In a large pot heat olive oil over medium heat.
Add in diced potatoes, carrots, onion and celery season with salt, pepper, and thyme and sauté for 3-4 minutes continually stirring. (this brings out the flavors of the veggies for a quick soup)
Add in grated or finely chopped garlic and sauté for another minute.
Cover veggies with water and broth, cover with a lid and simmer until veggies are tender- about 20-25 minutes. *you may need to add a little more liquid to cover veggies depending on how big your potatoes are.
After veggies are tender, with a pastry cutter or something similar, smash some of the potatoes leaving some big chunks.
Add in milk.
Add in about a cup of grated cheddar cheese (optional)
Reheat but don't bring to a boil.
Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and add more thyme if needed.
Optional toppings are shredded cheddar cheese, diced green onions, fresh thyme.