Tuesday, December 28, 2021

Post-Christmas Post Post- Gonna Be a Longish One

Post, post post. . .

Sorry, had to make a bit of fun of dad.  So Christmas Day here was a veritably joyous loungepalooza, stretching leisurely from the jaw-dropping glory of a brilliant western North Carolina sunrise-

Apologies for the Screen
- actually, let me back up a minute.  Dad took this next one Christmas Eve Day as he was zooming up the drive on the UTV, which didn't seem to bother them much as they just went back to grazing before loping off towards one of dad's trails.
Can you see all four of 'em?
So back to the stretching leisurely thing:  Dad woke stupidly early as usual and on shuffling to his lifeblood machine to hit the brew button found my gift to him.  He relishes the addition of a little shot of "flavor" on special occasions, and me and mom knew this would do the trick on this special morning.

The gift-giving stretched on through the day, peppered with texts, calls and zooms with kids and grands, keeping the fireplace aglow, even though today was supposed to hit almost 70, and the occasional nibble of chocolate and a light breakfast. 

Mom laid out all the loot when all was said and done, and the overall themes became apparent; hers seemed to be a good deal about cosmetics, candles and clothes, food & beverages (mostly, anyway) for dad, and toys & treats for Yours Truly (and I'll grudgingly throw in a mention of the seed wreath there on the right end for our feathered friends from dad's work).  My Advent calendar is but a ghost of its former self,
and this is a mug I got for mom.  Since I can't read (I know, I know- but I can write blog posts?) I trusted dad's assertion that it says "To the BEST Cat Mom in the World".  Dad found this compliments of Melissa & Mudpie's 2021 Holiday Gift Guide for Tortie Lovers.
And then there's this stuff that mom got dad.  I don't know, I guess it's some kind of cologne or something.  Any guesses?

Dad says he can't even begin to pick a favorite, but these are right up there.  He's never been much of one for wearing any kind of "jewelry" except for the Libra pendant mom gave him eons ago, but he's always wanted a more natural wrist thingy, and he fell in love with this guitar pick-holder necklace mom gave him. 

She put a special 3D pick in it that she gave him some years ago, and he says now he officially feels like the rock star he'd always dreamed of being.  
As I said, dad cannot pick one favorite, but most certainly at the top is a binder mom says is a work-in-progress that she put together for him with all of the artwork and lots of photos of his grandkids from over the years.  This would be up there, too,

but the binder must've beat it because it made dad cry in front of me and mom.  If you remember, mom's sis up in NH had previously given dad a jug o' pure maple syrup since he's an addict, and when he opened this t-shirt from said sis he said he couldn't've said it better himself. 
They wanted to do something a little different for Christmas dinner this year, so they'd decided on an easy, minimal prep all-in-one oven-roasted corned beef & cabbage feast, and they weren't disappointed, except for the fact that they thought there'd be more leftovers than there ended up being. 

I'll apologize on dad's behalf for the poor focus here.  If I'm not mistaken, I believe he snapped this after a few rounds of the Saint Brendan's.  And finally, what's a holiday without beer?  Dad loves trying new ones, and mom didn't disappoint with this marvelous selection.
That's the grandkids' binder there on the left

Now, you know how much I hate being left out of posts, so I'll end this one with me and dad working on our post-Christmas post post post thing, 

and our dorky group selfie.  They gave up after several attempts to get me to look at the camera which I fought because, well, cat . . .
He Who Has More Hair on the Bottom of His Head than the Top, Princess Pajama pants and She Who Refuses to Look at the Camera
Oh, and yes, that's that darn little Norfolk Pine, still kickin'!

Thursday, December 23, 2021

Christmas Break

First off, dad wants me to explain something after reading so many comments on the first "Routines" post- mom & dad sleep with the door open 99.999% of the time unless I'm being a complete booger. You see, dad's the morning person here, so when he and I get up in the middle of the night real early he usually closes the door so we don't wake mom.  As for the bathroom door, well, I suppose it depends on who's actually in there and what, exactly, they're doing (don't think you need details here).  Life here is pretty open-door overall is all I'll say.  Didn't Ann and June do a splendiferous job with my special Christmas photo?  It melted mom's heart so, and dad felt it was purrfeclty fitting for my special holiday header.  Thank you, Ann, for your creativity and kindness. 

 So mom and dad are both feeling better, even though dad's cough is a little more persistent than they'd care to deal with. 

One of Those Kitty Puzzles dad Picked Up from Freecycle

As you can see, they're getting back into some kind of routine themselves, and unfortunately for me they do the puzzles up on a table now, damn them. 
Just the Box Cover- They're not finished yet

Our Christmas, much like every other holiday, will be just the 3 of us all nice and cozy here in our home.  Low key, nice and quiet, no traveling, good food (and beverages, of course)- in other words, just the way we like it.  We hope all y'all's Christmas festivities, however you spend them, are joyous, safe and as relaxing as they can be.  Not sure about the effectiveness of wishing anyone safe travels, but if you are traveling to visit loved ones, please be careful, and mindful of what's what, okay? 

 Merry Christmas from our home to yours!

Friday, December 17, 2021

Routines part I

 We've all got 'em, right?  Creatures of habit, blah blah blah...  Anyhoo, before I get going dad wants me to pass on big thanks for all your well wishes and kind words for him and mom.  They're both doing much, much better except for these dang coughs that just don't wanna let go.  Now as I was saying, y'all know we're creatures of habit, and I'll bet every one of you has your own routine, right down to feeding times, sleep habits and other regular every day stuff.  Dad even keeps track of my, well, health, I guess, by what's in my litter box each day.  This is part 1 of just one small piece of a "typical" day here in our household.  I'm sure some of you can relate.


Even in the Bathroom it's like "hey, whatcha doin'?
So when I finally open the bedroom door for the old girl, she gets what she was after the whole time.  

Sunday, December 12, 2021

No Catchy Title

Mom's still coughing.

Now dad's sick.

Says if he sleeps anymore he'll go crazy.

Shuffled out of the sick room (the spare bedroom they've been using when each is sick so they don't wake the other) at 2:17 this morning and tried to be creative.  I told him to just put some of my most Awwww-inducing pictures up and go back to bed. 

All I can say is I'm glad cats can't catch this crap from humans.  Hopefully we'll be in tip top shape for our next post. Now go back to bed, old man.

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

What Do You Mean It Goes Nowhere?

 Mom and dad's hiking has slowed a bit with the colder weather and for other reasons, but they recently took an hour and a half drive west to do some easy hiking in Bryson City and the gateway to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. 

They'd read about a curious landmark known as the Road to Nowhere Tunnel and had to check it out for themselves. 

I won't get into the story here as there is a plethora of information about its history, photos galore and whatnot otherall online.  Dad says Google it.  I say he's a lazy ass and in a mood. 
Mom On Her Way Into the Tunnel

After meandering through the damp, chilly graffiti-covered tunnel, they took an easy walk on one of the shorter trails just to be out in the fresh air. 
Mom Atop the Tunnel

Oh, and yes, the road on the other end of the tunnel does, indeed go nowhere.  It just ends, just like that.  Parts of the story of the tunnel reminded dad of the history of Quabbin Reservoir up in Massachusetts in that people, homes & businesses were displaced in the name of "progress".  We'll just leave it at that. 

Yep, More Mom

View of the Tuckasegee River on the Way to the Tunnel

Friday, December 3, 2021

The Countdown Begins

 Yep, they make 'em for us kitties, too!  Mom picked this one up at Trader Joe's, and the yummy tidbits hiding behind each door so far are a true treat for this here ladycat.   So far it's been only dad helping me open the first two doors as part of our morning routine. Purrs please for mom- we've been keeping an eye on her as she's fighting a nasty sleep-inhibiting cough and tries to grab some snoozies every chance she gets.

Sunday, November 28, 2021

Sunday Slumbering Tortie Photo Dump

 Y'all have your own adorable-beyond-adorable snoozy photos, I know, but dad couldn't help himself here.  Mom recently came home with a checkerboard electric blanket after tiring of dad's bitching totally sympathizing with dad's recent complaints about being cold, and although dad says he's always been afraid of using them he's sure as tootin' grown real fond of it over these past few chilly days.  Now, before you think it yes, they're careful with it, and they're thankful that Yours Truly has never been one for kneading.  That, and mom keeps my talons pretty well trimmed.  Anyway, as this post's title says, dad decided to just dump all these shots of their reason for existing doing what she does best.  Hope you enjoy seeing them a fraction as much as I did posing for them.  Ready?  Here goes-

I gotta say, even if it's not plugged in, the darn thing is sooooo comfy!

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

What Special Needs?

One of dad's handcrafted pieces of fine ornate carpentry has adorned our living room for a while now, and I wanted to share it as an addition to our  previous post about my steps and such.  When I first showed signs of limping he and mom tried to cover all their bases to make things easy for me. 

As you can see, dad's my chair is, well, mine, but the height of the seat cushion was concerning. It only took a few minutes, but I trained myself to use this ramp with ease, and it's become a permanent piece of furniture.  Since feeling better I've taken to hopping up on the top platform, but still use it to go down. 

As with the two-step thing they put by the bench in the other room, dad covered the flat surfaces of the ramp with carpet padding so I don't slip.

Dad's got a few days off for the Thanksgiving holiday, so I get to enjoy both of them together for a nice little stretch.  We're not doing much; just keeping it low key as always, and they're talking about doing some local hiking and other wanderings.  Mom made her mouth watering apple pie, and we're having a rotisserie chicken with fresh green beans & brussels sprouts and dad's yummy stuffing.  Oh, and the champagne and OJ are chilling for some refreshing mimosas.  We want to wish all y'all a safe, warm, relaxing and enjoyable Thanksgiving.  I'm sure as shootin' thankful for being an inside-only kitty with the temps what they are these few days!  Dad says it was about 17 degrees when he got up this morning.  

Thursday, November 18, 2021

Life on My Time

 Okay, so here's what happens on occasional mornings when I think someone else in this house should be awake to keep me company no matter what time it is.  Mom always sets up dad's coffee maker the day before, so dad just has to hit the button at bedtime that'll make it ready by the time he slides out of bed.  Currently, it's set to start brewing at 4:30 so that it's ready when dad rises at 5:00, but more often than not he's out there once he hears it spitting and sputtering to life.  I seem to go through spurts of whatever you want to call it, waking mom and dad by 3:00 by walking back and forth over them, talking loudly, unable to settle and generally being annoying just being me. 

This particular recent morning happened to also be the morning after dad snuck an additional cup of water and scoop of grounds into the coffee maker after mom had set it up (mom'll just be hearing about this for the first time when she reads this).  He must've known something.  Anyway, that clock was not changed to enhance this post.  He did, in fact, finish that whole pot by 5:45 a.m. 👀 Who does that?  Any other fiends out there?  

Thursday, November 11, 2021

The Old Girl and the Bench

Dad here- first off, let me apologize for the poor focus of these photos.  It's hard to capture the old girl being still, so yeah, that's my excuse.
I know we've posted photos before of the Queen Bee on this bench, but that was a while ago. 

Since then- and especially over the past few months- we've had some concerns about her ability to climb, jump, etc. due to arthritis issues. 
She had a noticeable limp for some time, but her medication seems to be helping, and her limp is all but gone.  Between the various blocks, steps and ramps I've tried to fashion with my rough carpentry skills she's been able to get to most places easily enough with her ailing antique joints and all. She'd previously been able to jump up onto this bench with ease, but it had been quite a while since she even attempted it.  We've always tried to watch to make sure she doesn't jump, but she hasn't even shown interest in it.  Until the other night. We were sitting at the kitchen island and out of the corner of my eye I spotted large multicolored motion, and turned to see her perched on the bench behind us, just sitting there looking at us as if to say, "hey guys, whatcha doing?" 

Even though we don't want her getting into habits that might aggravate her arthritis, we were happy to see her energy level returning.  I immediately ran to the basement to get the simple set of steps I'd made which we hadn't been using, and set them by the bench. 

Sure enough, she stepped right down to the floor, and over the next few minutes went up and down them several times, stopping occasionally to bathe. 

Her pail of toys was on the bench, and we caught her with her head in it once or twice, and she even showed brief renewed interest in Miss Ellen's handmande 'nip ball.

Anyway, I know this is nothing exciting to most of you, but to us it was gratifying to see Her Highness feeling better and somewhat back to her old self.  She's even gotten the zoomies these past few nights, scuttling back and forth behind the living room drapes, yowling like she's got a megaphone, her head zipping back and forth like she sees something we can't.  We know that, at 17 she'll continue to have joint, kidney and other issues, but mom and I are grateful to see her being more active again.