Monday, April 20, 2009

Close the Windows!

Yesterday was one of those days when I wondered why in the world I breed Maine Coons. There are the days when images of cuteness and fun just ooze, like in this photo where our Golden Retriever, Chardonnay, cleans up the kittens after Kelsey has given them a bottle.

Yesterday started like any other day. Kelsey wanted her boyfriend Erik to come over but one of the conditions of such a visit was that they continue to work on cleaning out her bedroom. It was nice spring day so we had all the windows wide open to enjoy it. Kelsey was supposed to have cleaned her room before Erik came over, but this task proved too daunting (can we say filth so deep that I tease her about a homeless man named Fred who lives undetected under her bed?) Kelsey's response when I nagged her about cleaning her room was that it was too much work and she wanted the Clutter Guy from Oprah to do it for her.
With the boyfriend to "help her", Kelsey got easily distracted with telling stories about the lost treasures she was finding. "THAT'S where that shirt (necklace, CD, etc.) was! I've been looking for that since last year." Erik was pretty useless in doing anything because he apparently is unable to stand or sit without leaning on Kelsey with his arms wrapped around her for support. This subjects the two of them to endless sarcastic comments from Jay and me. "Kelsey, it's no wonder your posture is so pathetic from having to hold up that Erik tumor."
Kelsey has a tendency to be quite silly and childlike when Erik is over so she reacted like a 6-year-old when she "found" a toy. It was a small army type figure attached to a cheap parachute, the kind you might get out of a bubble gum machine for 50 cents. I offered to trash it to which of course Kelsey insisted that no, the parachute toy was really cool. Tossing him in the air wasn't exciting enough however so the next thing you know Kelsey has taken the screen off her window, ordering Erik not to drop it to the ground 2 stories below. The parachute toy went out the window, causing Kelsey to squeal in delight when it landed in the flower bed near the front door.

Of course, the next task was to try to fit the screen back in the window properly. Our window screens are designed to only come out completely for cleaning, relying on fitting the two little latches on the sides exactly in the slots to secure them. This proved difficult because the loop which normally is on the inside bottom of the screen to to pull it into place was missing on the frame. After Kelsey and Erik both tried unsuccessfully to replace the screen, I had to try. I didn't have much better luck with a good fit, but I finally got it. This boring little detail bears noting for later.
Later in the afternoon, I took the two inseparable teens with me to run some errands, including picking up storage containers at Walmart to help with the organization of Kelsey's clutter. We unloaded the van and I took the cases of canned cat food down to the basement. While there, I noticed that Wynonna, one of the older kittens destined for a pet home, was peeing on the dust mop leaning in the corner of the basement. Ever since I moved the new kitten litter downstairs and displaced Wynonna, she's forgotten how to use the litter box, usually favoring the dog's food bowl. I picked up the kitten and placed her in one of the litter boxes in the basement, lecturing her about how she was supposed to be a big girl. She promptly jumped out of the box, telling me she didn't need to go....anymore.

I went back to the van to get the next load to bring in, more cat food of course. On the way through our front screened in porch, I noticed my big red neutered male, Ray, spraying the screen. By this time, I was exhausted from the cold I'm getting from Jay and frustrated with cat pee. I yelled at Ray, telling him it was a good thing he was a favorite or else he wouldn't be and continued out to the van, annoyed because now I had one more mess to clean up.

While outside, I heard a kitten crying. I called, looking for a kitten perhaps in the window or who got out on the porch accidentally. I didn't see the source of the plaintive meowing yet but something caused me to look up. Amy, our adventurous tortoiseshell, had pushed out the bottom of the screen in Kelsey's bedroom window and was now out on our roof. I still heard the meowing, but it wasn't coming from Amy. Looking up even higher, I noticed the silhouette of a Maine Coon walking on the peak of our roof. It was Kinsey hollering that she was in heat, but there were no boys up here and this was more than she had bargained for.

I yelled up to Kelsey, who was in her room already, to open her window. Amy was happy to come back in to Kelsey.
However, Kinsey was confused as she couldn't see the window or Kelsey from her angle and continued to walk back and forth on our steeply pitched roof top, meowing her head off. I put my head in the front door and told Jay we had a cat on the roof. So while I called to Kinsey to come down to the window and Kelsey started crying in fear that the cat would jump,
Jay (my former firefighter husband) got the extension ladder and saved the day. No, he didn't sling the cat over his shoulder to haul her down. He took the carrier I handed him and coaxed a very grateful Kinsey into it.

Now, I'm searching for ways to better secure my windows for the summer before I jump out of them myself.


  1. Erik, eh? Is this same guy who goes by the nickname "Fishy"?

  2. Nope. Fishy has been replaced by Erik.