The weather today was positively pooey and the sort that makes me feel that many DC-area folks are wimps in the climate arena. I'm from Louisiana, for the love, I really, really would prefer to wear tank-tops year round, I fully admit to being rather a winter weeny, but STILL. Would I have delayed school openings today by two hours? I would not. It was souped up rain, folks. Nothing more, nothing less. Not a blizzard, not egregious amounts of hail, not heavy rain, nada. A "wintry mix" which did little beyond wash away what snow we had left. Sigh. I am so hopeful that tomorrow is simply normal in the schedule department: that the boys go to school on time; I pick them up at the proper hour; no one is sick or feigns sickness; no silly delays for rain. Hear, hear! After fetching Oliver from his 1.5 hours at school, we headed to the market for a whole host of items he needed but also for a few chili ingredients I didn't have on hand. To-the-bone chill + gray skies = fabulous day for steaming bowls of slow-cooked chili. And I was feeling rather inspired so wasn't put off by the fact that I don't have a trusty recipe for a red chili or that I wanted it to be meatless. Challenges keep me fresh, and I think tonight's meal will really be good. I toasted some cumin, coriander and a cinnamon stick and then grated those into a saute of onions and garlic. Concurrently, I toasted some dried chiles (from which I'd removed the stems and seeds), rehydrated them and then immersion blendered-them in the soaking liquid. All that went into the pot plus garbanzos, black beans, fire-roasted tomatoes, fresh lime juice, a bit of chili powder and just a bit of unsweetened cocoa powder. Y'all should just smell my kitchen- aMAZing.