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During our last trip to Virginia, we left out furry babies in the loving care of my husbands’ parents. They adore their furry-grandbabies so it was just right that we let our furry babies stay with them while gone for over a week. It was the first time our cavalier king charles spaniel actually stayed with them for so long – she’s usually attached to my side. But, she did really well with them considering she had a few daily walks and plenty of laps to go around for the duration of our trip. Both of our parents are from Michigan, so that meant a long drive to Michigan before and after our Virginia trip. What we do for our furry babies… After working in a veterinary hospital for four years though, I know the horrors that go on in those places and our furry babies will never step foot in one of those places. I’m sure there are good ones out there but it’s just not for our babies, I wouldn’t take my human babies to a place like that so I wouldn’t do it for the furry ones either, it’s just right that way.

Thankfully we were able to pick up some local produce from a farmers’ market and a grocery store that sells only locally farmed produce. Hooray! The farmer’s market that we go to is very hard to find if you aren’t a local, so we know everything is fresh and local. One of my favorite finds was a root vegetable called Parsnips, which I absolutely love! When I was young, my parents never served it to me so I never had the taste for them. After going vegan, I tried it for the first time and couldn’t get past the taste of soap. But, now that I have trained my tastebuds to enjoy vegetables more, I love them. I wish I could explain what they taste like but it’s unlike any other vegetable that I have come across; you just have to test it yourself and see.

Today it rained the entire day, which I love because it is not only soothing to listen to but it also is the perfect weather for soups. I had never heard of making a parsnip and apple soup but I just guessed they would pair nicely together. Or maybe it was the bushel of apples that we purchased in Michigan that also tempted me to make this soup. Whatever the reason, I have fallen in love with this tasty new soup choice. It is light but really is filling to a hungry person. (Trust me I ran 4 miles, biked 5 miles and lifted weights this afternoon so I was hungry!)

1.5 pds parsnip, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 large apple, coarsely chopped
4 c Vegan chicken broth (make sure it is MSG free)
3 cloves, coarsely chopped
4 sage leaves
1/4c parsley, optional (I planned on using this but we didn’t have any… )
1/2 small onion, coarsely chopped
2 potatoes (1lb), coarsely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 celery stalks, coarsely chopped
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1. Heat the oil in a large soup pot on the stove.
2. Toss in all the chopped vegetables, spice and etc, minus the broth. Saute until everything is looking slightly browned and soft.
3. Add the vegan broth and boil for about 5 minutes or until everything is soft and a fork will go through it all.
4. Toss all of it in a blender and give it a whirl.
5. Serve in a cute bowl or even a bread bowl. Yum!