Tuesday, November 23, 2010

My Fuzzy Child

I'm here to break stereotypes.  All witches do not like cats.  I have two who refuse to die, while spreading kitty litter throughout my house, meowing incessantly at 4:00 am, and scratching shit up.  
When I was pregnant with Mooch I started thinking about dogs.  We were living in this rented farmhouse of 10 acres, and the Mister works nights - I wanted protection.  Big, toothy protection.  Since the cats would not so much as chase the non-stop mice running through the house, I kind of doubted they would have my back should an intruder bust in.
I was at my cousins - and there he was.

He was running around with a group of kids, and though he weighs over 100 pounds, he was sweet as he could be.  He came up and leaned on my leg and looked up with those adoring dog eyes and just melted me.  I jokingly told my cousin I was going to steal him - and she replies "You can have him".  She is not a dog person and her husband had picked him up from a box of abandoned puppies on the side of the road without consulting her.  They kept him locked in a kennel in their garage, their reasoning being "Every time we let him out, he runs away"  Yeah, wonder why??
We dutifully got our American Kennel Society book for new dog owners and worked with him to learn basic commands.  But this animal has the most pure heart - he just wants to be good.  His baseline emotion is completely in love with us and wanting to please.  If anyone gets mad at him (a certain poop explosion all over the carpeted downstairs comes to mind) he is absolutely devastated.
Now, because he is basically a furry marshmallow, I was convinced he wouldn't get the whole "sometimes we need you to be a vicious dog, for security's sake" thing.  When Mooch was about 2 months old, I woke up at about 2:00 am to nurse her.  It was windy but I became aware of a knocking sound, that didn't sound wind-related.  Our bedroom was on the second floor, the kitchen had a small mud room off of it which we had designated as Zac's room (dogs are sometimes more comfortable in a small room).  The door was closed, and all of a sudden Zac starts going ballistic.  Then I hear the door to the screened in porch off the kitchen opening, and footsteps downstairs.  I shook the Mister awake and told him, and he grabbed a flashlight and his pistol and hurried down.  He snuck into the kitchen and opened the door to the mud room, and Zac tears into the porch and pounces on a guy who had "let himself in to use the phone" *snort*  By this time I've called 911 and they've sent a car out.  The Mister had forced the guy outside and had him lay on the ground until the police arrived.  I peeked out of an upstairs window to see the guy face down and Mister holding Zac back as Zac snarls and barks his head off and just generally look like he wants to rip this guy to pieces.
As you can imagine, he got some spoiling the next day, in the form of some bacon made especially for him :-)

He has proven himself time and time again to be super protective of our family, and at the same time, as loving as he could be.  If I sit on the floor he very matter-of-factly comes over and lays all 100+ pounds of himself on my lap, to get his belly rubbed.  The kids when they were teeny lil ankle biters would crawl all over him, pull his ears, poke him in the eyes, take his rawhides away ... and he never once defended himself against them.  They were allowed.  When we tuck them in to bed at night, Zac lays in their rooms while we read stories, then plunks himself down outside their doors.

I honestly can not imagine our lives without him.  We love you so much, Zacky boy.

I'm not dead yet ....

Well hi there ... and no I have not been eaten by a rabid pack of wandering Christians ... yet.  
A few weeks ago the flu hit our household.  Started with Butterbean, then spread to Mooch, then me, then the Mister.  Sick kids I can take, but kids who feel remarkably better while you are still feeling like death - no one should ever have to deal with that!  And of course the Mister is no cakewalk when he's sick.  Imagine an overdramatic Labrador.
After that the Mister took off to training in PA for 4 days, and the pace of my job picked up.  I love that everyone thinks I'm super capable, but adjusting to this after my last job where I was treated like an expensive paperweight is definitely a change.  
To say the least, my whole mojo is thrown off.  The house looks a fright, I have not even sent out thank you cards for Mooch's birthday party which was nearly a month ago (eeek!  must get on this).  My spellwork, meditation time, crafts ... no.  Just trying to get everything back in order again, which makes me feel like a wuss, and have all new respect for people who have actual big issues in their lives.
But I did hit up our natural foods co-op the other day to stock up on fair trade coffee, local organic honey, etc.  and came across some beautiful sugar pumpkins.

Martha Stewart's Everyday Food has a fantastic recipe that I'm making today ... Pumpkin Doughnut Muffins. Here is the link :
Isn't your mouth watering?!?!??
I'm also making some pumpkin bread for Thanksgiving, and mixing up an exfoliating mask with some of the puree.  
I know it can be intimidating to make your own puree, but I literally made this when I was woken up by an unruly 5 year old at 6:00 am, before I had even downed my first cup of coffee.
First, you want to use a vegetable peeler and skin the pumpkin.  I recommend wearing gloves while you do this - I didn't, and my hands were coated with pumpkin goo that took forever to scrub off. (Although it did create a mummy-effect on my hand, kind of like what you used to do with Elmer's glue when bored in elementary school)
Cut the pumpkin in half and scoop out the seeds and goop, reserve.  Then chop that sucker up.  Aim for 1-2" cubes.

 Spread out the cubes in a single layer on a cookie sheet.  Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.  I didn't put anything on them (not even vegetable oil) because I had two pumpkins and was going to be using them for a wide variety of uses, but if you were definitely only going to do pie or cookies with them, you could add cinnamon or ground clove or whatever rocks your socks.
And in to the oven they go ...

I didn't really time this, but I think I roasted the pumpkin for about an hour.  I just kept checking it until it looked fork-tender.

Ta-da!  And now for a close-up

Then pull out your food processor, or blender, or just a really good potato masher (you glutton for punishment) and puree or mash until nice and smooth.

  Store either in a glass snap-lock container, or pour into freezer bags and freeze.

And don't forget to roast those pumpkin seeds and throw all scraps in your compost bin!  We decided to dry some seeds and mix them in with our regular bird food, for a little Thanksgiving treat for our birdy friends.  

Hope everyone has a blessed Thanksgiving ... don't forget to thank Mother Earth for her abundance and blessings throughout the year.  And eat all the pie you want :-)
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...