Recipes · writing

Yes, there’s peanut butter in this soup.

IMG_2090

Supper’s on the table. 

Once this was a feature in my newsletter, and while I’ll still drop some special recipes to subscribers only, as part of the blog resurrection, I’m letting you into my kitchen.

Seriously, if I could have everyone over for soup and bread I would.

January tried to be winter, and really, it was pretty successful. So I made some homemade bread, wrote an ode to my Crockpot, and stirred lots of hearty soup for those chilly days.

Now it’s like springtime. But it’s really only February so pretty sure I still need to keep all the soup recipes out.

My award for “Favorite Soup with a Say What? Ingredient” is definitely Peanut-Butter Vegetable. Don’t scoff. It’s delicious. I promise.

I used my Instant Pot to make this (note I haven’t written an ode to it yet, we’re still not great friends). But it’s easy for soups. Use the sautee function, then add the rest, and set it for a short pressure cook. That timing thing I still haven’t figured out, but this soup turned out well!

Peanut-Butter Vegetable Soup (adapted from Thy Hand Hath Provided)

2 carrots, chopped
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp butter
3 cups chicken stock
2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 cups zucchini and/or yellow squash, chopped
1 can stewed tomatoes, chopped
1/2 cup peanut butter

Sautee carrots, onion, garlic in butter. Stir in broth, sweet potatoes, zucchini, salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until vegetables are tender. Stir in tomatoes and peanut butter and heat through.

Now send me your favorite soup recipe? You can hit reply or find me on Insta or Facebook. Pictures will definitely get shared!

In the meantime, read much and eat well. (If you want to know what’s currently saving my wintry life, I’ve got a list right here.)

P.S. Another reason to make soup. You can read a book while it’s simmering away. Or fold the laundry. You know, whatever makes you happy.

engaged!
Free this month with newsletter signup!

 

Advertisements
reflections · writing

What’s Saving My Life :: Winter 2019

IMG_1958

People told me this would happen as I approach 40 (2019 is my last year in my thirties). They told me I would begin to realize so much better who I am, who I want to be, and who I’ve let the world make me.

I’m not sure I’m so happy with the last one. I’m a people pleaser and I overanalyze every one and every response–which actually is an incredibly unhealthy way to live. I may have a gift of empathy–and it may make me a better writer–but the junk of others doesn’t have to determine ME.

So this year is an experiment of sorts. A last year in my thirties and a time of personal reflection. I’ll drop some of those thoughts here, in this blog I’ve neglected since my debut novel released. Some will go to my insiders–those people who subscribe to my newsletter and let me tell them some things in their inboxes. Some will trickle into my Instagram and Facebook feeds, and I’d love to hear from you.

What’s saving your life–right now in the middle of winter and one month into a new year?

My list is simple and I’m linking up with my favorite Modern Mrs. Darcy who takes this practice cue from fellow writer Barbara Brown Taylor (who incidentally lives near me but I’ve never seen her at the grocery store).

What’s Saving My Life …

  1. Hiking My mama is an avid hiker and sometimes I tag along. Even when it’s cold, but only because she promises me baked goods and coffee when I’m done.
  2. Yoga For the first time since my wreck, my back doesn’t hurt. I’m no expert, but I like the Quick Yoga workouts I find on Amazon Prime. Doesn’t hurt the instructor’s name is Lindsay.
  3. Hot tea I’m partial to anything citrus flavored, especially a lemon-ginger at night because lately, my tummy needs some settling on a way too regular basis.
  4. My Bullet Journal I write everything in this little book. And I use these pretty pens. What I love about the BuJo is there’s no right or wrong way to do it. Setting it up can be overwhelming if you do all. the. research. Or you can be lazy like me and avoid all they hype and use what works for you. I do make a weekly spread and I try to keep up with my table of contents so I can find everything quickly. I also color code my months, which helps. For me the best thing is that everything I need is in one place.
  5. Internet hangout sessions While I’m making the effort to hang out with my IRL friends who can meet for coffee, I’m incredibly grateful for the hangout sessions I have via the Internet with my writer friends. These are the people who don’t let me add in plot twists just because, who call me out when I use way too many adjectives, and who help me keep this publishing journey in perspective. We live in 3 different states, so being able to “see” each other is wonderful.
  6. Fuzzy blankets Polar vortex came through. Enough said.
  7. Burning the gas fireplace without the logs. Our logs apparently weren’t suited for our fireplace and caused a soot problem. So take them out suggested the lady at the propane company. Guess what? Gas fireplaces don’t necessarily need logs to work. They’re aesthetic not necessity.
  8. Soup Next week I’ll offer up one of my favorite weird soup recipes, but I believe soup is a winter staple.
  9. Bible reading plan I’ve never read the Bible all the way through. Beginning to End. So my husband and I are doing it together. Right now we’re having interesting convos centered around Leviticus. Who knew there were SO. MANY. RULES? Hallelujah, grace. (Our plan is simple and listed in the back of our NIV devotional Bibles, but I’m reading my NKJV study version.)
  10. Book Tracking Y’all know I like to read, but I’m terrible at follow through. My Goodreads is only updated sporadically and it syncs to my Kindle app and thinks I’m reading things I’m really not because I hate to read on my phone. So this year I’m going to try tracking them by month in my bullet journal. So far I’ve read five books this year. I talk about them a lot on Instagram.

Your turn! You can find me on the socials or leave a comment or a send an email or ignore this and go back to work 🙂

P.S. This post contains affiliate links.

 

writing

Magnolia Mistletoe is here!

If you’re a newsletter subscriber (you’re my FAVORITE) you already know that my Christmas novella, Magnolia Mistletoe, is now available for FREE! If you’re not a subscriber, what are you waiting for?

MagnoliaMistletoe

Hannah Calhoun knows what she wants for Christmas. But before she can become a full-fledged partner in her mother’s wedding planning business, she has to first prove she can handle her own shortcomings. Benjamin Townsend is an entrepreneur always looking out for the next big thing—and if hosting weddings on Edisto is it, he’s all in. Even if that does mean spending a lot of time with Hannah, whose world is full of way more happily ever after than his. Once the magnolia and mistletoe are hung, will an Edisto Christmas be exactly the magic these two need?

Yes, I want a free book for Christmas! Click here.

 

I adore this book. It is wonderfully written and tells the story beautifully.

Find Still Waters on Amazon or ask for it at your favorite local bookstore.

writing

Book Review + Giveaway Tour: The Ornament Keeper

The Ornament Keeper is more than a sweet Christmas novella! Win a copy here.

By The Book

TheOrnament Keeper_BLOG

Welcome to the blog tour & giveaway for The Ornament Keeper by Eva Marie Everson, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

the ornament keeperTitle: The Ornament Keeper
Author: Eva Marie Everson
Publisher: New Hope Publishers
Release Date: September 24, 2018
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Holiday

Award-winning author Eva Marie Everson wraps up a Christmas story of hope, love, and forgiveness just in time for the holidays.

The Ornament Keeper, a contemporary Christmas novella, features Felicia and Jackson Morgan who are spending their first Christmas apart after twenty years of marriage. But a lifetime of gifted ornaments helps Felicia piece together the story of their marriage and the one mistake of unforgiveness she made before they said, “I do.”

Can these memory-filled ornaments reunite this family before Christmas? Only time will tell.

PURCHASE: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | CBD | Book Depository


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

eva-marie-hi-res

Eva Marie Everson is a…

View original post 501 more words

Books · writing

I’d Rather Be Reading (or writing or anything that isn’t dishes)

unnamed-7

When we moved into our “new” house, one of our friends hefted one of the (many) boxes of books and told me if he’d have known this was the gig, he’d have bought us all Kindles.

No thanks.

I don’t know you about you, but I have strong feelings about books in hand, books on my shelves, books stacked two deep on windowsills, and accruing library fines because I haven’t written down all my favorite quotes yet and can’t bear to take it back. (I promise I’m returning Guernsey … next week.)

I’d love to know how books–even if they’re downloaded by the hundreds to your device (to each his own) or arranged alphabetically or carefully curated to match your decor–affect your life?

Are books a must-have? A luxury? A compliment? As necessary as strong coffee and good wine?

What are your favorites? Which ones are you ashamed you haven’t read? What did you hate–but still value? What did you hate and regret the money, time, or energy lost? What do you love but never admit? What do you pretend to love so you look smarter?

I’ll tell you mine if you’ll tell me yours. All this week I’m sharing book love in my Instagram feed and stories (@lindseypbrackett). The books that stir me, save me, challenge me, and gut me.

The kind of books I’d write about in my own collection of bookish essays. But I haven’t written that yet so instead I’ll just have to give away a copy of I’d Rather Be Reading!

unnamed-2

A few years ago, just as I came out of the fog of young motherhood and began to wonder how, exactly, one became a writer, I found Anne Bogel, aka Modern Mrs. Darcy. She was a reader. And a writer. And a unique lifestyle enthusiast.

She was a breath of fresh air in my feed and inbox and oh my gosh, the book recommendations. Girl knows her story. And plenty of others. But I think I was sold on this little fact she doesn’t make her platform–she’s a busy mother of four kids. She’s homeschooled and private schooled and public schooled and all the in-betweens. Her words felt like the cry of my heart for learning and literature–among the laundry and meal prep and motherhood.

unnamed

Her new book, I’d Rather Be Reading, releases TODAY! You can snag it from your favorite online retailer, indie bookstore, or big chain. You can order it on Audible (read by Anne herself). You can request your library add it to their collection.

You can win a copy over on Instagram by following (and engaging) with my posts this week because I absolutely can’t wait to share this book with y’all. And I really can’t wait to meet Anne Bogel in person at The Story Shop in Monroe, Georgia on September 11!

Just call me fangirl.

If you sign up for my newsletter, Just Write Life, you’ll be entered for ANOTHER CHANCE TO WIN a copy of I’d Rather Be Reading and you’ll get a monthly installment from me with writerly-bookish-helpful things like recipes, reading suggestions, and quick listen podcasts. I’d love to know how I can help you find more time for the creative life among your everyday ordinary.

Until then, happy reading!

 

P.S. Don’t forget, sweet readers, I want to talk all things bookish with you on Instagram this week, so follow me over there or leave me a note right here in the comments, and I’ll give you a shout out (and an extra entry to win).

 

 

 

amelia · gus · just write life · motherhood · writing

When Determination Comes at the Pace of a Bear Crawl

IMG_0368They tell me bears are fast. If we see one when we’re hiking, the worst thing we can do is run because they will chase us down and eat us.

Okay, not really, but mauling for sure. Maybe.

My kids participated in a bear crawl this morning because the bear is their school mascot (of course because we live in the mountains) and this fun run raised lots of money for their school. Specifically the teacher’s classroom libraries, which I think should be stocked with Cynthia Rylant and plenty of gorgeous picture books.

(I told this to my youngest’s kindergarten teacher from last  year. I don’t know his first grade teacher well enough yet to go all book bossy on her.)

Thirty-five laps around a “track” made of tiny cones and discarded water cups. I have no idea who long the actual footage was, but I know it took most kids about thirty minutes to complete. I expected my turbo charged little boy to run his heart flat out.

He did. He also made his hair look like this which is why I cannot bring myself to cut it.

IMG_0374

But my third, my youngest daughter, who has given us a history that involves words like atrophy and MRI and oligloconal banding, the girl who wears a brace to walk so she doesn’t get too tired, the child who had a complete meltdown at my kitchen table Monday afternoon BECAUSE THIRD GRADE IS SO HARD, I didn’t have any expectations. I just hoped she wouldn’t get run over.

Y’all.

She ran and ran and grinned and ran and cheered and laughed. She beat her friends. She never stopped, never gave up, never worried that she couldn’t do it. Watching her reminded me she’s stronger everyday. She’s better every scan. She’s living with a new normal that’s been her normal for over half her life now.

This is her life.

And she’s determined to live it at high speed–not crawl through it cowered down by the what-ifs.

I think it’s time I took a cue from my baby girl and found my own endurance.

IMG_0400

 

I adore this book. It is wonderfully written and tells the story beautifully.-2

summer · writing

Tips for Time Management (not ironic coming from me at all)

IMG_4801

For us, summer started behind and never caught up. All good things. But there hasn’t been enough watermelon on the porch time.

And I’m tired. Between camps and deadlines and driving 264 miles a day (an exaggeration but that’s how it feels), I’m wishing I had someone to manage my time.

Instead I just made some notes so I’d remember how to do better. Then I blogged them over at one of my other internet homes.


People crack me up when they ask how I “do it all.”

I’m pretty sure if these same people were a fly on my wall, they’d:

a) have full run of the house because I’m too busy to buy a fly swatter.

b) realize pretty quickly, I’m definitely not doing it all.

Read more at Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers.