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The Night Before Christmas

~A modification of Clement Moore’s “A Visit from St. Nicholas”

‘Twas the night before Christmas and all thru the field,

Stood some shepherds a-watching, while some of them kneeled.

Their campfires were warm in the wintery air,

With hopes that the dawning sun soon would be there.

When out of the sky there arose such a glory,

They sprang to their feet, and heard “The Great Story!!”

For what to their wondering eyes should appear,

But an Angel who told them they “Never should fear—”

“To all people will come the Good News of great joy:

A manger -born Savior! Lord Jesus—a boy!”

Then suddenly Heavenly Hosts with a cry,

Sang praises that echoed and rang thru the sky—

“Now glory to God in the highest of Heaven—

“And peace be to men on Earth is now given!”

To Bethlehem’s manger the shepherds they ran,

Their hearts full of wonder—like any a man.

And there after midnight they found in the shed,

The swaddling-clothed Savior asleep in His bed.

And so, as we celebrate Christmas once more

And purchase the presents and cards by the score;

Let us hear US exclaim, ere we drive out of sight:

“The Lord Jesus, our Savior, was born on that Night!!”

By Pastor Paul R. Hansen

Christmas 1960

(This was written by my dad.)

Peppers!While I love smooth soup, my kids prefer chunks, so I cooked one green, one red and one yellow chopped bell pepper in the stock and added them to the soup!

October, 2013, Soup made from cleaning out the frig

Easy Vitamix Veg GF non-dairy soup!

Today I am making Clean Out the Frig Soup. It has been a specialty of mine since the first few months I was married, which was over twenty years ago.

I have since figured out here are certain base ingredients needed: water and veggies in your house. You should also have a larger pot like a stock pot or Dutch oven and I like to use the cast iron pan I got at a garage sale for $1 because everything cooks so well in it, it is easy to clean and it does add iron to the food. Plus, it reminds me of what a bargain it was and makes my heart happy that I have given it a home where it is used!

While you can blend things with a stick blender, I am having a love affair with my Vitamix and we’ve been together for over a year, so this isn’t the honeymoon phase anymore. If you don’t have one, sell stuff to get the money to acquire one. It is life-altering and it is my favorite appliance in the house save…the washing machine.

 

 

Want to make the soup? I will show pictures along the way since I never measure.

Start with:

water

 

potatoes

and a stock pot

I cut them into even slices so they will cook at the same rate. While the potatoes are trying to boil, cut up an onion and sauté it in the cast iron pan. I use olive oil. How much? Check the photo.

Adding in the onion, I let it cook for a bit while I go looking for something green.

I looked in the frig and found kale today,

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so I added kale in with the onions

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Don’t be afraid of salt, I say.

 

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I mean, if your doctor has advised you against it, don’t add as much salt, but it helps bring he liquid out of the kale and adds flavor.

 

I kept stirring the onions and kale with olive oil until they were limp and carmelizing. I turned them down to low.

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and kept stirring while I checked the frig again.

 

Finding a head of cabbage that looked quite awful, I cut it up and peeled some layers

off to find almost half was just fine. I cut it up and added it to the potatoes knowing I was blending it, so the sizes didn’t really matter.

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Bay leaves are a must in my soups. These are a little older, so I add five. Make sure you count them so you can fish them out later.

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While the potatoes and cabbage are bubbling,

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I see the onion and kale are done so I turn off that burner.

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when the cabbage and potatoes are cooked,

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I fish the veggies out of the water

which is now a vegetable stock (or at least the beginnings of one!)

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and I KEEP the stock water!

I also find all the Bay Leaves! And count them to make sure they are all out of the soup.

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I put enough stock water in with the veggies to help it all blend smoothly.

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Starting on 1 and increasing to 10, I blend it up in my Vitamix. It gets a little thick, so I add more stock and blend again, stirring it down with the nifty tamper.

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then I pour it into a clean pan

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and head to the stove to blend up the onions and kale.

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I put a couple ladles of the stock water into the cast iron pan

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and heat it up to get all the yumminess from the carmelization into the soup.

Adding that to the Vitamix,

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I blend up the onion-kale mix.

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After adding that to the soup,

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my blender is coated with great stuff, so I add a couple ladles of stock water to the blender and

blend again

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…it practically comes clean!

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now….for seasonings.

I don’t need to add much with all these flavorful veggies, so some of my Himalayan salt from Savory….

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And dill! I LOVE dill – especially in any potato based soups.

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Time to taste…I think it is soup!

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now, there is still some hot water left and I will keep that to cook with later today or tomorrow.

or…maybe the dog would like a little. Hmm…

Sitting down to enjoy my soup, I do deem it delicious and then I decide to add some pepper flakes, just because they go with the bowl and I like a little heat in my food.

Yumlish!

 

1 out of 3 - we can do better!

“Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers”– Harry S. Truman

We need leaders to help change this so we can have future leaders. Can you help me find people who want to help us in our mission to help kids love to read? The first step is having them own their own books. My company is in a unique position to make sweeping change, but we need ten times the number of consultants. Please spread the word that we need more people who love reading, love books, want to help kids and could use the income.
We need more people to host literacy-centered events and parties.
We need people to sponsor community book fairs.
We need more people buying books for the kids in their lives and spending time reading aloud to them.
Can you help?
http://www.UsborneNow.com

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