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Tap tap tap… is this thing on?

After ongoing nagging spasms of guilt over NOT writing, characterized by agonies over what on earth I should DO (beyond “just write!”) to get back in the groove of creativity, and culminating in an inspiration-seeking Facebook post reaching out to my fellow writers for solutions and input, I am tentatively dipping a toe back into the long-neglected ocean of blogging.

I’m still not sure exactly how I’m going to do it, or what I’m going to say, but I’m here!

As a start, a Note To Self: This doesn’t have to be great literature – it just has to be. Alphabet Salad is just a little ol’ nicheless, non-money-making, personal blog, after all… no pressure, no expectations, and no agenda, other than whatever I choose to heap upon myself.

And as of today, I choose to quit the heaping.

Because I miss writing. I miss connecting with others in the blogosphere. I miss being creative. I miss my blog!

So, by way of getting my feet wet again, let me catch you up on one of the major changes in my life since you last saw me around these parts.

Drumroll, please…

Peter and I have had an addition to our family… in the form of three wonderful cats. Yes, I did say three! After saying goodbye to our beautiful Spidercat last October, the place just wasn’t the same… partly because Spider was such an important part of our little household, but also because Peter and I both feel that for us, a house just isn’t a home without at least one furry creature in residence. Well, forget one… when we decide to do a thing, we really do it!

How did it happen? Well, one morning back in February a good friend messaged me with the information that a mama cat and her two three-month-old kittens were in what had developed into a rather sad situation and needed to be re-homed ASAP. Though the timing wasn’t totally perfect for us – we’d planned to wait until Peter was fully up and around after his second surgery – we discussed the situation and decided to jump in with both feet. We’re so very glad we did – we haven’t once regretted our decision and haven’t looked back for a moment… except perhaps to wonder how it’s possible that the three little monsters ever weren’t part of our life!

My Instagram account is chock-full of their photos if you’d like to check them out (I’m sure my Instagram friends are wondering if I’m ever going to stop posting kitty pics already!), but by way of introduction, here are a few of my favourites.

Meet mama cat, who came with the name Grizabella (from “Cats”) – we modified the spelling to Grisabella and added Rossellini for good measure! We rarely use her full name, of course – most of the time she’s Momma, Mom, Grizz, Grizzly Bear, and sometimes Bella.

Happy St. Patrick's Day from Grisabella Rossellini!

Grisabella Rossellini

Grisabella was a pregnant stray who was taken in, cleaned up, and brought back to health by her previous person sometime last fall/winter, and gave birth to four kittens (three born alive, two of which survived) at the end of November, 2012. We’re not sure how old she is – we took her to the vet shortly after they all moved in with us, and she received a clean bill of health, but he wasn’t able to give us any indication of age other than a range of perhaps three to five years (based on the tartar buildup on her teeth, believe it or not!). She seems pretty young to us, though – very playful and energetic. She’s not a cuddler, but very affectionate – she loves head and ear scritches and regularly flops down on her back at your feet in search of pats and love. We love our Grizzly Bear!

Felix & Oscar, peering over the cliff. #catsofinstagram

Felix and Oscar

The two boys came with names which we abandoned in favour of choosing our own. I suggested Oscar for the smaller kitten, as I felt that with his sleek tuxedo, he was all dressed up and ready for the Academy Awards Ceremony the next day (I was going to an Oscar party, so it was on my mind!)… and Peter immediately said that of course the other one had to be Felix, as the other half of our own little odd couple!

Oscar, helping me work. #catsofinstagram


Oscar is an absolute doll – my own little lap cat. He’s cuddly, and affectionate, and playful, and has a purr you can hear across the room!

Felix. This little one has a terrific motor on him!


Felix is a tiny bit more standoffish than Oscar – not a lap cat, but still a little darling – and so very fluffy! I have a feeling he’s going to grow up to be a big, beautiful cat.

So now we are a family of five.

Of course, no one could ever replace my Spider, or Peter’s Zeke – nor would we ever try to make that happen. But these dear little creatures are making their own place in our home and hearts – and our lives are the better for it.

Laurel Storey, CZT – Certified Zentangle Teacher. Writer, reader, tangler, iPhoneographer, cat herder, learner of French and Italian, crocheter, needle felter, on-and-off politics junkie, 80s music trivia freak, ongoing work in progress.

{ 22 comments… add one }
  • Lorinda J. Taylor
    April 29, 2013

    Well, now, cats are always a great subject to write about! Obviously, Daddy was a tuxedo cat since there weren’t any little calicos (unless some of the lost siblings were such). They all look like great cats!
    Re subjects to write about – I always loved your photo days. You should go back to that. Also, you could feature some of your favorite Windsor restaurants.
    Lorinda J. Taylor recently posted… The Man Who Found Birds among the Stars, Ch. 8 (Pt. 2)My Profile

    • Laurel Regan
      April 29, 2013

      They are wonderful cats, and I’m so glad we added them to our family!

      Thank you for the suggestions – I am really looking forward to getting back into blogging. I’m also going to start the Photo A Day Challenge in May, so that will be another form of creativity!

      Glad you stopped by! 🙂
      Laurel Regan recently posted… Photo A Day Challenge – February 2013, Week 2My Profile

  • Margi
    April 29, 2013

    I’ve been loving your kitty pictures on Instagram – keep sharing!

    Welcome back – you should do what you want to do with your blog. I’m still wavering on what I want to do with mine.
    Margi recently posted… I’m okay. Are you okay?My Profile

  • ElaineLK April 29, 2013

    Welcome back, Dawn! I’ve missed your blog! I always enjoy whatever you have to say and the lovely photos you share with us. Your babies are beautiful–love the coloring on Grizzy, and what great names! Hope to see more from you soon.

  • Kathy April 29, 2013

    Welcome back!! So glad to see you blogging again and what a beautiful addition to your family. They are gorgeous!! I will be looking forward to more of your posts and beautiful pictures!! See how easy it was to jump in and get your feet wet? ♥Kathy
    Kathy recently posted… Y is for Yarn!My Profile

  • Barbara Storey
    April 29, 2013

    Welcome back! And I am going through the same thing right now, myself – haven’t blogged in a while, trying to get back into it without the heaping of expectations on myself. It’s surprisingly difficult, isn’t it?

    And I LOVE Grisabella Rossellini and her wee boys, Felix and Oscar! They are gorgeous, all three of them, and I can’t blame you for posting many photos!! What a blessing they are to you, I’m sure. 🙂
    Barbara Storey recently posted… Random Awesomeness: Happy ThoughtsMy Profile

  • Winnie April 29, 2013

    Nice seeing you back!! Your new family additions are precious! Felix and Oscar made me smile as my hubby and I walked into our wedding reception to the Odd Couple theme! Enjoy them! Hope you get back to enjoying your blog again. Your writing is great and I always enjoyed your stories, or picture posts.
    Winnie recently posted… “Two” Our Sweet VictoriaMy Profile

  • Right from the title on, you ooze creativity and the gift of writing. It is who you are. So click off your brain, let the words buble up because anything from a picture to a comment will always trigger a great post
    melanie jean juneau (motherofnine9) recently posted… The Terrible Two’s, Teenage StyleMy Profile

  • Corinne Rodrigues
    April 30, 2013

    Welcome back, Dawn. I’m really not a cat person – but recently I actually managed to find a cat cute. For me it’s dogs and if I had my way we’d have more than one too! Pets have such a way of getting to us in their own unique way.
    Corinne Rodrigues recently posted… Pause, Rewind Or ForwardMy Profile

  • Debbie
    May 2, 2013

    Such adorable kitties and I love the name of Mama cat. 🙂 Welcome back to the Blogosphere.
    Debbie recently posted… REGRETS – I’VE HAD A FEWMy Profile

  • Becky May 11, 2013

    So nice to read how Grizz, Oscar, and Felix joined the family!

  • SHILPA GUPTE February 24, 2015

    Hi Laurel,
    I am here for the very first time and I must say, I enjoyed reading about Oscar and Felix and their momma! I am a complete dog person, but, I found your kitties adorable! WIsh I could reach out and cuddle them! 🙂
    SHILPA GUPTE recently posted… Trust.My Profile


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