Serena J. Cavanaugh :: Blog

January 30, 2010

Finally Proof that All Dogs Go to Heaven!

Filed under: Cultural Rants — serena @ 9:09 pm


“Did the dinosaurs know God?”


My four year-old niece, Rachel, asked this perfectly legitimate question. By her simple logic, their size alone must have made them pretty darn close to the Man Upstairs. The bigger the better… the closer to God, of course.


But her mother, my little sister – so I have the right to totally judge her — quickly put a stop to that burgeoning philosophy. “Only people know God,” she said and just to make sure she forever ruined the poor child’s love of nature, she added, “And only people go to heaven.”




She said this right in front of my dog. Obviously, she missed the papal concession that all dogs go to heaven.


I’m not sure who was more damaged by this exchange – the dog, the four year-old, or me — but I think by the time I was finished with my errant little sister, she was.


Because animals – and definitely dogs – certainly know God and if you know God, not just of him like the human schmucks, then that’s a free ticket straight to paradise. Trust me: it makes sense and I’m about to prove it in a logical, coherent, even mathematical way that even a four year-old could understand.


The first axiom is that bigger is better. Now don’t start arguing yet. Four year-olds are ultra-grounded so they can only talk in terms of the concrete, hence Rachel’s focus on the physical size.


But we aren’t four, so we don’t have to focus on size.


Let’s dissect the meaning of the word “bigger.” When we say a person is being a “bigger” person, we mean they are being strong and doing what is expected of them. What animal does anything besides what is expected of them? Even when a dog is being naughty, as in barking at the cat on the fence, or digging in the garden, he’s doing exactly what God intended. And when he sacrifices those small pleasures for us, he’s being strong. Either way — he’s earning his way to Eden.


Dogs, I think, are still enjoying the Garden of Eden. Isn’t that what a dog is all about? In exchange for obedience, we feed them and take care of them, which is exactly the exchange God wanted with Adam and Eve. 


The other thing about “bigger people” is that they don’t sweat the small stuff. They keep their mind on the simple, not the complex and convoluted. When faced with confrontations, they choose the path less trodded upon, one that is higher, perhaps narrower, perhaps straighter… oh, that would be the road leading straight to the pearly gates.


I’m going to go on a slight but important tangent here to prove that faulty logic is also better and necessary. Faulty logic belongs to those that are simple minded and simple people are bigger people and bigger people are better people… and if you are still confused Rachel will explain.


So, back to my faulty but better logic…


It has been established that simple means better means higher means heaven etc.


And what can be simpler than a dog, stretched out on the sunny part of the carpet, or hopping through tall grass with a gait that freezes at the top of the jump’s arch, or snapping at gnats in the dusky evening, or enjoying that good scratch behind the ears?


Nothing…except maybe a four year-old asking whether or not dinosaurs know God, on account of their size and all.




January 21, 2010

Homemade Mayo

Filed under: Food & Recipes, Parenting — Tags: , , , , , — serena @ 10:28 pm



Why would anyone want to make their own mayonnaise? Blame it on the movie Julie and Julia, which led me to the memoir My Life in France, which, among other things, got me interested in mayonnaise. Interestingly enough, this everyday shelf item that we toss ungraciously in potato salads and smother on our sandwiches without a thought was once a fancy sauce.


January 6, 2010

Homemade Cereal

Filed under: Food & Recipes, Married to a Miser, women — Tags: , , , , , , , — serena @ 9:51 pm

 granola1color.jpg image by fanaticcook

In my quest to eliminate processed foods, the one thing I had difficulty letting go was cereal.

Why is cereal so appealing?

Perhaps it’s the simple prep. Open box, pour into bowl, add milk. Maybe it’s that crunchy sound in the quiet morning. Or it could be the way the milk coats the little pieces of toasted grains. Or all the various fruits you can add to it –   (more…)

December 3, 2009

Raising Teens

Filed under: Cultural Rants, Parenting — Tags: , , , , — serena @ 3:23 pm

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: teens are God’s way of helping mothers let them go. It’s not that they are bad, it’s just that they aren’t likeable. (more…)

November 22, 2009

Literary Flings & Affairs Episode 4

Filed under: Cultural Rants, Literature — Tags: , , , , — serena @ 6:55 pm

The Rebound/ Spin Off 

Andrew  Jones  of  Penn  St  and   Mike  Tisdale  and  Calvin  Brock  of  Illinois   contest   a  rebound  during  the  game.   picture  appears  courtesy  of  ap/photo/ Darrell   Hoemann  .....................

We read a book that sweeps us off our feet and into another world that we never want to leave. But it doesn’t leave us a choice. The End happens, just like that.


We feel empty, hollow, and worst of all needy. Then the Spin Off comes along, promising us everything we got from that special novel – we get to see Mr. Darcy again! Or the DeWinters! The idea alone gets our hearts all a-flutter. (more…)

November 12, 2009

Greener School Lunches

Mason Jars Replace Boxes, Bottles and Smelly Thermoses

So we’re all trying to live greener and healthier. Then there’s the school lunch. It offers a green-living, food-purist some serious issue.

Even before I endeavored to be green, I had a problem with the school lunch what with the difference between a 100% natural fruit drink, 100% juice and 100% fruit juice and natural flavor versus no artificial flavor. Then there was the question of high fructose corn syrup… and finally, landfills. (more…)

November 6, 2009

Banana Bread French Toast

Filed under: Food & Recipes, Married to a Miser — Tags: , , , , — serena @ 2:31 pm

Save a Buck, Conserve Resources and Eat Well!

So you all know I’m married to a miser, right?

Which means I have to make the most of EVERYTHING. Especially in the kitchen because my miser is extremely sensitive about how much we spend on groceries. I’m not sure why this is, but I suspect it has to do with the fact that groceries are my gig, as opposed to his. (more…)

November 5, 2009

The Perfect Dish for a Cold Autumn Day

Filed under: Food & Recipes — Tags: , , , , , , , — serena @ 10:04 am

Cannellini Beans

Today I decided to make cannellini beans.


“What?” you might ask. “Don’t you just buy those in a can?”


Well, you can do that, or you can buy them dried and spend a couple hours immersed in the fragrant aroma of simmering beans, garlic and herbs. Two hours of simmering is perfect for cold days like (more…)

October 28, 2009

Strange and Unusual: Cat Fight!

Filed under: Cultural Rants — Tags: , , , — serena @ 10:29 pm

catfight450.jpg cat fight image by zboytony

It wasn’t one of those things on my bucket list, but today I got in a cat fight with a complete stranger.


October 26, 2009

Decrepit Appliances

Filed under: Married to a Miser — Tags: , , , , — serena @ 8:36 pm

The 1st in a series



Last night I dreamed that I found an extra room in my house.  I immediately began planning how to use this bonus room and how to decorate it. Then, I opened the closet and, low and behold, a brand new refrigerator.  Beautiful, tall, massive drawer space, and unstained doors. This was too good to be true.

I opened the gleaming doors — every shelf was filled to busting with beer – and not just any beer, but Keystone Light. For those of you who aren’t married to misers, this is THE cheapest beer out there. (more…)

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