Giving Thanks


I love November! It’s my favorite time of year…even if it’s STILL in the high 80’s here in Florida. I don’t need to see the leaves change color (or rake and bag them for that matter) because cold weather usually follows the falling leaves…and I despise the cold.

I love November because it’s a season full of gratitude and thanksgiving. It truly is a time to sit back and reflect upon all of the blessings of the year. That’s why when I had the opportunity to cook dinner for the families of the Ronald McDonald House with the ladies of my MOPS group I went.

Truth be told, I was a bit nervous as we pulled up to unload the food from the car but once I got into the kitchen, the nervousness quickly left. We all worked together seamlessly prepping the meal and serving it to the families.

We ended up making a TON of Turkey Chili (plenty for leftovers and even some to stick in the freezer), two trays of corn bread, lots of macaroni & cheese and chocolate frosted brownies.


Turkey Chili (adapted from Good Housekeeping)

1 1/3 lbs ground turkey

2 onions, chopped

1 green pepper, chopped

2 15oz cans of beans, rinsed & drained

1 28oz can of diced tomatoes, undrained

1 15oz can of tomato sauce

1 cup of water

2 tbsp of chili powder

1 tsp dried basil

½ tsp black pepper

1 tbsp garlic powder

-Cook ground turkey, onion & pepper until the turkey is brown and the onion is tender.

-Stir in beans, tomatoes, tomato sauce, water & seasonings.

-Bring to boiling, reduce heat & simmer covered for 20 minutes.

-Top with cheese and/or sour cream.


This was a chance for me to give back to our community, to do something to help. If you didn’t know, the Ronald McDonald House houses families that have children undergoing medical treatment at nearby hospitals. Providing hot meals is one of the MANY ways that RMH makes it feel like a home away from home. It was something I wish I could have done for my own family in New Jersey.

Since April of 2014, my sister and her family have spent countless days away from home to move the ends of the earth for their beautiful daughter…my beautiful niece. A few months before her 5th birthday, she was diagnosed with Wilms’ Tumor. After numerous appointments, radiation, chemotherapy and surgery, she is currently 11 months cancer free!! Next month when all the scans come back clear, she will have made it to the one year milestones! And that is HUGE!

Check out these links below to see just some of the many volunteer opportunities right here in Orlando, ‘The City Beautiful’

Toys For Tots

Ronald McDonald House

Give Kids The World

Second Harvest Food Bank

Coalition For The Homeless

Together We Rise

Lighthouse Central Florida

How do you give thanks in your city?

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