Coming from an Italian household, I grew up with Holiday dinners consisting of Lasagna, gnocchi, stuffed pasta and other Italian treats. My husband grew up in a French Canadian (Québecois) household where the staple holiday meals consisted of dishes based from meat and potatoes like Pâté Chinois, Ragout de boulettes and Tourtière. This year I decided to marry the two cultures and create my very own Italian style Pâté Chinois. Keeping the 3 layers of meat, vegetables and a starch, I’ve replaced the traditional ingredients with those of my Italian heritage. With help from Italpasta TOTAL pasta we can guarantee great taste plus all the benefits of high fibre!
400g of lean ground beef
400g of lean ground pork
400g of lean ground veal
4 medium sized bell peppers
1 can (796ml) of Italpasta whole peeled tomatoes
1 jar (540ml) of Italpasta Tomato Basil pasta sauce
1 cup of corn niblets
2 tbsp of Italpasta Extra Virgin Cold Pressed Olive Oil
6 cups of water
1 tbsp of salt
2 cups of Italpasta Total Elbows pasta
2 tbsp of spaghetti sauce seasoning
2 cups of grated mozzarella cheese
Peppers: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees (F). Cut the bell peppers in half and remove the stems and seeds. Place the peppers into an oven safe baking dish and drizzle with the 2 tbsp of Olive Oil. Bake in the oven for 30 – 40 minutes (or until peppers are tender).
Meat: In a large pan on medium heat, brown the ground beef, veal and pork. Once evenly browned, add the spaghetti sauce spice and mix well. Using a hand blender, blend the canned tomatoes until they have a smooth texture. Add the tomatoes to the meat mixture. Mix well, turn down the heat and let the meat mixture simmer for 20 minutes. Add the corn niblets and mix well.
Pasta: Bring 6 cups of water to a boil and add the tbsp of salt. Cook the pasta until al dente (about 7 minutes). Drain the pasta and mix in 1 cup of the prepared Tomato Basil pasta sauce. Set aside.
In a large oven safe baking dish, line the bottom of the dish with the meat mixture. Add the roasted peppers on top of the meat. Add the Total elbow pasta on top of the peppers. Top with remaining Tomato Basil pasta sauce and garnish with grated mozzarella cheese. Bake in the oven at 425 degrees (F) for 20 minutes (or until cheese is lightly golden).
This recipe has been brought to you by The Oreo Cat® and ItalPasta. Happy Holidays from our family to yours!
With 40% of the daily reccomended intake of fibre per 85g serving, Italpasta TOTAL pasta has the same great taste you expect from white pasta but with the benefits of high fibre!
*recipe for human consumption only
*This post has been sponsored by Italpasta
This past weekend Oreo had the opportunity to attend a cat festival here in Montreal! A great place for cat lovers of all kinds, Le Salon des artistochats is an annual event in Montreal. Located at the Centre Pierre Charbonneau, this event houses all sort of artisans from in and around the Montreal area. A great place to find the purrfect gift for any cat lover, it is a must see event!
The one and only Salon des Artistochats offers a unique chance to discover a lot of extremely talented local artists and crazy cat lovers. This event houses over 50 artisans selling hundreds of cat-themed goodies made in Quebec: jewelry, clothing, accessories, artwork, pet products and so much more. Oreo was glad to be able to meet and greet with other local feline celebrities and indulge in some cat themed activities. Complete with an appearance by the world famous Atchoum The Cat and his human who held a small conference to speak about Atchoum's condition, hypertrichosis, this weekend was one Oreo will always remember!
Felines in this video include:
Retardo, Emma la maine coon, Alaric, The Oreo Cat
Be sure to join us next year!
For more information please visit: www.artistochats.com
Pets don’t just make life better. They make it bigger. Together, we can do the same for them while helping to improve their lives, even as they age.
Many of us feel anxious as we think about our pets getting older. Age can bring many factors such as Arthritis and ill health. As our pets get older they become more susceptible to health issues and require more visits to the vet. There are many things we as owners can do to help our pets age gracefully.
Just because your cat is a senior, does not mean they are no longer interested in playing. In fact, playtime is even more important in older cats as it helps cardiovascular health. Keeping you senior cat active can help eliminate things like obesity and depression. Taking time daily to play with your pets, regardless of their age is one of the most important steps in keeping a happy and healthy pet. Health checkups should be done on a regular basis to ensure your senior cat has the best quality of life given their age. Feeding older pets the right foods for their age group is also another important part of keeping them healthy and fit. Keeping our older pets happy and healthy is also important for our younger pets! Ensuring they're playmates and role models are with them for as long as possible.
October is Pet Wellness Month. It is the time for us as owners to be reminded that preventative care is the easiest way to help our pets live longer and healthier lives. This month, Purina wants to celebrate the everyday moments and milestones pet owners have with their older pets and help empower them with information and the advanced nutrition they need to improve the lives of their pets.
* This post has been sponsored by Purina Canada
One of the things I dislike most about leaving home is not being around my cats. Whenever I have to be away for work, on family visits or other occasions that take me away from home, all I can think about are my feline family. When Pawbo contacted me to do a review, I was excited to try their product for these very reasons. Pawbo is an interactive pet camera that includes 720p HD live video, 130° wide-angle lens, and 4x digital zoom. These features help to capture and record your pets directly from your mobile device. Pawbo also includes a microphone feature that allows you to talk to your pets through the speakers included on the device. A handy treat dispenser allows you to treat your pets to tasty morcels with the touch of a button. Pawbo also includes a playground feature that uses various interactive toys as well as a laser feature.
The Pawbo device comes neatly packed in a stylish box that doubles as a stand for the device once plugged in. Activating the Pawbo is easy. Once you download and install the free Pawbo plus app from the app store, it will prompt you with steps to connect the Pawbo to your mobile device. You can connect up to 5 mobile devices to the Pawbo.
Using the Pawbo app is easy even if you are not tech savvy! Within seconds of installation, the fun begins!
Pawbo's integrated treat dispenser includes a rotating treat dish with 9 individual compartments for treats. This is obviously Oreo's favorite feature. It only took moments for him to try and eat the device after realizing that the Pawbo held treats. Both Oreo and Onyx reacted instantly to my voice through the device. They walked right up to it wondering where I was. Again, once I dispensed treats, the two of them sat directly in front of the Pawbo for the next half hour waiting for more!
I did try out the laser feature, but I was a little bit concerned at the fact that both Oreo and Onyx seemed more interested in looking directly at the laser than the spot it makes on the floor. As a result, I decided to avoid this feature. I had stationed my Pawbo low to the ground as I thought it cute to see Oreo and Onyx walk right up to the camera. If you are going to be using the laser feature often, I would suggest stationing the Pawbo high up and away from your pet's eye level. There were a few times where the talk feature as well as the treat dispenser did not work when prompted through the app. This may or may not have been due to a Network connection. All in all however, the features work very well. I really enjoy the fact that you can record video and take snapshots directly from the Pawbo. Once recorded, you can save video and photo directly to your camera roll to share via Social Media.
I also want to mention that having this device in the house while you are away is a great security feature. You can see what is going on in your home with the touch of a button. My husband and I really appreciate the fact that our home feels safer with the Pawbo.
To sum up my review, I give Pawbo 4.5 stars (leaving out a .5 for the laser which I am not crazy about). For anyone who works long hours away from their pets, this device is a must! It is a proven fact that pets help to alleviate stress. Being able to take time out of your work day to interact with your pets, even from a mobile device, can definitely help eliminate a certain amount of stress. The price point for the device is fair ($199) considering the superior quality of the design. All in all, I would definitely recommend the Pawbo to anyone who misses their pets when they are away!
Pawbo website: www.pawbo.com
Buy Pawbo on Amazon
This post has been sponsored by Pawbo
On August 25th, 2013 Oreo stepped into my life, or rather into my house! Brought through the door Inside of a cardboard box large enough to be his mansion, Oreo was no bigger than the palm of my hand. I have to admit that I was a little nervous as I has never seen a cat so small and disheveled. Along with Oreo came his sister, Patches. The two were complete opposites. Oreo was quiet and shy and Patches was feisty, vocal and very affectionate. The plan had been to bring the two for care at my local shelter. We have an amazing shelter in our City that does wonderful work and has a beautiful space for all the animals they care for. Once I laid eyes on the two of them however, I could not allow myself to bring them to the shelter, no matter how great a place it was. That's where the journey began.
We decided the best thing to do was to foster the two babies until we could find them a forever home. Neither I nor my husband had ever cared for kittens so young, so we had a lot to learn very fast. Even with the lack of immediate knowledge, it was easy to see that the kittens had a parasite. Their bellies were swollen and the amount of waste that came out of them was enough to boggle the mind. The cutest part of all this was feeding time. If you've ever fed a baby kitten with a bottle, you'll know what I mean! It's the cutest thing ever! At first there was no alarm in regards to the kids having a parasite. It's pretty common in stray kittens and is generally easily treatable. Luckily they had no other ailments and seemed otherwise healthy. Patches got over the parasite in no time. She was really tough for such a tiny thing and she steamrollered over everything in her path. At first, Oreo seemed to be doing alright but one morning he took a turn for the worse and shook us up more than we've ever been shook in our whole lives.
One morning when I got up to feed the kittens, Oreo was passed out. My heart sank like never before in my life. Listening carefully through his baby fluff, I could hear a little heartbeat. I knew that I had to do something then and there to help him. So I decided to use my own breath to help him start breathing again. After a few tries, Oreo snorted and then let out a tiny meow. He was breathing again! Once I got him breathing again I packed up the two babies and we headed to the vet. Thankfully, even though it was not yet opening hours, a nurse let us in and immediately began caring for Oreo. Patches and I waited the whole day as the technicians and doctors got Oreo back up on his feet again. Safely back home, we decided Oreo was no longer a foster kitten. He was our kitten and we were his humans. We spent the next 4 weeks caring for him around the clock while he faught the parasite that was ailing him.
During this time, Patches took it upon herself to groom Oreo and became quite the little mother figure. With all of us working together, Oreo got better and started becoming his wacky little self. After six weeks, Patches was adopted by a family friend who fell completely in love with her photo on Facebook. She went to a great home and is still living a happy, loving and healthy life! As for Oreo, you all know what came next!
Oreo has changed my life forever. From the moment he was brought through the door in his box mansion to this very moment today, he makes everyday a new adventure. Oreo is my fluffy son and my best friend. I want to thank him for filling my life with importance, happiness and love. Happy Birthday Oreo!
There are many celebratory days during the year to celebrate those we love. Mother's Day, Father's Day, Sibling's Day and others are on the list. For me, one of the most important celebratory days of the year is International Cat Day. My cats are my best friends. They are always there for me when I need them most and they provide me with the most unconditional love any living creature could offer. All of these things and more combined make it a purrfect reason to celebrate my cats on this special day of the year. All 365 days, our pets are doing something special for us. Whether it's that look they give you when you wake up in the morning helping you to face the day, the cute things that warm your heart and make you smile, the unexpected things that make you laugh, or the excitement they show when you walk in the door after a long day at work. Our pets are always working hard doing things for us and helping our daily mental state. They rise us up when we are down and comfort us like no other can.
For all of these reasons and more, it's important for me to thank my cats on National Cat Day. This day is all about them and everything they do for me all 365 days of the year.
Today is International Cat Day. Thank you to all of the cats for being your wonderfully purrfect little fluffy selves. You make each day of our lives just a little bit brighter and a little more filled with love.
Celebrate YOUR cat(s) today!
I will have to take a trip back to the vet today. This time not for Sunshine, but for Oreo. When I got up this morning he was limping and as I got closer I realized that his left back paw has a bloody claw. I don't know what he did but it must hurt real bad. I tried my best to clean it up a little bit by putting his paw in some lukewarm salt water. Oreo of course freaked out and gave my husband and I his two cents on the whole ordeal by giving us some nice gashes with his front claws. Of course, we don't mind... it builds character.
I am just concerned about the wound being infected. After cleaning it off Oreo sat scrunched up into a corner like a child who got a time-out. I feel so badly for him. I am pretty confident that it will be something that will heal easily. If he has to take anti-biotics I am not too concerned as it's super easy to get Oreo to take pills. Just put them in a spoon with a little olive oil and he eats it right up like a cat treat. Never a dull moment in this house! More updates on my little man once we see the vet! Our appointment is at 2:20pm ❤️
Sunshine and I went back to the vet yesterday for another follow up. She had some blood work done to check the status of the infection. The results show that although the infection is still present, it is getting better. We will continue her antibiotics for another two weeks. Sunshine will also have daily fluids for the next 4 weeks to help completely clear things out. What remains is to try and get her to eat her Kidney Formula once again, however, it has not proved itself to be easy. I have tried every brand and she just won't eat it. Her doctor did say that he is more concerned with having her actually eat at this point, so to keep allowing her what she wants. I bought another bag of Kidney Formula yesterday, one that she has not had in over a year, I will give it a try. Sometimes going back to the old brand after some time works. We will see what the verdict is. I know that she will eventually get tired of the supermarket brand as well and I will have to find something else regardless. Thankfully there is one food that is always fool proof for her. She loves the "Chef's Dinner" Friskies wet food. I know it's not the best choice given her condition, but we'd rather she eats than not eat. I guess if I was in my 90's I might be picky too!
We will be going back for more tests at the end of August to see where we stand at that point. All in all things are better and I am so glad. She is in much better spirits and she is still playing and being her cute self. Last evening she even came and hoped in bed with me and asked for food. That's a great sign. Luckily she does not seem bothered at all by the fluids so continuing should not be a problem. The only thing that worries me in that regard is the fact that she vomits afterwards every time. I spoke to the vet about it and mentioned that if you offer her food right after she vomits, she will eat it. Seeing that she eats again right after, her doctor is not to heavily concerned about that for now. As long as she keeps eating she will be able to keep her strength up to fight off the rest of the infection.
Update on vet costs: Total to date: $662.66
Donations received to date: $2120.21
Funds remaining: $1457.55
Donation Link: www.paypal.me/TModugno
Thank you so much for all your continued support. More updates to follow.
Tina & the cats
I am so glad to say that this past week Sunshine has been doing much better! The antibiotics really seem to be helping and she has slowly been getting back to her old self. She's been playing every evening before dinner and she has been more active and chatty. We're still experiencing a few problems as far as food digestion goes. Sunshine is still throwing up daily, but I have a feeling it may just be a result of the medication. Regardless of the vomiting, she has been eating more normally. The vomiting does not seem to bother her either because if offered food once again right after, she will eat. I am so happy and so relieved that she seems to have pulled through for the time being. I will be going back to the vet for another checkup at the end of next week. Sunshine will have some tests done once again to see if the infection has completely cleared. Since being ill, we've been allowing her to eat whatever she desires, but I imagine she will need to return to her Kidney formula in order to keep her condition stable. We will cross that bridge when we come to it. I am more concerned about her putting on a few more pounds at the moment, so I will continue to allow her to eat what she wants until her next veterinary appointment. Hopefully things will look better and we will move forward with the next steps.
Sunshine and I visited the vet once again today for a quick follow up. She did gain a little bit of weight back in the past few days which is great news. She is still on daily fluids as well as her antibiotic. She has still be very finicky as far as eating goes which makes things a little difficult. She will not touch her kidney formula food so we've been feeding her a supermarket brand that she likes. It's not the best thing, but it's more important that she eats at this point. So we've given her whatever she fancies in the last few days. She will have to go back for more testing in 2 - 3 weeks time.
Although she is still slower than her usual self, she did play a little yesterday evening which is also a great news. Normally she loves to play, so when she turns her nose up at a good round of slapping the toy on the string we know there is something really wrong. You can tell that she is still very tired and very weak, but she did do her best to slap the toy around a few times regardless. She seems happy and she does not seem to be in any pain. She just seems more tired than anything else. Rest is always best when you are ill however, so hopefully the extra sleep will help her to fight the infection. Oreo continues to watch over her and stays close by. He watches while we give Sunshine her fluids and he gets upset when I give her the antibiotic pill. He does not like to see her being handled and will actually sit at my feet and cry while nibbling at my ankles. I've also caught him stealing kisses. Normally Sunshine would not be adamant, but she's allowed Oreo a few smooches and nose boops without hesitation. He is such a good little brother. We will take it one day at a time until her next appointment and see where we stand at that point.
Tina Modugno is a children’s illustrator from Canada. Tina loves all animals, kids books and cartoons! She currently resides in Quebec with her husband and four cats!