Hello my SMF family! I have missed you dearly, even though I have lurked a couple of times here and there the only time I have been in front of a computer I have had to use it to try to find a job, then it broke, then it got fixed, now the x key and left ctrl key doesn't work so I have to copy and past x's, you wouldn't realize how many times you use x until you can't use it anymore. My life has been a pretty bad ride for the last couple of months (and still is really, there is barely getting by, then broke, and whatever word that is below broke and above homeless is where I am) but at least I can say I am alive, in good health (I guess), and trying to maintain a positive attitude when I can't seem to have anything go my way (except cooking, duh ). Enough of my self pity party. You guys and gals have been putting out some great posts by the way. I am really digging some of the things I have seen since I have been inactive and I can't wait to try some of those recipes. The throw-down entries look amazing also, too bad I missed out on that one, I hope we have more throw-downs soon so I can show you guys how it's done (yeah right). I will try to catch up on the smokes and such I have done in my absence. We can at least start with this.... MMMMMM Cheeseburgers Mmmmmmmm, oh and green bean fries, my wife's favorite (not pictured- lemon garlic aioli for green bean dipping) Yes there was a top bun, the other picture just looks much better. Oh yeah I got a new phone since I last posted so the pictures will be much better then they used to be. Still no replacement to the broken camera but this will do. I also had another ICS Chili cookoff (Maryland State Chili Cookoff) that I competed in. I won People's Choice and placed 9th out of 32 which is better then my last cookoff (13th). I would have placed much higher but my meat broke down 20 mins before turn in (first time using tri tip instead of chuck). I have made it again since and now I have it down to the perfect pot in 2 hours so I will say it now......I WILL PLACE TOP 3 NEXT COOKOFF GUARANTEED!!! Remember this was only my 2nd ICS cookoff too. For my chili name I had a drunken conversation with a friend trying to come up with names and he had an ashtray in his hand and said ashtray chili while putting out a cigarette, I said haha watch your butt as in cigarette butt but also after you eat the chili. We had this great marketing idea of shirts and serving in ashtrays but in the end $$ wasn't there so I just made a shirt for myself. I know it sounds gross but that's what happens when you drink too much and try to be creative with a dumb friend. I am working on a logo to use for all of the cooking adventures I do so this will all change again. Also a buddy of mine asked me to create a spinach dip recipe to put on his restaurants menu to replace another dip that wasn't doing well. I know ohh, ahh, spinach dip, amazing......but I have to say, I have never tried to make it before, I just bought the TGIF frozen stuff, so I took this as a challenge. After 4 tries I came up with the most amazing spinach and artichoke dip I have ever eaten, so it's on the menu now and he named it after me. Kind of cool since I have never had my name on a menu, I have sold recipes before but they never put my name on them just $ in my pocket. Sorry I can't share the recipe though, just the picture of the menu. It's an Irish Pub by the way. Well that's enough for me today, I have basically 3 days of charity event stuff I have to deal with then I will try and catch up on all of those smokes I have done and read all of the posts you all have done. Thanks for listening! Glad to be back!