1) Start by cutting all the kernels off your corn cobs. If you place the cob in a bowl before you cut, the kernels will fall into the bowl rather than scatter everywhere. Break the cobs in half and save them.
2) Dice the onion and add the butter to a large saucepan over medium high heat. When the butter is melted add the onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes.
3) Dice the celery, carrots, and hot pepper and add those to the onions along with the cobs from the corn. Add a pinch of salt and stir.
4) Cook for another few minutes until the carrots and celery are soft.
5) Turn the heat down to low/medium-low.
6) Add the cream, milk, and bay leaves and bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Make sure the dairy isn’t burning to the pan at all. It should take 15 minutes or so to come to a simmer.
7) Simmer for 30 minutes. Depending on how thick you want your soup, you can take the lid off the pot during this. I simmered for 20 minutes with lid on and 10 minutes with lid off.
8) Remove cobs and bay leaf, and add diced potatoes and cook for another 5 minutes until potatoes are soft.
9) Add corn, diced peppers, thyme, and taste for salt and pepper. Simmer for another minute or so and serve immediately. The corn and peppers should still be slightly crunchy.