Category Archives: Encouragement

Thursday Thanks

You know, I’ve been thinking...

It’s been a while since I’ve counted my blessings. What about you?

The Can Opener says that everyone’s having a hard time no matter where she looks. And I overhear all the troubling reports that she hears (even without watching “the news”)- most troubling, especially is the shortage of baby formula- but also the looming ‘food shortages’ and all the other bad stuff.

I’ve also noticed that my human has been making a point of giving thanks and singing praise when she hears these reports. While it won’t change the things going on around us, what it does do, is change her perspective and lifts her above discouragement and and worry- and it keeps her blood pressure and stress under control too.

I’ve decided to start cultivating a thankful heart too. The Can Opener says a thankful heart isn’t automatic. You have to cultivate it. Like you would cultivate a garden. I don’t know exactly what “cultivate” means, but I get a feeling it means you practice being thankful. She says everyone has SOMETHING they can be thankful for.

Like breathing. No matter how bad things look, there are two things you can be thankful for if you’re reading this.

1.) You’re alive. That’s a definite plus. 2.) You’re breathing – (which is another plus)- 3.) you’re reading a blog post by the sweetest Siamese cat in America (whether you realize it or not).

See? Three reasons right there! Now let’s see if I can think of another reason;

There’s rain- POURING. While I hate the rain (it cramps my style)- the human loves it because it means less wildfires and it’s watering her garden and keeping my lovely back yard nice and lush and green.

But I’m most thankful that the Can Opener and Sushi and I have a place to call home so we don’t have to be out in the wet, cold weather. I’m thankful for my kitty treats, and food, and that the Can Opener is stocking up on our food- just in case.

I’m even thankful for Sushi…. (almost)- okay, I’m trying! I guess I am thankful for her, because she keeps the human distracted while I get into the butter.

The Can Opener is always brushing her and I get jealous. But she says she has to.

I’m also thankful for the big, furry pink blankie the grown critters got our Can Opener after the Backup Can Opener went to heaven in January. I melt into it and sleep so comfy- and I’m thankful that our human is doing better and isn’t overcome with grief. She’s getting counseling and is doing research on colon cancer- she has some plans she isn’t talking about just yet. Hopefully they’ll work out for her. Because then she’ll be even happier!

What are you thankful for?


The Pets of War — The Chester Chronicles

Soul Mates According to the National Institute of Health, various studies show that owning a pet, particularly a cat or dog, can have many benefits for people. They include; decreased stress, lower blood pressure, reducing loneliness, increasing feelings of social support and improving one’s mood. There are also other aspects that bond a person with […]

The Pets of War — The Chester Chronicles

Not my typical post- But I have to share!

Our Can Opener saw this post and started to cry. Being the sweet cat I am, I of course, had to investigate and find out what made her cry and then get up from the computer and start praying for a place called “Ukraine.”

It’s a downright disgrace what’s happening in Ukraine- and it’s happening to their animals too.
Please help them if you are able!

Please take a few minutes to read (and follow) The Chester Chronicles- and if you are a person who believes in prayer, please take a few minutes out of your busy day to pray for relief for the people (and children) and animals of Ukraine! Pray for healing of Ukraine and its people- and click the link below (or one of the links on Chester’s page) to help if you are able! So many people and pets (and wild animals) are suffering and need care.

Let them know they are not alone!

Humane Society International (animal rescue/ vet care / supplies/ food /shelter)

Care.org (emergency food aid- your gift tripled!)

Core (thermal blankets, hygiene kits, emergency cash assistance to help refugees resettle

Convoy of Hope (baby food, mattresses, shelter, generators, emergency lighting)

Thank you, Twilight & Sushi (and Can Opener)

Morning Coffee with Twilight

The coffee is a little weak this morning, Mom. In fact, it looks just
like water… How about some expresso?

My Human has had a hard week. Good thing I’m here.


No, Human. I mean MY OWN cup!!

Every time my Can Opener seems like she’s able to move on from the loss of the Backup Can Opener in January, something always seems to happen to stir it all up again. Sushi and I have our paws full comforting her and trying to remind her to sing praise, (it lifts her above grief, sorrow and depression every time- if she just remembers to do it)! She never had to be reminded before. But now every day events bring back waves. We help her get through it.


Image by J F from Pixabay

We’re always hearing her sing praise and give thanks to the Lord for all He’s done for her and for the ways he has sustained and preserved her. Especially since the loss. But lately a couple of things have happened in the neighborhood that has never happened here before in the 15+ years we have lived here. One of those things was an act of violence against a woman down the street (who was attacked by her live-in- whoever). She was only walking to her car – the assailant followed her cursing and slammed her to the ground- she did absolutely nothing but try to get away. He tried to prevent her from getting into her car to leave- but she kept trying and she got in and locked the doors.

Then he went to the passenger side and tried to open it – (the Human and her sister and others saw it on the first warm, sunny day we had, when they were discussing plans for their gardens). They called the police right away- others just looked away.

Meanwhile, the assailant hung onto the car as the woman tried to drive away and he hung on for the longest time until she was able to go fast enough (without hurting him) to pull away and leave. He had thrown glass bottles at her as she was leaving, and other things- the neighbor closest to him who lives alone, watched it and did nothing but wait until the man went back in his house and then he cleaned up all the broken glass in the street and on the lawn.

The police came- but by the time the officer got here, the woman was gone and so was the assailant. That upset everyone in the neighborhood- but our Can Opener especially was grieved – she knows these things happen. But never has she seen it so close to her house. It left her (and her sister and others in the neighborhood) feeling vulnerable and almost as though they themselves had been assaulted.

This has always been a peaceful neighborhood where everyone watched after each other. Seeing this just added to the waves of (normal) grief that our human has been dealing with since January. It also showed her the need to pray for her neighbors. And to pray for the police officers and first responders who literally lay their lives on the line every time they show up for work.

For about 3 days our human couldn’t concentrate enough to help us post. But she has resumed singing praise when anxiety and depression rears its ugly head to threaten her peace, and every time it lifts her above all the chaos in the world and brings comfort, peace, and even joy in the middle of it all.

Jesus Himself is her peace. And He makes her know she’s not really alone- or vulnerable

Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled. Neither let them be afraid.

John 14:27 ESV

Life and Memorial

Image by anncapictures from Pixabay

Still So Surreal

Every relationship we enter knowing that one day for whatever reason, it will end. But that doesn’t make it any easier to get through when it does. And when it ends because of a sudden diagnosis of stage 4 cancer, the memories of all your loved one endured are relentlessly painful. And they hit you at the most inopportune times, and sometimes for no apparent “reason” at all.

Like when you’re going into your closet to pick an outfit for something, and you see something your husband loved to see you wear. Or you want to get a haircut, and automatically try to choose one he would like- or you go grocery shopping, and without realizing it, fill your cart with things he loved that you can’t eat – then you suddenly realize that you no longer need to concern yourself with those preferences.

The emptiness that suddenly hits you is indescribable. And you think to yourself, it’s only been 2 months and two days. How can I handle this for the next few months- or years?

You try to go on with life as it was before, because you have to. But everything has changed. Now there’s no one (except the cats) waiting for you when you get home- and no one to watch a movie with or share a cup of coffee with. Loud or sudden noises become extremely annoying, silence isn’t the comfort it once was, you realize you have to become very purposeful in order to do the things you know you need to do to take care of yourself.

This is where grief counseling helps so much. Seeing the impact that the loss of your husband has had on your family, you realize that you don’t want them to suffer another loss if you can help it. Exercise becomes a priority – (even though it’s the last thing you feel like thinking about)- Avoiding junk food and eating right is even more important because what you eat (especially when grieving) will definitely not only affect your health, but your mood as well.

Being with friends and family become critical – especially if you are blessed with a family like mine, where love and respect are most important. My heart goes out to those suffering the loss of a loved one without that critical support. How do they manage to face each new day?

This is what it’s like. But at some point, you have to make a decision. You can allow yourself to be overcome with sorrow and grieve to death- or you can choose to live with new purpose.

It’s not easy- but by the Holy Spirit you can receive strength for each new day, comfort in your sorrows, and a new life of purpose.

“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.”
‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭61:1-3‬ ‭NIV‬‬
https://bible.com/bible/111/isa.61.1-3.NIV

Peace is possible- even in mourning.


Trust

Twilight’s Therapy Tips

Yesterday was a hard day for the Can Opener. So today I’m giving her some tips to help!

Twilight’s Tips to Take Care of Yourself

Some Days are better than others for anyone- but lately my Can Opener has some days that are really difficult. Like yesterday when she got a call from the Funeral Home. Of course, she also had flower deliveries as well- and that really helped. But I think it’s time I share some advice for her and for others that may be going through something as well. I call it “Twilight’s Tips.”

Remember who your true friends are.
Take time to Paws and reflect.

Try something new and fun

Keep a pawsitive attitude.
Don’t skip meals

Don’t take any bull
That should do it.

Still not home

I’ve been digging around looking everywhere- but he’s still not home.

January 1st Chemo

The days have seemed to all blend into one very long day. At the other hospital where the cancer was found and diagnosed, visitors were allowed, so our Can Opener was gone for hours every day staying at the hospital with the Back-up Can Opener.

But a new blood clot (and the same old misery with pain and struggling to breathe), sent him back to ER the day after Christmas. This hospital doesn’t allow visitors – So from the time he was admitted the day after Christmas until the 1st- our Can Opener wasn’t allowed to visit him.

Bleeding and two more transfusions later, the blood clot couldn’t be taken care of yet. Blood thinners aren’t a good idea when bleeding continues elsewhere. And surgery in this case, wasn’t an option.

After several failed attempts to stop the bleeding, they decided to attack it by attacking the tumor- with Chemo. It started Jan.1. Finally, after calling repeatedly every day, to get permission to visit when he said he was nervous about the chemo, they finally allowed our human to go see him. Today it is finally done. (First dose).

When is he coming home, human?

The Can Opener hasn’t been getting much sleep- so Sushi and I have been working overtime (without pay), to keep her distracted. Sushi does it by proving herself to be a true feline, leaving her presents in the floor (hairballs). I do my part by attacking her feet the second she kicks her shoes off, walking on the laptop, and hopping up on back of her chair at the desk.

She keeps herself busy when she can’t be with him at the hospital, and she’s been praying a lot. Along with all their friends and family.

We see her get her workout mat and put it down and Sushi and I immediately warm it up for her by sharpening our claws on it, and I help coach her. But nothing feels normal. She still works out to manage her stress and stay healthy- but we don’t like that he’s not here. Neither does the rest of the family.

The Tiny One’s new Princess shoes

And the little Critter turned 5 yesterday, and her Grandpa wasn’t able to be here for her birthday or see her in her Princess outfit. She knows he’s in the hospital, and she knows what’s wrong. But she’s only 5 so she doesn’t “know.”

You know?



Twilight’s Tuesday Musings

I can actually be nice to Sushi sometimes. (Without pouncing on her afterward).

A little Comfort for you

Our Can Opener feeling better, but the Back-up Can Opener is still not feeling well, so she spent extra time praying last night. I like it when she does that, because she tends to pace back and forth sometimes and I like to hang over her shoulder and purr as she holds me and prays. When she’s done she’s more peaceful and I’m ready for a nap.

She knows things are hard for everyone right now, not just him and her. So this morning is all about comfort.

Did you know that we cats are great for stress relief? Yep. And that’s not just coming from me. Even doctors agree.

Here’s a few random facts for you about the benefits of having a pet – (cats, specifically, because- well, I’M A CAT).



This is the short version- there are many more benefits to having a cat.


We are great companions and reduce loneliness- and petting a cat helps our owners relax and even reduces blood pressure! Studies also have shown we reduce the chances of heart disease, and strokes, help your immune system(s), and our purrs even help heal your bones!

And if that’s not enough, we also have been shown to help autistic children, and to help prevent ashtma (in children) and improve your mood.

I could go on- but you might want to read it for yourself here.

Or, you could just consult your cat. If you don’t have a cat, I think you should get one- immediately if not sooner.

Siamese like me are a great choice- we love to play – and talk.

She’ll also keep the sheets down on your bed. Trust me.
We even greet you with a smile..
A tortoiseshell like Sushi will talk to you- CONSTANTLY. And guard the remote.

And if you’re blessed with TWO cats, you’ll always have live entertainment.

Sushi’s Monday Musings

There’s been so much activity around here, I’m exhausted!

Wake me next week- Or not….

Our human has refused to take dictation for us for several days now. There’s a whole bunch of family birthdays coming up (not to mention Christmas), and she’s been busy doing stuff to prepare for that. She spent hours helping the little critter make crafts for her Mom’s birthday this weekend, and she’s been staying up late at night. She’s teaching the critters lots of fun stuff to make though…

Making a birthday card…
With Autumn leaves!
And felt kitty cats ….and wrapping gifts…

Also, she’s been baking, working out every day, and taking extra time to groom me and Twilight, because she’s so busy with the critters every day, that we don’t get much playtime. So Twilight and I decided it’s okay with us if she skips a day typing for us in order to give us extra love. But we’re not going to let her get by with it for long… because we don’t know how to type.

And tea parties abound…
Found on Pinterest!
I still haven’t seen that rabbit eat any of those treats.

Take time for the things you enjoy and Be kind to yourself.

Maybe they don’t like “healthier” treats.

Make time for your relationship with God, with your family, and your friends. There is already too much division and loneliness.


Found on Pinterest

Sushi’s Sunday Message

I had catnip and a long play session!

Yesterday was a fun-filled day!

It was a very happy day for the Can Opener. The Critters’ Mom is her daughter and she doesn’t get to see her very often, so yesterday morning she had hardly finished a cup of coffee when she was surprised by the little Critters and their parents suddenly appearing at their door loaded with goodies they had brought to make breakfast for them and spend the day visiting!

Our Can Opener has been dealing with a ton of stress lately – (the Critters’ parents also)- and they have always been close and constantly in touch. But while texts, calls and marco polos are great, they can’t take the place of sitting down face to face with coffee in relaxed conversation, and just enjoying being together and watching the Critters play as they talk about their day to day lives, their workouts, and current events.

Family is important. Family bonds are important- and are critically important for healthy well-balanced children. But it’s also important to take the time to do things that will bring joy and relief to your loved ones. With all the things going on in our nation over the last year and a half, everyone is feeling unsettled- and downright betrayed by our own so-called leaders, who frankly are only good at “leading” our nation over a cliff.

During times like these, realize that when you are feeling discouraged, or alone, many others are too. Even if it isn’t being discussed, everyone is feeling wearied and betrayed by our own leaders. Please take the time to connect with your families and friends. And this is not the time to be battling your families. Don’t let anger, bitterness and unforgiveness settle in your hearts and divide your families. The government is doing a wonderful job of that without your help.

Remember how much they meant to you before Coronavirus was ever heard of- before all this madness started and everyone began to collectively lose their minds. Remember who you were before all this. Remember how important your loved ones were to you then.

Your loved ones could be lost at any moment in all this nonsense because people seem to forget that regardless of the color of our skin, our ethnicity, our religion, or who we voted for- we all have something in common. We are HUMAN BEINGS, and we all deserve respect, honor and consideration. Most of all, we are all Americans. This is the time to stand together as one and not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Remember, there will always be evil and darkness in this world around you- but you don’t have to let it get IN your heart, and take over your thoughts.


Also remember, that when you feel anxious or discouraged, your pets feel it also.