Posts tagged cats
Life with Lilly: The Spring Cleaning Series

Last weekend I spent sometime weeding out old clothes from my closet. It's almost spring in Michigan, and I say almost because at some point it has to stop snowing, and that means it's time for spring cleaning. I decided to get a jump on it this year, maybe to give the world a hint we're done with winter. Like, really done. We're 3 inches of snow away from being hands down the worst winter on record, and I think I can honestly speak for everyone when I say we are ready for spring.

Somehow every year during the winter months our house becomes so cluttered with stuff. I don't know how this happens exactly or where it all comes from, but every spring we have a porch full of items to donate to Goodwill. Does anyone else experience this phenomenon?

This year, Lilly of course, decided to help. She is a very involved pet. While Linus snoozes on the rug next to me, she is in my face. Most of the time I feel my way through a task because I cannot actually see what I'm trying to do, instead all I can see are whiskers and fur. For some reason she really loves to "help me" wash dishes and open the mail, which means that she mostly likes to get in the sink and sit on the mail, but I like to think that's her brand of helping. So to help me clean out my closet she decided the best place she could possibly be was on top of the donation pile. I make a new pile, she gets on top of it. I relocate her to an equally comfy spot, she is immediately back on the pile. After about five minutes of that game I gave up and just let her stay there.

Pick your battles :)

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Life with Lilly: The Cat Grass Series

Like most cats, our sweet little bundle of fur loves more than anything else to go outside and eat the grass. Sometimes before I can even open the door enough to walk through she is out the door, down the stairs and off into the backyard like a speeding bullet. I like to give her as much time as possible outside when the weather is nice because I know how much she loves it. This time is supervised, meaning I sit outside and watch her like a hawk. Why? Because she is bad, that's why. She has discovered that she can climb up under our back porch deck and hide there without me being able to get to her. It is her favorite place to be. Let's face it, if I was her I'd do the exact same thing. It has to be similar to finding a cozy little hiding spot when you were a kid and claiming it as your own. Getting her back from under the deck usually results in me bribing her out with cat nip and treats. That works about 50% of the time. The rest of the time is on her schedule. This could take a few minutes or an hour, it really just depends on how sassy she is feeling that day. 


During the winter months, as an alternative to going outside, I've started a little window sill garden for her. We have a pot of cat nip, which is devoured immediately upon spouting, and two rotating pots of cat grass. We have two pots of grass so that one is constantly growing while she is working on destroying the other one. I say destroy because she mostly likes to rip the grass out of the pot and drop it on the counter. It goes like this: she rips it out, drops it and then death stares at it like she can't believe it had the nerve to come up out of the dirt. At this point, it's dead to her. See below.


This is fairly new system I've implemented for her that seems to be working out quite well for both of us. It takes her a few days to completely decimate the first pot, which is about as long as it takes for a new pot to sprout up. It's a never ending cycle of destruction, just the way she likes it. The more I please her during waking hours, the less she torments all of us in our sleep. More on that a different day. 

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Life with Lilly

If you don't already know, we adopted a cat from a local shelter in 2009, named Lilly. You can read about that (and then some) here. She is sweet and cute and absolutely fully of personality. So full of personality in fact, that I've decided to start a little column here on the blog to share some of her stories with you, called Life with Lilly. It's mostly going to be funny photos of her non-sense and shenanigans. And here it goes..


One thing I love more than Nate Berkus is Target, put them together and you've got a winning combination in my book. We purchased this basket to keep our mail in and our counter top tidy, but upon bringing it home, it was immediately reclaimed (along with everything in it) as a miniature sized cat bed, or maybe she is just an over-sized cat. You can find her here at any given point during the day. Need something out of that basket? You're going to have to wait your turn. My favorite thing about this situation is that half of her body doesn't even fit and you know she cannot be that comfortable. But still, it's hers and she loves it.



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The story of Lilly and the last time I slept

I didn't get much sleep last night. As I was reflecting back on why exactly that is I thought it might be a good story to tell you. It all starts in October 2009, a week before Halloween. The last time I really knew what a full night's sleep felt like.

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Steve and I were just starting our relationship. We were falling madly in love with each other and like a lot of people do, we thought it would be a great idea to get a(nother) pet. On a trip to the pet store to pick-up food for Linus we happened to wander by the cats that were available for adoption. Most of them were sleeping with their backs turned to us and couldn't care less that we even existed, except one. This cat was different. She was friendly and excited to see us. Rubbing her entire body up against the glass like she was glued to it, reaching her paw out like she wanted to shake hands, her purring was so loud we could practically feel the vibrations through the glass. She worked us. Bad. We got our food and went home, sad to leave her there. We found ourselves not being able to stop thinking about her. We called the adoption agency and filled out an application. Within a week we were accepted and told we could bring her home. Oh, we were so excited.

On the day we went to get her from the pet store we met a cat that we had never seen before. She was pissed and mean. I tried to pet her and she swiped her little jagged claws at me like she wanted me dead. Steve and I looked at each other scared for our lives. The adoption manager assured us that she was upset about being cooped up in her cage so long and she had just had her nails cut and that she would calm down and return to her normal, lovely little self. So we put her in the pet carrier and took her home. On the way home we heard a little "mew" from the back seat. I reluctantly turned around and put my finger into her carrier hoping it would not have been bitten off. I felt a nose and a little lick, followed by a couple more friendly meows. Phew. Thank goodness we weren't bringing devil kitty home. Or so we thought.

The first night home was eventful. Within five minutes of letting her out of that carrier she ran away.  Out the door, down the stairs and into the dark. Steve chased after her in his socks and brought her back. We immediately got her a little red collar with a jingly bell on it so that we could track her whereabouts. Ninja kitty no more. Best $4 we ever spent.

Fast forward a couple years to the recent past. Lilly is a wonderful kitty. She is friendly, warm and loving. She loves people and is extremely personable. She visits with our house guests and even tries to snuggle up with our dog. He doesn't like her, but he does tolerate her. Sometimes she hides on him and when he walks by she bats him in the head. This of course turns into a high speed chase throughout our house. They never hurt each other and its actually pretty funny to watch them play.  

During the day she sleeps. She also sleeps in the evening and into the night. But around 11 p.m. things change. Our house turns into a war zone. Lilly is awake and has a full tank of energy. She comes up into our bedroom to lay on me making sure to headbutt the phone or book out of my hand so it is clear what my priorities are. Its time to pet her. And love her. And give her my undivided attention. Ok, cat. I'm on it. Eventually though I fall asleep and this is when things really get crazy. She is wired. Sleeping is not an option. She walks on my face, walks on Steve's face, walks on the dog's face. Now we are all pissed. She takes off running at full speed through the house. Naturally the dog goes after her to warn her not to come back. This buys us a few precious moments of sleep.

2 a.m. scratch scratch scratch scratch scratch rhythmically on the wall. Pillow thrown, target hit, but not down. There she goes racing down the hallway, dog not far behind. 2:15 a.m. repeat. 3 a.m she is standing on my back meowing. 3:30 a.m. I dream that someone is punching me in the stomach and wake to find the cat headbutting me in the ribs. 3:32 a.m. a tail is flicking me repeatedly in the face as she tries to get in the nearby attic door. Now I can't be sure, but it would seem logical that I am now threatening to lock her outside. Steve calls her over to leave me alone. I contemplate what it would be like to go back in time and talk myself out of adopting another pet. 4:40 a.m five minutes before Steve's alarm goes off, she is now on her normal routine of waking him up. She is hungry and craving love. She gets him up and follows him down stairs. I have 2 precious hours before he leaves for work, time to sleep. 6:45 a.m. I feel the gentle grasp of her teeth on my jugular. The dragon is letting me know its time to get up. By 8 a.m. I am walking out the door to go to work and she is sleeping peacefully on the chair. I make sure to wake her up before I go.

Sweet, sweet little devil cat. She is so very lucky that I love her.

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