Category Archives: Cats

The Story of Jack

As you know from reading this blog, Obi and Oliver were very close. We’ve always known that Obi would miss his brother when he was gone. We have also known, from his records at the shelter when he was adopted, that he wasn’t cut out to be an only cat.

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But, with the move and some travel and the loss of Oliver, we didn’t want to pile on a new cat right away. So we waited. As we settled into the new house it was obvious that Obi was lonely. It was time.

I searched the local shelter online during the week and found a couple who seemed promising, based on their limited listings. We were looking for a young adult cat, probably a male. Then, on Saturday, we packed up the whole family and headed out to pick our next family member.

We looked at all the cats. Wandered room to room. No one really clicked. But then I asked a passing volunteer about a cat I’d had a good feeling about online: Blaze. We were directed to the communal cat room behind us – a good sign that he was housed with other cats. We looked at each cat in the room through the glass. None of them was Blaze. Then a tube on the floor moved. And out strolled a grey cat.

He looked at me. He looked at The Boy. Then he saw Buddy. And he walked up to the glass and tried to hug him. It was Blaze. When he saw Okay he attempted a double hug.

We quickly found a volunteer and arranged to meet Blaze in person.

From the second he hopped out of the carrier, Blaze had us. He played with Buddy. He checked out Okay in her carrier. He jumped into The Boy’s lap and demanded pets. We already knew he was good with other cats. He proved he would be good with kids when he didn’t bat an eye at Buddy accidentally smacking him with the door of the metal carrier and then letting it slam loudly into the wall of the cage.

Soon he was ours.

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He and Obi were excited to meet each other. We let them meet through glass doors, giving them something in common immediately – a shared hatred of closed doors. When they were allowed to meet there were just a couple hours of “I think we’re playing…are we playing?” Then we all breathed deeply and started to enjoy life with two cats, as is meant to be.

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We’d intended to keep his name, Blaze, for lack of any other ideas. But my sleep deprived brain kept calling him Jack. And it fits him well.

Over the months, Jack has moved right in and made a place for himself. Everywhere. He is a pushy little bowling ball of a cat, in the middle of everything. He throws himself onto feet as people walk across the room. He dives into Buddy’s bed when I go to wake him up in the morning. And he has decided that taking care of Okay is his personal mission. Even if she is a little grabby. That includes lying on top of her and purring furiously while she’s in her car seat and during night time feedings.

We say “hi, Jack,” in an exasperated tone, several times an hour.

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Jack is heavy enough to Thunder all on his own. You can hear him jump off of things from across the house. So an Obi and Jack Thunder makes quite a ruckus. And the Thunder rolls all. day. long.

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Jack is grey and loves to Thunder and he’s dumber than a box of rocks, but he has not replaced Oliver in our hearts. He and Obi don’t snuggle like the brown kitten did with his fluffy older brother. I, too, have lost my night time snugglebuddy. But, at 4 a.m., Obi visits me and we have a short cuddle. And we’re whole…for five minutes before Obi can’t stand people snuggles anymore.

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And we love Jack more every day. He’s a good boy.

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The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

After setting up the tree this year, I asked my friends on Facebook to place their bets.

The bets were all about how long Squeak would allow the tree to stand. How long the ornaments would stay on. Whether he would climb it. But the only thing Squeak has done is turn the lights on (and off and on and off and on and off and on and off and on and off and on and off and on and off and on and off and…).

People forgot all about Kitten Thunder. And that this tree is for Obi.

Oliver was content to watch. And duck the halls, courtesy of a friendly toddler.

Eventually, even the tree was tired and we all took a nap.

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Man Stuff with Style

Oliver and I were on the couch this morning when Obi came up, leading The Boy to the belly rubbing rug. The Boy said “show your girl why you aren’t allowed to help with Man Stuff.”

Obi was not interested in showing me. He wanted his belly rubbed.

But The Boy borrowed my camera so he could document the issue.

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Seems the brown kitten rubbed against a door frame, claiming it in the name of Obi, just seconds after The Boy painted it.

While he looked awesome with frosted tips, I used the brush and a wet paper towel to remove the paint. And Oliver have him a bath.

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We wrapped presents today. Although Kitten Thunder is kind of mad about their boxes being filled with things that are not for them and jammed under their tree, Oliver thinks this is the best bag ever.

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Sew Fun

I’ve been quilting all week. I’m tired of it so Kitten Thunder offered to help.

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The problem is that Oliver had no legs.

And Obi prefers the sewing machine when it’s quiet and nothing is bobbing around.
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I’m practically on my own here.

The Farm Report

It’s been a while since we checked in on the farm and there have been many changes. For one thing, the farmer sold some of his land to the railroad and they built a storage facility.

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After they started building, the farmer got to thinking.

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He’s a little concerned about the facility. Seems they forgot to take into account the location of his homestead, the original family farmhouse, between the storage building and the tracks. How are they planning to get vehicles up to those bay doors?

As always, though, something else presents itself to distract him from these small worries.

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There’s always something bigger.

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Much, much bigger.

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Disco Kitten

Last year during the family Christmas shopping trip, I bought myself a pretty teal shirt covered in clear sequins. It seemed to be a perfect amount of festive and I was really excited about it.

Then I wore it.

Before noon it had rubbed sore spots on my arms. By the end of the work day I couldn’t wait to take it off. I’m pretty sure I did take it off the second the door closed behind me.

This shirt has been in my closet for a year. It has survived several rounds of culling because it is so pretty, even though looking at it made me sad because I was never going to wear it again.

But then! This week I realized that I could protect my arms and cover the more offending sequins if I wear a cardigan over the shirt. And so I did. Plenty of sparkle, no road rash.

And there’s an extra, unanticipated benefit.

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Three solid hours of sparkle reflection entertainment for the brown kitten. By the time the sun stopped coming in my office window and the light show was over, Obi was ready for a nap.

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His brother was happy to oblige.

A Plea From Obi

Dear people of the world,

We’ve had a very disturbing day. The Boy continues his efforts to ruin the laundry room. I even hid up in the ceiling to show him how valuable the space was in case there were ever intruders. But, after he closed up the ceiling with me in it, he seemed more irritated by my hiding than impressed. He took the piece of ceiling out and took me up to The Girl. I was held captive until he finished closing up all my hidey holes.

Rude.

Then The Girl started cleaning. And not normal cleaning. It’s Company is Coming cleaning. But even worse than usual. She went crazy and started throwing out things we need.

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Oliver and I tried to talk some sense into her. Yes, we have not used the giant bag of tissue paper for several months. Yes, someone peed in it. But we got this bag as part of the celebration when we officially adopted The Boy. We got his last name and this awesome bag. Why would you ever throw this out? I mean, have you seen our last name? That was NOT the best part of the deal – it takes The Girl three minutes to scold us by our full names now.

She also downgraded our fortress to two boxes and one piece of packing paper. Then she took the two shopping bags out of my fort and folded the sheet so it only takes up half as much room.

Ultra rude.

She posted the evidence of her wrongdoing, the above picture, on Facebook. Our Aunt Staci tried to make light of our plight by assuring us that they would be doing lots of shopping while they are here next weekend. They will bring us new bags.

This is stupid. Why would we settle for new bags when we could have MORE bags? It’s not like we’re running out of room.

But then it hit me. Aunt Staci actually believes this was a reasonable statement on her part. My poor cousins! While I have never met Cousins Puck and Bo, they deserve better than a family that limits their access to boxes and bags.

It really makes you think. No matter how bad your life is, things can always be worse.

Back to the plea. As soon as The Girl sat down, I jumped into her lap as a delaying tactic.

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I can’t hold out forever. Bring tuna.