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Archive for August, 2007

Crock Pot Recipe for Loaded Potato Soup

In an old edition of Southern Living Magazine, I found this recipe for Loaded Potato Soup using your crock pot. I tried it out and my family loved it. Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients:

4 pounds new potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4 -inch thick slicespotato soup 2

1 small onion, chopped

2 (14-ounce) cans chicken broth

2 teaspoons salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1 pint half-and-half

Toppings: shredded Cheddar cheese, crumbled bacon, green onion slices

Directions:

Layer sliced potatoes in a lightly greased 6-quart slow cooker; top with chopped onion.

Stir together chicken broth, salt, and pepper; pour over potatoes and onion. (Broth will not completely cover potatoes and onion.) Cover and cook on HIGH 3 to 5 hours or until potatoes are tender. Mash mixture with a potato masher; stir in half-and-half. Cover and cook on HIGH 20 more minutes or until mixture is thoroughly heated. Ladle into bowls, and serve with desired toppings.

This recipe makes 8 servings.

Prep Time: 15 minutes; Cook Time: 5 hours, 20 minutes

I cooked my soup on HIGH 4 hours, plus the 20 minutes at the end. I bought the green onion pre-sliced in the produce section of my grocery store. For the crumbled bacon, I bought a package of bacon. Then, just a couple of minutes before serving the soup, I microwaved the bacon and chopped it up. I think the fresh bacon made a big difference. I placed the toppings in small bowls on the table, so everyone could personalize their own bowl of soup. I also served a loaf of fresh crusty french bread for dipping. All said and done, dinner was great and I had leftovers for one more meal.

Looking for more easy recipes? Try my recipe section.

7 comments August 23rd, 2007

A Joke entitled Wedding Anniversary

The other day someone e-mailed me this joke about a wedding anniversary. I thought it was very funny. Judge for yourself.

Jerry was in trouble.

He forgot his wedding anniversary.

His wife was really angry.

She told him “Tomorrow morning, I expect to find a gift in the driveway that goes from 0 to 200 in less than 6 seconds — AND IT BETTER BE THERE!!”

The next morning Jerry got up early and left for work. When his wife woke up, she looked out the window and sure enough there was a box gift-wrapped in the middle of the driveway.

Confused, the wife put on her robe and ran out to the driveway, brought the box back in the house.

She opened it and found a brand new bathroom scale.

Jerry has been missing since Friday.

Thank goodness my anniversary didn’t go like this.

Add comment August 18th, 2007

Two great ways to teach your child how to read

My daughter will be entering Kindergarten this fall. It’s amazing what she already knows. Of course, my husband and I took a few measures to get her off to an academically strong start. We sent our daughter to preschool, where she learned colors, shapes, writing in caps and lower case, counting, addition, subtraction, the sound letters make, and how those sounds come together.

The progress was amazing and I wanted to reinforce it at home. Therefore, I asked my daughter’s teacher what books she would recommend at this stage. Her response was simply “the Bob books.” The Bob Books are written by Bobby Lynn Maslen and John R. Maslen. The books come in 5 sets:

  1. Bob Books First! Beginning Readers
  2. Bob Books Fun! Advancing Beginners
  3. Bob Books Kids! Word Families
  4. Bob Books Pals! Compound Words
  5. Bob Books Wow! Long Vowels

Each set contains between 8 and 12 books with instructions for parents included. I found these books to be a wonderful introduction to reading. For more reviews and information on these books, go to amazon.com.

Another wonderful resource, which I discovered from another teacher, is Starfall.com. This learn-to-read website is offered free as a public service. Primarily designed for first grade, Starfall.com is also useful for pre-kindergarten, kindergarten and second grade. Starfall is perfect for home schooling. Here are the four major categories for learning how to read.

  1. Starfall Learn to ReadABC’s Let’s get ready to read
    Introduction to Letter Sounds
  2. Learn to Read Zac the Rat and other tales
    Early Beginning Reader
  3. It’s Fun to Read
    Intermediate Beginning Reader
  4. I’m Reading
    Beginning Reader to Advanced

Starfall also has a download center with lots of free stuff. This site is definitely worth checking out.

I hope you find these resources as helpful and enjoyable as I did.

5 comments August 12th, 2007

A tip on keeping frogs out of your yard

no toadAbout a week ago, my husband installed chicken wire around the bottom of the entire fence. We did this to keep our little dogs from running around the neighborhood. Well, since then, we have noticed that the chicken wire not only keeps the dogs in the yard, but it also keeps the frogs/toads out of the yard.

hardware clothYou can find the chicken wire (AKA Galvanized Hardware Cloth) for around $20 at your local hardware store. We got ours from Home Depot in the building materials department. It’s also available at Lowe’s in the outdoor garden department. We used the 1/2″ Galvanized Hardware Cloth in the 2′ x 25′ roll. This cloth can be purchased in varying heights and widths.

So, if you have a similar situation, this solution may work for you. If your situation is a little bit different, you may want to check out eHow.com or tree frog hotels for other ideas.

22 comments August 6th, 2007