The soup can be prepared in advance up to point 6 but don’t add the pasts. Leave to infuse the flavours which will improve if prepared in advance. To reheat bring to a simmer and add the pasta and continue as above. You can make it vegetarian by taking out the bacon and using veggie stock or water.
You can use up odds and ends from dired pasta packets. If they are all different shapes put them in a tea towel and bash them with a rolling pin to make them the same sort of size.
You can do all sorts of swaps here – swap the bay for chopped rosemary or thyme. Use other veggies like leek or courgette or see what is in season and swap things in and out. Use any stock you have to hand – fresh stock is great but a humble stock cube will do just fine.
If you have no pasta use rice instead, arborio works well or long grain. If you want it carb free just leave the pasta out. All great alternatives.