Wednesday, January 5, 2011

More treasured memories with family and friends :-) Recipe!

We had many great times this holiday season, and I wanted to share one more post about some of our entertaining. These two children below call us "Aunt" and "Uncle", although we have no blood relation. Alex told me this year he truly considers me his Mom. The story of his life and Mom is a long sad one. I feel God had a reason for us being in their lives, I love these guys so much. When Jerry and I were struggling to conceive we always watched and cared for our friend's kids. Our wallets full of baby pictures...none of our "own" so to speak, but lots of love none the less.

I don't think I'll ever understand how a Mother can abandon her children. These two are amazing children and have been through a lot. We are all close and definitely consider ourselves family. Their Dad is the mutual friend of mine and Jerry would set us up and has been with us for over 20 years. A single Dad doing the best he can.

If not for him...I would not have my family, so for that I am forever grateful. These are friends who have been with us through the good and bad times through the years. I am blessed to have them and I know they will always be there.

My kids adore them too!

More presents to open!

More laughter to share....

Alex loves Tap Out and on black Friday we found these hats clearanced for $1.99! Regularly $30.00! I was super excited about that deal. Alex was too, so much that he couldn't decide what to wear first! LOL

I just love random, happy shots of good times full of love!

The girls were very happy with their pillow pets!

We did have a major issue when our microwave stops working with a house full of people, so Jerry and Chip replaced it.

I think Alex enjoyed being the model in the whole process LOL!

Jerry's twin brother Garry came up with his family at the same time for New Years. This is his son Logan with Hayley.

Hayley being silly wearing Gabby's glasses, but I think they look good on her, so when we go back for our eye exams I'll have to try to find a similar pair.

This is my sister in law Gina, can you see Kathleen sneaking in on the side? LOL

There was a lot of finger pointing and blame for whoever did this to Garry for being the first to fall asleep! LOL

Cool whip attack!! Though Owen enjoyed cleaning it up off the floor. ;-)

The guilty party, his daughter Gabby.

Garry without the cool whip. Also without the hair like Jerry so it's how we tell them apart. LOL.

So about 3 AM the house looked like this...

Room trashed, kids exhausted....

Chip being a good sport in the only bed left.

He has the best sense of humor, he is always cracking us up.
Thank God for all the important gifts of my friends and their o.k. to post these pics on my blog. :-)

I haven't had a chance to post a yummy recipe for awhile so here is one for today.

Slow cooker Vegetarian chili with sweet potatoes (Found in Real Simple magazine)

1 medium red onion,chopped
1 green bell pepper,chopped
4 garlic cloves,chopped
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Kosher salt and black pepper
1 28 ounce can fire roasted diced tomatoes
1 15.5 can black beans rinsed
1 15.5 oz. can kidney beans rinsed
1 medium sweet potato peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces, sour cream,sliced scallions,sliced radishes,and tortilla chips for serving

In a 4-6 quart slow cooker combine the onion,bell pepper,garlic,chili powder,cumin,cocoa,cinnamon,1 teaspoon salt,and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Add tomatoes (and their liquid),beans,sweet potato and 1 cup water

Cover and cook until the sweet potatoes are tender and the chili has thickened,on low for 7 to 8 hours, or on high for 4 to 5 hours

Serve the chili with the sour cream,scallions,radishes,and tortilla chips.


Have a great day!!



Lisa B. said...

Jill I love reading your posts with all your pics. I wish everyone around here was as agreeable to have their photo posted. :( lol. Great job.

I've passed an award along to you, the details are here:

Grace on the Narrow Path said...

Great pictures of your family. God has blessed you my friend.

Janet - AKA: Latte Lady said...

Looks like a BLAST!

Oh yes, my hands are sweating at the thought of going up in that building... NOT!


Junibears said...

What a lovely happy bunch of photos! You all looked as if you were having a whale of a time. Happy New Year to you all. Hugs xx

Vic said...

having friends and family like this is the best...but the memories created are even better....:)

Nezzy said...

Hey sweetie, ya know family isn't always by blood, sometimes their by heart!

I looks like ya'll had everything for a fun and festive Christmas celebration. Ya can tell from your great pics how much everyone is enjoyin' themselves.

God bless ya and have a most magnificent New Year!!! :o)

Kerri said...

How blessed those kids are to have your family in their life. Family doesn't have to be just of blood relation. Looks like you guys had good times and great company!

Jenny said...

I have lots of "family" that has absolutely no blood relation and I think that my life would have turned out a lot differently without them. You are blessed (and so are they).

McVal said...

What a great time! Ok - did you seriously stay up until 3am or did you set the alarm?..

Cindy said...

What a wonderful time you all had.
I can feel the laughter and joy in those photos!
Enjoy the day

Julie Harward said...

I like the recipe, thanks and all the fun going on at your house is great! A woman's heart is so full of love and can open up to take so many in..isn't it great?! Have a good January :D

Cherie said...

This post was just plain fun~! Lots of great pictures of happy people who obviously love being together!
Those kids are SOOO lucky to have such love from you. I too, will never understand why people do the things they do, but where God closes a door he opens a window.
I love your blog! I am so glad you came to visit mine and I am now YOUR newest follower ;-D

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful feel good post I just loved reading every bit of it and how good it made my heart feel. Im so glad that the kids have yall in their lives also. It sure looks like everyone had lots of fun. Thanks so much for sharing and I hope all is going well :o)

Heather's Blog-o-rama said...

Oh this is great ;) :) The photos are awesome and those two precious young people that consider you their mom...that's awesome!! God is good and it makes me smile to know that God placed you in their lives :) :) What a blessing that is in the midst of a less than ideal situation :) :) Okay... love the smiles on everyones faces, too :) :) It looks like everyone had a great time :) :)

Thanks for the slow-cooker recipe. I actually tried to make a slow-cooke recipe today..only to realize after I bou ght the ingredients that I tossed my slow cooker. It was a really old CrockPot...and I have no idea what possessed me to do I made it on the stove top instead. It was a creamy macaroni and beef meal...very easy and very cheap :) :)

I was actually layed off from my job last Thursday. No worries thou gh... God will take care of me and my dad and we'll just have to be more creative with our finances :) :) The upside is that wh ile I'll be job hunting, I'll have more time to catch up with all my favorite blogger friends :) :) :) Love and hugs from Oregon, Heather :)

~Niki~ said...

what a great post! Love all the pics too.

Donna @ The House on the Corner said...

What sweet, sweet pictures and special memories. Looks like you guys had a wonderful Christmas.

Camille said...

What a house-full of fun over the holidays Jill! What a blessing friends and family are. Looks like your Christmas was wonderful.

Have a great week!

Life In a Little House said...

Ha Great pictures!! Your so blessed! We live 3000 miles from the nearest relative. It must be nice to have a house so full ~Thanks for sharing Love Heather