Sunday, May 6, 2012

HSVC: Be Kind to Animals Day

The Humane Society of Ventura County, located in Ojai CA,  hosted an event this weekend; Be Kind to Animals Day. Yet another effort on their part to educate and bring awareness to the local population about different types of animals, their needs, their personality types, and how we can better interact with them. However, this concept really does not apply to just animals we domesticate for our companionship and pleasure. We should all be mindful of what animals all over this world experience, what they are killed for, how they are used for testing, how we directly and indirectly impact their lives, and various other things that maybe we wouldn't normally think about. In other words, a good day to be kind to your fellow earthlings. Animals share this world with us and are deserving of our respect.

The event had everything from tree frogs and rabbits to snakes and skinks  accompanied by artwork made by kids from one of the local elementary schools. There were educators on hand to teach about the animals and kids got to touch and hold the animals while they learned. It was a lot of fun and I mostly enjoyed watching the kids learn about the reptiles as they carefully and cautiously considered whether or not they should touch the corn snake :) .

Nala and Bowman


Once again, I baked for the event as volunteers were needed to bring finger foods...and as usual  I reached out to my Bestie for ideas. She had a response for me within minutes and one of the first suggestions included the words "Peanut Butter and Jelly" and I had my first item.  As she has also been on a quest to find the best Chocolate Chip cookies, her other suggestion contained a link for some and I thought it would be a great time to try it out...and glad I did.


 I hadn't really given any considerable thought to the potential stickiness of the situation (jelly + handling animals = eww) but it actually turned out fine and the treats were so delicious, that even I frequented the snack table :( perhaps more than I should have. Oh Well!

These were super delicious and I highly recommend them. The challenges I had (with this being my first time making this recipe) came first with the dough, which was the bottom of the dessert, and mine shrunk during baking and no longer filled the complete bottom of the dish/pan. This was challenging when it came time to add the layer of peanut butter which clearly then extended over the edge of the dough foundation. The instructions called to cut off excess and have it be just edge to edge and not let it go up the sides. I say-leave the extra cause it will shrink as it bakes. 
Also, for the crumble, I added a full stick of butter rather than the suggested 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) as it needed more binding power (flour to butter ratio).


 I did one pan of strawberry and peanut butter and one pan of mixed berry and peanut butter. Both were amazing. For the recipe, go to The Brown Eyed Baker.

Now for the cookies! YEA! This truly is an awesome recipe and while some of the cookies look not so pretty, they taste AWESOME! Crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside. I personally like the appearance of these with the texture of the dough and lumpiness of the chips underneath. I use Ghiradelli chips which are much bigger than say Toll-House chips. I modified the recipe and went with milk chocolate chips and chopped walnuts.


 For the recipe, go to: Savory Sweet Life

The day was a success and the event which was scheduled from 11 - 3 was still busy with people up till the end. I was impressed that upon arrival there was such a long line for the spay/neuter clinic and more impressed how many people turned out to support the Be Kind to Animals event.  The kids were excited, they participated, and I think everyone learned something they didn't know before. Here are some additional pictures from the event. Be well, take care, and support your local animal shelters- especially the NO-Kill ones :)

Spay and Neuter clinic

About our visitors


Artwork from local elementary school kids

Snakes and Skinks artwork

FOTM & HSVC collaboration

Artwork from local elementary school kids

Educator Aimee French with Noodle, the corn snake