30 June, 2016

Photobombed Again

Sweetie is incredibly difficult to photograph.  She dislikes when I stare or aim a camera or phone at her, plus her black fur is not easy to catch in either bright sunlight or shadow.  I keep trying, and have been since she first appeared in 2009.

Patty O'Malley only wants me to pay attention to him, so while I'm trying to snap some fantastic view of Sweetie...he simply walks right into the frame to photobomb.  After I give him enough attention, he'll stroll off again.  The images above are in sequential order.

29 June, 2016

Why The Cat Litter Bag Ate My Wedding Ring

Married since 1993, I've continuously worn my wedding ring.

That is, until it became uncomfortable recently.  Because I'm not quite the same size I once was!

On my fat finger
I put the ring on, and take it off again.  I put it in my pocket, or leave it on my dresser. 

Next job on my agenda: add litter to boxes.  I tore off the sewn paper closure, and push it all into my pocket.  Why?  Because anything string-like attracts Chuck...and he will eat it.  String is not a good thing for a cat's innards, but Chuck loves to try...and try...and try.  Things like that must be hidden from his view, and quickly.

A new bag of litter

See the sewn paper end?

Reenactment: Empty litter bag, with detritus
After topping off the litter boxes, I dipped into my pocket to throw out the string and paper.  I sat down again, heartily pleased with myself for checking one chore off of my to-do list.

Later, I look for my ring, and I dig into my pocket to pull it out...and IT'S NOT THERE!

Whoa!  Freak!  Horrors!  Oh NO!  But...oh YES!  I'd thrown it out, into the empty litter bag, with the string and paper.  Careful to appear calm, I get up and stroll into the kitchen where that empty bag was placed.  

I lucked out that 1) nothing else was tossed into that bag, like yucky coffee grounds or (even yuckier) litter box peeballs and pooplogs , and 2) The Hubby did not notice my panic, and the planet began spinning in its normal orbit again.  Ring gets stuffed into my pocket again.

Essentially, that cat litter bag ate my wedding ring, and I'm sticking to that story!

P.S. I used the terms 'peeballs' and 'pooplogs' in honor of an old friend, Orbit the cat.  His blog was a favorite of mine until Orbit decided to leave us on December 11, 2014.  His people tried to keep blogging, but we haven't heard from them in a while, here.  I hope they know that we are still thinking about them, and Orbit.

Disclaimer: Although my photo shows a particular brand of cat litter, I have not received compensation to include it in my blog or in any way am I selling it!  After all, those bags will eat your wedding ring!

28 June, 2016

Here's Your Sign

Purchased this cute little sign at the farmer's market on Saturday.  I think it's perfect for my office credenza collection...don't you think?

27 June, 2016

Cat Dust

Spitty and Elliott are black cats like me?

Sure, show the world my dust!
King Spitty over at Spitty Speaks recently commented about Spitty Dust. And then, Elliott Stands With Spitty at blog William of Mass Destruction. Chucky, not wanting to be left out of the black-cat-fur-shows-everything conversation, graciously allowed me to capture a photo of his own dusty fur.

Chuck, I don't care about your dust...I'm gonna keep smooching you forever....er, um...furrever!  Pfft...pfft...pfft...

26 June, 2016

Dog Day?

This in one of three Newfoundlands at this house

I met several cute dogs while at the farmer's market yesterday.  No photos, because I was too busy petting and cooing!  There was a gorgeous black Great Dane, a King Charles Spaniel, and two Shih Tzus...one who was a puppy and I fell in love with it's little wagging tail.  Her human was happy to let me pet and play with her pup, as a way to help socialize her.  Glad to help!

Later on, during my evening neighborhood walk, I encountered two smallish Terrier dogs, an overweight but loving and beautifully brindled Bull Dog, and an old lady Springer Spaniel, who's human and I compared fur amounts on our clothes from our respective pets.  There was a Malamute, three Shar Peis, and one Newfoundland behind fenced yards that I did not get to pet.

The Hubby, every so casually, suggested that I may be a Doggy Mama, in Cat Mama's clothing.  WHAT?!?  I just like all animals (except most insects), so I just happened to have one Dog Day...doesn't mean nuthin'.

Look...see...lots of photos of CATS!
Sweetie, relaxing in the shade

Chucky, doing the dangle
Patty O'Malley, being silly
Angel, in MY chair

24 June, 2016

Aries: The Third 'O' Cat

Aries, with his own bowl

Sweetie eats on the steps

Aries, trying to ignore me

Patty O'Malley ready to jump up

Aries belongs to our backyard neighbor.  Have posted about him here and here, and several other times too.  However, he spends so much time in our yard, that I've been concerned that he's being neglected. Being bossy and nosey, I knocked on the neighbor's front door and found out that Aries has been a primarily outside cat, who lives under the front porch. They put out a supply of kibble for him and for a second cat who stays in the front yard.  A friend may take the other cat to live on their farm, but they will only take one cat.

I did not ask about veterinary appointments, or dental check-ups. Obviously, he's not getting much notice from the humans in his life.  The Hubby and I have been on the fence about how to handle this. Aries wants the food that I put out for Sweetie and Patty O'Malley.  I've tried giving him a handful of kibble, but he always breaks off of that to stare at and bully the others.  Now that I know he's only been living on kibble, I've tried setting out wet food for him.  He likes it, of course.

We don't have a lot of extra funds to be feeding a neighborhood full of cats. But we do have enough bowls for three.  Last week, we began feeding all three cats together; Patty and Sweetie on the feeding station top floor, and Aries on the second floor.  Now there are no more cats being pushed off their bowl, or stared at until they are forced to walk away.  Each cat gets wet food, and kibble twice a day.  And Aries eats every speck of his food.

I'll admit to being torn about this situation, however we'll just move forward as we are now.  The Hubby was the one to set out three bowls on the one day that I slept in last weekend, and he's not said a word about the extra bowl that he now washes up.  So glad I didn't kill him last week by tripping him down the stairs...

22 June, 2016


Chuck loves his new toy!  Fresh catnip, and it's a bitey, kicky toy.  And thanks to all who have wished for Chuck to feel better; look at him...he's sleek and beautiful, full of life and energy.  Except for a few mishaps here and there, he is doing well.  The Hubby and I are looking long-term with our approach to Chuck's intestinal woes.  ...as long as I turn on the light!... <slap forehead with hand>

21 June, 2016

Trying to Kill The Hubby In The Dark

Oh sure, he looks cute now!
As you may know, Chuck has intestinal problems.  Friday night, I stayed up late to catch up on all the TV shows that I had recorded during the week, and Chuck stayed up with me.  He wasn't feeling well (tail low, sitting all scrunched up, etc.), and he promptly had an accident.  Since it was near midnight and The Hubby had been sleeping for hours, I chose to make the clean up as quietly and quickly as I could, lit by a handy flashlight.  That being done, I tiptoed up the stairs, washed up and hit the hay...

...Until 5:30 am, when I heard a loud crash!  Turns out, in my stealthy dark-of-night zeal, I mistakenly LEFT THE FLASHLIGHT ON THE STAIRS.  The Hubby, while carrying Angel snuggled in his arms, stepped on or kicked the flashlight and nearly lost his footing.  Angel scratching him on his chest and stomach, when he tightened his grip on her.  And he stepped down hard, which jolted his poor, already-sore back.

He survived, as did Angel.  I, however...was in trouble.  BIG trouble.  How did I overlook that one crucial detail?  I apologized and have been forgiven for my error, with the proviso that no matter how late it is, TURN ON THE OVERHEAD LIGHT!  Yeah, I messed up.  Really, I was NOT trying to kill The Hubby.  Really!

As for Chuck: between the 'regular' veterinarian and the holistic one, we've been trying different things to help him out.  We add/we subtract to his diet. Sometimes he's okay for weeks, then he's not. It's a real test to try to find the 'sweet spot', and so far, we haven't found one that lasts.  Rest assured, we continue to work hard to have Chuck in his optimal range; it is just alarming when he backslides with little warning, such as Friday night.

20 June, 2016

New Cat Photo Frame

A recent pic of Chucky
The office credenza

Yep, I found another cool cat photo frame while at the resale shop on Saturday!  Ssshhh...don't tell The Hubby!  He thinks it's 'weird' that I have so many cat frames. Oh, but he can sit on his keister all day to watch TV images of men running around after, a) basketballs (Congrats to the Cleveland Cavaliers!), b) baseballs, c) soccer balls, d) golf balls, or e) tearing apart old, rusty automobiles and repainting, repairing, and re-engine-ing them.  Like any of that is more fun than my cat photos!

17 June, 2016

Mama Daddy vs. Daddy Mama

The Hubby and I kid each other about our roles in the cat household.  I clean and scoop the litter boxes, feed both sets of cats, monitor all things cat like beddies and toys, and keep up the supply of food, litter and meds. Also I am in charge of all things veterinary.  He pills them and trims nails, stuffs Angel or Chuck into their carriers when it's vet time, and is my back-up when I have to work late or am away.  We both clean up accidents, although I do a bit more since I'm in charge of the puppy-pee pads taped to the walls around the litter boxes.

Therefore, who is the 'mom' and who is the 'dad'?  No need to get involved in complicated gender-specific roles, so that is why The Hubby calls me "Mama Daddy", and he is "Daddy Mama".  Both of us have chores that may seem like they would belong to old-fashioned, 1950's-style stereotypes, and we easily swap these roles, as he cuddles and loves on them, or because I am simply missing for so many hours during the week.  Just to keep the cats healthy and well-adjusted behaviorally is the goal...do we really need to put gender labels on things?




Patty O'Malley
Wishing all Mama Daddies and Daddy Mamas a terrific weekend!

P. S. We lost Mousie recently, and her best friend is really sad.  Please visit Louche Tabby and give her your regards.

16 June, 2016

A New Yard Cat...

After my evening neighborhood walk, I strolled into the backyard to visit with Patty O'Malley and Sweetie.  I spied another cat in the backyard as I turned the corner of the house, and I whipped out my phone really fast in hopes of snapping some shots.  Ah...but just as fast, I realized it WAS NO CAT, but a SKUNK!  The photos are blurry, because I refused to move closer, and that little skunk was moving at a clip.  It ran off into my next door neighbor's garden; the last photo is of Patty watching it go.  Whew!

15 June, 2016

Results of Recent Holistic Vet Visit

Vitamin Bottles
"C" for Chuck
"A" for Angel
Both get the unmarked


"See?  I'm fine!" 
"I don't like going to the vet!"
First off, Angel really wasn't enjoying this vet visit; her fur was flying off in clumps. Every person in the room...doc, two assistants and myself...were covered in fur.  However, she stayed still during the exam, and all in all her systems are doing well.  Our goal for her: increase her energy levels.

Chuck, on the other hand, just kept wriggling and trying to jump off the exam table, so in the end we wrapped him in a towel to keep him still.  The doc was happy with his heart and lung signs; they are remaining stable. Yay!  We are really working on his intestinal woes; our goal is to reduce or stop completely the five different medications he's currently on, or at least the digestive ones.

To make this magic happen, Chuck gets pilled twice a day; The Hubby packages all the pills and vitamins inside a glob of pill paste, which he pops into Chuck's mouth.  Lots of cuddles and lovey-dovey stuff happens before and after.  Angel now gets pilled...er...'vitamined' twice a day too, but she's not used to it and The Hubby is hoping she'll relax into the procedure someday.  I smash up two additional vitamins and mix them into both of their meals; morning and evening.

On top of all that, the vet gave us 'mood drops' to give to Chuck, to help brighten his outlook.  They will make up a bottle for Angel at the next visit.   I am in charge of the mood drops, and I'll admit to forgetting them completely for days!  Shame on me, but I promise to do better.  Plan is to put the drops into his meals, because he won't lick it off of my finger.  The vet says I can just rub it on his gums, but he's already being man-handled twice (or more!) times a day, so less is more in this case.

When we first began the holistic vet visits, I was uncertain if The Hubby was going to be 100% on board with me.  Once we realised that Chuck's heart condition is poor, but that he's not immediately terminal, he agreed with me that we should do all we can do, BUT ONLY AS LONG AS we aren't freaking Chuck out, or seriously compromising our own health and well-being with endless office visits and goofy, impractical processes.  The Hubby actually has taken on the lion's share of duties, and the bond between him and both cats has grown stronger.  They feel his love, even if they don't like him stuffing wads of bacon-flavored (so the package says!) balls down their throats.