April 29, 2014

Springtime Veggie Soup

You all know how much I love my crockpot, right? I use it all year long...not just in the cold, cold winter. It works great for lighter, quick springtime meals too. Case in point...this delicious veggie soup. I found the recipe on Pinterest, tweaked it a bit, and it was perfect for our Sunday evening supper. Enjoy!

Springtime Veggie Soup


  1. 1 diced onion
  2. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  3. 3 carrots, sliced and peeled
  4. 1 can diced tomatoes (28 oz.)
  5. 1 can cannellini beans (15 oz. ) drained and rinsed
  6. 3 cups vegetable broth
  7. 3 cups water
  8. 8 oz. ditalini pasta, uncooked
  9. 10 asparagus spears, stems removed and cut into thirds
  10. 1 cup frozen peas
  11. 1 bag fresh spinach (6oz.)
  12. 1/3 cup grated Romano cheese
  13. Salt and Pepper to taste


  1. Put diced onions, garlic, tomatoes, beans, broth and water in crockpot. Spray first with Pam. Cook on Low 4 to 6 hours.
  2. Around 20 minutes before serving, add asparagus, spinach, peas, and uncooked pasta.
  3. Cook on Low 15 minutes. Then stir in cheese.
  4. Season as needed with salt and pepper.
  5. Serve with additional cheese,
  6. Enjoy!

April 26, 2014

My Little Kitchen Favorites

I like to cook. Am I a great cook? An expert? Ummm, no. Not at all. But I do enjoy being in the kitchen making yummy food for my family. One day Madison's friend was over helping me make some pasta. I pulled out one of my favorite little kitchen gadgets, and she asked me what it was, and what it was for. That got me to thinking about what other little kitchen items I use and love.  I thought I would share a few and ask about some of yours. So, here we go...

The one that started it all...my garlic press. If I had to grab one item from my kitchen to take during the Zombie Apocalypse, this may be it. I love my garlic press. If you have never used one, please do. Just peel the garlic, pop it in and press. Fresh garlic is the best. : )

My little liquid measuring cup...a friend of mine gave me one of these years ago. And I fell in love. Before that I was pouring liquid into those little measuring spoons. Not good. Not good at all. This is so much easier, and much more precise. I think. : )

My meat thermometer...I use it every time. Because undercooked meat is just yuck. And dangerous.

My fave...my days of the week tea towels...I love these. They keep me on track and organized. Every night, after I clean up and close the kitchen, I throw the old one in the laundry, and set the next day out. Ahhhh....happiness.

And perhaps my favorite of all...our Take Out Menu folder. Because what cook doesn't love a good take out night every now and then?

So that's it. A few of my favorite little kitchen things. What are some of yours? Do share, wont you? : )

April 24, 2014

Weekend Plans

The last weekend of April? REALLY? How did this entire school year pass so quickly? And how is it May next week? Well, one thing I know to be true...time will pass. We can't stop it. We can't even slow it down. Best to hang on and relish every. single. moment.

Friday here will be quiet. Madison works all day and Steve and Rhett are heading to camp for something known to some as Turkey Hunting. This practice is known to me as packing brown camo clothing and all sorts of random gear, rising at an unheard of hour, and venturing into the woods in search of turkeys. Never mind I can see turkeys in our own backyard on any given day. I think it has more to do with hanging out with the guys, eating way too much food, and playing  all kinds of card games. : ) Regardless, I am happy and thankful for the time Steve and Rhett spend together.

Saturday we have no plans. My mom and Margie may come up to visit. We have Mass in the late afternoon, and as Madison doesn't go into work until later, she can join us. I'm thinking we will have time for some Chinese before dropping her off at work. Where we will have to support her place of business by getting ice cream, right? ; )

Sunday Steve and Rhett will return home. Madison works later in the day, so I will plan dinner before she goes. I am thinking of trying a new recipe I found on Pinterest called Pizza Lasagna Rolls. How good does that sound? Our weather is looking chilly and rainy this weekend, but hopefully we will get some outside time. If not, popcorn and movies is our Plan B.

That is what we will be up to this weekend. I hope yours is cozy and sunny and happy, whatever your plans may be. Thanks for visiting!

The view from my front porch these days...I do love the spring rain. Just doing it's job. Making everything green. : )

And new.

Monday my hubby took Rhett to a ball game...sorry about the fuzzy hubby taken phone shot. ;)

They had a wonderful time with great seats and even greater ball game food. This picture sums up my Rhett perfectly!

Seeing these in my mudroom can only mean one thing...soccer season is starting! I like soccer. It is only six weeks, two practices and one game a week. That's it. Plus it is rec soccer. Meaning...just for fun. Plus the coach is really cute. ; )

Having fun with my leftover Easter ham this week...first up...cheesy scalloped potatoes and ham...

followed by my personal favorite...Ham Pot Pie. Yummmmm.

Leaving you with one more...my girl...who has taken to wearing her big brother's hats around. : )

Happy Weekend!

April 21, 2014

Easter 2014

I hope and pray you all had a blessed and beautiful Easter. We sure did here in our cozy country home. Here are some pictures of our Easter celebrations...

Saturday we hosted a small Easter gathering with my mother, my sister Margie and her husband Chris, Steve's sister Sally, her husband Greg and son Tyler, and a couple of our dear friends. It was our first holiday without my dear father, and without my brother-in-law Greg's father, who passed away suddenly one week after my father passed. I asked Greg to pray the blessing before we ate, and we remembered our sweet fathers in our hearts.
Before our guests arrived, we set our festive Easter table...

with a new Easter tablecloth and four sweet arrangements in colored mason jars filled with fresh flowers and tied with raffia ribbon. After dinner, I invited each family to choose one to take home. : )

Our menu was yummy, and easy as well. We prepared most of the things Friday evening.

We took a few pictures before our guests arrived...Flynn sat perfectly still for her picture with her Peyton...

and had some fun taking pictures with Mommy. : )

My favorite. Ever.

And a super sweet one with Grandma and Aunt Margie. : )

After our guests left, the kids changed into their new Easter jammies...

and set out some carrots strawberries for the Easter Bunny. Because everyone else sets out carrots...and because a certain Mommy forgot to buy carrots.

And then we posed for the traditional night before Easter empty basket picture. : )

Easter morning we awoke bright and early, put on our finest, and headed to Mass...because as much fun as that bunny is, our Risen Lord comes first. : )
My Flynn loved her Easter dress...

and her big pink Easter hair bow.

After we returned from Mass, we changed back into our jammies...because that is how we do it around here...and hunted for baskets... Madison's was filled with beauty products, coffee, and perfume...

Peyton's was filled with true crime books, lotion, and retro television DVDs...

Rhett's was full of video games, movies, and books...

and Flynn's was filled with all things pink, some princess figurines, and her favorite...a "REAL" Handy Dandy Notebook from Blue's Clues.

 After the baskets were found and dumped and reorganized, we had a light breakfast at our Easter table...

we enjoyed some yummy cinnamon rolls...thanks for the help, little Pillsbury Dough Boy...and a big bowl of  delicious fresh fruit...

which I added to counteract the excessive amount of brightly colored festive chocolate!

 After breakfast, we settled in to enjoy a day of playing with new toys, watching new- to- us old shows...(my kids love The Munsters!) and sleeping off a sugar induced coma...me!

Hope your Easter was filled with family, fun, and lots and lots of chocolate, my friends!

April 17, 2014

Weekend Plans... Easter 2014

Easter is here. When Lent begins, Easter Day seems so far away. Somehow it comes quickly, whether we are ready or not. Friday is Good Friday. We will spend a quiet day reflecting and praying The Stations of The Cross together. Friday night we will have a simple fish meal for dinner and spend the night here at home, preparing for our Easter dinner on Saturday.

Years ago, Steve and I made the decision to reserve holidays for our own little family. We spend Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and Easter Day here in our home...just the six of us. We choose keep our children in their own home on these special days, rather than running here and there. It works for us...and I am glad. So...we celebrate with our extended families before or after. We usually host Easter here on Saturday evening. This year, the first holiday without my father, will be a small family gathering. My mom, my sister Margie and her husband Chris, and Steve's sweet sister Sally and her family will be joining us for ham dinner. I am looking forward to a simple, family evening. Afterward, we will set out our carrots and wait for the Easter bunny!

Sunday morning...Easter Sunday...we will attend early Mass together and celebrate the Risen Lord. After that, we will come home and hunt for baskets and surprises. Sunday's meal will be leftover ham and fixings...with some chocolate bunnies, I hope! And the rest of the day will be spent here in our country home together. : )

That is what we have planned for this weekend of Easter, my friends. I hope yours is blessed, and happy, and peaceful...whatever your plans may be. Thanks for visiting!

My little Flynn goes everywhere with me...she rides along when we take Madison to work everyday. : )

She has also become quite the little baker...

Peyton has taught her well!

Homeschool perk! Taking a break from studies to whip up a batch of chocolate chip cookies...because...well, Flynn asked them to. : )

We finally saw some signs of spring this week...this is what I saw early one morning when I took out the puppy...

and this is what I saw later that afternoon. She was soooooo happy! She has been waiting for her swinging days to start forever. : )

Simple fruit salad makes every meal better. : )
We have this in the refrigerator all the time.

One of my very favorite things in the whole wide world...my baby girl...with freshly washed hair in braids. I want to remember these mornings forever...

and these afternoons as well...
baking with all four of my children. Little Flynn rolled out the dough this year, and she was so proud!

We made bunnies...


and carrots. We made crosses too, but I think they were long gone before I snapped theses pictures.
: )
(And if these carrots look red to you...it's because they are! I put way too munch red in and ran out of yellow!)

And I'll leave you with a selfie from last Sunday...
Me and my Rhett.

Happy and Blessed Easter, friends!

April 15, 2014

Time Goes Too Fast Tuesday

Time does indeed go too fast. And here are a few pictures to prove it...

Easter 2011
My Rhett and my Flynn...
Back when my littles all wore matching jammies... : )

and when a little one year old could check out her own Easter basket...

and new sippy cups were all the rage.

Happy Easter!