Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Chicken Vegetable Noodle Soup

Blog, schmog. I wish I had more time for my computer. I have such funny stories to share and I am behind on reading my favorite sites. Of course, the internet will be here when my children are grown, so I will try to stay focused on the right things. :-)

I love this soup. It is so simple and easy, as well as yummy and nutritious. It's also light enough for spring and summer weather! I found the original recipe on, but I've adapted it to add more vegetables and whole wheat noodles. I decided to try the soup because I have trouble getting Hope and Elizabeth to eat vegetables. I thought if Elizabeth helped me make Dora's recipe, she would be eager to try it.

Her response: I want to help make it, but I'm not going to eat it. Okay?

Meal times present something of a battle these days. Regardless, the soup is really good!

Chicken Vegetable Noodle Soup

1 cup small noodles ( I like whole wheat macaroni. It’s easier for the little ones to eat.)
1 tsp olive oil
2-3 carrots, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
1-2 small onions
2 ribs celery
Frozen green beans (as much as you like… I used about half of a 16 oz bag.)
1 box low-sodium chicken broth (more broth or water, if desired)
1-2 tsp Mrs. Dash seasoning (or ½ - 1 tsp thyme…or your favorite seasoning)
2 cups shredded, cooked chicken (use leftover!)
salt and pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a stock pot. Add the carrots, onion, and celery. Stir occasionally, cooking until just tender. Add the broth, green beans, and seasoning. Bring to a boil and simmer for ten minutes. While the soup simmers, cook the pasta.

Add the noodles and chicken and return to a boil. Adjust seasoning. Ladle into bowls and serve. Yummy!

As with most soups, amounts can be adjusted to suit individual tastes. The seasoning can also be adjusted. I recently bought Mrs. Dash for another recipe and thought it might be good in this. It was tasty and different.


Tuesday, March 3, 2009


This quiche makes a quick and easy Sunday brunch. I often prepare the mixture before church, then refrigerate. I put it in the oven when we get home, and it's done by the time clothes are changed and put away, and the table is set.

The recipe I started with called for egg substitute, but I use the real thing. Eggs are so tasty, versatile, and nutritious, with only about 75 calories each. (I know there are special medical circumstances that call for using the substitutes, which work fine in this dish.)

The recipe:

(Our last name) Quiche

1 onion
5 slices Canadian Bacon

Sauté together in a bit of water until onions are soft and brown.

Add 1 (small) bag of frozen broccoli to skillet with 2 TBSP water. Cover and cook 4-5 minutes.

Uncover. Add 4 tbsp all purpose flour. Stir. (You can skip the flour if you wish. I sometimes forget it, and the quiche still has a nice texture.)

Pour into a sprayed 9 x 13 pan. Combine 8 eggs and 1 ½ cups of skim milk. (More eggs and less milk, if desired.) Add ½ cup parmesan cheese. Salt and pepper to taste.. Pour egg mixture over broccoli mixture.

(Cover and refrigerate for a few hours, if necessary.)

Bake at 350 for 35 minutes or until knife comes out clean.

Serve with fresh fruit and vegetables (carrots, spinach, cucumbers, tomatoes, strawberries, grapes, pears... ).

Yield: 8 servings. About 5 points per serving.


Have a fabulous day!


Sunday, March 1, 2009

Mamma Mia

A few months ago, I got an email from my friend Karen, with whom I used to teach. She was ordering tickets to see the musical Mamma Mia, and she wanted to know if I would like to join her and some other gals for a ladies' day out. Theater tickets do not normally fit into our feed-seven-people-on-one-small-income budget, but my husband said, "I want you to go. You deserve it."

It makes picking up his socks and underwear so much easier when he says things like that. And when he brings me flowers, which he does regularly. And when he does all the other sweet things he does for me.

Yesterday was the big day. I cannot tell you how much I was looking forward to this outing. We had lunch at a nice restaurant, then walked across the street to the Lexington Opera House, which is very fancy-schmancy, especially in the eyes of this small-town girl. It's simply lovely, and this was only my second visit. The first time, I took the kids to a children's production.

Despite the fact that we ordered tickets months ago, our seats were on the back row, which is WAY up high. The view was still spectacular, though. It was so nice.

I knew Mamma Mia was a big Broadway hit and that there was a movie, but I was not familiar with the plot line. I knew it used songs from ABBA, but had no idea how they fit into the show. I was not prepared to have so much fun!

The plot centers around a young girl about to marry who wants her dad to walk her down the aisle. The problem is that she doesn't know who he is. She finds a diary, finds the three gentlemen who could be the one, and invites them all to the wedding. Thus the fun begins.

The music was fabulous. I am not necessarily an ABBA fan, but it was hard not to enjoy these songs. The costumes. Oh my goodness, they were incredible. Lots of flash, lots of color, lots of 1970s. There was humor, too, and some PG scenes. I wouldn't take my children to the show, but it was good fun nevertheless. There were lots of scenes with young guys sans their shirts, and not a lot of skin from the ladies (short skirts and tank tops, but nothing sleezy), which struck me as odd. (Not that I think there should be scantily clad women running around on stage. It just seemed a bit out of place to see the fellas coming in half naked.) Then it occurred to me that the audience would be filled with mostly women. That was eye candy, or what Mark calls beefcake! Funny. I'm so slow to catch on. It didn't make my toes tingle, but I'm an odd ball.

The best part of the show actually came after the actors took their bows at the end. Before the applause was over, they went back into a long medley of songs from the performance. It was so fun and energetic. I think everyone left the theater humming their favorite tune and dancing a bit. We definitely got our money's worth. If you get the chance, go see the show. I think I'll look for the movie now. I hear Meryl Streep gives a wonderful performace.

(DISCLAIMER: I found this video on youtube. I did not take video of the performance I saw. I listened and obeyed when the director said no recording devices were permitted. The set on this video is what the set looked like yesterday, but the costumes I saw were a bit flashier.)

Blessings (and songs...),