DIY: Hearty, Healthy, and Yummy Veggie Chili

Watch me cook delicious, healthy, and satisfying veggie chili in my Instant Pot.

The weather is finally cooler in Pennsylvania, it made me crave delicious veggie chili. Warm yourself up by making some hearty, healthy, and easy veggie chili in the Instant Pot.


  • 2 TBSP Olive Oil
  • Carrots, 1/2 cup, chopped into bite sized pieces
  • Red Bell Pepper, 1 pepper, chopped
  • Yellow Bell Pepper, 1 pepper, chopped
  • Green Bell Pepper, 1 pepper, chopped
  • Yellow squash, 1 squash, chopped
  • Onion, one medium, chopped
  • 1 TSP of Orrington Farms Vegan Vegetable Broth Base
  • 2 TBSP chili powder
  • 1 TBSP Cumin
  • One pinch of Tajin Chili Lime Seasoning
  • Black beans, one can, rinsed and drained
  • Kidney beans, one can, rinsed and drained
  • Pinto beans, one can, rinsed and drained
  • Two or three pickled jalapeños rings, chopped
  • Diced tomatoes, one small can
  • Fire roasted diced tomatoes with seasonings, one small can
  • The juice of one Lime
  • 2 TBSP tomato paste
  • pink sea salt to taste
  • I forgot to add garlic, but a couple of cloves of garlic would be great, ha ha

Possible toppings for your chili:

  • Shredded cheddar, or Monterey Jack, or Mexican blend cheese
  • Sour cream or plain Greek yogurt
  • Avocado
  • Cilantro
  • Lime wedges
  • Jalapeno rings
  • Tortilla chips
  • Corn bread
  • corn chips
  • Cheddar bay biscuits
  • Biscuits
  • Nachos on the side
  • Baked potatoes on the side


Put your instant pot on the sauté setting and sauté all the veggies in olive oil until soft. Add in broth base and spices, beans, and diced tomatoes, and stir. Then add lime juice and tomato paste. Season with pink salt to taste. My Instant Pot would not seal, so my chili cooked for about 32 minutes with the lid on. If it would have sealed, I would have done 8 minutes on High Pressure, Manual Release (sealing the valve).

Garnish with cheese, sour cream, avocado, jalapeños, and yellow corn chips.

Please see my how-to video. If you try this chili, please let me know in the Comments. If you have any special ingredients that you add to your veggie chili recipe, or any special veggie chili recipe you use, I’d love to hear about it in the Comments! Please feel free to Like, Follow, Comment, and Share. Please also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel, I would love to have you as a subscriber!

Thanks for joining me! Happy Cooking!

Carla XOXO


Dollar Tree Hauls – Multiple Stores

Check out my shopping show and tell purchases from The Dollar Tree.

I went to a couple of different Dollar Trees over the course of a couple of weeks. If I have the time, I try to stop in once a week or so to see what’s new. Right now is a great time to go because they have a medley of holidays there right now, some Halloween still on the shelves, some Thanksgiving and Harvest themes, and some Christmas is starting to roll out on the shelves. So if there is something specific you are looking for, now is the time to check it out before the shelves get picked over, which seems to happen a lot at my local Dollar Tree. I put together a Show and tell video of all of my Dollar Tree purchases, with a couple of Aldi finds thrown in at the end.

Check out my Dollar Tree Hauls – Multiple Stores video. Please feel free to Like, Comment, Follow, and Share. I would love for you to Subscribe to my YouTube Channel to see my future craft projects, hauls, and recipes!

Happy Shopping!

Carla XOXO

Unboxing: Desert Steel Indoor/Outdoor Pumpkin Luminary

Watch me unbox my new Desert Steel Indoor/Outdoor Pumpkin Luminary from QVC!

I am a big QVC watcher and shopper. When I saw the Desert Steel Pumpkin Luminary on QVC, I loved the look of them and wanted one for my front porch. While the price was fairly steep, I figured it was something I could get out year after year. I had trouble choosing between the white and the orange, but finally choose the white. And I chose the tall versus squatty size because I thought the tall would look more substantial. I would have bought the squatty one too if the price was a little lower.

I checked the QVC website and these are currently priced at $45.36. It is item number M47558. You will get use out of this pumpkin luminary from the early signs of fall until after Thanksgiving.

The tag that was attached to the pumpkin base.
The pumpkin with a hole to attach the stem.
The pumpkin stem was packed separately.
Attaching the stem.
The luminary pumpkin on my front porch.
The Pumpkin Luminary all lit up with a battery operated candle inside.

Please note that I do not get any commission from QVC or Desert Steel for this post. I am simply a QVC shopper and thought you would like to see my purchase. Please check out my unboxing video. Please feel free to Like, Follow, Comment, and Share. I would also love for you to Subscribe to my YouTube channel.

Thanks for reading! Until next time!

Carla XOXO

Dollar Tree Christmas Tour 2019

Check out the Christmas craft aisle and the Christmas ornament aisle at The Dollar Tree. Come shop with me!

I went to two Dollar Trees last week and they each had some Christmas items out. One Dollar Tree had their Christmas Crafts section freshly stocked, the other Dollar Tree had their Christmas Ornaments out. With the Dollar Tree, things go fairly quickly, so if you see soo,etching you like, you should get it when you see it.

My husband made fun of me when I took a video in the Dollar Tree, ha ha, but it didn’t stop me. I told him I wanted to show everyone what they had. 😊

Below are a couple of items that I liked, and at the very bottom is my Tour video, showing what they have available so far.

Dollar Tree Christmas Tour 2019

A couple of favorite ornaments:

One of the 3 owls I purchased, adorbs!
The cutest little red trucks!
Little sleds in a burlap color. The also had a red burlap color as well.
Little campers, two for a dollar and they are so cute!

Here’s a link to my first Dollar Tree Christmas tour 2019 video. Please stay tuned to my YouTube channel. I will have a Dollar Tree Haul coming soon. I’ve been stock piling and haven’t had a chance to film it yet. It’s from a couple different trips with a medley of holidays, ha ha, some Halloween, Fall, and Christmas. But that’s how you have to roll at The Dollar Tree. You have to get it when you see it! Please feel free to Comment, Follow, Like, and Share. And please Subscribe to my YouTube Channel, I’d love to have you as a subscriber! 😊💗

Until next time!

Carla XOXO

DIY: Slow Cooker BBQ Pulled Chicken Sandwich

Make an easy, hearty, and tasty slow cooker BBQ Pulled Chicken Sandwich that your family will love!

2 out of 3 of my kids are picky eaters. I’ve somehow turned into a short order cook, LOL, I blame myself! They are a couple of meals that I make where all 3 kids will eat it. These BBQ Pulled Chicken sandwiches are one of them. They are so easy to make, it’s one of those “set it and forget it” meals.

Slow cooker BBQ Pulled Chicken Sandwiches are so easy to make!

For this recipe, I use the Instant Pot’s slow cooker function. I had four humongous chicken breasts to cook for this recipe. Here’s what I did:


  • 4 large chicken breasts
  • 1/4 cup of Apple juice or Apple cider
  • A splash of Apple cider vinegar
  • A cup of your favorite BBQ Sauce (I used Corky’s. I also like Sweet Baby Rays.)
  • Sandwich buns, buttered and toasted
  • Salt

Using tongs, place the chicken breasts in the Instant Pot. Add in Apple juice, Apple cider vinegar, and BBQ sauce. Cook on the slow cooker setting from 4 – 6 hours. I cooked mine for 4 hours, 15 minutes.

Take chicken out and place it in a bowl. Shred the chicken with two forks, or use a hand or stand mixer to shred the chicken. Ladle in some sauce from the Instant Pot. How much sauce you use is up to you. I also added a little more of the BBQ sauce since the consistency of the sauce is thicker. Next, I added some pink salt from my salt grinder to taste.

In the meantime, I buttered some sandwich buns and lightly toasted them. Serve the Pulled BBQ chicken on the toasted buns and enjoy!

4 extra large chicken breasts.
1/4 cup of Apple juice or cider.
A splash of Apple cider vinegar.
1 cup of your favorite BBQ sauce.
I used Corky’s, I also love Sweet Baby Ray’s.
Coat the chicken in the sauce.
Select the slow cooker setting from 4 to 6 hours, mine was done at 4 hours.
Set your Instant Pot on Venting.
The chicken is done! Remove and shred in a bowl.
Add some sauce from the pot.
Add a little of the thicker BBQ sauce to coat.
Serve them on buttered, toasted buns and enjoy!

Here’s my how-to video. Please Follow, Like, Comment, and Share. Please also Subscribe to my YouTube Channel.

Thanks for reading! Until next time!

Carla XOXO

DIY: Dollar Tree T-Shirt Pumpkin

This pumpkin craft was so easy to make! There are so many colors of T-shirts for you to choose from, you could custom make your own pumpkins. You could even use multi colors on the same pumpkin, I bet that would be very cute too. You could buy new T-shirts at the Dollar Tree to use, like I did, or you could use old T-shirts from your T-shirt drawer and upcycle them into a cute pumpkin! If you use an old T-shirt, that would basically make this craft cost ONE dollar (minus the jute twine and hot glue). One dollar for a cute T-shirt pumpkin? YES, please! Let’s get started on the craft:

The pumpkin that I used is the carvable one that is available at the Dollar Tree. Using a pumpkin that can be carved makes this project super easy! This would be a great kid craft! The grown-up carves the pumpkin, and cuts the fabric into strips, a the child could do the rest, it is that easy!

Carvable pumpkin from the Dollar Tree.
Cutting the T-shirt into strips.
Carving a small hole in the top of the pumpkin.
Wrapping a strip of fabric around the pumpkin and tucking in at both ends.
Tucking fabric in the hole.
Twisting smaller strips of fabric to wrap around to give the pumpkin texture.
Twisting more pieces of fabric.
I looped the end pieces of the last piece of fabric, to create “leaves “.
Hot gluing jute twine Around the stem of the pumpkin.
I hot glued the stand one to the top of the pumpkin, then I tied some jute twine to create spirals.
The finished T-Shirt Pumpkin! Adorbs!

That’s it! It was so easy! Below is my how to video. Please feel free to Comment, Like, Follow, and Share. Also, I would appreciate if you would subscribe to my YouTube channel. Thanks for joining me today, and I’ll see you next time!

Carla XOXO

DIY: Dollar Tree “Metal” Jack O’Lantern

Create a metallic, rustic looking Jack O’Lantern using some items from the Dollar Tree!

I have been wanting a vintage gas can Jack O’Lantern for quite some time now. I was at an antique store the other day and there was a red vintage gas can. I asked what the price was and it was $40, which I could not afford. So, I decided I would try to replicate a miniature version of one. Plus, my mini version will not smell like gasoline, LOL!

My inspiration… antique gas can jack-o’-lanterns 🎃🧡

I went hunting around the Dollar Tree to see what I could use for my own “gas can” Jack O’Lantern. I found a pet treat jar and a pack of 3 plastic funnels and I was ready to craft!

Plastic pet treat jar from Dollar Tree.
Set of 3 funnels, I used the medium sized one.

I knew I wanted a metal look, so I first started to hand paint the pet treat jar. Then I decided spray paint would be so much easier! I used Rustoleum’s Universal Forged Hammered Antique Pewter spray paint to paint the pet treat jar, lid, and funnel. I love this paint, it’s amazing!

Next, I antiqued all three pieces using Folk Art Home Decor Wax in brown. I brushed the wax on, and then I used a damp paper towel to dab some of the wax off. Does this remind you of a karate kid reference? Wax on! Wax off! Daniel son! Ha ha, I digress. 😂

Folk Art Home Decor Wax in brown.

Then, I decided to add some texture to the funnel so it would appear to be real metal. I took my Elmers glue and I added Elmers glue stripes up and down the funnel. Then I let it dry. Once it was dry, I spray painted it again. If you were going to make this project, I suggest you just add the Elmers glue to the plastic funnel from the get go. I did not do this because I didn’t think of it when I originally started. 😂😂😂 Then, just spray paint the funnel once the Elmer’s Glue is dry. Once my spray paint was dry, I antiqued the funnel again using the Folk Art Home Decor Wax. Then, I set them out to dry.

Blotting Wax off with a damp paper towel.
A close up…
Adding some texture with Elmer’s Glue.
Spray painted and antiqued the Elmer’s Glue striping.

While my jack-o’-lantern pieces were drying, I designed my jack-o’-lantern face in Cricut design space. I cut the face out using matte black Cricut vinyl. I then transferred it to my transfer paper.

Once all of the jack-o’-lantern pieces were dry, I transferred my vinyl jack-o’-lantern face to the jack-o’-lantern. I did not glue the funnel to the top of mine, but you can if you choose to. I think it turned out really cute. And I do like the fact that it is small and easier to display rather than a super huge gas can.

Vinyl transfer made with the Cricut.
Transferring the Jack O’Lantern face.
Peeling back the transfer tape.

I hope you enjoyed this project, I certainly did. It was pretty easy to make, and I love the results! It would be a really cute addition to anyone’s home decor. If you are going to be displaying outside, I would spray it with a clear sealant. Please let me know in the comments what color you would make your jack-o’-lantern. I think a burnt orange would be cool as well, perhaps with a metal base and you lightly dry brush on some burnt orange paint.

The finished Jack O’Lantern! 🎃🎃🎃

Here is my how to video. Please also feel free to Like, Comment, Follow, and Share. And I would really love for you to please subscribe to my YouTube channel to see my future fun projects!

Until next time,

Carla XOXO

DIY: Dollar Tree Haunted House Craft

A fun and easy Halloween haunted house craft using a wood house purchased at The Dollar Tree.

Every time I would shop at the Dollar Tree, I would see shaped wood cut outs and wonder how crafters would use them. One day I saw the haunted house one and knew my kids would love a festive haunted house. All 3 of my kids are really into Halloween right now and spooky things (spooky, but not too spooky, LOL!). So I brought the haunted house cut out home in the hopes to paint it fun and spooky.

I started by painting it with Apple Barrel black paint.

Apple Barrel black paint.

Then I added a pumpkin for each member of my family using orange acrylic paint.

Adding pumpkins.

Then I added some ghosts coming out of the windows using Waverly white chalk paint.

Adding ghosts.

Next, I added some gray scallops to the roof to make them look like roof shingles.

Adding roof shingles.

Then, I used a chalk marker to add some spiderwebs.

Adding spider webs and spiders.

Are used a black paint marker to paint faces on the ghosts.

Putting faces on the ghosts.

Next, I used the same black paint marker to add grooves to the pumpkins.

Adding grooves to the pumpkins.

Then, I added some skulls to the bottom of the Haunted House, using my white chalk paint marker.

Adding some skulls to the bottom of the haunted house.

Next, I glued down the haunted house using Elmers glue. I glued it to a piece of black construction paper.

Gluing down the haunted house.
Gluing the house to black construction paper.
Cutting around the haunted house.

I added spooky eyes in the windows, and a ghost as well.

Adding spooky eyes, and a ghost in the window.

Then I added a small piece of yellow construction paper to the top window of the haunted house.

Adding yellow construction paper to the top window.

To display the haunted house, I used a frame that had a cream colored fabric inside it. I then got a piece of scrapbook card stock in orange buffalo check. I used masking tape to adhere it to the cream colored fabric. Then, I used masking tape again to adhere the haunted house to the card stock. For a finishing touch, I used the black creepy cloth that I purchased at the dollar tree and draped it across the top of the frame. I plan on creating a creepy corner in my home for Halloween, and I think this will make a perfect addition to that little creepy corner.

The finished haunted house! 👻👻🎃🎃

Please see my detailed how-to video below. Please also feel free to Comment, Like, Share, and Follow. Subscribing especially helps my channel. Thank you so much for joining me today and for your continued support of my blog and YouTube channel!

Until next time!

Carla XOXO

DIY: Monster Sized Chocolate Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies

Soft chocolate cookies with a sweet, deliciously creamy peanut butter filling in a couple of easy steps!

My family had vacation plans to go to North Carolina for a week, but the plans were delayed due to a hurricane. With a day delay, I decided to make some treats to take with us while on vacation.

First I made a batch of my Ooey Gooey Chocolate Chip Cookies, but my family ate a lot of them, LOL! So I decided to make some Whoopie pies to take with us. But then after I baked the cookies, I realized they are more like sandwich cookies, not Whoopie pies. I live close to Lancaster County, where they are famous for Whoopie pies, so I could not call these Whoopie pies since they were more cookie like instead of cake like. The chocolate cookies turned out soft and delicious. I made homemade peanut butter icing to put in between the sandwich cookies. The cookies were definitely so “monster sized” that they were large enough to share! Next time I will make them smaller for us to enjoy, but for a bake sale, the huge, monster sized sandwich cookies would look very substantial on a bake sale table!


Here’s how I made them:

  • 1 box of Pillsbury Purely Simple Chocolate Cake and Cupcake Mix
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 2 eggs

Mix together the above wet ingredients on medium speed.

For monster sized cookies, use a large cookie scoop, or ice cream scoop. Spray your cookie scoop and scoop out onto parchment lined cookie sheets. Bake at 350° for 12 to 15 minutes. Allow cookies to cool. While they are cooling, make your filling:

Peanut butter icing:

  • One stick of softened butter
  • One cup of smooth peanut butter
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt
  • A splash of pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups of powdered sugar
  • Whipping cream, or heavy cream, add a teaspoon in at a time until you have A thick, fluffy icing

Mix butter, peanut butter, salt, vanilla extract, and powdered sugar with your hand mixer. Next, add in the whipping cream 1 teaspoon at a time until you have a nice, thick, fluffy, peanut butter icing.

Use your cookie scoop or ice cream scoop teaspoon the icing onto each chocolate cookie. Next, Press another cookie on top of the icing to make your sandwich cookie. Enjoy!


I hope you give these sandwich cookies a try! There are so many different flavors you could make! Chocolate, vanilla, pumpkin, carrot cake, lemon, strawberry, cookies, then you could do tons of different filling flavors, like lemon, strawberry, butter pecan, honey, peanut butter, toffee flavored, chocolate chip, Italian creme cake filling, cannoli filling, basically, the sandwich cookie flavor combinations are endless! Please check out my detailed how-to video. Please also Comment, Like, Share, and Follow. I would love for you to Subscribe to my YouTube Channel as well!

Until next time!

Carla XOXO

Fall Bucket List

I saw some posts on Pinterest that inspired me to make a fall bucket list of my very own. Fall is my FAVORITE season and by the end of fall I have a pumpkin collection and somehow keep bringing more home, ha ha. Last year I carved 5 jack o’lanterns, one for each member of my family, but I can’t help it, it’s my favorite time of year!

The only thing throwing a wrench in the works this year is the weather. Today the weather was in the 90’s here in Pennsylvania, so we really haven’t experienced our traditional fall weather yet. I need cool crisp air to get into the fall mood. Hopefully, the weather will cooperate later this week. Now… onto my fall bucket list.

  • Go pumpkin and apple picking
  • Bake pumpkin muffins
  • Decorate for fall & for Halloween
  • Make pumpkin cake
  • Go on a hayride
  • Drink apple cider and a pumpkin latte
  • Decorate Halloween cupcakes
  • Carve jack o’lanterns
  • Scary movie night & cozy movie night
  • Watch Hocus Pocus for the first time
  • Go on nature walk
  • Play in the leaves
  • Collect acorns and pinecones
  • Make soups and chili
  • Make Halloween cut out cookies
  • Go trick or treating
  • Make caramel popcorn
  • Make apple sauce

Fun fall ideas for my favorite season!

What are some of your favorite fall things to do? Is there anything I am missing on my list? I hope you have a wonderful fall season! I hope you do some fun fall things with the ones that you love.

Carla XOXO