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Happy National Dog Day

Hope Everyone Had A Really Cool National Dog Day With Love From Bella! #nationaldogday #dogs #family




Passover Chocolate Gifts Of Love

Passover is a wonderful Jewish holiday steeped in the tradition of story telling, love and family. It is a reminder of a heritage who's roots are both bitter and sweet and the Passover Seder is the gathering of friends and family to remember the past and honor their ancestors, enjoy the today and those they hold dear and look to the future generations to grow and learn with honor and pride.
All of the foods eaten at Passover tell the story of the bitterness of slavery and the sweetness of freedom. There are songs and prayers. Boo's and Cheers. And there is chocolate. I remember the chocolate always symbolic of the sweetness of the holiday. Nowhere in the movie the Ten Commandments does Moses pass out chocolate bars when he proudly presents the commandments and leads every one to freedom. And yet the chocolate tradition of Passover is a wonderful gift to bring to a seder.
Since Chocolate itself is somewhat of a religion in my family - we really love it! - it seems like the perfect gift for this Jewish religious celebration.

 Chocolate Passover Gifts

My Mom made the Seder plate in the center of the photo above by hand. She handcrafted the ceramics and painted and decorated this treasure just for me. I will always love it and I know she would definitely approve of it being surrounded by gifts of chocolate, family and love!
Some Jewish families celebrate in a very strict and orthodox fashion, staying true to the rituals their ancestors thousands of years ago also followed, some families find a more conservative approach that honors the ancient rituals and yet have a more modern approach. Some will eat only Kosher for Passover foods and some will not. The honor comes from the remembrance and the time to remember traditions and pride in their heritage.

Bringing chocolate gifts to a seder is bestowing your wish of a sweet life on family and friends - what could be a greater wish than that for those you love!
My Mom loved holidays and especially Passover. She invited the family over and really made every Passover holiday a special time of sharing. It wasn't a very religious celebration but did incorporate a bit of religion and prayer in English and Hebrew, a lot of tradition, tons of home cooked food and a lot of laughter and fun.
 Chocolate Passover Gifts

These Easy Favorites Are Awesome Too

 Passover Chocolates

 Jewish Cookies and Chocolate Treats



Cats Cats Cats

Our Cats Have Trained Us Well!

My cats run the house. Really they are the bosses. They have us very well trained. We have learned to pet on demand, feed and give them plenty of water in the particular bowls that they love. We change their litter daily so as not to offend them.
They let us love them and nurture them. When they decide! They also let us hang out with them on the couch while we watch TV and most nights they will even share the blankets and pillows on our bed with us.
I'm really lucky because besides my own cats I get to share family love with my grandkitties too. Smokey, Rocky and Bruno (and Bella my grandpuppy!) are the most loving cats you could ever meet and all rescues meaning of course, they rescued us by finding us and adopting us. Not only are they so loving with all of the family, cuddle and playmates with my granddaughters but they are amazing and loving with each other as well. 
Come on in and meet my family cat crew. Introducing (from left to right) Mimi, Charli and Sammy. Our three babies.
Three cats. Twelve different personalities depending on the kitty and time of day! They definitely run the household and we are so lucky they all adopted us.

Meet The Crew

 Pets Are Family

Sammy Boy

 Cats Are My Loves

Sammy is our oldest cat. Our family has always had dogs and cats and just before Sammy came along unfortunately we had after 17 years of love just lost our dog Lucky who we loved so much and a year before our cat Cappy who was with us for almost 20 years. We weren't really planning on adding to our family but....
A friend of mine had a visiting cat who delivered a beautiful litter of kittens in his backyard. My daughter adopted a beautiful little gray and white kitten from the litter who's name is Smokey. What a sweetie. He had gotten all the kittens adopted except one. And kept calling me to let me know about the one little kitten who no one adopted..... Since all the other kittens were gray or tabby colored I jokingly said OK if it's a black and white kitten I will take him. Guess what, the next day Sammy was delivered to my doorstep.
He took one look at us and adopted us on the spot!

Mimi Cat


 Cats Cats Cats

Sweet Mimi was only 8 weeks old when she adopted us. My youngest daughter and I just happened to stop into a PetSmart to get some cat toys for Sammy when they were hosting a rescue shelter for cats. Adorable sweet little kittens everywhere! Well of course we had to stop and look!
And there was Mimi. She looked into my eyes so little and so wise. Then I asked the nice Rescue lady the fateful question. You know the one. Can I hold her for just a minute? She almost leaped into my arms and cuddled against my neck and said, I'm telling you I heard her say, Hi Mommy I Love You. Then my daughter who by the way was in her 20's reverted into the adorable kitty loving child of her self and said, ooooh meee can I hold her too? Mimi happily went into my daughters arms, snuggled in, looked deep in her eyes then reached up and with her tiny little kitty paws and played with my daughters little hair curls.
It was love at first sight for all of us!! Hello Mimi, thank you for adopting us too!

Charli My Brave Little Kitty

 My Charli Cat

Charli is our baby cat. She is so brave and so loving and rounds our family out just perfectly. Charli adopted us under the bravest of circumstances. Our town had been going through a heat wave. A terrible heat wave of over 100 degrees every day. No break night or day with temperatures still in the 90's at night. No rain. No cool winds. Harsh, rough heat.
My husband is the Fire Chief at our fire station and one of these terribly hot days he called me outside the firehouse and said come here, you have to see this. There under the loading dock of a local business next door to our fire house was a tiny, dirty little cat who would come out when she saw us and yell "MEOW!!". We went over there and she would shyly scoot just beyond our reach. We brought here some water and came back later on to give her some more. That night when she saw us she came out again and yelled "MEOW" in her tiny tiny little kitten voice. Again she scooted just beyond our reach when I went over. But I stayed and talked to her and watched her drink some water. Of course I thought about her all night.
The next day as soon as I got to the back of the fire house little Charli popped out and said "MEOW!" I thought to myself if she comes out again I really have to pick her up and rescue her poor little thing. Sure enough as soon as I went over and started talking to her she came out, wrapped herself up on my sneaker, looked up and said "MEOW!!" She let me pick her up. I called my oldest daughter and said come on down to the fire station, bring some kitty wash and a towel, it's cat adventure time! Of course the idea was to bring her to the Vet on Monday and then they could find a great home for her since I already had two cats. Yeah, right!
We brought the teeny tiny dirty filthy little kitten into the station and gave her a bath in the sink, oh so cute! She let us and seemed to love every minute of it. By the time we wrapped her up in the towel she wasn't saying MEOW anymore she was purring and cuddling and couldn't wait to come home to her new family. Thank you Charli for adopting us!!