It would be rude not to.
Oliver started training his people kitten early but was disappointed at first. It seemed that Squeak was not going to be the talented petter that The Girl is.
But he has not given up. Slowly, Squeak is gaining the dexterity and strength it takes to become an excellent scritcher.
Last night I sat on the floor in the kitchen with Squeak while The Boy fixed dinner. Oliver decided this was a good time for another lesson. He approached an outstretched hand carefully and rubbed his chin over it.
Then, having encountered none of the resistance or fingernails needed to make a good chin scritch, he tried something different. He shoved his head under the outstretched hand.
And it happened. The fingers flexed. A light squeeze occurred.
A pleased grey kitten walked under the outstretched hand.
And it happened. The fingers flexed. A light squeeze occurred. The tiny hand tightened to a fist… And came away with a tuft of soft grey fur.
Oliver was less pleased.
The lesson was over.
Obi came by for his pet from the people kitten. He shoved his head under the outstretched hand and started walking.
And it happened. Fingers flexed. A light squeeze occurred. And a brown kitten sidestepped out of reached.
He’s already learned that lesson.
Obi is coming off his Prozac and it’s making him more playful than ever. Unfortunately, he and Squeak still don’t agree on how to play with toys.
So, later in the day, we were hopeful that Oliver would play with his brother. We asked him to go be unsuspecting.
Oliver agreed and went to lie down. And he just laid there.
No matter what Obi did.
“There’s a difference,” The Boy told Oli, “between unsuspecting and oblivious.”
Hello peoples of the internets! Obi here.
Sometimes I feel like The Boy sold me a bill of goods with Squeak. He still doesn’t Thunder with me like they said he would.
He doesn’t even know how to play with the cool toys The Girl bought for us.
But he looks to me for advice. And he is getting better.
And he’s good for snuggling… He doesn’t think he needs to hug or kiss me like The Girl does.
And at I don’t have to do his laundry because Oliver volunteered. And The Boy finished it when my brother was done.
There’s lots of things you say you’ll do, or never do, as a parent before you have kids. I’ve never been too judgy of parents but I did have a list of things I liked and didn’t like.
Amongst the didn’t likes: plastic light up noisy toys. I thought there were plenty of other options.
And that lasted right up until we received a Glo Worm. That artificial music and light up face will knock Squeak right out of a fit.
He might not be happy, but he’ll forget why he was crying.
Babies, it turns out, really like those sounds an lights. And moms really like things that hold a baby’s attention.
Also, Squeak needs more toys as he’s staying awake for longer stretches. Maybe this isn’t for him – he and Obi might be perfectly happy going back to the same play mat all day – but his parents need different things to do.
And so did the kittehs, it seems.
It’s about time I got them some new toys.
Look, kid. I’m happy to share My Girl with you.
But truthfully, I prefer when the lap is mine.
What are you doing on this mat, Squeak?
Batting at the swingy toys, eh?
After much consideration, I’ve decided you’re doing it wrong.
Let the master show you how it’s done.
Every time company comes, Obi helps make the bed.
This summer, Kitten Thunder has been visited by all their grandpeople. Okay, maybe it was Squeak that inspired the visits. But, being good cat people, they all spent time with the kittehs as well.
The grandpeople on The Girl’s side of the family have been to the house a lot in Kitten Thunder’s lifetimes. Grandpaw knows exactly how to squeeze Oliver’s head to compress the pudding. Grandmaow used to feed them in the morning when she visited – but since Squeak’s arrival The Girl gets up to feed them even earlier than Grandmaow is up. She’s also a good scritcher.
Grandpaw on The Boy’s side has been here less so his petting style is unfamiliar. He thumped Oliver on the side, which was alarming. Then really nice.
Nana stayed for two weeks, which won her high honors. She was allowed to sit under Oliver while he took a bath once. And Obi let her play with his toys.
She tried to play with Oliver, who was unimpressed. The Girl told her the woeful tale of the milk ring. If you don’t know about how Albertsons and the makers of milk broke his heart, read about it here.
Unable to replenish his supply of milk rings, Oliver was excited to find one this summer after Cindy cleaned the house. He carried it with him from room to room. It made him so happy.
Nana wanted him to be more happy.
Today we received this in the mail.
The Girl says cats in Japan say NyaNya instead of meow. Maybe they’re really calling for one of their favorite peoples. It’s pretty great to have a Nana.
Oliver decided it is time for Squeak to learn how to be a good people. It’s important to start training early. I myself had casual training as a child with Tika and Stasha. It began in earnest with Poco.
I’m proud to be able to say I’m tortie trained and kitten approved.
Lesson one is a biggie: how to give good pets. How to scritch. How to rub a kitteh the right way.
Oliver arrived at my side and considered his subject. He watched Squeak’s tiny fist, held out from his body.
And the grey kitten stretched out his face. He ran his chin over the baby fist.
I tried to help. I repositioned Squeak and tried to put his hand on Oliver’s head.
Unfortunately, the lesson didn’t go very far. Kittens aren’t as cool as ceiling fans.
Lesson cancelled. For now.