I woke up this morning to a dead titmouse (that’s a type of bird by the way, not a mouse covered in breasts). The guilty person i.e. a certain 20 toed furred beast with sand for brains and a propensity for killing birds, was nowhere to be found. I put my robe on and scooped up the poor, soft winged soul and walked into the woods to lay him to rest in a more appropriate place than my blue carpet. Back in the kitchen I spotted her, perched like a sphinx, her tail slithering languidly across the floor, her expression the embodiment of satisfaction. I had a profound desire to pour a cup of cold water over her head while ranting about what a murderous, hideous creature she was, but how could I? She was just following her instinct, and presenting me with the prize to show her love. The trouble is, she shows me that “love” on an almost daily basis. Sure, I could leave her inside and bang my head against a wall amidst the continuous chorus of deprived cat sounds i.e. door scratching, mewing, and the occasional guttural outburst along the lines of a heavy rock plunking into water. This I fear, however, would only bring out mania of a different kind i.e. I’ll dress the cat up in a bird costume and shut her in a room with her brother Frodo. So instead, I let the cat outside, raided the empty fridge and decided that I wanted something other than coconut yogurt or wilted collard greens for breakfast.
Solution? Lemon poppyseed muffins! These moist, crumbly morsels of lemony goodness will make you spontaneously sprout wings so you can fly to the mother of the fallen titmouse and apologize in person. Yes, they’re that good. I used a mixture of brown rice and coconut flours to lighten up the flavor of the sprouted wheat, but you could probably make these gluten free by subbing the wheat flour for more coconut and brown rice flour, just make sure to up the liquid amount because coconut flour absorbs liquid like a sponge!
Lemon Poppyseed Muffins
1 cup sprouted whole wheat flour
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup brown rice flour
2/3 cup coconut sugar or date sugar
2 tablespoons poppy seeds
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 + cup unsweetened soymilk, or preferred nut milk
1/2 cup melted refined coconut oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
Zest from 1/2 of a lemon
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 375. In separate mixing bowls, add dry ingredients and wet ingredients. Mix together, then pour the wet into the dry and stir until just mixed, adding a little extra soymilk if the mixture seems to dry (you want it to be loose enough so that it doesn’t stick to a spoon). Grease a muffin tin with oil or soy butter, and fill each well about 3/4 with batter. Bake for 25 minutes, or until lightly browned on top and around the edges of the muffins. Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then pop out of tin and serve hot with soy butter! Makes 12 muffins, or enough to feed a small herd of titmouse mourning unicorns.
So my parent’s have this cat named Daisy. She was born during the Industrial Revolution and has been known by many names including Fazer, Piss-wagon, Cro-magnon, and most recently, The Yowler. She’s hyper thyroid (translation: perpetually starving, but doesn’t like the new cat food…ever) and has feline dementia (translation: gets lost in open spaces & pees any damn place she wants to). She’s old and she’s earned it, I suppose, but the trouble is, whenever we have guests over, they wake up in the middle of the night nearly frightened to death upon hearing Daisy’s yowling. The noise she makes is so unearthly that you would swear it was coming from some ghost in the night, some extraterrestrial terror…certainly not from a five pound tabby who’s roaming the halls.
You turn the light on and wipe the sweat from your forehead, calming yourself down as you remember what they told you about the cat: “don’t be alarmed if you hear strange noises at night…it’s just the cat”. Feeling better, you switch the light out and began to drift off into dreamland upon a unicorn, when suddenly, that horrible noise “woooowyaaaaooowww” is right beside you! You jump out of bed, grasping a pillow between your arms that says “cats rule”, and look down with trepidation at the ball of fur next to your bed. It’s Daisy of course, but as it’s 3am, she’s taken on a whole new shape, and you begin to wonder if she’s really just a cat or a phantom demon from the underworld who’s come to get you. Needless to say, after disturbing nightmares involving a deranged “puss in boots” character who’s trying to kill you with a catnip toy shaped like a fish, you stumble down to the kitchen and find your enemy passed out like a kitten on top of the stove. But you’re not convinced of her innocence (not to mention alarmed by the fact that the cat is napping on the stovetop. My mom tells you that she just loves warm places and not to be scared of her. Besides, she adds, she was about to take Daisy to the vet. Sick? you ask. “No, no…we’re just going on vacation”.
Now before you think, “gosh, this poor ancient cat has to be subjected to a cage and torn from her house…what horrible people”, let me enlighten you. The place Daisy goes to is a cat exclusive veterinary hospital complete with white columns, a fish tank, and new age music. For the bargain price of $38 dollars per day, Daisy gets to reside in a “cat condo”. Yup, a floor to ceiling, multiple floored mecca with choice of views. “Does Daisy prefer a view of the road or a view of the woods?” a vet tech asks her. My mom considers the question and replies, “the woods, please”.
I told my husband about Daisy’s luxe accommodations, and after a brief silence, he realized that his upcoming golf trip to Vegas was going to be cheaper than Daisy’s stay at the cat condos. What can I say? The cat has style.
So I have this cat named Dragon…
Her brother is Frodo Baggins. Frodo (ring-bearer and savior of Middle Earth) is very busy from sunrise onwards, protecting the ring (hair elastic) from Sauron (our dog Toast), and trying to find his way to Mordor (dark closet under stairs) with his sweet, but slightly dumb companion Samwise Gamgee (Dragon). Dragon does her very best, but she has long hair. You have no idea how difficult it is to poop in a litter box, and neither do I, but after much observation I have come to learn that you cannot poop in a litter box with long hair. Frodo? No problem: short hair (plus, he’s the ring-bearer). But despite her best efforts (which is essentially no effort), Dragon cannot poop in the litter box. There are only two possible outcomes for Dragon: 1) Poops in litter box, exits box, and runs around the apartment as though possessed by demons of the underworld upon realizing that poop is still attached to her butt. This is followed by the infamous butt drag, because what is the best solution when a turd is attached to your butt? Run around the apartment and drag your butt across the floor, which not only leaves brown skid marks but will successfully flatten the poop onto your butt so that the only method of removal is a very unpleasant twenty minutes in the bathroom with scissors. Frodo (ring-bearer) will then scratch the outside of the bathroom door and mew for Dragon while she is tortured (shaved) by Orcs (me or my husband). 2) Dragon gets in litter box, turns around several times, and poops just outside of box. This is followed by an intense “sweeping” session, which is when Dragon uses one of her front paws to sweep litter in several directions while the poop lay undisturbed and uncovered. Frodo (ring-bearer), as you might have guessed, poops in litter box, covers entire turd with litter, and leaves box, ring in paw and ready to roll.
But back to Dragon…
Sometimes, when you leave the litter box, the world looks different. For Dragon, this is nearly always the case. Upon these occasions of confusion, she reverts to her alter-ego: “Mrs. Crab Legs”. Mrs. Crab Legs is a flighty woman who spooks at the slightest rustle of wind, the tiniest creak of the floor, and the most ordinary movements of the Orcs and ring-bearer. She might look at you with an expression of terror, as if she’s never seen you before this very moment, as if her time in the litter box erased her memory entirely. She begins to scuttle her way across the room, but as she’s never seen you before, she must remain focused, and can’t risk taking her eyes off of you (you’re an Orc after all). Her eyes bore into your soul, but her legs continue across the floor, crossing in front of each other like a ghost crab upon the sand. This is about the time when I like to have an unannounced foot spasm. Mrs. Crab Legs, flighty as she is, leaps into the air with a supernatural movement that seems to begin from her tail and end at her head, as though being pulled up by an invisible string (the Orcs always have a good laugh when this phenomenon occurs).