A Minnesota Winter Dilemma

Ridiculously cold temperatures?  Check!

Super-bundled (and VERY tired) preschooler?  Check!

Mini-van ride with the heat cranked up?  Check!

So Sleepy

Carrying in a sleeping Little Man and having him not wake up AT.  ALL. {even when I bonked his head on the door frame – whoops!}: BEYOND CUTE!

He managed to sleep for 40 minutes like that.  Just screams comfy, huh?

Here’s my dilemma – over-bundle so that they don’t’ freeze on the walk to the van OR under-bundle so they don’t overheat on the road?  Of course on long trips under-bundling is the way to go but running errands around town with lots of in-and-outs – I lean towards over-bundling.  ESPECIALLY during one recent Polar Vortex – although admittedly I barely left the house on the days when it was stupid cold out!

Added to that dilemma is the sheer hassle that results from kids taking off hats and mittens between stops (and sometimes boots, ugh!) that results in additional time this momma has to spend standing in the cold putting the winter gear BACK ON.  I’m not one of those people who dislikes winter.  In fact I enjoy it for the most part even with the bitter cold but hauling 4 kiddos including an infant during the cold months?  Definitely not my favorite:)

Oh, and don’t even get me started on what the he*# kids can do with their mittens!  They’re the socks of winter, don’t you think?!?

Blue Skies & Blessings,

Lindsey

 

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Creamy Wild Rice Soup

Perfect with fresh garlic breadsticks!!

Perfect with fresh garlic breadsticks!!

Nothin’ says WINTER to me like a hearty soup.  And if you are anywhere in the upper Midwest right now it is definitely winter – like the -20 degree wind chill  sort-of winter.  BRRR!!  With a new baby in the house this has meant many, many days where the kiddos and I haven’t ventured out at all.  Preparing and eating delicious food has helped prevent stir-craziness – although I knew I really needed to get out once a trip to the grocery store seemed like a treat:)

In the world of hearty soups, wild rice soup has been a long time favorite.  But I’ve struggled to find a simple recipe that I loved.  I got a hankering a few weeks back.  This recipe from Betty Crocker looked close so I modified to meet my preferences.  The result is simply delicious!

An added bonus?  The recipe freezes well.  I froze individual portions in mason jars.  Once thawed I just microwaved to reheat.  The soup will look curdly – is that a word? – until its heated enough but it is just as scrumptious once it is stirred thoroughly.

Obviously you could add chicken, bacon, cheese, etc. but for me this isn’t necessary – the recipe tastes delicious as is and provides a yum, yum, yummy meatless option for our family.  We are always trying to find recipes where we (or more specifically D:) won’t miss having meat and this fits the bill.

Creamy Wild Rice Soup Recipe

Want to print the recipe?  Just click on the image above and it should print nicely on 8 x 11 paper.

If you’re interested in freezing left-overs I would recommend doubling the recipe.  As written it only makes about 4 cups – not a lot, especially since it is nearly impossible to resist seconds.

The original recipe gives alternatives to cooking your wild rice – frozen or canned – so if you need to save time there are alternatives that make this a really quick meal.

Thanks for taking a look!  As always, let me know if you give it a try.

Blue Skies & Blessings, Lindsey

This project will be linked up to some (or all:) of these LINK PARTIES:

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1 + 1 = 6 {She’s here and she’s PERFECT!!}

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Baby Girl – by far our “cheesiest” newborn – really, really needed that first bath:)

Eight years to the day of our “1+1” I had the privilege of telling D that we were expecting baby #4.  What an exciting anniversary gift, don’t you think?  Mid-November the little lady arrived and we couldn’t be happier.  She is our “last but not least” and we are enjoying this last opportunity to snuggle and smooch a newborn.

Baby Girl was 8 pounds 3 ounces.  Amazingly, this was the EXACT weight of her two older sisters.  The nurses and doctors said they’d never seen that many from one family born at exactly the same weight…I think the little lady is already trying to keep up with the Big Girls!

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Hospital – Day 2

The delivery – planned, repeat cesarean – went better than anticipated.  Since this was my fourth c-section the doctors prepared us that there could be complications.  We were beyond fortunate that there were none – the surgery was quick and routine, I healed well and quickly.

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Loodle LOVES her new baby sister!

The “big kids” all adore Baby Girl – in fact Miss Silly and Loodle have had their fair share of fights over who gets to hold her and for how long.  Little Man will come up to me and tell me “She want her Little Man” when he wants to give her a snuggle – so stinkin’ cute!

First COMPLETE family photo - Thanksgiving 2013

First COMPLETE family photo – Thanksgiving 2013

In all the busyness of bringing Baby Girl home from the hospital and maintaining as much routine as possible for the other kiddos we didn’t manage to get a family photo until Baby Girl was already 6 days old.  Oh well, I’ve come to realize that as a mother of 4 I’m going to have to except that sometimes my plans/expectations will be derailed…I did get a ton of cute photos of all four kids together before that though!

Its amazing with each subsequent baby how much more they are exposed to at a younger age.  With Miss Silly (i.e. baby #1) we were pretty much at home for the first few weeks.  With baby #4?  We were at a family get-together before she was a week old!  Baby Girl had the PERFECT outfit – got to love a little Turkey Tush, right??

Turkey Tush

Baby Girl – 6 days old

By three weeks, she’d already completed her first volunteer opportunity – ringing the Salvation  Army bell with her older sisters and me.  It was an inside location, of course!

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I’m guessing one of the littlest bell ringers they’ve had!

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In their Christmas jammies – Little Man (2), Loodle (4), Baby Girl (5 weeks), and Miss Silly (6).

Baby Girl is our Serious Baby – always seeming to ponder and study her surroundings.  She is also a “milk monster” according to her siblings.  Indeed, this little girl LOVES to eat.

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I just can’t get enough of Baby Girl!

I am so lucky to be her mommy.

Blue Skies and Blessings,

Lindsey