Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Naughty Kitty

I was thinking last night, that I have never talked about my furry children here.

We have 3 of them, and we have had as many as 4 at once. Living. In our house.

Some people have coined me as the crazy cat lady. You know, because I am only slightly obsessed with these furry creatures. They have always fascinated me.

It all started when I was about 3 years old. We went to the pet shop and I had the chance to pick out any cat that I wanted. I was drawn to the furriest one in the whole place. We called him Smokey, and he lived until he was 16. He was the coolest cat ever. He would just lay on his back and let you rub him with your feet. He loved my sisters and I. Cats know when you are 'good people'. We went on to have many more cats; Buddy, Peanut, Muffin---

When I was in college, I decided that it was time to add another cat to my life. This time, it would be my companion only. A pet that I was solely responsible for. Off to the humane society I went and so came Cleo into my life.

Cleo is the naughtiest kitty of all. She is close to 10 now, and starting to act out a little bit. She liked being the only cat in our household, and she is eternally punishing us for breaking that code. She jumps on the bed in the morning, purposely waking us up. She needs to constantly be touching you, which in turn means you are likely to get tripped by her in the hallway. She weaves in and out of your legs, and meows incessantly. She really does know how to push our buttons. But, she is also so very sweet at times. She loves children, even though I fear for the day that we have one of our own. She loves people in general. Maybe she just loves the attention, I don't know. But she is a lover of sorts. Always on her terms, though. She also knows how to pose for the camera, as evidenced above.

We decided together, when I was living in my first apartment out of college, that we needed an addition to the cat family. Curtis wanted a cat that had energy! spunk! and overall craziness! I wanted a more mellow soul, someone that I knew would get along with Cleo. So, we went to the pet store and found an adorable cat named Max. Max had everything that Curtis wanted in a cat, but I have to be honest and say I wasn't totally sold on a male cat. Before we went to the pet store, we had made a trip to Target. I had left something in the cart in the parking lot, and Curtis scurried off to retrieve it, while I started the paperwork on Max. 2 minutes after he left, the adoption assistant comes and tells me that someone is already in the process of adopting Max, and that I needed to choose another cat. Without Curtis there to help me, I browsed the cages, in a bit of a panic, because I knew how much he wanted Max. Then I saw this little black furball in the corner of the cage. She meowed right at me, walked over, and stuck her tongue out to lick my finger. I immediately fell in love. We called her Sylvia.

Sylvie is a sweet soul. She is a total cuddle bug and reminds me so much of old Smokey. She has his demeanor, his long, black hair, and some days I think she is Smokey reincarnated. She loves to sleep right next to my head and she is very mischievous. We often find her causing the most trouble, discreetly. She very seldom gets caught being naughty and when she does she is so stealth about it. Like 'hey, what did I do?' She meows and talks back to you when you talk to her. She eats people food more than the other two. Eggs and french fries are her preferred cuisine.I hate picking favorites, but she is my self-professed favorite of the bunch.

Daisy came next. See below.

And then came Sadie. Actually, Sadie was a part of a 2-for-1 special at the local cat shelter. The vet that runs the place said we could take two if we felt we could handle it. I was all about having two more cats, while Curtis was a bit skeptical. We ended up bringing home Sadie along with another cat, Jipsee. (see below) Sadie is the independent one. When she came to us, she was very skinny. She is a meek kitty, who I am sure got pushed around a lot by the cats at the shelter. She immediately started to take charge in our house. She is always the first to be fed
(and it shows!! She has gained 10 lbs living with us.), and she takes no shit from her sisters. She is also the Daddy's girl of the bunch. Whenever Curtis leaves a room, Sadie follows him. When the alarm goes off in the morning, she is next to him in bed. Her favorite spot is nestled next to him in the corner of the couch. She also has the tiniest of meows for being such a large kitty. It's so minute, you can barely hear her. We have aptly nicknamed her 'squeak' because that is what she sounds like! She also lays on the heat vents in the Winter. She sprawls all 20 lbs of her fat belly over the vent, so she can suck up all that heat. Hey, she likes to be warm, I guess.

There were two other kitties that we only had a short time with. Our cat, Daisy, a brown and black tortie was such a sweet thing. She got along so well with Cleo and Sylvia. We were devastated when we had to put her down 1 week before our wedding in 2004. Daisy's passing is what spurred the adoption of Jipsee and Sadie.

Then tragedy struck again. Jipsee, our runt...the gray cat of the bunch, with lungs that you could hear from so far away. She was such a sweet little thing. Always catching a ray of sunshine on the porch. She came down with the same symptoms that had plagued Daisy. We found out that we had coronavirus in our house. One of our older cats is likely the culprit, and it remains dormant in them, while it infects younger cats. It was devastating news, but we were so glad that they were no longer suffering. This also leaves us unable to adopt another cat until the others are gone. Which Curtis is so thankful for. I honestly think I could have 10 cats, all at once. See, I am the crazy cat lady.

When we were in Key West a few weeks ago, I actually insisted that we return to the Hemingway house for a second time so that I could hang out with the cats. Sometimes they make us crazy. Crazy in love, or just plain crazy, I don't know. But, they are like my children. I love them so much, and they bring continuous joy to our household. Forever will I be the crazy cat lady!


Meg P. said...

Cute post Em. I'm just now realizing that I can post comments without signing up on here (cool)
Someday if you and I are old and gray and if god forbid Curtis and Brad are no longer with us - I will totally be your crazy cat lady room mate. I am a lover of all things kitty cat as well. =)

apt said...

Companion animals are wonderful. I'm more of a dog person, but I've had feline short term room mates as well.
You and your kitties, past and present are fortunate to be in each others lives.

Melissa A. said...

What a nice tribute to your kitties!

Shana said...

What a great post Em! As you know I'm a crazy cat lady as well! When we go on vacation I have to find the nearest pet store so I can get a kitty fix! :o) I loved reading about your cat clan. They sound just as awesome as mine!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this wonderful insight on your family. I love my cats as well. Even though one of them knocked over the Christmas tree today which included antique ornaments (like from 1976 ;)) that are now smashed. I agree furry family members with distinct personalities. hgh