Changing Lives, One Pot of Chili At A Time

Thanks for all the birthday wishes for Hannah yesterday!  I actually didn’t even talk to her until I was on my way to the restaurant.  She slept in, went thrifting with friends, had lunch out and dinner out too – she said she had a great day!  Ah, to be 22 again!

Tony has to have his blood checked about every 2-3 weeks.  He’s on a blood thinner for his artificial heart valve – the number has to be in a “safe” range – not to thin so he’ll bleed out if he gets cut, or not to thick so he gets a blood clot.  At the clinic he goes to, there is a woman there named Erin who routinely takes care of him.  She totally gets Tony’s sense of humor.  Except he doesn’t call her Erin, he calls her “Sister, Sister” because she looks like one of the Maury twins.  Do you remember that show??


So a few weeks ago she said she saw the article about my Buffalo Chicken Chili and said it sounded really good, but she’s not a very good cook.  Tony told her that I’d make her some and bring it the next time he went.  He went back to the clinic this week and brought home a Thank You note for me.  And while Erin’s husband’s name is John, Tony always refers to him as Maury.  That was so sweet!  She and her husband got married last summer and she has a food processor – but it’s still in the box unopened.  I may have to give her cooking lessons!

3.7 012

I still had $$ left on a Starbucks gift card from Heather, so I stopped there on my way to work and picked up one of their protein boxes for breakfast.   I have to say, I really liked this!  Although if I didn’t have a gift card, not sure I’d shell out $5 for it – but it was convenient.  OMG, the Justin’s peanut butter?  How did I not know about this peanut butter??!!

3.7 007

Work was painfully slow.  Our server was down all day – no access to Word, Excel, our printer networks.  The only thing working was the Internet and email.  To say it was a long day is an understatement!  Luckily I had a great break to my day – Tony picked me up for lunch!  While I still have a major burger jones going on, it was Lent, so we went back to Wok N Fire.  Tony got two sushi rolls and I got this spicy Shanghai noodles with tofu.  So good!  They also give you cucumber water – so refreshing!  Next week I am definitely making a batch of Detox Water again – completely forgot about it.

3.7 010

I was so happy as I was driving to the restaurant that the weather wasn’t too bad – 44 degrees and partly sunny.  So I was surprised that we weren’t as busy as I thought we’d be.  I had a 5 table station, and I was only able to flip one table.  But the customers were great, my service was excellent if I do say so myself.  One strange request though – a woman asked for a baked potato dry, no butter or sour cream, but asked for Worcestershire sauce and doused her potato with that.  Huh!  Ever know anyone to do that??

One of the special appetizers last night was calamari fries.  They looked so good!  I took this picture and showed it to my customers and each table had these for appetizers.

3.7 011

I ended up walking with $120, and was home by 11:00 – not too bad.  Although I was starving.  I normally have soup and bread for dinner but the soups were cream of corn and New England clam chowder – not two of my favorites.  So I stopped by a pizza place on the way home and got pizza bread.  It looked like this, but with sausage instead of pepperoni.  I ended up eating 3/4 of it. 


We ended up watching a couple shows off the DVR.  I can never come home from work and go straight to bed.  Do you guys watch Gold Rush?   There is a family called the Schnaubel’s.  Parker is grandson to John Schnaubel who has been mining gold most of his life.  He has stage 4 prostate cancer and wants Parker and his brother to mine one last place where the grandpa things there is still millions of dollars of gold.  The only problem is that time is running out – winter has almost set in and the grandpa doesn’t have long to live, but the grandsons consent to their grandpa’s wishes to show him before he dies that there is gold there.

To see the relationship between the grandson, the parents and the boys is just remarkable.  And at the end of the show, the grandpa said “all you need in life is health and family.  And when the health goes all you have left is your family.”

I found this youtube video of John’s 93rd birthday.  Who knows how many more he has in him, or for any of us for that matter!

Alright, time to get my cleaning pants on.  Hope you have a great weekend!  Looking forward to seeing Hannah tomorrow for bowling.  See you Monday!  I’ll be picking the winner of the free Spartan entrance fee on Monday – good luck!

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  • Erica
    March 8, 2014 at 11:45 am Thats so sweet that you made them chili! I totally remember sister sister! Justin's is delicious and his story on how he started the business rocks. Love all of their products. Glad you made some good $$. Hope the cleaning goes well ;)
  • Nikki
    March 8, 2014 at 11:57 am I love that family on Gold Rush. I'm always pulling for their group. I can't stand Todd Hoffman, though. I just want to pull on his beard.
  • heather
    March 8, 2014 at 12:37 pm My son eats his baked potato then pours A1 on the skin and picks it up like a sandwich and eats it. He loves it. I think it's way too salty.
  • Kim
    March 8, 2014 at 2:08 pm I like your idea of showing a picture of the appetizer to your customers - pretty sure that seeing the picture would be enough to convince me to go ahead and order. Enjoy your weekend - have fun bowling and hanging celebrating with Hannah!
  • Erin
    March 8, 2014 at 5:34 pm Umm, can I have some cleaning pants, too? I was watching an episode of Hoarders on my iPad this morning and looking around my bedroom, I realized how bad our room has gotten. Piles of clothes and junk everywhere. Ok, so probably not as bad as Hoarders, but still not very homey. I just finished organizing my desk and decided to reward myself with some blog reading time. Okay okay, I'll go clean some more. :) Have a great weekend, Biz!
  • Kym
    March 8, 2014 at 7:34 pm MMMMM Justin's peanut butter is good! I like the hazelnut flavor. Hope you had a great bowling evening.
  • Aimee
    March 8, 2014 at 7:55 pm Love Justin's PB. It's my go to pre-marathon peanut butter. Since I have a peanut butter addiction I only buy the small packets a few times a year, but it really is amazing. I've given up peanut butter for lent. I have issues! I really love the story about the chili. That was really sweet of you. Awesome idea to photograph the appetizer. What a great way to sell the food! Have fun bowling with Hannah!!
  • Roz@weightingfor50.com
    March 9, 2014 at 10:12 am You and Tony are such a great couple!!!! Love the note, so sweet that you made chili. If we lived closer (or in the same country), we could potluck!!! We could also go thrifting together. And swim. OMG....you'd get so sick of me! :) Have a great week Vat!
  • Courtney @ Don't Blink. Just Run.
    March 9, 2014 at 11:26 am I've never heard anyone do that with a baked potato - I wonder how that tastes!
  • A Life From Scratch
    March 9, 2014 at 1:33 pm She is totally right - that chili is the best chili ever!!!! Those calamari fries look amazing and we LOVE gold rush over here! Yea for sun and a bit warmer temps :)
  • Lori
    March 9, 2014 at 3:02 pm Justin's PB is really good. I don't usually have sweetened nut butters - but those packets are awesome for traveling!
  • Tami@NutmegNotebook
    March 9, 2014 at 8:03 pm You two are the best. How nice to make chili for that couple and what a sweet note You got in return. You are the coolest taking a photo to temp your customers! How do you like working at the restaurant?
  • Veronica
    March 10, 2014 at 12:10 am omgosh, I just made some detox water but didn't really follow a recipe, just threw in half a cucumber, a ton of mint, and a sliced up lemon. Awful awful stuff. I don't know if I put in the wrong amounts or what but it tastes like I don't know. Like eat the dirty roots of mint plants. haha! You are so sweet for making Sister Sister (yes, I used to watch that show!) your famous chili. It's one of my favorites too, if not THE favorite. Love it.
  • Laura
    March 10, 2014 at 12:26 pm Okay, even though chili is my boyfriend's dish to make (he uses an award-winning chili recipe), I definitely have to try your recipe - another award-winning recipe!!
  • Fran
    March 11, 2014 at 1:13 am A thank you note like that is a great reward. But we already knew you are a sweet person, always taking care of other people. Usually if something is not working at work it's the email and internet. Not being able to email is really a pain in the you know what because it slows work down. We also have no access then to the servers and not to my documents. Basically I can't do anything then.