Spiced bacon and pumpkin soup

Looks good!

taste of colours



  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 200g  onions, sliced
  • 1.3kg  pumpkin, peeled, seeded and diced
  • 125g  smoked back bacon, diced
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 750ml vegetable stock
  • salt and black pepper to taste
  • fresh parsley, to garnish
  • crusty bread rolls, to serve

  1. Heat the oil in a saucepan and add the onions. Stir to coat them with oil, then cover and cook them over a low heat for 5-10 minutes until they start to soften, stirring occasionally.
  2. Add the pumpkin, bacon and cumin to the pan. Stir, then cover and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add the stock, raise the heat and bring to the boil. Lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes, or until the pumpkin is tender.
  4. Purée the soup with a hand-held mixer or in a food processor. Season to taste, garnish with parsley and black pepper and serve, accompanied by a crusty bread roll, if…

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Diets Don’t Work

Same message. Eat better, eat less, feel better!

Wisconsin Wellness



You can’t turn on the TV, drive down the road or go to a party without  being confronted with America’s hottest obsession: weight. Diets are a billion-dollar industry; companies spend millions and millions luring you to try the latest diet (low carb, high protein, low fat, no fat, you name it) with promises that this will (finally!) be the solution-your shortcut to a thinner body. Advertising efforts also deeply affect our children, who develop distorted body images and are often on diets as early as nine or 10 years of age.

Our culture touts diet pills, celebrity workouts, convenience foods and trendy diets to help us achieve our desired weight, but these quick-fix solutions have backfired. America’s populace has reached its highest weight in history. About half of Americans are overweight; one-third are obese. Diets steer us away from our common sense and dip deeply into our pocketbooks while eliciting…

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Organic & Local Egg McMegans

Look for better quality foods, spend more per item, eat less, and feel better.

Wisconsin Wellness

Organic & Local Egg McMegans

McDonalds who?? (This recipe SERIOUSLY blows Egg McMuffins out the water!)

This quick treat features local, organic potatoes from the Kaukauna farmers market, and local organic eggs, butter & cheese from Trust Local Foods in Little Chute. I recommend using non-irradiated seasonings and sprouted grain muffins.

1. Simply saute the cut potatoes in olive oil on medium-high heat for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Sprinkle with dulse or kelp flakes, onion powder, turmeric powder, sea salt, and garlic powder. Add one whole chopped onion and turn the heat down to low-medium. Saute for another 5 minutes.

2. While the potatoes are cooking, pan fry your egg in a bit of olive oil. Toast your muffins and lightly butter, then place a slice of cheese on the bottom slice. When your egg is done, place on top of the cheese and top with the other muffin half. Enjoy!

Megan M. Kerkhoff

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Top Ten Goals for 2015

Just for fun, check it out! What are your goals?
Mine? Be healthier, be more productive, be calmer (big goal), and to just be a better person over all. Go to church more and be a better Christian (biggest goal). Be a better example for my family, my students, and my peers.


Love the Nerdy Book Club. Visit the site to find out what regular people like to read.

Nerdy Book Club

I am honored to be writing about the graphic novel winners for the Nerdy Book Club awards again this year. See, if you came to visit my classroom you would find a welcoming place—some comfortable old furniture, tables scattered around, and bookshelves encircling the room. We have a lot of books – over 3,000 – but if you ask any one of my students where the books reside that are checked out the most, every one of them would take you to the same spot: the graphic novel section.

Without question, graphic novels are the books most often circulated in my classroom. They are also the books that I have to replace the most frequently. Whether because they are loved so much they fall apart, or loved so much they don’t return to my library, I am frequently repurchasing these books.
Graphic novels are also the books I have to…

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The Last of the Baby Boomers and Kevin Costner

So, I turned 50 this year and have embraced the number. After all, that is all it is, right? I have never really cared about my age after 21, for obvious reasons. When I turned 18, the state changed its legal drinking age to 19. At 19 they went to 21, but it never mattered because I never was carded by the doorman. I always looked older than my actual years, until I turned 21 that is. After 21 I was carded at the grocery store buying a bottle of Asti Spumante! At first, I was in a huff, I was over 21!

At 50, I give the clerk a hard time for NOT carding me! Oh, the irony.

When my school principal announced to the school that I was a birthday girl my students sang Happy Birthday with the change of each class. As a school library teacher I see multiple classes throughout the day. Usually, they sing me the song and the inevitable happens; a student asks if I am really 21. The running joke is when we have a birthday announced for a staff member, we are all 21. I am a very honest person in regards to my age as it never fazed me one way or another. So, they asked and I ask them to guess. In years past students have guessed 21 to 36 and I have smiled, vainly patting myself on the back and thanking my mother’s DNA. This year the guesses were markedly higher but still under the actual number I proudly carry.

Finally, I reveal my age and a new inevitable has taken place. Instead of saying, “Wow, you don’t look that old!” my students are now saying, “Wow, you’re the same age as my grandma!”

Grandma? Grandma? What? Where? When??

I realize I did not start birthing babies at a tender age but really, grandmas are 50 now?! These kids are 8 or 9 years old! Really? My child is 22 and she is much too young to be married or providing me with grandchildren! What is wrong with these people!

Sure, now I need glasses sometimes and my arms are not always long enough to read the diminutive writing on the sides of bottles and boxes, but grandma age?  I have a few aches and pains but that is associated with Lyme Disease NOT age, really!

You may be wondering why Kevin Costner is in my title, yes? Well, Mr. Costner is gracing the cover of my husband’s AARP magazine (he is old and can have a subscription). Not only is Kevin’s gorgeous mug on the cover but John Stamos is featured. Like, really? When did he get old enough to be in AARP Magazine? Who else has gotten old all-of-a-sudden-like?

This made me curious. Who else turned the big 5-0 this year with me and a couple of my long time girlfriends?

Nicholas Cage, for one, but he looks like he has a few more miles on him than I do, right? Penelope Ann Miller, do I even remember who she is? Mariska Hargitay is looking pretty awesome! Bridget Fonda, Laura Linney, Glenn Beck (really?), Christopher Eccleston, Matt Damon & Rob Lowe (still looking good), Elle Macpherson (talk about DNA), Tracy Chapman, Melissa Gilbert, Lenny Kravitz, Gloria Reuben, and s many more. Obviously, 1964 was a very loving year!

I feel like I am in good company; however, my girlfriends at 50 are better than they were at 20. We have great kids, and some grand-kids (not me, of course, I am too young for that).

So I will read my err, my husband’s copy of the old fogy magazine because it is actually pretty cool to be in the same group as Uncle Jesse (John Stamos) and George Lopez.

Proud to be 50 and young enough to enjoy it!

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