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Blog, Faith, Marriage, prayer, Stress

Our new cat Silas

Today has been an overcast, rainy day. It hasn’t been raining cats and dogs lately, or at least not dogs! Cats…well, we do have several strays in our neighborhood. About a month ago, I brought one in to stay! Here’s the story of Silas our new cat.

Our cat Silas

Our cat Silas

Although there are several strays roaming our neighborhood, this beautiful one came more frequently than the others. Of course, he especially did this when I began feeding him! My adopted black cat, Natalya (I adopted her several Christmases ago), watched him eating the Iam’s cat food and drinking the water on the patio outside, from our sunroom.

Initially, I thought the cat was a girl and I asked Ray to help me to name her. He had seen the cat from a distance several times outside, when he was leaving for work. He said, “Sophie,” which is a beautiful name. I even recorded a vlog on my YouTube channel about the cat with the name, “Sophie.” But the cat turned out to be a boy! (Neither of us looked too closely under the tail.)

Ray always thought he was a male from his broad chest and his behaviors, and the vet confirmed that the cat was a non-neutered male. Ray and I decided on his name together, “Silas,” which means “of the forest or wood” or “prayed for.”

Ray has been wanting his own cat, but he wanted a kitten to raise and then for it to become a “lap cat” (like my cat Natalya is with me. She loves sitting on my lap and following me around the house). But Silas is definitely NOT a lap cat; he’s never still! Even the vet said this about him.)

Silas has tabby markings, and the vet he saw for a wellness check said he also probably has a mixture of Persian and/or Siamese breed, due to his coloring and his bushy tail. The receptionist at the vet he saw today said he might possibly have a Maine Coon breed mixture as his tail is bushy and his paws are so big.

Initially, I thought the cat was a girl! I’ve always had female cats and only had one male cat, when I was a child. We simply called him “the tomcat.” He was midnight-black and prowled around our house and others in the south Georgian neighborhood where I lived growing up.

I’ve found out that male and female cats are QUITE different, physically and in behavior and personality! Males are definitely more assertive and/or aggressive – more territorial.

I had begun a habit of feeding the cat when suddenly, one week the cat went MIA. I fretted, worried, and obsessed for an entire week, thinking the cat had died. In our neighborhood, there are fast-driving cars, large barking dogs, and other cats, and Ray and I both have seen a couple of dead cats on the road as we drive to town. Ray thought someone had probably taken the cat into their home, and he, our daughters, and my sister Maria encouraged me that the cat was probably just fine. I began praying for the cat.

I made a decision that if the cat came back, I was going to take him in to live with us as OUR pet. He didn’t have a collar. While he acted partly feral, he did want me to pet him when I’d feed him and seemed to have interacted with human beings before. (He also knew how to use a litter box immediately when I took him in; I didn’t have to train him, thank God!) Other stray cats in the neighborhood ran away when they saw Ray or me or other people, but this cat seemed friendly.

One day when I went to get into my car to drive to see our daughters (in another city), he began walking toward me, meowing as if to say, “Don’t go!” My heart just went out to him! (This was before he went missing.)

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Are you making 2nd quarter goals? Hope, health, & happiness.

Image source: Katie Harp @ Unsplash

Image source: Katie Harp @ Unsplash

Yesterday I met with our CPA to file our 2022 taxes. So. Not. Fun!

My husband Ray and I now owe even more taxes than the year before. I’m looking to Jehovah Jireh our Provider. 

God provided a ram for Abraham to sacrifice to God instead of his beloved, precious son Isaac. God told Abraham to kill Isaac to test Abraham’s faith in Him. When God saw that Abraham was going to obey, not even withholding from God his son who he waited years into his old age to have and who he greatly loved, God stopped Abraham.

“Then Abraham lifted his eyes and looked, and there behind him was a ram caught in a thicket by its horns. So Abraham went and took the ram, and offered it up for a burnt offering instead of his son.” (Genesis 22:13, NKJV)

I’m also praying for a payment plan with the IRS to pay the taxes that we owe. Now that we’re into the second quarter of 2023, I’m making other goals as well. Are you?

To summarize them, my new goals are hope, health, and happiness. 

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Blog, Business, Marriage, prayer, Stress

What has you blocked?

Leaves and coffee

On Friday, after having my morning hot, creamy coffee and prayer, I set about to do my work in my office on my laptop. I had a Voxer coaching call also with my biz coach, Diane Cunningham Ellis, which went well. Voxer is like a walkie-talkie app on your phone. It is very cool, fast, and fun!

My biz coach, Diane Cunningham Ellis

My biz coach, Diane Cunningham Ellis

Diane gave me some suggestions on improving my website and advice on how to prosper more in my business. (She often says, “If you’re not making money in your business, it’s not a business. It’s an expensive hobby!” Amen!)

About mid-morning, my husband Ray texted me that a plumber was coming. Ray had gone downstairs on Friday morning and heard the bathtub and the toilet water “bubbling.” (Gurgling)

Uh-oh. Ray said this is usually an indicator of a “blockage.” He did NOT want sewage coming back up through the drain in our basement, our toilets, and tubs, so he called a plumber immediately. 

Ray's ceramic turtle

Ray’s ceramic turtle

You have to understand something: my husband is NOT a man of fast action; he (and God) always seem to move at a turtle’s pace, in my opinion. Years ago, I gave Ray a ceramic turtle as a joke gift, telling him that I feel he and God move slow as a turtle (see pic above). I’m like a race horse, raring to get out of the starting gate and RUN. So when Ray told me that he had called a plumber (so fast!), I knew it must be serious. (Oh, crap, pardon the pun!)

My husband Ray

My husband Ray

When I told Diane on the Voxer Coaching call that Ray had called the plumber and now that was stressing me out (as if I didn’t have enough stress), she said that is just life. Plumbers, air conditioning repairmen, tech issues, unfortunately, it’s all  part of life. You just deal with it and keep moving! In her way, that’s very fast. Then she went on to tell me some more blunt (but needed!) advice about my website and business!

cappuccino and laptop

cappuccino and laptop

As I tried to work later that day after my coaching call, the two plumbers arrived. I showed one of them all of our toilets and told him about Ray’s concern over the “bubbling” that morning. He nodded knowingly, as if to say, “I’ve got this.”

Initially, I instructed the plumbers not to let my cat Natalya out when they went in and out the door, as she’s an inside-only cat. They assured me they’d look after her. I went to my office to focus on numerous to-do’s. Natalya is normally a very sweet cat. I think I did hear Natalya growling once at the plumbers, but for the most part, she sat on the carpet, staring with wide eyes at the strangers as they walked throughout our house.

Natalya in the sunroom

My cat Natalya in the sunroom

Then as I looked out my office window about an hour later, one plumber was RUNNING to their truck. A small army of plumbers suddenly arrived, talking together about the problem. I could hear one of the plumbers in the bathroom down the hall, frustrated and cussing once or twice as he worked under the sink. This was NOT a good sign – and how much was this going to cost us?

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