Category Archives: Pets
The cat tree is a donation. The top kitty is Biscuit, she has been out for adoption and then returned for some reason. The other cat is a male.A couple of new kittens, no info on these.Top ‘o the world, Ma! He’s named Pit Bull Kitty, he was attacked by a pit bull to earn that moniker. He’s a year old.This is JR, he may be part Maine Coon, the next picture shows it better:The next two puppies are fresh out of a flea bath and they seem to be extra pleased to be free of them. Mrs J says they were an owner surrender. The county told him he had too many so he turned them over to the shelter.Mrs J says they don’t really know much about the breed mix – both of them are males.This one is a girl, her momma was a mini-daschund……and this is her sister. Oddly, the mother has been adopted already, before her babies. This is Simone, a terrier mix. She does well on a leash and is happy in a lap. Nice new haircut!
Been terribly busy, but got a few good shots this week. He’s growing so fast and so handsome. We have a great time together.
Despite this peaceful tableaux, these two go after each other like, well, cats and dogs. It is clearly a struggle for Alpha. Bixby lost that battle before he ever arrived, but it may take him a bit longer to realize it. To his credit, his respect for Emma is evident and he’s always playful with her, though, not always remembering his lumbering size. She, on the other hand, means business and has used her claws a couple of times. Mostly, she’s more hiss than bite. But they always sleep together.
Crazy-assed dog. Makes me laugh every day.
On a food blog, when isn’t Tater an ingredient? When she’s a dog. Friends of blog, Larilyn and Alton (not that one) adopted a dog this last week. And when I say adopted, I mean flew her over several states to get her to Colorado, because that’s the kind of people they are. She showed up while they were on vacation and a month later no one had claimed her, so she’s now officially a Coloradoan.
And Bixby is completely charmed.
That’s about all I could get of them, the rest of the time they were just a blur through the yard.
Photo by JeffreyW
I’m going to repeat some favorite soup recipes tonight. I’m working on a few new pumpkin recipes, but they are not ready for prime time this week. So you’ll have to make do with repeats.
When I’m busy, soup is the thing. I make big batches and they are quick and easy to reheat and add a sandwich or a piece of grilled chicken for a fast dinner or lunch. I could eat soup everyday during cold weather. JeffreyW is no slouch in the soup department either, so there are over 200 recipes on the blog of the soup variety.
For tonight, here are some soups worth repeating:
Cream of Chicken Soup, recipe here.
Two Broccoli Cheese Soup variations are here.
Tomato-Spinach is one of my favorite hearty winter soups, recipe here.
And combining two recent recipe exchanges, JeffreyW does Bean Soup in a Frybread Bowl, recipe and yummy photos here.
For the pet lovers, there is a Bixby diary this week. He’s four months old now and takes up most of my spare time. Which explains why I’m more often outside and not in the kitchen cooking. Also, I’m having great success with both dog and cat food dispenser/toys, that make them work for their food, story here, in case you are looking for a good way to entertain your pets.
What’s on your menu for this beautiful fall weekend? Do you have a favorite way to make grilled cheese? Do you grill any other types of sandwiches – either the grown-up panini style or something of the more guilty pleasure type, like grilled peanut butter and jelly?
Tonight’s feature recipe was one of the first menus I ever published…and also the first time I made my own tomato soup.
Hearty Tomato Soup
- 28 oz canned tomatoes*
- 1 tsp crushed garlic
- 8 oz carrots
- 2 stalks celery
- 3 green onions, including greens
- 1 tsp basil
- ¼ tsp oregano
- salt & pepper to taste
- 2 cups milk
- 2 tbsp whole wheat flour
2 quart saucepan
In a blender, mix tomatoes, garlic, carrots, celery & onions. Blend until liquid. In saucepan, combine tomato mixture with spices, heat over medium heat, stirring constantly. Let bubble (don’t let boil or use high heat, it will scorch) for 5 minutes. Add flour to cold milk, blend until smooth, add to soup. Let bubble again, reduce to low heat and let simmer for 15 minutes. Stir occasionally.
* This is the time to use up any left over garden tomatoes, instead of canned. Blend until you have 4 cups of crushed tomatoes.
Totally Awesome Grilled Cheese
For each sandwich:
- 2 slices whole wheat bread (or favorite firm bread)
- Enough favorite cheese (Velveeta, cheddar cheese, Monterey Jack, etc. to cover bread (about 3 slices)
- Sliced Jalapeños (if you want some heat)
- 1 large slice of tomato w/dash of salt
- 1-2 tsp Mayonnaise or Miracle Whip
- Spray Oil
Spread salad dressing on both slices of bread and add ½ of the cheese to one slice of bread, place tomato & jalapenos on the cheese and top with remaining cheese and the other slice of bread, this keeps bread from getting soggy from the tomato. Lightly butter outside of both sides of the sandwich and grill in skillet sprayed with cooking spray or lightly oiled on medium heat until cheese is melted and bread is toasted. While it is grilling, press down hard with a spatula, “squishing” the sandwich. We don’t know why, but this makes them taste better. :-)
This arrived in time for Bixby’s lunch. It was a rousing success. It replaces me making them out of 2 liter soda bottles – which worked ok when I could reuse them for 3 or 4 meals. Now he destroys them in one meal.
He won’t be able to destroy this, that’s for sure. And if you spin it, food shoots out of it like a food sprinkler (I won’t do that again).
It easily holds two cups of his kibble and takes him a good half hour to eat. I kind of wished it had an adjustable size food hole, but since it’s so sturdy, I’m happy to give up that feature for durability. It’s weighted at the bottom (and it’s heavy) so that it wobbles to really engage him. He had a blast.
I will still give him the occasional soda bottle because he loves to destroy them. Something about smashing them down is fun for him and since he’s yet been able to tear into them, no small pieces to worry about him eating.
I bought one of these for the cats last spring. It was an instant hit. When I ordered Bixby’s Kong, I got two more of these so they can all play. I use them for a mix of treats/food. That way they can chase them around when they need a nibble between meals. Very sturdy and you can adjust the holes for treat size. Definitely would not stand up to puppy mouth, so I have to keep an eye on where they land. I usually put them up on the cat tree when not in use.
Hi again. I turned four months old this past weekend and my person says I’m terribly smart for my age. I know the commands: sit, stay, shake, stop, walk, heel, up and off. I’m working on come, but that one is harder because most times I just want to race around and around before I listen to that one. (TaMara’s note: My favorite command for him is, “Is that yours?” and he drops whatever he’s picked up that he shouldn’t be chewing on. Lately, he’ll even bring me whatever it is and is so proud when he gives me it.)
I’ve grown so much, I can’t sleep in my favorite office chair when my person goes to the office.
I love my walks now. My person takes me around the neighborhood and we meet all the neighbors and she takes me around the ponds and we hang out by the waterfall. I love water. My person says I can’t go into the water yet, because it’s still contaminated from last year’s flood. I wouldn’t know about that because, well I wasn’t even an idea yet. But best play toy ever, LFern, says she knows a place where I can go and run in tall grass, my favorite thing to do, and also play in the stream. I can’t wait.
My ears still do what they want. Someone told my person we look alike, I guess because my ears are always floppy and she has curly hair. I don’t see it. I mean, she doesn’t even have a tail. I get two frozen apples a day and a couple of frozen carrots a day and it really helps with my teething. I don’t even chew on my person anymore. Dr. Deb says I can have 6 cups of food a day now. Yay!
I’ve had some great play dates and I really like them. I hear I’m getting a new playmate next week and I can’t wait to meet her. I hope she likes me better than her brother does, because he never wants to play. But Auntie Larilyn thinks the new puppy will want to play with me, so I’m excited.
Had my last visit to Dr. Deb today. She says I look great. But, the shots she gave me have made me very tired, so this will be a short diary. I weigh 51 lbs now and stand 54 inches on my hind legs, which means I can reach up and kiss my person whenever I want. And I do that a lot. – Bixby
Bixby came to a meeting today, it’s been a while. He seemed surprised he no longer fit in his chair.
Here is his first week with me and his first day at the office. He fits nicely in the chair.
Look at that Great Dane profile. He’s my handsome, smart, sweet boy. I love him.
(Only had my cell phone with me, but the quality of the photos does not diminish his handsomeness. <3 )
Just a reminder: You can make a burrito out of nearly anything you can wrap a tortilla around. We had chicken chili with white beans a few days ago and the little dab of leftovers worked great with the addition of Monterey jack.I call this a “cuddle” of puppies. I like how the little guy with the white on his muzzle is framed in this picture.Mrs J likes banana bread so much that she buys bananas and lets them ripen just so she can make it. The one has raisins and pecans. I found a jar of apple butter on the pantry shelf, applesauce works well as an accompaniment but apple butter just goes it one better.Notice the subtle segue from apples to snakes? LOL Here’s your random wildlife, a small snake in the grass beside the walk this morning. I’m not sure what species it is but I would guess it’s a juvenile black rat snake. The mottled look fades over time.We made the last batch of tomatoes into soup and canned 7 quarts. I amazed myself with a practical application of arithmetic – I knew my canner would hold seven quart jars so I figured how many inches of juice I needed and let the tomatoes reduce at a simmer until it measured the correct depth. I won’t burden you with the formula lest I make a foolish error but if I remember correctly 7 US quarts is a tad over 5 inches in my 10″ pot, I think I went five and a quarter-ish, making a mark on a wooden spoon.I never said there wouldn’t be math! I did say there would be kittehs, though. They named this one Brock and he was adopted the next day after Mrs J posted this picture on the shelter’s facebook page.I’ll close out with a couple of sammiches, here’s a loaded chicken tenders sammy with some potato salad from the local Kroger deli.More sauerkraut than pastrami on this reuben. There wasn’t much pastrami left so I compensated a tad.
I’m back. It’s been a busy couple of weeks, so I’ll just hit the highlights.
My weigh in last week was 36.4 lbs, 21” at my shoulders and 32” inches from my head to my butt. I went to the Vet today for my next round of shots and weighed in at 40 lbs even. I love them there, they give me liver treats and make a big fuss. Could have done without Dr. D taking my temperature. Rude.
Everyone I meet says I have big feet. What do you think?
Dr. D says I’m going to start doing something called teething soon. I don’t know what that means, but I do know it means my person has apples and carrots in the freezer and they are yummy. My person says I’m growing like corn in summer. I had to get a new collar today and my person says pretty soon I’m not going to fit in the crate in the car anymore. (TaMara’s note: on Saturday, he fit ok in the crate, on Monday, his head hit the top of it, it was a bit of shock)
Emma was caught sleeping with me. I didn’t want to mention it before but she does it a lot, I thought it was supposed to be a secret.
I had a great play date with my new big buddy Kodiak. He belongs to my favorite play toy, LFern. I love her.
I’ve been able to avoid morning walks, well until today, when my person said we’d have to start again, because I was a little too rambunctious in the morning. Whatever that means.
Speaking of mornings, found a great way to wake my person up. I leap up and then belly flop on her and give her wet kisses. Makes her laugh.
I like big slippers, I cannot lie, other big dogs might like sandals or boots, but I like the big fluffy treats. (Insert Sir Mix-a-Lot here) My person seems to find this unfortunate, so she decided to buy me another shower puff, which is great fun.
My person works too hard and I like to try and help her when I can. So now, in the mornings, I take the kitty litter bag to the trash. Makes me feel so proud to carry it down the stairs and out to the trash. It’s so much fun, I often don’t want to give it up right away, but eventually all fun games have to end. Or my person uses that voice.
I have a new crate that I like okay enough. When I’m in it, the cats come out a lot more and walk around and sniff at me. But this week, I think I spent a lot of time in it. My person says I’ve been “trouble” and it’s like I’m going through my “terrible twos” I’m not sure what that means, but she does say, “Bixby, why did you do that?” a lot.
I’ll let you in on a little secret; I do it because it’s fun. See you next week. – Bixby