Soup’s on. There’s nothing like a pot of warm soup to help you get through the final weeks of winter.

The aroma of homemade soup cooking on your stove will comfort your senses before it even warms up your body.

Homemade soup is a lot easier to make than you would think. Plus, it is much lower in sodium than the canned variety.

Try out one of these tasty and healthy soup recipes. If you have children, employ the tricks of the trade I am sharing on how to motivate your children to eat them without being picky.

Fireman Soup

As a child, my twin brother and I enjoyed playing fireman a lot. We would dress up in raincoats and use the vacuum hose to put out our pretend fires.

In order to entice us to lunch one day our mom came up with a brilliant idea — name the soup for lunch ‘Fireman Soup.’ From then on her ground beef and vegetable soup became termed ‘Fireman Soup.’ Follow this simple recipe from my mom, Helen Spaulding, to provide a healthy energizing soup to your playful children or your hard-working spouse. We’ve added tomato sauce to give it a red color, reminiscent of a fireman’s truck.

1 lb. lean ground beef

4 cups low sodium beef broth

1 cup water

1 (15 oz.) can tomato sauce

2 cups potatoes peeled and cut in cubes

2 cups vegetables as desired (The easiest and fastest method is to use frozen mixed vegetables)

½ cup sliced celery

2 cups coarsely chopped cabbage, if desired

1/2 tsp. pepper

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. onion powder or several chopped green onions

Brown the ground beef in a skillet over medium high heat. As it browns make sure to stir it so it ends up in small chunks. Drain fat.

In a large pot, bring the meat, beef broth, water and tomato sauce to a boil. Then add the potatoes, vegetables, celery, cabbage and spices. Turn the heat to medium-low and simmer for about 10 minutes, or until potatoes are tender.

Farmer Soup

I’ve created another fun and healthy soup experience.

You’ll delve into a soothing blend of protein and carbohydrates in this chicken, corn, carrot and celery soup made with milk added to the broth. If you’re feeding children, use the different ingredients to teach your children about different aspects of a farm.

Corn, carrots and celery can be grown in gardens or fields. Teach them about how these vegetables grow or about the difference between a garden and a field. Chickens are one of many farm animals.

Ask them if they can tell you other animals that live on farms or ask them what they think chickens eat. And see if your children can guess what makes the broth white.

When they get it right, have a discussion about different foods we eat that come from cows.

1 lb. of cubed chicken

4 cups chicken broth

2 cups milk or cream

1 cup sliced carrots

1 cup sliced celery

2 (15 oz.) cans sweet corn

1 tsp. parsley

1 tsp. basil

Cook the chicken in a skillet over medium high heat until cooked through. Meanwhile, bring your broth and milk to a boil in a large pot over high heat. Add the chicken, carrots, celery, corn and spices into the broth.

Turn the heat to medium-low and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until carrots can be easily pierced with a fork.

By the way, if you’re hungry for soup but not up for cooking this week, stop by the Williston Herald’s benefit chili dinner and bake sale Thursday, Feb. 28, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. or 6 to 8 p.m. at the James Memorial Center.

We are raising funds for an employee who needs financial help to cover medical expenses. Chili is $10 a bowl. Soup’s on.