Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Kittens, Discipline, and Gratitude

There is a (seemingly) stray Siamese (blue point, maybe?) kitten wandering the neighborhood and coming into our laundry room to eat Kaz's food (Kaz is our own blue point Siamese cat; he's about 11 1/2 years old. We've had him longer than we've had #1). He (or she) has been eating his food for weeks now. We've caught him at it, but it keeps happening because unlike all the other cats that have wandered in and out of our laundry room over the years, Kaz doesn't fight this one. He lets it happen. The other cats got quite the fight and so rarely continued their quest for quality dry cat food.

This is the part that is strange, dear reader. I actually decided, after seeing that adorable kitten several times, that if this kitten does not have an owner, we should just keep it. If you knew about my allergies to animals and my aversion to pets in general and my stubborn decision to NOT have another cat after Kaz dies (whenever that will be in the next decade or so), you will understand the implications of my sudden change of heart. But seeing this cat in real life, and realizing that Kaz actually kind of "approves" of it, and knowing how nice it would be for the kids to have a pet to take care of and love (yeah, yeah, I know), I caved. And when I did, dear reader, Brandon jumped on it immediately! He got that kitten into our laundry room, befriended it, introduced it into the house with Kaz, and then let it go. Yeah, that sounds random, but what I mean is he began the "relationship of trust." The only thing we need to do is to make sure this kitten doesn't belong to someone else. We're pretty sure it doesn't because if it was being fed, it wouldn't keep coming back for food. Plus, it was pretty jittery around Brandon; he's pretty confident that the kitten has been on it's own since he was so weirded out by human presence.

Anyway. We'll see.
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Breakthrough: Brandon and I figured out a way to get the kids to do their chores without reducing ourselves (ahem: Me) to fits of yelling rage. Granted, I already know the answer to this. I don't have to yell. I just have to be firm and stand my ground. The consequences of unacceptable behavior have to be immediately met and applied correctly in order for it to work. In order for me to make it happen, of course, I only need massive amounts of self-control.
That's why it's so dang hard!
But it's getting better.
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I'm Thankful For:

green, fragrance, pink sunsets, sprawling ivy growing on my back wall.

inky pages full of words, fireplaces, mugs of herbal tea.

paintings, ivory keys under my fingers, laughing toddlers, silly songs sung by second graders.

sleep, vacuumed floors, rain against the windows, moments in Sacrament Meeting when the kids are quiet.

loving parents, concerned siblings, forever families, my eternal companion.

repentance, hope, faith, dreams, temples, the Atonement of Jesus Christ.

fairy tales, movies, hoodies, imagination, history.

expression, friendship, socks, airplanes, diversity.

rivers, mountains, songs, lilacs, newborn cries.

Despite the changes which come into our lives and with gratitude in our hearts, may we fill our days—as much as we can—with those things which matter most.
May we cherish those we hold dear and express our love to them in word and in deed.

1 comment:

Julie said...

Lovely list.

That whole non-emotional direct and immediate application of consequences stuff is so true, but yelling is so much easier. Except after a while they become numb to the yelling. Grrr....I need more self-control, too.

Cats=not my thing. I'm glad you're taking care of them.