This should be a recipe box post as it is one of the infamous recipe cards but this is more than just a recipe post. This week has been a very hard week, more of a rollercoaster than any I have had in recent times. So on that note closing the week off with Ice Cream and other comfort foods seems the way to go.
Last sunday my partner got up in the early hours of the morning with Little Man and Miss Six and let me sleep in. It was short lived after he discovered blood in our bathroom, our lovely little (not so little really) black cat Felix had left bloody footprints in the bathroom before so at first I wasn’t too worried. But you know how you get that feeling that maybe just maybe there is more to it than just “blood in the bathroom and can’t find the cat”. So I got up and went to look for myself, it wasn’t just the tiny little spats that I had imagined it was smeared on the outside of the bath a little on the floor and after a bit more investigation I found it on the wall of the laundry as well. I still thought maybe he’s caught something and brought it inside, until I looked into the dirty laundry basket. Then suddenly it was very very important we find him.
I did the normal, walk around outside shaking the cat biscuits calling him several times before he slowly emerged from under our front deck. It was horrific and I’m not going to put details of his injuries but it was obvious immediately that he wasn’t going to survive and that he had been hit by a car. As we attempted to get him into a box to take him to the vet he escaped and ran back under the deck/house (one tough cat). Our house is an old rail cottage and well it doesn’t have a trap door to get under the house. My partner pulled off a panel around the bottom of the house to discover there wasn’t much of a gap around the outside, so he dug several holes around the house in attempts to get him out. We even tried calling the emergency line for our local SPCA but they just gave us the short quick if there isn’t a trap door we can’t help and that he has probably gone under there to die. Nice. By sunday night he still hadn’t emerged despite putting food by where he went in, he never turns down food. We had come to the conclusion that he probably had passed away and that we weren’t going to see him again. We cried, he was a huge part of our lives, our neighbourhood even. That night my partner went to work and I heard cat noises from outside, I went out to find 5 cats on our driveway, two huddled together and they were making this weird meowowow noise and then sort like little meow’s to each other like they were talking. They were on the side of the house where we thought he was as well.
Next morning comes and it is still hard, going into the laundry (his room) and not being greeted immediately was so weird (it still is) and as I was standing there missing him I happened to look up and out the window. There he is under the lasiandra in the grass,in the sun breathing. I screamed, ran outside and for a second had this glimmer of hope that he would survive. He saw me and gave a faint meow, my partner came out as well and we patted him but he was giving us this look like he was trying to tell us that he wasn’t ok at all, I knew it already I just didn’t want to know it. He passed away shortly after in the sun under the flowering lasiandra with both of us there. We wrapped him in the blanket he normally slept on and my partner buried him exactly where he had chosen to lie down. It was heart breaking. It was harder to have to tell all our neighbours that had come to know him so very well, they were all just as upset.
We made the decision at that point to keep moving forward, to be tough like he was, to be happy like he always was and to keep adventuring through life. My mum came up from the south island that day for a visit and we had a lovely afternoon and evening together. The next day we took Little Man to the park and he had his very first proper play, going down the slide (with dad and assisted by himself) and on the swings. He loved the other kids and the ducks. It was a really great day. The rest of the week went reasonably smoothly.
Then last night my little rat baby wasn’t looking too well. Lately he has been going crazy on his wheel and climbing. At his age I did wonder if it was good for him to be doing so much exercise, he is three and a half (pet rats only normally live a max of two years). I took him out of his cage and gave him cuddles, put him on my lap under the edge of my wool jersey and just kept him warm. He was showing his age and definitely not acting like his normal scaredy rat personality. Instead he was finding pats comforting, and was definitely enjoying the closeness. We gave him some peanut butter because well it seemed like he needed fattening up and needed something easy to eat. What seemed odd to me was how sudden him being sick was. Before bed I made up a nice warm comfy new house for him in his cage, moved his water bottle and food bowl (with more peanut butter and some sunflower seeds) to outside the door. Hoping that in the morning he would feel a bit better. I got up this morning at 4.45am for Little Man and as I was sitting in the lounge waiting for Little Man to go back to sleep, I could hear him in his house shuffling around.
I went back to bed and got up at around 9am to find he had passed away, poor little fella. He has had a very very good life though, he was the only boy of the litter my original two rats had and he has always been obsessed with running. I think in the end it may have been what killed him. I am glad to have had those last moments with him last night, people really over look how wonderful a pet rat can be. They have such unique and wonderful little personalities, each one is completely unique and in a lot of ways they are a lot like humans.
So as you can see it has been one hell of a week.
Ice Cream is needed.
Low Calorie Ice Cream:
2 tsp gelatine
1 1/4 c skim milk powder
1 litre skim milk
2 tsp vinegar
2 tsp vanilla
Combine gelatine, sugar and water in a saucepan, stir over a low heat until dissolved. Pour into a large bowl. Add powdered milk, whisk until smooth, gradually beat in milk. Pour mixture into two 28cm x 18cm tins or into two freezer trays. Freeze until almost set. Spoon Mixture into large bowl, add vinegar and vanilla. Beat until thick and creamy (can use electric mixer). Pour mixture back into freezer trays and freeze until set.
Section: Low Calorie Recipes-Family style. Card: 15