Slow Cookers and Jet Lag

Alright, well, I know I promised to have some of my Europe trip pictures posted this week, but that was before I realised that I had 958 of them – and that’s after I’d sorted through and deleted all of the blurry and really dark ones. So you’ll have to wait on the Europe update and be sated with this awesome minestrone soup that I made yesterday! It was delicious, and was perfect for warming us all up on a really gross and rainy day.

Slow Cooker Minestrone Soup
adapted from the Betty Crocker Recipe Keeper

4 cups vegetable broth
4 cups tomato juice
1 tablespoon dried basil leaves
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 medium carrots, sliced (2 cups)
1 sweet red pepper, diced (1 cup)
1 medium onion, chopped (1/2 cup)
1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
~2 1/2 cups uncooked penne pasta
Parmesan cheese

  1. Mix all ingredients except pasta and cheese in slow cooker.
  2. Cover and cook on low heat setting 7 to 8 hours or until vegetables are tender.
  3. Stir in pasta. Cover and cook on high heat setting 15 to 20 minutes or until pasta is tender. Sprinkle each serving with cheese.

Makes 12 servings.


I served it with a pretty simple spinach salad and some nice multigrain baguette… it was, dare I say, fantastic! It’s the first time in a while that I actually made dinner for everyone: I made the soup with Mum’s help, did the salad on my own, and even walked down to the supermarket and picked out the bread by myself. I bought it with my own money, and everything!

…can you tell that I’m almost unreasonably proud of myself?

I also took my sister to the movies yesterday. We saw Monsters Vs. Aliens, her choice, and it was pretty cute! Because we went to the cheap seats, it was only six bucks for both of us to get in, so I treated her to an ice cream after the show while we wandered around the Asian supermarket waiting for our ride to pick us up. It was a really nice outing, and I feel a lot better about how I’ve been acting towards Claire now… it’s been a little tense between us lately, but going out together helped, I think.

And, last update, I’m nearly over my jet lag – finally! For the past five days, I’ve been waking up at ridiculous hours of the night. Surprisingly, though, I always get a lot done when I’m up because of jet lag, so I’ve totally re-arranged my room, dusted for the first time in nearly four years, cleaned my bathroom, done some mending… it’s pretty crazy. Mum’s liking it so far, though!

Alrighty then, well, I should really get going. I’ve got a family that I’m supposed to meet at noon… they want me to babysit and I’m not about to turn down extra cash! I’ll talk to you kids later.



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