address and honked the horn. After waiting a few minutes, I honked again. Since this was going to be my last ride of my shift, I thought about just driving away, but instead I put the car in park and walked up to the door and knocked. “Just a minute,” answered a frail, elderly voice. I could hear something being dragged across the floor.

After a long pause, the door opened. A small woman in her 90's stood before me. She was wearing a print dress and a pillbox hat with a veil pinned on it, like somebody out of a 1940s movie.

By her side was a small nylon suitcase. The apartment looked as if no one had lived in it for years. All the furniture was covered with sheets. There were no clocks on the walls, no knickknacks or utensils on the counters. In the corner was a cardboard box filled with photos and glassware.

“Would you carry my bag out to the car?” She asked. I took the suitcase to the cab, then returned to assist the woman. She took my arm and we walked slowly toward the curb. She kept thanking me for my kindness. “It's nothing,” I told her...”I just try to treat my passengers the way I would want my mother to be treated.”

“Oh, you're such a good boy.” She said. When we got to the cab, she gave me an address and then asked, “Could you drive through downtown?”..”It's not the shortest way.” I answered quickly. “Oh, I don't mind,” she said. “I'm in no hurry. I'm on my way to a hospice.”

I looked in the rear-view mirror. Her eyes were glistening. “I don't have any family left.” She continued in a soft voice, “The doctor says I don't have very long.”...I quietly reached over and shut off the meter. “What route would you like me to take?” I asked.

For the next two hours, we drove through the city. She showed me the building where she had once worked as an elevator operator. We drove through the neighborhood where she and her husband had lived when they were newlyweds. She had me pull up in front of a furniture warehouse that had once been a ballroom where she had gone dancing as a girl.

Sometimes she would ask me to slow in front of a particular building or corner and would sit, staring into the darkness, saying nothing.

As the first hint of sun was creasing the horizon, she suddenly said, “I'm tired. Let's go now.” We drove in silence to the address she had given me. It was a low building, like a small convalescent home, with a driveway that passed under a portico. Two orderlies came out to the cab as soon as we pulled up. They were solicitous and intent, watching her every move. They must have been expecting her.

I opened the trunk and took the small suitcase to the door. The woman was already seated in a wheelchair. “How much do I owe you?” She asked, reaching into her purse. “Nothing.” I said. “You have to make a living.” She answered. “There are other passengers.” I responded.

Almost without thinking, I bent and gave her a hug. She held onto me tightly. “You gave an old woman a little moment of joy.” She said. “Thank you.” I squeezed her hand and then walked into the dim morning light...Behind me, a door shut. It was the sound of a closing of a life...

I didn't pick up any more passengers that shift. I drove aimlessly, lost in thought. For the rest of the day, I could hardly talk. What if that woman had gotten an angry driver or one who was impatient to end his shift? What if I had refused to take the run or had honked once and then driven away?

On a quick review, I don't think that I have done anything more important in my life.

We're conditioned to think that our lives revolve around great moments. But great moments often catch us unaware—beautifully wrapped in what others may consider a small one.


Beautifully said. I have nothing to add...Please feel free to share this touching story...


~Trin 

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Tips for a Beautiful Life

It's a new year once again and it seems that it's also the time for resolutions and goals, and making positive changes in our lives, so I thought I'd share this list that I found awhile back. I can't really remember where I found it, but I held on to it for whatever reason and I'm glad I did. Now, I'm not saying that you have to do each thing word for word or follow it to a T, or even agree with each and every tip, but I think it is a great guideline for a better year and a healthier/happier life in general. We've all probably seen most of these tips individually, but it's nice to have them in a list. Maybe hang it in our office or somewhere where you'll see it often. It might be a nice pick-me-up when you are having "one of those days" or just need a little reminder...

25 Awesome Tips for a Beautiful Life

1. Take a 10-30 minute walk every day and while you walk, SMILE. It is the ultimate antidepressant.
2. Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day.
3. When you wake up in the morning, pray to ask God's guidance for your purpose today.
4. Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less manufactured/processed foods.
5. Drink green tea and plenty of water. Eat blueberries, broccoli, and almonds.
6. Try to make at least three people smile each day.
7. Don't waste your precious energy on gossip, energy vampires, issues of the past, negative thoughts, or things that you cannot control. Instead, invest your energy in the positive and the present moment. 
8. Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a college kid with a maxed out credit card. 
9. Life is not fair, but it is still good.
10. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone. Forgive them for everything! 
11. Don't take yourself too seriously. No one else does. 
12. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.
13. Make peace with your past so it won't spoil the present. 
14. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
15. No one is in charge of your happiness except you. 
16. Frame every so-called disaster with these words, "In five years, will this matter?"
17. Help the needy. Be generous. Be a giver, not a taker! 
18. What other people think of you is none of your business.
19. Time heals everything. 
20. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
21. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick, your friends will. Stay in touch!
22. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
23. Each night before you go to bed, pray to God and be thankful for what you've accomplished today!
24. Remember that you are too blessed to be stressed!
25. Share this with everyone on your list to help them lead a happier life!

...Some of these may be easier said than done, but, like I said, it is a great general guideline for making life a little more healthy and stress free. I need to work on many of these myself! Do you have any tips that you would add to the list? Feel free to share! 

Happy New Year, all! I hope it's your best yet!

 ~Trin