Thursday, September 22, 2011

More Old News

Way back in August during our Connecticut visits we had the opportunity to visit this lovely place with Don's mom and the kids. It was the perfect little "farm" experience for Amy and William.

Highlights included holding a bunny...

Feeding a very eager goat, and some equally-eager ducks and chickens...

And holding/petting a guinea hen chick...

William was so super-gentle about this, and kept looking up at the Mrs. Farmer as if to say, "am I doing this right?"

After the petting zoo portion of the morning we walked through the woods on the "Gnome Trail" on a clever little scavenger hunt. Good fun all around.

In more recent news, I sewed a really cute dress for Amy's baby doll today - at her request. Every time I sit down at the sewing machine I enjoy it so thoroughly that I wonder what in the world is wrong with me that I don't simply make more time for sewing. Sigh.

Otherwise my Big Project these days is packing a few boxes when I can and making all sorts of mental lists for what needs to be done once moving prep kicks into high gear in October. We've got one more little trip coming up and then it will be full steam ahead. Expect some Maryland reflections in the coming weeks as we prepare to leave the home where my kids have spent nearly their whole lives so far. Big Stuff!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Thoughts on Fostering

Today was a big day in the crazy-cat-lady realm. I feel rather emotionally exhausted, interestingly not unlike how I felt on THE September 11th... though obviously under much different circumstances.

Last week someone put in an application to adopt Garfield, one of the three brothers who we have been fostering since early July. All week long I knew he would be going to his new home today (and therefore took a lot of pictures). I did not know that the man adopting him would also decide to take his brother Harley, too (and therefore I did not get any recent pictures of Harley). They are off to the home of a single father with two adolescent boys and a boxer puppy. All us crazy cat ladies at Feral Cat Rescue were slightly uneasy at first, because frankly, not many men want to adopt cats. I personally stewed over this all week, hoping and praying that this would be a good and safe home for these sweetest of sweet cats.

Anyway, after meeting this man and his boys at Petco this morning we were all assured that this would be a good home for Garfield, and even happier when he agreed to take one of his brothers, too. Now there is my peace of mind knowing that the kittens will have each other in yet another new environment and have feline companionship while the house is empty during the day. It's all good.

And of course, this left me in the situation that I have been pondering for weeks - if two get adopted, will I keep the third? And the answer is, yes! I signed the papers and brought Humphrey home to stay. He seems a little lonesome for his brothers but I must remind myself that he is a cat and it does no good to project my human emotions onto him. He is comfortable and loved (especially by Amy who has favored him all along because he tolerates being picked up), and that is really all that matters to a cat. For them there is no past and no future; they just live in the present and are happy there.

So, fostering kittens... emotionally draining because I get attached. How can you not when you have this handsome little silent-meower jumping around the house?

It is hard because I don't want to mourn their loss - it should be a celebration of two more cats finding a home in the world. And I need to learn to release my control-death-grip that I like to have on life and learn to trust that the needs of every little critter will be provided for, even if I am not personally the one cracking open the can of food. God cares for the sparrows and the lilies and the kitties and all of us. Right? Right. But I will miss them.

So there, my crazy-cat-lady monologue for the evening. Thanks for your patience! And by the way, the "crazy-cat-lady" bit was from Don, who referred to me as such with utmost affection, and neither he nor I consider those who take care of multiple felines to be at all crazy. At least not very crazy.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Watching the Grass Grow

I am not a very good gardener. I say that not because I can't get anything to grow; on the contrary, I can grow things very well. My problem always comes at about this point in the season, when everything is all blowsy and overgrown and buggy and disheveled... then I sorta lose interest.

Our little vegetable garden really did just fine this season. The tomatoes I lovingly raised from seed all grew vigorously and while the "purple cherokee" kept splitting before I could enjoy them, the two cherry tomato plants produced abundantly. We had potatoes, and would have enjoyed cucumbers and a few beans if they had not all peaked while we were away. But since I am now on a mission to ready our house for moving I decided it was time to officially undo the vegetable garden. (Which Don first installed back here, by the way.)

It actually took me a very small amount of time to ruthlessly clip and rip out the remaining plants, take a big crowbar to the bed, and rake the dirt smooth. We had a bit of leftover grass seed to use but I will need more. I moved one of our dinky wire fences in front of this patch to deter general trampling by children... feline trampling seems unavoidable.

Amy was a little suspicious of all this "undoing" so I simply explained that the veggies were done and now we were growing a grass garden. That was enough for her (not that our moving is a secret to her, by the way), and she quickly sat down to Watch the Grass Grow. Excellent. One pre-move project done, one zillion to go.