meet our baby, leni - beyond love

so we realized we never formally introduced our youngest family member, leni. she looks just like us: tall, blonde, long legs - only difference is that we have two and she has four. leni came into our family last september as a tiny bundle of love. she was born in greece but quickly realized the street life wasn't for her, it was just too ruff. and we're glad she chose to come to germany (greece was way too hot for her anyway) to live with us. she's become our fifth kid and we couldn't imagine life without her anymore. we've gone through so much together already: the 4am wake up calls to take a pee, lenis first day at puppy school (proud moms!!!), lenis first time stealing a kids lunch in the park (angry moms!!!), lenis first snow day, lenis first time swimming, lenis first time on holiday in tuscany (again way too hot!). she drives us crazy sometimes but how could you stay mad for long when she gives you this look!?

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fast forward and leni's almost been with us for a year and is a proper teenager! she now loves to sleep in, wander off on her own (parents are so embarrassing!) and generally do the opposite of what we tell her. AND she's an extremely picky eater. meaning she's always eyeing up our food but refuses to touch anything specifically made for dogs (too mainstream!), throwing us disappointed looks when she gets just that. and who can blame her? generic dog food is often packed with additives, weird ingredients and things you've never heard of.

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in july we were asked by purina if leni might want to try their new beyond simply 9 range that promises to be free from all of that, containing only 9 natural ingredients that provide all the nutrients that are needed for a balanced wholefood diet. in fact, all the ingredients could be eaten by us humans, too! that's why we were invited to hamburg to cook a three course menu with the wonderful purina team and a small group of dog-loving bloggers from germany. the challenge: to use as many of the ingredients in the dog food in our own food.

this was our menu:

cold pea soup with mint and salmon tartar

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curry with chicken, sweet potato, carrot, spinach & a side of barley and rice

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carrot cake with mascarpone cream (managed to sneak sweet potato and grits in there, too)

so after learning all about the beyond range, we slipped into our aprons and started chopping, mixing, cooking and baking. we had extra help from the two wonderful cooks at our location, vlet cooking school in hamburg. afterwards we sat down to enjoy our AMAZING menu - everyone raved about the food and we were so so happy with our recipes - we'll share them with you very soon because they're simply too good not to.

that was the easy part. back home it was time to see if leni liked the ingredients just as much as we did. she got all three flavours to try from and immediately found her favourite: salmon.

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lenis recommendation: salmon. 100% leni-approved.

thank you purina, for a wonderful day in hamburg and lots of good food - for us & leni.