Soup’s On

09/09/2010 § 2 Comments

NOT Campbell’s, this is my first ever Beef Stew from last year.

Growing up we ate soup. Chicken noodle (w/saltines), tomato (w/grilled cheese), vegetable beef (w/club or saltine crackers)…but they all came in a can, that bore a distinct red and white label with a gold seal and the words ‘Campbell’s condensed soup’ elegantly displayed. We would even go around the house singing the jingle, “Mmmmm, mmmmmm, good!”. Just add a can of water and there’s your meal. With 6 hungry, growing kids, one small can wasn’t enough, but it was still cheaper to get a few cans of soup and less time consuming than making homemade. No one had time for that in the 70’s/80’s, not with all the Miami Vice watching, shoulder pad adjusting, double-income-so-we-can-have-toys working, Atari-thumb acquiring, mix tape making, fast food eating, hair teasing and crimping, MTV video lip-syncing, Star Wars light-saber dueling we needed to accomplish. Grab a prepackaged box, stick it in the microwave and you were good to go.

So, that’s what I grew up with, in a nutshell of sorts. If you can’t nuke it, excuse me, microwave it, or make it in less that 10 minutes, you’re wasting time. Label reading? What’s that? Serving size? Isn’t it one package per person per meal? Preservatives? Micro waves are safe otherwise ‘they’ wouldn’t have let them be sold…right? Stop confusing me with the facts! Ahhhhhhhhh!

Simmering my first batch of Tomato Soup.

Now, lest you think I’m a food nazi, I want to clarify. If you have or use a microwave, I’ll still love you. If you buy prepackaged food and the fast food drive-thru clerks know you by name, I’ll still love you. Even if you frequently consume mass quantities of preservatives and like it, I’ll still love you. There’s always room for grace. This is my personal perspective and the road I am traveling, feel free to join in any capacity, you are more than welcome!

The beginnings of my Potato Soup. Shhhh…it has a secret ingredient.

Now where were we? Ah yes, soup. These past few years of having a house and a husband have really changed me. For the better (right honey? Honey?). I have learned so much and have grown so much I barely recognize myself. It’s as though I have been slowly emerging out of a cocoon in order to become the child of God I was always meant to be. It’s been hard. It’s been tiring. It’s been bittersweet. It’s been real. It’s been good.

I consider part of that role to be feeding my family and actually, truth be told, this is one of my most favorite parts! I feel like I am loving my family when I take the time to prepare hearty, healthy meals for them. It’s my gift of love to them. It’s the least I can do for them living with me year-round. Besides, it’s in my genetic make-up to help, provide and take care of those I love. They are my gifts. My blessings. Anything less than my all and my best isn’t good enough for them.

When I first started making soup I was completely clueless and actually put it off for a very long time. I was afraid to mess it up. I was afraid it would be more than I could handle and if it wasn’t going to turn out like the best soup that was ever created since the dawn of time and beginning of making soup, well, why bother? (Did mention I’m a recovering perfectionist?)

Then, one day, with my nose shoved in a cookbook (a rather frequent occurrence) and all the self-talk and courage I could possibly find to muster, I tried. And you know what? IT WORKED. Yep, totally. It seriously worked. I made chicken noodle soup from my own homemade stock, oh and by ‘worked’ I mean, it was delicious, edible even. Here’s the proof:

Meet my first ever from scratch Chicken Noodle Soup!

Here it is in my pretty pink bowl.

And here it is with some yummy organic ginger peach tea and a sleeve of saltines, naturally.

That was a great day for me. A momentous, milestone of an occasion. Nervously standing over the hot stove, chopping all of the celery, carrots and onions into uniform, bite-size chunks, measuring just the right amount of sage rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper, clinging to my cookbook and reading it over and over again to make sure each step was painstakingly taken in precisely the exact manner the author intended…(recovery takes awhile) all for the love of my family. *happy sigh*

So do you make your own soup? Thinking about trying it out? Happy sticking with the canned variety? What are your favorites? Any fun memories you’d like to share that come to mind?

xoxo

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Tomatoe Staking my 14yo?

06/09/2007 § 9 Comments

ok, so you’d think that by this age i wouldn’t need to do a whole lot in the area of training my daughter, let alone keeping her so close. well, yes…and no. you see, parenting skills have i not of my own, but parenting skills must i learn and make them my own.

 

when i had my daughter at the tender, naive age of 19, i didn’t know what to do or what i was going to do. so, i prayed, went to a church, found the Lord and started a journey toward becoming who Christ intended me to be. it’s only been the last few years that i have even really begun to know and understand who that is. i’ve spent many years climbing to the top of the rubble heap that was my life in order to ‘find myself’. i have by no means arrived per se, but i have a much clearer picture to look at and a reference point that is not so clouded. i did not grow up in the way, and it was never modeled for me, of parenting the way God intended–even with the mistakes. so my only references needed to be erased and replaced with those of the Lord and His word and not the ways of man or the world. not as easy to do as it is to say by any stretch of the imagination. i have struggled for many years trying to do what’s right in raising my daughter and even though i wish there were ‘do-over’s’ i still press on, trying not to look back and regret.

 

many prayers and petitions has the Lord heard me cry from the depths of my heart for this child (and me). and because God is Who He says He is, i am who i am today. she is who she is today. yes, there’s room for more, much more, but I thank the Lord for what He has done for us thus far. He is so worthy of my most humblest praise. for without Him, we would be as the grass…gone. God be praised!

 

traci

To Trust, Honor and Obey

02/11/2006 § 1 Comment

Well, a lot has been going on. I worked my last scheduled shift this Monday and it went well. Most everybody has expressed their shock and disappointment of my leaving. I was actually quite surprised w/all of the catty-ness that was going on. I will still pick up hours here and there on an 'if you need me, call me' type of basis. That also allows me to visit my clients and keep a relationship w/them-the one reason I was staying on so long other than financially needing to. Looking back, this has been very good for us. Already the Lord has provided income and ways to get income by helping others. It's been a really great transition too. I'm happy, Love's happy and my husband is happy and he even apologized for not trusting sooner (I'm not sure he needed to, but I gladly forgave him!). I apologized for not being more peaceful in my trusting his timing (I wasn't bouncing off the walls, but I wasn't exactly sitting quietly either!). I think we all learned something out of this. I learned to trust my husband and he learned to trust the Lord, and me. That, is worth the temporary discomfort. Lovebug is also happy about it and has come to a point where she has begged me to NOT send her back to public school! (I'll elaborate on that next time.) Peace has been restored, we have been more productive in our house cleaning efforts and have accomplished tons in that department. Our house is becoming a home and our family is finding its identity.

 

I have taken on a few babysitting roles and I started tutoring a student at the local private Christian school.House cleaning is also showing a promising response. I'm sure there are other things on the horizon as well. It's so good to be in the home though!

 

We are now able to be involved in a care group, now that I don't have to always be at work. I have also accepted a role on our Publications committee at church and we are getting 'plugged into' our church more than ever now because of my newly found availablility. We are on the worship team at our church and can now do more such as lead and be at meetings, conferences and community events. It has been so sweet. We are also able to have more fellowship w/friends and it is just all around a good thing!

Now if we could just get pregnant… 🙂

 

Hope all is well with you and yours,

Many Blesings,

Traci 🙂

It's Friday-date night!

24/02/2006 § 3 Comments

 

So, tonight we are bringing Kayla to my sister’s to spend the night. What will my DH and I be doing you may ask? We will be having dinner at a nice hotel and then spending the night! Kind of like a honeymoon revisited. We’ll stay up late talking and MAYBE watching some cable. It’s a slim chance but maybe we’ll find a decently clean movie on. We don’t watch a whole lot of tv at home so needless to say we don’t have cable. Usually there’s not much on anyway. Regardless, we actually have OTHER plans. I am just in awe of how God set up marriage. I’m kind of glad I didn’t know how wonderful it would actually be, otherwise I would have sabotaged it years ago! Of course I had my suspicions and daydreams… For how worried I was before the wedding, I feel so silly to think about it now. Asa and I are doing quite well I think. I must say, our secret for success is completely wrapped up in our personal relationship with Jesus. When we tend to that regularly, we can only reap the benefits when we come together in Christ. I am soooooo looking forward to the days, weeks and years to come! Especially if this is just a small taste of what is to come! I would like the WHOLE order please. That scripture about tasting and seeing that the Lord is good is becoming alive to us. Asa’s desire is to be the best husband and father and mine is to be the best wife and mother. As long as we draw on the Lord for all we need in order to accomplish those goals, success is unavoidable! Thank you, thank you my sweet Jesus for Who you are and what You’ve changed our lives into! We want more and more of You. Help us to keep pressing on and into You. May You receive all the glory and honour and praise for all You’ve done for us, to us, with us, in us, through us and so on! You truly have been our Salvation.

Ahhhh, my day off!

21/02/2006 § 1 Comment

 

So, Tuesdays are my day off and I really like them. I get to sleep in(a little) and take my time(sort of). It’s such a blessing that Kayla is 12 and somewhat of a selfstarter. We still need to write out a schedule, but she at least knows what needs to be done and tries to do that–before I get out of bed. Now, don’t get me wrong, she sleeps in a bit too. I’m usually gone when she wakes up so it makes me feel like I’m not leaving her alone as long, you know, because she’s unconscious. I have been struggling a lot w/that lately. I know there is grace because I sort of have to work right now, but I have been increasingly sad that I have to leave her alone to wake up by herself and to fend for herself. She’s is perfectly capable, but we miss that precious time in the morning making breakfast memories and snuggling together. Maybe I need it more than she does.(Probably) If you think of it, could you join your prayers w/mine that my DH Asa would have a peace about making this step? He is a financial man and money and numbers are important to him. (A very good thing.) It can be a real struggle for him sometimes because he takes his charge of being the provider for his family very seriously. We’ve only been married since January so it hasn’t been long enough to really see how our budget is going to unfold, so I can understand his caution. However, my personality is a wee bit different. I would just as soon follow the leading of my heart and THEN figure out the repercussions as they come–if they come. That’s why we’re married. We need the balance the other one supplies to us. Soooo, that is NOT what I had intended to write about at all! It feels good getting it out though. I tend to keep things like that inside. I have actually been feeling that since a month or so before the wedding. I have only recently mentioned it to my DH. THAT was hard. I want to honor him so much and I don’t want to come off as questioning his decisions. HE asked me if there was anything I had on my mind–of course I took him up on that invitation! That was kind of weird. He was never like that when we were courting. Now, he wants to be more involved in my life–like he’s my husband or something! How splendidly wonderful! Well, the day is moving on w/out me and I’m in need of a snack. (Among other things) Have a very good day and may the Lord Jesus richly bless you above all that you could ever imagine, hope or think! Loving Him more and more through His love for me–Traci 🙂

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