1,500 Miles

About 3 months ago I posted about Star's Rat Rescue and the massive rescue they did. Since then they have adopted out about 50 rats, but there are still tons of male & female rats in need of forever homes.

They recently did a rat train that traveled from South Dakota all the way up into Michigan and Canada! There were 13 rats on this current train. And we had one driver drive from Philadelphia to South Dakota. He also dropped off rats in Ohio. And my 3 girls traveled all the way from South Dakota to Philadelphia, PA! They traveled approx 1,500 miles to get here! There are still even more rat trains being organized as we speak. For more information click here.

I have known Brittney of Star's Rat Rescue for about 3 years now. She has worked with me as a moderator on The Rat Chatter Forums. So I was very excited I would finally get the chance to adopt from her rescue since South Dakota is pretty far away from Philadelphia.

I was little nervous this afternoon when I couldn't get ahold of our rat train driver. He had called Monday from Ohio and we had planned for me to call him at his house Tuesday at 12pm. No answer. I called again at 1,2,3pm and left 2 messages. I even called Brittney to get her opinion we were hoping he had just zonked out though after his long trip and had made it home safely. On the way home from work around 3:30pm my phone started ringing and it was our rat train driver sorry that he had overslept. And no wonder- he left Thursday for the drive to South Dakota and didn't get back to Philadelphia until around 3am Tuesday! He adopted 2 male rats.

We met a little after 4:30pm at a Petco parking lot near my work. We chatted for a bit about rats and I got to see my girls. Was so excited to see them after nearly 2 1/2 months of the travel plans being organized and finally getting a driver. :-)

Please meet, Honey, Clover & Hazelnut! Honey is an fawn self, Clover is beige hooded and Hazelnut is a black berkshire.

Clover is soooo curious! She is like a little energizer bunny! When our driver handed me my cage all I saw at first was Clover my other girls were hiding and you could just see their little noses.

I put some of their little fleece pieces from the travel cage into their cage to make it smell more like home. Then they had some nice refreshing coconut water after their long trip, and mini marsh mellows were passed out to all 11 rats!

Honey is very shy and a bit frightened right now. She cries a bit when you pick her up but all of them were really handled well and are used to people. Honey will come towards me when she is in the cage to nibble my fingers a bit.

Hazelnut is also a bit shy and scared, but she also will nibble on your fingers. She is also a flying rat! She flew off the chair and onto my shoulder about 2 times when taking photos. She is very quick and hard to get photos of!


3 Min Chocolate Mug Cake

Photo Credit
I found this recipe online and wanted to share it. This is so easy to make!

(I edited the recipe).


-3 tablespoons flour
-3 tablespoons sugar
-3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
-1 egg
-3 tablespoons milk
-3 tablespoons oil
-Small splash of vanilla extract
-1 large mug.

3 tablespoons chocolate chips (optional)

Cooking Time: 3 minutes in microwave.

(Cake will rise over the top of the mug, don't be alarmed.)

I added powdered sugar on top of mine when it was done. So yummy & quick!!!

Also, here is a low fat version of chocolate mug cake. I haven't tried this out, but if you do let me know in my comments how it turned out!

For non chocolate lovers: Yellow cake in a mug recipe.

(I tried the vanilla version and it is just as good!)


Holly: Jan 2010-Aug 2010

My beautiful Holly rat has gone to the rainbow bridge. I had to take my baby to the vet this evening to be put to sleep. There was a noisy dog in the waiting room and I had to keep petting Holly because she was frightened. Holly didn't go quickly... like Ginger she didn't want to let go...

I just lost Ginger & Saffy 3 weeks ago... and now this. I've only had Holly since January. She was around 8 months old. She loved to give kisses. She was the youngest rat I've had develop a mammary tumor. She didn't even know she had a tumor. But she began to develop an abscess and sore on her tumor and I didn't want her to suffer... goodbye my baby. I know Lily & Rosie going to miss her also, as they've been living with her since I brought them home 3 weeks ago.


Awesome Philadelphia Treats!

I do a lot of posts about my travels in the Philippines. I thought I would share today some of my favorite Philadelphia treats and treat places!

Philadelphia Soft Pretzel

Oh my, there is nothing like a Philadelphia soft pretzel! (Usually get them from Jim's!) Whenever I'm in the Philippines, I end up craving one of these by the end of my trip, and Auntie Anne's just doesn't cut it! A Philadelphia soft pretzel is usually longer than a regular rounded pretzel. It has a crunchy oven baked outer layer and the inside is soft and doughy and delicious!

Philly Cheese Steak

You can't come to Philadelphia without trying a cheese steak! You can get them from pretty much any pizza place in the area besides a few places that just specialize in cheese steaks, like Steve's Prince of Steaks. A Philadelphia cheese steak is usually served on an Italian Amoroso roll. (Another Philly company!) It will have thinly chopped beef. Some people like cheese whiz, I rather have American cheese on mine. And don't forget fried onions and mushrooms! Mmmm! Though you can have a cheese steak plain or with any or as many toppings you want.


You might know a hoagie by another name if you're from different parts in the USA. A Hoagie is a sub, grinder, hero, etc. In Philadelphia the most popular hoagie, is the Italian Hoagie. They are almost always served on Italian Amoroso rolls. With, Genoa salami, capicola ham, provolone cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, onions. Yum!!!


Tastykake is truly a Philadelphia food! The company started in Philadelphia back in 1914! In Philly you can find Tastykake's in the supermarket, drugstore, Walmart, etc. Love their butterscotch krimpets and the peanut butter kandy kakes. And in the fall they have mini pumpkin pies!

Rita's Water Ice

Rita's Water Ice!
This is another East coast chain. They open in the Spring and close just after Labor Day. Though there are a few mall locations that are open year round. Gotta love their vanilla/chocolate custard! Mmmm heaven!!!

Herr's Snacks

Herr's Snacks, is another East Coast favorite. Potato Chips, Pretzels, Cheese Curls, Popcorn, Corn Chips, etc. My favorite are the Fine Cut Ripple chips. They are similar to Ruffles.


Wawa is like an upscale 7 Eleven. There are only locations in: Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, and Virginia. Gotta love their breakfast sandwiches, salads, wraps, coffee & fee free ATM machines! (And my cousin would say their meatball sandwiches!)


Scrapple is a Pennsylvania thing in general. People either love it or hate it. I love it! Scrapple reminds me almost of sausage. Only without the casing. It's formed into a loaf and cut into very thin slices, then fried in a pan. It's usually served at breakfast time along with scrambled eggs.

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Sooo... 2 weeks ago I mailed our immigration lawyer the packet containing all our financial paperwork and I-864. Then nearly a week after I mail it I remembered... "Oh crap! I didn't include my employment verification letter!"

It took me a heck of a time to even obtain that paper. My job sent me in loops and hoops trying to get a paper that says I've worked there the past 8 years! And then I forget to send it to the lawyer! Ugh! I did scan & email our lawyer a copy of the letter, but he really wanted the original to submit to immigration.

I drop the original letter in the mail exactly a week later by USPS Priority. Never a problem... usually arrives at our lawyers office within 1 day. Another week goes by- nothing. It was lost. Never arrived. Did I get tracking or delivery confirmation? Noooo.... idiot me!

This past Saturday morning, I go to the post office when it opens around 9am. I spend $13.00 for express mail so we'll have tracking and I send off a copy of the letter. They write on my receipt will be delivered AUGUST 9TH.

I check tracking early this morning and what does it say?!

We attempted to deliver your item at 7:48 am on August 08, 2010 in PHILADELPHIA, PA 19102 and a notice was left. You may pick up the item at the Post Office indicated on the notice, go to www.usps.com, or call 800-ASK-USPS to arrange for redelivery. If this item is unclaimed after five days then it will be returned to the sender. Information, if available, is updated periodically throughout the day. Please check again later.

WHAT THE HECK?! When does the United States Post Office deliver on Sundays?!

I email our lawyer. By this time it's around 10am. He says he was actually in the office on Sunday, but the Post Office did not knock, etc. It hasn't been redelivered. So he says, "I think we'll have to use the scanned image you sent." About an hour later though, he emails me back and says, "Package arrived! We'll submit the I-864!"

So... no thanks to myself for forgetting and USPS our immigration process has been delayed 2 weeks... arrgh. I'm using Fed Ex next time! :(

Here is our completed steps and what we have left.

NOTE: Our lawyers Peter J. Gonzales & Shanna Stanton have changed firms. They are no longer with Kahiga Tiagha. They are now with Green and Spiegel LLC, but still located in Philadelphia.

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