Food Pictures From This Week and Some of My Scattered Thoughts That May or May Not Make Sense

Below you will find a random assortment of pictures for the past three days of feeding the YC Ladies’ Soccer Team. I wasn’t able to take pictures of everything, simply because there wasn’t time. But here’s what I was able to capture:

Sunday night I made a big roaster oven full of roast and carrots.  This container was empty at the end of the night. :)

Here we have an almost overflowing pot of Cream Cheese Corn. This is always a hit when I feed a crowd. Although with this and the mashed potatoes and the rolls, it was a compete carb overload. Not sure what I was thinking!!? Especially since the team had to run three miles a few hours after eating this meal. ;)

But speaking of rolls…uh…funny story. I made these during the afternoon, but got the “brilliant” idea to put a lid on them and put them into the fridge to stop the rising so that I could bake them later at meal time.  This plan didn’t quite go as I intended it to go. The rolls didn’t stop rising in the fridge like I told them to. Therefore, when I pulled them out at 5:00 to bake them, I saw, much to my dismay, that they had all grown up together and “burst” at the top of the lid. I baked them anyway, hoping for the best. The girls walked into our house, smelled the rolls baking and got ever so excited. I gave them a half grin and told them not to get their hopes up because the rolls were quite…scary and that they were having severe issues. Well, one pan turned out not looking so bad (the pan on the right in the pic below) – but then they sunk when I pulled them out of them oven and were very doughy in the middle. Sad.  The others (the ones on the left) looked like a big 9×13 cake. Good grief. I ended up slicing them like corn bread and the girls gobbled them up. They even gobbled up the doughy rolls. Wow, they are the sweetest girls ever. Love them.

Look at these pitiful rolls…

Here, would you like a little peak at these delightful girls of whom I speak? I love them all and am so thankful to have this opportunity to get to know them and to treat them to home cooking.

We served the meal at our house Sunday night, and they overflowed into our yard and porch. (Monday and Tuesday we fed them in our church fellowship hall so I’d have more oven space.)

Well now, speaking of the ovens in our church kitchen/fellowship hall (and of my cooking goof-ups this week)…

It is never fun to try to use a new oven for the first time when you are feeding 35 people. But alas, I decided to try the cool convection oven at church for the first time, supposing it to be an efficient way to make four pans of Crunchy Ranch Chicken.

The meal was to be served at 6:00. The chicken, according to my calculations, should have been done at 5:59. I stared at it. I glared at it. I screamed at it. None of these tricks helped it to cook quickly enough. But hey, you can see my picture-taking-reflection in the oven, so that’s kinda fun, even if I was mad at the oven for taking so long to bake my chicken.


The girls were very sweet and patient while they waited for the meal to be served, munching on grapes and relaxing their tired muscles. I believe we were finally able to serve the meal at 6:25. They felt like it was worth the wait and came back for seconds and thirds.

I was excited to discover that Rice and Veggie Stir Fry is a very easy dish to make for a crowd. I had made the rice that afternoon at home. I had also stir-fried the veggies that afternoon at home. I simply rewarmed it all together with soy sauce once I got to the church kitchen. SO easy. And it’s a perfect dish to serve with the (slow cooking) Crunchy Ranch Chicken.

 Here are the Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies I made for the gal who can’t eat gluten. 

Tonight I made a double batch of Butterscotch Bars which are a favorite of the team.

The girls were thrilled to see all the loaves of homemade bread to go with tonight’s Lasagna, Italian Salad, and Green Beans. 

I loved every minute of cooking for these girls and I can’t wait to watch them play ball in a couple of weeks. Go Lady Panthers!!

And now I’m going to put my feet up for a while, maybe sleep in a little in the morning, and enjoy some leftovers while I take a day off from cooking. :)


  1. becki says

    thanks so much for including your “goof ups”!! havent been following you very long. i am trying very very hard to transition to a whole foods lifestyle for my family of 5. it is encouraging that even a pro like you has days and meals that dont always turn out as planned. even more encouraging is the Godly attitude and loving heart you carry through it all!! thanks for all you do to make our lives easier and our families healthier!!


  2. Tania says

    I moved in a house with a convection oven and can’t figure it out! My stuff always takes longer and I thought they were supposed to speed up the cooking??


    Laura Reply:

    That’s what I was told too, so in an effort to not serve dried out chicken, I started it a little later than I would have. Big mistake! :)


    Lana Reply:

    I have a convection oven too and it doesn’t seem to lessen cooking time for me either. It does cook more evenly and brown better though.


  3. Dee Jarvis says

    hopefully the GF eater didn’t eat the rice with the soy sauce or you used GF soy sauce!


    Laura Reply:

    I used GF soy sauce! :)


  4. melanie says

    thank you for posting your great ideas gone bad. it is good to know that everything you do doesn’t turn out every time. i am inspired by your blog to do more cooking, but also sometimes feel inadequate because I can’t seem to get it together. i really feel like i have accomplished something when i get a meal…any meal… onto the table. it’s a struggle. i don’t know how you do all that you do! thanks for all your ideas and inspiration!


    Laura Reply:

    You don’t have to have it all together, you just have to do your best! And trust me, I could never keep up with this pace for long. Today, I’m whipped! :)


  5. Christa says

    What is that oven you have? I’m so jealous. You can have your own business with an oven like that!


    Laura Reply:

    No, it’s not my oven. That’s the convection oven in our church kitchen. I just have a regular oven at my house.


  6. Crista says

    sounds like you had a fun and rewarding time…I don’t think there is one recipe I have tried of yours that I haven’t loved…in fact I loved every recipe so far that I bought all of your ecookbooks and then some…yours is my favorite blog and I tell everyone about it all the time


    Crista Reply:

    kind of sounds like I am sucking up huh? LOL


  7. Charlotte Moore says

    I have a convection oven also. It seems to do fine. I usually only have 1 pan of cookies or rolls in at a time though. Maybe it was because there was so much in the oven.

    You need a vacation now my dear.

    GOD BLESS!!!


  8. Erika says

    Laura, now that we are on a whole foods diet, I can tell you that even your mess-ups taste way better than what most of those students have grown up on, and way better than college food! No wonder they gobbled it all up! What a blessing you are to them in bringing a little bit of “home” to their college days, and ministering to them by passing on to them homemaking wisdom. You know, older women teaching younger women. What an opportunity! God bless!


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