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?



A Few Spring Visitors

26/03/2008 § 5 Comments

here are a few pics of some recent animal visitors we’ve had. we can hardly wait for the rest to show up!

                                                   the tiny black-capped chickadee…

                                                          a hungry gray squirrel…

                                                      and curious Mr. Robin

~Happy Birthday To My Sweet Little Daisy!~

12/03/2008 § 2 Comments


Oh my has this last year gone by fast! My little puppy is all grow’d up. (At least she’ll stay small.) She’s a purebred Mini-Daschund. She loves cuddling, snuggling, hugging, kissing, running, barking at her reflection, jumping, taking walks and car rides, playing keep away, playing with the ferrets, people, sleeping in the sun and chewing her raw hides.  We’ve trained her to sit, stay, shake, twirl and fetch. She has brought us hours and hours of fun, laughter and love. She is a great blessing to us all and we are so glad to have her as a part of our family.

~Happy Birthday Sweet Puppy!~

It's A New Year…Already

18/01/2008 § 4 Comments

ok, so i had a great little post and it kinda got lost…and i don’t even remember what i wrote…ok, well, i know i ended it with a little prayer. something like this:

Praying for a great 2008!


traci  🙂 

When did August get here?!

03/08/2007 § 3 Comments

So, I have been a neglectful blogger, I admit it. But if you only knew how busy we’ve been this summer! Not only that, but I’ve been going through a few things and haven’t really known how to articulate them. It’s been about deeper things with the Lord and changing my life and all sorts of really good things.  Also a lot of family drama. Not to mention field trips and finishing up a few things for school and all the decisions about next year and…and…and…I’m sure you get the picture!


Hello and thank you to the sweet people who have stopped by to say hi. It has been encouraging. I haven’t had/taken the time to respond or visit for a long time and I apologize for that. I was seriously considering hanging up my blogging hat. I’m still not quite sure about that one. There are a lot of things to weigh. You guys are just too sweet!


So, I have to go again. Things to do and get ready for. It’s Friday ya know.


One last note:If you guys have the time or think of it, could you please be praying for the people of Minnesota? This last Wednesday a major freeway bridge collapsed into the Mississippi River during rush hour. There were a lot of victims and there are people still missing. There are people who have been located but haven’t been recovered that are still in their cars under the water.


A Google search with Mississippi Bridge collapse or something similar will bring up the story. A local news website that we usually watch that is not as sensationalistic as some others is


It really could have been any one of us here in MN on that bridge at the time. It’s one of the main freeways in the heart of the Twin Cities Metro Area. Growing up here, I’ve driven that stretch of freeway so many times. Asa just recently switched jobs with Target and moved to one of their suburban locations, but he used to drive that way a lot. Pretty much if you are a driver in MN and you need to get to the Cities or out of the Cities for anything/most things, you drive I-35W and cross the Mississippi River on that very bridge.


That day my own sister crossed that bridge 10-15 minutes before it collapsed. She had my neice and 3 of my nephews with her. That’s about half of my entire immediate family right there. A friend of mine’s husband was travelling on it about the same time-just minutes before it collapsed-and I think he was leaving at a different time than usual. My daughters father’s girlfriend’s friend made it mostly to the other side avoiding the river but the part of the bridge her car was on landed on a train car. She was injured, but she survived. That’s how it could have been any one of us or any one we may know.


It seems like you can’t go anywhere without ‘knowing’ someone in Minnesota. Or even know someone who knows someone you know. Most often there are only a few degrees of seperation between people around here. I have met so many people who know someone else I know or went to school with so-and-so or married so-and-so who I used to hang around or is a cousin or aunt/unlce or relative of so-and-so and so on and so forth. (It’s not in-breeding either!) Minnesotans just have this dynamic of comraderie and feeling connected to other Minnesotans and relating to eachother. We are a close knit community here in this way. That’s why this has been a really devastating blow to our entire state. (It’s kinda funny/interesting but even as I write this, I can see some of the Minnesota mindset emerge…)


But God…He has a plan and I have heard so many people talk about spiritual things that normally probably wouldn’t. I’ve seen how Christians have been affected and have shared their faith boldly on the news. This has gotten not only national, but INTERNATIONAL coverage. Asa and I looked online and found countries like Australia, Malaysia, Russia, the UK, Thailand, Iran, New Zealand and Switzerland and so on who have covered this story as front page news. There have been tons of testimonies of miraculous things/circumstances surrounding this catastrophe. May these peoples questions get true answers and may the Lord be glorified!  


I hope this made sense. It’s still a bit surreal all that has transpired the past few days. Thanks for your prayers and I hope to post again soon.



traci  🙂

Let Me Explain…

26/05/2007 § 2 Comments

my absence lately. No, there is too much. Let me sum up…

We have been busy wrapping up school and staying focused with getting schoolwork completed. There is a lot to get through before we start 8th grade this fall and I want to be ready. We have been having a great time plowing through our subjects and we have seen some really great dvd’s to enhance our learning. We are nearing the end and it feels so good!

I have also started a knitting blog because my knitting hobby has gotten bigger and has turned into an opportunity to make a little money on the side. I am having a lot of fun with it and have a few projects going to keep me occupied. Come on over to see what I’ve been up to in that arena!

I have also taken on a 2yr old boy 3-4 days a week for some extra money as well. He is a really good kid and we have fun while he’s here, but another chunk of my time has been going to taking care of him. That makes it hard to get online for any real length of time, especially when there are server issues and login problems. HSB is wonderful, don’t get me wrong. I’m still here aren’t I? This is a great community that I don’t intend on giving up. Life has just gotten a bit busier, that’s all! Where else would I get to meet and read about homeschoolers and their fun adventures in homeschooling?

Well, as you can see there have been a lot of recent developments  that have taken up some big chunks of my time and with summer approaching, which brings camping, cookouts and field trips, I will do my best to keep up with it all!  😉


traci  🙂

My How Time Flys By…

07/05/2007 § 5 Comments

The roller coaster of homeschooling stops for NO ONE! We have been working really hard at staying on task to finish up the school year with a bang. So far…so good! We are finishing up qiute a few subjects and are getting quite a routine down. Of course I would like to see more progress, but I am thankful for how far we’ve come and believe me, it’s borderline miraculous!

Orchestra has been moving along with another recital down and many more practice sessions. Love is making such strides and we are very pleased with her. She is really enjoying herself too, so that in itself is a nice reward.

The MACHE conference went well and I had enough people using my affiliate code when buying Tapestry Of Grace products to be able to buy another year for free and then some! Or, I could just raid they’re bookshelf and get more great titles for our ever growing family library. I’m not sure how I’ll decide, but either way I’m ahead! YAY!

Well, I’m knitting up a couple of Baby Hoodies for Blue Sky Alpacas and need to get back to them. I am really excited about learning to knit. It has been a great adventure so far. It’s well worth the sense of accomplishment you feel when you finish a project. Even the ones that take awhile! 



traci  🙂


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