Tag Archives: planning

Pinterest Crockpot Soup Recipe

Monday’s Menu ~ Pinterest Recipe for Crockpot Pasta e Fagioli Soup

One of my goals for 2014 was to learn how to make homemade soups. I chose a few I’d like to learn in an previous post. Yesterday I made a recipe (that wasn’t even on my list) that I found on Pinterest.

My husband and I enjoy going out to eat. We like simple, casual food ~ homey, comfort food, nothing too fancy or gourmet. Olive Garden is one of our favorite places to go.

I was looking for crockpot recipes on Pinterest when I found this one. I made a couple of changes, but only because I didn’t have a couple of the ingredients on hand. I used Italian Seasoning in place of the basil and thyme, and I skipped the apple juice entirely. I also chose to slice the carrots instead of shred them. Otherwise, I pretty much followed the recipe step by step. You can find the original recipe here.

My recipes calls for fresh chopped veggies

Chopping fresh veggies for my homemade soup recipe from Pinterest

Recipe call for healthy beans

Healthy beans are one of the ingredients in my homemade soup recipe.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We had this for dinner last night … I served it with warm from the oven pumpernickel dinner rolls. YUM !

Pasta E Fagioli with warm pumpernickel dinner rolls

My first time making Pasta E Fagioli soup using a copycat recipe from Olive Garden

This recipe makes a big pot of homemade soup … both my husband and I give it a big thumbs up – you should give it a try 🙂

Tracy Helps You Top 5 Blog Posts 2013

Tracy Helps You’s Top 5 Blog Posts 2013

Tracy Helps You was founded in the spring of 2013. It has been a year of learning for me, and I feel that I’ve had quite a successful first year of business. I’d like to thank everyone who reads my Blog … I truly appreciate it 🙂

I also would like to thank Kris at www.weirdunsocializedhomeschoolers.com & Angie at www.manylittleblessings.com for hosting List It Tuesday.

Here are my Top 5 Posts …

  1. Getting Organized – Paper Clutter
  2. Lending A Helping Hand
  3. I am so Excited, Another To-Do List Item Checked Off !!
  4. Getting Organized – Tips For Filing Your Important Documents and Paper Work
  5. Getting Organized – Garage Storage
Pita Christmas Trees Appetizer

Tracy Helps You’s Tips for Holiday Parties

December is here and with it comes numerous invitations to Holiday parties and get-togethers. I attended one last night and have another tonight, and it’s only the beginning.

Santa Hats

Santa Hats … Fun Christmas Dessert

It’s always so much fun to spend time together with friends and indulge in delicious foods. There is usually a buffet table loaded with quite a variety of appetizers, desserts and drinks … that’s probably where you’ll find most of the guests 🙂

Which brings me to my tip for Holiday Parties … I always ask if I can bring something. Many of these parties are actually annual celebrations for various groups I belong to, like my bowling league, small group or choir. We have a Christmas party every year and all bring a dish to share.

As you know, I love lists … so I created a list (spreadsheet) for Party Food. I keep track of what dish I bring to each party, each year, so I don’t bring the same thing to the next year’s party or to another group party (some people overlap groups). I also keep a copy of the recipes with my list. Then it’s easy to send a copy to someone if they enjoyed my dish and asked for the recipe. I try to plan out what dishes I’ll be bringing after everything is cleaned up on Thanksgiving night (my official start of the Christmas season) … I just love having a plan 🙂

I really enjoy looking through magazines and cookbooks for new recipes to try out. Actually, my latest obsession is browsing on Pinterest … don’t knock it til you’ve tried it 🙂

PS … I brought the little Santa Hats last night, they were a big hit … I’m bringing the Pita Christmas Trees tonight !

Shop for Christmas Gifts during Back to School Sales

Holiday Gift Shopping During Back-To-School Sales

Its September … schools are back in session, fall routines and schedules are falling into place, calendar dates are filling up fast … and there are only 112(ish) shopping days left til Christmas !!

As you probably know, I love having a plan for everything I do. I would just love to have an organized plan for the whole hectic holiday season; more fun and family, less stress and chaos. I’ll talk about this more in a future blog post. Continue reading

photo by: ell brown
Fresh Produce from my Organic Garden

Top Ten Reasons I Love My Organic Backyard Garden

Thanks to Angie at http:// www.manylittleblessings.com and Top Ten Tuesday!

This is my 10th blog post; so I thought I would share my Top Ten reasons that I love having an organic garden

  1.   I just love daydreaming of how my yard will look come summer time. Reading garden blogs and leafing through seed catalogs. It takes some of the chill out of a snowy northern Illinois March.
  2.   I’m a planner at heart, so I love planning the layout of my garden plot. I started keeping a journal to keep track of what was planted where and the date … what worked and what fizzled. I actually map out my yard and pencil in the variety of plant that will be planted there. My journal also helps me remember what perennials and/or bulbs I have, as well as, when and where they are located.
  3.   I love starting the seeds indoors and placing them by the most sunny window in my house. Checking on them each day, waiting in anticipation to see the first newly sprouted seedlings.
  4.   I love when the weather finally warms up enough to get outside in the fresh air and do some initial yard clean up and garden prep work. While I don’t love picking up a winter’s worth of debris, I do love discovering my daffodils and hyacinth breaking through the ground and coming to life.
  5.   I love planting my thriving little seedlings in the moist garden soil. When I look over my work, they look so fragile and spaced so far apart. It’s hard to believe in a just few months they will be huge and seem crowded.
  6.   I love watering and nurturing my garden, especially in the early summer. I use homemade natural, organic mixtures ~ not chemicals to fertilize and to control insects. Notice that I didn’t say that I love to pull weeds, but alas, I do it so my plants get all the sun and nutrients from the soil they need. Plus it looks so nice ~ all neat and tidy J
  7.   I just love, love, love discovering the very first tiny, cute little green bean or bell pepper of the season … it’s so exciting !!
  8.   I really love the first delectable bite of the very first juicy, red, ripe tomato !
  9.  I love going out to my garden and picking fresh herbs and veges to use in preparing meals for my family. You just can’t get any fresher than that … from the garden to the table in under an hour.
  10. I love sharing the bountiful harvest with our friends and neighbors. I like canning and preserving the last of it so we can enjoy it during the long winter, while anticipating and planning for the next summer garden 🙂
photo by: OakleyOriginals

Back to School ~ Homeschool Planning

Being a planner at heart, I just love this time of year! I love seeing all the sale ads for the back to school supplies and getting homeschool curriculum catalogs in the mail. It’s fun talking with other parents about what has worked for them in the past and what new approach they’ll be trying this year. Yes, I love the preparation / planning for the beginning of a new school year!

In my mind, organizing and planning go hand in hand. It’s like giving stability to an idea; like having a firmly rooted plant that can grow many different branches. You start with what you would like to see happen ideally, and then hammer out the logistics to come up with a workable plan. Your original idea can take off in many different directions, taking on an entirely different form. Continue reading