Tuesday, June 20, 2006

1 + 1 = 3?

Just checking my math here… We dropped two kids off, but we came back with three. Head count – one daughter, one son… and one cat. Yep, we’ve added to our family.

So we went to pick up the kids from Memphis and while we were waiting for them to arrive with the grandparents, I told this story to my “other mother.” (You know, the one who took you in and loved on you throughout childhood.)

Last month out of the blue, my daughter asked me if I thought she was responsible. I thought about it and replied, “Yeah, for the most part you are pretty responsible. We have to remind you of a few things, but mostly, you do very well with the tasks given to you.”

She smiled really big and said, “Can I have a pet then?!”

That dirty dog… Trapped by my own daughter… I can’t be mad. It’s something I would have done. Mr. Right and I have always said that we could get a pet when a) we lived in a house b) we could afford it and c) the kids were responsible enough to take care of it.

So I told this story to Lou and she said, “Would you like a really sweet cat? She needs a home…”

Back story for the cat: One Christmas two years ago, Ellen (Lou’s granddaughter) rescued a little kitten that someone had left on the side to the street to die, right by Roger and Lou’s house. They feed, warmed and revived the cat, all the time wondering what they would do with it. Roger’s mother took the cat and loved it. She did all she could to make sure that the cat was healthy and well cared for. But Roger’s mother passed away at the beginning of May. They have been dealing with all the things that comes with a death of a loved one. They have just now been thinking about what to do with the cat when I told my story and said that we will be getting a pet by the end of the summer.

So Mr. Right and I went over to check out the cat. I don’t want a cat if it is just going to ignore me. I want a pet that wants to be petted, who has great character and who will fit into our family. Lou was right! She really was a sweet cat. We fell in love the moment we saw her.

Now the big deal would be that my daughter is allergic to some cats, so we did a test run. We told the kids (after they got there) that we needed to go feed the cat, and the kids had a hay day. They petted her, they loved on her, they talked to her. No reactions to the cat so far. My daughter asked who would take care of the cat now that Tutu (Roger’s mom) was gone. I told her that we would if she and her brother would be willing to care for her. They both were wonderfully surprised and conceded to the tasks.

We tried to come up with a name for her. After throwing several names around (Daughter-Princess; Son – Supercat; Mr. Right – Oreo; me – Memphis), we settled on this one: Tennessee Ellen, but that’s just for when she’s in trouble. We’re calling her Tenni, and she actually comes when called.

It’s been nice adding to our family. Now if we can just train her to not scratch my new couches, we’ll be just fine.


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