Fido + Fluffy’s Freebie Friday Prepares for #NationalIceCreamDay

Sunday marks National Ice Cream Day–and we’re celebrating with a free cookbook of special recipes just for your dog! We’ll be sending out the cookbook link only to newsletter…



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DogTipper

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Elderly Man Raises More than $36,000 for Community Cats

Willie Ortiz feeds stray cats in Connecticut
Willie Ortiz is 76 years old, but he hasn’t let that keep him from making a big difference for the cats in his community. The retired gentleman has been feeding feral and stray cats in his Connecticut community every day for more than 20 years. He drives 22 miles each day in his truck to 16 different stops to distribute food paid for with his own money. To help cover the costs, Willie had been collecting and selling scrap metal. Now he has help.

In February 2016, shortly after a story about Willie ran in the Hartford Courant, Willie’s friend, Kathleen Schlentz, set up a GoFundMe page, “Spay, Neuter & feed feral cats,” (sic) to raise money for Willie’s good works. As Willie told People, “I was praying for some help, and the help came, and I was so glad that it came.” As of June 12, 2017, that help has raised more than $ 36,000 to help Willie buy supplies and care for community cats.

Originally the goal was only $ 5,000. The fundraiser was meant to honor “the work that Willie has been doing for feral and stray cats in the Hartford and East Hartford, CT areas.” His friends noted that Willie “has not missed one night of feeding despite the rain, snow, freezing weather or his own health issues.”

Read more about Willie Ortiz and his efforts to help homeless cats.

Halo Pets

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Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes

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Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes
Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Disney Junior. Thank you for supporting the brands that help make Bubby and Bean possible.

One of my favorite childhood memories involves weekend mornings, when I’d get up early with my dad to make Mickey Mouse pancakes together. They weren’t Pinterest-worthy by any means, but I loved everything about them, from the mixing of the batter to “designing” them to the way they tasted. After I became a mom to Essley a few years ago, I couldn’t wait to repeat this tradition with her. And when she turned a year old, we started making our own Mickey Mouse pancakes together. They quickly became her favorite breakfast, and now they’re Emmett’s favorite as well. I’m a very visual person, and I’ll admit that a lot of times when I’m preparing food, the way the finish product looks is even more important to me than how it tastes. With our family Mickey Mouse pancakes, this is not the case. They are rarely symmetrical and their decor is far from fancy. For this meal it’s all about the process and spending time together as a family to create a breakfast that is fun, inspired by a character we love, and perfectly imperfect (just like our family; awwww). Today I’m teaming up with our friends at Disney Junior to share a glimpse into our special Mickey Mouse pancake making tradition (including how to make your own), inspired by one of our favorite shows, Mickey & The Roadster Racers.

Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes
Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes
Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes

INGREDIENTS:

Pancake or Baking Mix (feel free to make from scratch if you’re feeling motivated!)
Eggs (our mix requires this)
Milk (our mix requires this)
Coconut oil or butter
Bananas
Blueberries
Pure maple syrup

Follow your pancake mix to combine necessary ingredients (in our mix, that’s the powder, eggs, and milk). Heat a griddle or large pan to medium heat and melt enough coconut oil (this is what we use) or butter to adequately cover the surface in order to prevent sticking. For each pancake, use either a mixing bowl with a spout, a pitcher, or a ladle to pour batter, first to create the face, then to create two ears that will be attached to the face (at 10 and 2, if you’re looking at the face like a clock). Make sure when you pour the ears that they just barely touch at the edges between the ears and the face to allow room for the pancake to expand. Flip once the underside is golden brown. Repeat with as many pancakes as you’d like, and remove from griddle or pan when each cake is golden on both sides. Then comes the fun part – decorating. We use blueberries for the eyes and sliced bananas for the nose. Sometimes we make larger versions where we add blueberry mouths as well. Really, you can use whatever you have on hand – fruit, nuts, chocolate chips, etc. The whole point is to have fun and get creative with your little ones, and to work together as a family. On Essley’s and ours, we drizzle with maple syrup. Emmett likes his with just fruit.

Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes
Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes
Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes
Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes

Essley decided that we should have a Mickey Mouse pancake making party the morning of July 28th for the premiere of the new episode of Mickey & The Roadster Racers on the Disney Channel, which I thought was a perfect idea. We love all of Disney Junior‘s summertime FRiYAY morning shows (favorites include Sofia the First, Puppy Dog Pals, Lion Guard, and Elena of Avalor), but both kids are really into Mickey & The Roadster Racers right now. They love the fun theme song and Essley is all about the race cars. Robbie and I are fans of the show too, because we love the positive messages and lessons it teaches about friendship and community. And just like the process of creating our special pancakes together as family, the show emphasizes the importance of working together to accomplish things. We’re really looking forward to making our perfectly imperfect Mickey Mouse pancakes and then enjoying them while we watch together (8:30 AM on the 28th, on the Disney Channel).

You can find Disney Junior shows on two different television channels: Disney Junior (a dedicated channel that runs Disney Junior shows all day long), and Disney Channel (which airs Disney Junior shows during the morning block, and usually air new episodes first). You can also find Disney Junior goodness on their Facebook page and on their YouTube. We hope you love them as much as we do!

Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes
Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes
Our Perfectly Imperfect Mickey Mouse Pancakes

Who else makes Mickey Mouse pancakes with your little ones? What is your favorite Disney Junior show?

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Disney Junior. Thank you for supporting the brands that help make Bubby and Bean possible.

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Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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Thank you! My dog flourishes at home with his adop…

Thank you! My dog flourishes at home with his adopted sis and my husband and I. But when strangers come in the house it's something else. Unless we're in a neutral setting, he is pacing, VERY reactive and just a totally different dog. You can't judge a dogs character by their first meet and greet in my opinion. Especially if it's their territory.
BAD RAP Blog

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Red spots in a mudhole

They are awfully prominent.

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Natural History

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Cheddar + Swiss, Fuji Apple, and Avocado Sandwich

Cheddar + Swiss, Fuji Apple, and Avocado Sandwich

This post was sponsored by Sargento as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.

My friends are usually surprised when I tell them that cold sandwiches top my favorite foods list, because they assume that as a vegetarian, I wouldn’t have a lot of options. And I suppose when it comes to traditional sandwiches, you do think of ham or salami or turkey as the main ingredient. For me though, the key ingredient for a really great cold sandwich is a few slices of my favorite cheeses, usually combined with avocado. From there, the possibilities are endless, guys. My newest go-to sandwich (or sammy, as Essley likes to call them) includes crisp Fuji apple slices, hearty multigrain bread, and some truly delicious cheeses – and it is so, so good. It’s easy to put together, perfect for summertime, and full of flavor. And whether you’re a veg or a full on meat fan, you’re going to love it.

Cheese, Fuji Apple, and Avocado Sandwich
Cheese, Fuji Apple, and Avocado Sandwich
Cheese, Fuji Apple, and Avocado Sandwich

Makes 1 sandwich. 

INGREDIENTS
2 pieces of good quality multi grain bread
3 slices of Sargento Swiss Slices
3 slices of Sargento Smokehouse Cheddar™Slices
1/2 Fuji apple (or your favorite apple variety)
1/3-1/2 avocado
stoneground mustard (optional)

Spread a small amount of stoneground mustard on one side of one piece of bread. Cut apple and avocado into thin slices. Layer cheeses, apple slices, and avocado slices on one piece of bread and top with the other piece. Cut sandwich in half and eat. That’s it!

The tart sweetness and crisp texture of the Fuji apple combined with the richness of the avocado, the bold smoky flavor of the Sargento Smokehouse Cheddar™, and the nutty flavor of the Sargento Swiss makes for a truly incredible sandwich. My kids love it (without the mustard), and even my meat sandwich loving husband adores it. It’s the perfect sandwich for lunch, for dinner paired with a spring green salad, for summertime picnics, or to serve at parties.

Cheese, Fuji Apple, and Avocado Sandwich
Cheese, Fuji Apple, and Avocado Sandwich
Cheese, Fuji Apple, and Avocado Sandwich

While the combination of ingredients truly makes this sandwich, the star of the show is the Sargento® Slices, which are always at the top of our list when we head to Meijer for our weekly groceries. (Psssst… If you head over to your local Meijer between now and July 15th, make sure to use the mperks offer for $ 1 off 2 Sargento® Slices products! In order to use the mperks offer, users must be an mperks Member. Just search “Sargento” for the coupon offer and you’re good to go.) Sargento®  100% Real, Natural Cheese comes in a variety of slices (in addition those included in this sandwich, my other favorites are Sharp Cheddar and Ultra Thin® Provolone) that are perfect for whatever sandwich you’re making (or any recipe that calls for sliced cheese). Whenever I bring the kids to Meijer with me, Essley heads right over to the cheese aisle and grabs a pack of Sargento® slices (right before she starts unsuccessfully begging for sugar and preservative filled packaged desserts, but that’s a whole different post). Both she and Emmett love eating them alone as a snack in addition to in the sandwiches Robbie and I make. It’s a win win for the whole family.

What is your favorite cold sandwich recipe? Who else is a Sargento® Slices fan? Cold sandwiches forever!

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Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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WHOLE Lot of Difference: SPCA of Westchester

The SPCA of Westchester is a not-for-profit animal welfare organization dedicated to saving homeless, abused and abandoned animals and to protecting animals from cruelty and neglect through education and enforcement of humane laws.

Halo is proud to partner with Freekibble.com and GreaterGood.org to make a WHOLE lot of difference for shelter pets together.

Here’s what SPCA of Westchester had to say about a recent Halo Pets donation:

Being able to count on having a consistent, nutritious diet each month for our dogs gives us such peace of mind as we know our dogs will stay healthy and feel their best, which makes it easier to find them their new families and homes.

Wrinkles from SPCA of WestchesterAbandoned when his owner who had to move, Wrinkles was left home all alone … neglected for far too long. When a Good Samaritan finally rushed him to the SPCA of Westchester, he urgently needed veterinary care — including costly eye surgery — and is receiving medical care for severe ear infections, eye scabbing and other painful conditions that resulted from his neglect. He had hair loss and patches of skin that were raw. And yet, this sweet boy never stopped wagging his tail!

Clearly Wrinkles was not receiving a healthy diet and was very overweight. We were concerned he’d been given people food for so long that he wouldn’t accept dog food. Luckily, he loved the Halo. And the difference in his skin and hair was like night and day. He has also gotten back to a much healthier weight now!

“Being able to count on having a consistent, nutritious diet each month for our dogs gives us such peace of mind as we know our dogs will stay healthy and feel their best, which makes it easier to find them their new families and homes.”

Peanut’s story: The SPCA of Westchester’s Humane Law Enforcement (HLE) Director Ernest Lungaro has arrested Vincent Marable, who was charged with animal cruelty for confining a dog in the basement of his building without adequate food or water. The young pit bull mix, now named Peanut, was covered in filth, emaciated, dehydrated and suffered from sores all over his body as a result of flea infestation. He was so weak he could barely stand on his feet.

The Mount Vernon Animal Shelter had received an anonymous tip about the neglected animal, and immediately notified the SPCA of Westchester. The dog was brought to a veterinarian for medical attention, then transferred to the SPCA’s Simpson Clinic for evaluation, further treatment and rehabilitation.

Peanut’s before and after photo is a perfect example of the amazing effects a healthy, nutritious meals can have!”

Peanut from SPCA of Westchester

Thank you SPCA of Westchester for making a WHOLE lot of difference for pets in your community.

Interested in adopting Peanut? He is still available at SPCA of Westchester.

When you choose Halo pet food, made from natural, whole food ingredients, your pet won’t be the only one with a radiant coat, clear eyes and renewed energy. Halo feeds it forward, donating over 1.5 million bowls annually. As always, Halo will donate a bowl to a shelter every time YOU buy. Thank you for helping #HaloFeeditForward.

 

Halo Pets

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Dogs and Kids Growing Up Together

From The Dodo: Two of my favorite topics, kids and dogs! Until next time, Good day, and good dog!


Doggies.com Dog Blog

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It may vary state to state but overall, they are n…

It may vary state to state but overall, they are non-discriminatory.
BAD RAP Blog

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Happy 4th!

Here in the states, we celebrate Independence Day tomorrow, which is one of my favorite days of the year. It’s the quintessential summer holiday, and I’m a huge fan of all of the summertime stereotypes that go along with it – sparklers, watermelon, bare feet, cook outs, sprinklers, outdoor parties, popsicles, cold beer, and fireworks.

This year 4th of July will be a little different for my family, as it’s our first one without my stepdad, who passed away in January. Every summer he and my mom threw a big party on the 4th, and I will always associate the holiday with him. This year my aunt is throwing his party for him, in his honor. As sad as it feels not to have him to celebrate with us, it will be nice to honor him in this way.

If you’re looking for some fun last minute ideas for tomorrow, here are 10 great 4th of July themed recipes and an easy 4th of July banner with free printable. Whatever you plans, I hope you have a great day! We’ll be back here with a new post on Wednesday. In the meantime, you can follow along with us on our Instagram feed and stories. (And that’s Essley and Emmett on the 4th last year, in the photo above. They look like such little babes!)

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Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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