Saturday, November 26, 2011

Closing a chapter

Forcing myself to finish up this has taken me 5 months to do this. Not sure if you read my last post "I'm a marked Woman"  But if you take a quick peek, what I post today will make more's ok I have a cup of tea; I'll wait for ya ;)
okaaaayy...a few days after that post, It was obvious that Mr. Peaches was sick...extremely sick...and when I couldn't stand to watch his suffering any longer, I took him to the vet and he died in my arms. He's buried in our little 'pet cemetery' in the backyard and I made this to mark his spot...RIP Mr. Peaches
I learned a BIG lesson from Mr. Peaches~ Don't run someone off just because they have a bad habit.
Onto the rest of the kiddoes..Momma Kitty and kids....Ebony, Ivory,and Striper
 ...and the other two from her first litter, Mr. Boots and Socks.....
 All are gone but Socks
and Striper
Someone systematically caught them all and I have not seen them in months. I really have no kind words or thoughts for the person who did this. I only know that there is a special place for people who kill animals for no reason other than 'they pooped on your lawn' ...and it's not called heaven.
So now as winter approaches little Striper has no Momma to help show him how to make it through the winter. Both Socks and Striper were the runts of Momma's two litters, so they are REALLY small. I have made a shelter using bales of garden compost and tarps and located it under our dryer vent.

 I lined the inside with one of those reflective space blankets and lots of regular blankies. I have a remote sensor in there to register how warm it is at night. So far we have had a low of 10 degrees and the chilliest I have seen it in the 'kitteh den' is 52 degrees. It eases my heart a bit to know that they have a safe, warm place to sleep at night.

CocoaPuff is ever the Prince of the house. He is not white like this anymore.....

Here here he now...chillaxin in his fav afternnoon spot...he's now mix of dark brown and grey

And on that note, I think it's time for me to do a little chillaxin ;)

Till next time,

Sunday, June 26, 2011

I'm a Marked Woman ;)

Well it has been some time since I had the time to blog, and I wanted to bring you all up to date on the kittehs.
When I last left you Momma Kitty was with childs and was getting close to having more babies. I had made an insulated bed for her under our composter, and after a couple of weeks of her instructing me on making it more suitable, she finally had them on April 17/18th. I had put our outside remote temperature gauge in her bed cause I was so afraid of it being too cold. Even though the outside night temps were in the low 20's her little nursery hidden behind and underneath all those tarps and insulation was never below 62 degrees.
You would have laughed to see me out there every day pulling out that front tarp and adjusting and putting more blankies, rugs, newspapers,and tarps until I (and she) were fully satisfied. She kept them in there for the first couple of weeks and then she moved them a few times til they were old enough to rejoin the rest of the clan back in the neighbors' yard.
As I promised, slowly but surely, everyone is getting spayed/neutered. We have a 'catch and release' program where ferals/strays are caught, fixed, and then the ear is clipped so that everyone knows the cat is fixed. This way we are able to keep the cat population down
Since my last post another stray has been hanging around...

Looked like a 'Peaches" to me---turns out it was a boy; but he answers to the name.  
He is tame, but did something to me that NO animal has ever done....HE SPRAYED ME!!!! EEEWWWWWwwwwww. So freakin gross! It wasn't like a mist either. It was like a straight stream of pee that went through my shirt and bra ( I was sitting on the grass)... So Peaches is no longer welcome in my yard (and this pic was taken before he was fixed-hence no clipped ear). I feel bad for him. He was obviously someone's pet, but they have neglected his fur and he needs a lion cut. His tail and belly are a mass of knotted fur. I don't want to give him too much attention cause he already likes me too much :)
Momma kitty has been fixed...see her clipped ear?

And Little Socks has been fixed (old pic)
Turns out Socks was a girl, and not a boy. The only one I was right about sex wise was Momma...
oh , and Mr. Boots..but you can't miss the huevos on him

Mr. Boots has become psychic and only comes around on weekends or when the vet won't be in the office. I think he knows he's the only one left who hasn't "Been There"

So now you are ALMOST up to date...want to see the new babies???? I must say Momma is very consistent in her baby makin skills. Here's a shot of her last litter-Boots,Socks, and Cocoa
And now look at her latest

Meet Ebony
And Ivory

and Striper

Striper had real bad goopy eyes, but I was able to get steroid drops in them when the babies spent the night with me... and his eyes cleared up totally. Since Momma has them travelling back and forth between yards I made them a little passage through the fence and outlined it in red ribbon.
There such smart kittehs; they figured out the doorway immediately AND everybody knows their name.  I am hoping to make a calendar out of their pics and maybe their cuteness will help support them.

Til next time,

Sunday, April 3, 2011

♪♫♪♫ Someday My Prince Will Come ♪♫♪♫

I don't know when it was that she actually softened my heart... Didn't she live at that trashy house? And didn't they move? Why is she still hanging around here? We don't need her kind mucking up our neighborhood. In truth, I think I may have run her off a few times in the past. Hadn't I seen her take a wide berth around our property when coming down the street? And NOW she's living right next door! Oh groans! Uuugghh! I was out in the yard working when I first caught a glimpse of her kids playing in their backyard. She had been watching me to see if I would react. I went about my business. As the days and weeks progressed she allowed the kids up closer and closer to the fence. I must admit, it was a bright spot in my mornings when they came out to play. But still I didn't want to encourage any interaction. A few weeks later, she approached me at the fence and wanted to introduce her young ones to me. They were absolutely darling ... and how could I resist naming them? Mr. Boots (a tuxedo kitteh with rear knee high white boots): Socks is the runt of the litter and is the size of a 6 week old kitten, even tho they are nearly 1 yr old, and he has white socks on his feet : And CocoaPuff-some kind of siamese mix:

and the proud Momma:She was abandoned when a neighbor moved out just before winter hit us last year. I saw her frequently through the winter, and when spring began unfolding I caught glimpses of her with the babies. I felt bad that she had such a harsh winter after being abandoned. She was extremely thin. I really don't know how she had enough milk for the babies; I couldn't see any teats on her at all. She originally had 4 kittens; 1 died.

One morning after an overnight cold snap, little grey mc fluffykins was sitting out in the next door neighbor's driveway, just a shivering ball. I asked him what was wrong and he just sat there, which was unusual. Normally he would have ran from me as soon as I talked. He just sat looking down the driveway as if waiting for something. I wondered if he was sick. I kept thinking about him all that day and night and wondering...

It weighed heavy on my mind...I kept thinking about how I had been mean to momma kitty. I had shooed her off our yard so much, she usually took a wide berth when passing us now...

And this was why: Her owners had 15+ cats in a tiny 700sq ft house...but that's not all that lived there-2 adults, 6 kids, 2 dogs, a rabbit, a couple of birds + who knows what else! Naturally, the cats couldn't stand it in the house after the first few weeks. I can tell you the smell was horrendous! The cats constantly came over and used our grass and backyard as their litter box. When they moved, they left cats behind to fend for themselves in October. Most disappeared that winter, but Momma kitty hung on.

She stayed in that empty house for weeks until the windows were repaired and it was closed up. Then she took up refuge under a shed, at the neighbor on the opposite side of us. She kept going back all through the winter to see if her owners were coming back for her. When the handyman came to clean and repair the house, she would go running over there to see if her owner was coming back for her. Everytime someone came to look at the house she would run over there and watch hopefully... and then walk back to the shed down trodden when it wasn't anyone for her. Time and time again that happened. Even now as I type this I still cry for her. How sad it must be for her... STILL- I remembered my veternarian's advice about feeding ferals and strays and I DID NOT want these cats even THINKING about my yard. We have a cheap wire fence that barely suffices to keep our girls in (except for Crimson's occassional Houdini acts) I didn't want any trouble from these ferals and even though momma used to be domesticated, her babies were not.

Sorry for rambling on here-after the little grey mc fluffykins died, I didn't want to see kitties just starving to death just because the momma didn't know how to teach them to fend for I used my 'handy grabby thingy'

and put out a couple of cans of tuna through the fence into their yard. Little socks could barely crawl up to the tuna can; they were all famished.

Well...I don't know how long I've been feeding them now; its been months. They have become my 'kiddos'. I first fed them twice a day and got them all healthy again. Then I began cutting them back so that they would become good mousers. I like to think of it as keeping them on retainer. :)

Not only did I begin feeding them, but I would poke my fingers through the fence and start touching them. They were skittish at first, but eventually got used to me stroking them while they ate. Momma kitty was the toughest to crack; she remembered me being mean and even though I was feeding her, I could not be trusted. After the first snow, it became difficult to pass through the fence so I made the feeding place at the corner where our two fences meet. It made it possible for me to feed them at my feet and pet them more freely. Eventually, I have been able to tame all but Socks. He is still skittish about me touching him. But they all know their names.

And now this is the second half to this story:

Cocoa Puff was mauled by a pit bull and for 3 days was unable to walk through the fence to come and eat. He was soooo swollen and and barely able to walk. It weighed on my heart heavy. Everyday I would take food out and each time everyone came to eat, except Cocoa. When he finally healed enough to walk through the fence, I was able to pick him up. His poor little body was so lumpy from all the wounds, but he was hanging in there. And then... he got attacked again; I could hardly stand it. And when he wouldn't come to eat, I took a kitty carrier to the neighbor's backyard and picked him up. I told him I was taking him someplace safe so he could heal.

I sequestered him in the kitchen, and made a warm bed for him I took him to the vet and he got meds. He had several hematomas that were draining. After he healed, I gave him the option of going back to the wild, but he decided he likes having a couple of big sistersAnd living the princely life he always knew he was destined for ;)

Prince Cocoa Puff

I'm still feeding Momma kitty and Cocoa's other brothers. But through all of this insaneness that is my life, I did not get Momma kitty (nor the rest of her clan) to the vet to be fixed, and now she is with childs again. She is nearly ready to birth and has climbed the fence into my back yard to stay away from her boys while she has them. I feel honored that she trusts me and my yard.

I made an insulated bed for her yesterday while she watched. She went and checked it out after I finished, and I am trusting that she found it a suitable nursery. I haven't went out there this morning, but I'll be sure to keep you updated.

Til next time,



Sunday, January 23, 2011

Kickstarter Program

So lately in all the spare time I have, she says with sarcasm dripping off her lips, I have been scouring the web for wire wrapping tutorials.

Last year when I was doing features on shops, I came across a shop on etsy, AtabbycatArts, and a lady who wire wraps her pendants whether they be shell, cameo, or painted stone. And I loved the free formed appearance of her wraps. Here's a couple that caught my eye:
Are these not just beautiful? How could I not be inspired? The Leo rising in me yearns for this lion ♥
Go ahead and click on her pics to go to her shop; she's a wonderfully nice lady who inspired me to want to learn to wire wrap... although she has no idea....until she reads this.
Hi Cat/Na *waves*
So I have been learning and practicing and practicing and learning. Here's a few wraps that I've done with colored craft wire

And here's one with a yellow brass wire wrap, a low cost alternative to the pricier precious metal wires:
I would love to wrap my gemstones with precious metal wires.

and some of my crystals...
I'm just imagining what I can do with these...
But with our fixed income, I cannot afford the extra expense right now. So it got me to thinking....

Last year one of my forum peeps raised $$$ to start a bookbinding business. She used a site called Kickstarter, and as the home page says "A new way to fund and follow creativity"
One is allowed to start/post a project with a $$$ goal and a time limit to reach that goal. Basically people pledge to back your project and if/when the entire amount of your $$ goal is reached by the time limit deadline, then and only then, do the backers pay what they pledged.
So what do your backers get in return for their $$$ help? Well you give them rewards-the more $ they back, the bigger the reward.
I have decided to try and raise the funds I need to begin my precious metal wire wrapping project through Kickstarter. I am thinking I will offer items from my current shops as rewards.
What do you think? I'd love to hear any comments you have.
Until next time
ps- when I have a link to my project page and can ask for backers, I'll be back to post it.......all over the place :)

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Read My Lips--No New Year's Resolutions!

That's right-no resolutions here.

Last year I ran across a New Year's blogpost where the gal said she always made some lofty goal, never lived up to it or was miserable instead, the alternative was suggested to have a motto word to live by. I thought it was a good idea. I started the year with less stress and no expectations to live up to. Last year my word was " Abundance" and boy did I have plenty of times I was reminded. When I was blessed with abundance I gave thanks, when it seemed like abundance would overwhelm me, I reminded myself I asked for it.

Since a motto word was such a success for me, I am choosing to do the same this year. The word I have chosen is " Believe" ...I can hardly wait to see what road this motto leads me through.

So Happy New Year's everyone...what's your motto? I 'believe' mine is already less stressful
See? it's already working ;)

Til next time,

Mr. Clay's update-Hospice has been great! New oxygen equipment has made a difference and he is slowly regaining some mobility. He walks nearly everyday on the treadmill and is looking forward to being able to good outside this spring when things start growing.