Soup’s On & Company’s Coming (Giveaway & Online Study Announcement!)

Does the phrase “Company’s coming!” send you running for cover?

I can sooooo relate!

I married into a family full of interior decorators, caterers and Bed and Breakfast owners, while I myself could hardly boil water!

So, I set out to become skilled at “entertaining” to impress my new relatives. However, God quickly taught me the difference between entertaining and offering hospitality, a lesson I learned the hard way.

Entertaining places the emphasis on you and impressing others.

Hospitality places the emphasis on others and refreshing, not impressing, them.

In the month of March, I will be leading an online study of the book I wrote on this topic A Life That Says Welcome: Simple Ways to Open Your Heart & Home to Others

This book and study will help you to:

  • Recognize the reason for offering hospitality
  • Identify the top five excuses for not opening your home and apply simple solutions to combat them
  • Arm yourself with cooking-for-a-crowd menu ideas, make-ahead freezer meals and kid-friendly favorites
  • Acquire weekly speed cleaning strategies, a proven system for de-junking your house and simple, doable decorating tips
  • Obtain creative concepts for living a life of welcome wherever you are

Watch for more details to come. And, if you want to join us and don’t have the book yet, go get a copy. (The last online study I did, all of the major retailers were back-ordered for weeks when it got close to the start date so you might want to be ahead of the game.)

The sign-up is simple. Just subscribe to my blog before March 19th when the study kicks off by clicking on the envelope icon in the top of the sidebar. Any new posts I write will be delivered automatically to your email’s inbox!

Now, for a little preview (and a little giveaway) here is a sneak peek at one of the recipes in the book perfect for a winter welcome for guests:

Chicken Wild Rice Soup

1/2 cup butter (1 stick)

1 medium onion, finely chopped

1 cup chopped, peeled carrots

1/2 cup chopped celery

3/4  cup flour

6 cups chicken stock (or 6 cups water with bouillon cubes to taste)

6-ounce package long grain and wild rice

2 cups chopped, cooked chicken breast

3 tablespoons cooking sherry (optional)

In a large soup kettle, melt butter and sauté onions, carrots, and celery until tender. Stir in flour. Gradually add stock until mixture comes to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to medium low. Prepare rice as directed on box, omitting oil and salt. Add rice and chicken to stock and simmer 10 minutes. Add sherry. Serves 10.


I’ll give two copies of A Life That Says Welcome (one for you & one for a friend) so you can join us for the on-line study in March. I’ll also throw in a $5 Starbucks gift card so you and your friend can discuss the book over coffee.

Just leave us a comment telling us your very favorite soup to eat. And, if you leave the recipe, your name will be entered twice. Winner announced Monday (when I’ll also have another very fun announcement too!)


  1. My favorite soup to make is Corn Chowder… Yummm… :)
    2 pounds potatoes – peeled and cubed
    1 pound bacon
    1 onion, chopped
    4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
    8 cups milk
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
    3 (14.75 ounce) cans creamed corn
    1/4 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
    1 dash paprika

    Boil potatoes in salted water until soft. Drain. Mash half of the potatoes and set aside.
    Fry the bacon until very crisp. Crumple the bacon and set aside.
    Fry the onion inn the bacon grease until translucent and soft.
    Dump the cooked onions into a large stockpot. Add the flour and heat until the mixture is bubbly and the flour is well dissolved. Add the milk and bring to a boil over medium-low heat, stirring frequently. You need to watch your pot pretty carefully while bringing to a boil and heating. The bottom tends to easily scorch. Once boiling add the salt, pepper, bacon, corn and all the potatoes. (If desired reserve some of the bacon for the garnish.)
    Heat soup until hot. Serve garnished with a dash of paprika, a sprinkling of cheddar cheese and some crumbled bacon.

  2. I just found your blog – its great – would love to win your book to share with my best friend for over 28 years!
    My favorite soup is split pea with ham in the crock pot (fix it and forget it cookbook)
    1 lb pack of split peas
    1 ham hock
    1 carrot – diced
    1 rib of celery – diced
    2 qts. water
    1/4 tsp pepper
    1 bay leaf
    2 whole allspice
    3 potatoes – diced
    1 tsp.. sugar
    Wash and sort split peas, remove any stones. Combine all ingredients in slow cooker. Cover and cook on low 8-10 hours. Remove ham bone, cut meat off and dice, return meat to soup and stir through. Remove bay leaf before serving. Enjoy!

  3. I love to make and eat and reheat potato soup!

    5 whole garlic heads
    2 bacon slices, diced
    1 cup diced onion
    1 cup diced carrot
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    6 cups diced baking potato (about 2 pounds)
    4 cups low-salt chicken broth
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon pepper
    1 bay leaf
    1 cup 2% low-fat milk
    1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley


    Remove white papery skin from each garlic head (do not peel or separate cloves). Wrap each head separately in aluminum foil. Bake at 350° for 1 hour; let cool for 10 minutes. Separate cloves, and squeeze to extract 1/4 cup of garlic pulp; discard the skins.
    Cook bacon in a large saucepan over medium-high heat until crisp. Add onion, carrot, and minced garlic, and sauté 5 minutes. Add potato, broth, salt, pepper, and bay leaf; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes or until potato is tender; remove bay leaf.
    Combine garlic pulp and 2 cups potato mixture in a blender or food processor, and process until smooth. Return purée to pan; stir in milk, and cook over low heat until thoroughly heated. Remove from heat, and stir in chopped parsley.

  4. My favorite soup is butternut squash soup.

    It’s simple and hearty; puree the squash, add heavy wipping cream, salt and pepper, chili powder and curry powder. Bring everything to a gentle simmer add 2 cups of shredded cheese, stir till melted and smooth. Eat and enjoy.

  5. I love french onion soup! It’s such a treat to me, but also very simple to make. I could really use this book. I’m trying to be more hospitable, but it’s not something that feels natural for me. I’m calmer when I have a plan, but people don’t always tell me they’re going to pop by, and I panic thinking about ‘things’ instead of being in the moment with that person. Also, we have an upcoming Women’s Retreat (on Proverbs 31) and I’d love to give the other book away as a prize.

    French Onion Soup
    6 onions, peeled and thinly sliced.
    Olive oil
    2 cloves garlic, minced
    8 cups of beef stock
    Salt and pepper
    Toasted Sliced French bread
    1 1/2 cups of grated cheese

    Sauté the onions in the olive oil on medium high heat until well browned, but not burned, about 30-40 minutes (or longer). Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add the stock Cover partially and simmer until the flavors are well blended, about 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle the soup into oven proof bowls. Cover with the toast and sprinkle with cheese. Put into the broiler for 10 minutes at 350 degrees F, or until the cheese bubbles and is slightly browned.

  6. Hearty Chicken Noodle Soup

    4 med. potatoes, peeled, diced and gently boiled (not too soft)
    1 bag extra-wide egg noodles, slightly boiled (5min)
    2 stalks celery, chopped
    2-3 large carrots, chopped
    1 can each:
    diced tomatoes
    cut green beans
    1 garlic clove, smashed
    1 carton chicken stock
    1 carton chicken broth
    leftover chicken, chopped (I usually use rotisirre or baked, but in a jam, I’ve even used canned)
    1-2 T. veggie dip seasoning -or to taste (I use “veggie delight” from Tupperware)

    Cook in Crock Pot on low all day. If it needs more liquid, I use the water from boiling the potatoes. You’ll need a large slow cooker, because it makes a large amount! The beauty of this recipe is that you can just use whatever you have in your fridge and pantry or adjust it to your family’s taste. It’s a “soup that eats like a meal!”

  7. I love Panera’s Chicken & Wild Rice Soup. I have made a homemade chicken noodle soup with organic chicken broth, all natural rotisserie chicken, fresh carrot slices and gluten free noodles. Looking forward to your bible study it is exactly what I need! Thank You

  8. One of my favorite soups is from my Aunt Freda. I think it has a Bohemian name. But we just call it Aunt Freda’s soup.

    1# polish sausage, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
    2 cups sliced carrots
    2 Tablespoon butter
    1/4 tsp carroway seed (We leave this out as we don’t like it!)
    Brown sliced carrots and polish sausage in the butter in large skillet until carrots are tender.
    2 cans of cream of celery soup
    1 soup can of milk
    1 soup can of water
    3 cups cabbage cut in strips
    Simmer all of above for 1 hour, then enjoy!

    (Sometimes I add some corn)

  9. Great idea! I’m going to have to write down some of these recipes.
    My favorite comfort soup is Velvety Vegetable Cheese Soup
    1 (16 ounce) package frozen broccoli carrots cauliflower mix
    2 (14 ounce) cans chicken broth
    12 ounces Velveeta cheese, cut up

    1 Place vegetables and broth in large saucepan; cover. Bring to boil on medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low; simmer 10 minute or until vegetables are tender.

    2 I put all the vegetables and a little broth in a blender and blended it until the vegetables were pureed. (This was incredible this way! Very creamy!!!).

    3 Stir in Velveeta; cook 5 minute or until Velveeta is melted and soup is heated through, stirring frequently.

  10. I need this! My favorite soup is a taco soup that my new neighbor brought over when my first child was born. I don’t know the recipe but it had chopped tomatos, beef, beans, cheese and sour cream with some tortilla strips. It was so wonderfully flavorful and satisfying that it was a blessing to me. I was too tired to cook, I didn’t know anyone in the neighborhood and it was such a welcome surprise!

  11. What a great way to get tons of yummy soup recipes! Have been reading your posts for a while and wanting to purchase the book. But… trying to finish up a few more I’ve already started. This online study starting in March will be just what I need to finish up on time :)

    My favorite soup is actually pretty easy.
    Tomato Soup
    Open a can, add half a cup of water. Heat. Add a grilled cheese sandwich to the side :) Enjoy.

    See, dinner really can be simple!

  12. Baked Potato Soup

    12 slices bacon
    2/3 cup margarine
    2/3 cup all-purpose flour
    7 cups milk
    4 large baked potatoes, peeled and cubed
    4 green onions, chopped
    1 1/4 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
    1 cup sour cream
    1 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon ground black pepper


    Place bacon in a large, deep skillet. Cook over medium heat until browned. Drain, crumble, and set aside.
    In a stock pot or Dutch oven, melt the margarine over medium heat. Whisk in flour until smooth. Gradually stir in milk, whisking constantly until thickened. Stir in potatoes and onions. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently.
    Reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes. Mix in bacon, cheese, sour cream, salt, and pepper. Continue cooking, stirring frequently, until cheese is melted.

  13. I can’t wait to start receiving these emails… having people in my home is not something I am
    very comfortable with and honestly avoid at all costs, so I am looking forward to learning how to willingly open my home to others!

    My family and I LOVE chicken and dumplings! Boil and debone chicken, strain broth. Return chicken to broth and add equal amount whole milk. Season to taste with pepper. I can’t make them without “real” dumplings, so I make biscuit dough out of self-rising flour, crisco, and buttermilk (full-fat only). Drop dough by the spoonful into the simmering soup… the more dumplings, the better! Cover and reduce to low and cook about 15-20 minutes until biscuits are done.

  14. Found you on fb. I love two soups. One is simple lentil soup. Saute celery , carrots , and onions, Add thyme and rosemary.Add veg stock and lentils. Cook until lentils are done. An easy to pull together soup.
    2n is Onion soup. Sautee onions, add beef broth. When come to boil. Pour into individual containers (oven safe) Add crusty coutons and swiss cheese on top. Stick in oven until cheese is melted. A easy soup to make while cleaning kitchen. Onions cook slow on stove until your are ready to pull it together.

  15. mmm that sounds yummy! My favorite soup is a recreation of my moms potato soup.
    Ingredients: 2-4 cups of Almond Milk (or whatever milk you want)
    1 can cream of chicken soup (or cream of anything soup)
    10 potatoes, scrubbed and chopped and boiled (skin on makes it taste better)
    8 slices of cooked bacon
    1/2 onion, sliced and cooked in bacon grease with 1-2 cloves of Garlic with a pinch of brown sugar to help carmelize
    1 cup diced ham cubes

    Save 3 slices cooked bacon to put on top of soup as a garnish.
    Mix all ingredients together and bring to slow boil.
    Serve with saltines or pop tube biscuits. Put on bacon and enjoy.

    Love love love this meal. If you dont have cream of chicken soup, you can use 1 can of chicken stock. I like to use what I have on hand so this is what I used! :)

  16. Everyone tells me that my navy bean soup is yummy. I make it every January with my Christmas ham bone.
    Our other favorite soup is Italian Bean. Two cans of Bean & Bacon Soup, 2 cans of Minestroni, add 4 cans of water (or 2 water & 2 milk, if desired). Plus a few drops of Tabasco & spices of your choice. Heat & serve with bread or crackers.

  17. Thank you so much, this is SO exciting!! My facorite soup is:

    Pasta E Fagioli

    2 lbs. ground beef
    1 onion, chopped
    3 carrots, sliced
    4 stalks celery, chopped
    2 cans diced tomatoes, undrained
    1 can red kidney beans, drained
    1 can Great Northern beans, drained
    3 cans beef stock (or 4 1/2 cups homemade)
    3 tspn. oregano (I substitute Italian Seasoning)
    2 tspn. pepper
    5 tspn. parsley
    1 tspn. Tobasco sauce (I omit this)
    1 jar spaghetti sauce
    1 c. pasta

    Brown beef in a skillet. Drain fat and place meat in a crock pot or large stock pot. Add everything but the pasta. Crockpot: cook on low 7-8 hours or high 4-5 hours. Stovetop: Simmer on low for about 3 hours. Just before serving, cook pasta and add to soup.

    Jenn M
    [email protected]

  18. 6 large baking potatoes , peeled, cut in 1/2 -inch cubes
    1 large onion , chopped
    1 quart chicken broth
    3 garlic cloves , minced (or pressed)
    1/4 cup butter
    2 1/2 teaspoons salt
    1 teaspoon pepper
    1 cup cream or 1 cup half-and-half cream
    1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
    3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
    1 cup sour cream (optional)
    8 slices bacon , fried & crumbled
    cheese , for sprinkling

    Combine first seven ingredients in a large crock pot; cover and cook on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 8 hours (potato should be tender).
    Mash mixture until potatoes are coarsely chopped and soupy is slightly thickened.
    Stir in cream, cheese and chives.
    Top with sour cream (if used), sprinkle with bacon and more cheese.

    Read more:

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