10 January 2012

New Additions

Just a note - I promise I will stop playing with the blog design! I think I have it about where I want it...

You may have noticed on yesterday's post that I had a couple of "helpers" in my kitchen that had a lot more fur than my children usually do. If you have been a reader of this blog for the last year, you may have seen the mentions of the passing of both of my cats last winter. Juniper was 16, my little girl I raised since she was a kitten. She had a growth under her leg that she was able to fight for several years before succumbing to it. Mookie was almost 20, my shelter cat - my "first child". We had been together since college, in a relationship longer than any other besides immediate family. My daughter took him on as her own the last couple of years, and she was as devastated as I when it was finally time to say goodbye.

I knew I needed a hiatus from pets. Almost half my life as a caretaker, and I admit it was nice to not deal with vets, litter boxes and hairballs for a long time. But I missed having pets. I was raised in a home with pets: cats, dogs, parakeets, hamsters and rabbits have all passed through the doors of my family home at one time or another. I admit to looking at the local shelters websites every so often, just to see what was available. Every time I began to lean towards "maybe", I weighed the expense and the time - and the niblets' clamoring for a dog, which I am still not ready for now - and was able to keep excuses coming up.

Then in mid-December I was doing my usual perusal and found a listing for a Siamese at a shelter near where my parents live. He was gorgeous, a couple of years old, and just staring into the camera like he owned it. I would stare at the listing, then go on my merry way. Then checked the next day, and the next. Then I thought I would just call to see if he was still available. If not, no harm.

He wasn't. But of course by then any willpower I had for ignoring my inner voice was gone, and I knew that I had to go look (just look, I swear, yeah right) at the cats at the shelter over the holidays. Since this is a no-kill shelter, I knew that there would be so many more than listed on the website. So, after Christmas my girlfriend and I traveled to the shelter to "look". There were so many cats. Hundreds. We became landing pads at times, and it was a petting zoo and playtime for those around. The volunteers were wonderful, and I know it is a full-time job to house and care for these animals. after about an hour and checking out some specific cats, I ended up with this kitten settled into my arms, purring like a motor. White with a couple black hairs on the top of his head. I knew this boy was it, however I did not like the thought of a solitary cat, and especially at his age a playmate would be better. While talking about this I ended up feeling a weight land on my back and head over my shoulder. A young tortiseshell kitten had come to join the party.

When I inquired about the two, it turned out they were cage mates, siblings in caretaking, if not blood. The male was the only one left from his litter, even his mother had been adopted. The female's sister was adopted the previous week. If the Universe wasn't clear before - She was now.

Look at me!

Renamed for two of my favorite gemstones, Jasper (eases stress) and Jade (confidence & protection) have made themselves quite at home. A holiday surprise for the niblets, they are pleased to have young cats in the house that enjoy both play and sleep, and I feel like a piece of my heart has healed with these new additions.

Are you finished yet?

When they aren't knocking over plants and climbing on the table, that is.