Bumbledore: A Continuous Joy

Two years ago, we adopted our rescue cat, Bumbledore. Last year, I shared his story, including how far he’d come, especially since the start of pandemic telework. Now, another year later, he’s continued to improve by leaps and bounds.

Any of you who follow me on Instagram already know he’s become a cuddle monster. Every morning, he sits on my lap anywhere from 10-30 minutes, just enjoying my company and some pets. I make sure to post a photo to my story each day. I often joke that Bumbledore pays rent through cuddles and social media content.

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Making Life Colorful

I’ve wanted to paint my stair risers in a rainbow for about a year now, and for the last 4-5 months, I’ve been thinking of painting the kitchen cabinets as well.

With our financial situation back in hand by the end of March, we went out to choose and buy paint. I’ve been industrially painting ever since.

Now that I’m done, I’m delighted with the results. It’s almost hard to believe we had a bland kitchen for so long.

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Ritz: Shy Guy to World Class Thief

As Dante, Bumbledore, and Sandy have all had dedicated posts, it’s only fair that Ritz get one as well. However, you should read Dante’s post before this one, as I won’t be repeating much information.

Early Life

I didn’t interact much with Ritz before we abduct — erm… adopted him from “the streets.” Technically, it was an under-porch den, but that doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue. Jim describes him as “very cautious and standoffish.”

On the day we’d planned to catch the siblings, we managed to nab Angus without too much trouble, and wrangle him into the carrier. We foolishly thought that, because they were small, we could fit them into a single carrier without much trouble. Oh, the naivete.

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Dante: Feral Kitten to “Evil Genius”

A few posts back, I wrote about silver linings, mentioning our kittens. Those two are such sweethearts. Dante and Ritz have such distinct personalities, there’s never a dull moment around the house.

In the Beginning

Dante, especially, is a unique little fruitloop. He started life as an unnamed feral kitten with 3 brothers fed by half the neighborhood. Jim, however, was one of their two primary benefactors, and decided to name them Angus, an all-black kitty; Boo, a grey tabby; Ritz, our posh tuxedo boy; and Sparky, the fancy, multicolor tabby (later Dante).

From foreground to background: Boo, Ritz, Sparky/Dante (left), Angus, and Mama Moon.
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I Learned to Drive Stick Shift

Some of you may know that I used to be terrified of driving. I didn’t get my license until a couple of months after my 29th birthday. And learning to drive really only diminished my fear, it didn’t eliminate it. In the intervening nearly 4 years, I’ve hardly driven at all. In fact, I didn’t drive on the road at all until December of last year.

That’s because we only have one car, and it has a manual transmission. Jim tried, right after I got my license, to teach me to drive stick. But, he’d driven stick for long long that it was all muscle memory for him. He had trouble explaining to me what to do. And he loves his car so much that it freaked him out when I keep stalling it out.

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2020’s Silver Linings

Despite everything that has happened recently, and my last post, I still want to share this, because it holds true. Here’s hoping there are more, and larger silver linings to 2021.

So, 2020 is finally over, after an indeterminate number of years. There’s no denying that it was a terrible year for many. Or that it was a year unlike any ever seen. And, in some ways, it’s not over yet. We’re still dealing wtih most of the biggest issues of the past year.

However, among the plentiful negatives, for me at least, there were little nuggets of positive that keeps 2020 from being an unmentionable black mark in the past. I’d like to take a post to look back on the positive silver linings of 2020 as an uplifting start to 2021.

#1 & #2: It’s a Tie

My top two items tie for first: adopting our kittens and Bumbledore’s improvement.

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Bumbledore: the Heartbreakingly Beautiful Story of a Rescue Cat

Today marks one year since we brought Bumble home. In that time, he has completely transformed. He still has a long road of mental recovery ahead of him, but even if he weren’t to improve any further, I’m convinced he’d live a happy, fulfilled life. 

Before I jump into Bumble’s story, I want to say that King Street Cats (KSC) is fabulous. They are an extremely successful and well-regarded shelter specializing in “difficult to adopt” cats — like those that are shy, older, or have mobility issues, among other things. Anyone looking for a cat in the Washington, DC area should look into KSC. They rely on volunteers and donations, and you can easily help support them by setting KSC as your charity on AmazonSmile online and by setting up your Amazon app to shop using AmazonSmile. I’m not affiliated with KSC in any way, I just believe that strongly in their mission.

Back to Bumble, he was a rather damaged cat when we adopted him. He’d been through some horrible things in his life, and that’s just what we have proof of. It’s amazing how far he’s come in just one year. I’ve never known a sweeter cat, nor one more desirous of affection (though scared to ask for it). I hope he’ll continue to improve and flourish. My goal is to turn him into a lap cat — we’ll see if that happens. Regardless of what the future brings, I want to share his story with us so far.

I’ve included lots of photos and videos to break up this super-long post. Make sure to turn up your audio so you can hear what’s going on in the videos.

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Sandy’s 10th Anniversary

Grab a drink and a snack for this one, it’s long. But my boy has been a part of my life for 10 years now, and he deserves a proper story. What follows is a recounting of some of the major events of my life as a cat mom, including some of the unique things my little boy has done.

Fair warning, I’ve included a few sad bits, so you may want a tissue or two. I tried to title everything in such a way that you can tell if the section will be fun or sad.

The Meeting

Ten years and two days ago, I went to the Animal Welfare League of Arlington to look at cats. The plan was to window shop, see what kinds of cats and what ages were available. I’d never had a cat before, but I’d always wanted a marmalade — orange and white — tabby.

Once at the shelter, right near the front of the cat room, I found a beautiful marmalade tabby, seemingly pulled right out of my dreams. I eagerly asked to take it to the meeting room but the shelter worker warned me that several people had played with the cat already that day. It had only arrived at the shelter a couple of days before and hadn’t settled in yet. The poor thing cowered in its cage and hissed at the shelter worker when she tried to coax it out. She didn’t push it, instead advising me to try again early the next day before the cat had been in and out of its cage several times.

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A Peek into my Brain

My brain bounces around a lot. A side effect of that is ending up with a significant amount of random thoughts floating through my mind. I’d like to share some of them with you.

Most of these posts will be short, probably averaging around 300 words. I expect they will be like journal entries, potentially written in stream-of-consciousness style.

If this sounds like something that will be of interest to you, consider this intro post an easy way to find the future posts. You can view them all here, or you can choose the Random Thoughts option in the category drop down list on the sidebar — to the bottom right on desktop, below on mobile.

You can subscribe to my blog to get every post delivered to you. Also, consider joining my Facebook group or following me on Twitter. I’ll share the posts there as well.

My Wedding

This post is a long time coming, and I don’t really know why I’ve delayed writing it. This won’t be like the in-depth posts you’re used to me writing. Rather, it’s a photo-heavy overview to provide a little glimpse at a very special day in my life.

As you may or may not know, I got married in March. Avid fountain pen enthusiasts that my husband and I are, we decided on a fountain pen themed wedding.

We chose our wedding colors based on our favorite coordinating inks — Diamine Aqua Blue and Organics Studio Jane Austen.

Organics Studio Jane Austen and Diamine Aqua Blue Organics Studio Jane Austen and Diamine Aqua Blue Ink Bottles

Our invitations were pen-related, and, of course, addressed in fountain pen.

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