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A Cute Surprise! We adopted 2 rescue kittens, Hero and Lisa!

Hello everyone! Where should I even start? Well, in short, we adopted 2 more cats into our little family… The nearly 6 months old kittens, Lisa and Hero!

The exact date of their birth is not known. It was Ralph who came up with the name Hero for the sweet little boy. They already had temporary names, Nero and Lisa. Ralph had no idea at first that they had these names already, and came up with Hero for the little boy. When you read their story below, and what he had to endure, you understand the name. He’s our little Hero, for surviving it all with Lisa. I’ll keep Nero in his full name, but we’ll call him Hero for short, so it’s Nero the little Hero and Lisa.

The whole story…

2019 11 02 Lisa and Hero at the Foster home
This was the picture I saw first when hearing about them. It’s Lisa and Hero when they were still at their Foster home.

On Saturday, November 2, 2019, I read about the two kitten siblings, who had it very rough until they were found and nursed back to health. Like it happens all the time, and every time is one time to many, everywhere, someone “got rid” of their kittens by simply setting them out by the street. They had to fend for themselves for who knows how long.

About two months ago, they were found in the midst of the rubbish of a construction site. In all, there were 4 kittens, each of them in a very bad state. Dehydrated, starving and the little boy Hero was extremely close to death. He was found with his right back leg severely injured. He was probably hit by a car, or some other horrible thing happened while they’ve been out there by themselves. Hero must have been in so much pain from that badly injured leg, and that for who knows how many days. Thank God these sweet kittens were found in time, as they surely would not have been able to stay alive, in the state they were in, for much longer.

It was Helga, who owns her own rescue and does it all by herself with the help of donations and foster homes, who brought the kittens to the first available Vet right away. That Vet then wanted to put sweet Hero down right away! But Helga wasn’t going to allow that and wanted him saved. So, Hero’s back right leg was amputated and everything else was done to treat all the kittens medically. Then they all were nursed back to full health in a foster home. They cared for them wonderfully, as all the kittens are now perfectly healthy and full of life. Hero’s amputation site healed without an issue and the fur has almost completely grown back by now as well.

Two of the four kittens have found a home already, but Lisa and Hero were still waiting for a loving home. Helga expected that little Lisa would have maybe found a home after a while, but Hero would have likely been left behind. Not one person was even interested in Hero, or both of them in the two months since they were rescued. Even when she mentioned the two kittens to people that were looking to take cats, declined. I ended up being the first and only person to be interested and sweet Hero and Lisa.

When I read about Hero and Lisa on November 2nd, I didn’t even have to think twice. In an instant, I knew deep in my heart that I wanted both of them to have a forever home with us. On that same day, Helga and I had a phone call and agreed that she would visit us the next day (Sunday, November 3rd) to get to know Ralph and myself and see our home, to make sure that the kittens would have a good home with us.

While we were waiting to hear if we would be approved to take in the kittens, I was all over the place. I messed up that Sunday’s dinner and 3 of Ralph’s coffees. Ralph has his coffee black with two sugar cubes. I put milk in one coffee, put 6 sugar cubes in another, and no sugar in the 3rd and had it go cold as well. It was funny.

Soon after we knew, we would be able to take Hero and Lisa. The big day was on Tuesday, November 5, 2019 the kittens were brought to us at around 6pm by the awesome Helga!

That whole day I was so excited, messed up coffee, and did some shopping for the kittens and Murli, Samantha and Sonic. It was awfully rainy that day, so when I went back home from the shop with two cat toilets and a big bag of food, toys and kitty litter, I had no arm free from an umbrella. Even though I only had to walk from the tram stop to our home, I was soaking wet when I got home…

I just put everything down in the hallway. These are the two new kitty toilets I bought that day.

Murli knew something was up anyway…

2019 11 05 midday Murli after I came home from shopping
Murli in the hallway

I got everything ready for the new family members and then, finally, Helga came with Hero in Lisa in a carrier. We had them come out in our living room, where I had prepared an area where they would find everything they need close to them. We knew from Helga that Hero and Lisa were still very shy and afraid of humans. I knew that they would just hide and feel scared, not knowing what’s going on. But at least they would be able to see/smell the food right there, see a kitty toilet nearby and have places to hide and toys to play with, should they feel like it.

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The area where Hero and Lisa were let out of their carrier.

You can faintly see the little tabby boy Hero in that photo. Lisa was near Hero, but underneath that footstool. They stayed like that well into the night, and we left them, not wanting to bother them.

Ralph stayed up until about 3am, while I had gone to bed at midnight, feeling really tired. Of course, I could hardly sleep anyway, always listening for what the cats are up to, all of them. So in the early morning, about 5am, I got up to see what the kittens have been up to.

How Samantha, Murli and Sonic are reacting to Hero and Lisa

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Lisa on the cat tree by the window. Samantha had just come in too and saw Lisa for the first time.

Lisa is hardly visible, but she’s on the kitty tree, at the second level from the top. Samantha had previously smelled them already, but that morning was the first time she saw one of the kittens. Lisa wasn’t really worried over there. Samantha was stunned, like she could not believe what she saw and wondered about what these kittens were doing in her home all of a sudden.

Samantha was very curious about them though, and she wasn’t too upset, behaving normally and doing everything she always does. She’s still coming to terms with new cats being in her home and getting used to it. It’s very similar to how it was when Murli and Samantha came together in this apartment the first time. Back then it took a few weeks for everything to become normal for her and Murli.

Murli is also very curious about the kittens, but she’s not upset one bit. She’s behaving exactly as she always does. She leaves them alone, and only watches them from, and sneaks after them, to peek around the corner at them.

Sonic is the way he is, a boy who doesn’t get upset easily. He also LOVES other cats and is always friendly to them, even if they hiss. So Sonic made friends with Hero right away, the first time they met nose to nose, they became brothers. He’s trying to get closer to Lisa as well, but she’s still a bit worried, but it’s getting much less every day. By now Sonic, Hero and Lisa hang out together on the bed with me in it!

In all, there haven’t been any big problems with Murli, Samantha and Sonic accepting the new family members. It’s all pretty like I expected it to be, knowing them.

Very late on the evening Hero and Lisa arrived, I decided I feel better with the balcony door secured. So in the dark, cold and pouring rain, I started putting a cat safety net onto the frame of the balcony door. I can easily put it up and remove it, but it’s safe, not even a kitten can squeeze past it. I just became too worried about the little ones suddenly running on the balcony and trying to climb the fencing and falling off the balcony. I will soon secure the whole balcony with a cat safety net, so that they can go out on the balcony safely. Up until now, the fencing I put on the balcony railing was enough, as we didn’t have to worry about Murli, Samantha and Sonic jumping onto the railing.

The first morning after their arrival, we hear them running around and playing in the living room for a while, before hiding under the footstool again for most of the day. But the next evening, about 24 hours after their arrival, they were starting to explore the apartment and played with all the cat toys along their way.

So I sat down on the floor in the hallway, and got them curious with a toy. They came closer and I was able to play with them for the first time!

2019 11 07 6-46pm Playing with Lisa nd Hero 1st time
Playing with Hero (left) and Lisa (right) for the first time!

Otherwise, the kittens were very shy and very afraid of humans. But we’re able to gain their trust slowly, every day a little bit more. During the first 4 days, they would run away as soon as we walked nearby. But that distance before they would run was getting shorter and shorter. Hero and Lisa were also starting to follow us, peeking around the corner to watch what we were doing.

Sonic started joining in when I was playing with the kittens, which is so awesome. The picture on the left is Hero and Lisa. The one on the right is Sonic and Hero.

And so the days went by, until it’s now more than a week since their arrival! These last two nights, Hero and Lisa even came up on our bed for a while. Last night, after going to bed, Hero and Lisa both cuddled up against my legs, which were under the blanket. It was so cute. Sonic was there as well, to the right of me, as he usually is. The following photos in the slideshow are from Tuesday, in the late evening. I was playing with them before going to sleep.

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Samantha and Murli usually prefer their baskets, so it’s perfectly normal for them not to be on the bed anyway.

Hero and Lisa had lost their frightened expressions after the first two days pretty much. By now they are feeling so much more at home and enjoy watching Kitty-TV from the bedroom window. We’ve had constant rain, so the window looks mucky again even though I cleaned it about two weeks ago.

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Lisa and Hero on the bedroom window sill
2019 11 10 11-29am Sweet little Hero
Hero, with Lisa on the bedroom window sill
2019 11 10 11-29am Sweet little Lisa
Lisa, on the bedroom window sill

Hero is running just as fast as Lisa, despite having only 3 legs. He’s getting around so well! But I tried to help him out and make it a bit easier for him to get up on things, by putting in-between steps to higher up places, with chairs, cat ladders and footstools etc.

I also have a video of them playing around the kitty tree on Monday morning. It is a bit dark, as it was another awful dark day and I had only opened one side of the curtain, because the babies were sitting behind the other half, watching the street from the living room window. Later I sat down at my desk and these two started playing. So I just got the camera out and started filming anyway.

There is still more that I could write and post, but I will just put it in my next post. Every day is exciting now, with something new happening!

Like Hero and Lisa coming up to our hands most of the time now and sniffing. I’m really looking forward to them trusting us enough to give them a nice brush and cuddle.

Murli, Samantha and Sonic are getting just as much love as they always do. I love all of them so much! I’m now spoiling 5 cats and loving it! Ralph adores Hero and Lisa so much as well!

Love to all of you! Thank you so much for reading!

Everything · Pictures · Ralph and I · The Cats

Spring is coming, cat sitting and Ralphs apartment in Spain

March 24, 2019
Samantha

This afternoon was warm enough to leave the balcony door and the windows open! I put up the protective cat net on the living room window as well! It’s lovely. The cats really enjoy being out on the balcony and getting some fresh air on the windows. Samantha took the chair for herself right away of course, and had a nap on it. But we have enough chairs.

Murli was out too, but first she had her nap on the stove this afternoon. Just like the other day, when I took the following picture.

March 21, 2019
Samantha and Murli

But after her nap and having some food, Murli got some sun as well.

I put our umbrella up on the balcony every day now, because it’s just so bright in the kitchen otherwise, which easily gives me migraines. But it’s lovely at the same time that it’s finally getting warm.

I just took these pictures before I started this post. The trees are blossoming and there are primroses and daisies and all kinds of other flowers on the lawn.

Samantha is doing a lot better now with her tummy. The chronic inflammation has gone down and she’s not throwing up (except for furballs sometimes) or having the runs.

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Samantha just before, waiting while I was preparing the kitties food. That’s how she sits and looks at me when it’s time for food. 

Murli is doing perfectly well too. Her mouth is healing without problems and she’s eating properly. The latest blood test results came back a few days ago and it shows that she’s doing very well. The thyroid meds are working and everything else is perfectly fine. But she’s going to have her milligrams for her thyroid medication reduced, since the blood test shows that it’s just slightly above the desired level now.

Sonic is still on his month long treatment with the tablets that help his immune system and he’s the usual happy boy he always is. His eyes aren’t as runny anymore and his nose is better too. But he’ll be getting some long term medication for his auto immune disorder after this round of tablets is done.

March 24, 2019
Samantha and Sonic after they just woke up

In all, the cats are happy and doing well!

Also, we had an idea…

As many will know, I had to stop working because my migraines and my joint condition had gotten so bad, that I just could not do it any longer. That was in 2012. My day to day life feels so much better, but even with just normal household chores and/or grocery shopping, I reach my limits regularly. Because it does not take much for something to feel physically exhausting to me. Yet I still wonder if there is anything I can do. Now with Murlis quite expensive medication, I felt that it would be great if I could at least earn that little bit with SOMETHING.

Then Ralph said I should be a cat sitter, since I am good with cats, including cats that don’t know me, and I just love everything that has to do with cats. I did think about it before, but I thought there are so many pet sitters/cat sitters, that I would not have much of a chance without official cat sitting experience.

Still, if there is something I can do and that I can do really well, then it’s dealing with cats. I can do it physically and should not reach my limit, even if I had to visit a home with cats once or twice a day. It’s just a bit different and does not require a long stretch of strenuous activity, and does not cause stress. Even if I do get a migraine while visiting a home to care for cats, then I just take my medicine and let it work, while I sit down to pet the cats, or brush them, or play with them, without having to move around a lot.

Anyway, I thought why not. It’s not going to hurt to try. So I used my FB account to make a page for myself, offering cat sitting for Graz. You might have seen it in my sidebar already. It’s in German since it’s for my local area. But I’ll put 2nd description on it, that will be in English, since there are also a lot of English speaking people living in Graz.

What I noticed so far, and expected anyway, is that people looking for someone to feed / care for their cats in their absence, are asking specifically for someone experienced in that job. I mean I’d be really picky too if I would look for someone coming into my home while I’m not there, to take care of my fur-babies. That person would have to be really trustworthy and nothing but kind to the cats.

So we will see what happens with that adventure 😄

And another thing…

Ralphs apartment in Spain still needs to be sold. After nothing really happened with people wanting to buy it, we knew we needed to do something. So the first thing I did was to create a blog to show case the apartment, since ads usually have a limit on photos and text. Maybe some sites where I can put up ads will allow me to link to it. It will probably take a while, but it would be such a relief for Ralph if the apartment is finally sold.

That’s it for now 😊 The kitties and myself wish you all a lovely Sunday! It’s already past 9pm here, so I’ll be off to bed in a bit.

Love and hugs, Natascha and the cats 😺😸😽

Everything · Pictures · Ralph and I · The Cats

Oh no, the summer is almost over…

… and I haven’t even been posting since late spring!

Hey dear friends! Yes, it’s been a really long time, shame on me. Though, there wasn’t really a day I haven’t been thinking about many of the friends I made through this blog, and about how much I miss to post. Especially, I sometimes would just like to write little everyday blog posts, to remember them and to share them with you. Maybe that’s how I should do it, so it’s just a part of daily life. Even if I have days with migraine, I could still do something little. There are so many of you and other bloggers, who have so much more to deal with than I do, and they still post constantly.

Almost a whole year with Ralph in Austria

Anyways, the months just raced by since Ralph and I got married and we would like for time to go a bit slower. Maybe it’s because we’re just really happy! In addition, it’s almost a year now that Ralph, Samantha and Sonic arrived in Austria! It was way past midnight on September 16, 2017 that I picked them up at the airport in Vienna. Since then we’ve been together every day and enjoyed it all, except for crazy bureaucracy of course…

On October 4, it will be a year that we’ve been in our apartment, our home!

Bad weather all year

It was a rather rainy spring and summer, with the temperatures way below of what they normally are. So it was a big difference for Ralph, coming from the lovely warm southern Spain to southern Austria, where it started off as a very cold and rainy fall late 2017, then turned into a very very cold and snowy winter that lasted till March, and the spring and summer were like I said rainy and too cool. That whole year was nothing like it normally would be here. Hopefully, it will be back to normal next year…

We also had a couple bad storms in the early summer. One afternoon, I just barely made it into our building, when the hail started falling behind me, with hailstones as big as golf balls… Another storm came through the same month, and the storm wind ripped off flat metal roofs, big trees fell and even the tree in our garden is now just half of what it was.

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The tree right after the storm
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Close up of the broken tree branch
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The broken off branch lying behind the tree and another branch of the tree is just dangling on the right

The photos in the following slideshow show the damage of that storm in the park near our home. It looked like this all over Graz though.

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The Cats

Murli had her birthday on August 17! She turned 13. Since Ralph doesn’t know the exact date of Samantha and Sonics birth date, I decided to make August 17 the birthday of Samantha and Sonic as well. All three got special treats and food all day and the next.

Unfortunately, by the end of August, I noticed Murli had her little tongue out slightly all evening and didn’t close her mouth completely, but I could not see anything, and she was eating normally too. The next morning I saw that her lower left fang was leaning all the way to the left. It was obviously loose, as it wasn’t like that the night before. We had no idea what was going on, or how it happened. The only thing we could think of was that she might have had an accident while jumping. Murli acted completely normal, was not in any pain, as she kept eating without avoiding one side.

But it had to be taken care of so I called our Vet Lady to make an appointment for Murli.

Murli at the Vet to have her tooth sorted out
Murli in her bag, not happy to be at the Vet

We took a Taxi to the Vet, as it was a bit of a distance from home. As long as Murli is in a carrier she’s fine and not upset. She only gets upset the moment she smells that she’s at the Vet, poor little girl… She wasn’t allowed any food all morning, due to the possibility of sedation.

The Vet and I rolled Murli all up in a blanket to keep her still while she was checked out. The tooth was very loose, and the Vet said she’ll see how Murli reacts and if there is any resistance she will have to be sedated. But Murli didn’t even flinch, it didn’t seem to hurt her, and the tooth was almost falling out by itself. Apparently, Murli must have had toothache a while ago, for quite some time, as the root of the fang had already dissolved. I was quite shocked hearing that, as Murli never acted strangely all these months. She always ate normally, her tail was up all the time and never gave any reason to worry. Normally I notice any little change in her and know when something isn’t right, just not this time.

In addition, the Vet also did blood work, and the results were perfect, except for her liver values, which were slightly elevated. So she got tablets for that, which I give her once a day (she loves them, as they taste like treats). Murli has always had problems with reacting badly to all kinds of cat foods. There isn’t much that she won’t throw up or the the runs from and it was like that since she was a kitten. She has some great food though that she is doing fine with. She also loves anything with milk… Icecream, cream, yoghurt etc. But I now take extra good care that she won’t eat anything except her own food, as anything else could be a reason for the elevated values.  In a few weeks, I’ll bring Murli to the Vet again, for another blood test. Then we’ll see if anything has changed. So we’ll see.

There is a difference now, after the tooth is gone. Murli seems to be really relaxed and even more happy than before. So she must have been in pain in some way before, even if she didn’t really show it, or act like she was. It’s quite obvious now with how relaxed she seems. I feel so bad that I had no idea anything was going on with her. The tooth looked even normal before, you would have never guessed anything is wrong with it.

Poor girl!!!

Murli after the Vet
Murli right after the Vet

A few hours later after we’ve been at the Vet, Murli was really happy and having a good stretch up on the fridge <3

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A little later the same day and she was feeling great! 

As for Sonic and Samantha? They are doing purrfectly fine! We thankfully have gotten some sunny weather now, so the three of them catch up on getting some sun on the balcony.

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Murli (left), Samantha, Sonic (right)
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Samantha and Sonic
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Samantha and Sonic

Especially Murli and Samantha are out on the balcony all the time. Lets hope we’ll have a sunny and rather warm late summer and fall, would be nice!

Currently

As of now, I’m writing on another post, and I want to try to post a lot more, even if it’s just tiny little posts or pictures. Documenting life, our life with the cats and whatever else.

Ralph and I want to do a couple things for our apartment. Make it really pretty and get all the lamps and pictures up. It’s lovely already, but there are still some things left that need to be done. I’ll take pictures of it for sure.

There’s also a really weird neighbour that I want to write about…

I think I’ve rambled on for long enough now…

Have a lovely rest of the week everyone! Much love from Ralph, the cats and me!

Everything · Our friends

In loving memory of my “littul furend” Purrince Siddhartha Henry

In loving memory of my littul furend

Murli and I have been friends with LadyMum Sherri-Ellen for a few years now, and during that time Sherri-Ellen became a wonderful friend, as did her littul mankat Purrince Siddhartha Henry; he stole my heart instantly. Hearing about his story, about their daily lives and all those countless long emails and comments we send back and forth over the years. Always full of love, kindness and fun.

The littul Purrince had the same white spot on his eye as Sonic does, both stemming from the same problem as kittens. So they called Sonic a “brother from another mother”.

There are no words for the loss of a beloved pet, who was and is loved like a family member. He was only 4 years old, but he was very sick and has been since he was a kitten. They did all they could to fight that disease, but recently he was getting so much more unwell and he was in pain.

There are no words enough to make the pain that Sherri-Ellen is in right now any less. Only I will always keep that friendship to the sweet Purrince alive in my hearts and mind, and I’ll always be there for my dear friend Sherri-Ellen.

Your friends furever, Natascha, Murli, Sonic and Samantha

Link to Siddhartha Henry’s and Sherri-Ellen’s last post: https://nylabluesmum.wordpress.com/2018/08/31/buudha-kat-called-mee-home-to-him/

 

Everything · Pictures · Ralph and I · The Cats

March 5, 2018 Snow, Ice and once more waiting for good news

Hey lovely readers! Here’s the latest of us trying to get married in Graz:

At the moment, we’re waiting and hoping for the best again. Since the registrar requires a certified translation by a court translator for each of Ralph’s documents, and Apostilles (Legalisation) for each of the same documents, we had to try and get that sorted out.

The translations are underway now, and hopefully, we’ll get them back by the end of this week.

For the Apostilles (Legalisation), we had to send Ralph’s original documents off to the UK via courier. We had to fill out an application form online for it and pay. The next morning (Friday), I had the documents shipped to the UK by courier. Now we can only wait and hope that the documents get legalised and that there won’t be any bureaucratic hurdles. If everything goes as it should, they will send the documents with each Apostille back to us by the end of this week.

And if all of that worked out, the last thing to hope for is that the registrar won’t come up with yet another requirement for certified certificates and/or translations.

This is, or should be the last hurdle now and according to the registrar, we can get married as soon as we have the translations and Apostilles. Which would be, or could be next week even! I’m not counting on that though. Until we have everything back and the registrar accepts it all without another request for certificates, I won’t get my hopes up too much.

Ralph and I will finally be able to relax and just enjoy everything after all of that. I will have my mind in the right place again to blog normally, be more cheerful and communicate more with all of you lovely readers.

As for everything else: It’s March, and like almost everywhere in Europe it doesn’t look or feel like it at all. Here in Graz, Austria, the last couple of weeks have been bitterly cold with nights and mornings temperatures between -18°C (-0.4°F) and -15°C (5°F). During the day, the temperatures didn’t go above -5°C (23°F), often it was even colder. We had lots of snow as well.

March 1, 2018 09-58-58
Icicles everywhere.
March 1, 2018 10-02-27
More icicles!

The temperatures increased to around freezing point over the weekend, but it’s been very foggy and overcast.

This was Sunday, the view over the city from the Schlossberg webcam. Today, it looked exactly the same…

It’s mostly for Ralph and the cats that I wish for more warmth. Although it’s lovely and warm in our apartment, and the snow looks beautiful, it’s no fun going outside like that. Ralph is cold a lot more easily than I am.

But even if it’s -100° and raining icicles, Ralph and I will go out to get married if we get our appointment soon! 😂

For now, we’re staying in most of the time. We enjoy being together all the time, every second of it.

Murli is happy, and so are Sonic and Samantha. I’m really looking forward to making our balcony pretty and cat safe, and the windows too. Will be lovely, for the summer breeze to come through the open windows and the open balcony door. All of us will love it!

Everyone in the kitchen
Our kitchen

There will be nice walks in the nearby park, where we can see a bit of the sunset.

March 1, 2018 4:38pm
This is the park near our home.
March 1, 2018 4:38pm
The sunsets will be nice from here

I will do my best to reply to all your sweet comments. Shame on me… It’s normally the first thing I do in the day as soon as I have time. Hopefully, things will get back to normal soon, once we can relax and all the worrying about bureaucrats is over.

Thank you so much, for always being so kind and leaving such wonderful comments on my blog.

The cats, Ralph and I love you all!