Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Enlightened Chili

So....I mentioned last week that this recipe is a definite fave.  My friend Kathy and her mom make this every fall...it is a yummy and healthier chili and I had to get my hands on this recipe.

So in honor of my 6 year "Friendaversary" with Kathy...I finally made it myself and wanted to share the recipe with all of you.

This was us a few weeks ago at a Halloween party....

 and this was us back in 2015 :)

So...back to the chili...

It is easy...and so delish..hope you try and enjoy too!

Here is what you will need...

 3 tbls Olive Oil
2 cups butternut squash- peeled and cut into ½ inch chunks 
3lbs ground turkey

 ½ cup smoky barbeque sauce
3 tbls Chili Powder
1 tbls Ground Cumin 
2 tbls Worcestershire Sauce
Hot sauce to taste 
     1 onion, minced 
 2 red peppers, chopped
2 cups dark beer
1 cup tomato sauce
2 cups canned pinto beans- drained 
 2 cups frozen corn, thawed

and here is how you bring all the deliciousness together....

Warm 1 tbls oil in skillet on high heat. Add squash and saute.  Transfer to large pot.  Return skillet to heat; add remaining oil and turkey.  Brown and add to squash.
 Add next 10 ingredients (don’t add corn). Stir, place pot over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and lower heat. 

Cook for 30 minutes, stirring frequently. Add water if necessary to get the consistency you want.  

Add corn, stir, and remove from heat.

Spoon into bowls 

 Try it...you will thank me!

Monday, November 11, 2019

Our Overnight in Portland Maine and Hello Monday!

So...Rob and I enjoyed an overnight in Portland Maine this weekend with some of our bestest friends....I have been to Portland twice before- once was this same exact weekend....about 5 years ago with girlfriends and once a few summers ago with our family.

It is a great city...quintessential New England...right on the ocean..lots of fun stores and fabulous restaurants...almost like a bigger Portsmouth if you will.

It is funny...we joked that all we did this weekend was eat...talk and laugh..like a lot...it was so good for the soul and grateful for the QT with my peeps.  So...will recap for you and linkup to the various businesses so you can hopefully check them out if you ever make the trek up here!

Here it goes.....


Rob and I got up there first....around 11:30 so we decided to check in to our hotel first.  We stayed at the AC by Marriott in Portland. Check them out HERE

We are enjoying staying at these gems as with Rob's new job, he is traveling more often and is now part of the Marriott Rewards program.  We are so excited because the new AC hotels, part of their brand, are wonderful!

We were right on the harbor and even had a harbor view room!  FTW :)

We dropped our bags off and headed right out for a nice walk in the brisk temperatures.  Despite the chilliness, we were bundled up and really loved the fresh air...I am so in my happy place when I am on or near the ocean...just does something great to me!

We were starving and thirsty so we made a pit stop at Ri Ra which is an Irish Pub...we had gone with my parents a few summers ago and loved it...it didn't disappoint again!  Check them out HERE

We enjoyed a cocktail....

and the yummiest snacks- Everything pretzel rods with Guinness cheese dip and Guinness Marinated wings- you can sense the Irish influence right?  Ha!

 After that, Matt and Beth Ann arrived and we met up with them for another snack at the Old Port Sea Grill and Raw Bar.

BA and I shared some oysters and I enjoyed some brussel sprouts too...Rob didn't care for his wedge salad...it was really funky..I will have to admit...usually a fave of mine but they tried to get too fancy and added dill...usually love it but again..it was just funky- ha!  We still give them a thumbs up...you can check them out HERE

Then we did some more walking around and bopped into a few shops....and Matt took us on a little tour...we joked that he didn't steer us wrong...we were glad because some of our friends gave us a few recommendations and we couldn't get into a few we tried- Duckfat (line out the door and a two hour wait for snacks and shakes- not worth it) and Gross Confections (cute dessert place but didn't open until evening)

We happened upon "The Bar" on Exchange St (no website sorry!) BA and I enjoyed an Elderflower cocktail while the guys enjoyed their beers.

Time for a quick selfie...:)

Then Matt lead us to Dewey's.  What a fun pub!  Great atmosphere and more great snacks!  We split a giant pretzel that came with a charcuterie board (literally) and some nachos.  

Check them out HERE
Can you sense the food theme yet? ;)

After that, we headed back to the hotel to freshen up...more awesome walking...very walkable city and when you are bundled up...the cold actually feels good!

Later, we headed out to dinner.  I had a made a reservation at The Little Tap House.  Check them out HERE

Quick selfie before catching our shuttle...

We noticed some themes in Portland...not what we had expected...we had expected lobster everywhere....but we noticed lots of duck...and lots of craft beers...just throwing that out there.

This was a cute place for a light dinner....my tuna was fantastic...

Our wonderful friends...so silly....

and we capped off our night at 
"The Bar Of Chocolate"...another place with no website....not the best service BUT it was a great way to end our fantastic day of eating!  I had the best Peanut Butter Martini...we shared some cake...I mean seriously...does it get better than this?

We waited a long time for the yummy things and we were all about to fall asleep but we rallied....so glad we did!


I snapped a few pics to show the view from our hotel room...the ocean anytime is amazing...but first thing in the morning...ahhhh

We made one more stop together before heading home- breakfast (because we obviously hadn't eaten enough the day before- ha!)

Matt directed us to Becky's Diner and it was amazing

Check them out HERE

Then we grabbed a few little gifts and headed home...quick...fun...and full of QT...my kind of getaway....treasure these times!

Linking up with Heather and the crew HERE
for Hello Monday!

Friday, November 8, 2019

Friday Favorites

Hi Friends!  So very glad to see Friday, how about you?

This was an insanely busy week...I mean which weeks aren't during these years BUT I felt like I was "on" all week...I really enjoyed it but very grateful for Friday at the same time :)

As always, sharing some faves from our week and linking up with the lovely ladies HERE

Fave Recipe of the Week- Enlightened Chili

In honor of my 6 year friendaversary with my friend Kathy, I made her mom's amazing and healthy recipe this week and Rob and I gobbled it up for several meals.  Will be sharing this delish dish soon!

 Fave MEMEs of the Week!

Fave Christmas Touches

Oh yes....we are going big...Hallmark Movies....Decorations....the Music..it is all happening and I am filled with JOY :)

My Girls- Always a Fave

Another Fave- QT with My People

Celebrating Shannon- one of the best peeps I have met in my life XO

Annual Risotto Night

So last night we made it happen- My annual risotto night with Cass when I make the Autumn Chicken and Squash Risotto.  You can find my recipe HERE 

It is one of my favorite nights of the year...eating...sipping wine...and catching up...and of course sharing many laughs...treasure this QT!

and please excuse the bags- long day of work and commute and did not re-do my makeup...so there's that- ha!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!
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