Winter Squash Soup

Ah, fall is upon us once again, and when I think about fall, I think about soup. I LOVE soup. I would make it every night except husband says that soup is not a meal. Who knew?

Anyways, in honor of fall I wanted to share this yummy soup that I always like making when the winter squashes start showing up all around.

Here is what I started with……phone sep 14 060 These are from my parents garden I actually only ended up using the biggest green one, so I’ll be using the other two for something else, when inspiration strikes.

First thing you wanna do is peel, and chop your squash into chunks, which is really honestly quite tough. The butternut squash are a little easier to cut up. Make sure you wash your hands well after peeling and chopping because they will be covered with strange sticky slime that you definately don’t want on you. Don’t forget to save the seeds for roasting later.

Next, chop up a big onion, and half a pound of bacon, drop it in a pot turned onto medium heat. You may need some extra oil, if your bacon isn’t too fatty. Let it sizzle away for a good five minutes or so.

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Next, add in your chopped squash. You are looking for about five or six cups of squash. Don’t get yourself worked up about measuring the squash. Get a medium-sized squash and just chop it all up. Then add in two cups of chicken or veggie stock. (Yeah, you see that block of ice, that’s frozen homemade stock). You can used store-bought, but homemade is really super-easy to make.

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Oh, then throw in a cup or so of chopped carrots. (Love the photo; mess included)

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Then add a cup of water to the pot, put on the lid,lower the heat, and walk away for about 25 minutes. Then you will end up with something like this! Really, you just want to make sure the carrots are tender before moving to the next step.

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Now to the fun part. Mash, mash, mash with that good old potato masher. You can probably use one of those immersion blenders, but I don’t have one, so I mash.

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Then, pour in a cup of milk, and add salt, pepper, and nutmeg to taste, and voila!

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Yes, my photography is wonderful! There should probably be a picture of the bowl of soup all served and pretty, but there just isn’t. But anyways, if this at all sounds yummy to you the so-called recipe is below.

Winter Squash Soup

Ingredients:

1 medium winter squash (butternut, acorn, pumpkin etc.)

1 large onion

½ lb. bacon

1 cup diced carrots

2 cups chicken or vegetable stock

1 cup water

1 cup milk

Salt

Pepper

Ground nutmeg

Directions:

  1. Cut and peel the squash
  2. Dice onion and bacon, and place in pot on medium heat. Simmer for 5-10 minutes.
  3. Add in squash, carrots, stock and water. Cover
  4. Set heat to low, and cover for 25 minutes.
  5. Mash it all up.
  6. Add in one cup milk, salt, pepper and nutmeg.
  7. Bring to a boil and then remove from heat.
  8. Stir and serve.

Weekly Wrap-Up (Sept 1st-21st ’14)

Okay yeah so I’ve been a little bit slacking on these update posts. But here is a little bit of what we have been up to the last few weeks…..

Okay so first, the trip to the beach. We hadn’t been there all summer. So we just had to get there. It was windy and chilly, but amazing none the less, and the kids loved it anyways. Actually, the water was super warm.

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We spent some end of summer time here………Nice feet, I know!.sept14 003

sept14 001 sept14 002phone sep 14 003Reading as usual…………Yeah, I didn’t snap a pick of all the books we’ve been reading together the past few weeks, sorry bout that. However, I did catch the boy reading a non-fiction book on the floor all on his own (gasp!) Non-fiction! Unbelievable.

The kids have been going to the park down the street almost daily to collect black walnuts(seen below), I’m tempted to stop spending so much money on nuts and just pick them from the trees….J/K We’ll save them for the squirrels. We also put together our favorite USA puzzle.

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Oh, we went to a picnic with lots of yummy food and fun stuff…..The kids had a blast, even when it started pouring and we waited in line for 40 minutes for some balloon animals, they were still smiling!

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Let’s see….at the park, bible alphabet flashcards, some pretty flowers, Dad’s fish pond

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Puppet show at the library, caterpillar, pogo-sticking, and dead bat (kids insisted that a picture be taken)

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And last but not least…LEGO creations of course!

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And…that’s a wrap. Crying, fighting, name-calling, whining, and melt-downs were experienced by all, but pictures not included…..Thanks for reading!

Jodie

Another post from those weird homeschoolers

Okay, now this might sound a little bit strange but with public school in full swing around here, I’ve kind of gone into a bit of hiding during school hours. Trying not to go to the store, or the park, or walk down the street even until after 3pm.

Are you wondering why? Well, I would love to say that I live out on the farm, in the woods, out in the fields. But, I don’t. I live in the suburbs, somewhere between city and freedom, nature and well; not nature, with not another homeschooling family in sight. I’m not saying they’re not around, but they are definately not on my block.

They kind of look at you funny when they notice you’re not waiting at the bus stop. Until one day they work up the nerve to ask you “Uh, aren’t your kids supposed to be in school?”

“Oh, we homeschool.” You smile and retreat back to your den (house).

But, lately I’ve been thinking, aren’t you the weird one? (Of course I didn’t say this)Since when is it weird to have children home with their mother? Isn’t this what people have been doing for thousands of years? Until randomly a hundred or so years ago they decided this was no longer ideal. When did it become so natural to raise your child for five years and then ship them off to the masses.

I just simply don’t understand it. Why is it weird to want to spend time with your children. Learn and grow with them each day. Cherish precious childhood with them. Teach them about life, and live it with them. I am not saying homeschooling is easy. I am not saying everyday is wonderful and problem free. But you know what, it’s worth it anyway.

Now I realize that not everyone can homeschool, there are people out there who are literally unable to do it. But, for the rest of us, open your eyes and embrace it. No, I’m not telling you what to do. But honestly, children are a precious gift from God, somehow modern society has forgotten this.

Embrace life.

Embrace motherhood.

And for the record….I am not the weird one.

A Reflection

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So with three weeks of school under our belts, I’ve felt a calling to reassess. The first week went great, we accomplished everything on the list (as if that’s the most important thing right?) Overall I felt good, good about what we accomplished, good about our schedule

The second week went by, and we completed MOST of what we had planned. We took a short day because I wasn’t feeling up to afternoon work, and another day we got a surprise visit from a cousin and tossed schoolwork out the door. At the end of the week I said to myself “Hey, not every week can be perfect right?”

Then week three came and it really hit me. Feet were dragging in the morning. The kids wanted to play and not “start school”. Why isn’t school more like play in my home? I had to drag them to do their math and handwriting. I found myself a bit more tense and quite snappy frankly, and unhappy about how I was dealing with it. Morning Meeting had turned into Afternoon Sit Down and Listen or else…

We cut the week short because my kids had plans on Saturday to go on a trip with their grandparents. And you know what? I looked through my pictures for the week and I found that they were pretty scarce. I even forgot to snap a picture of the books we had read. I was feeling quite drained and lost. Already? Already

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I had prayed for the Lord to lead me in this homeschooling thing. But was I really letting him? The truth is I haven’t been listening to him at all. I haven’t even been looking for his answers. Ouch. All I have been doing is what I think I’m supposed to be doing. Because, that’s what all these other great homeschooling mama’s are doing. And I must admit, they truly are inspiring. 

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So, I took a deep breath. And went to the beach. What? Yes, the beautiful, amazing, incredible beach and immense, unfathomable ocean God has created. It was so windy, and quite chilly, certainly not a perfect beach day, but it was still incredible. I sat in the sand, ran in the water, and breathed in the sweet, salty air. God is so amazing. My children are amazing. The ability to homeschool them is amazing.

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So, I sit here today, cup of coffee in hand, kids sleeping in way too late, but feeling refreshed in God’s beauty none-the-less. I don’t know what I will do today, stick to the plan? Throw everything out and begin again? Try something new?  I certainly don’t have the answer, but there is someone who does, and this week, in my life, and my home and my family I can’t let that be forgotten.

J.

Homeschool Weekly WrapUP Week #2

Week #2 – August 24th – August 31st

 We had adventures in fishing and creek hopping…..

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Visited cousins, and lost a tooth…..

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And in honor of the first day of public school round these parts, we decided to go miniature golfing…….

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eat icecream, and see farm animals! (All I got was the cow because my camera died…)

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Oh, we did some academics I promise……

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We labeled different types of leaves, and read lots of of books…..

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And lots of other fun stuff….

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We also made our own bread and canned tomatoes…………

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Home-Sweet-Homeschool

God Bless.

J.

Homeschool Weekly WrapUP Week #1

Okay, so I am a week behind on this but hey…here goes anyways.

Week #1 – August 18th-23rd

We started off our first week of school with a trip to the zoo…..

jodies phone august 2014 011 jodies phone august 2014 023 jodies phone august 2014 030 jodies phone august 2014 015The gorilla was my favorite. He dug through all the straw in his cage looking for carrots to eat. So funny! The kids liked the aardvarks and the “orange” flamingos. Yes, they really were orange.

The next day, we got to work…..

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We became archaeologists and dug for clues……….

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We did our chores………

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We read books…

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We were supposed to collect worms, but after three days all we had were two tiny babies. C’mon rain!….

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We wrote……

 

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We sang our continents and oceans….

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We played at the park…..I mean… had recess!

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We ended the week with a trip to the farmers market, where the kids made pencil cases…..

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And last but not least are nifty little mosaic fish…..

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Home – Sweet – Homeschool.

God Bless.

J.