The house next door to us, which has been empty for almost a year, has finally sold. And because it was empty for so long the yard was completely overgrown. Until Friday when a crew came in and cut everything back.
So Sunday afternoon the Island King and I were outside and decided to walk over and see what all has been done.
We walked into the back yard and as we came around the corner a cat appeared. Possibly the skinniest cat I've ever seen. She's so thin that you can see all of her ribs and the vertebrae along her back.
She was really friendly and came right up to us, purring and obviously wanting us to pet her.
The Island King was petting her and I turned around to go get her some food when he said "Look at her belly, I think she's nursing kittens."
I stopped, turned around and knelt down to get a better look at her and when I did I saw two little kittens under the edge of the deck.
I reached in and pulled them out and they are some of the cutest little kittens I've ever seen.
In less than a second I decided that we needed to bring Momma and the babies home with us.
I couldn't get Momma to stand still so I could get a picture of her and I didn't want to stress her any so I'll have to get pics of her later.
We gave her lots of food and then put her and the babies in our Florida room.
The Island King has a friend who works for a cat rescue group here in town so we called him for advice.
He said that as skinny as Momma is that she probably won't be able to sustain the babies for much longer and that we should keep them in the Florida room so she won't run off with them - because if she does they probably won't survive.
She really seems to like us and loves to be petted and I thought she was comfortable here. Until late yesterday afternoon when she grabbed one of the kittens, jumped out the window and ran under our other neighbor's deck.
I realize that some people feel that nature should be left to run it's course but I just couldn't stand the idea of something happening to them so I closed the window and when she came back for the other kitten I wouldn't let her have him.
And I wanted her and the one she'd run off with back. Safe and well fed at my house.
I told the Island King that they were under Mr. G's deck so he went out to try and get them back.
Momma came right to us but the baby was up under the deck so he took a few of the boards off the fence and tried to fish the baby out. But the baby was too far under the deck for him to reach.
He went over and asked Mr. G if he'd mind us coming into the yard and trying to get the kitten out from under the deck.
Poor Mr. G.
Imagine a very uptight British man who keeps a perfectly manicured lawn living next door to a family with 3 kids, 2 dogs, and a yard that always needs mowing. Not to mention the bicycles, baseball bats and toys that constantly litter my yard.
We're always civil to each other but we are definitely not his favorite people.
And now we want to plunder around under his deck looking for a kitten. And we know from past conversations that he doesn't like cats.
But he agreed so into his yard we tromped.
The Oldest Island Boy offered to crawl under the deck to get the kitten. He made it about halfway to the kitten and then said "Dad, there's a huge fire ant bed between me and the baby"
Suddenly, I could care less about the kitten and started yelling "Get out of there RIGHT NOW!!!" I was terrified that he'd crawl into the fire ant bed and then wouldn't be able to get out and get them off of him before they ate him up.
He shot out from under that deck like a rocket, looked at me and said "Geez Mom, you scared the mess out of me" LOL
But what to do now? Crawling under there is no longer an option but it's started to thunder and we can tell that a storm is coming. And I really don't want the baby under the deck, in the rain, with the fire ants.
The boards on the deck are screwed into the stringers underneath so the Island King asks Mr. G if he can unscrew one of the boards and poor Mr. G just nodded his head, probably wanting us to just finish and get the hell out of his yard.
So he unscrewed one of the boards and while the Oldest held the board up he was able to reach in and pull the kitten out.
Don't ya just love the look on his face? He may not have said it out loud but I know he was thinking "Are you happy now, crazy woman?" LOL
But really, when you look at this face can you blame me?
Now, Momma and her babies are back in the Florida room and seem very content.
I don't know why she wanted to run off but she's just going to have to trust me that living here is better than living out there.
And besides, 3 more cats is just what we need around here LOL