Tag Archives: kitty

Rest in Peace, Misty

Perhaps you’ve noticed that we haven’t posted for over a week now. We have some very sad news to reveal: Misty, our baby kitty (the white one), passed away Thursday, November 29th at night time. It was very sudden and expected and we believe it had to do with her brain and the fact that she was born feral. Could’ve been a cyst, aneurysm, stroke, and so forth. Even if we wanted to know, it wouldn’t change the fact that she’s not longer here. If anyone knows us, they know we see our animals as kin.

We are heartbroken because she was only just over six months old, but there was nothing we can do. We got her cremated and have her urn close to us, she will always be remembered. We are healing slowly and can now think about how grateful we were to have her at all. She will be very missed by all who knew her and her quirks. She came so far from being under-socialized and turned into a cuddle monster. Nymeria, her younger sister, misses her too, for they were never separated. If you want to learn more about Misty, click here. Here’s a few pictures of remembrance:

Zzzzz...

Help, I'm adorable!

Help, I’m adorable!

Cuddlers unite!

Classic sink nap Ying-yang

No meeeeee!

Being too cute

First day we got her

First day we got her

Misty has a very strong lower body. During food time, she will go on her hind legs and walk around on them in order to be closer to the food

Don't eat me!Sleeping beauty Cuddlez

Misty being cute Thank you to all who gave Misty love.

We have some more news, and it’s a little better this time. Since Nymeria, our little black kitten, is only five months old, we were very worried about her being alone for 8-10 hours per day since she has never been alone in her entire life. Although I wasn’t exactly ready, we went to the Humane Society last week to look for a companion for Nymeria. Misty could never be replaced. Nymeria grieved her loss (though she doesn’t understand death) and I know she still misses her even though Misty could be a prissy older sister sometimes.

We found and brought home Sajah. He is a 3-month old male, orange tabby. His name is Korean and it means “lion.” He very much acts like a lion cub, too. Extremely playful with big paws and a chubby stocky body. Nymeria isn’t too hot about him yet, but she has someone to play with and she feels better not being alone.

Sajah

Sajah

Rest in peace, little snow leopard. 

Bisque Me! Beautiful Butternut Squash Bisque

Now, I’m no Master Soup-Maker. In fact, this is my first time cooking a soup (or bisque, rather) from scratch. And it turned out really well! I got my basis for the recipe here, but I really changed this one up. Also, apologies for the lack of postings, busy lives! We’ll get back into it, we have a lot in store for you still. Alright, get ready!

Ingredients:

  • Olive oil
  • Butter
  • 1/2 onion
  • 3/4 cup of diced carrots
  • Butternut squash
  • Vegetable stock
  • Salt/pepper to taste
  • Cinnamon to taste
  • Brown sugar to taste
  • Ground ginger to taste
  • Garlic

Alright! Semi-long list but once you have everything cut up it’s easy. And the last few are to taste, throw your own ideas in there too. Ginger, brown sugar, and cinnamon just gave that nice soothing Fall flavor. So amazing on the cold nights we’ve been getting in Boulder.

Directions:

  • Cut up your butternut squash (I would roast it before hand, it was NOT fun to cut raw), carrots, and onions into cubes or small pieces.

  • Next, put some oil and butter into a big pot. I added some garlic in there too. Watch out, the smell is divine.

  • Once that’s nice and hot, pop in the onions.

  • Once the onions are nice and tender, put in the carrots and squash. And, though I’m not explicitly saying it, throughout this I’m putting in salt, pepper, garlic pepper, cinnamon, brown sugar, etc. Do it to taste. Make it your own.

  • Stir it around and then pour your vegetable stock in and bring to boil. You’re going to leave these in here, boiling, until all the vegetables are nice and tender.

  • Alright! So your veggies and nice and tender…I hope you have a blender or food processor! Because you want to throw all that mixture into that blender or food processor and blend it until smooth. Now we have a really bad blender, and although it took some time, even ours was able to blend all these. So you can do it!

  • Once that’s all blended, pour back into the heated pot. Here, you can add cream into it if you want (I didn’t). I stirred in a lot of cinnamon, ground ginger, and brown sugar in at this point to get it to that flavor I wanted to. Just stir and taste until you are satisfied.

 

And voila! You are done! Wasn’t too hard, was it? I really really suggest it as we move into winter…it is so nice and hearty. Very warm. There might be a holiday coming up where you can use this… Let me know if you have any questions!

(BONUS KITTY PIC)

 

Get Yo Autumn On: Whole-Wheat Banana PUMPKIN Bread

Oh yes I said it…pumpkin. I’ve made tons of banana breads, but now it was time to introduce the beloved fall vegetable, pumpkin. How many times do you think I can say pumpkin in this paragraph? Anyways, this pumpkin banana bread is one, absolutely delicious, twoeasy to make, and three, doesn’t leave you feeling guilty. It uses a bit of brown sugar and honey to sweeten things up, as well as the banana and pumpkin that go along with it. I found this recipe here and varied it a bit, put more cinnamon in it, more honey, typical stuff for me. Alrighty, get ready.

Ingredients:

  • WET
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 banana
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice (weird)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • DRY
  • 1.5 cups whole-wheat flour 
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

This is the pumpkin puree I use. You can find it…ANYWHERE right now

Okay, looks like a long list but it doesn’t take long to prepare.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55-70 minutes

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  • REAL simple here. Mix all the wet ingredients together

  • Then, you mix in the dry ingredients like the flour, baking soda, etc. Just look up at the ingredient list above, I organized it for you (it was really hard).

  • Spoon it all into the buttered or oiled baking tin and place into oven!

  • Bake for 55-75 minutes. Test it in the middle with a fork or a toothpick to make sure it’s cooked all the way through.

Hope you enjoy it as much as we will! I’m bringing this over to my aunt’s and cousins’ to watch the Election Night coverage as we bite our fingernails. Now that I think about it, I probably baked this to subconsciously soothe myself.  Don’t forget to VOTE tomorrow. Please.

BONUS KITTY PIC

Kitty Spotlight: Nymeria

Very connected with the name (although she doesn’t quite respond to it yet), Nymeria is wild, mischievous, and…well, adorable. She’s our baby girl, 3 months old! She’s younger than our other kitten, Misty, by a month. I actually have the two of them on my lap right now, and Nymeria is watching me as I type. A little too cute to handle, she gets really excited. You can read about when we first got them here. So let’s go over how she was around a month ago (though I feel we’ve had them forever) to how she is today.

Watching me type

So let’s start when we first got her. You can see the first picture I took of her below. She was wide-eyed, hyper, and ready for action (and still is)! She was very friendly, and while we were trying to decide on what kitten to get, she just jumped on my lap. Kind of a give away there. She loves to play, really loves to play. And if Misty is being too prissy to do so, she will sprint around the house, jumping up on the couch and cat tree then jumping off. We play a bit of tag then too, and hide and seek.

First day we got her, wide-eyed Nymeria

Nymeria playing hide and seek

One day I was looking for something in the very small desk drawer, and she hopped right in and laid comfortably

She is very mischievous and she knows when she’s doing something wrong because if we go near her during her crime, she will scamper away as quickly as possible. Nymeria loves to play with this black and white pen and we’ll find it on the ground when we come back or clamped in her tiny little jaws. She has the adorable little nature to her that will be apparent in her face, this baby-like innocence and curiosity. If we push her away from cuddling, she will come right back every single time. She’s also gotten into the habit of cleaning Misty a lot, licking her head and ears, sometimes with a bite to go with it if she’s feeling playful. You can see that below.

Tried out her Halloween outfit. She wasn’t pleased

Nymeria (true to her name) seemed born a hunter. Right from the start, she knew how to hunt and pounce. She had perfect form in her waiting-for-pounce mode and sprung at the exact moment. In fact, Misty didn’t even know how to pounce or play when she got to us, but by observing Nymeria, she does all the time now. Although she’s significantly smaller than Misty, she can do pretty well when they wrestle together. Nymeria is excellent at grabbing the toys we annoyingly dangle over her head and great at catching the toys we drag on the ground like animals. We just need to watch our toes.

Nymeria was not without her problems, though. Actually, she came to us with quite a few problems all at the tender age of two months old. She came with roundworm, a bacteria that affecting her pooping habits. She couldn’t really control it and it wasn’t very good. There were a lot of baths, a lot of scrubbing the carpet, and wiping butts. We kinda got used to it. We had to give her medicine every day which wasn’t fun (using a syringe to plunge the icky goo into her mouth). Then, she got a pretty bad cold, wheezing, sneezing, lots of big bogeys. And we could really tell she was sick. You know with kids, you can tell–her usual rascal self was not there, she slept most of the time, and never felt like eating. But we slowly got her back to health. She has the occasional sneeze now and then, but it’s cute.

An adorable sick Nymeria passed out with her cute shaved belly (from her spaying surgery)…we may or may not have wanted to shave it again just because it’s adorable

Yet, despite all her rambunctiousness, she’s extremely sweet and friendly, and would never purposely hurt anyone. Misty, time and time again, steals Nymeria’s food out of her bowl (before we catch her and reprimand her), and Nymeria doesn’t fight her, doesn’t growl (like Misty does), but simply waits until she can get her food again. She’s very patient and loving and would never hurt her sister, who I think in return would eat everything so Nymeria would have nothing. She has an amazing tolerance and easy-going nature which makes her never act aggressive. Nymeria is the ultimate cuddler, whether it be Chris or I or Misty, she will always initiate.

I would say her most distinguishing aspect (besides her adorable waddling bowleggedness) is that she kneads. I’m guessing she was taken from her mother very early and was thus unweaned. Never got used to not having mama’s milk since she didn’t have time to properly wean off it. So, if anyone lays on the couch, you can count up to 5 before you’ll have little black Nymeria paws on your chest. She will then curl into your neck, put both paws on your neck or arm, and knead them, like she’s trying to push milk out of mama. She does this all the time. In fact, right now she’s doing it to Misty on my lap, who definitely does not mind the massage.

Well, I wrote way too much, but I love my kitties. Nymeria is growing up great and healthy, can’t wait to see how she is all growed up. Keep an eye out for the next Kitty Spotlight!

She thinks I’m her mother

Cheers!

HEALTHY Whole-Wheat Banana Bread

We usually have a bunch of bananas in the house. For fruit salads and more so primarily, for protein shakes (rahh!). However, sometimes we forget about them, or don’t do heavy workouts, so we feel like we don’t deserve one of Chris’ amazing protein shakes (that post is coming up!). So they sit in the lazy Susan cupboard, lonely for attention.

And so later in the week, I stumble upon them in their browning blackish glory. Aha! I know exactly what to do with you! So, the spotted way-too-ripe bananas get pulled from the cupboard and onto our maniacal counter-top. It’s easy, folks. IF you have over-ripe bananas, MAKE BANANA BREAD. I don’t want to hear any excuses. And if you throw them out…you’re in trouble. Let’s get started. I pulled this recipe from here, but altered it slightly (no nuts, nutmeg, etc.).

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes (I was slow, watching Empire Strikes Back/Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives)
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes (on the dot!)
  • Set Oven To: 350 degrees

Ingredients:

  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1-3 bananas (I suggest more than one, but that’s all I had to work with tonight)
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour

Remember to get out a bread pan and butter it or oil it up. Sticking is your enemy. Now first, beat the butter, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and vanilla in a bowl.

Yes, that is a whisk! I’m moving up in the world!

For this next step, make sure the bananas are mashed as much as possible. Then, mix those bananas, eggs, and honey in. I want it smooooth.

You’re almost there!! The final step is to slowly add in the whole-wheat flour. Put a little in, stir it, put some more in, stir it, and so forth. It should come out looking like this:

Then pour it into your already-greased pan. I lost a good amount of the batter to a tragic accident…my appetite.

Now put it in the oven! Remember it should be at 350 degrees. For me, it took exactly 50 minutes to bake. I took it out, tested it with a fork to see if any batter stuck and it was ready! I usually have to stick it in for another ten minutes or so. It came out really well!

Remember that this only has half a cup of sugar in it. That’s barely ANYTHING when it comes to baking. So don’t feel guilty as you shovel this down, it’s got good ingredients. We always love to put butter on ours, gives it a great added flavor, especially when it’s nice and hot.

Unfortunately, it didn’t last long before I could get the picture, so that’s a sliver of a piece. Hope you enjoy!

Oh, and…meow!

Two Games: Pixel vs. Turf

So, I am nowhere near as eloquent as Alana the Poet, but I will try to remember how to write so that it is enjoyable for the reader to get through the text. Recently, very recently in fact, I had the pleasure of playing (in) and finishing two games. One was more physically challenging and naturally, the other stimulated the mind. For anyone who thinks that video games cannot be a learning experience in a beneficial way, I think you might be wrong. Granted, some games encourage illegal and unhealthy activity, but how often are those issues raised with a Nintendo Game; let alone one that was worked on by Koji Kondo and Shigeru Miyamoto.

Shigeru Miyamoto

A Video Gaming Legend

The game that I just completed for the first time in a long time, was The Legend of Zelda Link’s Awakening, which was released in 1993, re-released for the DX in 1998 and re-re-released on the Nintendo E-Store for 3DS very recently, somewhat in commemoration of the 25th anniversary of arguably the greatest video game franchise of all time. (My favorite Nintendo based franchise, but Final Fantasy and the Elder Scrolls put up some serious competition.)

The version, which is six dollars, is well worth it. The graphics and game-play were cutting edge at the time, the music was nostalgic to the previous three major releases, and the story was clever and captivating. The replay value was still there, especially on the new handheld. I didn’t upgrade my sword to level 2 by collecting enough secret seashells or max out my health (13/14 hearts) but it was a relatively complete and smooth run.

Now, for the not so smooth run, which was more or less a series of short sprints tied with wheezing and a burning chest as the result of either altitude (no) or my being very much so out of shape (yes). We stopped by the Boulder Indoor Soccer “arena” last week to watch Ben Powell play in a very physical 6 v 6 game of indoor soccer. It is not too different from your typical soccer game but it is very fast paced with hockey substitutions. I am so grateful for those substitutions because this week, actually a few hours ago, Ben asked me to help fill out the roster. I came completely unprepared, with no indoor shoes, no shin guards, and no cardio based endurance. The third was the most painful. I had no idea there were two 22 minute and 30 second halves, but I am so happy there were not four.

Indoor soccer fields, Starfire Sports Complex,...

Indoor Soccer Arena

It was physical, I was slipping, my legs were filling with lactic acid, and my chest was about to burst, but my technique was there and I played smart enough to not make any mistakes. In all of my sporting experience, which is pretty extensive for someone my age, my best piece of advice and the lesson learned from this post for anyone who is still reading, is that the most important role players in a team sport (and an essential quality for individual sports) and the players that determine whether you win or lose do not make mistakes.

Indoor soccer at the Phanzone in Hampstead, NH

Bam!

Now, let me make it clear that I am not saying that Lebron is the worst player in the NBA because of his turnovers; all I am saying is that there is a +/- way of looking at competition, and if you do not make ANY – moves, then you are in good shape to help yourself or your team. Honestly, you do not need the raw talent of Michael Jordan, you do not need the brute force of Babe Ruth, and you do not need any gift from whoever you believe in, all you really need is knowledge and composure. Your goal is to use your knowledge of the game to make the smart safe moves, and prevent the opponent from capitalizing on your mistakes, so that you can capitalize on their mistakes. 1-0 is a win. No real competition between two great opponents should ever be a blowout.

The first person to comment on what two pieces of advice I’m trying to give out in this post will receive…a random special give-away! It can be anywhere in the world, just leave your email address.

Salad, Pesto, and a Kitten

Weird combo? Maybe. I guess that’s just how we do things here in our kitty-filled yummy home now. Worked for us as we came out with a full-belly of nutritional ingredients and a couple of curious kittens.

Anyhow, this one’s a simple recipe for those craving fresh ingredients and tastes.

Salad:

  • Tomatoes
  • Cucumbers
  • Carrots
  • Spinach
  • Salt n Pepper
  • Lemon juice

Pretty standard, right? Before I jump into prep, let me tell you the story of how we got this big fat cucumber. So, Chris is doing some dog-walking up in the hills of Boulder and a kid around six years old wearing cowboy boots waves him over. Chris replies, “Sorry, I got no cash.”  The kid says, “You don’t need cash! Take this cucumber, it’s the last one!” So Chris takes it and the boy finishes up the conversation with, “Next time, bring some money and head over to that red roof over there. That’s my garden!”

Scary how six-year-olds now have business sense of offering a free sample of their product in order to gain more business for the next time around. Anyways, back to the food already!!

So you have those wonderful ingredients chopped up (except I didn’t chop the spinach). I started with the cucumber and tomatoes, kind of sliced n diced ’em.

I always remember how good tomatoes were with salt were when I was a kid so I was following that craving. I grind some black pepper over them as well as some salt. These get put in a bowl along with some lemon juice and tossed around to get the flavor soaked in. As I finished chopping the veggies, I look to my left to see a tiny black blob on the floor. Oh yeah, that’s Nymeria.

She can watch all she wants, she ain’t getting any of this. Sometimes, I think she thinks she’s a dog…which I LOVE. As I finish up the salad and Chris is stirring the penne al dente in the pot, I toss some olive oil and balsamic nectar my cousin invented (check it out). Things are looking goooood.

Meanwhile, Chris is cooking some penne al dente. I’m surprised there’s any left to cook due to his love for raw pasta.

As he’s straining the pasta, there’s a scatter in the corner. Hmmm…suspicious.

CAUGHT RED-HANDED! 

Nymeria continues to find places to view us, though I hope her curiosity doesn’t get the better of her one day. She’s quite the rambunctious one. Oops, back to the food.

So we strain the pasta, add in some pesto (we don’t have a blender yet so it’s sadly store bought–but still good) and Chris adds in some protein. Tuna from the can. Sound unappetizing? Sure does. But it really adds a good meaty texture and flavor to the dish. And satisfied my hungry belly pretty darn quickly.

Cheers.