Sunday, November 30, 2014

Good Riddance

My regular readers know that we've been fostering cats for about 2 years now.  Of those 2 years, we've had 2 cats for a year, and six more for 8 of those months as well.  When we signed up, we were under the impression we were going to have the cats for a couple months at the most.  And initially that was true.  For the first year, we'd had 3 litters of kittens that all got adopted out pretty quickly.

I'm not sure what changed (I have theories I'm not going into today), but needless to say, adoptions through the rescue we were helping went to pretty much none. 

My family LOVES furry animals of any kind.  In fact, my hubby took in a rabbit because he was convinced if he didn't, it would be dead by the end of the day (for the record, he was probably right). That said, we officially hit our limit.  Within a week of replacing our roof, our A/C died.  After looking at those expenses and how much we were spending per month on food, litter, and gas and time getting the cats to adoption events, we decided it was time the cats had to go.

I am proud to say we are done.  Today, I took 8 cats to be fostered somewhere else.

My daughter is sad to see a few of them go.  I on the other hand am not.  Although most of the cats were friendly, they were getting to be too much.  In addition to feeding and scooping them, we essentially had to baby-proof the house.  On those occasions when I didn't get that done, things were destroyed.

I am happy to say, that we are now a 1 cat family.  We may get another cat down the road, but as far as I'm concerned it won't be for about a year (I need a break).  Will we foster cats again?  Perhaps, but I've learned a lot about the process, and I've learned that who you foster through is VERY important so we won't be fostering for the person we just finished with.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Perspective = Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving.  What's it all about?  It's a day originally designed to remember how the original settlers were able to survive.  Over the years, it's become a day to remember what you are thankful for.  The typical things to be thankful for are: family, a home, health, friends, and employment.

I'll admit it, today I'm struggling because not all of these things are going as I was hoping they would.

Thanksgiving was always a big holiday growing up.  My parents would invite families from our church who didn't have family locally for a big Thanksgiving meal.  We sort of became a new family of sorts each year.  Although my parents live 10 minutes away, they are not in the area this Thanksgiving.  That's because today they are out of town celebrating their 40th anniversary. 

I've been fighting a cold, but the last couple days I've been feeling much better.  However, last night around dinner my daughter came down with a stomach bug and still isn't back to normal.  My kids and I were going to go to Busch Gardens with some friends today, but that obviously didn't happen.   And why wasn't my husband invited to Busch Gardens?  Technically he was, but he had to work last night as well as tonight, so a day awake in the middle would not be a good idea.

This post is not designed to make you feel sorry for me.  On the contrary, it's about how I've decided to be thankful because of these issues.  How's that?!?  Because I've gotten some perspective.  People I know and love are struggling with some of these things in a much bigger way.

I have a friend who recently lost a family member to cancer.  Aside from said family member's birthday a week or two ago, this is the first holiday without her.  That can't possible be easy.  I have another friend who gave birth to a stillborn child on Thanksgiving, 13 years ago.  Although she knows she will see her son again in heaven, this can't be the easiest holiday for her because of that.

I work with people trying to purchase their own home, and I've seen a few recently who have not been able to realize their dream and are relegated to renting for the time being.  I also know people who are living on a fixed income who recently found out that their community fees are going up.  I know someone else who's job moved them so they had to sell their house at a substantial loss (as in they are paying back a loan in order to sell their home).  I also know someone who was told they will only be employed through the end of the calendar year.

So today, I'm going to be thankful.  Because:

1. I have parents that showed me how to love on friends and how to make it through 40 years of marriage.  I also have a new niece that I'm going to see next month.
2. Although the last couple months have been tough with our house, we have a house with equity that's allowed us to make the repairs we've needed.
3.  A cold and a stomach bug are nothing considering what other people are enduring.
4.  Although we are not spending time with friends today, we have friends that cared enough to invite us to join them today.
5.  And yes, my husband had to go in to work, but he has a job.  That's more than some people can say.  In fact, this time last year he didn't have a job.

I pray you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and that you were able to keep perspective today as you celebrate those things you are thankful for.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Missing Virginia

I admit it.  Today I miss living in Virginia.  It's NOT because they are getting snow where I used to live (the mountain I used to live on might get 6" or so).  In fact, I really don't miss that one little bit.

I miss Virginia today, because my sister-in-law had her second child today.  My first niece.  And I can't go visit in the hospital.  We are hoping to see them in the next month or so, but it's not quite the same.

I guess I will just have to be content with the fact that I have a care package consisting of things I've been knitting for a few months that will be going out in the mail today.  That will have to cuddle with my niece while I can't.   Counting down the days till I get to see her (and the rest of the family in Virginia too).