Climber April 5, 2009
A lot has been going on lately, not all of it good, but it’s going to take me some time before I can write about everything and do it justice. In the meantime, take a look at what Forrest has been up to. And I mean “up” in the most literal sense of the word.
The Secret March 9, 2009
On Saturday, I discovered The Secret.
It rocked my world. It changed my life. It allowed me to get through the days without frustration and exasperation. In peace.
It has nothing to do with the book.
For The Secret is as simple as the air around us. Fresh, outside, almost spring air.
When Forrest goes outside for a few minutes, it zonks him out for the rest of the day.
Case in point:
Yes, I know we’re the crazy cat people dragging their feline around on a leash. I had bought the harness and leash last fall, thinking it would calm Forrest down a little if he could go out and run around for awhile. It was a little too heavy for him back then, and he was more interested in playing with the leash than he was in going outside.
Now that he’s grown a little a lot, I figured it was time to try again. He loved it. Although he was a little hesitant at first, he quickly realized that he was somewhat free and could walk around the deck and backyard. He had a great time sniffing at things, chewing on grass (what there is of it), and watching birds. We went out three times over the weekend, and I swear by Sunday night he understood that seeing his leash meant that he got to go outside. I think he’s part dog.
And when he passed out each time afterwards, it wasn’t his usual 20 minute catnap. He was out for HOURS! Mike and I could eat without fighting him for our food, we could watch TV without scremaing at him to leave Guinness alone. It was heaven.
Now I just need the weather to cooperate so that we can make this a ritual every evening!
Six months February 1, 2009
At the beginning of August, he was this:
Now, he’s THIS:
(Please ignore Mike’s “playoff beard”. I know I certainly am.)
He’s the same height as Guinness, although leaner. He’s still quite a character. Definitely a kitten in spirit, if not in size. The declawing and neutering only slowed him down for a few days, and didn’t calm him down at all. He’s a hunter–he hides and pounces, catches his prey (usually a cat toy), and then hides it in one of Mike’s shoes. He’s also a thief. There are things missing from the house that Forrest has hidden that we just can’t seem to find, like Mike’s nose hair trimmers. Seriously.
Because of Forrest, we know not to put toilet paper on the holder,
to put breakables up high,
to check the dryer carefully before turning it on,
and to duck when you turn the water on, because he’s sure to come bounding from the furthest part of the house to see what’s going on.
Some of his hobbies include:
- eating your food when you turn your back
- pulling the strings out of drawstring pants and carrying them around the house
- biting toes
- watching snowflakes and trying to catch them (even though they’re on the other side of the glass)
- checking to see if the sink is clean and licking it if it’s not
- slamming his body against the shower door while I’m in there, then waiting until I open the door when I’m getting out and playing in the water. He then lays on the bathroom rug and stretches out, enjoying the heat. We call it his “sauna”.
His favorite foods include:
- anything you’re eating at the moment. Anything.
- soups–split pea, potato and bacon, bean
- cereal, preferably soaked in milk. Cheerios are a big hit.
- bread. We’ve learned not to leave a loaf of bread on the counter because he’ll bite through the bag.
- as a last resort, Friskes.
We tried so hard to train him to stay off of the island and counters, but he’s untrainable. He’ll jump back up just as many times as you put him down. He was afraid of the spray bottle for about 3 seconds before he learned to hold his ground and turn his face to the stream of water, completely unfazed. When we have people over, we have to move the food and litter box into our bathroom and shut the bedroom door. It’s just a matter of time before he figures out that our door doesn’t latch and if he would throw himself against it, it would probably bounce open.
Sometimes I think he’s the smartest cat ever. Other times I think he’s as dumb as dirt. The one thing I do know is that he’s definitely a cutie–
Catching up November 1, 2008
The week before last, I did something I never did before. I took a week of vacation time . . .without going on vacation. The last time I even took a whole week of vacation was three summers ago when we went to the Outer Banks with Mike’s family. The time before that was a trip to Aruba in 2003. The only other week off was our honeymoon–9 years ago. All of our vacation time has been long weekends or centered around a holiday. I needed a break.
My one goal was to get our bedroom torn apart, painted, put back together, and the curtains (that I bought 2 years ago!) hung. I spent all of Monday and Tuesday doing just that.
Notice my little helper. I’ve been wanting to paint our bedroom for a long time, but knew that it would be a pain–our furniture is heavy. Oh, and our bedroom is usually a mess. It was nice not to have to cram it into a weekend and to know that I could take my time.
The rest of the week was fairly uneventful. I had a few other little projects I wanted to get done, which I did, and a few larger projects that I wanted to get done that I blew off in favor of curling up in a chair to read. It was a relaxing week overall, and I enjoyed every minute of it. I might end up taking a week off every year just to do stuff around the house.
That Friday night, Mike, my sister-in-law JLo, and I piled in the car and headed to Virginia to celebrate our niece’s sixth birthday. On Saturday, we ventured out into the drizzly rain to Hollywood Cemetery to take pictures for a school project that JLo was working on.
Afterwards, we went out for lunch to Richbrau, a brewpub and restaurant. By the time we finished eating, it was pouring down rain, so we headed back to the house to celebrate LiLo’s 6th birthday with homemade lasagna and an Oreo pie.
We headed back to Pittsburgh on Sunday, and by the time we got home, I had a cold. This week flew by, getting back into the swing of things at work and trying to shake off this cold. Thursday night, Mike decided he wanted to carve a pumpkin. Forrest helped.
Last night was our neighborhood trick-or-treat, and the weather cooperated for once. We set up a table at the end of the driveway with the jack-o-lantern and candy, and spent most of the time catching up with neighbors.
Mike’s roasting pumpkin seeds as I type this, waiting on the garage door repairman to come. We’re both anxious to pick up Forrest at the vet. He came through the surgery without a hitch and had his stitches removed this morning. We should have clearance to go him around noon. The house has been so quiet without him–we can’t wait to have him back at home!
He’ll have the “Balls and Claws” special, please. October 31, 2008
Mike dropped Forrest off at the vet this morning to get his vaccines (since he was too sickly with ringworm to get them done last time), get neutered, and also declawed.
That process that I’m so against, that’s so inhumane and cruel.
But I’m at my wit’s end. He’s aggressive and getting more so each day. Mike and I can fend him off (most of the time), but it’s taking it’s toll on our other cat, Guinness, who now sleeps with one eye open. Forrest isn’t a mean cat, he just wants to play. But he takes it too far and doesn’t know when to stop. He attacks Guinness relentlessly, even sinking his teeth into her neck. The teeth we can’t do anything about, but the claws . . .I’m finally ready to admit they have to go.
We’ve been pretty good about keeping the Soft Claws on him, but they’re not enough. The other night he worked his way under our leather rocker/recliner and tried to claw his way out from the inside. It’s like our chair was possessed by an alien–he’s one strong little cat. If we would have let him keep going, he would have punched through the leather despite having the Soft Claws on.
But still, I’m feeling guilty and second-guessing our decision to have this done. We can’t pick him up until tomorrow, so tonight (after trick-or-treat!) is going to be rough. Without Forrest, our house will be quiet and peaceful. Giving me even more time to wonder if we did the right thing.
Maybe I’ll spend that time playing catch-up and writing a long rambling post about my adventures over the past few weeks. . . .