All Souped Up

Because of my deep hatred of winter, I have been cooking a lot of soups. These are 3 recipes I am proud to say are my own. They all started from other recipes but I tweaked each of them. I added things and took things and made them my very own. If you get a chance to make any of these recipes please let me know what you think.

Potato Soup

10-12 medium size potatoes
4 chicken bouillon cubes
4 cups water
2 cans of Campbell’s Cheese Soup
1 can of Fat Free Evaporated Milk
Salt and pepper to taste

Peel and dice potatoes. Bring water, potatoes and chicken bouillon cubes to a boil. Boil potatoes for 15 minutes or until tender. Stir frequently. After potatoes are tender, add cheese soup, evaporated milk, salt and pepper. Bring all ingredients to a boil before serving.

Garnish with bacon and shredded cheese.

Not Yo Momma’s Chicken Stew
My mom will probably cringe when she reads this recipe. I am always craving her chicken stew in the winter but she makes it the old fashion way where you boil a whole chicken. Who has time for that or wants to deal with that? YUCK! I kept telling her that there had to be an easier way. She kept telling me it wouldn’t taste as good so one Sunday this winter I set out to prove her wrong! I will say it is not as good as hers but it is close.

1 lb. chicken breasts or tenderloin
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can of Rotel
1 can green peas
1 can of whole kernel corn
1 large potato
4 chicken bouillon cubes
4 cups water
1 package of small baby carrots
Salt and pepper to taste

Boil chicken and drain. Shred chicken. Dice baby carrots. Peel and dice potato into bite size pieces. Drain all canned items. Bring all items to a boil in a large pot. Stir often. Keep on high heat for one hour or until the potatoes and carrots are tender.

My Winter Romance

Some people think winter is romantic because you can snuggle up by the warm fire and spend more time together. I have found a new kind of winter romance this year. I despise winter. I absolutely hate it. The only thing I like about it is having my husband home for dinner. Other than that, I can’t think of another thing I like about it. Because of my deep hatred of winter there are simple tasks that I dread like pumping gas. G knows this without me even having to tell him so I’ve been catching him checking my car to see if I am low on gas and if it is he goes and fills it up for me. I can’t think of one time this winter when I had to pump my own gas. I also hate going out and defrosting my car. But I haven’t had to worry about that either. G has been taking care of that for me too. He has even been shoveling off the snow for me. We’ve also had a lot of black ice the last few weeks so he has even been escorting me to my car. I could provide so many more examples of his kindness and thoughtfulness this winter and driving me to work when it was really bad. Some people would say he is just a nice guy but I have come to realize in the last couple of weeks this is just one of the many ways he shows his love for me. So until spring, I am going to enjoy my winter romance.

What's Cooking

I’ve been cooking a lot lately. I am always trying to think of something different to fix. I easily get burned out on the same dishes. G on the other hand could eat the same menu every week. I have been cooking since my first semester in college but it feels like I was just cooking the same things over and over again. I have tried some new dishes lately and mastered some classics. For those of you who are like me and always looking for a good recipe I thought I would start sharing some of mine. Hope you enjoy.

This is a Campbell’s Soup Recipe and A New Favorite

• 1 (10.75 ounce) can Campbell's® Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup (You can use regular or 98% Fat Free. I have used both.)
• 1 1/3 cups water
• 3/4 cup uncooked regular long-grain white rice (You may also use brown whole grain rice.)
• 2 cups fresh or frozen vegetables
• 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
• 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
• 1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

1. Stir the soup, water, rice, vegetables and onion powder in a 12 x 8 inch shallow baking dish.
2. Top with chicken. Season chicken as desired. Cover.
3. Bake at 375 degrees F for 40 minutes or until done. Top with cheese and place back in oven for 5 minutes.

• Stir two to three times while baking so rice does not dry out.
• If you use frozen vegetables microwave them for 10 minutes before baking to make them tenderer.

What I Like About This Recipe
• You can use fresh or frozen vegetables. I love any recipe that gives you variety.
• Very little prep time.
• It is the perfect dish to take to someone who is sick or just had a baby.
• Very filling and it is a one dish meal!!!


The Truth

I grew up watching old reruns of I Love Lucky, Dick Van Dyke Show, and many others growing up on Nick at Nite and TV Land. Those were the only two channels I was allowed to watch without an adult in the room. I use to always wonder why Lucky and Ricky or Rob and Laura slept in separate beds. My mom told me it was because in the 1950s and 60s everyone was modest and they were not allowed to show a man and woman lying in bed together. Now that I am married I know the TRUTH. Ricky and Rob must have snored! I know this because I married a snorer! The poor guy has tried everything and I mean everything. He has probably spent over a hundred dollars now on nose strips and sprays. Every night it is the same thing. The minute his head hits the pillow the snores start. I gently rub his arm and say, “hey sweetie”, then he yells, “don’t tell me I am snoring already”. Then he kisses my forehead and goes into the office to sleep. He is considering going to a sleep specialist. He consulted one at the golf course the other day and was told he needed to be fitted for a mouth guard. Let’s pray it works otherwise we are going to be like the couple on Oprah the other day who have had separate bedrooms for the last eight years.

It's Your World

G has this saying that he says to me all the time, “it’s your world”. I realize on print this may sound like a mean thing to say. And I know he almost has the right to say it to me in a mean way because let’s face it. I am a control freak! There I said it, the truth is out.

But he says when he wants to make me happy. For example, when he asks me where I want to go for dinner and when I tell him, he responds, “it’s your world”. For Christmas G got me Jason Aldean’s new cd and to our surprise it has a song called “Passing Through” about a guy who tells the lady in his life that “it’s her world”. I am obsessed with this song right now. I don’t even make a small trip across town without playing it. I love it when a song comes along and you feel like it was written for you. I especially love it when it is a love song and not your typical love song like this one but one that is a little silly and just makes us smile.

“It's your world and I'm just in it, ain't no other way to spin it.
Lucky me, just being there when I get to hold you.
I'm just here to love you girl, it's your world, and I'm just passing through.”

Happy 50th Birthday Mom!

This weekend Greyson and I hosted my mom’s 50th birthday party. Everyone had such a great time. My family has been blessed with amazing friendships. We had 33 guests. In celebration of her birthday, I put together a slideshow of pictures with the help of my mom’s sister, Michelle. She was able to scan some great old pictures of Mom growing up from my grandparents. Mom loved the video! There were some pictures in the slideshow that she had never even seen. For those you of who were unable to attend the party, I hope you enjoy the slideshow.

New Year's Eve Through the Years

New Year's is a special holiday for us. Our second date was at a New Year's Eve Party. We have been ringing in the New Year every year with the same great group of friends ever since. We have so many great memories from our parties. Most of them have been hosted by our friends Trina and Marshall, who got engaged last New Year's.
New Year's 2011
New Year's 2010

New Year's 2009

New Year's 2008
With our friends the Parker's

New Year's 2007

Our first New Year's together in 2006 and our second date
(This was before I had a digital camera so that's why it is so blurry.)

What a Difference a Year Makes

2010 was a year full of new exciting ventures. Last New Year’s Eve I was engaged planning our wedding and leaving my comfortable job for a new one. I feel like it has been a rollercoaster of a year. I’ve had many highs and my lows. The year began with the excitement of wedding planning and a new job, to the low of dealing with my mom’s failing health at the time, and to another high which was getting married. It was also a year of adjustments with my new job and marriage. Through those lows and highs and all the adjustments, my relationship with my Lord and Savior has deepened so much. I am so thankful for each and every experience this year because I believe out of every circumstance this year my faith was tested and was strengthened. There were so many times this year I found myself on my knees because it was the last place yet to fall and realizing I should have been on my knees the entire time. I feel I have grown more in 2010 more than I ever have in any other year. I hope I keep all the lessons I learned close to my heart and will carry them and apply them to all my years to come.

It has also been a year of blogging. I love sharing my heart and my memories with each one of you and I look forward to sharing with you again in 2011. Happy New Year!