Chili, Sledding, and Mardi Gras

So there we were, innocently enjoying spring-like weather for about a week, when BAM — snow again. And what better way to enjoy the change in weather than with a chili party?

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On Friday, our fellow Order of the Shovel member Jessica decided — after a four-year hiatus — the Chili Cookoff needed to happen again. A few fellow Shovelers (and some strangers from Jessica’s Bible Study) showed up to sample around seven different kinds of chili to vote on the best, the spiciest, and the most unique of the bunch. Kate brought her girls along, who kept Hannah busy as the rest of us loaded up on chili (and cinnamon rolls) as we shoveled throughout the night. My Asian chili didn’t win any awards, but I liked it enough to make it again. Here’s the recipe if you want to try it.

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The next day, we took advantage of the momentary snow by taking Hannah and Aaron kids down to Sand Park for some sledding. Aaron was old enough now to participate fully with Hannah as the two rode down the hill, flung snowballs, and made snow angels. Even mommy got in on the fun. We dropped by grandma and grandpa’s house afterward for hot cocoa, which was a particularly nice way to warm up before calling it a day.

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Then came Fat Tuesday. We hadn’t had a proper Mardi Gras celebration in over six years, so Vivian and I invited Phil and Jen and Jenny and Kody over for jambalaya and King Cake together, complete with a plastic baby. There were also beads thrown about, but nothing more than couldn’t be shown on television. Now begins the season of Lent, which means fish fries and giving up random vices, like fast food and using Facebook around the house. Good times, and I’m not even Catholic.


Sledding at Sand Park

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