Mmh Turkey Chili

In the Fall, I decided to look online for some soup and chili recipes as the weather was getting cooler and I really wanted to start cooking more. I ended up stumbling upon the most amazing Turkey Chili recipe on Pinterest. It looked amazing and was advertised as healthy and under 400 calories per serving, so I had to try it.

Since then, I have made this recipe countless times – on the stove and in the Crockpot. It is so simple and so very delicious.

I generally make it on Sundays and then will pack it in a Tupperware container in the morning while preparing my lunch. I actually have to actively stop myself from emptying the entire pot into the Tupperware – no joke. The last time I made this recipe, I took pictures of every step. Look below to see how it gets put together. And then go to Ambitious Kitchen (link here) to read the actual recipe and thank Monique for bringing this into our lives.

First, you cut up the vegetables. I added green peppers, even though the recipe only calls out for red. I love love love green peppers so I add them to everything I can.

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Then you cook the vegetables. See how easy this is?

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Then you add the spices. The recipe will tell you exactly how and what, but this intuitive picture does as well. It’s the 21st Century, look how cool the internet can be!

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So you mix it into the cooked ground Turkey with the vegetables and it’ll look something like this…

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Next you have to add all chicken broth, diced tomatoes, corn, and dark red kidney beans! The recipe calls out for 1 28 oz can of diced tomatoes, but the cans I buy are 14 oz. As I don’t like my chili to be watery and cooked tomatoes kinda weird me out, I just use the one can…

I realize the picture below is misleading as I accidentally opened two without realizing that I only use one. My sincerest apologies.

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So then I threw it all into the Crock Pot and put it on high for three hours. And this is the end result. How amazing does that look???

 

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When I eat this, I just put it in a bowl, add some cheddar cheese and oyster crackers and shovel it in my mouth.

No, I really do shovel it. It’s very attractive – I promise you.

 

Let me know your thoughts once you’ve made this yourself! Click here for the recipe if you didn’t already click on it above. Just make it. Do it. And thank Monique from Ambitious Kitchen after you do… 🙂

 

Much Love

xxx

All the Hair Products

Not to sound incredibly arrogant, but my hair is one of my favorite things about myself. Around puberty, my hair went from naturally stick straight to naturally curly. It was very odd, but I am so happy that it did! During summer and on beach days, I can just let my hair air dry and easily master the beach wave look without much effort. My hair is also incredibly easy to work with and style. It’s frizzy if I blow dry it but as soon as I use a ceramic styling iron, the frizz is gone. I can straighten it in less than 10 minutes, or curl my hair many different ways and it will hold for up to 4 days (if I don’t wash it) and that’s even sleeping with it in a bun – or an onion (as D likes to call it). I don’t mean to brag, but my hair is kick ass.

But it takes time, effort, and much TLC to keep it this way. As I previously stated, it’s one of my favorite things about myself so I take very good care of it.

Below is a list of products I use and highly recommend:

OGX Shampoo and Conditioner

I began using the OGX products years ago and haven’t stopped. Their shampoo and conditioner bottles are about $5-6 each, smell really good, and I can always notices a difference in my hair. There is one for each individual problem you are trying to tackle. I have gotten many of my friends into this brand as I swear by it. I’ve used the bamboo fiber-full, Brazilian keratin therapy, coconut milk, biotin & collagen, keratin oil, and the teatree mint ones. You can get these at any grocery store, Ulta, or even on Amazon, if you prefer to shop online.

Here are all the hair products.

OGX Argan Oil of Morocco

I wasn’t lying when I said I love this brand…

When I get out of the shower and have towel dried my hair, I immediately spray this on top. Not only is it adding more awesome oils to your hair, but it also acts as a detangler. Be careful not to spray too much otherwise you’ll look oily. You can find this at select grocery stores, Target, Ulta, or Amazon.

Bumble & Bumble Thickening Mouse

I began using this two years ago after I changed hair stylists and saw that every time she used this, my hair felt so much thicker. I bought myself one to use every day and haven’t missed a day since. You can get it at Sephora, for $30.

Big Sexy Hair Hairspray

I have been using this since I was a teenager. I went through so many different kinds of hairspray growing up and one day my mom bought me this one. Insanely thankful she did. You don’t have to use a lot of this for it to work. You can get the extreme hold or not. I don’t because like I said above, my hair holds really well to begin with. It’s about $17 at your local grocery store, Target, or Ulta.

Coconut Oil

Now I don’t use this every day, but when I was dying my hair vigorously, I would take a little bit and put it on my ends before I blow-dried my hair to help lock in the moisturizer after a shower. I have also done coconut oil masks when I know I won’t be in public for a couple days. Put some coconut oil in a boil and place it on top of a bowl of really hot water to melt the oil. Then spread the coconut oil all over your hair and leave in for 20-30 minutes. Rinse it all out and dry your hair. It feels amazing, but will look really oily until about two more washes.

Tangler Teezer Brush

I saw this at Sephora and asked for it for Christmas and was very pleased when I saw that my mom bought it for me. I’ve only had it for a month now, but I love it! You can use it when your hair is wet or dry and it works wonders, especially if you’re trying to be gentle with your hair. I wouldn’t suggest this if you have really thick hair as it would take a really long time to brush through everything, but I do feel that less hair comes out into my brush with this new one. And to add to that, it’s super easy to clean. You just grab the hair in one pull and you’re done. It’s not even expensive. Just go buy one. Do it.

I think from reading through all these, you can gather that I put a lot of oil in my hair. It’s slowly coming to light that oils are amazing for our bodies. Whether you’re putting it in your hair, on your face, your body, or ingesting it, oils are very beneficial and I have slowly realized that over the last few years.

 

What hair products do you use that you swear by? Any other brands that have different kinds of oil as their main ingredients that you like? Comment below or write me on Twitter -@knackeredchaos!

 

Much Love

xxx

London, Baby!

This post kind of picks up where the Virgin Airlines post left off. As soon as I got off the plane, I was at London Heathrow Airport which is the definition of chaotic. In 2015, it was listed as the third busiest airport in the world. My boyfriend picked me up with a single red rose, mind you, and we set off into the sunset!

LOL nope. Just kidding. Never going to happen.

Anyway, we had planned to do a bit of a celebration for Christmas that night as I was knackered (exhausted – for those who don’t speak British English) and we were going to spend Christmas Eve and Day apart. He had already gone out and bought a Christmas tree for us to decorate, so we had to go buy decorations. We got to his flat, located in Romford – near Essex – and decorated the tree after I showered and changed my clothes. We then spent the rest of the day drinking Prosecco, listening to Christmas music, and watching Christmas movies. He made his famous Spaghetti Bolognese – which was insanely amazing – and I fell asleep on the couch…..

Only 1 hour of sleep on the plane. Can you blame me??

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Christmas Tree Selfie

 

I was only scheduled to be there for a week so we had a lot to fit in.

The next day we slept in and had to run out to the store as my curling iron and straightener were not heating up with the adapter I bought. We had plans later that night to eat at Sushi Samba with some friends, which is located on the 38th and 39th floor of 110 Bishopsgate in London. The food was delicious, the company was lovely, and the views were spectacular. We went out in Shoreditch to a couple of different pubs afterwards and spent the rest of the night intoxicated like a regular British person would.

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M and I out in Shoreditch

On Sunday, we woke up with a not-so-carefully crafted hangover that was only to be cured by a McDonald’s breakfast/lunch.

No, I refuse to call McDonald’s brunch.

This is when I discovered that Coca-Cola changes their recipe for different countries! The coke probably had half of the sugar it has in America and it was so much better. I honestly felt ignorant for not knowing this and ashamed for my fellow Americans. As a nation, why are we not actively questioning the ingredients in our food and drinks? I was plagued by this the entire trip – still am. It’s a scary thought, and probably for another time…

Moving on.

Later that night, we went to Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park. And this absolutely had to be included in my list of favorite things to do in London. I believe it’s open in December and January every year. We had a blast! We were there for 3 hours and probably only went through ¼ of it. You don’t have to pay to get in, but you do have to pay for all the rides and games. You buy the tokens and use them for your fun. We decided to each choose two rides of our liking, to keep it fair.

The first one we went on was a spinny one, called “The Waltzes.” I was freaking out for this. It’s D’s favorite ride and he spent the entire time giggling/screaming in my ear. It was hilarious. We could not stop laughing, and in the end, I loved it. I also chose a ride that slowly rises to the top and then free falls very quickly, and almost made D crap his pants. I thoroughly enjoyed that. We had to get a drink afterwards to calm him down. I had my first mulled cider. YUM. We left and came out near the West End of London and walked around for an hour or two until we decided to get the tube back to his flat.

Monday had been designated tourism day. We got up early and saw everything from the London Tower to the Tower Bridge. We had an appointment to have champagne at the top of the Shard, so we walked along the South Bank until 3pm. It was foggy and there wasn’t a whole lot of visibility which was a tad bit disappointing, but we still got to see enough of London from the tallest building in the UK! See selfie below.

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Top of the Shard

We also managed to get to Somerset House, Covent Garden, Big Ben, and Buckingham Palace.

We were able to end the night at Platform 9 ¾ at Kings Cross Station. I was absolutely delighted. I mean, look at my face.

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And here D and I are sitting next to each other on the train. He’s 6’7” and I’m 5’2”. Can you tell?

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Tuesday morning we went to Greenwich Park and stood next to the Meridian Line. There was an amazing view of London once you managed to walk up the steepest hill in all of the world.

This is probably not true, but it felt like I had been climbing a ladder for three years.

It was a beautiful day. The sky was clear and we had perfect weather.

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Greenwich Park at the Meridian Line

Later that night we went for a 15-course dinner at a place called Kitchen Table at Bubbledogs. When you walk inside, they take you to the back of the restaurant and you sit around the kitchen where you can watch the chefs prepare the food, while drinking champagne. This has also been included in the list of my favorite things we did in London. The food was so weird. One course was parsley ice cream, and in another the chef used beet root as part of a dessert. But it was all so very scrumptious, and the staff were very nice and accommodating. We would go back in an instant. Some of the food served pictured below:

Afterwards, we went out with my best friend who also lives over there, M, and had some drinks around Westminster. We went to a famous club called Tiger, Tiger, which was not that great despite all the talk about it. The clubbing scene isn’t really our thing, but we managed to have a good time anyway.

Wednesday, we went up to Swadlincote – near Burton – to meet D’s family and home town friends. The drive was about 3.5 hours, so we spent most of the morning driving. We got to his mum’s house and visited with her and his sister and her wife. Then his aunt and uncle came ‘round so we could all go out to dinner. This was another one of my favorite parts about the trip. His family was absolutely lovely, and I’m not saying that just because they could potentially read this, but because it was the truth. We just spent the entire time laughing, which is what I usually do with my own family, so it didn’t feel all too much different. After dinner, we went out with his friends he grew up with. And the rest of the evening was filled with even more laughter. We stayed the night as we had a long drive back and we had been drinking. A lot. A lot of drinks. All the drinks.

So on Thursday, we left to go back to his flat for our last night together in England. *insert very sad face here* Even as I’m typing, it makes me sad that I had to leave. We just stayed in and spent quality time together before getting up early the next morning to catch my flight.

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Gorgeous English sunset on our last night

I did not want to leave. And I miss it every day. I had crumpets with tea every morning for breakfast. If you’ve never had crumpets before, you are missing out on more than you could ever imagine. If you’re ever in England, you absolutely MUST try them with some English Breakfast tea. It is divine. And you will become addicted. You have been warned. (PSA – don’t buy the American-made ones. They’re horrible and made me feel really sad because we tend to butcher everyone’s food.)

As you can see, we were busy the entire time I was there. There was always something to do, and we didn’t even get through half of it. Next time I go back, we are going to the Harry Potter Studio Tour. Like that is not even a question. It’s happening. And many many more things planned.

Crossing my fingers I get to go back soon…..

What are your favorite things to do in London? Any restaurants or places I must go next time I visit? Comment below or write me on Twitter – @knackeredchaos!

 

Much Love

xxx

Flat Digital HD Antenna: The Why and How

It’s long been known that Comcast/Xfinity has horrible customer service but because they’re the only company in my area that could give me cable and internet, I elected to use their services. Now as this isn’t a review on Comcast’s crappy services, I’ll skip a lot of the story and move on.

Anyway, I realized that in the last 6-8 months, the only thing I was really using cable for was the free movies and to watch the news in the morning. At an extra $80 a month, that’s hardly worth it. So I decided to get rid of my cable subscription. I have Netflix and Hulu accounts, but found that I’m still missing my morning news, and the occasional award show on Sunday nights.

Therefore, I purchased a Flat Digital Antenna on Amazon. For the specific model I bought, click here.

It is ridiculously easy to set up, but I laid out the instructions below for reference.

1 – Open the package, contents shown below:

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2 – Connect everything. Make sure the cable is screwed into the antenna input on your TV, and then plug in the power adapter from the digital antenna.

3 – Turn your TV on, click on menu on your remote, click on Broadcasting, then Auto Program. It may look something like this on your TV:

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4 – Wait 10 minutes or so for your TV to grab all the channels.

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5 – Done! You should have some channels to flip through now.

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You may have to troubleshoot a bit. I plugged everything in and then realized I never plugged the cable cord into the TV (lol, don’t laugh). I have also read that it helps if you put your flat antenna near a window to get better signal and more channels. I can’t do that as my entertainment unit is too far away from the windows, but I still get a fair amount of channels. And now I can watch the news in the morning for free! Problems solved.

 

Are any of you using other devices to get basic cable other than this? If so, comment below or write me on Twitter – @knackeredchaos!

 

Much Love

xxx

An Overnight Upper Class Flight from DTW to LHR on Virgin Airlines: A Review

The week before Christmas, I took a trip to England. I booked my flight in the summer, back when I had some money, and decided that I would fly first class on the way there. Now even though it costed a shit load of money, it was definitely worth it. And now I have a new blog piece right?? 🙂

Before I got on the plane, I only knew what my boyfriend and parents had told me about flying first class on an overnight flight, as this was my first time. So I’ve decided to inform those of you who don’t know anyone who can fill you in so that you can be prepared. I personally think it’s nice to know what to expect so you don’t look completely stupid and in shock the entire time.

I was the fourth person on the plane. I immediately found my pod and situated myself. Two minutes after I had sat down a flight attendant came by with champagne and I did not reject it. There was a little bag on your seat next to the menu that includes what’s to offer for dinner and breakfast. Inside the bag, I found a toothbrush and toothpaste, lavender spray for my pillow, an eye mask, a pen, etc. (I say etc. because I actually can’t remember anything else they put in there – sorry).

It takes a while to board everyone on the plane, so I just read my book and sipped my champagne until the captain came on to notify us that we would be departing soon.

 

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(Above: Me reading in my pod in seat 3K waiting to take off. Book: The Woman in Cabin 10)

The flight attendants then came around to get us situated for dinner once we were in the air. They took out my tray, put a placemat on top, and laid out silverware and glasses. I, then, had about 6 different options for wine to drink – I tried all the reds, obvs. As I mentioned before, the menu was provided before we sat down so I had some time to look it over. When the flight attended came to me I ordered a quinoa salad for a starter and a chicken dish for the main. They also came around with warm rolls about 3 or 4 times and you could pretty much eat as much as you want and I did. The food was good! I was very surprised that plane food could actually be tasty.

Throughout the whole duration of the flight I watched movies on the entertainment unit they provide in my pod that leaned back far enough to be very very comfortable. I am only 5’2” and I fit perfectly. After about two hours into the flight, everyone began to lay down for sleep.

The flight attendants come by with a “sleep suit” that you can choose to accept or decline. I accepted as I was told the duvet gets white fuzz all over your clothes. I didn’t have much of a problem with fuzz, but it was nice to have a change of clothes for sleep, especially if you’re a person who travels in jeans or something uncomfortable (weirdo). You can ask a flight attendant to turn your pod into the bed whenever you’re ready and they’ll get the pillow and duvet out for you.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t really sleep. It wasn’t the most comfortable bed in the world and they ask you to keep your seatbelt on so if you move around a lot in your sleep – like me – it makes it a bit restricting. The guy behind me was snoring rather loudly and as that became the only thing I could focus on, sleep wasn’t coming quickly. But the real reason I couldn’t fall asleep was because of the fact that I was SO EXCITED, not only to be in England, but to see my boyfriend as it had been a month since I’d seen him last. I ended up getting an hour-long nap before I woke up to the smell of breakfast.

You don’t have to wake up for breakfast if you don’t want to, but the advice I received was to take full advantage of everything first class offers. And I’m sure glad I did.

I felt really bad as at this time my stomach was a bit queasy so I didn’t eat much of the breakfast they gave me. I did, however, order some tea with my breakfast in hopes that it would help my stomach. I ordered it black and got the weirdest looks from the flight attendant, forgetting that tea in England is very strong compared to the tea in America. So drinking English breakfast tea black is not a smart idea when you have a stomachache, or any time for that matter. I didn’t finish that either. Anyway, I went to the bathroom to change and tried to do a bit of makeup, and then a half hour later we had landed.

All in all, it was a very successful flight. I would fly Virgin every time if I had the option – the staff was friendly and the service was impeccable, and to top it off, we arrived earlier than scheduled! And first class ain’t that bad either 😉

 

Are there specific airlines you feel devoted to after a positive flight experience? Comment below or write me on Twitter – @knackeredchaos!

 

 

Much Love

xxx

The Ten Best Ideas to Keep Valentine’s Day Interesting in 2017

It’s 2017. We’re halfway through January. And Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. It’s time to think about plans.

Last year, I was happily single and went to see Deadpool by myself in theatres. It was awesome and I loved how content I was.

But this year, I’m in a long-term, long-distance, and committed relationship (as I’ve been told to say) so I probably won’t be able to get away with going to the movie theatre alone this year.

I understand that everyone has a different relationship status so I created three separate lists to help spark some ideas for celebrating Valentine’s Day this year. See below for inspiration!

For those who are killin’ it single style:

  • Wine, cheese, and bread. Need I say more? Not sure if I even need to go on, but I promised you a list….
  • Go to the theatre! See a chick flick, or a funny action movie. Make your own stove-popped popcorn and sneak it in (because movie theatre prices are absolutely ridiculous) and enjoy a date night to yourself. It’s fun, try it.
  • Do that thing you’ve been wanting to do but keep putting off. Whether it’s cleaning out your closet (separate post to follow), or organizing your music library, the time is now. Or, shall I say, on February 14th.
  • What you usually do on a Tuesday. Because Valentine’s Day should just be about showing your love to the special people in your life and it does not have to be about couples. Just send some nice texts or cards out to your loved ones and make yourself a nice homemade dinner. With wine, of course.

For those who have dates:

  • Burgers! Go get a juicy burger and fries. You don’t have to break the bank! And then go home and give each other a nice massage, once you’ve digested. I suggest using a massage bar from Lush. They are absolutely divine.
  • Light a fire – if you have a fireplace, or live somewhere where it’s warm enough to sit by a fire pit. Nothing much more romantic than sipping wine next to a fire in the Winter.
  • Make a 3 or 4-course dinner together. You can each be responsible for different courses. But it’d be a good way to save money, have some fun, and keep it romantic.

For those who are also in long-term, long-distance, and committed relationships:

  • Game night! Facetime and play games together online or on your phone. You could try a couple’s game. The internet has everything.
  • Movie night. Facetime and try playing a new Netflix movie at the same time. I can’t tell you this would work out perfectly, but you could give it a try. And let me know how that one goes!
  • Sexy time night. Facetime and well, you know. Please don’t tell me how this one goes. Best to keep that to yourself….

I hope you found a good idea or inspiration from one of these. But the most important thing is that you decide to do what you want to do and make it a good night to remember. Money? Relationship status? The most important thing is to have fun! It’s Valentine’s Day for crying out loud.

Let me know if you tried any of these suggestions and tell me how they worked for you. Comment below or write me on Twitter – @knackeredchaos!

 

Much Love and Happy Valentine’s Day!

xxx

Five Ways to Fight Hormonal Acne

Being a woman is not easy. I’m sure most of you know this as you’re either a woman yourself or you know one. Regardless of your gender, you can’t deny this fact: our hormones are messed up all the time. After a couple years doing the same routine, you think you know your body and you can begin to predict or understand when things start acting up. But the moment you change something, say, I don’t know, your birth control or get an IUD, your hormones go haywire and you have to start all over again.

Therefore, we need to find new ways to be smart. When it comes to acne, I have had my fair share. And I’ve tried everything – from all of the topical creams, washes, and ointments to all of the medications. I’ve been on every antibiotic known to man, and even went through six months of Accutane. Guess what? I still have acne. I am 25 years old and still battling acne!

It’s frustrating. And since I know that it is 100% attributed to my hormones, there’s only so much I can do about it. But, I’m still trying. Below is a list of suggestions I have that have worked for me and some of my favorite products, and where you can buy it:

  • Drink lots of water. This will never not solve your problems. Water is so important, especially for your skin. It is recommended to drink around 8 glasses a day – 64 oz.
  • Make sure to wash your face in the morning and before bed. If you’re not doing this, you’re already doing skincare wrong. Also, make sure you’re using actual face wash as other soaps and products can be too harsh for your face.
  • Find a moisturizer that won’t clog your pores – paraben free – and use it morning and night. I use First Aid Beauty products for both a face wash and moisturizer morning and night as it’s really safe for sensitive skin. You can find it at Sephora here.
  • Kate Somerville spot treatment. This is especially useful for the big cystic acne that you need to dry up quickly. Just get a Q-tip and dab it on your spot before bed. The next day you will see that it has significantly shrunk. You can get it here.
  • Tea Tree Oil. This stuff feels great and smells nice. You can pretty much find it anywhere. Just put it on the affected area once or twice a day, depending on what works for you.

If you try all 5 of these steps, have given it a good couple of weeks, and you’re not seeing anything improve, I would definitely see a dermatologist. Everyone’s situation is different, especially when it comes to acne and hormones – and there’s no sure way of fighting it.

Are there certain products or suggestions that have especially worked for you not mentioned above? Comment below or write me on Twitter – @knackeredchaos!

 

Much Love

xxx