Well this winter has been extremely mild up until now, so we’ve been able to get outdoors more often than usual. As a result, my depression hasn’t gotten a good hold on me yet, and for that I’m SO thankful. On our Sunday walk this week, the park was full of families enjoying the mild weather — there were even people without coats, although I’d say that’s pushing your luck.
Sadly, our family suffered another loss in December. It was our 17-year-old cat, Libby. We felt she was suffering too much from her various illnesses and decided to have her euthanized a few days before Christmas. She passed peacefully on the living room sofa with her head in my hands, and I think that made a big difference in how I’ve been dealing with the loss. And I think that since she’d been in decline for so long, we’d adjusted to the idea and had already begun the mourning process before she died.
Ever since Pepper died in 2005, I’d told myself that I couldn’t bear to get any more cats because of the pain I suffered when they died. I thought I’d just let them go one by one and then be done with it. But after Libby died we were left with only one, our 12-year-old male named Mickey. And boy was he lonely suddenly! It was only three days before I realized I was starting to think of getting him another feline companion. And amazingly — to me at least — after nine days I found myself at the humane society “just looking” to see who they had available for adoption. Well, of course I fell in love with a kitty instantly, and the next day Dexter came home to live with us.
He and Mickey are getting along fabulously, and we love him to pieces too. He’s two and a half years old and still really playful. I bought him some of his own new toys, and Mickey has started playing with them too. This is so nice to see, because Mickey hadn’t shown much interest in toys for several years. I think he’s stimulated by having Dexter around, and that’s exactly what we hoped. I can breathe a sigh of relief now that we have two happy & healthy kitties in our home again. There’s really nothing like falling asleep with a cat (or two) purring beside you….pure bliss.
As I wrote last time, I’m planning to do some painting around the house this winter as a way to keep myself physically active. I bought the paint yesterday, so now I can’t back out of it. I’m starting small, with the laundry room and guest bath, so I thought I’d try out some low-VOC paints. They cost almost twice as much as regular paint, so I probably won’t use them for larger areas like the foyer (the walls are 17 feet tall there — too much paint!). I bought Mythic Paint from the local hardware store; it’s not only low VOC, it’s NO VOC. Even better. If you’re curious about low-VOC paint, here are some FAQs on their website. I’m convinced that any time you can possibly reduce the chemicals brought into your home you should do it. I also try to use mostly organic cleaning products around the house, but vinegar takes a lot more elbow grease so I have to admit that I still use some of the nasties — like Scrubbing Bubbles and Mr. Clean. They’re by no means healthy, but they get the job done. I guess you have to pick your battles.