Friday, June 06, 2008

Ready for their close-up...

I have been remiss in sharing a big event that has recently occurred at my house. WARNING: incoming cute overload! Now, I know that this is primarily a food blog, but if Anna can post hourly photos and video of her new corgi puppy, I guess I'm allowed to follow suit. ;-)

Over Memorial Day weekend, I was outside with a couple of the neighbor boys who I had bribed to repair the fence to the chicken pen. And as I was sitting there, a sweet little kitty started figure-eighting her way around my ankles. Then she jumped up in my lap and compelled me to give her the love while she purred and purred. As I petted her, I realized that she was GREAT with child! I asked the boys where she came from, and they said that she was someone's house cat, but they dropped her off at the barn when she became pregnant. (Dont'cha just love people sometimes?) Well, she was so sweet and so beautiful--a lovely, long-haired calico--that I couldn't bear the thought of her having her babies in the barn where kitten life expectancy is tragically low. So we brought her inside, and though she wisely steers clear of the dogs, she gets along with the other cats just like she belongs here.

Juno, as Cyd appropriately dubbed her, was very skinny, despite her basketball of a belly, so we started trying to fatten her up so that she would be strong enough for the birthing and able to feed her babies properly. Even though she looked like she was about to burst, she didn't seem in a big hurry to have her kittens. Then last Thursday, I came home from work early, and found her curled up in the middle of a big pile of clothes on a vanity/dresser. I reached out to pet her and realized that I was petting three still-damp little heads! Mamacita Juno proceed to pop out two more tiny creatures before all was said and done (ruining a shirt in the process--sorry, Cyd!), and I'm happy to report that mother and all five babies are doing fine. We set them up in an old, soft-sided dog crate with a heated pad underneath, and the fluffy little parasites are quite happy to alternate feeding off the host and sleeping all day long.

The babies are just SO CUTE, I can hardly stand it! They are going to at least be medium, if not long-haired. There is one enormous orange one, one nearly-black tabby, two tabby and white, and perhaps the most darling thing of all, one little "mini-me" calico just like mama. We think we have three boys and two girls (the darkest one and the smaller of the two tabby and whites may be girls, if we can tell what we're looking at, which is quite doubtful). They were a week old yesterday, and at least three of them have their eyes open, and despite their wobbly legs, the little monsters are starting to become too mobile for my comfort level! So I think we're going to have to construct some sort of kitten confinement structure with an exercise pen soon. It's very hard to get good pictures of them because they're so wiggly, but I like these two shots that I snapped today where at least one kitten in each picture seems to be yelling, "Hey! Stop blinding my newly-opened eyes with that %$#@ camera flash!" Tee hee. So if anyone in the greater Plattsburgh area needs to enhance their family with a cute little kitty, I can hook you up toward the end of July.

I wish I could make this food-related, but the most exciting thing coming out of my kitchen right now is leftover stuffed pizza from our favorite place in town, Pizza Bono. You see, I am trying to get all of the planting done before a reported heat wave reaches us this weekend. They are saying it could hit 90 degrees! Isn't that crazy, when people were out covering up their plants last week to protect them from frost? So weird! Anyway, since yesterday afternoon, I have managed to plant 70 (yep, you read that right) different kinds of tomatoes out in the corner of the pasture that the nice dairy farmer behind me lets me use and my next-door neighbor tills for me. So that leaves tomorrow to do the pepper patch, some squashes, and maybe some corn just for shiggles. We'll see how hot it gets and how much my back and legs will withstand--it really sucks to get old. In the meantime, I will leave you with a picture of the gorgeous poppies that are just starting to pop open all over our neighborhood. I hope all of you have gardens to enjoy at this vibrant time of year!


Anna said...


Lisa said...

Even thoiugh I already have two cats, I want one!! I just melted looking at those photos! SO PRECIOUS! Whar an awesome surprise, and kudos to you for taking Mama kitty in to make her comfortable, and help her care for her new babies!