Journey 302: National Cat Day

I shared about my dog Payton, now deceased, back a couple of months ago on National Dog Day. At that time I promised to celebrate National Cat Day when it rolled around. Today is that day! I love dogs and cats. After my old dog and even older cat passed away a few years ago, I refrained from adopting more pets. I’m busy, I told myself and they require a lot of care.  I hate losing them. It seemed better not to have a pet. But life intervened, bringing me a little family of cats that needed me. I’m a cat owner, or as my family likes to tease, a crazy cat lady. Although I don’t think owning four cats qualifies me for that title!

This one is Shy Boy, one of the litter of three that I adopted when their mother brought them to me. (Momba has since moved on, after being spayed. Having her offspring around didn’t appeal to her.) Shy and his sisters will be three years old next June. He is affectionate, and loves to curl up on an empty lap. He’s very vocal, “talking” back when spoken to. 

Shy Boy’s tail is so long and heavy that it curls over his back. He can’t hold it upright. I joke that he has lemur DNA, as his tail is almost prehensile. Shy is still timid around strangers, but he allows the neighbor to pet him and doesn’t run and hide as much when family visits. Shy continues to have a wide eyed look that is very endearing. If I’m sitting in the garden, he’s most likely to be on my lap. 


Angel is a beautiful gray cat with very dense fur. She has a thick undercoat that causes her to be sensitive to hot weather. Although she loves being outside, and prefers to lounge on the front porch during the day, I bring her indoors during the hottest summer days. Angel is the quietest of the cats, very rarely making any sound at all. If she meows it’s because she wants something or her feeling are hurt. 

She’s a cuddler too and she’s snoozing on my lap now as I work on my blog. She is also the most social of the cats and just wants everyone to get along. She and Marco will snuggle together for a nap. While Shy seems to be part lemur, Angel acts like she has dog DNA. She’s the only cat among my four that begs for people food. She will eat anything. And like a dog, she will lick my hand. When she sleeps, she tends to lay on her back or end up in strange contortions. 



Rilynn is very petite, and very much her own girl. Although the smallest, she’s the scrappiest and the most likely to go off on her own for the day. She doesn’t like to snuggle with the other cats although occasionally I’ll find her lying near big brother Shy. She very rarely sits on my lap but she will follow me around, mewing for attention, and enjoys having her ears scratched. 

This little girl has the dreamiest eyes, that always seem to be slightly unfocused. I wonder sometimes if she sees well. As I approach her, her head bobbles about as if she’s trying to get a visual fix. Or she’s just odd. Either way, I adore her. Rilynn likes to find strange places to sleep…on a shelf, beneath a blanket or in a box. Her current fave napping spot is curled within the wreath I just removed from the front door. I’ve postponed packing it away because of her!



Last is the youngest cat, Marco, born to Momba in a second litter. He will be two years old in March. Although the baby of the family, he’s the heaviest, because he never hesitates to eat again with a brother or sister, even if he just ate. His life motto seems to be, “Never do anything alone.” He likes to be with the other cats or with people. Marco prefers to be touching someone, anyone else. He is the cat most likely to sleep with me at night, with one paw resting on my hand, or touching my side. 

As big as he is, he still thinks he’s the baby brother. His meows sound like the cries of a six week old kitten. He’s fooled me more than once into thinking there was a kitten under the porch, crying. Then out he jumps. Marco is very bright. When he was younger, I most often said his name LOUDLY, followed by…”stop that” as he teased his siblings. If I snapped my fingers and pointed to the ottoman in the living room, he would jump up and sit there, in time out. I don’t have to scold him any more, as he’s settled down considerably. But he still puts himself in time out occasionally. 


These are my fur babies. I didn’t want pets but that didn’t matter. Into my life they have come and I love and appreciate each of them. They bring me joy and make me laugh, keep me company as I work in the garden and love me unconditionally. 

Kristin Cast observed, “Cats choose us; we don’t own them.” I have to agree. Cats are too independent to be owned, and I like that about them. I’m grateful that Shy Boy, Angel, Rilynn and Marco have chosen me. And that their mama chose me initially, to care for them. I am honored. 


Day 155: Hug Your Cat Day


A year ago, I didn’t have any pets. My 22 year old cat, AJ, passed away about five years ago, preceded the year before by my beloved dog, Payton, who also died at home of old age. Today, I have FIVE cats. So how appropriate to celebrate Hug Your Cat Day today, as my first.

I wonder about the person who created this unique holiday, because as anyone knows who has cats, they just looove to be picked up and squeezed tightly….not! They do enjoy a cuddle or snoozing on their human’s lap, when it is their idea. So today, I made sure each of the fur babies received some extra lovin’ and cuddling and had their pic taken to share on the blog.

So here are the recipients of today’s hugs:


This is Momba, formerly known simply as Mama Cat. She started the transition from pet free to multiple cat owner. I’ve shared in previous posts the story of this cat who was abandoned in my neighborhood. I fed her and she eventually brought her three kittens to me to feed as well. When the weather turned very cold last winter, I welcomed the little family into my home. When Momba was satisfied her babies were okay, she left again. Although she showed up frequently to eat, she would not stay around or come inside, until late one night when she desperately wanted in. She disappeared into a closet and by morning had two tiny black kittens. Except I didn’t discover the second kitten until late the next evening, when mama cat’s strange behavior led me to him, nearly dead on the floor, lost behind a curtain. I saved that little guy and he now has a home with a new family. Momba was supposed to be adopted, but her almost owner decided that her work schedule was not the best for adopting a cat at this time, and changed her mind. I respect that decision. I’ve decided to keep her. She will be spayed shortly, so since this was her last litter, she needed a name other than mama cat. Momba is what came to me, so Momba she is. A sweet cat who is adjusting to being cared for and loved, she has a forever home here.


This is Shy Boy, one of the three kittens from last year. He and his sisters had been born outside in the neighborhood, and were not used to human contact. This tom was the shiest of the three. It took weeks before he would timidly allow me to touch him right before he ate on my front porch. He would tip his little head back and watch me with wide eyes, knowing I was going to pet him before he could enjoy his meal. He still has that wide-eyed look, but he has become such a cuddler. He is the sweetest male cat, gentle and even tempered. When his mama had two more little toms, Shy Boy, who has been neutered, was the teenager who stepped up to baby sit when his mom needed a break from the kittens. He carefully watched the babies and patiently allowed them to crawl all over him and tug on his ears and tail. Shy Boy is a creature of habit. He goes outside for a morning stroll and playtime in the back garden and then returns to the house between 10 and 11 in the morning for his nap on my bed.


Rilynn, named by Aubrey, who gave this kitten her own middle name, is the smallest of the three teen cats. With her spotted face, she looks like she fell nose first into a pot of black ink. Although she is the smallest of the three siblings, Rilynn is the most brave. From my first glimpse of her under my front porch, she was unafraid and bounced up to greet me, purring when I petted her. She has dreamy eyes and always looks sleepy. She will cuddle briefly and then she’s on to the next adventure.  My office is her preferred napping spot. Her curiosity and lack of fear have made her the explorer. Her brother and sister used to hang back to see what Rilynn did and if she was safe before they would explore with her. She is often a loner, content to go her own way, although she’s always up for some playful interaction on her own terms.


Angel is the different one in the group. She has beautiful gray fur and her eyes and nose are the same smoky color. I feel bad because for quite a while, I thought Angel was a boy! Her angular face and no nonsense attitude, plus the fact that she and Shy Boy always hung out together made me think they were brothers. I saved myself embarrassment BEFORE I took the three to be spayed and neutered by figuring it out before hand. Angel is very vocal and was the slowest to accept her new baby brothers. She has become my girl. She is the one most often curled up on my lap. She dislikes my laptop computer and doesn’t care that it is already on my lap. She finds a way to curl up with me anyway. Angel has a fascination with rocks and likes to find one and bat it around. While both her brother and sister have caught a baby rabbit (that was released after being captured), Angel proudly brought a piece of Styrofoam to Greg and me one night while we were working in the backyard. She was making her “Look what I did” meow, obviously happy with her “capture”.


And this is the baby in the family, little Marco, formerly called Grabfoot by me. He likes to use his left front paw to swat at everything and grab at passing feet or legs. His brother left to go to another home, but no one opted to adopt this little guy, so I decided to keep him as well.  Aubrey gave him a proper name. He is 10 weeks old, playful, adventurous and easy going. He adores his older brother, Shy Boy. They play together and often sleep curled up together. Although Angel was slow to accept him, Marco prefers her next after Shy Boy.

Each of these cats has brought joy into my life. I am happy to hug on them today, and every day. And if one does not have a cat to hug on this special day, then June is also National Adopt a Cat Month. There are many, many kittens and cats available at pet shelters, waiting for a forever home and someone to love them. Please consider one of them, and have your furry babies spayed or neutered! And, share a picture or story of your huggable cat with me!