Brrr..its starting to get cold here in phoenix! Okay..so we don’t have snow like other parts of the country, but its cold to us!
As soon as it starts to get really cold it seems like I go into hibernation mode…I am completely unmotivated to do anything. I just want to snuggle up under the covers all day drinking hot cocoa. I need to kick this feeling ASAP – I skipped my long run on Friday to simply lay around the house…then again on Saturday and Sunday cuz it was too cold. I finally got my butt out there for a run yesterday (since I have a 10k on Sunday) and cranked out 6.3 miles before it got dark. Hopefully I will keep with this and do an 11 miler tomorrow *crossing my fingers*
This past weekend was full of baking and other shenanigans. Lorraine came over and we whipped up a few of our favorite holiday goodies (including 3 batches of salted caramels!).
Then we headed over to Dave and Busters for a night of food and games to celebrate Hillary’s bf’s birthday.
Crystal and I got sucked into this Zombie killing game – and ended up playing it for a good 30 minutes…until we beat the game. I have never done that before, but man was I hooked once we passed the first level. So much fun.
A little post-victory photo :)
And Ross was quite the crane game player – he won not one, but two stuffed animals including that giant yellow thing on his shoulders. He did a pretty hysterical victory lap around the place too.
In the middle of Tempe Marketplace they have this huge tree decorated for the holidays.
We all squeezed in for a lovely photo by the tree :)
Well, it’s officially soup season! There is nothing I like more than enjoying a nice warm bowl of soup in the evening. What I like about this soup is that it’s easy on the waist and it pretty low maintenance since most of it is done in the slow cooker. The soup base is pretty simple, but is brightened up with all of the toppings you can add on after. I served this at the taffy pull I hosted a couple of weeks ago, and I think the DIY toppings were everyone’s favorite part!
Slow Cooker Loaded Baked Potato Soup
4 pounds red potatoes
1/3 cup cornstarch
6 cups skim milk
3/4 cup shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
¼ cup green onions
Chopped green onions, divided
6 bacon slices, cooked and crumbled
Pierce potatoes with a fork; microwave on high for 5-10 minutes or until tender. Let cool slightly, peel the potatoes discarding the skins. Coarsely mash the potatoes and place into a 5 quart slow cooker.
Place cornstarch in a medium pot; gradually add 1 cup of milk, stirring with a whisk until blended. Cook over medium heat until thickened. Add cornstarch mixture to mashed potatoes. Gently pour in remaining 5 cups of milk, 3/4 cup cheese, salt, pepper, and green onions. Turn slow cooker on low for 4 hours, stirring occasionally to blend in melted cheese.
Reduce heat to warm until ready to serve. Sprinkle each serving with toppings of choice; cheese, onions, sour cream and bacon.
Recipe adapted from Cooking Light