My Best Tip for Cooking with Ground Turkey…and a Twist On Traditional Chili

Autumn is in the air in many parts of the US now. I am enjoying cooler temperatures, crunchy leaves, and pumpkin spice everything. Yes…I am pretty “basic.” 😀 As the nights are longer and temperatures drop, I long for familiar, warm comfort foods, don’t you?

I had a discussion with someone who hated cooking with ground turkey and was asked how I can stand using it in recipes. Well, beef gets old after a bit and I have slightly high family-inherited cholesterol so I try to watch my red meat intake. Enter turkey.

The key I have found is this: seasoning. If I cook Italian dishes, I use basil, oregano, and garlic powder and work them into the turkey before browning. Mexican dishes get my homemade taco seasoning and a pinch of red chili seasoning. And in the picture above, I used garlic and onion powder, hot chili powder, and cumin. This gives flavor to the meat as it’s cooked in during the browning process that I love.

So there it is: my simple tip to add flavor to your turkey. I do sometimes add onions, garlic, and peppers, as well, but the picture above was on grocery day when the cupboard was pretty bare.

And just for something different, or for a Paleo or Whole 30 version, I will share my latest chili recipe seen above.

Turkey Sweet Potato Chili

  • 1 pound seasoned and browned Ground Turkey
  • 2 medium to large sweet potatoes, washed, peeled, and diced
  • 8 ounces of tomato sauce
  • 4 ounces of green chilies
  • 2 cans of chili ready tomatoes (or regular tomatoes with 1-2 T chili powder and cumin to taste…we like a lot of cumin here. I usually season myself but I had the preseasoned cans here that I got on sale)
  • Any veggies you like…I like to sautee green peppers and onions with the meat and throw in
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth or bone broth, if you like a thinner chili

That’s it. Cook on high for about 4 hours. low for around 6.

Do you use ground turkey? Or chili? Let me know what you think if you try seasoning the turkey before using it.

What I’m Eating Lately

I thought I would share my big eating health tip. I do this almost daily and it is versatile, delicious, filling, and packs a punch nutritionally:  salads.

Salads are so easy. I honestly take lots of leafy greens, veggies I have on hand in the refrigerator, a few seeds, some craisins, usually, and a bit of feta cheese. I often throw my leftover protein on there, too. Chicken, chopped or shredded, meat, beans, even chili, all make a great topping for a healthy salad.

I usually have a salad for lunch. It’s easy to throw together while I’m doing other things and I can even make it the night before and take it to work on days that I work a longer shift.

The biggest key for me with salads, honestly, is HOW I eat them. I revert to the childhood method of eating one thing at a time. 😉 Or, hey,  let’s say the fancy way of eating one course at a time. Sounds better! I eat that salad before the main course. I find I slow down and have to chew more and it’s filling so I don’t gobble up too much of whatever is following. It seriously has helped me get in touch with my hunger and satiated signals and that’s such a great benefit.

Other benefits include lots of nutrition, ease of preparation, versatility, no need to cook so minimal clean-up. There are also tons of digestive benefits from eating more raw foods and I find that is so important to my gut health as I get “older and wiser.” 😀

Do you eat salads or other raw foods for your health? Show me your pictures or send me your favorite salad recipes.

Skin Care I’m Loving

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People ask me what I do to care for my skin in my 50s. The biggest factor is that I’ve always looked younger than my age…that is pure genetics. My mom has very few wrinkles on her face in her mid-70s so I was dealt a good hand there.  ( I have terrible vision and am 5’1 3’4″ so the genetics there could be better, haha. We take what we’re given).

I am also pretty fair and had a melanoma scare in my mid-20s. Those two things mean I’ve always worn sunscreen. And, I”m allergic to cigarette smoke so I’ve never picked up that habit.

Other things I think really help are good nutrition(I drink tons of water and eat lots of fruits and veggies, many of them in their raw state) and plenty of sleep. I’m not always great about the sleep but I’m trying to make sure that happens.

Now for the part I get asked about a lot:  products I use. I have found that expensive doesn’t always work and what my skin needs changes with age. I’ve got sensitive skin that’s prone to a bit of redness so I’ve figured out a few things that are simple, inexpensive, and just work for me. I’ll share a few products I’m loving lately.
Neutrogena Ultra Gentle Hydrating Cleanser

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This is super gentle, removes makeup and dirt well, and is not a bit harsh or drying on my face. I love that it’s not expensive and that it has a pump so I can get just the right amount I need. It’s also fragrance-free.   Neutrogena Hydrating Cleanser

 

Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water

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I love this product. I use it in place of a toner and it removes all extra traces of makeup and keeps my skin soft and not tight. I will say that I don’t use waterproof formulas, but if you do, they make a micellar water for waterproof makeup.Micellar Cleansing Water

 

Rosehip Oil

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My current moisturizer of choice is Rosehip Oil. I got this bottle from Amazon and really like it. It doesn’t have a smell to it and a few drops go a long way. I have said before that I got this tip from my friend Lisa Pentony of Pilates by Lisa and it has seriously been a game changer. You can use this to make your own tinted moisturizer, it works well under makeup, and helps my skin not get so dry when I use my night cream with retinol. In the winter, if I get really dry, I use pure organic coconut oil. Simple and effective.  Rosehip Oil

Neutrogena Healthy Skin Anti-wrinkle Cream with Retinol

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Three nights a week I use this Neutrogena cream with retinol. I like how it helps with fine lines and helps my skin stay smoother. It’s fairly inexpensive as retinol products go and it lasts a long time since you don’t need to use a lot.  Neutrogena Night Cream with Retinol

 

CeraVe Moisturizing Facial Lotion AM, SPF 30

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This is my go-to facial moisturizer with sunscreen. it is fragrance-free, gentle, and has a good amount of SPF sunscreen in it. It blends well and isn’t too dry feeling under makeup(although I often use a bit of rosehip oil on my face before the moisturizer). I really like this product. Cerave Sunscreen

There you have it. Simple and quick and it works for me. Everything I use is fragrance-free and doesn’t bother my sensitive skin.

Share with me any skin care products you’re loving.  Do you enjoy indulging or are you a drugstore maven like me? Let me know your thoughts.

Two Things I’ve Learned That Will Help You At Your Job

So, it’s funny I would write this after being employed exactly one week…following twenty-two years as a Stay-At-Homeschool-Mom! But in that short of time, working in retail, I’ve already seen two things that will almost universally help each of us perform well and enjoy our job more.

Now I realize I don’t know your workplace dynamics, etc. And there are things that are out of our control. But I’ve observed my coworkers and have talked with my managers and customers and realize that there are a couple of things we can control. And they really help. And honestly, it boils down to one thing: attitude.

You really do have something to contribute. And people really do need you there. So believe that and think about these two things.

People Bring Their Unique Stories and Personalities to their Job

Seriously, there is no one at your company, school, store, or workplace like you. That’s lived your life, had your experiences and has your personality. I have coworkers who are bubbly and extroverted, quiet, male, female, older, and younger, and all are good at what they do in their own way. So for me, I’ve been a stay-at-home mom, a homeschooler, a pastor’s wife, student, and middle-aged person. I’ve lived in three different states. I’m introverted but love people. And, I’m intuitive and can often read people well. So I bring all that to the table and can share with my customers from my perspective that no one else has. You have that too with everyone you meet. So do you and do it well. You’re special.

 

People Crave Connection

Others we work with, whether in the public, our supervisors or coworkers, want connection. We are all made for relationships. And we want to be heard. Since you’re a one-of-a-kind person, you have the ability to connect with people like no one else on the planet. Seriously. The best thing we can do is know our story and listen to the story of others. Then we can connect in ways that help us meet needs. Can we always make others happy or satisfied? No, but we can try our best to connect. That makes even the difficult situations more bearable, in my opinion. So listen and try to understand a perspective that isn’t your own. It will make a big difference to you and to other people.

Honestly, I didn’t learn this in a week on the job. I’ve learned it in all of life. As a mom, a wife, a friend, student, pastor’s wife, and fellow human being. People matter. When that becomes my priority, to honor others (and I personally do this as a way of honoring God), then there is a satisfaction for me even at the end of those really hard days.

Tell me the best things you’ve learned about working and doing life with others. Leave me a comment, drop me an email, or visit my page on  Facebook.   I would love to hear your story and learn from you!