Dog Cookies: Sweet Potato Oatmeal

by Marianne on 08/17/2014

in Dogs, Home

Dog Cookies

Hi, it’s me, Nadine!  My mom was trying to sleep in today because it’s Sunday, and she says she doesn’t have to work.  But, me and and my foster sister, Novella, are big-time morning dogs!  We totally love mornings!  At 6:30, we are ready to Go! Go! Go!!!  Doesn’t matter what day of the week it is.  So, I asked if we could make some cookies.  I think mom said yes, but she might have just said “let me sleep”.  I’m not sure.  But it’s ok, because I know how to make cookies, and Novella knows how to work the computer.  So here we go!

Nadine Making Cookies

I love Sweet Potatoes, so that is the kind of cookie we will make. First off, you have to cook the Sweet Potato.  Poke some holes in it and put it in the microwave for about 4 or 5 minutes. Then you mix it in when the other stuff.

Nadine Making Cookies

Sometimes, I have tummy problems, so my special food doesn’t have any wheat in it.  I’m using some Rice Flour for these.  It’s gluten-free.  I don’t know what that means, but gluten sounds gross, so I probably would like it a lot…except for when it makes me feel bad.

Dog Cookies

These cookies are really easy to make.  Blend the mushy stuff together, and then stir in the dry stuff until it’s just right.  Roll it into litte balls, about 1/2 inch around.  And then you kind of smush each one a little bit with your paw, or thumb (whichever you have) to make them cookie shaped.  They don’t really change shape in the oven.

Dog Cookies

Cook them in the oven thingy for about 40 minutes. When they cool off, share them with your best friends!

Dogs Want Cookies



          Gotta go!  I think Mom is waking up!

…… With love, Nadine & Novella, with JackJack, Maggie and Molly!


5.0 from 1 reviews

Dog Cookies: Sweet Potato Oatmeal
Recipe type: For Dogs

  • 1 Cup Sweet Potato (cooked, diced)
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 TBLS Molasses
  • ⅓ Cup Water
  • 1 Cup Rice Flour
  • 1 Cup Oats
  • ½ tsp Baking Soda
  • ¼ tsp Cinnamon

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Blend the first 4 ingredients together in a medium bowl, until smooth.
  3. Add in the remaining ingredients and stir until well blended.
  4. Roll into ½ inch balls, and flatten slightly (they will not spread).
  5. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool.
  6. Makes about 4 dozen.


{ 1 comment }

Breakfast Popsicles

by Marianne on 08/14/2014

in Eat, Home


Wait…what?  Popsicles for breakfast?  I saw this idea over at The Kitchn, and I was like, “Oh, hell yeah!”

It’s definitely time to break out the popsicle molds again.   I like these not only for breakfast when there’s no time for cooking, but they also make a fantastic “Oh Yes, I did just finish that run” cool-down treat.  They are basically just yogurt, fruit and cereal/granola, so it’s all good.

For mine, I veered off The Kitchn’s recipe a bit (I never really follow a recipe).  I went super easy, with no actual cooking involved, and also used way less sugar / honey.  I eat plain yogurt all the time, and I like it just fine.  If you don’t, then add more sugar.


I made 2 flavors, and liked them both equally well. Both use Kashi Go-Crunch for the crunchy bits.  Just combine or layer as desired into popsicle molds, and freeze for several hours.  Each combination below makes 4 popsicles.

Blueberry “Cheesecake”:
  • 1 Cup Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 1/2 tsp. Vanilla
  • 1 tsp Lemon Juice
  • 1 tsp. Honey
  • 1 TBL Milk
  • 1/2 Cup granola or cereal such as Kashi
  • 1/2 Cup Blueberries
Banana “Nut Bread”
  • 1 Cup Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 1 TBL Milk
  • 1/2 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. Honey
  • 1 Banana, cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 Cup granola or cereal such as Kashi


To release the popsicles, I use a square plastic bin, filled with warm water and set the frozen molds in and wait about a minute.  Then give the bottom a little squeeze and the top a little jiggle, and it should release fairly easily.  (Do not take that last sentence out of context.  We are talking about popsicles, people!)

Let them sit out for a few minutes before eating to soften up if they freeze too hard.

These are so easy and fun, and I can’t wait to make up some more flavors!

{ 1 comment }


by Marianne on 08/06/2014

in Eat, Home



When it comes to food, I can be rather fickle.

My new favorite thing right now is a quickle!

A quickle? You ask, what’s that? Is it good?  Oh yes!

A quickle is an easy, fast, anyone-can-make-this kind of pickle!

These things are so easy, and a bit addictive. The easy part is that there is no cooking involved, no sterilizing jars, and no degree in chemistry required.  They are basically refrigerator pickles, and you can spice them up any way you please.

I like mine with lots of onion, because it reminds me of the cucumber and onion salad that my Dad always makes.  I love the pickled onions as much as the cucumber.   I found some Kirby cucumbers, or pickling cucumbers, but you can also use English cucumbers, which are those funny long ones, often wrapped in shrink wrap.

I eat most of these just right out of the jar, but I must say the are excellent atop a tiny burger!  I don’t really do a lot of fast food, and so probably have a hamburger an average of 3 times in a year.  But, last weekend we grilled up a bunch of sliders, and I’m maybe a little ashamed to say that I had sliders with quickles for four meals in a row!  I love the crunch, and with sliders it’s perfect because of the full coverage you get… the perfect meat-to-pickle ratio in every bite.

Quickle Slider

A little safety note here, so listen up, Sherlock.  Remember the part about no cooking, and sterilization?  These are NOT preserved, and need to be refrigerated.  This means you can’t put them in your creepy doomsday prepping dungeon, and plan on serving them up after the apocalypse.  (Unless you plan on serving up a nice batch of botulism, in which case, I’ll pass on the dinner invite and take my chances with the zombies!)  Keep these in the fridge, and they will be good for 2-3 weeks.  If you eat them all up in a couple of days, feel free to slice up some more cukes and onions and reuse the vinegar mix, but toss it after that.

Feel free to go crazy with these.. have fun!  Try them spicy, or sweeter, or dilly.. whatever floats your boat!

Quickles (Quick Pickles)
Recipe type: Appetizer

  • 4-5 Pickling Cucumbers (or 2 English Cucumbers)
  • ½ – 1 Onion
  • 2-3 cloves Garlic
  • 1 Serrano Pepper
  • 1 TBLS Kosher Salt
  • Pinch Sugar
  • ¼ tsp Celery Seed
  • ¼ tsp Mustard Seed
  • 2 Cups White Vinegar (or mix of vinegars)
  • ⅔ Cup Water

  1. Slice cucumbers and onion. Peel and rough chop Garlic, and Serrano Pepper.
  2. Place into a large jar or container with a lid.
  3. Ad remaining ingredients, and turn over several times to mix.
  4. Refrigerate for several hours, turning occasionally to mix.
  5. Keeps refrigerated for 2-3 weeks.




{ 1 comment }

A stay of execution

by Marianne on 07/14/2014

in Dogs, Home

Soloman up close

Photo: BARC Houston

This is Soloman.  He got to live today.

Today was tough for me.  I’ve been crying on and off since early afternoon.  Maybe my heart is too tender for this, or maybe I just haven’t developed the callus necessary to not be reduced to tears every time I hear about a beautiful dog that has to be put down for some stupid reason.  I really don’t think I want that callus.  But, I guess I’m a little grateful that I don’t have to see it all the time, even though I know it’s happening all the time.  So, maybe there’s that callus, after all.

Soloman A1241434

Photo: BARC Houston

I saw Soloman in an email plea that went out today to the rescue group (Red Collar Rescue) that I volunteer/foster with.  He, and a group of others were scheduled to be put to sleep today, due to overcrowding in the city shelter.  It’s an ugly thing, but there are simply way more dogs getting dumped and abandoned than there is room for.  I’m pretty new to this rescue world, but already I’m fostering 2 dogs, which means four dogs in my home.  I’m also happy to be able to volunteer some of my time to helping some great pets-to-be find their happy forever homes. But, like most of the awesome dog-loving people I’ve met along the way, my house is full!  Maximum dog limit reached!

So, when I saw Soloman, my heart just broke.  I’ve got a huge soft spot for Black Labs.  I literally had to go take a cry break on the couch.  Finally, at the Nth hour, I decided I could sponsor him, which means I pledged to pay his expenses (mainly boarding costs) and Red Collar would pull him. (Red Collar was also at max limit this day, so without a sponsor they would not be able to pull him.)  And of course, I will work double-time helping to find this boy a great home!  There was a scary time when I wasn’t sure if he was already gone or not, but eventually found out he was still alive. Yay!  I also found out there were others that had been hard at work sending out more pleas to save this boy, and I think doing whatever they could to try and keep him at the end of the list.

It’s bittersweet though, because there was another dog on the list — another gorgeous black lab — that also tugged at my heartstrings.  I found out this evening he’s gone.  He was 3 and he looked so friendly and his family turned him in because they were moving. His name was Cole.  I’m screaming inside. And crying still.

ColeRest in peace, little guy.


Photo: BARC Houston

But Soloman is alive, and ready for his freedom ride out of there.  He’ll have to go to boarding for now, but hopefully he will find a forever or foster home very soon.  He’s so beautiful.  I can’t wait to go meet him, and give him a great big hug. Look for more pictures soon!

And so, at the end of the day, I did what I could, and I will go to sleep crying for Cole, but happy for Soloman.   And I will cuddle up with my 4 “girls”, and be grateful for the sweet way they sometimes lay their heads on me, even though they are total pillow hogs, and my legs eventually go numb from not being able to move them.

7/15/2014: UPDATE: Found out this morning a rescue group out of Colorado will be able to take Soloman.  RPM (Rescued Pets Movement) will be transporting him. I know he’ll love it there. I’m happy for him, and so glad he gets a chance for his happy life.

If this story has made you mad, or sad, or left you shaking your head then I invite you to DO SOMETHING!  Donate, Foster, Adopt, Volunteer, Sponsor.  Even just sharing the photos of those looking for homes can give them a better shot at finding homes.

Be sure to check out, and like them on Facebook to see all of their awesome adoptables.    And please consider fostering!


{ 1 comment }

Cauliflower Soup

by Marianne on 06/29/2014

in Eat, Home

Cauliflower Soup

Oh, Cauliflower.  You get such a bum rap.  Raw, you taste a little like halitosis, and roasted you make my entire house smell like the aftermath of a bean-eating contest. But, I love you anyway.  Blended up in a dreamy soup, you are downright lovely.

Cauliflower Soup

The ingredients are simple, as the cauliflower is the star.  Don’t get all heavy-handed with seasonings.  A drizzle of olive oil and fresh cilantro sauce give it a perfect touch of brightness.

Make it.  You owe it cauliflower.

Cauliflower Soup
Recipe type: Soup
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 

Serves: 4-6

  • 1 head Cauliflower (large)
  • 1 Yellow Onion
  • 2 TBLS Olive Oil
  • 3 cloves Garlic
  • 7 cups Chicken Broth
  • 1 Cup water
  • 1 tsp Salt
Cilantro Sauce
  • 1 bunch cilantro leaves (about a cup)
  • ⅓ Cup Olive Oil
  • 1 Serrano Pepper
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • 1 TBLS Cider Vinegar
  • Pinch Black Pepper

  1. In a stock-pot, heat up Olive Oil, and add the onion (diced) and chopped garlic. Sweat onions and the garlic over medium for about 8 minutes until soft and tender.
  2. Add the cauliflower that has been broken into florets, and the water and chicken broth.
  3. Simmer over medium heat for 30 minutes. Add salt to taste.
  4. Blend (in batches) until smooth.
Cilantro Sauce
  1. Add the cilantro, serrano pepper, salt/pepper, Olive Oil and Vinegar into a food processor, and run for about 30 seconds to create a pesto-like sauce.




Mango, Shrimp, and Avocado Salad

June 22, 2014

I don’t know why I love this so much, except that it’s Yummy, on top of Yummy, with some more Yummy stirred in.  And that’s a whole lot of Yummy. You might remember that I was trying to do this crazy Whole30 thing, where I don’t eat anything involving cheese, sugar, wheat, peanuts, alcohol or [...]

Read the full article →

The Whole30 and stuff

June 5, 2014

So my friend Jenn and I are doing this thing called The Whole30, where for 30 days, we eliminate grains, alcohol, dairy, soy, legumes, sugar and sugar substitutes, and various chemicals from our diets.  Sounds crazy, right?  Now, I know that eliminating entire food groups doesn’t necessarily equal healthy, but the basic premise of this [...]

Read the full article →

Zucchini Ginger Soup

June 2, 2014

Summer weather has arrived (with a big thunderous splash) around here, so I’m happy to welcome chilled soups back into the mix.  This little recipe was found in a cookbook (Salad as a Meal: Healthy Main-Dish Salads for Every Season) by Patricia Wells that I picked up a while back. The book has a gazillion [...]

Read the full article →

Bacon Cheeseburger Stuffed Jalapenos

May 18, 2014

When I was a kid, there was often a plate of jalapenos stuffed with something or other hanging out in the fridge… peanut butter, pimiento cheese, cream cheese…whatever my Dad dreamed up.  But I don’t remember if he ever tried stuffing a bacon cheeseburger in one?  He should have. These are some great little poppers [...]

Read the full article →

Homemade Roasted Chicken Broth

May 9, 2014

I love this idea. Take that carcass from the store-bought roasted chicken that you’ve just about picked apart, and make a delicious home-made chicken broth.  Or, technically I guess it would be chicken stock. I think this is genius, and makes me feel (ever so slightly) better about the state of my vegetable drawer.  At [...]

Read the full article →