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Posts Tagged ‘cats’

The Cat Who…


(guest post by DH Rob)

In my last post I told you about our "loaner cat." He is fitting in very well, and as we had hoped, Buddy's behavior has improved greatly. We think he is enjoying the company of another feline in the house.

We have tried out all kinds of names on the new cat, including some that were mentioned in the last post and its comments. We have finally landed on a name that seems to fit — Qwill, short for Qwilleran. Our granddaughters Avery and Della have really latched on to that name. It's really cute to hear Della calling for the cat. She runs around the house saying, "Qweel! Qweel!"

LilianJacksonBraun

Some of you will recognize the name Jim Qwilleran right away as the main (human) character in the Cat Who... series by Lilian Jackson Braun. You can read more about it in the article in Wikipedia. If you've never read any of the books in that series and you like cats and mysteries, we think you'll enjoy the books. I would recommend starting out with the first one in the series, called The Cat Who Could Read Backwards. Here's a link to a list of the titles in chronological order.

In the novels, Qwill's two cats, Koko and Yum Yum, help him solve whatever mystery he's working on. Their help comes in various ways, one of which is knocking from a shelf a book whose title is a clue to the solution. As we considered what to name our cat, we have found him several times lying by one of our bookcases, as seen below.

Qwill Hardy Boys

With his nose pointed towards the Hardy Boys books, he seemed to be telling us which name he preferred. We actually considered, but only for as long as it took to say it, the names Frank, Joe, and Biff.

I mentioned our granddaughter Della earlier in this post. Some of you know this already, but she became a big sister Monday of this week. Her little sister Reynolds Rebecca Collogan came into the world about 6 weeks early, weighing 4 lbs. 12 oz. Renny is still in the NICU and is doing better each day. Nora was discharged last night, and we hope Renny will be able to go home soon. Please pray for her and her parents during this difficult time of living in two different places in town. I'll post a picture of her soon. Here's a picture of Renny and Mommy shortly after the birth.

RennyNora

They take the CPAP off occasionally to see how she's breathing on her own. We hope that in the next 24 hours she'll progress to just a little oxygen thingy in her nose. During the 20 minutes she was free of the CPAP this afternoon, Nora was able to take some pictures of her sweet little face. Here's one of them.

Renny


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Some favorites


SwigSugarCookies

I tried a couple of new cookie recipes this summer which we really enjoyed. DD Nora wanted me to post the link for these Swig Style Sugar Cookies. The recipe is quite large but can easily be cut in half. The cookies are very tender and they freeze well. I did not have a Starbucks bottle so I just used a juice glass to smash the balls of cookie dough onto the cookie sheets.

DH Rob said I should be sure to post this recipe for Frosted Maple Drops from the Iowa Housewife site. They are delicious and would make a nice Christmas cookie. Go ahead and make the entire batch because you will want to eat them all. They also freeze well if layered between sheets of waxed paper in an airtight container.

FrostedMapleDrops

I have posted about this cornbread salad before, but it truly is delicious and it makes a nice side dish. I try to freeze leftover cornbread when I bake it or when we get some at a restaurant. I tend to use less cornbread and bacon than the original recipe calls for and more vegetables. I also use prepared ranch dressing. I have seen other recipes that include pinto beans.

CornbreadSaladEncore

Our cat Buddy has seemed rather bored living with two empty nesters so we took out a "loaner" cat from The Cat Clinic to see if having a companion would improve his behavior. So far the two cats are on friendly terms and seem to be adjusting well. We still haven't come up with a name for the new little cat but are considering some having to do with mustaches. ๐Ÿ™‚

MustacheCat


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A little bit of this and that


I do fully intend to get back to my travel series but life has intruded upon my blogging time lately. DD Megan and her family were here for about a week and we had lots of fun doing things as a family.

I mentioned in the meme in my previous blog post that we had planned to try a new recipe for baked doughnuts while they were here. Megan made them for us one morning and they were very good. If you don't have the special doughnut pans I think you could probably bake them in muffin tins and just adjust the baking time. I find that most muffin recipes advise you to bake them at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes.

Here is what the pans look like:

BakedDoughnutPan

Apple-Cider Doughnuts with Maple Glaze

2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsps. baking powder
1 1/2 tsps. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
2 tsps. cinnamon
1 large egg
2/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup apple butter
1/3 cup apple cider (we used apple juice)
1/3 cup plain yogurt
3 Tbsps. cooking oil

Maple Glaze
1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup maple syrup

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Coat doughnut molds with cooking spray or oil. In a mixing bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside. In another bowl whisk together egg, brown sugar, apple butter, maple syrup, apple cider or juice, yogurt, and oil. Add dry ingredients and stir just until moistened. Divide the batter into the prepared molds. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Loosen edges and turn out onto racks to cool.
Makes about 18.
To make Maple Glaze:
Combine powdered sugar and vanilla. Gradually whisk in maple syrup to make glazing consistency. Dip one side of the doughnuts into the glaze to coat then set them on a rack for a few minutes for the glaze to set.

AppleCiderBakedDoughnuts

We really liked these and it was fun to have them for a special treat.

One night all the guys in the family went to a baseball game. Megan, Nora, Maddie, Della, and I stayed home and decided to have a "Dip Night" and to watch the movie Frozen, which Megan had brought down with her. The girls each made savory dips. Megan made a spinach artichoke dip and Nora made a refried bean dip.

MegNoraDipNight-14

I made a sweet Oven Baked S'Mores Dip that I had read about over on Southern Plate. It took all of five minutes to put together and another five to heat up. I kept teasing the girls about how hard I was working on my part of the refreshments. We used animal crackers to scoop up the rich chocolaty dip. I also used two cups of chocolate chips instead of the blocks of chocolate. It was really quite good and I would encourage you to try it if you need a quick and tasty treat. (We did share these dips with the guys when they returned from their event.) Grandson Drew enjoyed the leftovers the next day when they were reheated in the microwave.

SmoreDip

Buddy, our cat, is a little intimidated by the children when they are here visiting, but he really seems to enjoy watching them and loves it when they will play with him by dragging a string or ribbon or throwing his toys for him to fetch. Right now four of our grandchildren are three years old or under so we have two high chairs in our kitchen and a third one that folds up is just outside the kitchen in the garage. Since the children have gone home Buddy has started sitting in one of the high chairs at mealtimes. Maybe he misses them?

BuddyBlueHighChair

BuddyBrownHighChair

Another thing that has been keeping me busy the last couple of weeks has been the garden. We are getting quite a few beans and tomatoes and the figs have just started ripening. I've also purchased a few other vegetables that have gone into the freezer. I've canned some tomatoes and today made a batch of Tomato Jam using a recipe that I learned about from Elizabeth last year. It takes a while to cook to the jam stage but has a really delicious intense flavor. It's sort of like the best catsup that you have ever eaten. I would highly recommend that you try making some if you have a few extra tomatoes on hand.

What's been keeping you busy these last few weeks of summer vacation?

Becka


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A couple of new things


I have been writing blog posts in my head for several days now, but haven't had enough energy to sit down and actually write. I've had a bad cold all week and have been doing minimal housework and cooking and a lot of resting. I think I'm beginning to recover, but unfortunately, Rob is coming down with it now. ๐Ÿ™

I think I have mentioned before that Rob usually bakes something for us every Sunday morning. He was a baker all through college and likes to keep his baking skills honed. ๐Ÿ™‚ I saw a recipe for a Pear Puff Pancake on the Mennonite Girls Can Cook website and asked him if he would like to try it since I had all the ingredients on hand. We had never eaten a baked pancake like this before but we both enjoyed it. Rob was a bit alarmed at first when he saw that it puffed around the edges but was sunken in the middle. I had seen other recipes and pictures before and was able to reassure him that this was how it was supposed to look. The only changes he made to the recipe were to use a 9" pie plate and to use drained canned pears. He just warmed the pears a bit in the melted butter and then proceeded with the recipe.

PearPuffPancake

Early this week I got a call from our vet, Dr. Carolyn Anderson from The Cat Clinic, telling us about a very sweet cat who was at the clinic and needed a good home. His former owner could no longer keep him and she was trying to find him a good home. Who could resist a come on like that? We went and met his owner yesterday and were approved for adoption. We went by the clinic today and brought him home. He's about a year and a half old and is very inquisitive and friendly. Nora stopped by with one of the children she cares for and the kitty doesn't seem to be afraid of children, which was something we were concerned about. We have decided to call him Buddy. I'm sure you will be hearing much more about him in the future. ๐Ÿ™‚

Here are a couple of pictures of our newest family member:

BuddyWindowApril

BuddyGreenRug

Becka


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Our house is haunted


Our house is haunted. I take the can opener from the drawer and wait for someone to come near. I hear noises and expect to see a little face peering up at me. I walk into the bedroom and look to see if someone is napping on the bed. I eat my morning cereal and save just a bit of milk to share with a little friend. Yes, our house in haunted by the memories of two elderly cats which have been a part of our lives for the last eighteen years.

We knew this day would come as they aged, lost weight, became less active, stopped playing, and then showed signs of actual suffering. But still the dreaded days came too soon. We lost Adelaide in December and then Clementine just this past weekend.

So, for the first time in many, many years there are no little felines sharing our home. Will we get another cat? Perhaps, but not for a time. The cat accouterments are boxed and in the attic awaiting possible future need.

Are there animals in heaven? Randy Alcorn has an interesting perspective on this in his book Heaven. I do know that God created the animals and that He cares for them and wants us to take good care of those which he has entrusted to our care. I'm thankful for those which have given me a great deal of joy and left their paw prints on my heart.

Becka


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