Healthy Dog Treats

I have recently taken up dehydrating foods and I’ll be posting more about that another time, but right now I want to share some healthy dog treat recipes because I told Laura of Riddle from the Middle that I would share a few of them.

In addition to the fact that dehydrated foods take up a lot less space than an equivalent amount of rehydrated foods would, I like that I can make healthy dog treats without preservatives and other unknown ingredients for my furry girl. I have done sweet potato treats for her, at a cost far lower than buying. I estimate that I can get about 12 ounces of sweet potato treats (dried weight) for less than $5.00. It costs about three times that to buy them. You could also make pumpkin treats using the same method.


Slice sweet potato about 1/4” thick (crosswise or lengthwise), dehydrate at the highest temperature (145-155 F) for 8-10 hours for chewy treats. I dried miine for about 12 hours because I wanted them crisper, using the 250 watt unit. A higher wattage unit will take less time.

I did a batch of chicken jerky but I preboiled the chicken tenders first and I was not happy with them. I’ve bought more tenders to do when I finish the sweet potatoes, and I wll use a meat mallet to get them down to 1/4” to 3/8” thickness, then dehydrate at the highest temperature your dehydrator allows, preferably 165 F. For safety’s sake, when they are done, bake at 350 F in your oven for ten minutes. Doing this reduces the posssibility of bacterial issues.

I have a couple of other dog treat recipes I will share that could probably also be done in your oven. I’ll indicate whether I’ve tried them yet or not.


  • 1/2 cup of pureed pumpkin (canned or fresh)
  • 2 tablespoons of coconut oil, softened
  • 4 tablespoons of water, plus more if needed
  • 2 cups of whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • Pre-heat oven to 350 degree F.
  • Mix the pumpkin, softened coconut oil, and water together in a large bowl.
  • Then mix in the flour, cinnamon, baking soda, and baking powder
  • Mix it a bit and then stir in the egg.
  • Continue to stir until it’s ALL combined. This might take a good minutes and feel free to add a touch more water in order to get all of the mixture into one solid, slightly sticky ball.
  • Once done, roll the dough out on a floured surface to ~1/4 inch thick.
  • Using a cookie cutter, cut out treats. These can be as small or as large as you want them (depending on the size of your dogs. I realize not everyone has giant dogs like me)
  • Place prepared dough treats on a lined/ greased baking sheet and bake for ~30 minutes (depending on size) or until dough has hardened.
  • Let cool and enjoy your pups excitement!

I made these and Shasta says they’re good. Although Shasta is a food hound, and isn’t hard to please.


  • Sunflower seeds, unsalted, ¼ cup
  • Flour, two cups
  • Chopped apples, ½ cup
  • ¼ cup peas, carrots, or any other vegetable your dog prefer
  • powdered oats, ¼ cup
  • Peanut butter, one cup
  • rolled oats, one cup
  • Molasses, one cup (you can substitute dark corn syrup or maple syrup)

In a large bowl, combine all the ingredients except the molasses. Then, when you have mixed it well, add the molasses and blend well. Make sure to add some additional oats if the dough is not stiff enough. On a cutting board, roll it out and cut into squares and shapes. Or you can use a cookie cutter.

Place on the tray and put it in the dehydrator. Set the temperature at one hundred and forty – five to one hundred and fifty – five degrees F. Dry the meal for about four hours or more if necessary. Make sure that there is no moisture left and they are very dry.

I haven’t tried this one yet, but will as soon as I can.

The caveat to all of this is that yes, it takes some time. I have the benefit of having lots of time as well as living alone so I don’t have to be concerned about taking care of a family. I worry about commercial dog treats because of too many incidents of them being contaminated and causing illness, or worse, death. I also have to be concerned about costs. All of these are best stored in a cool, dark place. I will store excess in vacuum sealed bags in my refrigerator, but I like having them readily available on the counter too, so I found some 1/2 gallon amber colored mason jars to store the “in-use” batches.

*I wish I could give credit to those who published these recipes initially, but I did so much wandering around on the internet, I fail to remember where I found them, and I did not make notes because I did not think about sharing at that time.



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We’ve Been Talking

We have – myself and I – been having quite a conversation this morning. Myself can be quite a nag, she really can. I try to resist her. I try to ignore her. She doesn’t give up easily.

So, I’m sitting here playing solitaire. Because. Because I feel like it. Because in the nearly 4 hours I’ve been up today, I have done some things. Myself says, “yeah, like what?” I respond that I have had my coffee. Myself is not impressed. I have put away the sweet potatoes I dehydrated as treats for my Shasta. Myself is still not impressed. I have gotten dressed, albeit only a few minutes ago, but don’t let’s get picky, I say. Myself just snickers. I have put more green beans in the dehydrator, and it is industriously dehydrating behind me. At the end of the day, I can show you what has been accomplished.

Myself is persistent, and not particularly kind about all of this. Myself says “Big deal! Look how much more needs to be done. This window you’re sitting next to needs to be washed, floors need to be vacuumed”. I say, well, yes, but when I checked the air quality earlier it was unhealthy for sensitiive groups. I am a sensitive group, all by myself. Myself was still not impressed. Fine, I said! Oh look, the air has cleared. Why don’t I just go wash a couple of windows. 

And I did. I washed the indow next to me, and just to prove I can be constructive and productive, and all those uctive things, I also washed the windows in the door in here. But now I must wait for my magic window drying cloth that absolutely does dry windows streak free to dry out before I can do more.

Myself likes to snicker, almost as much as she likes to nag. If I could get her to go into a closet, I’d close her up in there. But that would only work if I had a closet door that locked. Note to self: consider getting a lock for a closet door. 

Finally I told myself that I will go out this afternoon and pick up some pine cones, okay? Myself said, fine – as long as you do that, I’ll go back to my corner and let you enjoy your lunch in peace.

I am enjoying the quiet. I am going to play more solitaire. Proof there are some victories in life. Temporary though they may be.

My crabapple trees out front have been very productive this year. They are both loaded and waiting for the birds. I would love to show you a photo, but WordPress has gone and changed things again, so while I got the photo uploaded to my library I have not been able to figure out how to add it to this post. Maybe next time.

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Why I’m Not a Teacher #humor #teaching #ThrowbackThursday

I’m dedicating this to my two kids, both of whom are teachers. And to all of those who support Betsy DeVos and the lack of funding and interest in the schools. Read and learn.

Barb Taub

NOTE: I’m visiting my sister the teacher, and remembered this post I wrote several years back.

“Good news. You get to teach my students about getting a job,” said my sister.

She had just picked me up at LAX after a flight from England on which I was trapped next to an extremely enthusiastic sleep-farter. As far as I could tell, the flight had entered another dimension where my perceived flight time expanded to about 3 ½ days of inhaling my seatmate’s contributions to global warming, giving me time to watch every movie including those involving animated rodents. The combination of jet lag, Disney show tunes, and oxygen deprivation (they wouldn’t let me use the oxygen mask, so I had to spend the flight with a TicTac up each nostril) is the only explanation for why I didn’t get back on that plane immediately. That, and I’m scared of my sister. I…

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I was going to share my world with Embeecee this morning, but that was before I remembered that this was a day for remembering. September 11. An historic day. Will our children learn about this in school? Will our children learn about so many of our historic days, good and bad? I hope so, because we must learn from our history (although I doubt our government has).

So – I remember. I remember when JFK was shot. I had just entered the post office in my small town. The radio was on and there was a heavy sense of doom and gloom in the air. I rushed home, and spent the next several days in front of my TV. Disbelieving, not understanding. How can people do these things to people?

I remember when Martin Luther King was shot. I remember when Bobby Kennedy was shot. It seems that it is those who work hard to protect our freedoms, to try to teach tolerance and understanding, are those who are under attack. How can people do these things to people?

I remember Sandy Hook. I remember Newtown. I remember Parkland. I remember weapons of death falling into the wrong hands, because in our society we have a mania for protecting our right to have those guns – those weapons of death. We truly have no need for the kinds of weapons used in so many of these killings – we do not need high capacity, high velocity weapons of death and destruction. Hunting rifles, hand guns, certainly – provided strict regulations have been met. Mental health, stability, lack of violent history – not unreasonable things to require.

I remember (via my history books) that when the amendment protecting our right to bear arms was written, it was a time when we had no organized military. When any man might be expected to grab his gun and join others to protect our country, our people, our freedoms. That no longer applies, so why not re-evaluate, rewrite, use some common sense. Why do we have to be so blindly defensive about this right?

Of course, 9/11 did not involve guns. It involved extremism, lack of awareness or alertness on our part – and the actions and the men who committed this horror should be condemned. But that does not mean all people of their race should be condemned. All people of any race should never be condemned, or rejected, or villified. Each race has its rotten fruit, sadly. 

On this day of remembering, of wondering how people can do these things to people, I wish that our society would relearn common sense, tolerance, compromise, kindness, honesty, integrity, honor – all things our government officials fail to demonstrate. Those who should be role models, model for the bad, not the good. Our government foments the anger and hatred and injustice these acts that we remember create.

How can people do these things to people?

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Share Your World – September

Embeecee’s post has been in my inbox for nearly a week now, and I’m not sure why I haven’t done something about it sooner. I was at my daughter’s for nearly a week and was there when her challenge was posted, but I’ve been home for a few days now. No excuse. Probably sheer laziness.

In any case, here goes:

When you are old, what do you think children will ask you to tell stories about?   If you are ‘old’ (a term with different meanings for everyone); what stories do you tell your grandchildren?   I am old, at least in years lived. When I was younger I used to share the stories of my youth, the “old days”, when I “had to walk to school through snow ten feet deep and temperatures of -30F” – well, not quite that bad, but I did exaggerate things a  bit when they were whining about something they had to do. I didn’t live near my grandchildren at a time when these stories would have been effective. Or possibly listened to.

When did something start out badly for you but in the end, it was great? I don’t have an answer for that. I can think of things that started off just great, but ended badly. I think when I started off on something new even though it was most likely with trepidation, i felt like it would be a new adventure for me and I didn’t think it was a bad thing. Unless it was moving one more time, three months after we just got here, and I was surely going to perish without my “new” friends, and would never ever make any other friends. But I always did. So I guess I did have an answer for that.

What do you think you are much better at than you actually are?   Maybe this one’s kinda mean…thoughts?  Since I tend to downgrade my skills or talents rather than go the opposite direction, I really don’t have an answer for this. That’s not to say there is nothing I think I’m better at than I am, I just don’t know what it might be.

What would be the worst thing to hear as you are going under anesthesia before surgery?  The surgeon or anesthesiologist saying “Oh man, I really shouldn’t have stayed out so late drinking last night – my head is really fuzzy”.

and we’ll keep the affirmations and upbeat question just as Cee had it:

What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week?  Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination. My time at my daughter’s, looking out her window at her view, watching the sun rise over the hills to the east, just being with her. If my son could have been there too, it would have been unbeatable.

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Share Your World – August 27, 2018

It is a sunny morning – finally a morning free of smoke in the air, so I can see the clouds building in the eastern sky – wishing those clouds meant we would get a nice, gentle, soaking rain without thunder or lightning. While there are other things I could be doing – that I don’t want to do – I think I’ll join Cee and friends and share more of my world.

Do you prefer eating foods with nuts or no nuts? Well now, that depends on what food we’re talking about. I like nuts – in cookies, cakes, salads – Hmmm. I guess the answer to that shouldn’t have any “it depends” in it because I think I’d probably eat anything with nuts in it. So – short and to the point – with nuts. Thank you.

Do you sleep with your closet doors open or closed? This one really does depend – on whether or not I’ve closed the closet door. I’m a lazy door closer for interior doors, and often just do not bother at all. A lifetime of having either small children or pets has pretty much taught me that there’s no such thing as privacy anyway, so what the heck.

Are you usually late, early, or right on time? In recent years, I am almost always early because I tend to get very anxious if I think I’m going to be late. Sometimes, however, the elements or whatever work against me but still I am rarely late. Maybe just on time, but not late.

What did you appreciate or what made you smile this past week?  Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination.  Presuming “this past week” includes today and yesterday and the day before, what I am most grateful for and appreciative of is the diminishing level of wildfire smoke in the air. Each of these three days has gotten better than the one before, and today I can actually clearly see the sky and the clouds and even the hills behind me. Oh what a relief it is.

I am also appreciative of the antics of the many little chipmunks that run around my yard – despite the fact that one came in the other day and I don’t know if it’s found it’s way out or not. So, in that vein, here is yesterday’s chipmunk photo.




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Philosophical Musings

This morning I think I could use a little lightheartedness, so I’m creating a post out of a post by Brian Lageose wherein he posted some philosophical questions for his readers to do with as they chose. I have chosen to turn them into a post of my own, to be answered or not as I wish.

1. Do you happily eat the licorice jellybeans, or do you hurl them aside in wretched disgust? Eating any flavor of jellybean feels pretty much like eating chewy sugar to me, so I don’t eat jellybeans. Of any flavor. But if I did, yes, I would eat the licorice flavors too. And probably wonder why on earth I did that afterwards.

2. If you had to choose a vegetable for the title of your autobiography, which one would it be? Vegetable? Why not fruit? Because if it was fruit, I would choose Prunes and Plums. Like most people, parts of my life have been like the result of eating prunes and other parts have been very sweet. Are there any vegetables that meet that criteria? Maybe Brussel Sprouts and Peas?

3. Whilst reading the last few pages of an engrossing novel where you still don’t know the answer to “the big question”, are you able to calmly do so, or do you have to fight to keep your eyes from flitting to the final paragraph prematurely? In my impatient youth, I’m sure I skipped to the end more than once. But as I’ve mellowed (that’s so much nicer than aged), I no longer skip to the end – although I do race a little more quickly through the words to get to the end.

4. Can you remember the name of the first book you read that didn’t have any illustrations? Ha! My memory does not go back that far. If you thought it did, you’d be quite the dreamer.

5. What literary character best represents the dreams that you are made of? Don’t know. Can’t answer that one. That could be another memory thing.

6. What was your favorite piece of clothing (or accessory) that you wore in high school? Did you steal said item? Probably my fortified white bobby sox and my white bucks. Does that age me, or what? No, I didn’t steal them.

7. Do you know where your last high school yearbook is right at this moment? No. I have no idea. Too many life changes, too many location changes, bits and pieces have disappeared.

8. Let’s assume that you have done something that you shouldn’t have. No one knows you have done it and no one ever will unless you say something. If you don’t confess, your innocent best friend is sentenced to a year in prison but then wins the lottery on the day of release from said prison and becomes a millionaire. (Friend never learns of your duplicity.) If you do confess, you get ten years in prison and no lottery win. Your choice? One of the people that commented on Brian’s post said she’d like to say she would confess, but reality is she probably would not. I have to say the same, and like she said, I am not proud of this.

9. Do you have anything in your home that actually belongs to a former employer? Not that I’m aware of. I have some boxes of paper clips and things from my husband’s office, but since he owned his business I don’t think that counts.

10. Did you ever have to finally decide? (You knew I would throw in a song reference at some point). And say yes to one and let the other one ride?
There’s so many changes and tears you must hide.
Did you ever have to finally decide?      Yes.

11. Name the first song that comes to mind where you know every single word of the lyrics. Row Row Row Your Boat? Or Happy Birthday? Yeah, I’m not a lyric rememberer.

12. Can you remember the name of everyone who has ever seen you naked as an adult? We’ll toss aside professional/medical experiences, as we’ve all had to throw our legs wide in clinical situations, but this one becomes harder to answer in the affirmative the more you think about it. Ummm, this one is really no one’s business.

13. Through some bit of circumstance, you suddenly find yourself on a nude beach. Which of the following would be your reaction: A) Run screaming in abject horror. B) Hang around a bit to see what’s what whilst remaining chastely covered. C) When in Rome… D) Wave to all of your friends because everybody knows your name.  I would avert my eyes and wander off as casually as possible until I was out of sight, then I would breathe a sigh of relief and move quiickly to my mode of transportaton to take me far away.  Human bodies are far more interesting when left to the imagination.

14. Given the magical chance to start your life over at a certain point, would you rather go back to your high-school graduation, knowing everything that you know now, or go back ten years, knowing only what you knew then?  I think I’d opt to go back too my high school graduation knowing everything I know now. Although then I would be a different person in a different place in life, and I’m not sure I’d want that. There are a couple of things I might like to do over though.

15. You discover that a life-changing sum of money has been mysteriously deposited in your checking account. Upon speaking with a banking representative, you learn that the source wishes to remain anonymous and you will have to reimburse the donor if the name is ever revealed. Do you keep the money?  Several years ago someone told me when I’m given a compliment I should just say “thank you”, because denying the compliment is rude. I think not keeping the money would fall into the same category, and far be it from me to want to take away the donor’s pleasure at endowing my bank account with a welcome infusion.

16. Would you rather watch admittedly crappy movies with your loved ones in a living room, where it is guaranteed that the miscreants will constantly interrupt the viewing, or peruse cinematic masterpieces by yourself with no interference?  Well, if I’m in my living room with my loved ones, we are probably all talking over the movie anyway, because that’s just the way it is, and the way it’s meant to be.

17. Name the movie title that best encapsulates a poor decision in your life. Remember what I said about being a rememberer of lyrics? Yeah, well the same thing applies to movie titles. Maybe Dunkirk?

18. Would you rather write a single book that is hailed as a masterpiece long after you are gone or multiple critically-panned bestsellers whilst you are still on this plane? Listen, everyone needs to survive, and if I wrote books I don’t know that I would really care what critics said, if people bought the book, read the book, and liked the book. Because a critic’s opinion is only the opinion of one person.

19. Do you secretly write poetry that you have never shared? No, can’t say that I have. I really am not a poet by any stretch of the imagination.

20. Do you regret things that you never dared? Not really. If I don’t dare do it, it’s probably because it would put my physical well being at risk.

21. Is there anyone who knows every single thing about you? Do you? No, and no. Does anybody? Although I have a better understanding of me now than I did when I was young.

To round this out, I want to share a little story that pretty much tells you the most exciting part of my life. I went out this morning to take a birdfeeder off its hook to fill it, when something made me look down at it, and what did I see? A little chipmunk face peering out of one of the ports. He jumped out, and I laughed.

Wishing you enough of everything, including laughs.

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