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NF-Lee's Gildor and Frodo

New kittens coming ~ plus a few fall photos.

Posted on 2008.10.23 at 20:33
Tags: , ,
~*~



I thought the Siamese cat fans out there might like an update.

As some of you know, two of our three Siamese cats died this summer leaving our third cat alone. Angelo is an extremely sociable, emotionally clingy, noisy guy (he never stops talking), and he has missed the other cats terribly. He’s lived with cat buddies all his life.

Three months after Pixie and Raoul died, he’s not roaming the house calling for them constantly the way he did, but he wants to held, carried or petted every minute he’s awake. We do what we can, being push-overs for all his "come do me" tactics. But even though we are now a three-human household (our daughter has come back home, and is in the midst of applying to enlist in the Coast Guard), there are still times when there’s no one with a free lap or arms available. He needs other cats!

Below are some photos of Angelo doing what he does past: having his way with us.





October 2 ~ Angelo wouldn't stay in my lap as I typed, but wanted to be up near my face. I compromised, putting him over my shoulder and typing with one hand.

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October 12 ~ Angelo in my husband's lap. He was trying to help our daughter brush up on her math for the Coast Guard exam, but Angelo would not be ignored. He cried until he was picked up and cradled.

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If we ignore Angelo long enough, he will simply jump onto shoulders, whether we are reading or typing or eating our dinner. He's even done it when we're standing up, doing the dishes or something. He’s a desperate cat. After Pixie died in July (Raoul died in June), it was plain that he needed more companionship. Now the cat beds have only him in them. When the others were alive, they were always cuddling up together to sleep or lounge or groom each other. With no cats to groom, he’s started licking us.

So after Pixie died, I started searching for a Siamese cat breeder on the internet, who was within a drivable distance. The breeder from whom we got our three blue points (Angelo and Friedrich, and later their mother, Pixie) had stopped breeding cats. She remarried and now has a new baby. But through her I found out that the breeder from whom she got her first breeding pair was still raising Siamese cats in rural Wisconsin, the state to the east of us.

After a series of email conversations, I ended up putting a deposit on a Wisconsin kitten that would be old enough to bring home in the middle of November (like many cat breeders, she won’t let them go until they are 15-16 weeks old). Our daughter thought that was a terribly long time to wait, but there just wasn’t another Siamese cat breeder available, and those would be her first kittens available. (The older litter was already all promised.)

So, four weeks ago my daughter and I drove out to the breeder’s country place in Wisconsin (a three-hour drive from here), to meet the kittens and choose one that would be ours. The result was that not only did we put our dibs on one of those kittens, I put down a second deposit for another kitten, a female from a different litter that had been born the same week.

I rationalized the extra expense by taking the fee out of my work savings, because I think it would be great to have two kittens again. My library job ended after city-wide cuts, but I had a bit saved up for “family emergencies”. And wasn’t getting companions for Angelo a family emergency? My husband was very tolerant about it, in fact he confessed he had half-expected it.

This was very spendthrift-ish of me. But I thought two kittens would be better, not just for their mutual companionship, but in the event that Angelo died. Call me gun shy after our spate of cat deaths, but Angelo had dental work done last month and the vet said his blood work showed that his kidney levels were a little high. Alarms went off since Angelo’s brother died very young from a rare kidney cancer. (P.S. Angelo seems fine so far; whew!)

So, here are the two kittens* in photos taken at our first visit, September 21.



Charles and Elsa at 8 weeks:

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* Note: Not everyone thinks Siamese kittens like these are cute, so you don't have to say they are if you don't think so. The mother of our daughter's friend, unaware she was overheard, exclaimed over Angelo and Friedrich when they were kittens, "those are the ugliest kittens I've ever seen!" Others have said they look ... different. "Like the creatures in Close Encounters of the Third Kind!" "Like aliens!" "Like Dumbo!" "What are those, miniature chihuahuas?" My own sister, who loves Siamese cats, said looking at these pictures, "they've got the biggest ears ever—like bats! Watch out or they'll be carried off in a strong wind."



Why “Charles” and “Elsa”, you may ask?

Well, Charles—who as a seal point will be dark-haired, and is bound to be handsome and elegant—we thought would do well with a leading man’s name from an older English movie or novel. So you have to say it with a toney English accent. "Chaahhhhlz". Picture the two well-bred leads in a thirties film: good-looking, expensively dressed, their gleaming Marcel waves close to their well-shaped heads. Violins swell under the scene. Perhaps they are on an ocean liner, perhaps at the edge of a cliff by the sea near an aging mansion.

“Oh, Julia!” he cries, clasping her shoulders and pulling her close. “Oh, Charles!” she swoons so that he has to support her (he's much taller, of course; this is an older movie). Their lips meet in a fervent but chaste kiss....

Charles has a a crooning sort of Siamese meow, very high and light, rather soulful, as if he were saying with soft passion, “Noooooh, noooooh, noooooh...!” (but meaning "Yes, yes, yes...!") I think he is going to be a very sweet-natured cat. Maybe that's why I wanted a romantic name for him.




Our Charles:

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Elsa is named for Elsa the lioness, the orphan cub fostered by Joy Adamson in “Born Free”. It so happened that my daughter and I had just watched a DVD of the film the week before we drove to Wisconsin, loving the old film all over again (I used to get the VHS from the library for her to watch when she was little). Elsa, Joy’s voice-over said, was the littlest, but bravest and boldest and smartest of her sisters—and Adamson’s clear favourite.

I fell for Elsa on sight. She was actually not one of our breeder’s kittens, and hadn’t yet been offered for sale. Her mother, a beautiful lilac point Siamese on loan from a breeder friend in Illinois, wound up trying to deliver a first litter of too many kittens—eight—too many even for tried and tested mothers. She had trouble, had an emergency caesarean section, and died. Only two of the eight kittens survived, Elsa and her brother. Providentially, a female owned by our breeder had just given birth to kittens that were stillborn, so she was pining to nurse and care for a litter. She became the foster mother to the orphans.

Elsa is extremely pretty, but her main attraction is that she’s going to be a real character. She’s climbs all over everything (we foresee a lot of busted tree ornaments and ripped curtains). She's already a noise-box, sure to vie with her "Uncle Angelo" as most noisy. She meows at the top of her lungs, as if she were shouting "HEY! HEY! HEY! HEY! HEY!"

I think the two will make a complementary pair, and be very entertaining companions for Angelo, although he may be balky at first. As soon as they start sleeping in the same basket, like Angelo did with Pixie, Raoul, and Friedrich, there will be no separating them, I am sure.




Elsa:

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I should note that the breeder really astonished us. She had said in her emails that she was thinking seriously of winding down her cat breeding, or at least greatly reducing it, because was getting too old for it. I could understand that. Pet breeding really is a 24/7 job, one of the most time-consuming hobbies ever. A breeder can never go anywhere, unless they have top-quality back-up, since the needs of the cats or dogs and their kittens or puppies is constant. And there's emotional stress to deal with when things go badly (and they do).

A retired nurse, our breeder has been doing this for thirty years. The person we met was a good-looking, well-groomed woman with snowy hair and a slight limp. A recent widow, she cared for her disabled husband for the last few years, as well as the cats. My daughter and I guessed her to be in her early seventies. We were open-mouthed, though, when it turned out she was eighty-six. Here she is in this house in the country, with only a couple of neighbours within miles, and she’s keeping up the house (which looks pretty good) and property, plus doing all this work with the cats all by herself — at eighty-six! We were amazed.

She said a breeder friend in Illinois (the one who owned the cat that died, the mother of Elsa) calls her every night to check on her. She said plans are in place should she not be able to carry on; the cats all designated to be taken by various breeder friends who have agreed to do this. If I lived closer, I'd help her. I don't think she's going to be able to keep this kind of work up much longer. But she sure does love it.

Anyway, to let you see our breeder, here’s a funny series of photos of her holding up Elsa, who is meowing lustily.



The breeder holding Elsa:

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And that’s the selection. I hope you enjoyed it. We are looking forward to Nov. 15-17, the days designated to pick up our kittens, the exact day depending on the weather and our daughter’s work schedule. More photos when they actually arrive? You bet.



~*~




Oh, here’s a bonus for the garden fans.

You might remember my garden post, showing the gardens this summer. Here’s how it looked here earlier this month, including a shot of the *back* of the giant rock. We didn’t put any garden at the back because the neighbourhood kids liked jumping off it so much. I didn’t want them landing on my flowers, after all. Besides, the back has some really nice colours.




Front yard, October 14 and 19, 2008:

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The two photos below were taken three weeks ago in the creekside park I wrote about a few posts ago, in Rivendell Pt. 3. You can see one of the little bridges that crosses the creek where it's swift in the top picture. It feels so secret down there! In the second shot you can see where the path and creek slows and widens out a bit (the creek is the dark mirror in the right of the frame).

The trees are almost all bare now, but it still smells great, and the creek is still rushing over the rocks. It's a wonderful thing to have so near by, and so little used.



Tischer Creek park, October 4, 2008:

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~ Mechtild

Comments:


pearlette
pearlette at 2008-10-24 15:50 (UTC) (Link)
You take wonderful photos. :)

Autumn looks so beautiful over there. It's not bad here this year but your colours are even MORE vivid. (I wouldn't want your Minneapolis winters though.) Tischer Creek Park looks very Rivendell-ish. :)

As for your darling puddy tats ... I have to be honest, I prefer the traditional-looking Siamese cat to these Siamese with their very big ears and ultra-pointy faces, but the kittens are cute and you can tell immediately that they have BIG personalities. I've met a few Siamese cats in my time and no, they do not ever shut up. I do love their beautiful blue eyes.

The breeder lady looks such a sweetheart. The last photo of her holding Elsa is pretty hilarious.

Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-24 18:17 (UTC) (Link)
Glad you liked the fall pics, Pearl. We are unfortunately entering the cold-and-brown month, November. The undergrowth and bushes still have their fall leaves right now, but soon everything will be bare, bare, bare. Then we'll all be wishing for snow, to cover it up.

You know, I think I have a weakness for big pointy ears. Especially with pointed chin and big blue eyes.

Seriously, I do tend to have an immediate "Awwwww...!" response to species that are slenderly built, have triangular-shaped faces and prominent, pointy ears. If they have expressive eyes, the attraction is irresistible. I love the look of deer, foxes and fennecs*, and foxy-looking dogs (slender legs, triangular faces and big pointy ears). Why wouldn't I like a foxy-looking cat?

Just in case you've never seen one, a fennec is a small fox that lives in arid North Africa, very small, with very big ears (helps cool them off or something). Here's one below. Looks like he could be Elsa's brother. *g*


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Maeglian
maeglian at 2008-10-24 20:05 (UTC) (Link)
Hey, what a lovely treat of a post! :-)

I think Charles and Elsa look quite cute, really - but I also think they'll grow more beautiful when they mature. They do look very distinct and like they're simply brimming with personality. Just now they look a bit like gangly "teens", limbs seemingly disproportionate... but when they reach adult cathood, they'll be gorgeous. And those big ears are wonderful.

Especially that first picture of Elsa and the breeder lady is fun - Elsa looks almost like a hand puppet! With personality to spare!

I'm so very glad you're found these two and that Angelo won't be alone cat in the house anymore. It's pretty wrenching to read about him being so clingy and forlorn now... while the picture of him in your hubby's lap is just so sweet! *melts*

Also thank you for the garden pics. The fall colours are lovely.

Do let us know what happens come mid-November when you've brought C&E back home.
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-24 21:03 (UTC) (Link)
Maeglian, greetings! I had to laugh when you said Elsa looked like a hand puppet in those pictures with the breeder. She does, she does! Or a toy that says 'MEOW!' when you lift its hand; sort of a "lever action" cat.

Yeah, Angelo's a doll; such a goofy, lovable, loving nut. He can be a pest he's so needy, but we're crazy about him.

Thanks so much for stopping by!
melyanna_65
melyanna_65 at 2008-10-24 21:28 (UTC) (Link)
I love to hear about your kitties! I remember when Pixie and Raoul died, poor babies, it was so sad.

Now I see that Angelo has become the cuddliest kitty ever! The one where he sleeps in your hubby's arms made me melt, he's so relaxed and trusty. I'd die to have a kitty in constant need of cuddles, although I understand that you can't spend all the time looking after one kitty.

I think it was the right choice to let the family grow and adopt two new kitties. I'm sure the new ones will find the best home with you and that Angelo will have the company he needs.

Please, keep us updated when you bring Charles and Elsa home with you.

The pics from your front yard and Tischer Creek Park are simply amazing. What fantastic colours, you really live in the Shire!

*hugs you*
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-24 23:02 (UTC) (Link)
The pics from your front yard and Tischer Creek Park are simply amazing. What fantastic colours, you really live in the Shire!

Ha ha! Thank you, Melyanna. But, no, we live in Forodwaith (the frigid area to the north of Eriador), not the Shire. It does look Shire-ish in that park, though, at least when it's not winter (then its full of snow and ice). And in the fall it looks Rivendell-ish. In all these years I've never been down there in the spring. Spring is very short here--and muddy. The trails in there get muddy then.

It's just a narrow little park, really, long but narrow, and you wouldn't even know it's there driving on the two roads that cross over its creek. It is like a hidden world.

Yes, it's lovely to have affectionate pets. It's the only sort we've had, but Angelo really does take the prize as Most Needy. He's like a cuddles-and-pets nymphomaniac. *g*
sams_star
sams_star at 2008-10-25 00:36 (UTC) (Link)
I think you're ALL adorable, especially Angelo sleeping in your arms! And the nature photos are gorgeous--I enjoyed them all! Thanks!
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-25 00:58 (UTC) (Link)
Why, my pleasure, Sam's Star! Angelo is a total love, but he needs siblings (nieces and nephews?)!

And I'm glad you liked the autumn pictures. It looks like autumn has finally ended. There are a few leaves left of low-growing trees and bushes, but snow and falling temperatures are predicted for the weekend.....
Maewyn
maewyn_2 at 2008-10-25 01:27 (UTC) (Link)
Angelo looks so content, laying in your husband's arms. He's taking full advantage of his home comforts!

Oh, what beautiful kittens! Things will certainly liven up when they come home! Elsa does appear to be the "sparky" outgoing one. Never a dull moment with her around! Charles looks the far more relaxed type, with his sleepy-looking eyes.

I noted your reference to the Maine Coon cat above. I may be wrong, but I think our son's cat may have some Maine Coon blood in him. When I looked at some pictures of this breed, there are many similarities. He's gorgeous!

Your garden looks spectacular with all those bright autumn colours. Even the rock is getting into the act with its reddish colours!

How lovely and peaceful it looks in that park. Rivendell indeed!
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-25 01:57 (UTC) (Link)
Ah, part Maine Coon? He *must* be beautiful! They are absolutely gorgeous. I was telling Pearl how wowed I was when I met some strolling around a cat show. The showstopper was a male, completely laid back, who looked the size of an ocelot, but with long hair making him look even bigger. I think the breeder said he was over twenty pounds. Under the pile of gorgeous hair he wasn't a bit fat. That's just how long he was. Perhaps they were cats of Numenor, where the people were extra tall, too? *g*

I'm pleased as punch you think the kittens are beautiful. Even my husband thinks Elsa looks like a bat. I think her face is as pretty as a fairy's! The breeder in Wisconsin thought the breeder who actually owns Elsa (it was her friend in Illinois that owned the female that died in childbirth) is silly not to keep Elsa to breed, because she's such a great-looking cat, especially in the face.

But what I'm looking forward to is her behaviour. Hopefully she won't be a homewrecker, but she does have a look in her eye that say Trouble, in the mischievous sense. She's got a lot of sparkle. Charles actually had a cold when we were visiting, which made him squint a little, his eyes irritated and a bit runny. But he's fine now. They are still going through their childhood illnesses, you see, or so the breeder said. The breeder is very critical about over-vaccinating cats (or that's what she thinks), and the excessive use of antibiotics, which she thinks ruins a kitten's resistance in the long run.

Yes, it is very Rivendell-like down there. It was even more so the week after I took those pictures in the park, but I forgot to bring my camera. The days that followed were gloomy and overcast, which didn't make for good photos either. Now the leaves are almost all gone. The tree tops are completely bare.

Edited at 2008-10-25 02:00 am (UTC)
 Paulie
not_alone at 2008-10-25 13:22 (UTC) (Link)
Oh, what wonderful pics, Mechtild!! The kitties and the scenery - just stunning!!

I have to admit the kitties are not the prettiest I've seen - but that certainly doesn't stop them from being cute!! I love that second pic of Angelo in your husband's lap - contentment, and dare I say, smugness, personified. Or should that be catified?!!

I really hope your dear Angelo enjoys the company of Charles and Elsa when they arrive:)

Btw, you are so right about that lady - she looks incredibly good for 86!!
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-25 13:45 (UTC) (Link)
Yes, they are cute more than lovely. They will be elegant adults, but they do look little space creatures when they are little. I'm partial in thinking they're *beautiful* space creatures, lol.

Angelo is a silly nut, but a doll. Thanks for stopping by!
Whiteling
whiteling at 2008-10-25 14:03 (UTC) (Link)
Charles and Elsa! Aww, too sweet, they both - especially Elsa looks also funny with her huuuge ears. Looks as if she could flap with them and fly away. :-D
I'm glad that Angelo has new cat companions; he's such a sweetie too.

And your garden looks wonderful, Mechtild. I just love those rich autumn colours.
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-25 16:43 (UTC) (Link)
Yep, those are b-i-i-i-i-i-g ears. But I always loved Dumbo, too. Actually, that's a breed goal for the "modern" style Siamese: giant pointed ears, widely set, with a pointy face.

I think the ones of her with the breeder are hilarious. Maeglian said she looked like a puppet. How true! You just lift her arm and she lets out a squawk.
Gentle Hobbit
gentlehobbit at 2008-10-25 15:04 (UTC) (Link)
Heeee... I love seeing Siamese kittens before their points develop fully. I hope that one day I will get a chance to watch a kitten grow its points.

My new cat, Mishu, is a Himalayan, so I've got a warm, cuddly, soft, silky, long-haired Siamese to cuddle. :)
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-25 16:46 (UTC) (Link)
Ooooh, Himalayans are so *lush*! You say one day you'd like to see a kitten grow into its points. Did Mishu come to you as an adult?

I like all animals with points, actually. I love the cream-coloured sheep that have the black faces and legs, too. The first time I saw one I was a little girl, driving in a car. I pointed out the window and cried, "Look! Siamese sheep!" I also love the horses that come in that colour. ("Siamese horses"?)
(Anonymous) at 2008-10-26 20:09 (UTC) (Link)
Angelo looks very 'chilled out' in your hubby's arms, Mechtild.

The kittens are adorable ~ as are all baby animals in my eyes ~ and these two will grow more beautiful as they mature. Your scenario for naming 'Chaahhhlz' bought visions of 'Brideshead Revisited' or 'Rebecca' to mind. I always loved 'Born Free,' and Elsa is such a pretty name. I hope dear Angelo accepts those two young whipper-snappers when they arrive. I'm sure all three will be curled up together on the cat-bed before too long. The 86 year old lady is amazing.

The picture of the fennec fox you posted in your reply to Pearl reminds me so much of my sister's little dog, Ellie. Her ears are exactly the same, and she is mostly white, too.

Such beautiful autumn colours in your photographs, and that's a lovely park, Mechtild ~ an elf would not look out of place there.

~ Blossom.
Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-27 21:30 (UTC) (Link)
Dear Blossom,

Thanks for the lovely kitty comments! We are at the moment away from home, "up the shore" for two days, so that my husband can have had a vacation while our daughter is here with us. I'll be taking her to the Wash. D.C. area in a couple of weeks to visit grandma and my brother, but my husband will stay here, and take care of poor Angelo (yes, I think he's going to end up loving having the kittens for company). But the hotel has a computer guests can use in the lobby. I'll do a post, perhaps, on the stay, because it's so pretty here. I've been taking LOTS of pictures.

Your scenario for naming 'Chaahhhlz' bought visions of 'Brideshead Revisited' or 'Rebecca' to mind.

Yes! In fact, I named the woman "Julia" in my scenario, which is the name of Charle's amour (Sebastian's sister) in Brideshead. (The old TV series of Brideshead is one of amy all-time favourite dramas.)

Your sister's dog looks like a fennec? I would just *melt* for it, then. I just love foxy-looking dogs, and fennecs are irresistible.
(no subject) - (Anonymous) Expand
Lavender Took
lavendertook at 2008-10-28 21:03 (UTC) (Link)
Hehehehe!!! Angelo is quite the baby there! I'm glad you're getting him those 2 little meezers--what a happy Thanksgiving you're all going to have this year! (-:

Elsa the lion was a childhood favorite of mine. I sat for many weeks reading Born Free before I was really old enough for it--when I was 8 or 9--and I remember sitting with a dictionary with it looking up like every other word, but I was determined to know what I could about this wonderful big cat. There was also a Disney movie from the same period about Charlie the cougar, so I had Elsa and Charlie (though not Chaaahles) feline heroes back then.

Your garden is just gorgeous! And what a lovely park--I can see the Rivendell inspiration in it.

I posted fall pics last year from the lake near my apt building you might enjoy:
http://lavendertook.livejournal.com/51698.html

http://lavendertook.livejournal.com/51889.html

http://lavendertook.livejournal.com/52394.html

http://lavendertook.livejournal.com/53582.html

I don't think this year is going to be nearly as pretty around the DC area--I see a lot of browning out here already--but last fall was exceptionally beautiful and long lasting.


Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-10-28 22:38 (UTC) (Link)
Oh, my! Your fall pictures are RAVISHING! You say it's browning out there? I take it "Greenbelt" is Greenbelt, MD. Is it because of drought?

A fellow Born Free fan! I loved the book, too, but was twelve when I read it. I wanted a pet lion. Seriously! The answer was "no", I knew, so I didn't ask. Especially since we lived in a duplex in Brooklyn at the time. *g*

Estë   (or ST for short)
este_tangletoes at 2008-11-09 16:37 (UTC) (Link)
Purrrfect pussey cats.

I look forward to future posts about Angelo, Charles and Elsa.

--Estë

Mechtild
mechtild at 2008-11-11 01:27 (UTC) (Link)
Hi again, Estë! I see you looked at the kitties post, too. "Little fruit bats", my husband said affectionately. Angelo was thrilled to see me and Rachel again (when we got home tonight), so he's happy. And it's just one more week until we drive off to get Charles and Elsa. Woo hoo!
mechlinda - practice journal only
mechlinda at 2008-11-19 14:14 (UTC) (Link)
Just testing to see if the "notices of reply" work on the new server.
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