Funny, just last week it was spring…and now it’s …sprinter?? I have to go outside and spray the garden today. Thought I’d do it today while I don’t have any “help.” Jean Claude and Roxie are still with their mom. I’ve got some home made tomato sauce simmering for some eggplant I’ll roast later in the week. But today, Sunday, it’s meat day in my last “meatless” week before Lent is over. I plan to cook chicken breasts stuffed with goat cheese, basil and cranberries. (My variation on a Barefoot Contessa Ida Garten recipe) and of course some whipped mashed potatoes.
Monthly Archives: March 2010
The daughter of my good friend Ella, Andito, took her rescue minpin to the vet last Sunday for a routine test. The vet made an error and within minutes the dog bleed to death – so Andito wrote this poem. (Please note information about animal rescue programs follows)
Our house no longer feels like a home
She is here
Dents in pillows, tiny footprints on the floor, a leash on a table
It’s been 72 hours
Since I’ve walked to the kitchen and she followed me anticipating a treat
Since she exploded in a flurry of motion when the doorbell rang
The food dish is empty and her water hasn’t been changed
It’s been 72 hours
Since someone woke us up to give them breakfast and then promptly returned to bed
Since she curled up with Mike for an afternoon nap or sat in my lap as I worked on the computer
It’s been more than 3 years since I first met her
She was the smallest, six pounds and less than a foot tall, including 2 inches of ears
In the flurry of activity with the other dogs she trotted around proud and aloof
She didn’t come to me, wag her tail, or bark
On the ride home she started snoring as she slept in my lap and I saw that one of her canine teeth protruded over her lip
She stole my heart with a snore and a snaggletooth
She was adorable, endlessly curious, hilarious, regal, adventurous, loving, patient, fearless, and charming. She was the boss and the baby, the queen and the court jester. Her name was Truffles, because she was a chocolate miniature pinscher. We didn’t choose that name, though it suited her just fine. Over time as her confidence grew and her personality evolved she, like any true friend, earned a number of nicknames, “Rooty Toot,” “L’il Bit,” “The Situation,” “Queen of Sheba,” “One Way,” “Kitty Paws,” and “Anubis.”
It’s been 72 hours
Since we had to say good bye to our dear friend
The little girl in me can’t stop crying
But, the woman in me thinks this is the right thing to do
I am sending this to you because you are a fellow animal lover, friend or colleague. We find so easily, in our four legged friends the qualities we so desperately seek in our human companions – unconditional love, loyalty, gratitude, acceptance, patience and companionship. Seriously, has your significant other ever greeted you the way your pet has or been as appreciative of a meal?
If you have a pet give them a hug or an extra treat, scratch behind their ears, take them for an extra long walk, buy them a new toy, forgive the next accident, and laugh at their hijinks for me.
One more thing, I know this is long but, please keep reading. While there is nothing more I can do for Truffles perhaps you can find it in your heart to help other animals?
You can make a donation to the miniature pinscher rescue at the address below, or online at
P.O. Box 176
Pinellas Park, FL 33780
Please make checks payable to IMPS, and write Truffles in the memo
If you would like to improve the medical care for all of our four legged friends, please make a donation to the Ohio State University Veterinary Medical School, you can send donations online here,
, or mail to:
CVM Office of Development
1900 Coffey Road
Columbus, OH 43212
Please make the check out to The Ohio State University Foundation, fund #313313 and reference the fund # and Truffles in the memo line.
They have a number of funds to choose from, including:
Veterinary Outreach Program Support in Partnership with Lifecare Alliance – Fund Number: 313313
This fund is used to support the veterinary medicine outreach program that is in partnership with Meals on Wheels/Lifecare Alliance. This program takes our students into areas where the elderly are in need of pet care but may not be able to come into the hospital, if they are unable to drive, have health issues, etc. There are several faculty and student who go out to these homes to perform routine check-ups, etc, or if needed, will transport the pet to the clinic to perform a surgery.
So the cats are with their mom today, although their imprint remains. Fuzzy toys, rumpled rugs, paw prints on the glass coffee table in the basement. Human beings leave imprints too. There are people who make one’s life better just by being who they are, flaws and all. There are people who try to pull you down consistently. Still peace knows no extremes. Sometimes the people we love bring conflict but I read once “peace is not the absence of conflict but the ability to cope with it.”
As I write this I think about the people, the animals and things that bring peace in my life. By virtue of our humaness there is no perfection in any relationship or endeavor. We can only strive for peace and ultimately there are people (and pets) who bring a smile much of the time.
Well, there was drama moving the cats from Grandma’s to my house tonight. Due to an accident, I only have one cage for them and I guess that they were tired of traveling together. JC refused to get in the cage and he always gets in without a fuss. Roxie was her normal drama queen self. So I had to make two trips to bring them over. Then I left to go to dinner.
When I came home both cats were at the door waiting for me at the door. I’m not surprised that Jean-Claude was there, but Roxie isn’t usually a homebody. Then when I came upstairs, they immediately followed and JC wanted to go out on the deck. I opened the door and he’s still out there. Roxie did go out, but came back pretty soon to spend quality time with her mom. Per her normal self she immediately came back in, started walking on my back since I’m on the bed and them jumped off.
Let’s see what tonight brings.
There seems to be a lot of violent play between Roxie and Jean Claude of late. I watched them last weekend at my daughter’s house. Loud, hissing, fur flying everywhere. Last night at their other residence(my house) it continued. Furniture was moved. Their scratch box upended. They are after all animals but I wonder as they watch the news as I do if they got the wrong message. It would seem that the violence preached from the right wing has gotten them energized. They are after all animals and tend to take their cues from loud noises and senseless animation.
Jean Claude wanted to go to his spot by the window early today. Guess he had an early morning meeting with his bird friends. He pulled at the blinds and then when I woke up he patted the blinds to indicate to me to pull them up. I obliged. Later I let him outside -or rather he and Roxie peered outside from the upstairs porch into the yard. Too cold still , plus I think they were both entertained with watching me make wheat pancakes. For some reason I have not yet got the hang of it. Cooking is relaxing and sometimes challenging — especially wheat pancakes.
Or the mom will come after her. Right now Roxie is asleep on the bed which means Jean-Claude is downstairs asleep. JC loves his women, but he hates being disturbed when he is asleep. He will generally stay downstairs or underneath the bed except when you are in a deep sleep. Somehow he can sense when you are in a deep sleep either from sickness or from just being tired.
Jean Claude and Roxie joined me again outside today. I think Roxie is still debating whether she is more of a house cat or not. She beat a hasty retreat back into the house at the sound of the neighbor’s dog. Of course not Jean Claude who remained under one of my rose bushes, calmly chewing grass.
With all the warm weather I decided to bring out some outdoor furniture, naturally Jean Claude followed me into the garage to inspect but he quickly became bored. I had a bright idea to swap out my two front porch chairs, worn by the harsh winter for two chairs I kept in the garage. Rather than carry the new chairs up the stairs and through the house I decided to carry them through the alley to the front of the house. I shut but DID NOT LOCK the basement door and LOCKED the screen door which has security bars. As I started down the alley with the chairs in hand, I heard the trash truck fast approaching behind me. Jean Claude, still outside, began to howl. I glanced over my shoulder to see him beckoning at the upstairs back door. “Let him wait,” I thought. I continued carrying the chairs through the alley to their new resting place. Giving the four chair layout a try I decided ‘ just two for now.’ I proceeded back down the stairs with the old chairs through the alley to my backyard. Where…was Jean Claude?? No more howling but my basement door was now ajar. “Oh my goodness,” I thought, “Someone has broken into my house. I must have forgotten to lock the screen door.”
I peered inside and to my amazement there standing inside the house behind the screen door was ….Jean Claude. Evidently not inclined to wait for me to come and let him back in the house he had pushed the bottom screen in a bit, climbed through the security bars, pushed open the door and let himself in.
Hopefully I won’t soon see cat toys strategically placed on my house steps.
A beautiful pre-spring day. Jean Claude and Roxie actually spent a bit of time in the backyard. I then gave them some wet food- chicken feast. They tend to be picky eaters. I think they prefer the dry stuff. We as humans often have our preferences about food, although I am always up for a chicken feast myself – preferably fried . I usually cook it up with flour, paprika, onion powder and deep fry it in peanut oil.
Spent part of the day recuperating after a visit to the dentist and watching the Food Network Channel ‘s Barefoot Contessa Ina Garten. Say what you will the woman can cook – she makes you want to eat and cook. I own four of her cookbooks and had the pleasure of meeting her four years ago while in the Hamptons. She and her husband Jeffrey were buying flowers. She is just like she is on television!! Truly a serene and gifted spirit.
I tried her fried chicken recipe but it involves buttermilk – probably the ONLY recipe she has created that I don’t like. That said I’ve joined my neighbors Paul and Isaiah in our annual “no meat” for Lent sacrifice except on Sundays. Think I’ll make some fried chicken this Sunday. In the meantime please enjoy Paul’s recipe for quick soup(with V-8 juice).
Saute in three T olive oil:
Half medium onion sliced
2 cloves minded garlic
Fennel seed ½ t
Red pepper flakes ¼ t
Add to sauté and cook for another 3 min.
Add 1 ½ shredded cabbage [not too fine] and cook with other ingredients.
Add small can [12 oz] of V-8 and about three cans of water
Bring to boil, then simmer.
Add two carrots chopped
1 t salt
1/3 of a red bell pepper chopped
1 small zucchini chopped
1/3 can of garbanzo beans
¼ cup elbow mac
So there is a way to indulge Roxie and Jean Claude in their favorite forms of play at the same time. Roxie prefers the laser toy, Jean Claude the loopy feather duster. If I bend down low I can indulge Roxie with my left hand and Jean Claude with my right. If only dealing with life’s other activities was so simple. I must go now. Roxie is waiting for me to resume play.