Open Thread: Thursday Night Menu

Here’s TaMara:

Happy first day of autumn. According to my sources summer officially ended yesterday at 10:55 pm MDT. Sigh. I’ve pulled out the sweaters, but have not put away the shorts. JeffW updated us on Homer yesterday. His cast has been removed. No word yet on his permanent placement…


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On to dinner. This is not a very fall oriented menu, I’ll get to those in later weeks. This menu is a quick and flavorful stir-fry of no particular origin. If you can’t find the broad rice noodles, whatever you like will do just fine. I like the broad ones because they hold the sauce and lots of sesame seeds. I keep sesame seeds around like salt and pepper, so I add that at the table and it’s a nice touch to both the carrots and beef dish. The yogurt and pineapple provide a cool finish.
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On the board tonight:
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1. Spicy Beef & Broccoli
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2. Rice Noodles (broad style)
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3. Sweet & Sour Carrots
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4. Crushed pineapple and vanilla yogurt

Recipes and shopping list at the link.








Early Morning Open Thread: Pet Rescues Plus

From commentor Adolphus:

My fiance and I have rescued and adopted a number of animals over the years, she starting long before she met me. The orange dog is Ruby. My fiance adopted her from the local animal rescue years before we met. Sometime in the mid 90’s. I have no cute story about it, she was just lonely and had just lost her previous dog and they just found each other at the local shelter. When we met I was a little leery as I had never been much a dog person, but Ruby really leaped into my heart with all four paws.She was found on the street with some of her puppies over ten years ago and is currently about 15-16 years old. In February of 2008 we were told she only had three months to live due to a series of cancerous growths on various organs. Well, here it is September of 2010 and I would like to say she is still going strong, but she is clearly feeling her age. Her walks are more like slow ambles, she scampers less and less, and she sleeps more and more. While we are afraid she won’t live to see 2011, we are grateful for almost 3 extra years of love.
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The orange cat adopted us. We live in a college town where the students are forever buying or adopting cats, less frequently dogs, and then abandoning them when they graduate or just move on. Because of that there is a real stray cat problem. It is a rare apartment complex that doesn’t have from 3 to 6 to as much as a dozen stray cats lounging around or fighting for food. Even on campus it is not out of place to see strays huddled under buildings or crossing your path on your way to class. Our apartment complex has had between 3 and 6 resident strays since we moved in three years ago. The cat in the photo, we called her Ruby Jr. because of her affection for and resemblance to Ruby, started following us around on our dog walks about 2 years ago. At first she would find us mid-walk and follow us around for awhile but that escalated into meeting us at our door when we came emerged for Ruby’s walks. Then she started sleeping on our car and watching us through our windows. We fed her off and on, the raccoons ate that more often than not. Then a couple of days before Christmas after a chilly walk she zipped in through our front door in front of us. She usually only stayed the evening then wanted let out. A month later she took up permanent residence and was ensconced in time to watch Obama’s inauguration with me on the couch. (I also made a short video for my family and friends back north to introduce them to Ruby Jr.)
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Oh, and the gerbils.
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Open Thread: It’s the Goat that Ties the Vid Together!

Thanks to commentor J. for this link, because right now we desperately need something that doesn’t suck:

Almost as cool as the performers (including the goat, at 2:51) is the Gizmodo story describing how the video was made. One single take, no cuts, no camera tricks — Take #72 out of 124. Don’t miss the link, because the pics are just AWSUM!



Early Morning Open Thread: Multi-Cat Households




From commentor Jacquelyn:

… I adopted Linus from the Humane Society when he was 5 years old. He has an upper respiratory infection at the time and we couldn’t get it to abate. Then his left eye got infected and the lens ulcerated. Did you know there are Veterinary Ophthalmologists? Me neither. She was brilliant and figured out the source of both chronic infections: Linus has been declawed by his previous owners, and their vet cut the bones rather than removing them. One of his “fingers” was infected and as he groomed himself, the infection spread to his lungs and eye. We saved his eye, and fixed his “finger” and he’s a happy, healthy 12 year old now!
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Ying-Mu I got in 2004 when I was about to change jobs. The change meant I no longer worked from home, and Linus would be alone all day. So, I reached out for a kitten. Ying-Mu, now 6, believes he is still the ‘baby’ contrary to reality. I’m attaching a “then” pic… because he was a funny looking kitten, and now he’s gigantic.
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Augie (butterscotch color) was the next addition to the household in early 2006, at which point he was about 2.5. Commenter Satby rescued him from a kill shelter and I loved him on first sight. He was my accident-prone boy when he was younger. In his first 6 months, he broke his right “arm” for which he was splinted and taped up like a florescent mummy. After a week in the tape, he pulled it all off, deemed himself healed, and headed back outside to play. The following year, he broke his face in 4 places. I assume he was a little farther off the ground than he should have been, perhaps up a tree, and came down in one move. After the veterinary surgeon pinned his upper palate and jaw side-to-side (not closed since he cracked them the long way rather than top to bottom), wrapped his tendon around his TMJ to hold the little bone together and fixed his eye socket, a friend of mine agreed to care for him because I had to travel for work. After 3 days of post-op, he decided he was all better and started rough-housing with her 2 cats.
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Biscuit, shown in the same photo with Augie, is a dark tabby I was supposed to babysit for 2 weeks about 3 years ago (thanks Satby)! He was another rescue, this time from a kill shelter. He had a severe tooth infection which I got the vet to take care of. After that initial investment, I opted to keep him. His other favorite “brother” is Linus.
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Finally, Murphy. Murphy walked into my friend’s garage this past January when it was -20F and begged her to take him in. Sadly, she is allergic to cats and so I offered to take him. He is about 2 years old and has stirred up all the other cats magnificently. Where they were complacent, now they are always on the lookout for the brat. He’s a gorgeous and loving boy and really enjoys being in the kitty pile on my bed at night. Fortunately, they don’t use him as the bottom of the stack. He’s the lightest in weight of the five.

(I’m only including 4 of Jacquelyn’s pics, because that’s the maximum number FYWP will allow me.)



Open Thread: FIV Cat Rescue

From commentor David Smith:

This big goof is Ripley, who I adopted in a complicated series of circumstances just shy of three years ago now. At the time, he had found himself in a pretty tight spot. He came down with feline immunodeficiency virus, which meant his previous owners had to give him up.
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A lot of people assume that FIV is like HIV in that eventually it’ll break down the immune system completely and the patient will die of opportunistic diseases. Actually it doesn’t work that way. Cats with FIV, so long as they’re kept indoors and away from uninfected cats (to prevent the spread of the virus and protect them from germs other kitties might carry), can live a perfectly healthy and ordinary life.
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It was the indoor thing that tripped up Ripley. The lease on his owners’ home said no indoor pets, so he wound up in the care of a friend who works with a veterinarian in Seattle. I live in North Carolina, but as it happens, I was going home to Seattle to see my family at the time when that friend piped up on her blog that Ripley needed a new home.
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So I went to Seattle for Thanksgiving, met him, and took him home with me. Ever since then he’s been a wonderful pet – he loves people, and as the photo there suggests, he lived up to my friend’s billing as “a big snuggle bug.”
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I highly recommend, if you’re looking for a singleton cat who you can keep indoors, to give a chance to one with FIV. Some rescues specialize in FIV+ kitties – Purrfect Pals in Seattle is one. For obvious reasons, these guys have a harder time being adopted than most, and many are still euthanized when they test positive, even though they’re not difficult to care for at all. Ripley hasn’t caused me any more expense or trouble than any other cat. Wouldn’t trade him for the world.

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(Anne Laurie adds: I believe Ripley has just taken the Balloon Juice long-distance pet adoption crown. Formerly held, in my thoroughly unscientific poll, by our late rescue papillon Flash, for whom the Spousal Unit flew from Boston to Austin so that Flash could travel as carry-on luggage.)



Early Morning Open Thread: Dog Daze

From commentor Jacy:

This is Wilson, sleeping on Nick.
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We just passed our one-year anniversary of adopting Wilson on August 28th. I wasn’t looking for another dog. We already had two who are old and set in their ways, and a cat who does not suffer fools gladly. But my daughter’s friend volunteers at the local shelter and she called to let me know there was a Boston Terrier who had just come in, so I went down to take a look. I felt no connection with the little Boston, and knew she’d be adopted almost immediately anyway. But as I was walking out, I saw a little dog at the back of one of the runs. He couldn’t get to the front, because the three larger dogs in front were all crowding the gate. He looked pathetic, and as I walked past, he just laid down and put his head on his paws.
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He was in terrible shape. He had a punctured cornea, was missing patches of hair from mange, and was about a third underweight. They had found him running on the highway. When I picked him up, he put his head on my shoulder and just sighed. Well, that was that. A year later he is glossy and fat, and his eye (much to the amazement of the vet, who thought it might have to come out) has healed with just a tiny, cloudy scar.
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Wilson is a terrible little dog. He jumps on the counters when you’re not looking and eats anything he can find. He once ate two pounds of beef jerky, followed by an entire box of snack cakes. That was a fun weekend. He must be constantly touching you, which means he must sleep under the covers with you, with his head on your pillow. If he hears something in the middle the night, like, say, the ice maker, he’s up with a fusillade of barks that would wake the dead. We’ve had to install a permanent baby gate to the living room, because we can’t convince him that that room is NOT OUTSIDE, and he insists on peeing on anything in there.
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But, also, Wilson is 17 pounds of sheer joy in living. Every bowl of kibble is a banquet. Every word of praise a sonnet. Every ride in the car a Caribbean cruise. The boys can carry him around like a dolly all day long and he loves it. If you go out to get the mail and don’t take him, the minute you come back it’s all, “OH, BOY, OH BOY, YOU WERE GONE SO LONG AND NOW YOU’RE BACK, IT’S THE BESTEST DAY EVER!” We are much richer for having him our lives.



Early Morning Open Thread: B&B Rescues



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From commentor Comrade Scott’s Agenda of Rage:

Attached is the one cat (of our current 8) who we actually adopted from a shelter: Elsie. She was adopted as a “companion” to the cat in the second picture, Dandelion, who we brought back from New Orleans just after Katrina in 05 after doing rescue work down there for a group called Muttshack. The first cat we brought back from there suddenly died one night after a heartworm broke lose and lodged in an artery causing a massive heart attack… Dandelion needed someone her own age, thus, Elsie.
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The dog you see in the second picture, Bozo, is another adoptee. Our former neighbor was an 80 year old guy who finally had to move out of his house and the assisted living apartment wouldn’t let him take his dog or two cats. We found homes for the two cats and took in Bozo who is our first dog after being together for 25+ years. He’s great with cats and loves kittens.
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The rest of our cats are strays that came to us after we moved here to East Bumfuck MO (Bonnots Mill MO, we own a B&B, www.dauphinehotel.com). We even carved out a room in the garage. I have an old page up for that: http://www.dauphinehotel.com/dauphine_cats.htm although only 5 of the 10 cats listed are still alive.
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