Frankenprey: How I Feed My Ragdoll Cat, Prossimo
Originally published Jun 13, 2014
I wanted to rerun this post by Christy because I get a lot of comments on this video that I did as a result of this post:
I’d like to share how I feed Prossimo. Let me start by saying that, based on my experience, while I am an advocate for raw feeding I have no personal opinion about how other people feed. I am writing this to share and it is not a judgement!
Also, you should know that I am a huge fan of exclamation points(!!) and simply an uneducated person giving my opinion. Whatever you decide to feed your pets you will need to embark upon on your own research, draw your own conclusions and make your decisions independent of my experiences and opinions. I am not a professional nor do I play one on TV!
While all of this may seem overwhelming and a lot of work, take it from a Certified Lazy Pants, it’s really quite easy!
First, there are basically four types of raw:
1) Commercial “kibble” type raw
2) Ground (either commercial or homemade)
4) Whole Prey
Personally, I am not a fan of “commercial” raw (ground or kibble) as there is typically way too much bone content, other fillers (peas, rice, etc…), the benefits of crunching/ripping/tearing are lost and the risk of bacterial overload is higher since there is more surface area of the meat for bad bacteria to come in contact with and grow. It’s also generally much more expensive.
Some people do find that employing commercial raw for transition or for a particular reason helpful.
I used increasing amounts of raw meat with decreasing amounts of commercial kibble-type raw, canned kitten food and tuna juice to transition Prossimo over four days. From what I gather, this quick of a transition is quite unusual for a cat so don’t use my experience to compare your progress. Every bite of meat is a success!
I use the ratio of 85% meat, 5% bone, 10% organ (5% liver and 5% other organs). I started Prossimo with chicken, turkey, pork, beef and lamb. Cats can’t make Taurine but they need it. All meat contains Taurine but parts that are used a lot or those with electrical activity have higher amounts (thigh, heart, eyes, brain, tongue, etc…).
The items I fed were primarily sourced from grocery stores. Since the animals were a bit older and moved around some resulting is using their muscles (as much as factory farming allows for), I did not supplement with Taurine.
Next, you need to find out how much to feed your cat (FYI, it’s the same calculation for a dog). You’ll need the ideal adult weight of your cat multiplied by 2% – 4% based on their activity level. If your cat is a couch potato and thinks moving is akin to devil worship, then feed closer to 2%. If your cat doesn’t know the meaning of a nap, closer to 4% or more is where you want to start. If you are lazy and bad at math like me, here’s a handy dandy calculator (scroll to the bottom of the page).
I have only had one animal (my current dog, Yoda), not self-regulate on a raw diet so if your calculations show that your cat should be offered 5oz. food a day but he’s screaming at you for more, go ahead and feed him more. If he wants less, don’t stress. Just keep an eye on his weight. Please note, raw fed animals will typically gain weight but their shapes will change showing that the gain is from muscle; they are not overweight.
Here’s some pictures of Yoda (clearly not a cat!) that are a great visual of this:
I started Prossimo with about 6oz. of food a day. Here’s an example of a day’s worth of “franken-prey” that I fed him:
Frankenprey diet for cats:
M turkey thigh (skin-on, boneless – 2.5 oz +/-)
M pork roast (boneless, skinless – 2.5 oz +/-)
B quail (.3 oz)
OO pork kidney (.3 oz)
OL pork liver (.3 oz)
So, the M stands for meat and can be substituted for any meat that you can get and your cat likes. The darker/redder the meat the better (fyi pork is only a “white” meat for marketing purposes!) I would buy stew meat when I was really lazy since I didn’t need to cut it. Heart is a good meat (when feeding raw it’s muscle, not an organ), as are gizzards. Please note, cats need fat so don’t feed them like Jack Sprat!
Fish is totally unnecessary but if you do decide to feed it, make sure it’s wild and sparingly fed. Whole eggs can be a good choice.
Bone, indicated by B, usually need to be smaller for a cat. I bought dressed quail from Whole Foods (two were $10-$15), which is expensive but really easy to cut up in the appropriate quantities. Dressed quail are heavy bone content so count them as all bone. Chicken “ribs”, wing tips, Cornish Game Hens, sliced rounds of chicken or turkey necks can all be good choices.
The first time I fed Prossimo a whole dressed quail he went nutso so I knew he liked it, so I stuck with it. He won’t eat bigger bone, not even adult chicken feet so for me quail became a one-stop bone source!
Another trick you can try (don’t guarantee it will work) is to wrap bone in a nice thick hand towel and take a hammer to it. If this works you can feed wings, thighs, etc… You can also grind up eggshells instead. I’ve never done this – I tried just breaking them up into tiny pieces but they were firmly rejected! As I understand it, you should dry out the eggshells, put them through a spice or coffee grinder and feed 1/2 teaspoon per pound of meat.
You can also try “ribboning” the meat. Basically cutting or pulling it in “ribbons” hanging (still attached) to the bone. You may need to start with both hammering the bone and ribboning the meat.
A word about rejection… if at first your cat stymies your success, try, try, try again!
OO or “other organ” is organ, other than liver that you can find. Find your community’s ethnic grocery stores, talk to farmers, backyard farmers, processors, hunters, etc…
Liver, indicated by OL above, is any liver you can get. Typically grocery stores will carry chicken and beef with regularity.
When feeding anyone in our families – people or four-legged – the food supply itself is not fed properly much anymore which means the balance of Omega’s are
off. For example, if cattle are fed grass the meat butchered from that animal will have a nice balance of Omegas with Omega 3 being higher (good!). If, on the other hand, cattle are fed grain will not have a nice ratio of Omegas – Omega 3’s will be lower (bad!). This is why Omega 3 supplements have become so popular.
Once you get your cat eating the diet, try incorporating one drop of an Omega 3 or Krill Oil capsule. It took nearly a 1.5 years for Prossimo to eat food with any Omega 3. I tried one drop a week and was soundly rejected each time! This is a good lesson in thinking “long-term”.
I bagged up enough food for 2-3 weeks at a time and would freeze each meal. Generally Prossimo ate 2x a day but there are days that he only ate once and others when he ate 4x. He’s a self-regulator and not overweight so if he’s telling me he’s hungry I believe him and feed him more. This meant that I bagged up 14 – 21 bags of food, at 6 ounces each. To make it super easy, using the sample menu above I would feed him 2.5oz of meat + .3oz of bone in one meal and 2.5 oz of meat and a “organ cube” (see below) for his 2nd meal.
I have a Kitchen Binz! container in my fridge that I keep two baggies of food in. Cats usually like their food room temperature but your cat’s fussiness may vary! Prossimo will eat food right out of the fridge or room temperature. If you know you have to leave for work at 7:30am, pull one bag out when you wake up and let it come to room temperature while you curl your lashes and otherwise make yourself fabulous for the day. Do not put food in a microwave or in boiling water. If you are in a jam, you can put the baggie of food in a bowl of hot tap water.
The easiest way to “prepare” organs is to freeze them first. Bring them out to thaw just a bit and as soon as you can get your knife thru, start cutting. Being lazy, I would use simple math and ice cube trays to make this go by quick! Knowing that at .25oz a day of liver it would take 64 days to get thru one pound, I would first cut the a pound of liver into four. Put three of the pieces back in the freezer (depending on your freezer room and how many ice cube trays you have of course!).
Take the 4oz. piece and cut it into 16 pieces (16 x .25oz = 4oz). Put each of the 16 pieces in its own cube space. Repeat with kidney or other organ but put on top of the liver. Freeze. Once done, you will have 16 “organ cubes”!
Depending on your cat, you may find that eating organ frozen / cold or on the other end of the spectrum, seared works better. For Prossimo frozen was the preferred preparation. Eventually though he refused all organ which was one my motivators for switching to Whole Prey. More on that later…
Prossimo eats either on a towel or in a cabinet that I “made” (I took a old cabinet and drilled a hole in it for him to enter/exit thru. I have a “3 Strikes Your Out” rule – if either animal moves their food off the towel,
the food is taken away for a while. He sometimes takes his food elsewhere and I tell him “bring your food back to the towel, now”. More often than not, he comes back. If he doesn’t and I have to move it, I let him know if he does it again, the food is going away.
I rotate two towels that I feed the animals on. Once they are done with their meal, I put the towel in a cloth bag and store it in my furnace closet. Every couple of weeks I wash the towels and the bag. You may find a different method that works best for you. I have found that both cats and dogs don’t really appreciate plastic or ceramic for chunks of meat, they need the leverage cloth provides and it’s easy enough to move the meat or themselves around on.
A word about cleanliness. I wash my hands with soap and water. I clean my prep area. I clean like I do for my own food. You should do what you feel is best.
- Variety: try to feed as much variety as you can so you don’t end up with a picky bugger of a cat.
- Feed to Tolerance: if your cat’s stools change or they hork things up, increase or decrease as necessary. Sometimes changes are no big deal, however “know thy cat” is a great mantra.
- Poops: watch poops as they tell you a lot! If they are grey, crumble, have bright red blood on the outside, are hard, etc… that’s telling you that they ate too much bone. If their poops are soft, pudding-y, more liquid, etc., that’s telling you it’s not enough bone and/or too much organ. Also, raw fed cats poop way less. Sometimes they poop once a day and at the other end of the spectrum, sometimes it’s once every five days.
- Rejection: cat’s are buggers, don’t give up.
- Time: cat’s are buggers, for most cats (except generally for kittens), the transition is work and takes time. It can be time consuming but remember, the end goal is one where you have figured out your cat’s likes & dislikes and you have much more confidence in your knowledge and can handle any curve ball your bugger cat bats your way!
- Long-Term: you are feeding for the long-term. If your cat is a bugger and doesn’t get all the liver it “should” in a week, don’t panic. As long as you know and are working toward it, that’s fine.
- Tricks: cats are buggers, don’t hesitate to employ tricks – canned tuna/salmon juice drizzled over food, slightly searing to cooking organs, crumbled cat treats on top of food – whatever works to get your fuzzy bugger interested in that bowl of food works. Cats can be more receptive to changes in their food if they are hungry. Push their feeding time back a bit and see if that helps with new foods. Remember, you won’t be employing these tricks long-term so try not to stress.
I always recommend the RawCat Yahoo! group. There are a lot of really experienced people on the groups. I do hear, and have seen, that sometimes people feel beat up after asking a question.
Go in understanding that the same core group of people has answered the same question probably 200k+ times, across a couple of groups. Sometimes answers can come across as snarky. Just try to separate the snark from the information and you’ll find a great resource.
Hare-Today is a source that can ship different varieties of meats and organs. If you are in California you can check out the processor Creston Valley Meats (the system of ordering can be a bit confusing so if you have questions, please let me know). Joining the Carnivore Feed Supplier Yahoo! group is another resource.
If you’ve gotten this far, thank you! Next time I will talk about feeding Raw, Whole Prey. It’s a bit different and, in my opinion, it’s a lot easier which is good news for a Certified Lazy Pants such as myself!
the raw food is an interesting thought but I have one cat with tummy issues that needs special gastro food from the vet and just having some freeze dried turkey treats for two days was enough to give him bloody diarrhea, so we will stick to the vet food
geez i can’t believe it was that long ago! i can’t watch the video again. i laughed so hard but felt like puking at the same time. i would love to be able to feed my cats like this but i just can’t. i think they would probably respond like trigg and charlie as well. i tried to feed them raw turkey necks and they looked at me like i was nuts.. hahaha! one of them started scratching like he was trying to bury it. they are too spoiled on the weruva pouches!!
i have to semi-watch the video every time someone comments!
When you want to get out of hosting dinners at your house, just include that video in your email invite!!
Wow, it feels like yesterday that I wrote this! Here’s a video of Prossimo eating – not nearly as entertaining as your video Jenny!
WARNING: nobody should click this link if watching a cat eat whole prey will upset you in any way (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7KaAXcg9Y9Y). You’ve been warned!
It is amazing that I am allowed out of the house by myself.
I, never the sharpest claw on the paw, just realized the meaning of “frankenprey.” (I never said I was a rocket scientist, just a mad scientist.) I thought…well, never mind.
So I feed frankenprey, aka somewhat precisely measured slop topping a flayed drumstick or other exotica, and you feed whole prey. Whole prey is out for me because of the bones. Jolie can scrape her teeth on large bones but she cannot ingest small bones, not even a toothpick’s worth. On ultrasound, I can still see the puckering where her ileum and colon were spliced together 16 years ago.
For a cat without a multiplicity of severe health issues, I think whole prey is the way to go. Easy, inexpensive, and about as species-appropriate as you can get. But, if you can’t do that, what’s the saying? “Don’t let your search for the perfect blind you to the good?” There is nothing more satisfying to me than seeing a very feminine, tufted butter pecan paw holding on to a raw turkey drumstick while ripping off pre-ribboned shreds of meat.
Duh. How humiliating.
No need to moderate. Just go ahead and cancel. I should have “got it” when this site didn’t recognize Dementia Boy, but, as I’ve often said, I’m not the sharpest claw on the paw.
The calorie counts seem high, especially for the chicks and mice, when compared to fatty duck and geese. But I’m not the least bit familiar with frankenprey foods. Does Prossimo eat his entire meal, leaving no ear unchewed?
When my cats were eating canned, they ate two – three times the calories of cats I “met” on various blogs. These two are athletes, tree dwellers, although they don’t dwell in any one place for long. Is Prossimo similar?
He’s not eating franken-prey (aka “prey model”), he’s eating whole prey. In other words I’m not cobbling together different meat proteins and cuts to approximate whole prey, I’m offering the “prey” whole.
Also, I have work to do but since I calculated the calories for comparison I can’t stop researching and I’m not getting anything else done – I blame you!
Typically he eats 100% of the chicks. I would say 98% of the time. Other times there will be an odd foot left or a tiny bit of the chick, like less than a popped kernel of corn.
It does seem high but when you look at the caloric content of an egg or a balut egg (ugh) it does make sense that a baby chick would be virtually the same or am I not taking something else into account?
Using the USDA chart, mice have more crude fat than day-old chicks and ducks have a small amount more than chicks.
Juvenile Mice: 30.1%
This would account for the mice’s high caloric value and the kcal/g between the three seem to align.
While it wouldn’t seem so I’m wondering if fur, feathers and other accouterments are adding to the calorie count. Here’s why… when I feed dogs whole prey, it’s quite obvious when she poops. Her poops are dominated by feathers. If they’ve eaten a whole rabbit, I swear it’s like they are pooping cotton balls! Feed goat, you get furry poops. As I understand it, the poop consists of what the animal can’t use, what is not biologically available. Makes sense.
Prossimo’s poops, other than even less smell than when he eats franken-prey, have zero evidence of ingestion of fur, feathers and the like.
Perhaps a nonsense theory but an observation that has had me puzzled for quite some time.
Prossimo is not super active. Twice a day he usually runs through the house sounding like a herd of elephants. He sleeps up in his cat tree, on the back of the couch or down in one of Yoda’s crates. Usually twice in a 24-hour period he conks out hard (late morning thru early afternoon and during the night). The rest of his time is spent watching birds, pouncing desperately at them, grooming, harassing Yoda, lightly napping or trying to get me to feed him.
His activity level doesn’t seem to match his caloric intake but I do know from experience with dogs that are fed raw, they are more “appropriately active” – more alert, not hyper, have better stamina.
I’m turning into a dog with a bone, I can’t let it go!
This is a bone I’ve got to let go – at least for a while.
I should not have said the calorie count seemed high without also saying that the fat content seemed high. Yes, the numbers add up. But this chart is not showing the same protein/fat ratio that I use for duck: 88/12. I include skin, and I don’t use breast meat.
(The world conspires against me. Floppycats no longer recognizes Dementia Boy. A sad day indeed. I must now go find Dementia Boy.)
It would be the ideal role for Yoda since she’s been basically living that since Prossimo’s arrival – just laying on the ground waiting to be slapped, bit, humped, etc. by Casanova!
The calorie requirements seems like a lot so I did a little digging and found this list which I thought you might be interested in:
Now please keep in mind that while I love reading about science, when confronted with charts, statistics and footnotes I get clammy with a side of heart palpitations so there is a possibility that I’ve read it wrong!
Prossimo’s daily meals generally consist of:
3 hoppers (juveniles, avg. weight each 10g, 6.65 kcal/g) which would be about 200 calories
3 one-day old chicks (avg. weight each 1.5oz/42.5g, 5.8 kcal/g ) which would be about 740 calories
1 quail (avg. weight each 2oz/56.7, 6.79 kcal/g) which would be about 385 calories
If I understand correctly it is generally accepted that 1 kcal = 1 calorie. If that’s the case he is eating 1,325 calories a day! In March & April he ate double that a day. Wow!
For me to get met my daily caloric requirements I’m forced to eat ice cream, cheesecake, chocolate covered pretzels. It’s a hard-knock life and I’ve got the behind to prove it!
Prossimo developed a “problem” with liver and other organs. He decided he would no longer eat them. He did not like them here or there, in a box or with a fox, in a pail or with a …
Yes, he would eat them IN a whole prey quail! That’s what motivated me to pull the trigger and go whole hog (er quail/chick/mouse)!
With regard to bone I would be curious if you fed the entire quail for bone or you gave little bits at a time? If the latter, I think this shows a great example of “know thy cat”!
Again, assuming it’s the latter are you thinking perhaps mouse bone served wrapped in organ, meat & fur may elicit a different reaction? One thing that I read (but did not research) is that mice pinkies don’t really have “bone” as it were. That would make sense because when Prossimo eats then instead of the larger mice, his poo is super soft (not enough bone).
I totally LOVE that they will gnaw on a bone!
My hed hurtz.
I’m just imagining myself playing hostess to multiple clowders of cats, offering them 60s’ style appetizers, mice impaled upon toothpicks, wrapped in bacon, chicks in blankets, and other such delicacies.
Yes, your numbers are right if Rodent Pro’s numbers are right. Have I said in the last 30 seconds that my hed hurtz?
“Density” is the word whirring about in my mind, the possible answer to a question I do not yet know. Is a baby chick more dense than strips of duck? Rhetorical question. It *seems* like my cats eat more than Prossimo, but they eat 5 x 200 calories (approx) daily, so, no, they don’t.
As I recall, I split the adult quail into eight sections. Jolie crunched some bone from her section, but not a lot. But it was enough to cause bloody soft-serve poops, which she hasn’t had in a long time. Izzy was fine. Izzy is always fine. I am now going to have to study mouse anatomy and physiology.
My hed still hurtz. Tres leches will help.
It could be the amount of bone. When I fed Prossimo dressed quail as part of his franken prey diet he only ate .3 (that’s point 3) ounces a day. I don’t know how much they weighed but they were 8 ounces, one would have taken him 26 days to eat. However, “know thy cat”!
When I first gave Prossimo the dressed quail, I just gave him the whole thing. He loved me but then paid for it with super hard poops with bits of blood streaked on the outside. When I feed him whole prey quail he does not have that problem at all – just normal “whole prey poop”.
I found that Rodent Pro got that list from the USDA:
It just seems crazy that that Prossimo is eating that many calories on a daily basis, let alone when he eats double and is taking in 2,650+/- calories in a day! I’m pretty convinced that there’s something to the chart that I’m not understanding?!
Christy, why DON’T you play a professional on TV? It could be a combo food prep – crafts series (“101 Things You Can Do With a Turkey Drumstick”) with you hosting as a cat-oriented Julia Child. Prossimo and Jolie would co-star with Yoda relegated to the floor. Jolie would guard the food towel, exposing her beautiful caramel tummy to the viewing audience; Prossimo would just shrug, walk up to her, and grab the food. Jolie would then jump down and slap Yoda. A bit bizarre, perhaps, but I think there’s a market for it. *I’d* watch it, but first I’d have to buy a TV.
Excellent, just excellent.
Living by Yeats’ poem, “The Fascination of What’s Difficult,” I’ve taken a different route, but I think I’ll end up where you are, with a little bit of tweaking. The cats have been in a constant process of transition since December. *I’M* the one who is slowing things down, not they. They’re ready to gnaw, slice and shred. They’re already doing it, but I’m holding them back with frozen “pate,” coarse ground mixes from the butcher. Izzy and Jolie really miss fresh venison, which the butcher would cut in jerky-like strips. The grrrls would then strip and gnaw it further – Jolie with only seven teeth.
Just a couple of things different about my cats that influence their diet:
(1) Both require approximately 1,000 calories a day just to maintain their weight. Yep, you read that right: 1,000 calories. (I require 5,000, so I figure it’s a family thing.) Thus, I can’t use a true prey model because they require more fat; otherwise, they’d be eating all day.
(2) Both they and I have a problem with liver, but for different reasons. Since they’re on a high fat diet, I add extra vitamins A and D, checking their blood for levels when I do the rest of their labs.
(3) No bone. Unfortunately for Izzy, she must eat what Jolie eats. Jolie eats first, and Izzy will do anything to avoid the drama associated with Jolie. (Yes, they had separate bowls/plates until recently, when I suddenly asked myself, “why???”) If something extra is added after Jolie has finished, she’ll rush back to the kitchen and make Izzy’s life hell. I initially heeded the warnings about bone and IBD cats, then said, “well, let’s try.” Well, let’s combine oxygen with an open flame, too =( So, it’s calcium carbonate via eggshells, ground to a powder. I allow the cats to gnaw meat off of big bones, but no more whole quail or Cornish game hens.
Wonderful, easy-to-comprehend article, Christy. Thank you.
Jenny, I think you’re one step ahead of the game – depending on how you want to play the game – since da boyz eat shredded food. Shredded mouse – oh, help me – perhaps is not in your immediate future, but shredded chicken might be the key. I have found that cats are easier than we think they are; we, with the best of intentions, just make meal time unintentionally difficult for them.
THANK YOU BOTH VERY MUCH!!!
Hi Christy & Jenny – Thank you for such a clear, understandable and amusing post. I am not planning on feeding raw – but have in the past toyed with it. Back then, it just seemed way too complicated to know what & how much was right. You make it clear and simple! I have given, and do give, all of my cats raw chicken liver at random intervals and they are randomly receptive (buggers for sure!). I think my offerings may increase a bit now. Again – this was so informative – and easy to digest (ugh, sorry). 🙂
Thank you for your kind words Betty and for getting through the ginormous article!
Hi Christy –
I could not get Prossimo & Yoda’s names out of my mind all night, so I came back here and did a name search. I am so glad to see and hear that you all are doing so well!
Hi Jenny, I love your helpful information. I have been researching the web trying to find a provider of whole prey. I look forward to your next article discussing that topic. My concern has been finding a company that feeds the prey animals quality, non GMO foods and does not use heavy antibiotics or hormones. If you have any suggestions I would greatly appreciate it. I am close to raising my own prey animals as a food source.
I think it’s going to depend on what you want to feed and where you live.
That being said, I don’t know that it’s possible to find mice feeder breeders who will feed the highest quality mouse diet available with no GMOs.
To find 1-3 day old chicks that were “fed” properly, you would need to start with pastured chickens and then hatch their eggs and feed those chicks. I imagine that would be cost prohibitive.
The quail that Simon from Creston Valley Meats (link in article) sells come from the quail that he raises. He feeds them “Certified non-GMO grains, grown on Certified Big O, no Chemicals or herbicide and pesticide free soil.”, so that’s a start!
Do a Google search for “reptile mice feeder” or something similar and you’ll find suppliers so you’ll be able to ask them directly about the diet that they feed.
Bless your heart – Prossimo is sooo blessed to have you as his mom to do all this for him. Wish I could do this, but it is too involved for me because of my disability. The shopping for the meat, then fixing it, trying to get them to eat it, what to do with it when they don’t, etc. Very overwhelming for someone like me though I wish I could do it and would do it under normal circumstances because it sounds like something that would keep them super healthy and most like their natural food source. Maybe some day…..
Teresa, I totally understand where you are coming from. Once you get them transitioned it’s generally a process of 1) put meat down 2) watch cat eat and you’re done! Getting to that point can be the easiest thing ever or a long drawn-out process which is never fun and can test the biggest saint’s patience!
You may find that feeding whole prey is easier for you – there’s certainly no portioning! Of course, it’s just a matter if you cat will eat it. I’ll be writing another post on that.
Wish luck & health no matter what you choose!
Teresa, if I had to go to the grocery store and do other *real* shopping, I couldn’t do this. I’m blessed to have a quality butcher around the corner, who is both tolerant and understanding. I easily short-circuit, and when my energy is gone, it’s gone. I always keep canned food at home and add a 5.5 oz can to the grrrlls’ daily slop. The day will come – and I don’t know when, but soon – when I can no longer measure and mix and freeze, and I’m thinking that Christy’s way, ultimately, is the easiest way to go.
I have a housekeeper – for just one person and two cats. And I don’t have a husband – or, if I do, he’s buried in the back 40 and no one has seen him for decades =) I have wonderful people who do things for me so that I only have to do cats, mine and the ferals, and forest patrol. I am lucky, and I am grateful every minute of every day for my good fortune and even better people.