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15 Minute Soup

by Meghann on January 3, 2012

You know you’re in Florida when… the local coffee shop continues to run the AC when it’s 40 degrees outside. Brrr… Floridians LOVE their AC.

I was actually a little confused when I kept hearing the AC kick on. The coffee shop is located in an old-converted house that is very drafty and not very well insulated. With the AC off it would be chilly on it’s own, but with it on, it was freezing. I had a couple of refills of hot water and stayed bundled up in my sweater and jacket while I worked during the morning.

When lunchtime rolled around I was really craving a bowl of hot soup to help warm me up. I debated staying at the coffee shop and ordering one there, but the idea for a quick and easy soup with items I already had on hand back home changed my mind.

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My mind was set on a sweet potato soup, but didn’t want to take 45 minutes to make it. So I improvised.

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To help speed up the process I peeled and cubed a large sweet potato, then I microwaved it for 5 minutes.

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After 5 minutes the cubes were soft and easy to poke with a fork. This meant there was no need to wait for them to boil on the stove and shaved an easy 30 minutes from the soup’s total cook time. Genius.

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While the sweet potatoes had a quick zap in the microwave, I started sauteing some onion, mushrooms, and fresh garlic in the pot.

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And seasoned them with oregano, chili powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper.

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When the sweet potatoes were done, I added them to the pot.

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Then one can of black beans (drained and washed) and a can of vegetable broth (refilled with water and added again for a full 4 cups of liquid).

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I let everything come to a low boil, then removed the soup from the heat and began to blend.

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I also added some kale at the end because I only had a little of the kale left and this seemed to be the perfect fit.

The whole process took just about 15 minutes from start to finish. It was a speedy homemade sweet potato soup black bean soup that was quick, delicious, and easy to prep.

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I garnished my serving with plain greek yogurt and a quarter of an avocado.

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With a piece of toast on the side (to soak up all the good stuff at the end)

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The soup was a little thin for my taste (next time I would add less liquid), but I really like how quick and easy it was to make. Softening the sweet potato before hand in the microwave saved a lot of time, as did using canned black beans. I left the remainder of the soup on the stove on a medium-low to let to flavors intensify a little more before I package the rest up as left overs. :)

Do you have any quick-and-easy soup tricks for cold days?

I just got some good news from the vet! Maddie is done with her teeth cleaning and is awake and doing fine. They didn’t have to pull any teeth and her chompers are as pearly white as ever. My sister recommended some doggie toothbrushes that she uses on her dogs to keep up with their teeth, so I’m thinking about investing in a couple for Maddie with the hope we can avoid this as much as possible in the future.

He also believes that Maddie licking at her feet may be a seasonal allergy since she only started doing it over the last couple of months. He’s recommending some medicine to relieve the itchiness and prevent any infections, but this scares the crap out of me after what I went through with Abbie couple of years back.

Abbie had similar itchy skin problems (only she would pull all the fur off of her right butt cheek in her itchy fits) and was prescribed a similar medication to ease the itchiness. She ended up having an allergic reaction to the medicine and stopped breathing suddenly in the middle of the night before quietly passing away. It wasn’t until the vet was talking to me about the medicine he wanted to give Maddie that all of those old memories came flooding back and I actually started to tear up on the phone.

I’m going to talk to the vet when I pick Maddie up later this afternoon about my concerns with the medicine and see what happens from there. I don’t want Maddie to be in pain and feel the need to keep picking at her feet, but I’m not sure I can give her a similar medicine that may have taken the life of my first dog. :(

{ 53 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Silvia @ skinny jeans food January 3, 2012 at 2:47 pm

I am glad Maddie is doing fine! I always have similar concerns when one of my cats has to go under for teeth cleaning or other procedures. Try to minimize it as much as possible.

Can they do allergy tests for dogs?

I sometimes think vets are slightly irresponsible because they often give human meds to dogs or cats, just in lower dosage, but those can have significant side effects for animals.

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2 Shae January 3, 2012 at 5:32 pm

The fact that vets give animals human meds is not irresponsible- they only do this when there is considerable evidence (i.e. actual science) the drugs will be effective and safe for the pet.

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3 Silvia @ skinny jeans food January 4, 2012 at 6:05 pm

Effective and safe might be ok, but how much research is really put into studying side effects?

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4 Krissy @ Shiawase Life January 3, 2012 at 2:49 pm

Glad Maddie is okay!!!

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5 Kristy @ KristyRuns January 3, 2012 at 2:49 pm

You are a genius. I can’t believe putting that soup together was so fast. I am definitely not that skilled in the kitchen.

Glad everything went well with Maddie. Interested to hear what the dr. says about your previous experience with that med.

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6 Melanie January 3, 2012 at 3:01 pm

Glad she is doing well!! I remember reading about Abbie and can’t imagine how terrible that was for you! Definitely speak to the vet about your concerns and maybe investigate a homeopathic remedy too? Lots of natural cures out there even for our animals.

Saw this online and thought it might be helpful: http://www.jack-russell-terrier.co.uk/forum/read.php?9,26674

Good luck!

Melanie

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7 Lindsay H January 3, 2012 at 3:17 pm

My parents have a dog with seasonal allergies who also chews on his feet. When his allergies are bothering him, my mom washes his feet in warm water and baking soda when he comes in from the backyard. Maybe try that before any sort of medicine?

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8 Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife January 3, 2012 at 3:22 pm

I love a delicious soup–and sweet potatoes make ‘em so awesome. Looks good, girl!!

Hope everything goes okay with Maddie!!

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9 Katie @ Peace Love & Oats January 3, 2012 at 3:22 pm

Oh no, I’m so sorry to hear about your first dog! That must have been awful to go through! Definitely voice your concerns to the vet! and on a lighter note, I really need an immersion blender to make soups like that!

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10 Cait's Plate January 3, 2012 at 3:28 pm

Glad Maddie made it out okay! And I know I say this ALL the time but I can’t get over how creative you are with food! It never ceases to amaze me! I would absolutely NEVER have thought to do something like that! Love it :)

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11 Lindsay @ Running the Windy City January 3, 2012 at 3:54 pm

I totally understand how scared you must be! Ahh! Definitely talk to the vet and hear them out but make sure you’re comfortable with the decision! Good luck!

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12 Lisa (bakebikeblog) January 3, 2012 at 3:56 pm

I am so glad to hear that Maddie is doing well!

And that soup looks lovely!! POtatoes are the way that I normally thicken up soups!

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13 Kelly January 3, 2012 at 3:57 pm

My dog, too, has allergy problems, and my vet just recommended Benadryl. The same kind we use. He said it’s 1mg of pill per 1pound of dog. So, if you have a 15 pound dog, you give it 15mg of Benadryl. So far, so good with us – but the itching and feet licking have not gone away totally. It’s lessened, but not gone.

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14 Dori January 3, 2012 at 3:58 pm

Glad you are discussing this with the vet. I would be a wreck too, but I am sure the chances of the same allergy are extremely slim and Maddie will be fine! Curious to hear what the vet says. Also, don’t be afraid to get a second opinion.

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15 Lara January 3, 2012 at 3:58 pm

Meghann, my dog does the same thing- biting her feet and being itchy. Honestly, I don’t think it’s a big enough deal to risk it with the medicine. Unless she’s biting to the point of bleeding or causing sores, it just means she’s itchy. We have given our dog Benadryl but it doesn’t really help much so we just leave her be. You can go to the pet store and get a spray with Cortisone and/or something that tastes bad so she will stop biting her feet. Or even ask the vet if they can prescribe a stronger cream? Just be careful…

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16 Brita January 3, 2012 at 4:02 pm

I second Kelly! My parents’ dog takes Benadryl for his allergies, and has for years. It doesn’t totally take away the issue, but he definitely is more comfortable when he takes it. He also takes Pepcid AC for his tummy… basically, he has a lot of special needs :)
I’ve also used homeopathic remedies on my own dog with success! She had a growth that the doctor said I would have to surgically remove, and it ended up going away after medicating with oregano oil (recommended by Caitlin from HTP).
Good luck with Maddie!

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17 Cara @ I Don't Believe in Diets January 3, 2012 at 4:05 pm

My dogs also lick their feet when they have allergies to the point that it bleeds sometimes. But after switching their food they have gotten a LOT better (apparently a lot of dog food has some crazy crap in it, and you have to be pretty careful). With your past I would recommend trying to go a less medicinal way if you can at first just in case.

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18 Laurin January 3, 2012 at 4:11 pm

We adopted an English Bulldog with terrible allergies, he was missing clumps of hair on his back and he was on allergy shots for a long time. My mom ended up taking him from us and her vet recommended that she bathe him in oatmeal soap and follow up with baby lotion and Gold Bond powder on his skin. It worked like a charm, he came off the allergy meds and his hair grew back. Plus, he smelled fantastic!

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19 Danielle @ Long May You Run January 3, 2012 at 4:37 pm

My two Jacks lick their feet all.the.time. I think it has half to do with their neurosis (ah terriers) and the other part having to do with allergies/dirt/rocks/etc. After we get back from the dog park or a hike (or whenever they won’t leave their feet alone), we make them stand in a few inches of warm, Epsom salt water for 5-10 minutes. Seems to do the trick every time, and I’m willing to do just about anything to avoid drugs!

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20 Elizabeth January 3, 2012 at 4:38 pm

I have an older dog with seasonal allergies. The vet prescribed about every possible antihistamine for him, and he also takes an oral steroid when it REALLY gets bad. But one of the most important things is to get the allergen off the skin, so it can’t itch her. Which means wiping/bathing her paws every time she comes inside, and regular baths! I put baby wipes right by the back door as a reminder. Switching dog foods can also help, but if this is just a temporary / seasonal issue, you might not need to mess with her diet. Best of luck to Maddie!

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21 Irina G (Fit Flexitarian) January 3, 2012 at 4:48 pm

I love this soup! It sounds absolutely delicious. I might try to make it for myself, though I might actually do it in the slow cooker and let it stew overnight instead. I still count it as an easy soup, though, since all I have to do is throw in ingredients ;)

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22 Jessica @ Sushi and Sit-Ups January 3, 2012 at 4:57 pm

The soup looks delicious! I have an immersion blender that my fiance’s mom gave to me, but I have yet to use it. I need to bust it out!

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23 kimmy January 3, 2012 at 5:18 pm

My dog just passed away on Thursday (he was hit by a car while my husband was holding the lease). I say talk to the vet and do whatever you are comfortable with!

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24 Shana January 3, 2012 at 5:45 pm

If Abbie were a child you would be in jail for negligent homicide. Grow up you immature immature little girl.

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25 Cee January 3, 2012 at 6:56 pm

You should be ashamed of yourself for this comment.

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26 Katie January 3, 2012 at 8:33 pm

Wow. You’re really a special kind of asshole, aren’t you?

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27 Jesse January 3, 2012 at 8:43 pm

Why would she be?? because she gave her medicine that a vet prescribed? I really don’t understand this comment unless you are just trying to be cruel and ridiculous.

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28 Emily G. January 3, 2012 at 10:50 pm

If Abbie were a child, and Meghann gave her the medicine PRESCRIBED by a DOCTOR and filled by a pharmacist, how would she be in jail for negligent homicide? When the dog started itching, she took her to the vet and gave her the medicine as prescribed – that’s far from negligent in my book. That’s what any mother or fur-mommy would do! I think it would be the doc that would be tied up in a malpractice case or in jail (ie: Conrad Murray!).

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29 Shae January 3, 2012 at 11:02 pm

Nope. Did you even read what Meghann wrote about what happened? Vet prescribed meds, dog had an allergic reaction. Then Meghann gave the dog the SAME drug again (without consulting the vet). So…yeah. If you knew your kid was allergic to peanuts, would you try feeding him a PB&J just to see what happened? It is really sad what happened and quite honestly Meghann I’m surprise you wrote about it the first time, let alone brought it up yet again.

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30 Emily G. January 3, 2012 at 11:08 pm

I did read..she said Abbie had similar itching problems that Maddie has. Abbie had an allergic reaction which caused her to stop breathing. When the vet talked to her about giving the meds to Maddie she was concerned and said she would talk to the vet when she went to pick Maddie up.

Unless it was edited in the time you and I commented, or I’m not reading correctly – I don’t see your point.

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31 Shae January 3, 2012 at 11:15 pm

The original commenter you were replying to who said the nasty comment was talking about Abbie. Abbie had a known allergy, and was given that same medication again with a fatal result. I believe that is why “Shana” mentioned negligence-nothing to do with Maddie, really. That’s all.

32 Meghann January 3, 2012 at 11:16 pm

There was never any concrete evidence that the medicine was what led to the first reaction. Yes, it was my fault for not consulting the vet before giving Abbie the medicine again, but I did have other friends and family tell me that they didn’t believe that was what caused it. When you have those thoughts going through your head and you see your puppy suffering, you give them the medicine again just to see if will help them. I went against mother’s intuition that the medicine was bad for Abbie and paid the ultimate price for it. I never said I wasn’t at fault, but I have made peace with what happened. I shared the story because at the time I was still in grieving and angry for myself with what happened. It was therapeutic to get it out there.

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33 Shae January 3, 2012 at 11:22 pm

Thanks Meghann. That is a really nice response…I’m sorry for what happened. We are all guilty of such mistakes at some point, I’m sure, and there is nothing worse than seeing someone you love suffer. I guess I was just surprised you mentioning the story again because clearly some people get really riled up about topics relating to dogs/pets.

34 Mindy L @ clueless nut January 3, 2012 at 5:51 pm

Yum, the soup looks delicious! I LOVE SOUP. Thankful that the holidays are over so I can get back to my regular lunch and supper meals.

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35 Gina @ Running to the Kitchen January 3, 2012 at 5:54 pm

Hope you get something figured out for Maddie’s itching that makes you comfortable. I’d imagine that definitely stirs up some bad memories.
I’m taking my dog to the vet tomorrow actually for teeth cleaning too (and wart removal from her head! haha). She’s been under a few times b/c she tore her ACL when she was 1 and had to have surgery to fix that but it makes me nervous every time.

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36 Sarah K B January 3, 2012 at 6:00 pm

My dog also has allergies; she gets rashes on her feet and in her ears. You might want to try feeding her special allergen free food and treats (you can probably buy them from your vet) and stop giving her people food. That is what we do with my dog and it has really helped.

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37 Army Amy* January 3, 2012 at 6:19 pm

I’m glad Maddie’s visit went smoothly. I get freaked when I take my dog to the vet. He’s my baby, you know? Trust your insticts! Considering what you went through with Abbie, I wouldn’t use that same medicine again either.*

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38 Lish January 3, 2012 at 6:39 pm

I’ve never had to have my dog’s teeth cleaned and he’s almost 7. My vet just recommends brushing once a week with some chemical free doggy toothpaste she has for sale at the office. She told me she only used “going under” for teeth cleaning if the dog would have no part in manual brushing or if she found a dental problem. So far the weekly brushing has been good enough for my guy. Nice teeth and no stinky breath!

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39 Courtney January 3, 2012 at 6:51 pm

My mom uses a bone on her dog that is made specially for cleaning dog’s teeth. It’s green and as the dog chews it, the bone cleans their teeth and breath. Definitely a lot easier than brushing their teeth!

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40 Ann January 3, 2012 at 6:59 pm

I have been craving sweet potato, so I may have to try this. Thanks for sharing!

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41 Erin January 3, 2012 at 7:08 pm

The AC thing used to kill me growing up in Florida!! It would be swampy outside and freezing in my high school (or the mall, or the movies, or… everywhere). It was totally impossible to dress for that!! Ahhh, memories :)

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42 Shannon January 3, 2012 at 8:09 pm

I never think to make soup! You are always making some good soup, and I’m definitely jealous. Goal for 2012…more soup!

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43 Nikki T January 3, 2012 at 8:50 pm

Glad to hear that Maddie did well at the vet!
I have a suggestion to help with Maddie’s teeth staying cleaner longer…I give my lab, Bella, bully sticks which are all natural, dehydrated bull penis (sounds wonderful, hey?!) She loves them as a treat and they help to ‘floss’ her teeth and keep them pearly white!
I order them online, but since you live in the USA, you may have more access to them at a cheaper price than I do in Canada…there is often cross border issues with these types of products it would seem.
I order them from a website called bullysticks.ca, maybe you could find something similar if you wanted to try them for Maddie.
Good Luck!

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44 Christine @ BookishlyB January 3, 2012 at 9:32 pm

I’ve got to get an immersion blender!

Poor pup. I don’t blame you for a second, I’d be really hesitant too. Is her skin allergic to something? Maybe there’s some sort of wash or something you could use on them. Or doggy Benedryl.

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45 jana @ newly wife healthy life January 3, 2012 at 9:35 pm

I am sorry Maddie isn’t feeling well. I can totally understand your medication concerns and I would definitely voice my worries to the vet as well. My favorite fast soup is incredibly easy. Just boil a little chicken broth with some onion, celery, egg noodles, and a little flour to thicken it up. If I have it on hand, I throw in diced carrots, chopped broccoli or sliced mushrooms too. My mom makes it all the time when she needs a quick meal and it only takes about 10 to 15 minutes, start to finish.

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46 Ellen January 3, 2012 at 10:12 pm

Have you thought about changing her diet? My dog did the same thing, chewing his feet until they bled. He also was super anxious and had separation anxiety, among other behavioral problems. His allergies, dry skin, and behavior problems went away when I switched him to a raw, grain free diet. He basically just eats meat and it has worked WONDERS for him. It’s super easy too, and cheaper than fancy organic dog food. His teeth are cleaned by the bones so I don’t have to get his teeth cleaned (bonus: much better breath!). It really is like a miracle. I’d recommend it to all dog owners.

More info: http://www.rawlearning.com/rawfaq.html

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47 Ali January 3, 2012 at 10:39 pm

I made this soup tonight (okay, with my own few tweaks based on what I had on hand, as we all do) and it was terrific. Really! Thanks for dinner :)

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48 Meg at runridelove.com January 3, 2012 at 10:41 pm

I would be worried also if i were you, you just want to get all of the information! And not be misinformed. A few years ago my pup had kennel cough. But, since she did not response to the first round of antibiotics, they wanted to run more tests. In the end, they tried to tell me my happy healthy 5 year old dog had an enlarged heart, which was causing the coughing and she was going to die. To extend her life I was going to have to keep her quiet, put her on all sorts of meds….blah blah blah. I took her to my parents vet at home for a second opinion, and go figure.Kennel Cough. All they had to do was try a different antibiotic. It went away in days. I never went back to the vet to tried to tell me that Mae was dying. Since 3 years later, she is running all over the place, and is as active as anywhere!
So get all the information, and if you are even a little unsure, get another opinion!!!

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49 Cheryl January 3, 2012 at 10:57 pm

This seems like a good use for kale. I’m trying to get it into my meals. I keep buying it, meaning to make kale chips, or cooking it some how and not enjoying it. I will befriend it this year…I’m determined!

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50 Nicole January 3, 2012 at 11:19 pm

My dogs eat those Greenie bones from the vet. They are kind of pricey but they love them and they keep their teeth clean. :)

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51 Emily January 4, 2012 at 8:11 am

What kind of doggie toothbrushes does she recommend? I might need to try it!

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52 Rachel January 4, 2012 at 10:58 am

Dear Internet trolls,
Seriously?! In case you couldn’t tell, meghann is a real, live, breathing person who loves her dog to pieces. Another dose of benadryl isn’t reason to relate this to sending her to jail if this were a human baby. She obviously felt horrible for maddie and was trying to help her. And it isn’t like she comes from an idiot family, her mom is a nurse who has cared for me in the hospital several times. Chill out and quit being trolls.

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53 Allison January 4, 2012 at 6:21 pm

Loving soups and stews with the current cold weather… But sadly, I’ve only made one stew and have been relying on Mr. Campbell a little too much- should change that ASAP!

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