For Jessie


It had been a long hard road just to get here together. Jessie had been so ill, and so afraid, for so very long. After all their years together, she alone was now settled into a nursing home.

But, he knew just what to say; he knew what she needed to hear. This marriage vow renewal was the very best medicine.

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Clyde at 9 weeks

Clyde lives life to the fullest. He has always been this way. In his short six months so far, he has been an inspiration. Through every health challenge he has experienced, Clyde just bucks up and powers through it. He never complains about treatment, medication, or pain. He will always have health issues, as his heart works hard to keep up with his spirit. Clyde continues to meet every challenge with enthusiasm and verve. Whether he is playing or resting, Clyde is all in. I think we can learn from Clyde and his pure zest for Life…no matter what it brings to us!

Clyde at six months

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Checkin’ on Clyde


Clyde had his follow-up appointment with the vet today. The Lasix did not help the fluid retention. The heart and lung inflammation were somewhat worse, so he was given an injection. He also has a new prescription to help his heart work better, not harder. Clyde had a very busy morning, as you can see here.

Clyde wanted to say hello and give an update. But, he is worn out, now.
It is naptime for this little guy. Happy dreams, Sweet Boy.


Today was “the day” for the minions. They are five-and-a-half months old. 5 ½ months. They are big enough and mature enough to have their “procedures”, but they are still babies. We planned the procedures so they could be together. And, then it all went awry.
Bee went through her surgery and micro-chipping like a real trooper. She is very healthy. She is also smart, cooperative, and a little lady.

Clyde was microchipped, but he cannot be neutered. During his pre-surgical exam, there was some question about his heart. X-rays showed that Clyde has a very enlarged heart. I am quite stunned at the films of Clyde’s heart.
Dr. D. took films of Bee’s heart to compare to Clyde’s. Bee’s heart is normal in size and shape. Clyde’s heart is more than twice the size it should be, and is very abnormal in shape and appearance. Clyde’s lungs are also affected, showing congestion associated with the enlarged heart. In addition to this, his liver is also compromised. His liver enzymes are quite elevated.
Brother and sister stayed together. I picked them both up after meeting with Dr. D. They came home, and were very happy to be reunited with the others. Bee is groggy, but sleeping it off with Stella. Clyde took his place on the top of the cat tree, after being reassured by Mom that all is well.

For now, Clyde has no idea that anything is wrong. He has started Lasix treatment. He will be monitored very closely. Our goal is to stabilize him. We want to make him comfortable so he can play and just be Clyde. If we can do that, he may live for (up to) five years. This will take him at an early age. We know that.
We are heartbroken for Clyde. He has had more than his share of ills. They are not connected, either. He is a trooper to have gone through all of this with a strong spirit. We are proud of our Sweet Boy. He is total confidence and never gives up. He has an attitude of, “I got dis!” He is full of love for everyone: human, cat, dog. And, he deserves love and happiness in return. Clyde, “we got dis”, Sweet Boy.

The Regift

Tom sat silently, watching Mary put small bits of paper into a beautiful Christmas box. When finished wrapping the box, she was satisfied that it was filled with so many scribbled scraps. On each paper scrap was a Christmas memory that Tom and Mary had shared.

These priceless memories were meaningful to both Mary and Tom. As Tom’s memory faded into illness, these paper scraps would help her give Christmas back to him. 

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Celebrating Maggie P.

Maggie came into my life just as she was meant to do. It was by accident that I found her. Full of life and cattitude, she helped me to heal after some sadness. You had to love Maggie, she insisted.
Maggie is a pedigreed Maine Coon, born to a top breeder. Her registration papers show her name as Magnolia Pearl, though her professional, “show” name was different (it was Annie, like mine). She is from the South, so she became Magnolia, a beautiful white flower. It is the tradition for a polydactyl Maine Coon to have a name with a P in it. We chose Pearl, in honour and tribute to Purrl, also a polydactyl. Purrl crossed The Bridge in 2008.

Maggie P, as CFA 2008-2009 Champion
Maggie is the 2008-2009 CFA Best Household Cat. Maggie could only be shown in the Household Pet division, as she is a polydactyl. Many Maine Coons have the natural polydactyly gene. Unfortunately, CFA cat shows frown on the gene, even though it occurs naturally in some breeds. At one time, almost half of all Maine coon cats were polydactyl.
We were able to see Maggie’s last two shows. The first time we met her, she charmed us as much as she did the judges. At just over a year old, she had spent her entire life in cat shows. She knew how to work people, and she knew we were smitten with her. We bonded with that wonderfully expressive face, the charm, and certainly the cattitude. We loved Maggie for who she was, and we still do.

At her last show, she had already wrapped up her Title. However, the rules specified that she go through the same steps as the other cats. That day, she was going through an elimination round when we arrived. As soon as Maggie saw us, she recognized us. She turned to the judge with her trademark diva expression and hissed at the judge. He immediately dismissed her for the day. It didn’t matter, she already had clinched the title: 2008-2009 CFA Best Household Cat, Midwest Region 6. Maggie officially was retired from show life and went to her forever Home with us.
Maggie had never seen a dog before. She met three that day. She was shocked and a bit concerned. She wanted to hide but never showed aggression. Within a day, she was following the dogs and talking to them. This is something that Maggie always does: talks…a lot.

Since that first day, Maggie has worked her way up from being the Rookie, to being the one with the most seniority. She has welcomed both Shelties, Stella and Kenzie, into the family. She loves dogs. She really helped Kenzie adjust, too. Maggie also has helped me raise many orphaned kittens and bunnies. Maggie has a very confident, calming, and nurturing way about her. Orphaned babies really respond to her.

Make no mistake, though, Maggie still is a diva. She is even more beautiful, inside and out. She knows she is beautiful and loves to be told. She is smart, sweet, silly, and she still has serious cattitude, too. She will go out of her way for attention, throwing things on the floor which always works! She has broken countless things over the years. But, we love her, just exactly as she is. Everyone loves Maggie. To know her is to love her. It is just that simple.

Today Maggie P. is ten years old. She has serious, chronic health issues, and she sleeps most of the time. Her heart is quite enlarged and continues to weaken. The growth in her throat/palate continues with its issues, too. These are things that Maggie has accepted, and we must, as well.

Maggie has lived a very full, and happy life. I don’t think she would change a thing. She knows she is loved as unconditionally as she loves. Maggie P. has always been special, and as she ages, it becomes even more obvious. 

~Happy Birthday, Maggie P.~
with love, always, from Mom & Dad, 
Stella, Kenzie, Grizelda, Chloe Jo, 
George, and the minions: Bee & Clyde

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