“Most beds sleep up to six cats, ten without the owner.” – unknown

Right now at our house we have 5 cats big enough to join us in the bed, and six more that are considering learning how to climb bedcovers to join the fun. It’s a wonder we ever get any sleep.

Maggie Mayhem is the worst of the lot, and as such, spends a lot of time in kitty jail. (The basement.) Maggie, in her sweet moments, sleeps at the foot of the bed on the side nearest the window. It’s the best spot to make sure nobody invades our backyard seeking to wreak havoc – or poach on her hunting territory. Sometime in the night Maggie will decide she’s cold and needs cuddled. She makes her way to the head of the bed, where she stands on the pillow waiting for one of us to lift up the covers so she can crawl under. Other times, she settles for sleeping on my head.

In her bad moments, Maggie wants the entire household to wake up. She starts by meowing loudly (the only volume she knows) and if that doesn’t do the job, she moves on to her next trick: head butting the lamp. The lamp has a metal base and makes almost as much noise as Maggie when it bangs on the nightstand. Sometimes I’m able to ignore it, though. So Maggie races across the bed to Ken’s side and head butts his lamp. Then she starts knocking his books and magazines to the floor. Yes, she succeeds in waking us up. Unfortunately, that means she goes to jail – again!

Zeke is one of our cuddlers. He starts the night at the foot of the bed. But rarely a night goes by that he doesn’t make a trip to the head for ear scratches and neck rubs. The only problem with this loving scene is that Zeke does not take no – or a grumpy “I’m asleep, leave me alone.” – for an answer. If ignored he hooks a claw under my hand and pulls it up to his head. Hiding hands is futile as well. He wraps his paws around my arm and tries to pull my hand from hiding. Zeke’s idea of necessary attention at 1 a.m. and mine are slightly different, so I end up getting gently clawed most nights. When he’s had enough, he curls up beside me and goes back to sleep.

Shira doesn’t sleep with us often, especially now that she has kittens to tend. Her bed visits are fly-bys. About 2 a.m. she jumps on the bed and chirps until I pet her. Having gotten what she wants, she’s gone again. Of course, she usually walks across Maggie while visiting and I’ve already told you what happens when Maggie wakes up. Lately, though, we’ve been treated to more noises from Shira than I think I heard the first year we had her. Those kids of hers are always up to something and she often has to chastise them. Their latest game is hiding under my dresser to sleep. Shira is much too big to fit under there, so in the middle of the night I’ll hear her telling those bad babies to come out of there right now! Typical kids, they only hear and obey when it suits their purposes – like when they’re hungry.

Between 2 and 3 is when Shadow comes to life. He comes to bed with us each night and plays frantically until we put away his toys in the nightstand. Then he curls up and goes to sleep next to my legs. Somehow, this little guy manages to steal half a king sized bed after we go to sleep. I wake up in the night crowding Ken off the side of the bed and discover that a 3 pound ball of fur has my entire side to himself. I scoot back over only to wake up later in the same circumstance. But then he wakes up. He walks on me and cries until I wake up. After a suitable amount of cuddles, he’s off to eat, play, and enjoy the quiet house without all those other cats bugging him.

Talia waits until about 4 a.m. for her snuggles. She likes to sleep under the bed or on the cat tree downstairs for most of the night. Somewhere around 4 she makes her way unto the bed, purring like crazy. And then the head butts begin. There’s nothing that shows love like a head butt to the side followed by a cold Wegie nose in one’s armpit. Talia gets so into head butts that she does flips beside me on the bed. She also likes the ear scratches and neck rubs and will dig her head under a hand to get them. No claws involved, though. Thank goodness! One mauling a night is quite enough. Eventually she settles down to sleep purring beside my pillow. Of course, by then it’s nearly 5 a.m.

Around 5, the babies start waking up. I hear little meows as they crawl out from under the dresser. This is quickly followed by wild thumping noises as they chase each other around the room, under the bed, down the hall, back into our bedroom… How six kittens that each weigh just slightly more than a pound can make such a racket I’ll never know.

By 5:45 when I have to get up, I’m usually wide awake. The cats have all gotten all the loves they needed for the night and all is well in the world. Well, except with one sleep-deprived cat mom. 

(--> Cat Tails, Pg12)

2002 lisa s vasa

 

(Please note that you will see a number of photos of our cats and kittens that I've taken outside in a natural setting. The LostWoods cats do NOT go outside unsupervised! When we do go outside for pictures and occasional adventures, there is always one person and usually two watching them closely. We do have an outside, fully enclosed run to which the older cats are allowed access, but even then we check on them often.)

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