Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Wednesday: July 31st

Does anyone else's boy pup prescribe to the notion, "If it doesn't move first, pee on it!"?

Monday, July 29, 2013

A tail to tell....

     Most of you who read this blog realize by now that I'm an elementary school teacher.  And while my heart beats for rescued dogs, it pounds for kids who fight against all odds.   Today's post is about one of those kids:
     I've never met her, and because she just turned 4 this past Friday, neither her name nor her picture will appear here.  Her and her families privacy is being factored into this post.  But, quite honestly, she could be any young child in any hospital anywhere in the world.  She's the grandchild of one of my mother's coworkers and she has been diagnosed with leukemia.  It's bad enough that she spent the first month post diagnosis in the hospital.  The port used for receiving her chemo treatments is in her neck.  For most other patients, their chest is used.
     She's home now, going to the hospital when she needs to for doctors appointments, treatments, and the like.  But because her immune system is so compromised by cancer, she can't do anything a "normal" 4 year old would do.  That cool new movie from Pixar about the racing snail, the family is waiting for it to come out on DVD.  The local swimming pool and swimming lessons are off limits.  Running around at the playground?  Don't even think about it!
     And, funny enough, the mail carrier is her hero.   She's a "normal" kiddo when it comes to getting mail just for her.  Never mind the fact that is has be to be put in the freezer for a week or 2 first to kill any germs that may come with the mail.  It's her's after that because it came in the mail for her.
     Like the rest of us, she loves puppies, dogs, kittens, and cats.  So the first thing to get tossed into the mail for her was a bunch of puppy and kitten stickers.  The next thing that will go into the mail in a weeks time is a collection of pics of Annie and Paul.  If anyone else is interested in e-mailing me things to put into an envelope for her and mailing them off, AnnieNPaulMom at gmail dot com.  Thank you.  

Friday, July 26, 2013

Ice Cream!!!

     Last year, when I was trying to start a dog treat company, I was often awake at 2 am to bake during the coolest part of the day.  This includes the 2 weeks of 100+ degree days when the "cool time" was 85.
     As a result, I figured out how to make puppy ice cream!  Ok, all honesty I call it ice cream, but it's more like frozen yogurt with peanut butter tossed in.  Besides popping it into ice cream cups, it can also be put into kongs or tuxes and frozen.

1 large (quart sized) container of plain yogurt
3 cups smooth creamy peanut butter
     Unsweetened apple sauce
     Canned pumpkin (not the one labeled for pumpkin pie)
     Strawberry/original cream cheese.

I'm lucky enough to have a stand mixer.  I tend to drop the yogurt in and let it smooth out with the mixer on low for a moment before I add in the peanut butter.  You can, of course, add in more or less peanut butter as above.  Let the mixer work on medium for a few moments blending the yogurt and peanut butter together.  Then add in any of the optional ingredients.  You want to add these in slowly about a half cup at a time.  The apple sauce and the canned pumpkin will thin the mix while the cream cheese will thicken it.

I use a cookie scoop when it's done being mixed to put it into ice cream cups that can be purchased at Michaels (the craft store) for about a buck or 2.  

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Monday, July 22, 2013

Itchy Annie

     Yep, it's that time of year again.  The sun is out, I'm away from school, the grass is growing, the humidity is through the roof, and Annie is allergic to whatever the heck is in the air.
     The food we fed her had to be switched around because the Purina Pro Plan we were feeding them has been discontinued.  So the switch has been made to:
   With no corn, wheat, soy, artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives, it's a good alternative to what we had been feeding her.  We're pretty sure she's not allergic to chicken on it's own because she doesn't seem to have any problems when she gets chicken with a bland diet.  But still in the summer time, she continues to itch.  
     Annie and Paul get 2 bathroom breaks and 2 walks a day.  After each one, Annie has her paws and legs wiped down with baby wipes.  I've washed both collars, leashes, bedding, and vacuumed.  Annie and Paul are both being bathed about once a month (trying not to dry out their skin.)  

     And the itch goes on.....

     Anyone out there have any more ideas of how to slow down the itch?

Friday, July 19, 2013

ABC Blog D & E

I'm not the worlds best cook/chef and I defiantly fly by the seat of my pants more times than I care to think of.  Dorie Greenspan has a great blog with lots of different tips and recipes and she's published several cook books along the way.
This is another micro blog .  They only blog on facebook and they average a post every few days.  Usually they're filled with cute pics and heartwarming tales of tails.  It's a nice surprise to find in your faebook feed when you've had a really bad day.

This is one of the blogs I love to read that has a small following.  Their based out of Erie, PA and they write about their dogs Tess and Edison.  (I Love the name Edison!).  

Elle is another micro blog about being a working therapy dog in Roanoke Rapids, NC.  She works in retirement communities, libraries, and anywhere else in her community. 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013


So according Dr. Lori Pasternak of Helping Hands, one of Paul's teeth has an infection (discovered when he got his teeth cleaned on Monday).  So he's got an antibiotic he's taking twice a day for a week (included in the flat rate with teeth cleaning).  Annie's doing what Annie does in the summer: itch, itch, itch; so Benadryl for her.  I'm going through spoons full of peanut butter like crazy; so, for today, it's plain Lickety Split from 3 Dog Bakery to help the medicine go down.  Take a guess which one is for which.  Hint: think of their collar colors.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Dognomics: Consumption Smoothing

     When we first met Annie, she had 2 foster sisters, Belle and Sadie.  Annie didn't know it, but she was about to greatly offend Sadie by digging up chew's that Sadie had buried in the back yard.  It seems Sadie had kind of come across the idea of Consumption Smoothing all on her own.
Sadie in her back yard.

    To get this one, you kind of have to roll with the idea that while we humans use money, Sadie thought of her chew's as money.  She'd get a chew, sit down and work on it for a moment, then take the rest, sneak into the back yard, and burry it (save it).  A couple weeks later when no one was handing out chew's at that moment, Sadie would go into the back yard and dig up her old chew.  According to her Dad, D, it would look disgusting, but she'd act like it was the best think ever.  (kind of accumulated interest).
D with Annie on the left, Sadie the short tri colored one in the middle, Paul on the rightish, and who knows who on the far right.  D is loved by all of the beagles. 
     Annie would go into the back yard, and not realizing that Sadie was saving her chews, she'd dig them up and start chewing on them.  Sadie was less than pleased with Annie on these occasions.
     In short, consumption smoothing is when you put money aside for later.

Friday, July 12, 2013


     Today is one of the few cool days of summer we've had in a very long time.  Because it won't get above 80 here today, I'm going to chance turning on the oven and heating up the house some.  When I bake dog cookies, I usually do a bunch of batches at a time to minimize the amount of time the oven needs to be turned on.

I should technically preset the oven to 325, but in the summer, I tend to only turn it on once I've got all of my baking sheets filled with cookies.

My basic cookie recipee is:
1 cup flour
about 1/2 cup smooth creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup apple sauce.

I start by mixing the peanut butter into the flour until all of the peanut butter is broken into small sections.  Then I add in the apple sauce, but I only add in half at a time, wait for it to blend through, and then add in the rest slowly while mixing it (you may not use all of the 1/2 cup of apple sauce, so slowly add it in)
If you added in the entire half cup, and it seems a bit soupy/soggy add in a table spoon of flour at a time.  Mix together until it's the consistency of a sugar cookie.

Speaking of sugar cookies, you'll need to roll it out like a sugar cookie.  Don't forget to put flour down on the counter top and flour the rolling pin.  I've also got these cool bands I bought at my local kitchen supply store.  They go over the end of the rolling pin to help you stay consistent in how you roll out the dough.  If you want to add in color to the cookies, I've managed this before by mixing in pumpkin instead of apple sauce.  I've also done it with strawberry apple sauce instead of regular.

Once the dough is flat, just cut it with cookie cutters the way you'd cut a sugar cookie.

I tend to bake the cookies on one side and place the tray on the bottom rack for 7 minutes, I then pull them out, flip the cookies over, and place them on the top rack for 7 minutes.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: How we spent 4th of July

There's nothing like chilling with a friend and her pup on The 4th of July!  (We didn't go to see any fireworks, and Bella was safe and sound the entire time.  Annie and Paul spent the holiday at home secure in their own home.)

Monday, July 8, 2013

True confessions: Paul isn't Paul's name

     Yep, you read right.  Paul isn't actually Paul.  In real life, his name is Paulie.  When we adopted him from the SPCA (here) his name was Paulie and it's what he answered to. (It's also what he still answers to)

     Why do I call him Paul in Blogville, though?  In Blogville, you don't actually hear me calling him to get a treat, or dinner, or to go for a walk.  When I say "Paulie" it sounds like I'm saying "Polly," and most people then start referring to Paul as "she."  I usually stop and correct anyone who calls him a her and point out that Annie is the girl wearing a pink collar and Paul is the boy with the blue collar.  (I'm not trying to prepetuate the stereotype, quite honestly that's the only reason they wear the colored collars they wear.)

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Home again

I took a trip for a week back to Pittsburgh, PA to visit family.  Paul has been my shadow since I got home.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Paul Shopped Til He Dropped

     Or at least that's what I joke about.  All honesty, we don't buy much when we go to the mall.  I have my few choice stores that I'm addicted to (Sur La Table, anyone?).  But beyond that, we tend to stop, stand and talk to the people who work in the stores.  (I've brought in cookies before for the workers for being so nice when I'm just standing there and clearly not buying anything.)  When Paul "assumes his position" in the heat and humidity of summer, I can't move far.
When I first showed these pics to the Hubbs, he thought the floors had been photo-shoped in.  They weren't.