Monday, March 29, 2010

Never a Dull Moment... or...Living with Cats

Living in a multiple cat household can be challenging at times. With the newest cat (Oliver) being brought into the herd back in 2006, everyone is more than used to my routine and what is expected of them. With the exception of my occasional travel and the occasional mouse, you would THINK things would run pretty smoothly.

Yet, all it takes is one cat getting into something to throw the whole household into a frenzy. Such was the case last night. The day started well. I had done some more spring clean up of the yard and had finished laundry and a kitchen clean up. I got all the cats in the house by 9:00 (the wind and rain really helped with that) and was hoping for an early night. In fact, I was in bed by 11:00 (quite early for me) and had fallen asleep for about 15 minutes before all hell broke loose.

First I heard things falling over (hmmm, a cat must have gotten into the tv room closet), then I heard what sounded like a bunch of ping pong balls dropping and bouncing (okay, what the HECK is that), then I heard a cat screaming and a whooshing sound with what sounded like something substantial being knocked over. By this time, if there were any cats on the bed with me, they had all jumped off to investigate. As I threw the covers off I yelled out "WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON OUT THERE!!" Complete silence. I'm now standing by the side of my bed wondering if I should check it out now or just wait until morning to see what the damage is. Since I've had a few recent mouse experiences I decide to check it out in case that is what all the fuss is about. I stomp into the tv room, look around and take a moment to try and figure out what happened.

What I can make out is that Chunky Lisa opened the closet door and while trying to jump up on the boxes, pulled them down instead. One of the boxes had my miniature Christmas ornaments, that included a bunch of tiny red glass balls that were now scattered all over the floor (ahh, the ping pong ball sound), with other cats now joining in batting the balls around. Chunky Lisa was up straddling the back of a chair with the look of a crazed animal. Somehow she had gotten her head through the handles of a large red plastic bag from Target that now was draped across her back like Superman's cape. (Okay, that accounts for the scream and whooshing sound.) She must have been frantically running around trying to get rid of her "cape" and in doing so knocked over the table lamp.

Stifling a laugh I quietly yet quickly walked over to Lisa who looked like she was about to bolt, removed her cape, picked up the glass ornaments, closed the closet door and went back to bed.

And people wonder why I have such dark circles under my eyes...

Without any visual proof, I vehemently deny the allegations about me in the above story (although the red plastic cape WAS pretty cool)!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Earth Hour

Wow, it looks like I have figured out how to post a video again! Huzzah!

Earth Hour is this Saturday. Please check out this video and join me in turning off your lights this Saturday, March 27 at 8:30 pm. I did it last year and while it's not so much fun doing it when you live alone, it was fun watching my neighborhood go dark. A number of us went out on our front porches and we all started gabbing away and before you knew it the hour was up!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Sorry Ollie!

I guess it was bound to happen. With the wonderful weather we've been having the inside/outside kitties are spending more and more time outside. I still like to have them in the house overnight though, as referenced a couple of posts back.
Last night was a pretty warm night. Temps around 11:00 were still in the 60s. I was pretty tired having worked in the yard a bit. I got every cat inside and went to bed. This morning I woke to a cat-filled bed. It seemed like every cat was up on the bed and wanting to be cuddled and talked to. When I finally was able to extricate myself from all that fur and started walking around turning off the outside lights, I did a quick head count and kept thinking to myself "now where's Ollie?" He's a small, skinny fellow that can curl himself up pretty much anywhere but I couldn't find him. I was up before the sun and opened the front door and there he was, pawing at the storm door and crying to be let in.
Aww, I'm so sorry Ollie. I thought I had everyone in last night. Maybe this is a reminder that when I call you to come in and say this is the "last call", you will heed my words. Then again, maybe not.

Here he is curled up on my pillow. I took this photo a couple of minutes ago. When he came in he went right to the food bowl, then jumped up on my bed and has been there ever since. (Can you see his left clipped ear? He obviously got caught up in a feral colony at some point and was trapped, neutered and released. How he made it to my house is anyone's guess.)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Observing Two Anniversaries

What is the longest you ever stayed at one job? Would you ever think you could stay in one job for 20 years? Me neither. Yet, last Friday, March 12, marked my 20th anniversary at my association. I've seen board members come and go, staff come and go and now I will be going on my third Executive Director as my current boss announced in December he was leaving as of June 30th.
They had a quiet celebration for me. So quiet that, wait, they didn't have ANY celebration for me! Was I a bit peeved--yes. On one hand I could understand it as my boss was getting ready for yet another overseas trip and was already working one day a week at his new job. Plus our HR director has been away on Grand Jury duty since the beginning of February and she is the one who usually keeps track of such things. Still....

A board member was in town that day going to another conference and she stopped by to say hello. She is cycling off the board this year and was talking about how she was going to miss everyone. When she started talking about how long I had been at my association I quietly said, "well, as a matter of fact, today is my 20th anniversary". She started making a big fuss and invited me out for a drink which turned into a wonderful dinner and gab fest, all "off the record" of course!

Word must have gotten round to our HR director as I received these beautiful flowers yesterday

(Pay no attention to the mess behind the flowers)

I particularly like the mini orchid sprigs with the Spanish dancers!

Since I had my camera out I thought I'd show you my little cat and elephant tchotzkes I keep at my office.

Including a close up of a button my niece Meagan found for me. I LOVE IT (tee hee).

Now the next anniversary. Today marks the second anniversary of my sweet and gentle Butterball's death. I find it truly amazing how much I STILL miss him. Possumlady Place is again filled with laughter and little and not so little cat feet, purrs, trills and just general cat craziness. But, I still ache for Butterball, my gentle giant, my main man, my Gandhi of cats.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Really...You Shouldn't Have

The weather has finally started warming up yet there are still a few mounds of snow around as painful reminders of the Blizzards of February 2010!! The inside/outside kitties are getting restless with all the time indoors so I let them out to burn off some energy when I come home from work. Just like with children, I start calling them to round them up about an hour before they need to come back in and I go to bed.
Around 10:00 last night I made my first call out on the front porch. I could see two cat silhouettes racing around each other. Hmm, looks like something's up. Then, Oliver struts up the sidewalk and starts prancing up the front porch steps trilling away with a little mouse in his mouth. Oh no, I say, keep that little mousey down there. Oliver dutifully marches back down the steps and drops the little mouse. Little mouse then scampers off into the undergrowth. Oliver watches it for a few seconds then starts after it again. Well, that's enough excitement for me, I think to myself as I go back inside.
It's 11:00 and I'm all ready for bed. I look out the storm door onto the front porch and see Oliver sitting there looking pleased as punch and ready to come in. Next to him is the little mousey, now deceased. Oh, thanks very much Oliver. I open the door and Oliver starts coming in, stops, turns and picks up the mouse. I'm sorry Oliver, mousey stays outside. I'm not sure if it was my tone or not, but Oliver again drops the mouse and races inside. I then call Tobey and he runs up the porch steps, stops dead in his tracks and slowly walks up to the mouse. He sniffs it and looks up at me expectantly. I shake my head, no Tobey, mousey stays outside. Tobey then saunters inside while I say a little prayer for said mousey then close up for the night and go to bed.