Tuesday, April 4, 2023

Better Day Today

 It has been a while since I did a Houdini update. This is Houdini. When his boy goes to bed at night, he doesn't know what to do with himself. Eventually, he decides that he'll come snuggle with me, being that I am marginally better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick. In this particular shot, I was trying to fold laundry. He's trying to convince me that I've got more important things to tend to. 

He is still a bit jumpy, but he is quite the people cat. His hiding behaviors have stopped, which means that he can have roaming priviledges of the whole house. He hangs out in William's room while we read Harry Potter. He hasn't quite figured out how to get up on William's loft bed, although he would dearly love to. 

Unfortunately, he doesn't understand sleeping at night, and wanders around meowing for people to get up and play with him. Hard to ignore. He's a pretty vocal critter. So, we began shutting the door at the top of the stairs at night. Being a thinking sort of cat, he figured out in pretty short order that when you pound your little paws on that door, it sounds like thunder and your humans get up. They are not happy, but they are up. As a result, he is confined to the kitchen (with basement access) at night. His greatest joy is his boy coming down the stairs in the morning. William lets him out of the kitchen and spends a few minutes cuddling him. 

He has a 'toy box', a little basket filled with cat toys. It is fun to see him nose through them and select one. He loves his little catnip mice, and one day he'll catch that red dot. He's pretty determined. All in all, he's turned into a friendly, personable cat who loves his people and being petted. He's begun to be more social around other people as well. 

Yesterday was a frustrating day because for everything we got done, another thing was added to the to-do list. It was a discouraging day, where nothing seemed to go according to plan. 

Today looked better. Sort of. We got about 1/3 of the siding ripped of the last side of the house. This stuff is double nailed. Being rotten, it also has the unfortunate tendency to break and splinter as you pry it away so that you're tearing off small pieces of siding rather than strips. Tomorrow, we'll go back and hit it again. 

The severe weather called for tomorrow has faded away. Now the thunderstorms are not expected to hit until evening, which will give us the day to work on that siding. It will be warm. 

When we hauled the load of siding up to the burn pile, Tim and I walked down into the woods (well doused with tick repellant) so that I could show him that tangle of trees. One bit of exciting news? That's just over the boundary line. Not our trees. We do have a half dozen down on our property but the big mess is someone else's mess. He's a logger, so he has the equipment to skid that stuff out of there if that's what he chooses to do. 


42 comments:

  1. Probably your storm that is tomorrow is the one we've been dealing with all afternoon. They even canceled school right after lunch due to it. Three tornadoes touched down thus far but the nearest was 40 miles away. But it is humid and warm still at 10 pm and they are still heading closer and so I am up instead of fast asleep. I'm hoping they fizzle, the front passes and cool air will be the order of the rest of the night.

    I dislike projects like your siding project when it is three times as much work than it normally is and there is nothing you can do but keep plugging away at it.

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    1. Take care out there. These storms are packing a real punch. It seems as if ever day, we are hearing about yet another violent storm and it's accompanying destruction.

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    2. They finally arrived at 2 am and passed by after a short intense burst of rain leaving behind 0.1". They are now heading your way. I hope the die off again before arriving.

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    3. They are calling for the storms to hit this evening. There is the possibility of them becoming severe if the sun is shining and it gets really warm, which is the first time I ever heard something like that. Right now the sun is shining brightly. It's interesting that they don't seem to be able to predict precisely what to expect.

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  2. At least Houdini is not living up to his name and escaping from the kitchen at night. It's great to hear that he's becoming a more sociable cat. I suppose the same thing applies to cats as to children. When I was caring for children with learning difficulties one of my line managers once enlightened me when I was becoming frustrated with the lack of progress of one youngster - "We always overestimate how much can be achieved in a day, and underestimate how much progress can be made in a year". That has cheered me up in all kinds of situations over the years.

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    1. You worked with a wise manager. It does keep one's eyes focused on the long term, doesn't it? Houdini was such an escaper. He'd see his chance, and he'd be gone, and he would not come out of his hidey hole. He seems to have stopped feeling the need to escape.

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  3. Good to see Houdini relaxing.
    You need to remember to do that too, as you make good progress on the house

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    1. He is a pretty chill character . Tim needs the reminder. I just follow along.

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  4. Glad to hear that Houdini has settled in so well and adores William.

    I guess the projects will just come along, a step at a time, and then you will realize you're nearly there with them.

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    1. I think that I need to adopt John's words: "We always overestimate what we can accomplish in a day, and underestimate what can be done in a year."

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  5. One minute you have a feral cat the next a home cat, magic must have been worked. It is very interesting to see the refurbishment of these houses, so different to our buildings.

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    1. Strangely, things seemed to happen when the house was empty, when Tim was in the hospital, and I was with him, and William was at my son's house. Houdini had a chance to explore the empty house. Once he got comfortable in the hosue by himself, he decided that humans were handy as well. We feed him, clean his litter box, pet him, activate the red dot. Not bad to have around. He settled right down. The change was amazing.

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  6. You have done such a good job with that cat! My first cat ( 6 weeks old ) turned out to be feral....she was from a cat rescue place many years ago, and I didn't know anything about cats until it was too late. She turned out not too badly, but could never be trusted not to bite or scratch if she felt like it!

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    1. Houdini's never been a biter or a scratcher, even when he was wild. He's a hider, not a fighter.

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  7. Another storm? Our wind and rain days seem quite tame really.

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    1. They've been rolling across the country, one right after another. They'll be reporting one and predicting another at the same time.

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  8. Sounds like Houdini struts his stuff and enjoys sauntering around his new abode.

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  9. Nice to read the cat update as i presently have one purring and kneading on my lap. And sometimes trying to bite me as i type on my tablet.

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    1. Houdini's a purrer as well. Nothing better than a lapful of happy cat.

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  10. So like a cat to at first hide from any human interaction and now to want it day and night. Especially night, it sounds like. He looks a lot like my Maurice.

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    1. The first time I saw a picture of Maurice, I thought the same.

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  11. Can you just leave the downed trees where they are for awhile? I notice they do that in our local forest preserves.
    We're having lots of storms here in Illinois too. But at least it is getting warmer...

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    1. The four in the woods can stay put for a while. No rush on them. They are not good firewood.

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  12. You really stuck with Houdini.

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    1. It finally looks as if he's decided to stick with us, as well.

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  13. Someone sounds spoiled. 😉 I'm glad things are working out with Houdini now.

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    1. He loves to be petted. He stretches and rolls and pulls your hand if you stop. He's quite a purrer as well.

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  14. Ginger tabby cats are wonderful, especially once their humans have been well-trained. 😊 All kidding aside, so glad to hear Houdini has integrated so wonderfully into the household, and has "his boy" William and you.

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    1. LOL. Yes, indeed. He has us trained. He is a sweety. I did not know if I'd ever be able to say that about him.

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  15. You need some Ginnie hens to roam the property when you are there, they are known as tick eaters. They do roost in trees at night and are usually safe.

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  16. We really wouldn't have chickens there until we actually are on site. There are all sorts of predators there, even weasels and fishers, which will climb trees. It would be unfair to the animal. But once we are up there full time, it is a definite plan.

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  17. Thanks for the picture of Houdini, I love orange cats, have always been my favorite. He is turning into quite the critter. :)

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    1. He certainly is! He had me worried, but he got things settled in his feral little mind.

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  18. I've read that if you really play with a cat and it's string toys and light catching during the day, they don't bother folks so much at night. That's some attempt at wearing them out. Supposedly, they want something to hunt at night like they did a jillion years ago. It's really nice that you've been so patient to help him adjust to indoors. Linda in Kansas

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    1. Oh, he gets a lot of play when William gets home from school. They tear around after each other. Today, it was warm enough that I threw the windows open on the second floor. I pulled a bench up from a vanity so that he could watch the street activity. It interested him quite a lot. He also likes to sit in the door way and sun himself. He has no desire to go outside, but he does like to look.

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  19. So sweet that Houdini is so friendly now! Our cat Mickey died a year ago at age 14.. as of now, we have no pets🥺I hesitate to get a new pet since we’re away so much during the summer.. but I sure miss having a cat to cuddle, - and our chickens! Best wishes with the renovation! Xo,
    Ricki

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    1. It's funny, Ricki. My last cat was a marmalade cat as well. I took Houdini, sight unseen, because a tenant had trapped him and was paying to have him neutered. I told her we'd take the cat and pay for the neuter. He is the very image of my Paddy. It was such a shock to see him. I didn't want him, but I couldn't not take him. So I did. It's worked out well despite my misgivings.

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  20. How wonderful that Houdini and William have each other. I think they both benefit from that relationship.

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    1. They do. William loves that cat, and that cat loves him.

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  21. Houdini has been such a great success but not without patience.

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