yummy dishes

So I saw these dishes in TJ Maxx last week and had an immediate want-want-want reaction. I filled my shopping cart with plates, bowls, cups, and saucers picturing how cute they'll be for Christmas, Valentines, 4th of July and every other Sunday. As I strolled up to the front of the store, I was struck by the fact that I DO NOT NEED THESE DISHES, no matter how beautiful they are (or what a good price). I had this naggy voice in my head saying, "Is this a want or a need?" So I went back to the dishes aisle and put them all back, except for one dinner plate and one soup bowl. Which I use for my broiled cheese sandwiches at lunch. And I eat with a big smile.

The perfect antidote to depression caused by rain or snow is a take-out bowl of Olive Garden soup - I love the Pasta e Fagioli. I brought it home and placed the take-out bowl inside my pretty red bowl and enjoyed an early dinner. That soup is so good that I thought there must be a recipe on the internet - and yes there are lots. The following recipe sounded good whether you crockpot it or just cook it on the stovetop.

Olive Garden Pasta e Fagioli Soup in a Crock Pot

(Copycat recipe from recipezaar.com)

The website says: This tastes exactly like the pasta e fagioli soup at the Olive Garden. Wonderful!

SERVES 12 -14 - this is a big recipe, can be halved.



  1. Brown beef in skillet. Drain fat from beef and add to crock pot with everything except pasta.
  2. Cook on low 7-8 hours or high 4-5 hours.
  3. During last 30 min on high, add pasta. OR even better, cook pasta on the stovetop and add as you are serving the soup.