Spring Break, Sunshine & Girl Scout Cookies

Living in grey Cincinnati can be pretty depressing at times.   It seems like the clouds get sucked into the Ohio Valley and refuse to leave.  This year has been especially brutal with freezing temperatures and weekly snowstorms.  I have been trying to practice my mindfulness, appreciating the beauty around me and reminding myself that the snow only brings the opportunity to cozy up by the fire.  I do have to admit that I have found myself looking forward to this week and it lived up to all of my expectations!!!

My youngest decided to come home from college for spring break after all.  He had planned to go on a mission trip to Virginia to help build homes but a minor illness derailed those plans.  He came home on Friday with laundry in tow:)  It is so great to have him home!!!!  The dogs can hardly contain themselves…their buddy is back who takes them for walks through thick and thin.  Me, I am more of a fair weather girl…

Which is why I was particularly excited about today.  The chores were done yesterday so today was for enjoying.  Here is how the day shaped up….First of all, the sun decided to come out.  Hallelujah!  I love how the sunlight bounces off the table on my sunporch 🙂

Sunlight streaming on sunporch

Sunlight streaming on sunporch

Then, after much anticipation; my friend and her daughter delivered my girl scout cookies that I have been looking forward to for weeks.  I don’t know which was better, the visit or the cookies?!

Kate showing off her favorite girls scout cookies!

The weather was so beautiful that I even got to go for a walk.  (I am behind taking the pic)…

The youngest with the dogs

The youngest with the dogs

Hopefully your day was wonderful too!  After I tackle the girl scout cookies, I will be back to taking my walks….as soon as spring arrives, that is.  Next week Liz Bonis, health reporter for Local 12 news will share her fitness tips.  Be sure to stay tuned!!!!

Good Food Good Family Great Memories

It has been a cold and blustery winter here in Northern Kentucky.  We woke up yesterday to a good six inches of snow on the ground and temperatures in the 20s.

IMG_0172 My sisters and I had set up a date to get together  to begin the process of organizing our family photos.   The snow took the hubby and one kid away from helping me inside so the appetizer I had planned got put on the back burner so to speak.

One of my very favorite things to cook when the weather turns chilly is a big pot of soup.  I learned to cook from the very best cook around, my mom.

My Mom, Marj

My Mom, Marj

I had cooked a big ham, just like mom used to do.  Then made lentil soup from the ham bone.  Made a double batch then froze the other half.  Praise Jesus.   I was able to pull it out of the freezer and heat it up in a jiffy.   How perfect to serve a soup mom used to make on a day when we were going through the family photos.  Things just work out that way sometimes 🙂

What makes this soup Marj’s is the toppings. I promise you will not want to skip them.  They really take this soup up a notch!!  So next time you have spiral ham for your family,  make this super easy soup.  Lentils are one of nature’s powerhouse food sources so make them a part of your healthy diet.

Lentil Soup

  • Servings: 8-10
  • Difficulty: easy
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2 cups finely diced onion

2 teaspoons celery seed

2 tablespoons chopped garlic

pepper to taste

8 cups (2 quarts) chicken or vegetable stock

bone from spiral ham

1 pound green lentils


sour cream

chopped green onion

In large stock pot combine all ingredients except toppings.  Liquid should be just enough to cover your ham bone.   Cover, bring to boil.  Reduce heat to medium-low and continue to cook until lentils are tender and ham bone is falling apart and meat is coming off the bone, stirring occasionally (appox 2 hours).  Remove ham bone and chop meat if necessary.  Garnish soup with tablespoon of sour cream and chopped green onion.  Enjoy!