Category Archives: Munchkin

Cat Scratching Fever

No, this is not a blog about cats. But, our cats are doing quite well, thanks!

See? They get along splendidly now.

The two kittens, or cats actually, cuddling.

Too bad about that eye, this would have been a cute shot.

If you don’t want to hear anymore about what they’ve destroyed or how much UPS is making off of my deliveries for products to keep them happy and our apartment in order,  stop here.

(And maybe just look at a kitten! picture. Eeeh! The cuteness hurts my teeth.)

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Please sir may I have some more?

Still quite the street urchin, Scarlett will try and eat anything. Along with snatching food right out from under Fergus’s nose, using a clever monkey-like maneuver with her little paw to drag everything into her waiting open mouth, she’ll have a go at stealing anything not securely sealed in thick layers of plastic.

Nothing is really safe from her, but she has a particular fondness for bread. We discovered this when Oliver baked a loaf and left it to cool on the counter. Twenty minutes later, he found the whole back end missing, nibbled off while it was still steaming hot. This was also after she’d already lapped up the entire egg wash he’d prepared for the crust when his back was turned.

The egg theft was probably a healthy move for her. I wasn’t so sure about the bread, but after eating half her weight she didn’t even bloat, so apparently it’s ok.

We’re learning, albeit slowly, to keep things out of her reach. In the meantime, butter and cheese slices go missing and crackers get mysterious rounded edges when left on the counter out of direct line of sight.

Oh, and very spicy curried cauliflower seems to be her thing too.

Kittens! Or how I hijacked blog traffic.

This is now, officially, hands-down, my most popular post ever. At first I wasn’t sure what was driving traffic during my infrequent (but smashingly brilliant) posts. But comparing it with my google search results, the pattern became clear.

If you’re visiting this site for the first time, this is probably you:

A working stiff , you just arrived at the office. It’s the end of the month or the beginning, your project has just ended, or begun and the last thing you want to do at that moment is actually work.

You sit at your computer and decide to do something that makes you look productive, but is also fun.

That’s right, you’re surfing.

If you just googled “Kittens!”, welcome to my site, feel free to read about if you want, but I suspect you have to get to work soon, so here’s your crack:

Kittens! Cute Kittens! Chubby kittens! Baby Cats!

Kittens! Cute Kittens! Chubby kittens! Baby Cats! Whatever you call your poison, here they are. Enjoy.

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Kitten Update – We’re Making Progress

She's quite the lady next to him.

At the close of week three with a new cat in the household, things are finally settling down. Here’s a list of updates:

She’s not pregnant, just prone to chubbiness

It appears we've dodged the bullet.

Scarlett looks like she will be a dainty little cat, but she’s got a street urchin’s appetite, so we’re gonna have to watch her. The belly grows depending on what she’s able to stuff in there, so we’re pretty sure there isn’t any other trouble brewing.

Drugs are bad

No feel gud. Go way.

The worms meds we gave her were like kitten drano and wiped her digestive tract out of commission for two weeks. The first week she was really suffering and needed a lot of looking after. Now after two weeks of shots and digestive flora supplements, she’s bounced back and pooping like a champion.

Fergus wants to eat her or…um…well

They're not yet ready to cuddle, but I keep hoping.

Just like with the last little one in the household, Fergus could barely contain himself from licking and chomping on the kitten like he was trying to get to the chewy center of a Tootsie Pop. Also, he seems to notice this one is female. This make us uncomfortable sometimes, we’d like to think they could develop a family bond…but either it’s more of a backcountry one or he’s trying to be that creepy uncle in every family whose lap you know better than to sit on.

Apparently she's delicious.

He’s fixed, and she will be soon, so nothing can happen – and really nothing does – and it seems to be tapering off, we hope.

This is as close as they've come to co-sleeping.

Fergus loves his bag again

He’s way too small for it, but ever since I started transporting Scarlett to the doctor in it, Fergus has been taking every opportunity to snooze in his old bag and keep her out of it. It seems unfair to stick him in plastic crate and let her travel in style. I will now have to get around to getting him a new one.

Iz mein, U cant havvit.

Squirrel!?!

And for the Google image surfers coming over on kitten searches, may I suggets these sites:

Cutestkittenever

Daily Kitten

Sleepy Kittens (it’s a photo-song-montage)

And…CuteOverLoad Kittens!

Now go waste your Friday somewhere else. :-)

A funny thing happened as we were leaving Austria

Two weeks of winter vacation in the Carinthian Alps resulted this year in a bit more than good times and an extra few kilos.

…a stowaway, hopefully without too much baggage of her own.

Hot Topics: Red Cat Names and Burning Man

If you don’t post much, you have no business checking out your blog stats. I know this. I am guilty of this. And yet, I checked mine.

Hot topics on my blog of late? Burning Man gear and names for red cats. I should actually switch that because names for red cats comes first. Who would have known that names for red cats were so hard to come up with? I didn’t.

So to make things a little easier, here’s what I didn’t post when I got Fergus. Behold the alternative names for the red kitten:

Tony (as in the tiger, grrr)
Finnegan (but that was taken)
O’Malley (too many syllables)
Shaemus
Rory (but my friend of the same name might have been confused)
Guinness (more suited to a black cat, really)
Whiskey
Rusty*
Rufus*
Angus*
Paddy
*

…And my second runner up: Winston (which Oliver hated and thus vetoed)

There was also a whole list that emerged from a drunken discussion between my sister-in-law and the proprietor of our favorite restaurant that ended in him surveying the entire clientele that night. The names were kind of what you would expect from people in that condition and not much help.

And so after much soul-searching, Fergus got his name.  I think it’s a great name for a cat and it has the added bonus of not being a contender for people names for our friends and family, something people in our generation often notice way too late. (“Can’t name her Emma, sweetie, Emma pees on my laundry.”)

And for you Burning Man people, my updated shopping list is here, with a bit more explanation here. T-minus 12 days people. Do you know where your gorilla tape is?

*Updated, thanks Christina!

The Great Catotel Experiment

**Update – Fergus seems to have weathered that a lot better than expected. True, he’d hidden himself in a corner when we got there to collect him, but he was healthy and intact and even gave us a headbutt greeting when picked up. I’m feeling better about the upcoming two weeks he’ll be spending there, although I still wish the place had a webcam so I could check in.**

Tonight begins a big experiment. We’ve not been successful in finding a new super-cat-babysitter like we had in Munich to look after Fergus.

With our annual trip to the US, we’ve had to compromise our principals. We’ve opened our minds to boarding him.

We’d looked into services that come to the house, but since we still haven’t met our neighbors, the risk seemed too high that he’d be left alone, fed irregularly, or perhaps not at all.

So this weekend is the big test. Ahead of us is a three day weekend in Austria. Ahead of Fergus is a short stint at what I’m calling (and hoping will be like) Summer Camp.

We checked it out two weeks ago. The lady seemed nice and the cats content. I saw plenty of places he could hide and mope. To give him an edge, I stopped clipping his nails.

Hope he doesn’t get his fuzzy butt kicked.

Home office mate



Home office mate, originally uploaded by meganinmunich.

Working from home two days a week has its benefits. It is hard to turn around and ignore him when he’s like this though.

Taking it easy (or ramblings from an invalid)

I’m home. I was at the doctor this morning because I just can’t seem to shake this lingering thing I’ve got and in a weak moment let her convince me that I need to rest and not go to work today. Of course instead of really resting I’m working from my laptop. I was home last week on Wednesday for the same reason and the same thing happened. Only difference was that we had fabulous weather, mildly warm temperatures and blue ‘bavarian’ skies dotted with fluffy white clouds. Not a bad change of scenery, although the fact that I am sick home today is testament to the fact that it didn’t work its magic.

Today it’s pouring and that isn’t nearly as interesting. Fergus likes it just fine however thanks to Ollie. After some nervous moments where Fergus did not show sufficient respect for gravity and inspired from an incident where a certain little fuzzbutt took a stab at flying and failed, Oliver went to the baumarkt the other day and bought some pigeon netting which he then wove onto the outside railing of our balcony so that Fergus could finally go out unsupervised and off the leash without me constantly hovering. Since then he has pretty much set up permanent residency. As soon as we’re home he begs for the doors to be opened and then rushes out to the net to peer at our neighbors. The netting doesn’t look too bad (we plan to switch it out for clear net just as soon as we can find it) and as long as Fergus doesn’t shatter his hip, I’m willing to let him play “Rear Window” whenever he wants.

Here’s a picture of the balcony from last Wednesday (nice weather):

See? The net doesn’t look that bad and it’s only on the fence, not the covering the entire space. There is nothing greater than being able to open the doors in the spring time, sit outside and not have Fergus throw himself at the glass, bleating and whining for egress.

Another amusing bonus to sitting at home last week during the nice weather was neighbor-watching, in particular our new neighbor with apparently no day job and plenty of time to work out. See him? Look in the top left corner. Now you see him? Squint harder. Ok, try having a look-see here:

Doesn’t really do justice to his overly built up biceps, very American frat-boyesque. I have a feeling I know who’s been leaving all the Playboys in the trash instead of putting them in the recycling.

So Fergus is enjoying the balcony, did I already mention that?

This is even despite a tragic incident on the weekend where we lost a chair. It was Sunday, early evening, and we were having dinner on the balcony, sharing a bottle of wine when, without warning, with a huge crash the chair completely gave way underneath me. One minute I was sipping wine out of one of our ‘good’ glasses (wedding present, so damn expensive I won’t even blow in their direction without padding the floor with towels) and the next minute I was sitting on a pile of firewood, glass held high in the air. I was successful at saving the glass and so thrilled about that, that I didn’t notice for a second that Fergus was buried in the rubble. I felt this squirming and wriggling underneath me and then this orange blur of bristling fur ran into the bedroom and under the covers. He needed a nap to get over that one. But he was back within four hours like a champ. It may take me longer to get over it as every balcony in the building was occupied at the time, providing many witnesses and much fodder for gossip.

Being a German who believes in quality craftsmanship, Oliver insisted on hanging onto the corpse with the intention of taking it back to the store.

At least now they can’t claim that the weight of our asses is what broke the chair. We’ve been dieting. Successfully! We’ve pretty much shed all the weight that we packed on last Fall (plus a few extra). Three cheers for the 1950′s housewife diet! Naked we look pretty damn good. I say that because none of our clothes fit anymore, but since we’re still going we don’t want to buy any new one. That means my workable wardrobe is down to three pairs of pants and a skirt. Everything else either falls off or has a ridiculous case of saggy grandpa butt going on.

When we get closer to the final digits, I’m hauling all the clothes we want to keep to a really good tailor at Sendlinger Tor downtown to fix the grandpa butt problem. I’m going to be a little embarrassed taking pants from Zara to guy who works on Dolce, but I’m hoping the novelty of it will amuse him instead of insult him.

Time for a conference call, ‘scuse me.

Playing with Fire

05_04_51-candle_web.jpg
Fergus had a little lesson last night about sashaying around right in front of a candle – the fact that his tail was immediately snuffed out probably meant that he didn’t learn anything. I think I walked away from the experience a bit wiser. Pity I wasn’t fast enough to keep the apartment from stinking like fur. Hi there, everyone.
 
Man, has this New Year been a busy one already. Been so busy (and stressed) that I’ve only just managed to take the Christmas balls off the horns pictured in the previous entry. The big surprise of 2008 thus far: darned if it doesn’t look like I went and got myself a pretty decent promotion.
Lesson learned: that devil-may-care-I’ll-say-what-I-think attitude one has when one is about to leave a job is just the kind of cologne that should be worn to discussions with upper management.

Saturday I went out a bought the second most expensive outfit of my life (second only to my wedding dress) that is supposed to bolster me through some really uncomfortable, super-duper important meetings this week that will decide whether this really turns into a big step up (or a baby step to the side). When my mom asked me last night what I’d bought, my answer was,

“Well, I started at Esprit and kept going up until I hit Italy.”

I’m out of practice with this league of dress. In my thus-far casual dress work environment in Germany, I’ve gotten very used to H&M with the occasional sprinkling of Massimo Dutti. I might have raised the bar a little high with these new duds, but I feel great wearing them. So great in fact that it almost erases the pangs of guilt I feel when I remember the grand total at the register.

One piece had to be altered; I’m picking that up this afternoon. Tomorrow I’ll be ready for bear.

Loads of backdated stories to come for all three of you who are still reading this thing. ;-)