LORI WEBER MENKE: Supermom vs. super adorable little kittenFor years, our children have been begging us for a cat, and for years we have come up with excuses and/or bribes to avoid getting one. My husband, Jayson, has been the biggest holdout — Supermom’s scapegoat.
By: Lori Weber Menke, Grand Forks Herald
For years, our children have been begging us for a cat, and for years we have come up with excuses and/or bribes to avoid getting one.
My husband, Jayson, has been the biggest holdout — Supermom’s scapegoat. I did not have to be the bad guy because he was. And over the years, he has come up with lots of reasons why getting a cat wouldn’t be a good idea.
• He claimed to be allergic.
• He claimed our seasonal camping spot doesn’t allow them (which is true).
• He claimed no one would look after it.
• He even bribed the children with a toy to never ask for a cat again.
But one fateful morning, Jayson’s excuses ended.
It was your average chaotic school morning, and the boys and Jayson were eating breakfast as I was getting snack and lunch ready for school.
Then, my husband quite, calmly says, “Oh, shi*t.”
That’s it. Nothing else. And he continues to sit at the table. I admit I was surprised he swore in front of the kids. I thought he must’ve spilled his breakfast on his shirt, and I really paid no attention to the matter.
Until, around the kitchen island a fat mouse came running toward me!
Now, I’m usually not that afraid of mice. But it was early morning, we were still in the process of getting back into a school routine, and most importantly, I had not had my coffee yet.
When that fat little mouse came running toward my feet, I screamed like a little girl. Not a shriek, but a full-fledged scream. The kind that brings people running.
The mouse dove under the stove, and I yelled for Jayson to pull the stove out. I grabbed my rubber gloves and a garbage bag, there was no way that mouse was staying under there. But by the time we got the stove out — it had squeezed its way through a hole that leads to our utility room in the basement.
Epic Supermom fail.
What happened next altered the course of our family forever.
My husband muttered, “Maybe, we should get a cat.”
Now, if you have children, you know this is what they heard “We ARE getting a cat!”
That was all they talked about the whole way to school. “Mom can we get a cat?” “Dad said we can get a cat?” “When can we get the cat?”
I did have to chuckle when my oldest son, Riley, told his friends in carpool he wasn’t sure what surprised him most about that morning.
1) His dad swearing.
2) His mom screaming like a little girl or
3) Dad finally caving about the cat.
The next few days, I did my best to capture that mouse — $40 spent on poison and traps proved to be a waste of money. With the thought of that fat little mouse running around my house I finally relented and said we could go “LOOK” at cats.
Again, my children heard, “We ARE getting a cat.”
We did make a couple of different visits to look at cats and observe their personalities, but on Labor Day, we met our cat. He was adorable. He was a little tabby striped cat that looks like he’s been dipped in white. He let the boys pick him up without scratching, and he didn’t seem to mind when they cradled him like a baby. He purred and purred, and I knew I was a goner. We couldn’t not take him home.
The boys were ecstatic!
A quick warning for you non-pet families: You can spend an entire paycheck on things little boys think a kitten needs. But from what we have witnessed in our house over the past month, the only thing this kitten really needs is food, litter and two kids who are willing to play with him.
Why would I spend $5 on a cat toy when he seems perfectly happy to play with the UND pom pom shaker thing that we got for free at a hockey game. (I’ve been finding pieces of that all over the house.) Accidentally, drop an ice cube on the floor, and he will entertain himself until it’s practically melted. When he finds a cottonball, chances are, you will be cleaning up bits of it from one end of the house to the other.
The boys decided to name him PURRcy because he purrs so loud and so often — sign of a happy cat, I guess. I can’t say for certain he knows his name yet, but I’m sure he knows what “treat” means.
To address my husband’s (or my own) initial concerns regarding getting a cat: No one seems to be allergic to PURRcy. We’ve left him twice to go to the lake, and he managed just fine on his own. We did have a friend stop and play with him for a bit the first weekend we were away, this was mainly to calm my youngest son’s nerves (and mine).
The boys are great at playing with PURRcy. The first week we had him, I don’t think an iPad or computer was touched. And they are pretty good about watching him and making sure he doesn’t go on tables or counters.
The one thing that doesn’t surprise me is that they need a little prompting to help with the litter box. If I clean it, they will gladly run the garbage outside for me. But usually, the scooping chore is reserved for Supermom.
In hindsight, I wish Supermom could take all the credit for PURRcy becoming our newest family member, but in reality all the credit goes to that fat little mouse …. The fat little mouse who incidentally showed up dead on my laundry room rug two days after PURRcy moved in.
Sorry, little mouse, but this Supermom will take a cat over you any day.
Until next time,
Weber is a super-mother of two and Multimedia Manager for the Herald. She can be reached at email@example.com or (701) 780-1113.