Monday, August 31, 2020

Mancat Monday

LAZ:  There are lots of places to explore here.
Today I am pushing myself unner the plant stand...

Its tight, but Im still a bit small.

OK, yeh that was really tight.  Im backing out...

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Easy Like Sunday

AYLA:  After months of cloudy or rainy days, it was bright sunlight this morning!  We are thrilled.
Our internal batteries are being recharged, our furs are bein warmed while our insides stay cool for a while, and we cant wait ta get outside.  Poor Laz, "not yet" though.

And we KNOW the mousies feel the same.  We bet they are SO TIRED of bein in their wet mousieholes, they will be coming out for flowerseeds and a bit of sunpuddle themselves.  Marley and I haven't had a mousie to play with for almost a week.  We will be hunting today!

Saturday, August 29, 2020

Wordy Saturday - Answers

TBT HERE:  Megan commented...  "Always fabulous to read about some of the history behind the present-day blog. I recall that you got Marley because his owner discovered that she was allergic to his fur. By the time you were in contact with her, she had promised him to someone else, but you managed to convince her that it would be better for him to move in with you. I wonder whether you might tell us a bit more of that story one day - what was it you said to persuade her to change her mind? And did that woman become a follower of the blog so that she could monitor Marley's development and reassure herself that she'd made the right decision?  

Another story that I'd love to hear is how you came to acquire Laz."

So, an answer...  I was searching for a young male orange/white cat because I am convinced by experience that they are friendly, peaceful, healthy, and calming.  I looked at shelter cats online, but they were always brothers that had to go together.  And that wasn't what I thought I needed.  I wanted ONE do be a calming influence in the house with Ayla and Iza being hissy at each other.

I was sent a link to a single orange/white male kitten on 'Craig's List'.  I emailed the owner.   She said she already had a family interested in him.  And she was only letting him go because he was a Christmas gift but discovered she was allergic to cats.

Well, you can't get what you don't ask for.  I discussed my retirement and cat-attention.  I invited her attention to my blog.  I mentioned my desire for an orange/white male cat.  I mentioned the great food I provided.  I talked about the previous cats and I talked about laptime.  I mentioned the high fence around the entire back yard and the mice available for a cat to hunt.  I talked about tossing toys and treats.  Etc.  

In short, I convinced the lady I was a better home for her cat than the family she had promised him too.  But I still had to visit to convince her I was a good cat-person.

When I visited her condo, she called Marley down from upstairs.  He actually responded, coming halfway down the stairs and looking at me, a stranger.

I sat on the floor with legs crossed, and he came right over and curled up.  He purred...  I sure didn't expect THAT!  But it sure convinced the lady that he liked me and that I was good with cats.  

That was what convinced the lady I was the right person for Marley. He sat right down in my lap even though I was a stranger to him.

There was a cost.  Marley had cost the gifter $135 at a shelter and she wanted that for a replacement gift.  I paid it and took Marley home.  I've never regretted it.

Marley was such an adorable kitten...

The lady followed the blog briefly.  She wasn't really a cat-person, so she stopped after a few weeks.  I did make sure to speak nicely of her.  Technically, I suspect she was required to return Marley to the Shelter, so I tried to disconnect him with her and me.  I was worried some shelter official would come and take him.

I asked her his name and she said I could call him anything I wanted, but I was curious.  He sure did respond to his name when she called him and that is a good start.  I asked about the name.  She was a Bob Marley fan, so "Marley".  OK, if his name was "Bazooka" or something like that, I would have changed his name.  I have some naming habits from characters of books.  But I thought "Marley" was a pretty good name and I kept it.  If I had kept to my 'Clan Of The Cave Bear' book series naming habit, he would be "Jondalar".  But "Marley" seemed to  fit him.

Now, about Laz...

I wanted a Tonkinese female to replace Iza.  I found a breeder in Baltimore who bred Tonkies, but they were really vague about "when and color" (Tonkies furs can be anywhere from (Burmese to Siamase).  Though they did say I would be a perfect cat-daddy for one.  But they appeared and disappeared sometimes and I worried about that.  

So I asked the breeder of Ayla and Iza if she knew of a Tonkie source.  She didn't, but mentioned she had a "half-siamese male" on her hands from a hard first home and might I be interested in him?"

I'm a sucker for a sad story.  And the picture she sent was awesome...  I agreed to buy.

Laz was originally in a home with 2 pit bulls and 2 grabby children.  When he was returned to the breeder (who did not actually breed him  and some mystery exists for me about that), he was mostly traumatized.  She kept him for months to try to re-socialize him.  That was "iffy".  So, when I contacted her about a Tonkinese female, she had no source but she did have him.  I don't think he even had a name.  She said there had been some interest in him, but she wasn't sure about how well he could adapt.  When I contacted her, she knew me from previous adoptions and decided I was his best chance.  She was probably right. 

Well, with book characters in mind, I was thinking 2 Tonkie female kittens from Heinlein's sci-fi books about Lazarus Long.  The character had 2 female clones named Lapis Lazuli and Lorelei Lee.  

Well not having both, I decided that the new half-siamese male with the gorgeous blue eyes could be "Lapis Lazuli" for the color and I would save Lorelei Lee for a Tonkie female "to come" later.

Laz is doing his best to adjust to a new home.  He isn't an easy one.  He doesn't seem to get "Laz" as a name.  He doesn't seem to understand "dinnertime" as a sound meaning food.  He doesn't get "come".  My words make little sense to him.  

But I can tell he is trying to get used to his Forever Home.  And it IS his Forever Home "good bad or indifferent".  You couldn't get him away from me without serious force.  I'm persistent.  He wants attention and I give it.  He just flops down in front of me and hopes...  I give scritchies.  He is beginning to invite chin rubs.  He isn't fully socialized, but he is trying, so I won't give up on him. 

Let's say he is half-socialized.  He would probably be happier in a one-cat home, but he isn't going to have that.  But he IS starting to relate to Marley (wrassling and Wow a head-grooming recently).  He chases Ayla around sometimes, but less than at first.  I have been a bit firm about him not doing that (hand-claps nothing more).  

He invites my attention more than he did at first.  Well, that is normal, but he does seem to understand that I'm a good thing in his life.  He nestles up against me at night more recently.  He is twitchy, but he feels some comfort sleeping next to me at night now.  

I see Laz and Ayla close to each other more too.  Ayla is still concerned about him, but things are getting better.  Next year, all this may be of no matter.  Or some.  We will see. 

There is still a desire to get another Tonkie female.  But until Laz is calm around other cats and fully one of The Mews, I dare not bring a kitten into the house.  I would bring an adult in (like Iza) because "she" could handle Laz even now.  But I'm cautious.

Laz has had enough stress in his life and adjusting is hard.  He is improving, but I don't want to bring another cat into his life (as much as I want a Tonkie female) until he is fully calm and social.  Laz is here now and deserves the best calming I can provide.  My desire for another Tonkie female is secondary to his need for a certainty of acceptance and trust in me.

Damn I wish Iza was still here.  She would have been a perfect partner for Laz...


Wednesday, August 26, 2020

The 14th Blogoversary Party

We had to let TBT explain our past yesserday, but today is PAWTY TIME!   We are hoping it will be The Best EVER!

We have arranged to have multiple tunnels!

Connect 2-in-1 Cat Tunnel | Free P&P £29+ at zooplus!

Rip them up.  We have more.

You & Me Double Wide Cardboard Cat Scratcher Refills | PetcoPin on Cat Scratching Pads


Colorful, Color, Foam Rubber, Balls


I think we have enough, and there is more in boxes.


We have LOTS of Nip!
Phoenix Farm Organic Dried Whole Catnip Catmint 0.4 by ...


We have LOTS of Boxes that TBT will bring out...
Please stop telling me to take care of myself (+10 Ways to ...


Ya cant have too many with a crowd...

 No, it won't be like THIS!
Best Litter Box For Multiple Cats That Want To Share

It will be a dozen nice ones set a few paws apart.  And cleaned every hour.  More if required.  Ayla will tell TBT when.  She is the fussiest.


There will be more ladders than usual.  Ayla and Laz say they want higher ones.  OK...
What to Know Before Buying Your First Ladder - Sunset ...
And for "new or nervous climbers"...
Cosco 2-Step All Steel Folding Step Stool, Gray, Each (CSC11135CLGG1)

Though we kinna used up the supply of mousies on Marley's Birfday Pawty, Laz has discovered crickets in the basement.  He will show you where to look.

Loud Sounds of Crickets Chirping - HD Audio - YouTube And you might find a skink...

So we will add pictures of us The Mews...

The PAWTY starts NOW!  Let it be a day ta remember...  We don't get a 14th Blogoversary every year!

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Our 14th Blogoversary!

TBT HERE:  This Blogoversary post will be different from previous ones.  The Mews agreed that since none of them were here (or even born yet) when the blog started, I should write today's post.  It makes it easier to refer to individual Mews, Cats-Who-Came-Before, the origins of the blog, and some events The Mews may not remember. 

Some of this will be stuff mentioned in past years.  But there are always some new readers since last blogoversary.  Also, I don't expect people to remember all details.  But I deliberately did not re-read the previous posts of this event, so I hope it will at least be organized a bit differently and maybe with some new recollections.

Technically (today being the 14th Blogoversary), the blog started Aug 25th 2006.  But in a way, it started a couple of years before that.  I do not recall exactly how I came across the 'Max, The Psychokitty' blog.  I certainly wasn't looking for a "cat blog", the concept had never crossed my mind!  I wasn't even looking for "cats", since I was perfectly happy with Skeeter and LC.  But it came up on an internet search of some sort. 

That was 2004.  I wasn't yet retired, so I would sneak a peek at Max's Blog on the office computer to rest my eyes from scrolling through massive databases looking for specific information.  I won't bore you about the details, but I was very good at picking out "interesting keywords" I had not thought of actually doing a search for.  It wasn't anything secret.  Just that I had recently figured out how to read our telephone vendors' proprietary data of my agency's long-distance calls and was trying to discover what useful information was there. 

Mostly, it was for dividing costs among our various offices.  But I also found some of the employees who were running businesses on Government time...  I kept our Inspector General's Office busy for a while...  Anyway, sometimes I just had to stop the high-speed scrolling.  It was like playing a high-speed pinball machine (which I was also good at).

So I used to internet-search odd topics.  I clicked on Max's (as so many other people must have done).  And I was hooked.  I'm snarky myself so Max always made my day.  When I retired in early 2006, I was looking for interesting things to do.  I had found a couple other blogs through Max's site and one day at one of the few, I saw a button that said "Free Blog".

I clicked to investigate what was required.  It seemed safe (no hidden costs, computer-invasions, outsider control, etc.  It took me several days to figure out what to do to set one up and to decide whether I actually had much to say.  I also quickly realized that a blog required some computer skills I did not then have. 

I had never processed pictures, changed the sizes, or copied them around the computer.  But my Mom and I had exchanged thoughtful, humorous, and clever letters since I left home (we both did poem parodies, jokes, and I could print out pics to include with the letters).  Sadly, by 2006, Mom was having "elder" difficulties with writing, memory, and creativity.  While I kept writing to her, she became unable to respond (Dad once mentioned to me that she read and re-read my letters and especially like seeing the pictures of me and the cats), so I kept it up until she died in 2010.

But it was no longer interactive in 2006, so I decided to give blogging a try.  It was confusing at first.  My first 2 posts didn't show up.  I figured out the problem Aug 29th and reposted the 2 that day.  I got my first comment Aug 30th 2006 (The Meezers).  I got my first pics posted on September 2nd.

There were problems in those first days.  I managed to block comments for a few days until someone found my email in the sidebar and told me.  I tried to post text next to small pics, which was quite maddening because everytime I edited text, the text moved around.  It took me a while to give up on that.  Partly, smaller pics saved space, and partly, text NEXT TO pics seemed easier to understand.  But I surrendered to the obvious and easier text under pics like newspaper captions

It was originally "Skeeter and LC".  Both the content, the blogger address and the Blog Title.  I suppose I thought they would both just live forever (or at least longer than the blog).    Hint to any new bloggers:  Don't address your blog after the current cats.  You can change the blog name, but the address remains and that can become painful.  And if you change the address, don't cancel it!  There is a scam-rat somewhere who took over the skeeterandlc address and uses it for scam-ads.

In the first months of the blog, I had Skeeter and LC discussing the house and yard from their point of view.  They didn't understand glass doors, fences, where food came from, cars, vaccuum cleaners, fish in the aquarium, and any number of human things that were "unnatural". 

Some of that confusion on their part WAS actually understandable.  I cleaned the deck door once so well that LC forgot it was there.  She crashed into it one night attacking a frog on it.  She actually broke the glass!  Skeeter never heard a plastic trash bag being opened that wouldn't terrify him into hiding for hours (he came from a small pet store and I suspect he learned that if any animal was put in a plastic bag it never returned).

And at this point, I think it is good to recall my cats here at the house I've lived in for 34 years (on Sept 2nd 1986).  It does lead to the blog...


I arrived here in 1986 with Tinkerbelle who was about 3.  She was a difficult cat due to a severe dog-bite that damaged her spine when she was a kitten.  She was extremely sensitive to touching that area.  My Sister and her young daughter were scratched often as a result and Sister offerred Tinkerbelle to me.  I accepted and learned to stroke Tinkerbelle carefully raising my hand over the sensitive spot.  She was never a truly happy cat, but she became more relaxed around me.  She came to trust me.

Skeeter arrived in 1992.  He was the first cat I actually chose myself (the others were all give-a-way grey tabby females) or Tinkerbelle).  I stopped at a small local pet store on Halloween.  It was being renovated.  I was looking for a female Siamese.  But there was this little terrified orange/white male kitten alone in a cage at the front of the store shaking from all the noise and dust. 

How could anyone leave such a kitten behind?  Well, sure, many must have, but I didn't.  Best $10 I ever spent!  Skeeter's posts are listed in the subject sidebar.  But I'll mention that it took him only a few days to realize everything was calm in his new place.  When he accepted that, he stayed around me like a mosquito.  When I was young, we called them "skeeters".  So that was his name.  And he was next to me most of the days of his life.

LC arrived the year after from the same place.  Tinkerbelle was not friendly to Skeeter.  And with the commute to the job, the hours of the job, and the commute home, I was gone 12 hours a day.  Skeeter was always desperate for my attention when I got home.  I could change my hours.  So I decided he needed a cat of his own.  Literally, a pet to take care of...

So there I was in the same small pet store (quiet and peaceful by then) on the same day a year later (1993).  There were 2 kittens in the front cage.  I was attracted to one.  It was friendly, loving, and sought attention.  But it was promised as a wedding present and being held while the newlyweds were on a cruiseship.

The other was standoffish, hissy, and unfriendly.  If I walked to one side of the cage, she went to the other.  Oh well.  I never met a cat who didn't come to love me.  I reached into the cage and held the kitten while the shop-owner loosened each claw from the other side.  That sounds like a BAD start, doesn't it?  Well, she hid for a couple days, but I sat and talked to her a lot (pushing tiny amounts of food each time).  She decided I was OK.  But, as planned, I oriented her to Skeeter.  Like I said, I was away most all day. 

It worked as planned.  Mean Old Tinkerbelle didn't like Skeeter, and she disliked LC more.  So Skeeter "Mancatted" up and protected LC.  It was the start of a 16 year friendship. 

The name LC came from her furs.  She was white with  black splotches and a co-worker finally said she looked like a cow.  LC stood for "Little Cow".

Skeeter and LC were devoted to each other all the days of their lives.  Skeeter died at 16.5 in December 2008.  LC died at almost the same age in January 2010.  She missed Skeeter so much that she only came up on my lap regularly her last few months.

But I need to mention Tinkerbelle again because her fate was not explained.  She used to go outside and stay out all night.  The neighbor once mentioned to me that she would always go sit on the front steps about 15 minutes before I arrived home.  She was a huntress and there was a swamp across the street with a field near the road. 

That was her personal place.  So it wasn't unusual that when I let her out in the morning that she would stay out most of the day.  Mostly she would return to the house when I called but smeties she wouldn't.  She never really liked Skeeter and LC, not that they bothered her, but I think she resented not being an Only Cat.

So one day in 1999, she was out and I was going fishing with a friend.  She didn't come in, but I knew she would be there when I returned.  I never saw her again.  Well, she was at least 16.  And I have read of cats that seemed to go off to die alone.  I don't know about that, but I never found a trace of her. 

Maybe she found a new home free of other cats (and dogs).  I put up posters.  I walked the streets in daytime and at night.  I asked neighbors if they had seen a roadkill cat.  I found a lost cat once and put up posters.  By the time I was attaching the 3rd one to a street sign, a girl on a bike said "that's my cat".  I returned it.  But I wasn't that lucky with Tinkerbelle.

Here's an odd thought.  Suppose you die and whatever your deity is says you can ask one question which that deity will answer fully.  Suppose you would love to know the history of humankind after you dis?  Or suppose you would love to understand how the universe began?  I'd love those answers.  But suppose I had the chance to know what happened to Tinkerbelle?  I think I would ask about Tinkerbelle...  The lack of closure hurts me to this day.

You all know about Ayla, Marley, Iza, and Laz.  But briefly, Ayla in 2008 was finally the female Siamese I was searching for back in 1992, Iza was too in 2009, but turned out to be a Tonkinese (to my joy of herself),  Marley "sort of" replaced Skeeter but is a special buddy all his own, and Laz is new and adjusting to life here and we will see what the future brings.

So this 14th Blogoversary is a trip down Memory Lane.  And because I chose to be all texty today, TOMMOROW is going to be the PARTY DAY!

Because today is the start of the blog, but it didn't show then.  And it took a few days, so I can choose any of the days for a PARTY.  And Its MY BLOG, so I make all the rules, LOL!


Monday, August 24, 2020

Mancat Monday

LAZ:  I found a nice padded cell hut.  All cushiony inside!  TBT took this first pic across the room in the dim, so it comed out a bit funny.
But I stayed there while he get closer and played wif the flashy and they were better.
Not great, "better".  Ha, ha, meow.

Sunday, August 23, 2020

Easy Like Sunday

It is Sunday, so we are all taking extra care ta relax properly between meals...

Laz got 2 pics cuz he actally moved.  That made it differnt.  He isnt as good at relaxin yet.

Friday, August 21, 2020

Flashback Friday

Today we look at this week in 2009, the Girls were nappin...

Except for Ayla. 

She was going after THESE!
Purple Mouse, Bloo Mouse, and Rattley Mouse used to be favories...

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Garden Tour Thursday

AYLA:  Looks like I get the Tour Job.  So while we dont have a lot ta show, I will do my best!

The Black-Eyed Susans are doing well.  They should, as they are native here.
 They are thriving in many places around the yard and we like them a lot.
A 3rd place...
Our original butterfly bushes (older than me even) have been slowly dying.  But a volunteer grew.  It looks as good as the old ones.
It didn't get prined back last Winter because TBT was afraid of killing it so he could take cuttings.  That dint werk...  But it grows, so he likes it.
Thats all we have right now.  The constant rain isn't good for flowering.

But we allus appreciate visitors on the Garden Tour (such as it is this week), so I asked TBT ta help Marley and Laz choose better snacks than usual.

Well, look at this.  We have SHRIMPS!  And some Ham and some fancy drinks...

A Nip Smash!  Nip with Toona juice and bubbly water!  New ta me too.  The bubbles are fun in yer nosie.

Thanks fer coming along on the Garden Tour...

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Twosday Recoverin

LAZ:   Oh wow...  That was quite a big deal Sundy.  I dint know what pawtys were like.  I mean, yeah, Ayla had one 2 moons ago, but I mostly hid.  But Marley was so thrilled this time and there were lots of other cats here .  I firs dint know what ta do but then there were other cats my age and wee ran aroun like nutsos.  That was gud.

TBT says I have one coming up in Toctober 25 myself.  I dint even know I had a birfday.  But it seems I get it on then an will be all ecited then. 

But ti then, I got a chair.

Even better, the boxes went away today.  So I can sit with pride.  Yeah, Im a little confoosed.  Things are all new t me.  Today, Im happy to sit and think about Marleys pawty...

Monday, August 17, 2020

Mancat Monday

MARLEY:   I am resting after the pawty.  It was so great for all of you to come and help me celebrate!
It was so good to see friends nosies-nosies and play and run around.  Laz was a bit stunned though.  He dint imagine so many cats in the house!  But he DID enjoy running around with the younger cats.  Purrsonally, anything that works off some of his youthy energy is good...

I loved it all.   Old friends, good friends, some new friends...  10 is GOOD!

Good thing we just received 3 cases of good Stinky Goodness, today though.  We almost ran out yesserday.  MOL!

Sunday, August 16, 2020

I'm 10!

MARLEY:  I hit 2 numbers today!  Isnt that great?  So I got 2x the foods (and toona, my fave).

I weighed exactly 16 pounds today (before eating).  Dad weighs me some days.  Not like that I like bein picked up, but it is brief.

I can take up a whole chair back!

So, it is PAWTY TIME!

I have toys, foods, boxes, trees, and foods.  I love foods...

Ham (TBT cuts us the center parts away from the icky sweet glaze that HE likes)!
Ladders fer who likes ta climb...

 Bathtub mice (I been collecting them).  Catch em iffen ya can.  They are fast ones.
 Allus have ta have some shrimps!
 And games...
An toys...
Wands that Laz hasn't eaten the strings off yet...
AND...  TBT (who is allus happier than he looks) to make sure everykitty is happy and the boxes are clean for the clowders an there is fuds evrywhere..