Like a walk through the country side living on a small farm is full of daily surprises, sometimes wonderful and amazing, and other times puzzling and sad. I hope you will walk with me as I live out my dream of living on this tiny farm. You will come to know the dogs, cats, Shetland sheep and chickens that make up this farm and what goes into keeping them happy and healthy. Come and join the journey with me.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Happy 1st Birthday Cheetos!

(Contest winner announced at the end of this post!)

Can you believe it? The "kittens" are one year old today. It was a rocky year at times, but we've hung in there and the good times outweighed the bad... mostly! It's been an adjustment for sure. I figure though that time is now on my side as the kittens continue to mature and (hopefully) slow down a little bit. I still marvel at how six litter mates can all have such different personalities. People ask me who my favorite is, and I would have to say they all are. Each one has their own quirks and character and I love (and sometimes dislike) things about each one of them. I'm posting photos in no particular order --except for silly sisters first, then the mostly rotten boys. For those just recently reading my blog, this little journey all began when a very pregnant calico cat wandered in off the street and into my Mom's barn and subsequently had six kittens. You can read more posts beginning in August 2009 in the blog archives, if you'd like more back story. So... without further adieu let's celebrate "The Year of the Kittens"!

Tempe--can't you just already see the Torti 'tude?

Tempe

Tempe is a Torti, which explains allot. She really is a good girl most of the time, but my she is busy. Constantly poking into my business, and everywhere I look there she is. Sometimes she can be very loving, cuddly and sweet and other times she looks offended and stomps off when I think she needs some petting. She likes butter, cheez balls, and sitting in the bathroom trashcan (close the lid please, she says), not sharing all the new toys and climbing to the highest places she can find--and of course micro-managing me. Tempe weighed 3.4 ounces when born and now is the smallest (weight wise) of the girls at 7 lbs 3.4 ounces.


Baby Verity

Verity--Ninja Cat

Verity is a silly little thing. It took her a long time to become a cuddle bug, but she is now officially one of the best. She is often torn between freedom and being cuddly. I often call her Ninja kitty as she likes to dart around and make sneak attacks. For a long time 'someone' would run out, slap my leg and disappear. I blamed Tempe because she was always there, and no one else was around. Finally Verity the Ninja kitty made a mistake and I saw her out of the corner of my eye while she was in the middle of her covert mission. Verity also likes to ask questions. MemPH? Asking questions back elicits more conversation from her. Verity is the shortest (frame wise) of the kittens, and while she started out at 3.4 ounces, she now weighs in at a shocking 8 lbs 14.2 ounces, making her the largest, er, chubbiest of the girls.

Trinity

Princess Trinity

Of all the kittens Trinity is the least affectionate. She occasionally likes to be loved on, but you almost have to chase her down or catch her unaware for her to let you near. Mostly I think she is just very shy. Cursed with a squish-ably cute face she does have to endure some loving. She caused many grey hairs for me in her young kitten days, when I would have everyone else up for the night then spend many minutes trying to trick her in. Trints also went through a bout of stomach issues and became very sickly for awhile. Because of this she was allowed more freedom before the other kittens--getting to spend the days out with the big boys (Meshach and Sage). She has never forgotten this and I think Princess applies to her quite well, as she enjoys her special status as one of 'the big boys'. She also asks questions and mews dramatically if I'm slow to meet her expectations. She started out at 3.2 ounces and now weighs 7 lbs 5 ounces.


Chaco

Chaco-Paco-Pito-Pie

Chaco is a big boy--long and lanky. For the longest time he would have very little to do with the nonsense of being petted and loved on. Then one night he melted down and demanded attention--at 4 a.m. Ever since then he wakes me up around this time, purring and kneading and stomping all over me. I discourage him mightily and often 'accidentally' push him off the bed--repeatedly. He always comes back and at least has learned not to stomp over me too much. Now he walks up and down the bed beside me and occasionally reaches out and does a quick knead with one paw...reminding me of the show Monk where he walks along and has to touch everything. Chaco loves food and is pretty good natured. Once in awhile he trashes his sisters, but otherwise gets along well with everyone. He has a crush on Sage and likes to imitate him. Weighing 3.6 ounces to start with and he now weighs 9 lbs 7.6 ounces, making him the lightweight of the boys. He was initially the biggest kitten of the bunch.


Gabriel

Gabe

Of the entire litter, Gabe has to be the absolute busiest one of the bunch. Fortunately he is easily entertained and finds many things to keep himself amused. Most of it harmless. Despite his I'm So Cool James Dean expression he can be an awful big love bug. He also is very, very helpful, especially with making the bed. He talks allot. They get treats a couple times a day and every time I even look towards where the treats are kept he runs over there and stands on his hind legs and yells--pleeeese, pleeeese, pleeese! His philosophy seems to be it never hurts to ask! If it wasn't so funny it would be pretty annoying. Gabe also plays allot by himself, and will often talk to himself in the process--loudly. It used to alarm me as it sounded as if someone was hurt...but no. He also takes toys into the bathtub and some of the awfullest thumping around ensues as he plays wildly with the toy of the moment. Unfortunately when I named Gabe (Gabriel for his angel wings on his back) I didn't take into consideration several things--one he would be a permanent resident of the household and secondly that Gabe sounds an awful lot like Sage when you are getting on to some certain cat. After Sage swore at me several times for getting on to him (yes he really does this) when he wasn't doing anything, Gabe got shortened to Gabs or the longer version of Gab-re-ella (why I don't know) when he is being scolded. Gabe weighed 3.2 ounces to begin with and now weighs a hefty 11 lbs 1.6 ounces. He has the longest skinny legs, skinny butt and skinny tail, so I expect he may end up even larger.

Baby Noah

Noah Now

Lastly we have Mr. No. Noah is the biggest of the kittens--height and breadth! His favorite pastime is eating, followed closely by napping. Noah has had some difficulties but he doesn't let that slow him down. When he was about four months old he began to have seizures, possibly due to an overdose of Advantage. At first they were severe and almost constant, but now he has a seizure about every 8 to 10 days. From this he has some residual effects--poor closeup paw/eye skills and just a little 'differentness' to him. However, he is pretty interactive especially if there is a chance food is involved. I work with him often to improve his people skillls. ;-) He isn't real affectionate, but does like a good petting at times. He also likes to lay next to me on the bed, and it's even better in his eyes if Meshach is there to provide another body to snuggle against. Sometimes his off switch to wrestling malfunctions so he tends to be very rough. For some reason Sage has taken exception to him and occasionally follows him around swearing, while Noah tries to disappear into the woodwork. Noah is a big boy and when he thinks he is going to be caught and picked up it is pretty funny to see him trying to scurry and hide. Noah's best buddy and heavy duty wrestling partner is his brother Gabe. Noah started out at a petite 3.2 ounces and now weighs in at 13 lbs 2.6 ounces, making him the biggest of the Kittens. Sage still is the biggest kitty in the house, but at 13 lbs 15.2 ounces it may not be long before Noah passes him by.

Here are a couple shots of the kittens---first at a few days old in their box and then two taken more recently. It's hard to get them all in one photo anymore--but between these two shots they are all there. They are definitely a snugly bunch and still like to pile up with each other at times. It's just second nature to them, and this has worked out well for Meshach too, as he has always liked to snuggle and it's been awhile since he had another cat around that would snuggle up to him. Sage looks at them like they are crazy and that they have crossed a big line when they try to plop down next to him!


And here is Butterfly looking quite shell shocked a few days after randomly popping out six kittens all over her kitty condo--including on the upper shelving. Butterfly managed to do all the necessary things to raise six healthy kittens, but her heart wasn't much in it, and she never looked back once she was weaned from the kits.

And finally here is Butterfly today---having made a full circle--from being homeless and hungry--to having kittens--to finally being spayed and now living fat and sassy in my Mom's barn and being spoiled rotten.


Yep. It's been a year. I would never have thought that my two cat household would explode like it did, but the joy bring and the laughter they cause makes them worth the trouble. Here's to many more years little ones.

Thank you to everyone who entered the kitty Calendar contest! There were twelve entrants. I copied each name onto a slip of paper, put it in a baggie and brought it to work today, where my co-worker drew the winner's name. I had thought about having the kittens do the drawing, but the thought overwhelmed me. ;-) And the winner is...drum roll please.. Vicki Lane! Who has to be the luckiest person around with these contests! Vicki the calendar is en route from the printer to my house and I will send it on when it gets here. I hope you enjoy it! Thanks again everyone, I so enjoyed reading your rescue stories. There may be another contest at the end of the year/January featuring a similar prize (calendar) with the dogs.... Stay tuned.

10 comments:

AJ-OAKS said...

First, congrats to Vicki!
Oh my gosh I just love all your ktties. It would be so hard to pick just one favorite. Each has such a personality that shines.
Loved all the pics and the stories that went with each.
Happy birthday to each and every one of your beautiful kitties.

Kathy said...

Tammy, I had "Happy Tears" as I read this post! You will never know how much I appreciate that you stepped up and have taken this little family to your heart as your own. (I only wish I had been able to keep all of Daisy's kittens. One regret I will never overcome.)
I am a firm believer that Someone sends us certain animals in our lives. Animals to share our lives and add to the quality of our lives. In this post, I can feel the love you have for this little mob of kittens - as well as for Mesach, Sage, Boone, Ashley, ...well, this list could go on into the sheep as well.
You and your animals have added some joy into my life, whether you know it or not. :) And I so appreciate what you did for this little family as well as what they have done for YOU.
Happy Birthday, Kittens! And may this next year be full of purrs, cat-piles, sneak attacks,and much, much love for you all and your mom, Tammy!

Sharrie said...

I think it is just wonderful that someone knows her cats so well that she can write that much information about each one. They are very lucky little kitties.

Louise said...

So, the little kittens have turned into cool cats. I enjoyed every one of your little stories about them. They sure have landed in clover.

Happy Birthday Kitties!

Vicki Lane said...

Oh, my! I'm delighted! I really feel like I know these guys and it'll be fun to have them on a calendar. Thanks so much, you crazy cat lady, you!

吳沛黃以富民 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Nancy K. said...

Happy Birthday kitties! You got the best birthday gift of all by finding the home that you have and getting to grow up together. Lucky kittens, indeed!

;-)

kristi said...

What a wonderful post on all of the kittens! Darn cats are dear to my heart also and each of mine comes with a little story too:) It is heart warming to know they all have a good home!

John Gray jgsheffield@hotmail.com said...

hello from a fellow small holder from north wales UK

lovely blog.... I have enjoyed browsing

Tammy said...

AJ--they really are all special (and sometimes little turkeys) in their own way. I don't think I could pick a favorite.
Kathy, I do understand how you feel--the brief time Gabe and Noah were gone were very hard and I felt like I had failed them on some level, even though I had placed them in a 'good' home.
Hi Sharrie, glad you to see you again! It's hard not to know they personalities when they are ALWAYS poking around in my business. ha
Thanks Louise, Kristi and Nancy--they've been a blessing to me too.
Vicki--congrats! I hope you enjoy it. It'll be arriving soon.
Thanks for stopping by John--it looks like you have your hands full with your own menagerie!
Tammy