Mariya Yaremchuk – “Tick-Tock” (Ukraine)

All rights goes to the rightful owner/s to the song in this video.
Video Rating: 4 / 5

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How to Write a Blog vs How to Write a Book

After writing a blog for half a decade now, you’d think that the transition from blog to book would be effortless; and if not that, at least somewhat intuitive. You’d be wrong. It’s kind of like saying, hey, I walk my dog every day, I’m totally up for a triathlon.

Some of you have asked how it’s going or what it’s like. It’s not easy, but really, what good things in life are? I’m enjoying the process immensely. I’m Ralph Macchio currently getting edited by my very own Pat Morita. We are on our way! The first draft of (who knows how many versions of) All Dogs Go to Kevin is complete, and I’ve learned a lot along the way.

How to write a blog:

1. Get a WordPress account.

2. Write something.

3. Edit (optional)

4. Publish.


5. Repeat for 5 years or so.

How to write a book (Option 1):

1. Adopt a funny looking animal.

2. Join reddit.


How to write a book (Option 2):

1. Write a blog (optional but strongly recommended)

2. Write some stuff. Show it to an agent.

3. Trash what you wrote in Step 2. Repeat step 2 and 3, eight times.

4. Take a break and wallow in despair at your crummy writing skills.

5. Write some better stuff. Now you have a proposal. Agent shows it to a publisher.

6. Don’t forget to blog about steps 1-5

7. Publisher gives you a contract longer than your actual proposal, plus a deadline for an actual book consisting of a whole lot more words than you’ve ever strung together in your life.

8. Write some stuff. Show it to no one.

9. Write some more stuff. Panic a little. Read, a lot.

10. Attempt to edit, get paralyzed with inability to see beyond current sentence. Decide entire thing is a steaming pile of garbage but now it’s too late to turn back and all you have is a deadline and some roadkill.

11. Hand manuscript to editor with the same apologetic smile you use when you give a dirty diaper to the flight attendant.

12. Wait, breathlessly. Blog a little. Wallow some more in the certitude you are no Maya Angelou, no Stephen King, no Harper Lee.

13. Pick up 50 Shades of Grey and Snooki’s latest book, then feel better about Number 12. Maybe it’s doable after all.


14. Open up envelope with your first draft manuscript, neatly evaluated by an editor kind enough to use a pencil and not a big red crayon for the comments. You’re the before scene in an 80′s teen flick. All you need is some tough love and a montage to get into shape!

15. ??? That’s as far as I made it as of today. I’ve got one year to fill in the rest and then we can all pretend it was an effortless endeavor.


Check back in a month for coffee rings, notes written in my own blood and perhaps some tooth marks from a neglected dog.

All that being said, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t deliriously happy. I love every moment of the process.


Pawcurious: With Pet Lifestyle Expert and Veterinarian Dr. V.

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18 Weeks of Essley

Back in March, I told you guys about a little project I’ve been doing, where I take a picture of Essley once a week, every week for the first year.  Babies change so drastically so quickly, and it’s an easy way to document the subtle transformations that we’d otherwise miss. 

Essley turned 18 weeks old this past weekend.  Below, I’ve added the above photos to an image of the entire first 18 weeks together (I posted the initial 12 in March).  When I look back at the first few weeks – which in the grand scheme of things, was not that long ago – I can’t believe she’s even the same person.  Seeing these pictures triggers so many memories.  Each one makes me think of a special period of this brief timeline – the day when she first began to keep her eyes open for several hours at time, the week she grew out of newborn diapers, the time when she began to hold objects on her own, the moment she first rolled over. 

She’s my kid, so of course this is amazing to me. But even if you’re not a baby person at all, you have to admit it’s kind of cool to see how much tiny humans transform in such a brief period of time, right?!  I also think it will be fun for her to get to see these images together like this when she gets older.  Thanks for letting me share with you guys as well.  I love her so much.

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Dog Befriends Disabled Kitten

Ralphee the kitten and Max the cattle dog are an odd couple who seem besotted with each other’s company after they were introduced following Ralphee’s rescue from a barn at a horse stable….
Video Rating: 4 / 5

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The Pet Food Test Campaign

If you are interested in all of the pet food recalls that have happened over the years, then there is a chance for you to help!  Consumers are funding a campaign to test pet food.  The goal is to raise $ 10,000, but more money would mean more options for testing pet food.

You can learn more and make contributions here!

PetsitUSA Blog

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Celebrities to Help Adoptable Dogs at Rescue the Runway

Fans of Fidos and famous faces are invited to step out for an evening of style and substance as adoptable Spots and their celebrity escorts strut on the catwalk during the second annual Rescue the…

[[ This is a summary only. Click the title for the full post, photos, videos, giveaways, and more! ]]

DogTipper: Tips for Dog Lovers

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3 Amazing (Completely Different) Smoothie Recipes

3 Amazing (Completely Different) Smoothie Recipes // Bubby and Bean

For the last couple of months, I have been consuming smoothies like there’s no tomorrow.  I’ve been eating healthier in general, and being much more mindful of finding ways to enjoy whole, nutritious meals everyday.  But it is the smoothie that is the reigning queen of my healthy food regimen.  Robbie calls them ‘liquid salads,’ which, to a degree, is a somewhat accurate description.  But smoothies can be so much more than just the standard ‘one part greens, one part fruit, one part liquid’ cocktail.  I’ve been experimenting with all sorts of ingredient combinations, and have discovered ways to make all types of smoothies, from refreshing to more savory to dessert-inspired.  The three recipes I’m sharing today – each of which is a completely different style and flavor than the next – are my favorites so far.  

3 Amazing (Completely Different) Smoothie Recipes // Bubby and Bean
3 Amazing (Healthy + Delicious) Smoothie Recipes // Bubby and Bean

A few things before you make the best smoothies of your life:

1. If one of these recipes sounds especially good to you and you want to make it right-this-very-second but don’t have all of the ingredients, just improvise.  That’s how I ended up coming up with each of these – by throwing together things I already had.

2. I use a Nutribullet, but any type of blender with a powerful enough motor to blend greens will work.  No fancy machine is required to make these happen. 

3. You’ll notice that quantities of most of the ingredients aren’t exact.  Since fruit can be sweeter or more tart depending on its ripeness, etc., I suggest playing around and tasting as you go. 

4. Each of these will yield two 6-8 ounce smoothies, or a big ol’ 12-16 ouncer if you’re in the mood for more.

5. Because different blenders work differently, please follow the manufacturer’s instructions in terms of how to ‘layer’ your ingredients.  For the Nutribullet, where you turn the cup over to blend, I add greens first, then fruit, then seeds, then liquid.  In a regular old blender, I add frozen ingredients first, then fresh ingredients, the liquid, then seeds.  As for how long to blend, I recommend 30 second to several minutes, depending on the consistency you’re going for.  My rule of thumb is to taste as you go.

And now, the recipes.

3 Amazing (Healthy + Delicious) Smoothie Recipes // Bubby and Bean
  • 1-2 handfuls of organic kale
  • 2 handfuls of organic spinach
  • 1/4 cup of frozen organic pineapple
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of frozen organic mangoes
  • A few chunks of avocado
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons of organic Chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup of coconut water (or plain water)

This smoothie is slightly sweet, but focuses more on greens than fruit. Depending on how much pineapple you add (less pineapple = less sweet), it’s also somewhat savory and makes for a good meal.  Instead of blending until liquified, I only blend for 30-60 seconds in order to keep it the consistency of a frozen slushie or soft sorbet.  The avocado makes this one creamy, so feel free to add more if you’re in the mood for an especially velvety treat. I finish by topping with organic granola (my favorites are Pumpkin Flax and Coconut Chia by Nature’s Valley, although homemade is best!), and I eat it with a spoon.

3 Amazing (Healthy + Delicious) Smoothie Recipes // Bubby and Bean
  • 1 handful of organic kale
  • 1 handful of organic spinach
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of frozen organic blueberries
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of frozen organic strawberries
  • 1/4 cup of frozen organic pineapple
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of frozen organic mangoes
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of plain Greek yogurt
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons of organic Chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup of coconut water (or plain water)
  • Pure maple syrup to taste

I call this one the ‘Kitchen Sink’ because the first time I made it, I blended pretty much every ingredient I had on hand that could possibly go into a smoothie and still taste good.  And it worked. This is a sweet, refreshing treat that’s packed with protein.  If you’re vegan, just omit the Greek yogurt.  I like to add a little pure maple syrup to cut down on the tartness of the fruits.  Just blend everything together for a couple of minutes until liquified. 

3 Amazing (Healthy + Delicious) Smoothie Recipes // Bubby and Bean
  • 1 small handful of organic spinach
  • 2 organic bananas, sliced and frozen
  • 2-3 tablespoons of almond butter
  • 1/2 cup of plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup of almond milk
  • Raw honey to taste
  • Sprinkle of cinnamon to taste

If you’re craving a milkshake but want a healthier option, this smoothie will do the trick and then some. I make this one for dessert (and sometimes for breakfast too).  If you don’t have almond butter, peanut butter works just fine.  And if you’re vegan, just replace the yogurt with more banana, and use pure maple syrup in place of the honey. Robbie loves this one after he gets back from a long run.  It’s filling and satisfies your sweet tooth without being overly sugary.  Sometimes, if I’m feeling a little crazy, I like to add a tiny splash of pure vanilla extract to this one (watch out!).  It’s also good with a few pieces of frozen mango thrown in, if you happen to have some on hand. I usually blend this one for a couple of minutes, until the consistency is similar to a milkshake.

If you make any of these, let me know what you think!  And if you have any favorites of your own, please share them in the comments.  Thanks to my recent smoothie obsession, I am down with trying out pretty much any combination of ingredients.

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A Feast For Crows

I am a horrible horticulturist. Dogs I got. Cats I can do. Plants? Fuggitaboutit.

Nonetheless, hope springs eternal, and every year an unfortunate crop of plants are sent to their doom as they peer out in horror from the back of my car on their way to purgatory from the relative safety of the nursery.

This year, I decided I would bring the kids into the fold and have them start a few seedlings. Maybe they have better juju than I, I reasoned. Perhaps they inherited their father’s talent for keeping plants alive instead of my less impressive genetic spread.

And they threw themselves into it the way only kids can, with gusto and passion. They planted the seeds as directed. They watered them religiously.

And then this morning, just as the first couple of eager sprouts were optimistically poking their tiny little sprout heads out of the soil, disaster.

Brody found the crime scene first.



I’m so sorry ma’am, the killer was in and out before there was anything we could do. What’s that? No, there were no survivors.


You may want to avert your eyes. It’s pretty bad out on the grass. Yes, they got the squash seedlings too. The whole crew, just like that.



Ma’am, I can say with certainty this was not the work of rabbits or coyotes. These were lifted right off the window ledge by a crow. I tried to tell you this morning when you were making coffee, remember?

Please accept my condolences. Oh, wait, you’re that vet, right? What were you doing with plants in the first place? Haven’t you learned by now? *sigh*

Pawcurious: With Pet Lifestyle Expert and Veterinarian Dr. V.

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Nice Tick photos

Some cool Tick images:

Tick in Rubbing Alcohol

Image by Thirteen Of Clubs
Found a tick on Oscar, got it before it was all swollen and rolly poly. Ticks are amazing but disgusting disgusting creatures.

_Deer Tick Live Concert @ Botanique Bruxelles-6067

Image by Kmeron
Photo by @Kmeron

You can have a look at our friend "le-hibOO" to see 35mn of showcase shot in Paris 2 days earlier, totally worth spending this time in here trust me :)

See also the 1st time i saw and discovered them a year ago in the exact same venue :)

To see all the updates, have a look on FB

And all my Concert Pictures can be seen on : musicfromthepit

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