Monday, November 28, 2011

Tough times and cute Santa/dog pictures

I had another job interview last week, only the fourth one I've managed to score this year, and the answer was a no. So close. We continue to plug along. At least the toy business is starting to pick up for Christmas, so that makes things better for a bit. Still, we've had real estate agents out to appraise the house and talk about selling the little farm, and we've put in for a modification - if we can hold out long enough to get it.

To cheer myself up I did a photo session at Everyday Dog for Christmas. What could be more fun than photographing dogs on Santa's lap? Most of these folks were our friends from training class anyway, and it's always fun to photograph friend's dogs, since we know them so well.

This is the 'Everyday Dog' family - Blaze, Figgy, Kiwi, and Chunky

And my favorite of all the pictures was Santa trying to hang onto the wiggliest puppy I've ever seen!

What a great day! All proceeds went to benefit PUFA, People United For Animals, which offers low-cost spay & neuters.


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Time for a new canopy cover

Had a little wind/rain storm, woke up to find this! 

These vinyl covers deteriorate in the sunlight, and tear apart about every year/half. I knew it was coming, but I hoped it would hold out through the winter.


Saturday, November 19, 2011

More fall colors

Maple in the parking lot at the grocery store

Leaves on the ground. Valentine's Day colors!

Oil in the parking lot. 



Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Under my desk...

Navi & Barclay are snuggled up together, keeping my feet warm.

Last week we sent Jack off to his new/old home. I contacted his previous owners, the ones who'd given him to us two years ago. They had said they wanted to know if we ever needed to rehome him, so I dug around and found their email and contacted them. They were delighted, because they had just moved into a home with a fenced backyard, and their daughter had been wanting a dog, and missing Jack ever since they gave him away! So I was happy to hand him back over to them. They seem like super nice people, and Jack was in their family first to begin with. That seems like a happy ending. Life is much more peaceful around here with only two dogs to care for, and I can give these two more attention. I think everyone is happy.


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Canned Chicken Soup

Yesterday we went grocery shopping and got a good deal on a half dozen bone-in chicken breasts. I brought them home and de-boned them, and froze most of them, and then I roasted the bones with some onions. When those were good and browned, I put them in a stock pot with carrots, garlic and some dried herbs. I let them simmer until after dinner, about 6 hours later. Then I cooled it off and popped it in the fridge over night.

This morning I skimmed off the fat and heated the stock back up, and added diced carrots, onions, garlic, corn, and more herbs, until it tasted good. I also added two chicken breasts, cut up into small cubes. Once that was all cooked through I hot-packed it into quart jars and pressure canned it using instructions from the University of Georgia So Easy To Preserve book. UG is the nations testing kitchen for safe home-preservation recipes, so I know that's a good book to work from.

This was my first attempt at pressure canning soup. I decided to try it because a few weeks I made some soup that came out fantastic, and I froze it and enjoyed it for several lunches, so I thought canning some homemade soup would be just as nice. I canned 7 quarts, and one didn't turn out, the lid didn't seal for some reason. The rest all turned out ok, so I have 6 quarts for the cupboard, and one in the fridge. I can't wait to try them out and see how they taste after being canned for a while.


Tuesday, November 01, 2011

More pictures of fall

I liked the heart-shaped leaf behind this one...

Bamboo doesn't care that it's fal. I liked the way the wind rustled the leaves when I snapped the picture and made them blurry in spots