I LOVE kittens. They grow up to be cats and I love cats as well. But there is something extra special about kittens. Watching them learn the skills of cathood. Pouncing, jumping, chasing, stalking, racing at full speed around and over furniture and guests . All that energy in a 5 oz package made of fuzzy pipe cleaners, razors and needles.
In the right light I can see my hands and arms are traced with a lattice of fine scars left by the many kittens that have passed through my life. Fragile human skin is no match for the tiny teeth and claws. I can’t resist playing kitten games and pay the price in blood and band-aids. So worth it.
Yet having a kitten in the house severely limits my creative outlets. No basket making as pine needles and long threads are too tempting and require killing. No painting because my landladies will not appreciate multi colored paw prints on the carpet. Beading is a challenge with a small furry body insisting on being in the middle of everything.
My youngest cat, Toad, is almost an adult now. He’s past his kittenhood and I find myself with a faint yearning for kitten energy. But I also have a yearning to get back to those creative activities.
Perhaps I’ll pull out one the many projects I gave up working on when Toad joined the family. See if I can persuade him that these are my toys and I should be left alone to play with them by myself.
It never fails though, the cat that refuses to do his feline duty (sleeping in my lap in the evening) insists that very same lap is irresistible as soon as I pick up my crafts basket.
If I am able to take up the baskets again, it will be both a delight and a little sad. A little sad because it means my baby boy is all grown up. That sadness won’t last too long though because I know there will be times when the temptation of long treads and waving pine needles will be too great even for a grown up cat and I will find myself swearing at the damn cat for messing with my stuff.
I need to remember that, before Toad, I still had to time my crafting for when Slick was otherwise occupied. Mature, dignified and serious at age 15, Slick still taps into his inner kitten when the right temptation presents itself.
In my sign maker days Slick supervised every job and no sign left my shop without his signature on it somewhere. Usually a paw print pressed into almost dry paint. If wet paint wasn’t available he would settle for a black hair trapped under the vinyl or in the glue. The only way I could keep him off the work table was to blow bubbles. Slick hates bubbles and vacates the area immediately. But once I stopped work for the day and shut off the lights, he returned to make his inspections and leave his mark