Another new baby – kitten


You may recall that earlier this year we decided to add to our family by bring a couple of beautiful kittens to live with us –     They are beautiful hairy babies who have settled in to the point it is hard to imagine them not being here.

I follow the local branches of Cats Protection on Facebook, and regularly get picture of missing cats to share, and fundraising events that are being held.       It is a font of knowledge about the charities work in the area.      The updates though, often include animals that are still looking for their forever home or need rehoming for whatever reason.      A couple of weeks back one of these posts was showing the most beautiful little kitten.      Hubby was smitten just seeing the picture and decided one more hairy baby would complete our family.        He sent off an enquiry about the wee chap.     I took the phone call from the lady at the Cats Protection and she said that this particular kitten had been reserved but he did have 2 other litter sisters, if we would like to visit them.      Of course I said yes!

We decided not to tell the boys.       The Cats Protection centre is at the side of town that Hubbys Mum lives, so we told the boys we were going visiting.      After we left their Granny’s house, we told them we just had to pop somewhere to take a look at something we were thinking of getting.      They weren’t happy, especially as we got ourselves a bit lost and ended up driving around in circles for a while.        When we finally found it, and they saw the Cats Protection van, both were opened mouthed with excitement at the thought of getting another kitten.

We were taken in to where the pens were and the lady said she had been thinking about our family make-up, both human and feline, and wondered if we would like to meet a different kitten.      He had not yet been put on the website as looking for a home, but she just had a feeling about him and us.       She then produced a carry basket with the most beautiful piece of ginger and white fluff in it.       He was tiny, at only 10 weeks old.        We all had a cuddle with him and he felt so light, being used to lugging about our other 2 giants.       He stole our hearts instantly, and almost in unison, the four of us said that we wanted him to be a part of our family.       His name was Rupert, and he was due his first injections the following week, and assuming all went well with that, would be ready to come and live with us a couple of days later.      The boys were really happy, but at the same time disappointed that he couldn’t come home immediately with us.    We were told we would get a phone call during the week to let us know when we could collect him.

Every day that week the first question I had from the boys when they got home from school was had the lady from Cats Protection rung.      We had heard nothing by mid-week, so Hubby gave her a ring on the Thursday and she said he had just had his jabs and so we could collect him on Sunday afternoon.

The boys were so excited, and decided it was time to think of a proper name for him.      D thought Stampy, after the YouTuber they watch as his image is a yellow and white cat.    M though over ruled this saying ginger was too orange to be yellow!      They went back and forth with various ideas.    It wasn’t until we were driving out to collect him that they decided on Frederick.     It might seem an odd name for kids to come up with, but when ever I can’t think of someone’s name I call them Fred, and it is a bit of a joke, as I am useless at remembering names!

When we arrived at the centre, there were two other families waiting to take their new hairy babies home, so there was a bit of a wait.    D was getting very frustrated by this as he was desperate to see his new hairy brother.      When it was our turn to go in, Hubby did the paper work, while the boys and I had cuddles with our new family member.

In the car going home, the cage sat in the middle of the back seat, between the boys.     We put a blanket over it, to try to help calm the poor wee toot, but he did cry a fair bit, and the boys ended up with their heads under the blanket talking to him.    When D came out for breath, he said that he thinks we should stick to Rupert as his name.   It was therefore decided he would remain as Rupert.

When we got him home the older hairy babies were out so he was able to see his litter tray and food before they greeted him.     By greeting him I mean they both hissed at him and then ignored him.           That evening, he came and sat on our bed to sleep.       Spot and Fluff were not impressed with the new addition to the family and took every opportunity to hiss at him and make him feel unwelcome.         The following day though Spot began to take an interest in him, and started following him about.   Fluff though was having none of it and keeping well away.      It took a couple of days to say Spot had excepted him and they ate next to each other.    It has taken a few more days for Fluff to come to terms with the fact he is here to stay, but he has now given him a few licks, as well as clips across the ear!


My human babies, are totally besotted with them.      M wanted to stay home from school so he could just cuddle him – it didn’t happen.       D though has really surprised me with how he has bonded with him.      D says they are ginger buddies, and therefore have a strong connection.      He is extremely gentle with him, and Rupert has slept on D’s bed for a couple of nights.


Rupert is so friendly.     He loves tickles and enjoys sitting with Old Person – something neither of the other cats will do.   She says he reminds her of her first kitten, Porky.

He has had a string of visitors popping in to see him.   A friend of mine came in under the ruse her young grandson wanted to see the new kitten – he stood well back while she had a cuddle with him!    Some of D’s friends have made excuses to pop in and see him, to see the new kitten.    D has one very good friend who had said when we got the first hairy babies that he would never come into the house again as he was frightened of cats.    He of course did, but didn’t want to be in the same room as them.    He eventually became used to them and would give them a tickle, but looked very uncomfortable.       When D told him we had a new kitten, he came especially to see it, he happily tickled him, and yesterday asked if he could have a hold.     Rupert just curled up in his arms.    I insisted on taking a photo to send to his Mum who couldn’t believe he was cuddling a cat!       Him and D walk to school together, and this morning, he was rather  early knocking, as D hadn’t even put his coat on, so he came in to wait and get another Rupert cuddle!     This I believe was the real reason for his punctuality this morning!

In the week he has been with us, Rupert has grown.   It isn’t surprising as he is a greedy young man, and we are having to make sure he isn’t eating his older brothers food!      He is extremely friendly and likes nothing better than being a scarf – curling up around necks.       I think he knows I am the bringer of food, because I have been groomed a lot by him, which I see as his acceptance of being part of our family.        His new cat brothers are accepting him and playing chasing games with him, as well as doing some grooming.    It must be strange for them having him here, but they have adjusted very quickly, and even though Spot will curl up on me, and glare at him, its more like Spot telling Rupert that sitting on Mummy is his place, and only when he’s not using me can someone else go there.

He will get his second injections in a couple of weeks, and then have his snip in December.     He’s a beautiful boy.   I’m so pleased the Cats Protection lady thought he would fit in with us.

If you are thinking about getting a cat, please check out your local Cats Protection branch as they will be very helpful in finding you the right hairy baby for your family.


The Nonagenarian


Last Friday was a big day in our house, because my Mum turned 90 years old.       It is a grand old age, and despite her enjoyment of moaning, she is in good mental health, even if her body causes her problems.

Hubby and I had been thinking what to do for the day, and were at a loss to know what she would enjoy.      What do you do for an old lady who has no friends in the area, and no connections outside of the house?     Also what do you buy for someone of that advanced age that they will actually use?

The boys were involved in trying to come up with ideas, but I don’t think she would have enjoyed going to soft play or the arcade!        They did however ask if they could have the day off school.        I said yes, because I think it is hugely important that the younger generations interact with the older ones.       I was the same age as D is now when the only Grandparent I knew died, and when I heard other kids talking about things they had done with theirs, I was jealous.    I therefore think to have a day when the boys made a special effort to spend time with and look after their Granny was something that will stay with them.      I put notes to both teachers and it was accepted they would be off that day.

The date of her birthday was also the date of the MacMillian coffee morning.     I have done a coffee morning for the past few years, it is a great excuse for the Mums to get together for a cuppa and a gossip, all under the excuse we are doing our bit for charity.      I however decided that having the event on a day when it needed to be about my Mum was wrong.     I did however think it would be nice to have a few of the ladies she knows come in and see her.

The plans for the day were set!

A huge pile of cards had arrived in the post the few days before, and I had put them to one side so she could have them all on Friday.

Hubby had changed his working from home day to Friday, so he could be part of the celebrations.

The boys were up usual time, but were persuaded to let Granny have a bit of a lay in, after all, it must be tiring to turn 90!     Eventually, D could wait no more, and made her a cup of tea which he took up to her with a biscuit – he had wanted to make her bacon and eggs, but she doesn’t like breakfast in bed as she thinks its like being in hospital!

When she came down, the boys were so excited, and had to be reminded to give a bit of space, both physically and mentally!        Before she could get settled, D pinned a badge onto her announcing her age!      They helped her open her presents and cards.       We had given her a heat pad that goes around her shoulders like a cape, fastening at the front – she has a stiff shoulder and is always cold so seemed a sensible present.    We also gave her a stand for her tablet.     She maybe 90 now, but she loves playing games on her tablet, however with her hands suffering with arthritis, she sometimes has difficulty holding it for long, and her toes are getting sore from every time she drops it on them!     The stand is brilliant, it is like a microphone stand but the tablet clips into the top and can be adjusted by height and angle.     I think she will find this a great help.     She also had the obligatory PJ’s and socks – no gift giving celebration would be complete without one other or both!!!

I had told the Mums of the boys that D walks to school with that he wouldn’t be going, and so was surprised when one of his chums turned up at the time they meet.     He said he knew D wasn’t going but wanted to wish his Granny a Happy Birthday – such a lovely gesture.     Mum was totally taken a back by the kindness and politeness of the young lad, and invited him to come back after school for some birthday cake!

The weather was beautiful – she says it always is on her birthday and actually the year she was born there was a heatwave at this time of year!      The boys were treating her to lunch and so we decided to go down to Stonehaven and have a walk along the front to enjoy the fresh air first.         We left Hubby at home working.

D insisted on pushing her, but had to be reminded to stop running on a few occasions – she looked petrified!      It was lovely seeing the boys chatting with her, and just taking the time to interact with her – lets face it, in a usual day everyone is so busy with their own stuff they do sometimes forget to step back and just be with people.       As the weather was so lovely, it was decided to get something we could eat by the beach, and so it was Subway that the boys chose – to some that might not seem a very special food, but the boys were paying and they knew Granny liked it.       She was more than happy with that idea.          We sat looking out to sea – the view across the bay at Stonehaven is beautiful.        The boys were really attentive while we ate.


The boys then wanted to go to the sweetie shop near where we had parked to buy Granny some clove rock – her favourite.       It was then time to head back home.

When we got back some of the ladies had already arrived, and I think it was a bit of a shock to Mum to see them there, all wishing her a Happy Birthday.    The boys went and had some down time while they could.     The ladies were really kind to her, giving her cards and flowers and sweeties.      Our next door neighbour popped in, and Hubbys Mum came over.     Hubbys Mum had bought her a subscription to the magazine that she reads each week, which is really a perfect present.     We all drank coffee and ate cake and nattered for a couple of hours – until school run time when kids need to be collected.

A couple of D’s friends popped in after school to wish her a Happy Birthday – and to get cake!      Whatever their motivation, it does show that not all of the younger generation is thoughtless.

Hubbys Mum stayed for tea.    We had thought about going out, but Mum isn’t the biggest eater, so it isn’t really the best option, so instead we ordered curry, which is her favourite take-away – I think because you can pick at various bits rather than have a plate full of the one thing.      It was a lovely chilled evening, and the boys even let her choose which movie to put on – Friday night is always movie night in our house – she chose The Minion movie as its her favourite one of the boys DVDs!

When she went up to bed, she thanked us for a lovely day, and I think she had genuinely enjoyed herself.    It had been lovely to see how attentive the boys were with her, and I am glad they had stayed home from school.  D did however tell her not to expect the same level of devotion until her 100th! It was also kind of my friends to make her feel special during the afternoon.

If we are lucky, we will get to this grand old age, but it is not a definite so it is a time to celebrate.

Physio time.


D had his first physio session last week, following a referral from the GP after he has been complaining about pains in is heel and foot for quite sometime –

As with most medical problems, by the time he had waited for this appointment, he was saying it wasn’t hurting as much as it had!        But that seems to be the way of things.

I collected him from school after morning break for an appointment just after 11am.    The surgery is just the other side of the railway line from the school, so only a short walk.      D was of course rather anxious about the appointment.       He has vivid memories of the pain he went through after his operation on his knees when they were helping him to walk again.     I think his brain was telling him it would be nothing like that, but his heart could still feel the pain.    In situations like this it is rare that the rational brain wins.        He was very unsettled while we waited to be called through, but when we were, I was very impressed with the way he was dealt with.

The physio came out, and introduced herself to D and shook his hand.      She then address all the conversation to him, only asking for my input when he wasn’t too sure about dates.        I was not surprised when she didn’t  have the full picture of what was happening with D, and only had details of his sore heel, and no idea about his previous leg problems.      When I told her about the knee pins, she went off to pull up his records to see what had been done and what his orthopaedic surgeon had to say about it.      While she did that D changed into his shorts – I had forgotten he had been helping his Dad paint the decking and had stain splatter up the back of his leg!

She returned happy that his op had done what it was intended to do.          She had D walk backwards and forwards, then running, before laying him on the bed to have a feel of his movements.

She said she believed his heel pain was nothing more than growing pains – he has grown over an inch since July, and the muscles were still trying to catch up with his bones, meaning they were over stretched most of the time – she explained this to D in words and by drawing a diagram of what was going on inside his leg.   She did however say she was a little concerned by his movement – I thought, here we go, another lecture about his size.       She asked if we had noticed the angle of his feet when walking, an I said they were what my Dad would have called “ten to two feet” – they are turning out and if they were on a clock face that is the time they would show.        She said she believed that the reason for this was probably because after his op, all the work was done to strengthen the muscles where they had been messed about with on the inside of his knees, and the outside had been somewhat ignored which has led to weaker muscles not just at the knees, but hips and ankles.      His hypermobility wasn’t helping his movements either.     She then upset him by saying that while it was good that he loved to play football with his mates, and trampoline, he really needed to move better before he did too much more of either activity.

She then went through some exercises with him to help start to strengthen his legs.      The hardest part of getting them done correctly was making sure he had his feet facing forward – it must feel quite alien to him when he has been so used to turning them outwards.       By this time he was loosing concentration and becoming more interested in the equipment around him than what was being said.         I told him he needed to listen carefully as what he was being told was very important.   She said he was doing really well, and understood his Asperger’s as her nephew lives with it too.      She also said he was better behaved than some of the adult patients who really don’t try to grasp how to do the exercises they are given!      It was good to have someone who made an effort to accept D was just behaving the way he needed to, to allow him to cope in the strange environment rather than someone seeing him as being naughty for not sitting still and quietly.

She went to print off the exercises he has to do, while he got changed out of his shorts.       When heading to her little cubby, D saw the most amazing exercise bike, which he wanted to have a go on.      She said she was due another patient, but he could use it at their next appointment, and even shook on it.    Not surprisingly, D was happy to make his next appointment, and I am sure he will be reminding her about the promise she has made to him!

It was midday by the time we left the clinic, so D had a home lunch as it was his school break time anyway.

It has been hard work getting D to do his exercises, but he has done them.    He gets angry with himself that his feet haven’t yet learned that they need a new standard position, but that is just D all over, he expects perfection immediately and doesn’t comprehend that it will take time to reprogramme his muscles.

I hope doing this work with him, will give him the physical strength that will allow him to feel confident when he is playing with his friends or doing sports at school.