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Some like it hot...

I am not one of them.

Here is "my" recipe for delicious, low-fat, mild turkey chili.

Try it, it's crazy good.

1 tablespoon vegetable oil (I omit this - but it's what the recipe calls for)
1 pound ground turkey, Italian style
2 (10.75 ounce) cans low sodium tomato soup
2 (15 ounce) cans kidney beans, drained
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained
1/2 medium onion, chopped
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
1/2 tablespoon ground cumin
1 pinch ground black pepper
1 pinch ground allspice
salt to taste
Fat free shredded cheese

Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Place turkey in the skillet, and cook until evenly brown; drain. Coat the inside of a slow cooker with cooking spray, and mix in turkey, tomato soup, kidney beans, black beans and onion. Season with chili powder, red pepper flakes, garlic powder, cumin, black pepper, allspice and salt. Cover, and cook 8 hours on Low or 4 hours on High.

This is my next mission: Simple Beef-A-Roni with Peas. I'm so thankful for people who take the time to make Weight Watcher recipes and post them on their site. It saves me so much time having to do the math. I hate math.

posted by Amanda Wheeler @ 11/30/2007 12:07:00 PM, ,

Where is my Winter Wonderland?

It's 50 degrees out and I'm listening to Christmas music. We put our tree up on Saturday and it was warm and sunny. Where am I?

Plans are in motion for full blown Wheeler Christmas this year. Andy's Mom, Step-mom, Dad and (maybe) Aunt & Uncle are coming for Christmas. Hurray! I'm already plotting and planning menus, extra stockings (surely I have time to whip up a few handmade ones, right?) and gift buying. I'm being purposeful to not lose focus oh why we celebrate though.

Sunday we spent the afternoon with the Odomites and enjoyed pizza from Flatbread. Yummy. We also carried on the tradition of making gingerbread houses (2x surely means "it's a tradition", right?). They blew us out of the water again this year on structural integrity, neatness and overall creativity. Oh well, maybe next year.

For more pics go here:
Christmas Decorating/
Gingerbread Houses

posted by Amanda Wheeler @ 11/27/2007 01:28:00 PM, ,

Happy Thanksgiving!

We had a really unusual Thanksgiving. Andy's parents are down in VA visitng the grandbaby, so we were on our own this year. We spent the day serving at the local Salvation Army and then had a DELICIOUS meal with friends in the evening. Here are a few pictures from our day:

Thanksgiving 2007

We made the paper! Well little Joshua Samuelson from The Rock did!

posted by Amanda Wheeler @ 11/22/2007 10:48:00 PM, ,

First Snow

It's snowing. I have a mix of excitement and despair. I really don't like the inconvenience of it, but it is pretty coming down. I do suppose it's time to put these away in exchange for something more sensible. Hmph.

In honor of the white stuff I've decided to torture the dog with a little photo opt.

I call this line "The Reluctant Reindeer"

"Ok, it's on. Can I have my bone now?"

"Woman! Bone. Now"

"Ohh.. I can taste it"

"White flag. I surrender. Get it off of me."

posted by Amanda Wheeler @ 11/20/2007 11:02:00 AM, ,

Count Your Blessings #3: The Rock Church

This past Sunday our church was "Church like you've never seen it". We cleared out all the chairs, set up tables, and stuffed boxes (Santa's elves style minus the tights) for Operation Christmas Child. We were able to stuff over 210 boxes for needy children all over the world! We almost doubled our boxes from last year! Praise God!

I'm so thankful to be part of a church that loves to serve.

Big pictures here.

posted by Amanda Wheeler @ 11/20/2007 08:46:00 AM, ,

Barry, Barry, Barry

Oh by the way, I forgot to mention my Father-In-Law lit the Thanksgiving candles with a blow torch yesterday.

So proud to be a Wheeler.

posted by Amanda Wheeler @ 11/18/2007 03:34:00 PM, ,

Second Thanksgiving, check.

Today we trekked up to Bangoria for our second Thanksgiving celebration. We drove up with Andy's Mom and Aunt Carol to see Barry and Cathie (Andy's Dad and Step-mom). It was SO nice not to cook this year. Barry prepared most of the meal. Check out his turkey:

Stuffing inside the bird. I'm impressed!

Ok, off to bed. BIG day tomorrow.

posted by Amanda Wheeler @ 11/17/2007 11:09:00 PM, ,

Count Your Blessings #2: Family

(FYI: this blessing countdown is in no particular order)

I'm thankful for my big family! 5 sisters and 2 brothers (not to mention BIL's, SIL's, nieces, nephews and 33 first cousins).


Eldest child (my step brother). Living in South Carolina with wife Nicole and one-year old son Mason. Don't get to see Jason much.


My sister (step) Becky is closest to me in age. We were BFF growing up. She and her husband have lived all over the US because of the ARMY. Most recently they were in Texas for four years before moving back to the North Country to be closer to my parents. Becky has two children Jaslyn (see below) and Lucas (see above).


Heather is next. She's had a year of big changes. She graduated from SUNY Potsdam with a degree in teaching, got married in September and had little Alannah (right).


Jamie went a mission trip to Bolivia last year. She's now waitressing at the restaurant in our little town (note "the" restaurant, not "a"restaurant"...we have but one).


Erin (seen here with frank) is in grad school for psychology. She wants to be a school guidance counselor. I'm rooting for her. Frank finally popped the questions this year so it's full speed ahead to the wedding on August 16th of 2008. Andy and I are making the slide show for the wedding and because Erin was born with the same type A personality that I was she has already sent me all the pictures, labeled and alphabetized. I adore her.


Katie grew up a lot this year. She got married to Eduardo (Ed), actually Edward, but everyone calls him Eduardo or Ed or Eddie. Anyway... So Katie and Ed got married on April Fools Day and then they moved to Georgia where it is hot. Much hotter than Northern New York. They seem to like it down there. Although I know Katie misses home. We talk almost everyday. She always makes me laugh - we are so much alike.


Danny (here with Dad) is turning 14 this year. He is almost unregnozable to me. He is all teenage boy now. It's weird. I wish we could see each other more.

posted by Amanda Wheeler @ 11/16/2007 12:59:00 PM, ,

Count Your Blessings: #1- Home group

Our home group celebrated Thanksgiving together this past Tuesday. It was sort of like potluck Thanksgiving. Mashed potatoes (no lumps) and corn were our contribution. We are so thankful for this group. We meet every other week on Tuesday to share a meal, encourage one another and pray for each other. What could be better?

The star of the evening.

Buffet line

Danielle and Samantha. I adore them.

Alexis (who refused to smile but gave in at the last moment) and Danille (freely willing to smile).

Oye. This is so not Martha.

posted by Amanda Wheeler @ 11/15/2007 09:01:00 PM, ,


Blogging has become a chore. It's always on my to-do list, but it doesn't get done these days. Luckily our season of (extreme) busyness is somewhat dying down. This Sunday is the last class for Every Young Woman's Battle. Great class. Great girls. Lots and lots of prep time. I'm so thankful for what the Lord has done during that small study. I can see hearts and actions change. I, however never expected to get alot out of a study on purity but I did. Being sexually pure doesn't end when you say "I do". What will He show me next I wonder???

I've spent several afternoons this week listening to these sermons (scroll down) on Biblical Womanhood (and Manhood). This guy knows what he's talking about. This topic has been of particular interest to me lately because I have been acutely aware of the fact that our marriage is under a constant microscope (ok well that may be a tad dramatic). My parents who are unbelievers are watching and waiting to see how we handle situations thrown our way and the teens look to us as a model of Christian marriage. Something they don't always see at home. No pressure..

Sermons here at The Rock have been about Unity. Unity of believers, unity in marriages. We are listening Lord...Help us to be United in all we do.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

We got the privilege of watching a four year old last Friday night. I was a little nervous about how she would do sleeping in a strange place, but it was me who had the trouble. I tossed and turned all night worried I wouldn't hear her if she cried. Which by the way, she didn't. We read Veggies and a few chapters of Charlotte's Web and poof...asleep. Surely that doesn't always happen, right?

In the morning we made pancakes. Pink for girls and green for boys (I ran out of blue food coloring).

Lilli mixing the batter.

Mmmm. Nothing like a pepto pink pancake.

I look tired because I am. How do people do this all day long?

Just a crumb. That's all I ask. Oh please.

You can't buy these at a diner.

posted by Amanda Wheeler @ 11/14/2007 03:23:00 PM, ,

Thank you God for lipstick...

Lipstick is great, but wait 'till this little girl finds out about foundation!

Godtube. Check it out!

posted by Amanda Wheeler @ 11/07/2007 12:24:00 PM,


What is it with me and mascots? I attract them like moths to a flame.

Me and "Crackers" from the Portland Pirates

Me and Rover on any given Sunday at The Rock Church (well granted, I am married to Rover).

It's been a busy month and we're only 6 days in. On Friday and Saturday we took the teens to WOL Superbowl. It's an extreme fun, ALL night long event put on by Word of Life out of Scroon Lake, NY. Four of "our" kids came to Christ on Friday. God is really moving in our youth group and through Andy and I. We're just holding on for dear life.

For pics from WOL Superbowl click here....well, the big ones are here.

These overnight things are killing me though. We've had two almost back to back and the bags under my eyes are proof. Bedtime has been moved from 11pm to 9pm effective immediately.

posted by Amanda Wheeler @ 11/06/2007 02:10:00 PM, ,