My Espresso Truffle Kitten…Katniss

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Whoever said cats will be cats is simply wrong. Cats will be more than just cats. They will be your best friend, your joy, and even your writing buddy. Katniss is our new kitten Henry and I adopted just days ago. It was our first time going into a humane society and adopting.

As I entered the “cat room” many emotions washed over me. I felt overwhelmed with the amount of beautiful cats and kittens meowing for my attention. I found my hand reaching out to touch each one as I walked through the storm of meowing. Then, I felt saddened that each cat has yet to find a home. Henry and I stayed awhile saying hi to each cat, then finally we came together to make a hard decision…which one do we take home?

Henry chose three that he really liked. They were playful, friendly, and of course…cute. But something inside didn’t feel complete yet. So, we walked around some more. There were three kittens separated from the others. One was really, I mean extremely shy. Another a black and white mix kitten, very friendly. The other…well, she was sleeping, until Henry clicked his tongue softly and immediately this beautiful four-month tortoiseshell kitty came purring to Henry’s finger tip. She was the one.

The humane society described her as “spunky,” we describe her as “crazy!” She has a gentle side to her where she will purr for half an hour and lick our faces. The other side to her thinks everything is play…even our fingers and toes.

It’s been hard to teach her to not bite at our toes and fingers. Using a spray bottle works well with her. Sometimes, she literally gets soaked with that spray bottle, but she is learning. The absolute hardest part of having a kitten is the fact that she does have nails. Declawing is very inhumane, and we’ve been looking at the other options available. We know that she doesn’t intend to hurt us, ever, because she is just playing.

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This morning she’s learned, I think, that it hurts us because she is starting to lick our fingers and toes after she “attacks…” never to the extreme though. When I take her out on the deck every morning and wrap her up in my arms, she purrs on my shoulder making everything better. She will sit in my lap and watch the hummingbirds with me. It reminds me that she’s just a kitten and has a lot to learn…kind of like all of us.

So, why Katniss? Well, have you read The Hunger Games? Do you know Katniss’ nickname? Catnip. This kitten is full of energy with a huge heart. She reminds us of Katniss, and after listing through a million names, Katniss just spoke to us.

Today, as I write, she is my little writing buddy and my spunky inspiration. She is my fourth charm. She jumps up into my arms and watches as I write. She is more than just a cat. She’s my little espresso truffle. xo

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Nothing a little wine can’t fix

As I unpacked my summer clothes and started up my laptop to work on my second novel, I stopped and thought to myself. This is going to be two weeks I will never forget. So, I closed my laptop and walked back down stairs to spend time with my dad instead of write.

I found myself at a crossroad because graduating from college felt like an end. It felt like it was all over, and anxiety developed within me. The one person that truly helped me was my dad. After having a meltdown in front of him, he said the words that I needed to hear…a father-daughter moment. He grabbed two glasses and a bottle of cranberry wine. We walked outside as the rain was just sprinkling over the countryside and we were sheltered under the tin roof Dad built on the deck out back.

We laughed. I laughed. And I really needed that. When you feel like you are at an end and have no where to go, grab hold to the ones you love and they will always help you find your way.

This is what I’ve learned in these two weeks of summer. Dad was right all along…sometimes a little wine is all you need…to rid the anxiety that is. And he was right. I graduated and it’s all over, but a new beginning is just over that rainy horizon. And I will always have the memories, because graduation happened.

Easter Morning: A Poem

Soft giggles fill the air

as footsteps light on the toes

spring up before Mom’s

Morning Joe. Swiftly do they sprint,

like the Easter bunny himself,

racing to reach the stuffed pastels.

Curls still smell of soft pillow and cotton

as they bounce with their bodies

past the tulips blooming. And

before a puddle, a small, yellow

and hatched from an egg,

a duckling as it plays

at the children’s feet,

greeting the happy faces

and hands that feed, then there!

There’s an egg, they rush

to see. Hop, hop, hop goes a bunny

white, fluffy and fast on his feet.

The blessed smiles on siblings

only families get to see.

A spring holiday to celebrate: Planting Day at Grandma’s

Every year, my grandma Shirley has a Planting Day where the whole family gets together and we “fix up” Grandma’s garden. It barely needs fixing as it’s the most beautiful place to visit. She has the most fragrant of roses and you’ll always see Grandma with a beautiful sun hat on whenever she’s outside. Her deck overhangs so that the whole garden surrounds it. Stepping stones rest around the flowers to allow wandering feet to walk up the hill-like garden of bountiful flowers and the sweetest of birds.

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Last summer my sister, Mom, Grandma, and I would sit on the deck and eat ice cream together and have what Grandma calls, “talks of saving the world.” Everyone should meet my Grandma. She is the sweetest woman and a huge inspiration. Her home is the most relaxing place to go. She puts so much work into her gardening, pretty much every other day she is out there doing something when the weather is warm. But on Planting Day, when we all get in our sweatpants and sweatshirts to dig in the dirt and do a small project for Grandma, it seems to be the day I look forward to the most. Not to mention she serves us all fruit and ice cream and everything delicious when we all come.

I cannot write enough about Spring and especially this year as Grandma has just retired and now she really gets to enjoy the warm weather and I’m so happy for her. This Planting Day, with the family is going to be very exciting. I also, graduate college next month and get to move back home, closer to family and Grandma. I’m not sure if Grandma made up Planting Day, but it should definitely be a day every family celebrates together. Of course we all do gardening often with our family, but how often do we get the whole family together to plant at Grandma’s? It should be at least once every year. I suppose, I should mention Grandma has (counting on my fingers) 17 grandchildren. So our family gatherings get pretty big. Getting everyone together is essential, and makes for a day filled with happiness that continues to bloom every year.