a few good things

Since we are headed right out of soup weather here in Gilbert, I MUST share this recipe with all of you before we hit 90 degrees. That's right, it is almost officially summer here, and I couldn't be more displeased.  My in-laws are coming from Canada early next week, and I'm sure they are willing the warm weather upon us.  They probably deserve some sunshine, so I'm trying not to complain.

Mia hosted a sweet little dinner party a couple weeks ago for a few couples.  She decided on a simple menu of soup, salads, and bread because we were going all out for dessert.  {The maple, bacon donuts}.  OH WOW.  You really must try this recipe before it's too hot to fire the fry daddy up.  Mia has started a "donut of the month club" to try all the fabulous creations in her new book.  She makes the donuts, and I show up.  It's genius!  I can't wait to see which one she picks to make in March.

I made the soup for the gathering last month. Tomato Bisque, per Mia's request.  It is a winning recipe if I do say so myself.  And really, it's so easy.  Even if you are a beginner, this soup will make you look like you know what you're doing.

Tomato Bisque

5 slices of bacon
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup diced onion
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
1 tsp. dried, crushed thyme
1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes (or less)
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
2 cups whipping cream
2 cups milk

Cook bacon in skillet, remove bacon.  (you aren't going to use the bacon in the soup, you just need the drippings, but I'm sure you will find a good use for those 5 slices!)  Cook garlic in the bacon drippings for 30 seconds.  Add celery, onion, thyme, crushed red pepper flakes, and bay leaf.  Cook and stir over medium heat for 5 minutes or until onion is tender.  Stir in the whole can of tomatoes (with the juice) and tomato paste.  Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low.  Cover and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Stir in milk and cream.  Cook and stir over medium heat for 5 minutes.  Remove from heat, discard bay leaf.  Cool soup slightly.  Process until smooth.  Season with kosher salt and pepper.  Serve with fresh snipped basil and a dollop of sour cream.  (completely optional)

Another good thing I wanted to share are the drawer liners I did on Jaci's little {coral nightstand}

I went the extra mile and painted the insides of the drawers.  I knew I wanted to add a patterned liner, and I found some cute wrapping paper at Hobby Lobby.  G was over one morning and offered to help me put it in.  We decided to use thumbtacks to hold it down on the corners, and since the drawers are pretty wide, we added another one in the middle on the top and bottom, for a total of 6 tacks per drawer.  It worked perfectly, and it's such a nice surprise when you open a drawer now.  Love is in the details, right?

The third (and best) good thing I am sharing today is last weekend's high school dance called Morp.  This is Prom spelled backwards, and it's girls ask guys.  Jaci (my girl) decided to ask Brody (Mia's boy) to the dance.  These kids have known each other for over 10 years now, and practically have a brother/sister type relationship.  They were devastated when at age 14, we had to break the news that sleepovers probably weren't appropriate anymore.  It was a sad day for everyone.

Jaci's adorable cousin Shelly moved to town a few months ago and started right up at her high school.  They are both juniors, and are pretty much living the best dream ever.  I love that they get to see each other everyday, and they were even lucky enough to get one class together in a school with over 5,000 students.  They are the best of friends, and Shelly is one of the happiest girls in the world.  She is brimming with positivity and delight.  We all love when she spends time in our home.

The two girls came up with the brilliant plan of asking Brody and his cousin Colten to the dance, so it would be cousins taking cousins.  Cute.  By some freaky act of nature, both Brody and Colten broke their collarbones within 2 weeks of each other in snowboarding accidents, and so they were both in slings for their big night out.  Not the best timing, but it made for some funny pictures, lots of laughs,  and good memories.  Ahhh, high school.  What a fun time for these kids.

Mia and I made them a nice little lunch and they ate outside on a really beautiful afternoon.  They even snuck in some time with one of the pet chickens, and that is just the start of the crazy things they encountered during their day together.  The stories Jaci came home with were quite entertaining, and just clean, innocent fun.  I'm so thankful that she has good friends.   Knowing that makes it a little bit easier for me to watch her walk out the door each day.

This week your assignments are:  make some bisque, line some drawers, and catch up with a friend!  You will love that you took the time to do each thing.  I sure did.

1 comment:

  1. Maple bacon donuts? I've never made doughnuts at all. (Notice how I included both spellings in there, so I can be cool on both fronts?) Could you girls share the recipes for these delightful concoctions?


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Mia & Jilly

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