Monthly Archives: May 2013

The Long Week

The short week that follows a long weekend is always SO long. Kitten Thunder has been needing many naps that I haven’t had time to take with them.

Last night, after The Boy and I had some beer, the kittehs got me under a blanket and got some super napping done before bedtime.

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But, after a long day – long because Oliver was up at 5 a.m. to start waking me for breakfast – the kittehs were ready for a nap by 4 p.m.

And I was part of their equation.

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Here, Girl.

Cheesy Propositions

I made a grilled cheese sandwich for dinner.

First, an aside: it is really hard to make a grilled cheese sandwich with wheat bread because it doesn’t turn a golden, delicious looking color when it is ready. It just stays brown.

Anywho, Obi was all about helping make a grilled cheese sandwich. I started out with some Muenster cheese, which is what I put on a cold sandwich. I broke off a piece for Obers.

He sniffed it.

He glared at me. This is not cheese.

I grabbed the Gorgonzola cheese crumbles and sprinkled some on my sandwich. Then I gave one to the brown kitten.

Sniff.

Glare. This is not cheese.

To encase the crumbles, I added a piece of Swiss cheese to my sandwich. Then I set down a piece for Obi the Wan.

Sniff. Glare. Not cheese.

Because I didn’t want him to be disappointed, I added a little of our grated cheese – a mix of orange and white – to my sandwich and set some down for Obi. 

At last, some cheese.

The Boy came home from work and also decided to make a sandwich. He discovered that Bleu cheese and feta are also not acceptable.

To summarize: expensive crumbled cheese? Not cheese. Expensive cheese slices? Not cheese. Generic shredded mystery cheese? Yes, please.

Home Improving

The Boy and I got married in December so we’re having a reception at the end of June. That’s the way everyone does it, right?

The reception is a casual gathering at our house, which means there are things that need to be done. Like making room in the garage by unpacking boxes that have been there since we moved in two and a half years ago. I did that today. I even ran a Facebook contest to see who could guess how many hot glue guns I’d find; it is so much easier to buy a new $3 gun than take time looking for one you already own. I’m up to four glue guns with some more boxes to go through tomorrow. The winner, of course, gets a glue gun.

Kitten Thunder did not approve of my working in the garage. They supervised as well as they could from the office window.

Yesterday, I planted things to make our driveway pretty for the party. I even painted the pots Zensai, my now deceased bearded dragon, used as basking spots and put them over his burial site with his favorite snack planted in them.

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Kitten Thunder did no approve of this, either. Out is not an acceptable place for The Girl.

The Boy came home from the train club and, before even coming inside, mowed the lawn.

I took Obi out onto the porch to show The Boy that the brown kitten didn’t approve. A belly needed rubbing, after all.

This afternoon, The Boy took an ancient thermostat out of the wall so we can painted the very scuffed stairwells. It left a big hole which required a big patch. He also pulled off the wallpaper. That was too easy.

Kitten Thunder did not approve. There was a big mess on the stairs where they like to thunder. And a Boy. Boys don’t belong on steps without supervision.

All this disapproval has been exhausting. Since The Girl has not been available to hold him for his nap, Oliver had to go to the next most comforting place. He is on two bags, in a sunbeam, next to the toy box, with the magic toy making stick.

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Poor kitten.

Thunder High

Friend Bev gave me some catnip from her yard to plant in our yard. It’s strong stuff. I decided that it would be worth it, after checking the batteries in the camera, to bring in the pot for Kitten Thunder. Once again, brothers were torn apart by their nip habit.

The video is eight minutes long. That’s as long as I could stand to have it in the house because it was making my eyes water. And it was as much as Kitten Thunder could take. When I came back in from putting the plant in the yard, both kitties were passed out on the rug.

Oli

I apologize for the length and music-less quality of this video; my editing software wasn’t working with me today so I’m giving you raw footage. Think of it as the director’s cut.

Stuck and Goosed

This evening, The Boy was reclined in the chair after dinner and I was laying on the couch with Oliver. When the chair reclines, there’s a little flap that sags in the back. I think I’ve mentioned before that Obi thinks that is the perfect hammock.

Today, though, the chair was only partly reclined so the hammock was only slightly there. Obi was having to work to get in. Really work.

Oliver and I were watching Obi struggle to get into the space in the chair when Oliver got an idea. I know! He so rarely gets ideas! He jumped down and looked closely at the brown kitten, pushing into a too small hole. He tilted his head right, thinking. He tilted his head left, considering.

Then the grey kitten shoved his little pink nose into his brother’s backside. GOOSE!

Brown kitten did not approve. Brown kitten wanted to smack his brother.

Brown kitten was stuck in the chair.

After a few seconds of struggle, trying to back out of the chair, Obi placed his back feet on the side of the chair by his shoulders and gave a mighty shove. He popped out of the chair with all his fur pushed toward his head.

I laughed. Kitten Thunder was insulted.

And they thundered.

***

If you haven’t seen the Sad Cat Diary, you’ve got to. There is one cuss word.

Oli and Obi have both seen this video. They think I’m cruel for laughing at their pain.

Things That Go Bump All Freakin’ Morning

On occasion, Obi will help his brother with the effort to annoy us out of bed. Usually it involves knocking things off the toothbrush table. Today, that something was the smoke detector that I think was broken and replaced by a new one – well, it’s broken now.

The annoyance also involves bump bump bumping the bathroom cabinet. Before our trip, The Boy and I had started closing the bathroom door at night. We haven’t done that since coming back and it has been fine.

Until last night.

But it wasn’t the cabinets.

Now Obi has learned to bump bump bump the bathroom door. He pushes it to almost closed but, since he is short and only ten pounds, he can’t push hard enough to latch the door. So it bounces back. And he pushes it again. And it bounces back.

“Obi. Stop.” Bumpbumpbump.

“Stop.” Bumpbump.

I got up and two kittens – the grey kitten had been crying for an hour – tore out of the room to avoid the anticipated spankings. I wasn’t even thinking about that, but whatever. I pushed the door all the way open.

Five minutes later: bumpbumpbump.

“Ooooobi.” Bumpbumpbump. Oh yes, and Oliver was crying again. Have I mentioned it was three in the morning?

I got up. Cats ran. I closed the door.

That’s when the smoke detector went down. And Oliver cried.

Then papers when off a shelf. And Oliver cried.

Then the blinds were played with. And Oliver cried.

I wanted to cry.

Lucky for everyone involved, The Boy had to get up early for the train club’s show here in town. He got up before I had to kill anyone. And I was close.

So close.

***

Kitten Thunder is recovering, slowly, from the trauma of our absence. They still cling. They still cry. But it gets slightly better. And Oliver’s sweet face, which was bloody and gooey from allergies, seems to be clearing up a little bit now that the stress of us being gone is alleviated. Whew.

Crying…Crying…Cryyyyyying

Last confession: The Boy and I weren’t home yet when I posted on Tuesday, either. We got home at about 9:30 p.m. after a very long day of travel.

After two and a half weeks, Kitten Thunder didn’t even consider punishing us. Obi was desperate for a belly rub. A very stressed out Oliver needed to be held. The Boy and I needed to sleep.

All night, Oliver woke me up to tell me that I’d stopped petting him. It was a long night. It was a snuggly night.

On Wednesday, the crying started. Now that Kitten Thunder has their people back they are frantic to keep them. Any time Oliver leaves me to get a snack, he starts crying for me and keeps crying until he is back in my lap.

While I was in the shower, Obi supervised. And cried. He hates the steam of the shower. I told him he could wait in the next room. He could not. He had to keep me in sight. And cry.

Then The Boy left the house. Obi cried.

Then I left the house. The Boy says Oliver cried.

Today we both left the house. Both kittens cried when I got back.

Then Oliver held me down.

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For the first time in two days I am alone on the couch. Obi is on the floor. Oliver was disturbed by me reaching for the remote so he moved to the chair.

Slowly but surely we will all recover.

In the meantime, it is nice to know we were missed.

Bassackwards

Confession: The Boy and I weren’t home yet when I posted on Sunday. So there are more kittehs of Italy at the end of this post.

Lori, Best Kitteh-Sitter Evah, took great care of Kitten Thunder while we were gone. It wasn’t exactly easy. Winter decided to get in one more big storm, dumping ten inches of super heavy snow on Cheyenne. It must have been super heavy – it ripped a giant branch off one of our trees that was trimmed recently. Poor Lori had to drag the branch/log out of the street. Above and beyond.

She reported that she and the fuzzies had a routine involving a five minute brushing of Obi, then breakfast in the morning.

THEN breakfast!?! I can’t imagine howo unacceptable this was for Oliver. Oli doesn’t even think The Boy should waste time putting on pants in the morning before breakfast. And woe is The Girl who can’t find her glasses (because a cat knocked them off the nightstand) in the morning. She shall be verbally abused for the delay.

In the evening, Lori would return to watch some television. I left her a bag of treats to bribe the kittehs for affection. She has so bribed.

And on the weekend, Lori stayed at our house. Did I mention what a good kitteh sitter she is?

She’s a good girl. We’d rub her belly or scritch her ears if she wanted. Instead, we bought her gifts. Hopefully she prefers jewelry to inappropriate touching.

***

Kittehs of Italy!

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This pretty girl was in Urbino. She showed us her doorway and asked if one of us might be so kind as to turn the knob and let her in. We did not so she asked the next group. And the next. As we turned out of sight she was talking to a priest about the doorknob situation.

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This cat had the opposite problem. She wanted out. Or for someone to send up some sardines.

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There’s no cat in this picture, just what I assume was a cat door in a palace. It was about a foot tall. I’d have had The Boy stand there for scale but just after I took this I realized that photography was not allowed.

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Car alarms in Perugia are very sophisticatted. And okay with having their picture taken as long as you keep your distance.

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This handsome boy was off duty in the piazza outside a chapel. If only he had been so kind as to tell us that it was his day off. And the chapel’s day off. We waited quite a while for a church that doesn’t open on Monday to open open open.

***
Dogs of Europe! Hey, we love the pooches, too. Not all of them got into the blog because there were dogs walking their owners everywhere we looked.

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The dog of Split.

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The bored dog of Mostar.

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This is not a dog. I thought I had one more dog picture but I don’t. So, since I had to pick a picture…I thought this view in Dubrovnik was particularly special.

Kittehs of Croatia

Confession: For the last two weeks, The Boy and I have been in Europe.

We started in Rome where we were told we would see a whole bunch of cats. There are even calendars and post cards (Photoshopped) about the kitties of Rome. We saw none. Not one.

Croatia, however, had more. And some of them allowed me to take their picture for you. I promised them international fame.

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This is from the top of the city wall around Dubrovnik. My accent in Croat-Meow must be bad – neither of these cats would even look my way.

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This one was trying to understand me.

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This one was off duty. He refused to pose but said he didn’t mind if I took a picture.

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We affronted this lady with our picture taking. This, so soon after someone had the audacity to walk down her stairs without asking, was more than she could bear.

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Each cafe had its own cat. This is the cat in the cafe where we hid from a rainstorm and met some nice people from Seattle.

Due to an ancient agreement that has lasted through a number of governments, Bosnia has a section of coastline that divides Croatia. We took a day trip to Mostar. Bosnian cats, like its people, have a population that is thriving and one that suffers.

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Cafe cats are better off.

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Our final day in Croatia was in Split where we caught the ferry back to Italy.

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This cat was less than impressed by the notion of my international blog.

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The book I’m reading has a one-eyed stripper. Weird coincidence, I think, that we met this mama cat who has lived hard at the ferry terminal. I fed her the ham from our left over sandwich. This is her afterward, giving us serious one-eyed purr face. I wanted to give her a scritch but I didn’t touch any of these cats for fear of creepy crawlies.

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Back in Italy, we saw this handsome gentleman at his basilica in Ravenna. He posed for about 20 women who wanted his picture. Then a woman stepped wrong on the wooden walkway and the sound sent him running.

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In Urbino, just as I was about to lose my mind from the need to scritch, we walked by a theatre and saw a couple with a cat. They saw us taking pictures and let us in. I got a purr of appreciation from him – he could tell I was cat trained and kitten approved.

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But in all my travels for these two weeks, there is one simple truth:

There no scritch like home.

Thunder Fun Facts

Oliver is a grey domestic longhair. BUT his fur is white near his skin and turns dark grey toward the tips. If we gave him a crew cut he would be a white domestic shorthair.

Obi’s hair is black at the roots, and striped all the way to the tip. There is no doubt whose hair has hitched a ride when we pick it off our shirt away from home.

Oliver is a pudding head (nuttin’ but puddin’ up there in that noggin) but he is perfectly adapted for the life he would have had in the feral cats population, had he not been rescued. He has unusually long “saber tooth kitten” teeth. And claws that don’t retract. Also? Really long toe tufts – I know those are good for something. I don’t know that any of his physical attributes would make up for pudding-headedness.

Obi is well adapted to the out and would have zero problem surviving. He has a waterproof coat, big feet for snowshoeing, and he can climb ladders. And open doors. He has also figured out that if he puts a paw on his plate it stays in one place while he eats, while Oliver walks in circles trying to keep up with his breakfast as it travels around the kitchen.

The out can’t have either of them. They are mine.

And they are both PURRfectly adapted for that.