Category Archives: Encouragement

Paladin masters playing with toys!

When a feral cat becomes transformed to domesticity, we see certain changes. We believe our home is Paladin’s first home. The vet who neutered him believes he is four years old. That’s a long time for a cat to sustain himself with a roaming life.

Signs of a feral cat transforming to domestic status are wanting to be around humans, desiring to be in a home, exploring his home room by room, and engaging with humans and toys. Playing with toys is indicative of home life. Feral hobos don’t pack toys. They wander from porch to porch seeking to be fed, not looking for toys to play with. Feral cats fear opening doors because they fear the doors will close behind them and trap them.

Paladin began his life with us a few months ago. He came to our porch for food. He would come for one, two, or three meals–morning, afternoon, or evening, almost every day, and I worried about him if he didn’t show up at all.

At some inexplicable point, I became attached to Paladin and gave him his name. Paladin seemed to attach himself to my husband and me, and we to him. We wanted him to be in our house, but first he would need to be neutered.

Paladin was neutered March 22, just a bit more than two weeks ago today. Our cat Effie accepted him graciously. Paladin took to his new litter box immediately, with no mistakes. He loves his food. We gave him a box to hide or sleep in, and he used it for both. He now sleeps under our bed. Effie sleeps with us, and I don’t think she’ll give that up.

Following the neutering surgery, the vet told us to keep Paladin indoors for ten days, and two weeks before getting him wet. It was a happy day for Paladin when he could finally go out!

Paladin spends his outdoor time in Effieland, just as Effie does. They are sometimes outside together, and sometimes individually. Effieland is fenced all around and overhead to exclude predators. Eagles, hawks, raccoons, coyotes, foxes, errant dogs, and other cats abound on and around our 2.4 acres. Roaming free is no longer an option.

Paladin now roams freely throughout our house. At first I carried him through rooms he had not yet entered on his own. Now he considers every room to be his to visit or nap in. He has mastered his indoor and outdoor territory, including our laps.

And we have begun introducing Paladin to toys. He hasn’t yet taken to chasing toys, but he likes to tackle bobbing things suspended over his head. The toy shown in these photos taken by my husband cost exactly nothing to make: a scrap of fabric attached with fishing line to a yardstick. Paladin’s engagement with his toy tells us he is home.



Filed under Cats, Encouragement, Home Life, Paladin, Photos

Paladin adjusting

Paladin has needed a lot of post-op rest.  He eats sufficient moist and dry food and drinks plenty of water.  He uses his litter box faithfully. He is not yet ready to go outdoors for an Effieland romp, because he needs first to get to know the house. The anesthetic has finally worn off, but the surgery itself has a longer recovery time, about 10 days. Some pain might persist, but if it does, Paladin is bravely uncomplaining. He is quiet and sleeping most of the day, but receptive to petting.

Effie entered my study this morning, stalking Paladin.  When she was sure she had sufficient escape clearance, she opened her mouth and hissed loudly at him. He responded silently with a look that said, “Whatever, Lady.”

This afternoon, Paladin received Effie graciously,  even though she marched toward him like a feline drill sergeant, though I know she meant well.

Hang in there, Pal. . . .


Filed under Action & Being, Animals, Cats, Effie, Encouragement, Home Life, Paladin, Photos

Effie reviews plans for the fuselage of Vic’s plane

As some of our friends know, my husband Vic is building an airplane. Vic is using public domain Piper plans for a PA-14, a four-seat bush plane, but our plane will have two seats. Effie, always faithfully curious of why we are occupying her floor space, looks on with supervisorial interest.


Filed under Action & Being, Cats, Effie, Encouragement, Home Life, Photos, Technology

Grounded encouragement from Horatius Bonar

I am nine pages from finishing God’s Way of Peace: A Book for the Anxious, by Horatius Bonar (1808-1889), and found this passage particularly compelling. I believe the book’s title is absolutely appropriate and the book itself encouraging and important for all Christians.

“You have been expecting faith to descend, like an angel from heaven, into your soul, and hope to be lighted up like a new star in your firmament. It is not so. Whilst the Spirit’s work is beyond nature, it is not against nature. He displaces no faculty; he disturbs no mental process; he does violence to no part of our moral framework; he creates no new organ of thought or feeling. His office is to set all to rights within you; so that you never feel so calm, so true, so real, so perfectly natural, so much yourself, – as when he has taken possession of you in every part; and filled your whole man with his heavenly joy. Never do you feel so perfectly free, – less constrained and less mechanical, – in every faculty, as when he has ‘brought every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.’ The heavenly life imparted is liberty, and truth, and peace; it is the removal of bondage, and pain.” Horatius Bonar: God’s Way of Peace: A Book for the Anxious


Filed under Christianity, Encouragement, Theology, Thoughts & Reading