(Happy birthday, darling daughter! May you celebrate many, many more.)
But we also celebrated the birthday of another girl in the family--her cat, "Miss Olivia Wilde," who turned one year old. This is what Olivia looked like when LD #1 first saw her:
Her mother, a feral neighborhood cat, gave birth to three female kittens under the back porch at my daughter's house. We trapped and spayed them all. (LD#1 caught them in humane traps using Kentucky Fried Chicken as bait.) Momma was released back to the neighborhood cat colony because feral adult cats can't be tamed. Two of the kittens were given to "kitten handlers" to gentle them down for domestic life. LD#1 kept this third cutie for her own.
For the first two months after we captured her, Olivia lived at our house until our daughter's travel and med-school schedule settled down. The kitten's "safe place" was a large cage, from which she would conduct small explorations of our family room before retreating to her beloved blue-polka-dot blankie (seen in the photo, below):
She grew up quickly. Here she is, checking out our powder room, before the renovation:
After she moved permanently to our daughter's house, she quickly settled in. She sometimes helped LD#1 with her med-school homework:
Olivia got used to wearing a collar and bell. The polka-dot blankie is still very much a part of her life:
And here she is, all grown up and one year old: