Our little family has certainly changed in the past year - we went from having one pet (our cat who died in March) to having three - two kittens and a puppy. Now, the kittens, whom we always call Juju and Moky (even though their names are Julius and Smoky) are approaching a year, and Finnley the pup is ten months. There has certainly been lots of work (Finnley), lots of laughs (Juju and Moky), and lots of love (Finnley, Juju, Moky).
I could say they've kept me so busy I haven't been able to blog, but I don't think that's it. I blame it on Instagram. I love being able to take snapshots of our day, and write a little blurb and have the memory captured. But I can capture a lot more on the blog, if I'd keep up with it, of course.
Even though Finn is still a puppy, he sure doesn't look it. He weighs 85 pounds now, and is very strong. He loves to go for walks, and he has lots of energy. While he doesn't look at the kids as "alphas" by any stretch, he loves them and enjoys playing with them and following them around. If they are outside playing and he can't go out, he will whine. So sad! He also loves to chew on things, and thankfully for the most part that has been his chew toys. We have lost two shoes, a few little toys, and several cat toys. But he's learning! We have done a lot of training with him, and he has come a long way! He is my first puppy, because I wasn't around when our other dog was a puppy. Lemme tell ya: puppies are a LOT of work, but I can finally see all that work paying off. He is obedient, and listens when we ask him to do something. We are even starting to work on some fun commands, like clean up all his toys! Wait, where's the obedience class for kids to learn that?
In all the training classes we have been to, the trainer says to put him in his crate when we can't watch him, because he will get into trouble. So, he still spends a good bit of time in his crate, especially during the week when we are working on school, getting chores done and there are toys and games everywhere. I'm sure he will get to the point where he can be out more, but we're just not there yet. But by the afternoon when school is done and things are put away, he is out and about among the family. The kids enjoy playing with him outside, and when the weather is nice, Ansley will take him for a walk or play fetch with him to give him some exercise. Dogs don't sleep nearly as much as cats do, so he is pretty much wanting entertainment non-stop when he is out. Thankfully, he's also very good natured, as the kids are constantly pulling, tackling, playing, running, or jumping on him.
He can still get a little frisky for the kitties, but at this point for the most part, they interact with him very well and have adjusted to each other wonderfully. Juju is particularly tolerant, and rubs against Finn and loves on him quite a bit. If he gets a little too rough for them, the boys let him know and he backs off. Finn likes to go up to them and nose them, like he's doing in this picture.
Bathing Finn is sometimes a family affair. This was after a hike, and he was getting kinda stinky, so everyone helped get him clean. And by everyone, I mean John, Ansley and Christian. He loves to go on hikes with us, and we will usually let him off his leash and he will stay with us. Every once in awhile, he will get ahead, and the kids think it's hysterical to hide from him!
I do love Finnley, and I am learning to appreciate his dog-ness, but my heart belongs to these boys. I am just a cat lover, and I think at this point in my life, there's just no changing that. And I'm okay with that. They are just the sweetest, most easy going, loviest boys ever. Ansley loves how good natured they are. These boys are such family cats. They literally love every single person in our family, including the dog and the three year old. And they are so loving!
See? What kind of cat lays next to a crazy, unpredictable three year old? This one does. Juju is definitely more playful, and he likes to follow me around throughout the day. He's very curious and into what we are doing. If we are in the schoolroom, so is he. If we go to the playroom, he's not far behind. Moky is playful, of course, but he has a more loving nature. He sleeps with Ansley every night, on top of her, and he loves John like he's covered in catnip. Except he's not.
Moky loves to be where we are, usually on top of what we are doing. He is so soft, and super, super loving.
I really love having two cats. They love each other, entertain each other, and keep each other company. And I really think they don't get into as much mischief because they are too busy playing with each other! I really love the way Juju's paws are wrapped around Moky's feet. Brotherly love!
It has been a big change for us this past year, but I just can't imagine life without animals. They fill our hearts with joy, love and laughter, and make our family complete!