Last Minute Improvisation

A few posts back I revealed that Longhorn has Lymphoma. Well, two weeks ago she gave me quite a scare. I thought for sure this was it. I was in the kitchen prepping to make dinner when Longhorn came in and started throwing up. Then she started wobbling, couldn’t stand up, and was falling every time she tried. As soon as my husband got home from work he had to leave and take her to the hospital to be watched overnight. I was so upset that I didn’t get to give her a proper good-bye. I was certain the doctor was going to call some time through the night to tell me she was gone. It was a long night.

I lost my appetite. I told my husband I wasn’t going to make dinner so he was going to have to figure something out. By the time he got back from dropping Longhorn off I had calmed down and it was getting late. Since I’m breastfeeding I know I can’t skip a meal so I decided to get in the kitchen and throw something together. I had something great planned. All fancy using fresh herbs too. Unfortunately, a bad night got worse when I discovered bugs started feasting on my herbs before I got a chance to use them. So using all the other ingredients intended for the night, plus a few more, I made a light vegetable soup that took no time at all.

For the seasoning instead of measuring I just sprinkled in what felt right. You can do the same or use your own mix of seasonings that you prefer.


Makes about 6 servings


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, halved and sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 roasted red pepper, chopped
  • 2 small portobello, chopped
  • 5 tomatoes, diced
  • 4 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • marjoram
  • thyme
  • oregano
  • basil
  • parsley
  • chipotle chili powder, for a little oomph
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 cups lightly packed fresh baby spinach
  • 2 cups cooked yellow split peas


  1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat and saute onion and garlic until softened. Stir so that garlic won’t burn.
  2. Add in pepper, portobello, and tomatoes. Cook for 5 minutes. If it stats to stick add a little broth and scrape the bottom.
  3. Add in seasoning and mix cooking for another minute.
  4. Add vegetable broth and bring to a boil.
  5. Lower heat and stir in tomato paste, spinach, and peas. Cook until heated through.
  6. Serve warm and enjoy a bowl of comfort. I garnished ours with some toasted pine nuts.

Morning came and no phone call from the vet took place. I ended up calling them to check on her and to find out if we could pick her up. The tech that answered said she did well and did not throw up at all. When I picked her up it was like nothing happened. She came out of the back happy to see me and ready to go home. It seemed as though the night before was a fluke. I still don’t know what happened. She may have gotten into something she shouldn’t have in the backyard. All I know is Longhorn’s time isn’t up yet.

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