~~ Originally printed in The Chapel Hill (NC) Weekly, March 2012 ~~

So you’ve met my son, Caleb (12,) and my daughters, Bailey (17) and Blake (14.)

There’s orange cat, Lillet, and her calico daughter, Olive.

And there is little white dog. Cooper is a bichon frisé, which is French for “curly haired lap dog.” He is a faithful companion of all who are willing to submit themselves to rubbing his pink belly. He is a ferocious guardian of all manner of fluffy cushions. Continue reading

I live in a zoo

~~ Originally printed in The Chapel Hill (NC) Weekly, March 2012 ~~

I’ve always had cats. At least 11, by my count, until I found myself catless in 2006. After a time I honestly thought it would ever be that way.

But then my children’s stepmother witnessed a man flinging eight tiny kittens and their skeletal mother into the woods near their house. She rescued them, with Blake’s help, and found homes for all. I took the calico. Oh, and I also took the momcat. I often find that cats just sort of come out from the trees and into one’s life – a karmic thing – but my past experiences were laced with a little more mystery and subtlety than this time around, which involved Blake and Caleb sending me countless kitten pix messages and “PLEEEEASE!!!” texts. Continue reading