Zesty Chicken & Rice Soup, and Finding Pleasure and Gratitude at the Bottom of an Empty Bowl

Zesty Chicken & Rice Soup, and Finding Pleasure and Gratitude at the Bottom of an Empty Bowl post image

Have you ever noticed the amazing things you can find at the bottom of a simple, unassuming little bowl of soup? If you've ever sat down to a gloriously steaming, fragrant, brothy, and soothing bowl of liquid-y elixir when you're hungry and hoping to be comforted and made cozy, and then taken pleasure in every little sip off the spoon as it slowly goes down ever-so easily and warms from within, then you most likely know what I speak of. In those precious, golden moments when ... {more please!}

Hearty Split Pea & Smoky Bacon Soup, for When Something of Substance is Craved

Hearty Split Pea & Smoky Bacon Soup, for When Something of Substance is Craved post image

The older I get, the more my soul craves and searches for those things of a deeper, more substantive nature that fill me to the brim with life. Those surface spaces and places that satisfied my youthful cravings well enough, those “top layers” of life where emotions and feelings came and went and changed on a whim without much understanding and wisdom to back them up, are not the places where any long-lasting foundation can be forged, nor any life-long dwelling built. But in my youth, ... {more please!}

Cheesy Grilled Chicken Parmesan Soup, and Filling an Empty Bowl with Something that Sustains

Cheesy Grilled Chicken Parmesan Soup, and Filling an Empty Bowl with Something that Sustains post image

In the cold depths of a grey winter, when the snow seems to endlessly fall and the icy chill surrounds mercilessly both day and night, the soul longs for warmth and comfort in the way of hearty and cozy sustenance, and little provides that better than a hot, hearty bowl of home-cooked soup. When one pulls an empty bowl out of a cupboard, and knows exactly with what hot, rich, tangy, cheesy and savory liquid one is about to fill that bowl with, there is a ... {more please!}

Italian Meatball Minestrone Soup, and an Opportunity to Experience True Joy in Servitude

Italian Meatball Minestrone Soup, and an Opportunity to Experience True Joy in Servitude post image

My husband and I rang in the New Year with a real “Pop!” and “Snap!”, though not in the celebratory way that you might expect. The Sunday before New Year's Eve, my husband decided that it would be as good a time as ever to try to fix the slow drip we had in our bathroom sink, and so we both threw ourselves into the job, he as “plumber” and me as “assistant”. The job itself was a struggle, and before we began, I had my ... {more please!}

Tomato-n-Grilled Cheese Soup, When Two Good Things Unite To Become One Even Better Thing

Tomato-n-Grilled Cheese Soup, When Two Good Things Unite To Become One Even Better Thing post image

Something very special, very magical, happens when two really good things come together and are combined: they make a new, even better thing. Whenever my husband and I take a few moments to reflect on our blog (and what better time than the New Year!), we can't help but make note of the simple fact that without one of the two of us, there just truly wouldn't be “The Cozy Apron”. And there's an amazingly beautiful and humbling gravity to that realization. You see, without those ... {more please!}

Fall Harvest Pumpkin & Beef Stew, a Bread Bowl’s Best Friend

Fall Harvest Pumpkin & Beef Stew, a Bread Bowl’s Best Friend post image

There are many things in life that make the best of friends. Certain things partner up in such a way making them better together than they ever could've been apart: a cool evening and a blanket; a good movie and some fresh, hot popcorn; a golden-pink hued sunset and a contemplative walk; a heart filled with love and a warm embrace or a kiss. The things that go together give a little extra definition to life, and create warmth and preciousness; they offer color and a ... {more please!}

Hearty Italian Chicken and Autumn Veggie Soup, and Gratitude for the Simple Pleasures

Hearty Italian Chicken and Autumn Veggie Soup, and Gratitude for the Simple Pleasures post image

It gives me a lot of joy and contentment to find pleasure in something simple. Just before sitting down to write, I decided to spend a few moments sitting in a chair in the back yard in utter silence just listening to the world around me, soaking up the milder rays of the warming sun (and some much needed vitamin D). And just from those few, precious moments that I gave myself for refreshment, my spirit feels calmed and quieted; it feels lifted up. I feel ... {more please!}

Simple Lemony Chicken & Spring Veggie Soup, A Little Sunshine In My Spoon

Simple Lemony Chicken & Spring Veggie Soup, A Little Sunshine In My Spoon post image

There's a quality to the late spring and early summer sunlight that is different from any other time of year; it's yellower, brighter and seemingly more deliberate, somehow. The sun shines down on us from a high point in the mellow blue sky in this warm season, and for me, takes on an almost “tangy” quality—a lemony and piquant “high note”. Late spring and early summer remind me of one of my favorite pieces of produce that I so often use to liven up so many ... {more please!}

Fragrant Curried Lentil Soup, and Being a Simmering Pot of Something Delicious

Fragrant Curried Lentil Soup, and Being a Simmering Pot of Something Delicious post image

It seems that the Creator has turned the heat up under me lately. I feel like I've been joyfully bubbling away—sputtering, bloop-ing and blipp-ing here and there—with a mild, low flame flickering beneath me, rather contently simmering on the stove very slowly making my way toward what would some day be my completion. But now, it seems that the flame has been increased ever-so-slightly, turned up from a 3 to a 4, and I'm feeling the heat a little bit more. I feel the contents within ... {more please!}

St. Patrick’s Favorite Guinness Beef Stew, The Perfect Excuse To Add A Bit Of Merriment & Lightness

St. Patrick’s Favorite Guinness Beef Stew, The Perfect Excuse To Add A Bit Of Merriment & Lightness post image

This time of year tends to feel a little like we're “trapped” in between seasons. Spring seems within arm's reach yet is just beyond the touch of our extended, wiggling fingertips; and winter, while on its slow saunter out the door, still feels the need to throw its weight around by landing one or two more hard-core punches to the gut in the form of frigid storms and icy cold temperatures that make one want to retreat like a mouse into a cozy hole in the ... {more please!}