Category Archives: Pets

Tidbits

DSC_0414 (1600x1060)Nachos!  Sometimes I have a little ground beef left over, not enough for burgers, but plenty for something like this.  I make my own seasoning for taco style meat.DSC_0411 (1600x1060)Mrs J thought Boston cream pie would be nice.  It ended up tasting much better than it looked before the hot  ganache covered covered a few errors.  This is as close a look as I dare to show.  Why is it not called Boston cream cake?  Mystery!DSC02390 (1600x1060)Puppies! Momma dog came to the shelter pregnant and dropped this healthy litter of six.DSC02385 (1600x1060)This pup is named Spicy, and is one of several that were removed from a hoarder.  She seems to be OK but some of her sibs are still shy.DSC_0398 (1600x1060)Hard to beat bbq’d chicken and grilled corn on the cob.DSC_0416 (1600x1060)Not as classic a combo as with grilled cheese but the tuna salad sammy went quite well with the tomato soup.

Bixby Diaries: Chillin’ an Relaxin’

Chillin' and relaxin'

I looked up from desk today to see the Beast chillin’. That’s fine little one, you just relax while I put in a few more hours to pay for your dog food.

Chillin' and relaxin' 2f

Just a quick update. Bixby hurt his leg last week. I’m assuming from jumping off the couch or bed. How a 140 lb dog can get so much air boggles my mind. But he can leap twice his height from a standing position. I’ve cut down on walks until it feels better. He put more weight on it today, so probably by the end of this week we’ll back to our regular routine.

I special ordered him a 32-inch collar because nothing else fits well. Also a new harness and leash. The leash has a padded handle which came highly recommended for big dogs.

Chillin' and relaxin' 3

He turns 11-months old this weekend. I have his “surgery” schedule for the first week of June. I would have waited longer, but he’s not handling the testosterone well – nothing aggressive – but he is an alpha dog already and add those hormones and it does create some issues. For his bones and muscles a little longer would have been better, but for his emotional success, now is the time. I probably don’t have to tell you that after what happened to Missy, I’m more than a little anxious about this. It will be a long day.

Yesterday, he was literally in the dog house (his crate) after dragging me across the yard to see the Great Dane next door. He knows dragging is a no-no. I was working at my desk and every once in a while I’d hear this big SIGH and then he’d blow air out his big jowls – his version of pouting. I love this dog. Can’t believe he’ll be a year old soon.

Paw print

 

Tidbits

DSC_5270 (1600x1060)The hummers finally showed up in some force.  There are enough of them around I have to keep an eye on the feeders lest they run dry.20150415_175837 (1600x1060)I’m always losing those info tabs that ID the plant so I hit upon the idea to take a picture of each one with my cell phone.  Might not be foolproof but it can’t hurt.DSC_5266 (1600x1060)Bea is fond of turning our pots into kitteh beds.  I have two small basil plants in this one and she managed not to crush either one.  Yay!DSC_0317 (1600x1060)I had Italian sausage leftover from the last pizza so I combined that with some ground beef in a meatloaf the other day.  Worked out pretty well!  This was an ad hoc recipe:  Milk, an egg, bread crumbs, chopped parsley, chopped onion, garlic, and salt/pepper – bake in a 325 oven for about an hour in a bread loaf pan.  The dressing is ketchup and Sweet Baby Ray’s.DSC_0321 (1600x1060)The best reason to make meatloaf is the prospect of using the leftovers in a sammich.  Mmm…DSC02274 (1600x1200)Thread needs more kitteh!  This is Sweet Pea, a 5 month old kitteh girl.DSC02278 (1600x1200)That was hard work!  Nap time…DSC_0313 (1600x1060)I’ve been perfecting my braising method for these baby back ribs.  I do these in a 300 degree oven in a covered foil pan, after applying a dry rub, for about 3 hours or so.  A cup of beef broth helps to keep them moist.  During the last 20 minutes I brush them with a BBQ sauce, crank up the heat, and leave them uncovered to set the glaze.  Still working on the rub recipe but is has ground coriander, black pepper, kosher salt, garlic and onion powders, brown sugar, and a few other things that look good at the time.

Dronz!!

 

St Francis CARE

Bixby Diaries: Squirrels are Evil

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And robins are suspect, too. Hi! I’m almost 10 1/2 months old and life is a blast. Well, except for the squirrels. I’m up to 135 lbs and tower over my person when I stand on my back legs and hug her. We’ve been having some adventures. My person is looking for a new house and when she finds one she likes, we walk around the neighborhood and meet people. It’s always fun.

I’ve been doing pretty good at meeting people, lately, too. We went for a long walk the other day and my person let me meet everyone who wanted to pet me. I love to meet new people, but a lot of the time, my person would make me sit and hold while they walked on by. Now I don’t pull or jump at them, so I get a lot more pets. And people always say how handsome I am.

TaMara’s note: A month makes a huge difference. I’d say about 90 percent of the time he is on his best behavior with people, so I’m much more relaxed about letting them approach him and pet him. He still has moments, but I’m good at anticipating it and heading off interactions. Which is good, because everyone wants to say hi.

Bixby and Me 2

Now about those squirrels. They are evil. They sit on the trunks of the trees on my walks, right at eye level and tease and taunt me. Sometimes I just can’t help myself I have to try and get them. That gets me in trouble, because I’m not suppose to pull my person halfway across the street. But. I. Hate. Them. And robins, oh they are just so, robin-y. I don’t like them either. But I saw my very first Great Blue Heron, flying above us and it was soooo cool I had to stop and watch until it landed in a tree. Then we saw an Osprey catch a fish. Dove in the water, pulled it out. I was so excited I almost ran right into the pond myself.

TaMara’s note: Yeah, don’t know what it is about the robins. He’s great with the Canada geese on our walks, so good in fact, they cross the path right in front of him, much to his delight. And ducks and chickens are all on his list of friends. But robins…not so much. He really does like those big birds, though.

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I had a play date today with my best bud Kodiak. It is sooo much fun to run around with someone who is okay with rough housing. It’s hard being the biggest boy on the block (ok, not really, because my next door neighbor is a big black and white Mantle Dane, but he’s older and not big on rough housing). It’s good to be able to play the way I want and not get in trouble.

One last thing, a few weeks ago, one of my litter mates, Missy, left us. She was a kitty, but I still thought of her as one of mine. I miss her and still look for her under the table on her chair. My person was so sad, I tried everything to make her smile. I’d lay under her desk and put my head on her foot. Then I’d roll over, paws up until she smiled. Finally, I had to do something drastic, so I climbed up on the couch next to her desk and put my head next to her computer and turned upside-down till she laughed. That felt good. Then she told me I had to be nice to Jake because Missy was his mama and he missed her. So I’ve done my best to be friends with Jake, even though I’m kind of jealous of him. But I think it makes him feel better and I know it makes my person feel better.

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My person bought me a new food dish today and I can’t wait to try it out. I’m pretty hungry after my big day. So I’m off to eat. Hope you got some good stuff in your food dishes today, too. – Bixby

TaMara’s note: Had some issues with his plastic food toys, so I’m trying something new. Have I mentioned how much I adore this pup? He’s growing up into such a great, sweet dog. It’s hard work most days, but I think it’s worth it.

Paw print

Feeding Bixby

(There will be a flurry of posts…been busy all week and slowly I would write up stuff, but it wasn’t until today that I had photos to go with them….)

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Bixby is fed with food puzzles. I use four different toys to give him variety. The problem I’m having is two-fold, one is he’s strong enough to damage the plastic and the plastic is causing him facial issues, including breakouts and scrapes. He was starting to look like Emma was abusing him daily.

I was trying to think what I could do to fix this. I really like idea of meal time taking him a half hour to eat and that he has to work for it.  So I wandered around the farm store

This is what I came up with, so far, it’s working well.

New food dish

He rolls it around and the food falls out fast enough so he doesn’t get discouraged, but still slow enough that it’s a challenge. I thought it was a pretty clever solution. I’ll probably still use the green plate (top photo) and retire the two rolling balls. I also have a 3 QT pitcher that works well. That should be enough to keep him interested.

Paw print

Tidbits

Wow, six days since the last post!  I am so lazy!  We have been busy in the kind of laid back style that meets our definition of lazy.  We installed a new yard hydrant near the back barn to replace one that wasn’t sited just right and was getting increasingly difficult to open and close. 20150416_130454 (Copy)The old hydrant was in the back, next to the mulch, we are bringing it closer to the front of the barn.  It was wetter than ideal but we managed to get the ditch dug and the hydrant hooked up and tested out.DSC_5243 (Copy) We were tardy getting a hummingbird feeder up although it hasn’t been exactly overrun since we got it going – we saw one the other day.  The “Eskimo” Viburnum is just now hitting its peak with tons of compound white blossoms, reminiscent of Hydrangias.  DSC_0283 (1600x1060)We’ve been working the grill pretty hard.  This sammich is from country style ribs that smoked for a few hours.  They got a dry rub and a taste of a BBQ sauce, then were chopped and reheated in a skillet atop the stove to get a nice little crisp going on the edges.  The potato salad is another batch of the loaded potato salad that has become our fave picnic style side dish.DSC02232 (1600x1200)This is an older female cat, 5 yo, an owner surrender.  Mrs J says she is starting to come around from the trauma of separation.  We have no info on why the previous owner dropped her off, could be any number of legitimate reasons, and it’s good that she wasn’t just turned out on her own.  We see that a lot.
DSC_5244 (Copy)I have a start on the herb garden.  From the bottom:  Basil, chives, parsley and another to feed to the caterpillars, oregano, rosemary, and thyme. DSC_5245 (Copy)In the back are two determinate variety tomatoes, iirc they are “Mountain Fresh”, one has been broken over and may need replacement although there is still a leaf left intact with the rest of the stem.  In the foreground are various peppers:  Sweet, hot, and ornamental.  I have sweet bananas, serranos, cayenne, and a sweet Italian red pepper, “Carmen”, that looks similar to the banana peppers in the little photo.  I started some fernleaf dill but it’s looking puny today.  Katie and Jack are keeping a lookout for squirrels and those geese that have found where Mrs J leaves the corn for the deer.DSC_5246 (Copy)I do the veggies and herbs, Mrs J keeps up the flowers.  She has the biggest job.  Our 2002 ATV started acting up, right in the beginning the season, so we opted for this shiny, new 2014 model.  I told the dealer guy to show me one that is as close to the old one as he had, and he came very close.  He was tickled at the low mileage on the old one – we don’t do trail rides, just haul stuff around the place, run to the mailbox, and visit the neighbors on occasion.DSC_0271 (1600x1060)We’ve been eating sammiches or dropping by the local Chinese buffet.  We hit the buffet yesterday at the perfect time, I think, everything was freshly cooked and waiting for the lunch crowd, which we beat.DSC02241 (1600x1200)I rarely put up a photo of a large dog, Mrs J works inside with kittens and puppies, but she took this one of a stray that a local police officer brought in.  He said he would rather St Francis had it that the folks at the county humane shelter down the road.  Mrs J says they are required by law to post photos of strays, she posted the photo to the shelter’s Facebook page to be shared around, hoping the owner will see it and step up.

Sammich Pr0n – BBQ Pork

DSC_0237 (1600x1060)Another homemade bun with some roast pork and Sweet Baby Ray.  I made the eggs with a dab of the tzatziki, mayo, and a whiff of sour cream.  There are chives in there as well as the dill from the tzatziki.DSC02186 (1600x1060)Bonus Kitteh!  Toby fled under the couch during a thunderstorm, here he is checking to see if it was safe to emerge.

A Little Missy

Missy Elizabeth1

 I was putting together tonight’s recipe exchange and found this on my camera. I took it just a week or so ago. Love that little tail.

row-of-hearts

Bixby Diaries: Growing Up Fast

B & K the Race is on

Just a quick update this week. Bixby is 127 lbs now and doing great. We still struggle with a couple of things, mostly pulling on the leash to get to dogs and people. He wants to meet and love everyone. We continue to work on it and he’s very proud when he remembers not to pull. It’s adorable.

Bixby and Kodiak April 2015a

After a very rough week we needed a play date to blow off some steam. We headed up to LFern’s property where the dogs could run to their heart’s content. The surprise for LFern, Kodiak and me was how big Bixby had gotten since our last visit a few months ago. But Kodiak still ruled the yard and Bixby was happy to follow his lead.

Here’s their first meeting, not long after Bixby came to live with me:

Bixby and Kodiak Sept 2014

He was such a wee little thing. Not so much now:

Bixby and Kodiak 2a

I’m so pleased with how far we have come. It took me a while to understand what I was doing that created situations where he would get totally crazy (and run away). He was overstimulated. And instead of trying to wear him out with lots of activities, only to have it backfire, I started to restrict his input – no more tag, tug or walks on a long lead. We switched to three short walks a day, instead of one long walk, used the crate as a quiet place where he could calm down when visitors arrived, and I often had to use my ‘stern’ voice.

A lot of it seemed counter-intuitive, but it works and without breaking his beautiful spirit. The more I am able to communicate to him what I’m looking for, the happier he gets. The sweeter he gets. It just took me a while of watching him to see where I was going in the wrong direction. He is always doing the best he can. I believe that over time we’ll be able to continue tag, tug and letting him take the lead on walks again.

Bixby March 2015 Sleepy

This is how he spends his afternoons by my desk when I’m working. Terrific office mate. He’ll be nine 10 months (denial or typo, you decide) soon, maybe I can get him to write an update then. – TaMara

<3

Missy Miss 9 12

<3

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