"I do not claim that I can tell a story as it ought to be told. I only claim to know how a story ought to be told." -Mark Twain


Going to the Dogs!

 Today is my Abraham's birthday. Yes, he shares a birthday with another famous Abraham.  Yes, that's where he got his name. It helped that his "brother" we already had was named Eisenhower. Yes, I love politics, great presidents and sweet, sweet puppies. 

 So last night when I got home from teaching school all day---plus an evening of parent/teacher conferences, I wanted to make Abe (and Ike) a little treat. After all, it was almost Abe's birthday and the pair had been home alone for over 12 hours! 
 I had a couple of cute little dog bone cookie cutters I had bought in Target's dollar section at Christmas time, so I got them out and made the dogs some treats. The cookie cutters came with a recipe, so I just used that. I had everything but the whole wheat flour, but I did not mind getting back out to buy that for the pups. 

 The bone cookie cutter was just an average size and the recipe made 64 of these bones! That is a lot of treats. 

 I made the recipe exactly as the was called for, except the cooking time. The recipe said 40 minutes so the treats would be good and hard. I found that my treats were relatively hard much sooner. Like at about the 20-25 minute mark!  Maybe it is my oven. But if you make these, keep that in mind. Twenty minutes was all we needed. 

 The treats are made with canned pumpkin and a little cinnamon.  When they were cooking, our house smelled like pumpkin pies were cooking. 

 Let me assure you, the treats were big hits. Abe is the type of dog that will eat anything. He will scarf it down. Ike is a little more of a gentleman. He will examine his food first, smell it, then eat with manners. Both of the presidents approved though, no matter how they downed the treats! I text pictures of the treats in the oven to my children. None of them rolled their eyes (or emoticons) at me. One of my daughters suggested I make a batch and take them to the local dog shelter in honor of my pups. That's a great idea. I text my parents the same pic, and they did think I was a little crazy! ha! Hey, I even thought (later) that a heart cookie cutter would have been cute for Valentine's Day....

Abe's Birthday Treats
2 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
2 eggs
1 cup canned pumpkin
3 Tbs. peanut butter
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
4 Tbs. water

 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, mix (with an electric mixer) all the ingredients except the water. After the other ingredients are all mixed, add the water. You may add more water as needed/if needed, but the dough should be fairly dry and stiff and workable. Roll the dough out, use the cookie cutter of your choice and bake. Bake until hard. Mine took 25 minutes, (although the recipe said it could be 40 minutes).  Then give your dog a bone treat! 

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Window Peeping

 Clear back in September, I had traveled back to Hiawatha, Kansas, for the wedding of some friends. We only get back to Kansas (it is over 360 miles from where we now live)twice a year...at the most. Literally, on our drive back home after being there for two days, I saw on Facebook where one of my former students (now grown) was getting rid of all the old wooden windows from his house. 
He and his wife had bought one of the beautiful old homes in town, and they had updated all the old windows. His wife, bless her, knew better than to just dump all the windows and put a call out on FB for someone to come and get them. And there I was, headed AWAY from where those windows were! Just my luck. 

 But luck actually was on my side. Another friend lived just two doors away from my former student and I sent him up to his neighbor to retrieve a window. I told him exactly which window type I wanted (they had posted several kinds on FB). I specifically  wanted one that was 8 big panes, white on one side and brown on the other. I have such good friends. They gave me the exact window I wanted and my other friend stored it in his garage until Christmas when one of my sons went to Kansas for a visit and brought it back. 
 This window is huge and heavy. I plan to use it with the white facing out at times and of course change it around some and have the brown side facing out sometimes. For the time being, I have it propped on a chest in the living room, layered with an antique framed map. 
 When I originally staked claim to a window, I imagined it replacing the gold frame over the mantel on the gianormous mirror. But the window is so tall, that it actually extended about 3/4 of a pane beyond the giant mirror. So when looking at the mirror and window, it looked kind of weird when the mirror suddenly stopped at the top. Too bad it didn't work out though, because the mirror was creating a great reflection on the brown side of the window. Who knows, I might try it again sometime. 
 In the meantime, I love where it is and how it looks. I had the 1930's map framed about six years ago. Then about three years ago I hung the PEACE banner on it for Christmas. I started to take down the banner after Christmas that year, then decided that I liked it up there. After all, we truly do need PEACE all the time, not just Christmas. 
The window represents what I love about my home. It makes me think of that sweet student (now grown) that was one of my all-time favorites. It makes me think of his wise wife that knew the windows didn't belong in the landfill. It makes me think of one of my other favorite friends that walked up and got the window for me and stored it for four months. It makes me think of our wonderful years in Kansas. It makes me think of my son who hauled it all the way back for me and another son who moved it around for me every time I was trying it somewhere new. You can't get those memories from department store merchandise. ....Now I just need to get the giant wardrobe back down to Oklahoma that I bought (online) at a Hiawatha auction...in October!! (Yep, you guessed it...another friend is storing that for me!) 
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