Kale & Potato Soup

Yum! I love this soup.
A few months ago, our good friends had us over for dinner and served this delicious soup.
I had never tried kale before and was immediately hooked.
Kale is incredibly nutritious and an excellent source of antioxidant vitamins A, C, and K.
This soup is easy to make, very affordable, fresh and (did i mention) DELICIOUS.

So, here is my first recipe of many to share with you!

Kale and Potato Soup
Adapted from recipe at Passionate Homemaking

What you'll need:

1/2 bacon
1/2 lb chicken Italian sausage or any sausage of your choice
4-6 potatoes, diced
1 onion, chopped
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
6 cups chicken stock (or water added to 4-5 cups stock)
2 cups whole milk, half & half, or cream (I use 1% milk mixed with cream)
5-6 leaves of kale, chopped
salt and pepper, to taste

Before we start, I have a few notes:
- the ingredients in the picture don't exactly match the original recipe I am providing because I cut the recipe in half, which is enough for two with lots of left overs. The original serves 6-8.
- bacon! bacon is a great addition to this soup. this was my first time not using bacon, so it is not pictured but I will give cooking instructions as if it is left in because it's great in this soup.
- sausage- original recipe calls for fresh sausage you can crumble while you cook. tonight, i went with Aidells all-natural smoked chicken sausage, so i just sliced and tossed them in.

Alright, back to cookin'

Cook the bacon however you like to. Cool, chop, set aside for later.
I like to bake mine:
- place bacon strips on a baking sheet lined with tinfoil. bake in non-preheated oven at 400F. take bacon out at desired crispness... 15-20 mins.

Meanwhile, in a large pot, cook onions, sausage, and garlic until sausage is browned. You can use the bacon grease, oil, or like I did tonight, butter (shame on me, i know.. i am out of olive oil)

Add potatoes* and stock and bring to a boil.
*I usually use yukon spuds, but tonight went with red.
Once boiling, reduce heat and simmer for about 20 mins, until the potatoes are tender.

Add bacon, kale and milk. Cook for about 5-10 mins.
Season to taste with salt and pepper (and sometimes I add a little garlic powder)
It may look like a lot of kale at first but it cooks down to look something like this...

Bon Appetit!


First Trimester

your papa and i sat on the bedroom floor, pregnancy test upside down till the three minutes had passed. mama was full of butterflies, and then full of smiles when she turned it over...
"you knew..." papa says, smiling that smile of his.
yes, mama knew. papa knew too.
we prayed for you little one. and you came.

we told your grandmas and grandpas by putting a sesame seed in a bowl for dessert.
"this is the size of your grandchild"
you were so little then.

for the first few weeks, you woke mama up early each morning for a snack.
"please, mama, another blueberry bar!"
you were very sweet though and always asked kindly and it didn't last too long.
then you moved onto ketchup... on anything.
your aunty cass bought us a big bag of ketchup chips from Canada. you ate those up quick!

at eleven weeks, we hear your lovely heart beating for the first time.
gentle like breath on a cold morning,
but fierce like tiny horses galloping wildly.

in november, mama starts to show-
you must be growing well, my darling.
in fact, your growing inside of me is so lovely and mysterious-
mama will easily start crying these days.
poor papa found mama crying on the floor in the closet with a bowl of cereal.
"are you okay?" asks papa
"i choked on a bit of cereal" says mama

a few days before Christmas, mama feels you moving and swimming around!
what a gift! i love you my sweet. you and papa are the greatest christmas gift.
i couldn't ask for more.



Our Darling

Please, allow me to introduce you to our beautiful baby girl...

I suppose you can say my hiatus from Kubo&Co. was primarily due to the fact that this little angel has been growing inside me. So many changes and wonderful discoveries in the last 20 weeks. I hope to share these things with you shortly.
For now, here is her first photograph.

One year ago today, I awkwardly hugged this baby girl's father for the first time.
Now, I cannot quite remember life before falling asleep beside him each night.
He is my shield. My gift.
And now, here is another gift!
Praise God from whom all blessings flow!
He is the Great Giver and we thank Him and give Him all glory.