Four Cats, One Wood-stove


This morning Old Man Max Cat was sitting statuesque inches from the wood-stove, eyes half closed, soaking in the glowing warmth. I laid down on the rug and called to Lilly Cat to come do her fire dance. She came running downstairs and did three joyful laps around my prone form before settling into a fuzzy love pile nestled against my stomach, the fire warming her belly. Tiger Cat wandered by to see what everybody was up to and flopped down at my head, stretched his legs out long pawing at my nose and lips. We all stayed there basking in the fire light and heat when Shadow Cat delicately stepped around Tiger then sat opposite Max mirroring his posture, nose inches from the stove. What better way to spend some time on a cold blustery winter morning than to warm your bones next to a cozy wood-stove surrounded by contented cats!


Birds In The Snow


This time of year, the bird feeders stay out, no pesky bears to destroy them in the night. The cats love it because at first light when our little feathered friends wake up and need sustenance after the long cold night, the feeders are waiting for them. The cats sit in the front window, whiskers twitching, tails swishing, eyes bright, haunches tense, and making mewing and clicking noises in the back of there throats. The birds and red squirrels taunt the cats too, by hanging out on the rocking chair backs not more than a few inches away, but an still endless eternity through the glass window pane. This morning there were about three inches of fresh snow piled up in the feeder tops, the air must by completely calm as every surface is piled delicately with pure white glittering snow, ready to topple and drift to earth at the slightest disturbance. I can see every tiny spot where a dainty chick-a-dee or junco has perched. There are birds sized indents on the porch railing, the feeder stand, and the branches of the shrubs in front of the porch. The birds are flitting around, noisy and busy, every burst of wings sending a few more snow flakes on their way toward the ground. Its almost like a dance, twittering birds, fresh floating snow flakes, and cold blue early morning light seeping into the world.

Coffee And Doughnuts

12-14-2017 Magic Moment:

Early, early morning, still dark. Why do we wake up at such a ridiculous hour? I will sit on the sofa surfing the internet while it is unlimited until 8am and writing on the laptop. Daylight will slowly creep through the darkness, quietly illuminating the outside world with a blue hue that incrementally grows in intensity, until the sunlight banishes the darkness for another glorious day. I have a steaming cup of fresh coffee and an apple cider doughnut. What more could a person want this early in the morning?! My whole existence is centered around the coffee and sugar explosion, apple sweet melting in my mouth. Aaaaahhhhhhh.

Surprise Snow

11-17-2017 Magic Moment:

Woke up this morning before first light (not as early in the morning this time of year), heard the cold wind blowing outside the window. I often stay in bed after waking and watch the first faint blue light of sunrise slowly illuminate the pre-dawn dark sky behind the bare branches then keep watching in anticipation as it creeps down the hill toward my window. Surprise, there is a scattering of icy crystalline snow on the leaf covered ground. It catches the blue morning light and reflects almost imperceptible purple back at the sleeping bare forest. I know later it will melt under the full force of the sun, even if the temperature doesn’t top freezing, but for now, it is whispering a song of winter in my ears and teasing my eyes with its twinkling sparkle.

Max Under The Covers

10-19-2017 Magic Moment:

Old Man Max Cat has my husband up early every morning. Sometimes I get up with them, other times I stay in bed, curled cozy warm under the down comforter. All the cats get up with Max and run around the house like lunatics (we call them lunacats). Although, if I stay in bed long enough, sometimes one or more cats will come join me in a comfortable cushion of cuddly contentedness. This morning Max came back. Apparently he was trying to help my husband type so he got unceremoniously dismissed from the home office. Old Man Max Cat gingerly jumped up on the bed, back legs scrabbling to get his body all the way up. He isn’t as spry as he used to be so I help him. He then sticks his cold wet nose into the crook of my neck and paws at the top of the blankets. I roll over to get away from that persistent cold wet nose. He walk around to stand in front of my face and howls. He’s deaf now and has no voice modulation. I look him in the eyes and he stares back as if to say “You know what I want. I’m going to win, so you should just give me what I want!”. So I lift the cover and he crawls under, brushing my face with his long furry tail. He executes an about face somewhere near my belly, all silky soft fur. Then creeps up so just his head is out in the air, purring loudly, whiskers tickling my cheeks. I roll so my arm is around him but but supported by the bed so as to not crush him. Completely content, we both drift off to slumber land.

Stars In The Early Morning

10-16-2017 Magic Moment:

Our old cat likes to wake us up around 4:30 am for his morning meal. For a variety of reason, we acquiesce to this demand. I usually clean out the cat litter when I get up and normally wait until it’s light out to take it to the trash. However, this morning, I ventured out into the quiet, frosty darkness, bundled in only a fleece robe over flannel pajamas and wearing wool slippers. My breath bursts forth in little billowing white clouds that quickly dissipate into the night. This late or early all is silent. Night animals are going to sleep and morning animals haven’t awaken yet, and there are no other lights in the houses or on the road. Walking back toward the stairs to go inside, I glance up momentarily and am stunned into stillness like a marble statue. Stars! The stars have my undivided attention. Zillions of brilliant, dazzling, sparkling stars reflecting in my glittering eyes, sensational star song rushes over me, bathes me in starlight. Pure rapture!

Mergansers And Other Birds

10-15-2017 Magic Moment:

I had a glorious walk this morning, up the hollow and back again. I am bundled against the morning chill, as much of the valley stays in shadow until afternoon. Today I saw a plethora of birds. Mergansers were playing in the riffles near the bridge, floating downstream, bobbing on the ripples, then flying back upstream to do it over again. A kingfisher calls out its annoyance of the quiet intrusion of my presence on the road above the creek. It dashes into flight chattering away into the distance. Blue Jays, Crows, and Ravens raucously jeer and heckle as I pass by. Chick-a-dees, Juncos, Titmice, Cedar Waxwings flitter and chitter in the tree branches and underbrush. I see the bright red of a male Cardinal flashing as he flees my company. I know his mate is nearby, but her camouflage hides her well and I do not find her. A Great Blue Heron takes flight, its huge graceful wings flapping wildly, long spindly legs dangling, as it lifts up, flies a short distance, and glides back to stand at the water’s edge. I can never be lonely walking this road, because I am never actually alone!