Sunday, April 11, 2010


Click to play this Smilebox slideshow: Dedication to Gizmo
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Sunday, March 21, 2010

Cats, cats, cats

I'm seriously thinking of changing my name to Noah. I feel like I live in an ark. There are animals everywhere! We have cats, dogs, rabbits, hermit crabs and a bird. As if this wasn't enough, let's talk about the feral cats. We came home from work one day and there was a cat sitting on our front porch. She ran when we approached, clearly afraid of us. After a few days, she would meow when she saw us. I thought she was hungry, so I brought a bowl of cat food out to her and she scarfed it down. From that day on, I would feed her when I got home from work. Soon she would come up to me and rub against my legs. I named her "LT" because we had a cat named Leibchen Tecumsah and this cat kind of looks like her. Before long, I saw another cat eating LT's food, so I got a bigger bowl and left enough food for the 2 for them. Now I'm feeding at least 7 cats and sometimes more. I think the message is out to the feral cats of the community that there is a sap providing free food to any and all! For all I know, they may becoming from other cities to dine at our house! When it started getting cold, my wife and I felt sorry for LT, so one night, I opened up the side door to our garage and she went in. Now she has a litter box, food bowl and water bowl in our garage. She sleeps in there every night, and some days that are cold and rainy. She won't leave the garage if it's wet outside. When LT wants to get into the garage she sits on the window ledge outside the living room window and meows at me. I get up and open the side door to the garage and in she goes. Talk about spoiled! Now there is another feral cat who runs into the garage before I can close the door. She (or he) won't come near me, but enjoys the benefits of my generosity. I used to buy a small bag of cat food for our little feral friend. Then I had to start buying a 16 pound bag, then 2 bags, then 3. Now I buy the giant (25 pound) bags of cat food at our local warehouse store (CostCo) because its cheaper. I'm buy three bags of cat food for the feral cats each month. I'm going broke! But those cats depend on me now, and I just can't stop feeding them. I'm hoping to start catching them and taking them to the vet to be spayed or neutered, so they won't reproduce. Our former priest says we're doing a good thing by providing food and shelter to so may animals. He said we are being good stewards to God's creatures. I hope God helps us pay for these guys, cause I know I can't stop feeding them (I'm just to big of a sap!).

Friday, November 27, 2009


Gizmo, Gizmaroon, Giz, Gizzie, Gizmo the Gizmapolitan Kitty... these were all the names of this beautiful little girl that came into our lives 10 years ago a couple of weeks before Thanksgiving.

I went to pick up my 12 year old son from band practice and found him sitting outside of his middle school playing with something. I couldn't tell what it was, but when he saw me he started to walk towards our car and I could see this cute kitten following him. He wanted to keep her, but we really didn't need another pet. I told him to get in the car, but he curled up his bottom lip and stared to cry saying "It's cold out here and she'll freeze. There's no food for her, she'll starve". So I told him we could take her home, but we had to find a place for her.

To my son's credit, he called all of his friends, but no one wanted a kitten. I called all of the no-kill animal shelters, but being so close to the holidays, no one would take her. We drove around the school looking for signs saying someone was missing a kitten. None were to be found.

I was talking to my girlfriend (now she's my wife) and told her about the kitten. I described the kitten to her and my girlfriend said it sounded like she looked like the character Gizmo from the movies "Gremlins". I hadn't seen the movie, but it sounded like a good name, so that's what we named her.

After a couple of weeks of looking for a home for Gizmo, we had become so attached to her that we just kept her. She was a small bundle of joy. She slept with my son and followed him around the house whenever he was there. He was definitely her person.

When she was about 2 years old she started coughing. I took her to the vet and he said that she had asthma. He put her on prednisone. She got better, but would have occasional bouts of it.

My son graduated from high school and left for the Army. Gizzie missed him and would sit outside of his bedroom door, meowing to get in. Her care became my responsibility.

That's when we got really close. When we moved to Arlington a few months later her asthma got worse. The attacks became more frequent and more severe. One night she was so bad that I was up all night with her. Although my son never lived in our current house, his furniture and clothes were in his new room and Giz could smell him. Whenever she had an asthma attack, I would put her in there and she would calm down.

This fall her attacks became worse and worse. She needed more and more prednisone and albuterol. We got to the point where we would rush home after work to check on her. We never stopped off anywhere on the way home. If we were going to go out to dinner, we went home to check on Gizmaroon first. We didn't stay out late and a couple of times changed our plans because she was having trouble breathing.

My son and his wife came down to Texas for a visit on Halloween. Gizzie was so happy to see him. I'm glad he came down and saw her because on November 5th she woke me up early coughing. I did everything I could for her, but she didn't recover this time. Our beloved little Gizmo crossed over the rainbow bridge at 5:45 am.

I still can't believe she's gone. She had always recovered before, but not this time. I'm heartbroken. I missed her terribly. I stillwant to rush home to check on her, when I wake up in the middle of the night I get out of bed and go look for her to check her breathing. Some nights I've woken up thinking I could hear her coughing.

Although she was my son's cat, because I had to take care of her, I grew to love her so much. I miss her so much. I have just now gotten to the point where I could write this dedication to Gizzie.

My beloved little Gizmo, I miss you so much, but I know you are over the Rainbow Bridge and can now do all of the things you could in your life because of your asthma. Have fun my little friend and know that I will always have a place in my heart for you.

Someday soon, I will do a picture filled dedication of you, my sweet little friend. One that is befitting of the love and joy you gave to us all.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

It's Hot!

Our air conditioner has not been working well all summer. We could only cool the house down to about 78 degrees. Then last Thursday, the unspeakable happened... the a/c stopped working all together. Do you have any idea of what it's like in Texas in August with no a/c? I can't write the word to describe it. On thing is for sure if I were in prison this would be considered cruel and unusual punishment! It's at least 88 degrees in the house during the day and at night when the temperature outside gets down into the low 70s, it gets all the way down to 87 degrees in the house... yippee!

I haven't slept in 6 nights. I'm so exhausted and hot and crabby! The a/c repairmen showed up at the house at 9:30 this morning. It's now 1:32pm. He tells me he's "just about there", but it's hot, REALLY hot in here. It's already up to 89 degrees. If he doesn't finish soon, I may become violent. This better work, we better have a/c tonight, or I cannot be held responsible for my actions. It's not my fault, it's temporary insanity, the heat melted my brain! It can't take it anymore!!!

It's 4:45... wait, what's that I feel? Oh my gosh, it's cold air coming out of the vents! I'm so happy. Let me check the thermostat, hold on a sec....... wow it's 87 degrees in here, the temperature has already gone down one degree. Yippee! I'm gonna get some sleep tonight!!!

Thursday, June 11, 2009


We recently lost our beloved dog Aggie. If there was ever a screwball, she was it! I've never met a stranger dog, but she sure was lovable. I miss her so much. She drove me absolutely insane, but I would give anything to have her back.

She came into our lives in a peculiar way. The guy next door to my girlfriend's house (now she's my wife) bought a dog for his 2 little girls for Christmas. Unfortunately the girls wanted nothing to do with her and she was left alone in the backyard, rain or shine, hot or cold. Sometimes he would forget to feed her or give her water. The following Christmas he moved and left the dog in the backyard. After a few days, she chewed through the fence and came into my girlfriend's yard. Nina left a note on the neighbor's door letting him know where his dog was. I was at Nina's house one afternoon with my two children when the neighbor showed up. He said if Nina wanted the dog she could keep it, otherwise he was taking it to the pound. When my kids heard that they started crying and begging me to keep the dog. I didn't really want her, but relented. It was the beginning of a crazy, silly relationship between man and dog.

Aggie didn't have a mean bone in her body and loved everyone. She brought us love, kindness and loyalty.

Aggie, I miss you and wish you were here. Rest in peace my beloved friend. I will always love you!

Saturday, May 23, 2009


When my wife and I began dating, one of the first things I learned about her was that she loved all things Panda. So, I began giving her stuffed pandas, a panda ring, etc. One day I was at the mall and for some reason that is long forgotten, I went into the pet store. There I found a cute little black and white kitten. I called my girlfriend and told her to meet me at the mall and get there as fast as she could. Although she thought I had lost my mind, she did as I asked. I took her to see the kitten (that I had already named Panda Kat). It was love at first sight. So, we left the mall that day with Panda in tow and had a beautiful, loving relationship for 16 glorious years.

Panda was a v
ery shy cat and whenever someone came into my girlfriend's (now my fiance's) house that she didn't know, she would hide. Right before we were to be married, by fiance had to have surgery. It was serious stuff and she would be off her feet for weeks, so we packed up all the pets and along with my fiance, went to my house, so I could care for her and the pets. I worried about Panda because she was so shy and didn't know how she would react to her new surroundings, my pets and my children. As it turned out, I worried for nothing. The move gave her courage, she started staying out when stranger came into the house. She became friendly with my children and tolerated my pets. Yup, that's Panda... she would adjust to new situations and never gives a moment of trouble.

About 3 years ago Panda started getting sick. First it was hypothyrodism, that we treated with medicine. Then she went into kidney failure. The vet said she had only a few months left, but Panda fought the disease. We lost our beloved Panda in April (2 years later) to the kidney disease.... her little body was just too tired to continue to fight the toxins her kidneys wouldn't filter.

I miss Panda as much as my wife does. Although all of our pets are special to us, Panda holds an even higher position in the "special" department, in that she was our first "together" pet.

Panda, I know you are no longer in pain and that gives me comfort. Rest in peace little girl and know that no matter how many years go by, you will always be loved and missed.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Well, it's Spring Break, at last! I wish I could say that I am going to relax, but I'm not. I have a nice long list of things that are in need of repair that I have neglected. My lovely wife has been patient with me, but I had better not push my luck! I had planned on painting the exterior of the house this week, but it's been raining, so that's not going to happen. I have enough other stuff to keep my busy though, so there is not danger of boredom setting in. I think that tomorrow I will fix the doors on one of the bathroom cabinets and the doors on the vegetable bin. That's as far as I have planned my week, whew, am I tired! I can't wait until Spring Break is over, so I can get some rest!!!