Each year, I'm fond of sharing the moments that made a year special, or at least, memorable. Then 2020 happened.
Still, I want to share some of the moments of this year--it was, generally, quite stressful and a bit of a shitshow, but there were good moments in there. And kittens. There were kittens.
A Moment Before the Chaos
A Moment of Confusion...and Then A Lot More of Those
A Moment of Disappointment...Followed By Kittens
By May, it was apparent that my plans for June--a return to England, complete with a Keane gig, two West End plays (Hamilton, Sunday in the Park With George)--were not going to happen. Needless to say, I was really sad to have to cancel that one, but I do have vouchers on Expedia to take the trip again when it's safe to do so.
What's a lady to do? Faced with two months of summer vacation and no way to travel anywhere, I did the next-best thing.
I brought home three kittens.
One day after filling out an online application to foster, Animal Outreach of the Mother Lode called me. They were desperate for fosters. "Can you come today and pick up some babies?" They didn't need to ask twice.
I arrived to find a cat carrier with three itty-bitty ginger babies--all girls. Oh, my God.
On the drive home, I decided that I would honor my cancelled England trip by giving the babies names of famous English Ladies. And so, Lizzie (for the Queen), Aggie (for Agatha Christie), and Jane (Jane Austen) came to stay for two months. Two months of absolute chaos in my 2nd bedroom, and two months of adorableness.
From the start, they were sweet. Jane had a habit of climbing my shirt to nuzzle in my neck. Aggie was a wild woman. Lizzie, a big eater and sassy-pants. They all had soft poos to start, and needed baths, which didn't exactly make them happy, but it did make them smell a lot better. The picture of Aggie wrapped in a clean rag, looking at me like she's ready to murder me, will forever be a favorite. She was less than one pound, but she had attitude for days, that one.
So my second bedroom/office became Kitten Central. I bought a big enclosure (the kind you can use for a dog in a yard to keep them in one place) and used that until they--well, Aggie--learned how to climb out of it.
Of course, I fell in love, but I always knew I cannot be a foster fail. My boys are enough for me, and fostering is a temporary situation, one I can only do when I'm not working. And the boys' reaction? Utter curiosity. They never seemed upset, only extremely curious about the new smells coming from behind a closed door that had always previously been open to them.
I kept everyone separate for a couple of weeks, to ensure the girls wouldn't give the boys anything, or that my enormous 13-pound dudes wouldn't hurt the babies.
Finally, I was able to let everyone integrate, but I always supervised. The babies had a few play times each day where they had run of my living room, and Archie and Popcorn proved to be the sweetest and gentlest of uncles. They played with the girls so carefully, and groomed them...when the girls sat still long enough. There was no hissing or posturing, only curiosity and good-natured playing.
I had two months of adorable, hilarious moments with my English Ladies. In late July, I tearfully returned them to the AO shelter. I don't know who adopted them, but I know they were all adopted quickly. Of course it was hard to say goodbye, but I'm so proud of what I was able to do for them in their time in my home. We overcame soft poos, a couple of eye infections, and they learned how to Cat. After starting life on a farm, in a situation with a lot of cats that needed help, these babies got their best possible outcome.
|There is nothing like kittens.|
|Aggie, the day after being spayed, didn't let that|
slow her down from getting halfway up my screen
when I had my back turned.
|Lizzie and the most adorable little BLEP.|
|Technically, you're supposed to keep kittens quiet|
the day after they've had spay surgery. Like Aggie
on the screen, Jane laughed at that.
|My last look at my girls, each about tripled in size|
from the day I brought them home. I was already
crying, but also so proud...and ready to deep clean
The Moments In Between
|I bought a new Christmas tree this year, a foot |
taller than my old one. I'm going to have to replace
my smaller "travel tree" with something larger soon.
It's running out of space.
|I got one trip to the coast in this crazy year. I did|
some walking, wore a bandana over my face around
other people, and avoided the beaches. It was just
good to see the Pacific.
|You have no idea how awful it is to see a child|
running at you, arms wide, so happy to see you,
and you have to say, "Don't hug me!!!" I felt like