April 28, 2010
Clara and Lucy came to us about two years apart. Clara's mama was rescued by another family from our school and Santa surprised the kids with a tiny kitten on Christmas Eve. Hence, the name Clara, from The Nutcracker. Clara, our Christmas kitty. She's four now and definitely my cat. She'll tolerate the kids, but she's my girl. Wherever I am, she's there. Even if it's sleeping on my head at night.
Lucy's sister was adopted by Keile's friend. So, of course, Keile insisted that we adopt Lucy. Did I ever mention that my daughter is a sucker for, I mean has a heart for, ALL stray animals. She tells me that she's going to live with me forever and that we're going to be cat ladies together. Over my dead body. I love my cats, but c'mon. Anyway, Lucy is a tortoise shell with one bright red spot in the middle of her forehead. Lucille Ball. She's everyone's cat and no one's cat, very independent.
Last Christmas, Keile wanted, as one of her gifts, to buy items from PetSmart and donate them to Wayside Waifs, a local pet shelter. I found her request so incredibly unselfish and I was happy to comply. This girl understood the true meaning of Christmas. So, the Monday before Christmas, I took Keile out of school and the two of us headed to PetSmart. A hundred dollars later, she felt she had what she needed to make enough puppies' and kitties' wishes come true. Then we made the trek out to Wayside Waifs. I had specifically scheduled our visit on a Monday because I knew that was the one day they didn't do pet adoptions. I was no idiot. I was not about to be coerced into another mouth to feed.
We were met by the community relations director of the shelter who gratefully took our donations, then led us on a tour through the facility. We stopped first in the cat house where some were roaming and some were separated in little rooms with screen doors. Keile went into one of the rooms and sat down on the floor. This sweet little thing named Ashley immediately started rubbing up against her and crawled into her lap. The kitten wasn't about to move and looked up at me with eyes that said, "I dare you." The director lady was brave enough to break up that little party and led us into the dog area. Welcome to the Jungle! Wow, I had never heard so much noise. I don't know how they ever got any sleep. We saw the rest of the building and, before we left, Keile wanted to say goodbye to Ashley.
She sat back down in the little room and I could hear Ashley purring from inside the screen. "Whew, it's a good thing we came on a Monday," I whispered to the director. I was so proud of myself. "You know what," she might as well have blasted over the loud speaker, "We can make an exception for you!" My daughter's head popped up from nuzzling Ashley's fur. Ashley's eyes said, "I've got you now." And that's how we ended up with Noel (Ashley), our second Christmas kitty.
Who did I say was a sucker?