Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Wordless Wednesday ... or Hushed Halloween

IMG_1852 Zim

Play bows,
Zim

PS:  Stay safe tonight, friends!  It can be a scary night for us pups and kit-cats, too!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Hunter's Moon

Ha roo, pups and cool cats!  It's me - Zim.  Up here.

DSCN4576 Zim on the Cat Walk

Up on the catwalk.  Can you see me?

DSCN4579 Zim on the Cat Walk
"Ha roo!"

How about now?  Is that better?

Up here on the catwalk, I can get a great view of all kinds of stuff!  I can see the living room, the front door, even out the front windows!  And do you know what I could see out that set of windows last night?  The full moon!  It was gorgeous - so I sent Mom outside to shoot it!

Here is moonrise!

DSCN4582 29 OCT 12 Full Moon
Moon and sticks

That's our neighbors' tree.  Mom thinks it adds ambiance.  Me?  I love it.  It reminds me of my buddy Goose and his love of a wonderful stick.

Here's the full Hunter's Moon, high above us!

DSCN4602 29 OCT 12 Full Moon
"Ha rooOOOoooOOOOooooo!!!!"

Oh.  Sorry.  I couldn't help myself.

We also had a lovely view of the moon as it was setting this morning!

IMG_1960 30 OCT 12 Moonset
Moonset over Manhattan

What a gorgeous way to start the day!  Hope it's a great one for all of you!

Play bows,
Zim

Monday, October 29, 2012

Maybe on Monday

Woo, everypup and everycat!  It's me, Dave, here with the best kid brother a guy could ask for - Zim.  So, there we were, minding our own business, being the perfectly well-behaved Siber-boys that we are, when for some bizarre reason Mom called us over and asked us if we were up to something.  We used the best defense God blessed us with - the ability to look cute and innocent in a split second:

IMG_1846 Zim and Dave
"Aw, Mom!  How could you even ASK such a question?!?"
"Yeah, really, Mom.  Look at how cute we are!"

Now ... between us friends here in BlogLand ... were Zim and I up to something?  

...

Maybe.  Ha woo.

Luv,
Dave

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Serene Scenery Sunday

Ha roo, pups and cool cats!  I have a real mishmash for you this week for Serene Scenery Sunday, but I sure hope the pix help you find a little bit of that lovely inner peace.  Ready to enter the Zen of Zim Zone?

Let's start with a little snoofing of our burgundy-colored Mums!

IMG_1814

Aren't they gorgeous?  And the mulch that Mom put in there is pretty tasty, too.  ... in case anyone might wonder.  Not that I'd try to snarf any.  ...  Moving right along -

I hit the Kansas Ocean a couple times during the week!

IMG_1858
Me at the KSO

I love the rich colors and warm sun.  (And the cold temperatures!)

IMG_1857

As you can see, the tide is incredibly low!  Maybe if we have a gazillion feet of snow this Winter, it'll help out the sea level!  Wouldn't that be great?!?

Speaking of great, Dave and I had a lot of wonderful walks together this week -

IMG_1363
"Isn't this great, Zim?"
"It's the best, Davy!"

I love it when we can all go on walks together!  We all do!  

Also - guess who dropped by to enjoy a stroll around our garden?

IMG_1883
"Ha roo, Fluffy Black Cat!"

It's my friend, Fluffy Black!  Can you see her down there?!?  Here's another look:

IMG_1884
"Be safe, FBC!"

I think she was going to go try out the neighbors' trampoline.  I hope she didn't try any crazy back flips or anything.  Oh!  And can you see Dave's reflection in the window?  (Look right above where Fluffy Black is!)  While I found serenity in looking at Fluffy Black, Dave found serenity in looking at Mom!  Yep.  Something for everyone here on Serene Scenery Sunday!

Are you feeling mighty mellow?  I sure am!  I hope you've enjoyed your trip into the Zen of Zim Zone.    Have a great Sunday!

Play bows,
Zim

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Week In Review

...or at least part of it!

Ha roo, pups and cool cats!  It's me, Zim.  I thought I'd show you a few miscellaneous glimpses into our activities from the past week.  Ready to take a look?

In the afternoons, after lunch and a walk, Dave likes to do this:

IMG_1844 Dave
"I'm just gonna catch 40 winks, OK?"

Me?  I'm fired up and like to go on an adventure.  Here I am, getting buckled in the other afternoon:

IMG_1850 Zim
"Yep.  Tighten it in a bit and I'm ready to roll, Mom!"

Mom and I usually don't have a predetermined destination - we just go where the road leads us!

IMG_1791 Zim
"COWS!"

For whatever reason, I did not get to go meet those cows.  

Dave did a lot of this during our evenings:

IMG_1723 Dave
"What's on TV, Mom?"

He loves that!

Also this week, our temperature "highs" for the day dropped by 40 degrees (ha roo!) so Dave and I made sure to celebrate by doing this:

IMG_1707 Dave and Zim
"C'mon!  Let's go!"
"Yeah, Mom, step it up!"

It's ... almost like Mom's not as happy with this great change in the temps as we are.  Strange.  She did take us on extra walks, though.  What a trooper.  I thought a reward was due, so I chose our route for the afternoon adventure with Mom in mind:

IMG_1825 Zim at Starbucks
"Great idea!  Thanks, Zimmie!"
"Sure, M--oooh, look!  People!"

She got a nice hot beverage and I got to people-watch!  Something for everybody!

I hope all of you had a wonderful week!  Enjoy the weekend!

Play bows,
Zim

Friday, October 26, 2012

Photo Finish Friday: I See A Trend Here...

Ha roo, pups and cool cats!  It's me, Zim!  Hey, remember last week when I took some treats over to the KSU vet school for our Vet Tech's pups?  I forgot to show you what was going on out front!  Check out the scene:

IMG_1690 Zim
"Wowzers!"

That wasn't the kind of "cat" I was expecting to see there!

IMG_1689 Zim

There were orange cats all over the place, making a real mess-a-roo out of things!

IMG_1692 Zim
"Ooh!  A big candy corn thing!"

It was cool that there was a giant candy corn in the parking lot, but I noticed something very disturbing right there by the building ...

IMG_1693 Zim
"Wait a minute!  Those branches!  This could only mean one thing!"

Can you see all those branches over there?  There's only one place they could have come from!

IMG_1694 Zim
"GASP!"

The Great Tree of Messages?!?  They're taking out the Great Tree of Messages?!!?  Where are we going to do our ... oh.  The Porta-Potty.  Maybe that's the answer.  Hmm.  Interesting.

Meanwhile, a bit closer to home ... in fact just next door ...

IMG_1811 Zim
"Wowzers!"

Does anyone else see a trend here?  And NO, I had nothing to do with the  destruction  construction at either location!  Honest!

Play bows,
Zim

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Creative Solutions

Woo, everypup and everycat.  It's me - Dave.  As you might have heard by now, our dad was out of town for a while - I'm here to let you know that my kid brother Zim and I took really, really good care of Mom while he was on his trip.  I thought I'd share how we worked together to keep things on an even, happy keel.  Ready to take a look?

Saturday night, we settled in to watch our Kansas State Wildcat football team take on West Virginia!  I helped Mom turn the TV on and we settled in to watch what would be quite the decisive victory!

IMG_1760 Dave
"Woo!  Go 'Cats!  And ... how 'bout a tummy rub?"

I got up to get a beverage and when I got back ...

IMG_1762 Zim
"Hey, Dave.  The 'Cats scored again!"

Wait a minute!

IMG_1765 Dave & Zim
"That's my mom ... and my quilt ... and my kid brother?!?"

Haven't we already been down this road?  

Then I realized Zim was just making sure Mom wasn't lonely, since Dad wasn't there and I was out getting my liquid refreshment ... for all of 2 minutes.  But now ... what to do?

IMG_1767 Dave & Zim
"Wait a minute!  I have an idea!"

Being the creative guy that I am, I came up with an idea that worked out great:

IMG_1774 Dave, me, Zim
Me (Davy), my mom, and Zim

I think we were all happy with that one!

Luv,
Dave

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Dad's Home!

Ha roo, pups and kit-cats!  It's me - Zim!  Our dad's been out of town but guess what?!?  He came home last night!  This can only mean one thing:

IMG_1183cartoon Zim and Mike
"DAD!!!  Ha roo, Dad!"
"ZIMMIE!!!"

Time to play!!!

Play bows,
Zim

Monday, October 22, 2012

Soup-er!

Ha roo, pups and cool cats!  It's me, Zim!  As some long-time readers of the Ao4 Digest may know, I'm a huge fan of kitchen appliances.  As a Drill Sergeant, it is my duty to inspect new equipment and help test it out.  Imagine my delight when the FedEx man dropped this baby off on our doorstep last week:

IMG_1636 Drill SGT Zim
"A slow cooker that also roasts, browns/sautés, and steams?!?  WOWZERS!"

Wowzers!  How exciting is that?!?   There was only one thing to do -

IMG_1644 Zim
"Let's fire this baby up, Mom!"

We had to test drive it - right?!!?

I suggested we make some steamed Stinky Goodness, but Mom opted for Onion Soup instead.  Hmm.  Does anyone know what "Not a snowball's chance at the Equator" means?  Hmm.  She must have wanted to try out the sauté feature.  Fair enough!  Mom shared a couple pix on FaceBook and her friends wanted the recipe.  It's Mom's old standby recipe that is in her head, not written down, so I thought I'd take a shot at writing it up for everyone.  PLEASE NOTE:  Absolutely NO onion soup for us pups and kit-cats!!!  Sorry.  Bipeds only.

Ready to start cooking?  Here's what you'll need:

10 large sweet onions (use Vidalia if you can, yellow otherwise)
3 Tablespoons of butter (or for our friends in the south, buttah)
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
+/- 2 cups white wine  (Mom used a lovely Riesling; the better the wine, the better the soup)
2 cups chicken broth (or half chicken, half beef)
10 oz. apple juice or cider
basil, thyme, etc. to taste (I have no idea what that means - add green dried herbs that smell good together)
Shredded Parmesan Cheese

Now for the action!  Peel and trim the ends off the onions.  Slice into half-moons.  Set the new appliance to Sauté/300℉.  (If you're doing this on the stove, heat a Dutch oven on medium/low.)  Melt butter ...

IMG_1727 Onions going into the pot

... then start layering in the onions -- some onions, then Kosher salt, more onions, more salt, etc.  Do NOT stir until the onions have sweated down - 15 minutes or so.  (Mom has a hard time with that one - but really, it's best.  Leave it alone.)

IMG_1728 Sautéing onions
"Leave it!" as they say.

After the onions have cooked down, stir occasionally until they're a wonderful, rich caramel color like this:

IMG_1731 Caramelizing onions
Mom wanted to eat them right then and there.  Just to let you know.

That could take anywhere from 30-60 minutes, depending on how your heat source is doing.  Be patient!

Now add enough wine to cover the onions.  Increase the heat, stir often, and reduce the wine to a syrupy consistency.  (If you're on the stove top, crank up the heat to high!)  Add the broth, apple juice and herbs.  Reduce heat, switch over to crock pot mode, cover, and leave for a couple hours.  (On the stove, turn to low, cover, and simmer until you're hungry.)

In the meantime, do this:

IMG_1783 Zim and Dave
"Eyes... RIGHT!"

Dave and I like to work on our military drills while out on patrol.

Where were we?  Oh, right.  The soup.  By the time you get home, this is what your soup should look like:

IMG_1737 Onion Soup
Soup's on!

All that's left to do now is to enjoy!  Sometimes, Mom ladles it into bowls, tops with a slice of crusty bread and shredded Parmesan, then sticks it under the broiler to brown the cheese.  This weekend, she skipped that stage - she made some flatbread to have on the side and just tossed some Parm on top of the soup like so:

IMG_1744 Onion Soup

Looks like a soup-er Fall meal to me!  (Oh, please - you had to see that one coming, didn't you?  Ha roo roo roo!)

I'll add this recipe to our sidebar, in case anyone wants to refer back to it.  If you try it out, please let us know what you think -- and remember, no onions for us quadrupeds!  (But treats and walks are great ideas!)

Play bows,
Zim

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Serene Scenery Sunday

Ha roo, pups and cool cats!  It's me - Zim - here with Serene Scenery Sunday.  I have a collection of a bunch of different things that made us feel that inner calmness; I hope I can spread some of that tranquility around through our photos.  Ready?

Let's start with a dynamic sunset:

IMG_1676 17 OCT 12

Those colors are so warm and wonderful, aren't they?

Here's last night's sunset:

IMG_1757 20 OCT 12 sunset

Mom took that down the street when Dave and I were taking her on an after-dinner walk.  Here's what the sky looked like toward the south(ish):

IMG_1755 20 OCT 12 skies

There was an explosion of color all over the place!  That's the moon up there in the upper third of the picture.  It was a little bit cloudy.

The skies cleared up later on and the stars were just stunning!  Dave and I had read about the Orionid meteor shower and that there would be great viewing overnight.  We set our internal clocks and got Mom up at 0200 this morning to go out and enjoy it.  We took a walk to the end of the street and saw a couple shooting stars!  It was really cool!  We don't have any photos of that, but here we are from a walk later this morning:

IMG_1782 Zim and Dave
Me and Dave on Morning Patrol

Pretend it's dark, starry, and that we're on the sidewalk instead of the street, and you're there!

Speaking of being places ...

IMG_1718 Zim

I don't really care where Mom and I go on our afternoon adventures, but I do insist that Mom puts the Jay Sekulow Show on the radio.  I don't "settle" into my serenity zone until she does.

Flower-wise ... our Mums are pretty much the only things still blooming.  Here's a look at the Burgundy ones by our mailbox:

IMG_1620 Mums

They've really filled in nicely this year.  Let's stick our snooters in for a close-up:

IMG_1622 Mums

What a great burst of color!

We've had a couple light frosts, so our sunflowers are gone.  We did take this picture before they got zapped out and wanted to share it with you:

DSCN4508 Sunflowers

We Kansans can't get enough of our sunflowers!  Mom even likes them when they're starting to fizzle out for the year.  It's a sign of the changing of the seasons ... and ... given that it's Serene Scenery Sunday, I'll share another reason with you, with one of the special pix Mom likes to do.

DSCN4511Isaiah40_8

What a great reminder!

Have a wonderful Sunday!

Play bows,
Zim

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Saturday Decisions

Woo, everypup and everycat.  It's me - Dave.  It's Saturday - a day to kick back, relax, and have some fun!  I can't decide what to do today.  Zim and I have already taken Mom on a couple walks, but now...

Do I want to go outside ...

IMG_1665 Dave

... and play some football?

IMG_1664 Dave
"Are you ready for some football?"

Or should I stay in and hang out with Purple Panda for a while?  That sounds like fun!

Here we are, having a staring contest ...

IMG_1412 Dave

IMG_1413 Dave
"Hey, Dave ... what's that over there?!?"
"Where?!?!"

Ha.  Purple Panda won that round with the old "Made You Look" move.  

IMG_1415 Dave
"He's a tricky Panda!"

Don't worry.  I'll get him next time around.

IMG_1419 Dave
"Let's settle in for a nap, Purple!"

And now ... I think it's time for a late morning snooze!

Have a wonderful Saturday, everyone!

Luv,
Dave