It’s easy to get lost in the doom and gloom, from reading news, personal worries, the Summer sun slowly leaving us … that’s why I thought it’d be great to combat this by focusing, together, on the little and unexpected sources of joy we come across.
Something unexpected like your nephew or grandchild’s giggle, an out of the blue phone call from an old friend, a smile from a stranger, or a happy guest leaving you a compliments-filled review; these things can lift our mood and make us happy. Happiness is a beautiful feeling we are all in search of but it may be closer to us than we sometimes see.
What made you happy today? Let’s share our little moments of joy, and inspire each other to see the positives in our days!
Hey as your talking cooking go to's, I have this divine recipe for a 'baked' Thai Red chicken curry.
Nobody expects a curry to come out of an oven but, the chicken 'french' drumsticks (lovely legs) have a crispy baked skin texture and it tastes spectacular served with Cumin Jasmine rice, Raita and Nan bread.
If you would like the recipe I will post it.
It might have been me. I became obsessed with making the 'perfect' carbonara after stuffing my face with it in Rome. I haven't perfected it yet, because it's not always easy to find the exact ingredients (pecorino instead of parmesan, guanciale instead of pancetta etc.), but it still tastes so good!
@Gillian166 a écrit :
Someone else was talking about carbonara recently and I ended up making it for dinner that night. @Emilie you might have given me the next challenge!
@Gillian166 If you do give it a go, I'd LOVE to hear how it goes! 😃
@Jenny @Huma0 @Kitty-and-Creek0 @Laurelle3 I was planning to write and tell you about my sweet boys, Bentley & Eddie - little dogs and how they do their magic on me each and every day. BUT instead I want to tell you that what made me really happy today was each of YOU and This Post. While visiting my next door neighbor in the nursing home....she had a really bad stroke 1 yr. ago today when I sensed something was wrong and I got my key for her home and found her. She is recovering, slowly in a nursing home. She has great love from animals esp. my dogs and all cats. I visit her 2 times each week and try to share, photos, videos, stories about my dogs, or cats. She had to lose her final beloved Cat "Zoe" due to that stroke. I bring my dogs occasionally to visit her and I see a person transformed as my Bentley jumps right up on her lap and she squeals like a child.
Today I read and showed your pics in this post of course, I did read it very animated and she was as delighted as can be. She got such joy in your photos to go along with the stories of your joy bringers. I told her what I knew of each of you, she was in the Newspaper business for 35 yrs - Huma/ and so she loved you being a magazine Editor and how wonderfully you write. I even showed the video part of your post which she so enjoyed. This woman wears a t shirt reading "I LIKE 2 People And All The Dogs" - it is true. She also has the shirt "Animals I love, People I tolerate" that is very accurate. She adores my boys, me she deals with. LOL
So thanks to you for being special joy bringers to a woman without family or children or her animals. As others post and add their joy stories I will share with Joanie my next door neighbor for 18 yrs. now. Not only did you bring her joy but you brought me joy as well. Some things you do have great impact and you don't even know about it! Thanks Jenny for beginning this sweet idea and who knows I might just share more about Joanie and the joys the CC brings to her from afar. Many thanks everyone!
Joanie - she loves all the cats/dogs and tolerates all people! LOL
@Jenny Joanie was so thrilled when I showed her Walters pic....she loved him.
@Huma0 Joanie delighted completely in your stories of merlot and all the happenings at your home. I showed her your listings and she was ooh and awwww and thought it was wonderful...she loves older properties and this was so special to her. Thanks again for sharing and pics.
What joy it can bring.
Bless you dear, Clara
@Clara116 So sad that Joanie had to give up Zoe. I didn't have a pet for years and years, but now can't imagine life without them. It sounds like your visits with your dogs really mean a lot to her though and I'm glad she enjoyed this thread!
@Huma0 @Jenny @Quincy So I have to tell the long and wonderful story about Zoe - Joanie's cat that was alone behind the bed after Joanie had the stroke . Zoe is beautiful, but feared all people, even didn't give Joanie much attention - didn't like petting, just ran when anyone came around. I live next door- So I became the cat caretaker of Zoe 2 times each day and feed and watered and tried to talk to, called out, sang to the lonely cat. After time a few weeks she came out into the living room area to see who her faithful caretaker was - I always called for her each day, each time exactly the same. She became curious, so I decided to always wear the same tall rain boots, camo incase she came near. Eventually, she did, I would sit down and talk to her across the room and finally she ventured slowly my way. She would get near my feet and I always did the same thing I let my arms hang down, one day she came near and I lightly touched her back as she rubbed against my boots. It was slow for sure and took a couple months.
There was one other person that loved cats and was a part time friend to Joanie named Laura, she is a cat lover and helped rescue cats - and she had someone to maybe adopt Zoe but first she had to be taken to the vet for a check up ( it had been many many years- she had been horrible at the vet I was told that one and only time) leaving several with blood marks and cuts. So I knew this was going to require training somehow. I thought if you can train a dog, why not a cat. I had a small dog carrier and the top comes off in half. I sat it in the living room, filled it with fluffy bedding and put smelly cat treats in it.....in time, it took a few weeks (she had started eating very little) I knew I had to gain her love. When she ventured near I touched her silky back, and one day she got her head near my hand and when I rubbed her head, OHHHHHHHHHHHHHH she melted, she wanted more, and more. So each day 2 times we had training/love Zoe class, I would pet her head, her body, with long strokes as she began to purrr like crazy....early on I did wear garden gloves because once (before) she did a big swipe and oh there was blood. She didn't mind the gloves, what was a few seconds, turned into 15 mins of fabulous purrring and she began to eat again. I got closer and closer and one day I just picked her up....she did not resist. What JOY, her purrs deep up against my chest. (I forgot to say, I never much liked cats before Zoe). With her in my arms I knew she could in fact be trained....I would pick her up and walk near the little crate - it was an open lush bed with treats. Each time we did our session of petting I would walk to the crate and place her there and stroke her back and full body and praise her big time. When I would arrive and before the door opened she was right nearby to receive her special attention....after repeating the same routine many many days, I added rubbing with one hand and picking up the lid and sliding it over for a few seconds.....petting like crazy and praising her...she didn't mind. I still wore gloves, just in case (haha). When I was able to put the lid on for minutes without rejection....I new it was Vet time for Zoe. Laura came and Zoe went back to old days - so I did my thing and I put her in the crate and took her to the car. She didn't cry or anything....The vets office was ready for a danger cat and couldn't believe they now had the love cat of all times in Zoe. A week later I went to get dear Zoe and bring her to Laura. As I opened the large cage NO gloves this time she came right into my arms with mighty purrs and holding me close to herself... I drove, singing shedding tears of joy about how Zoe was going to Laura and a large office place with several other cats in their own huge room with much light and treats. Now Zoe walks all over the keyboard and seems to do whatever she likes in the office room. Laura adores her and couldn't bear to give her to anyone else.
I will never forget Zoe and this happy journey and my short days as a cat trainer!
Oh - during the journey, I took pics and videos for Joanie to enjoy and she couldn't believe her eyes that her Zoe was a love cat. I gave her each detail of how I was doing it and how Zoe would respond......she was amazed and I know she loved it so much. I made photos that hang in the nursing home of the journey but she doesn't want to talk about Zoe or Laura. She lost much of her ability to speak from the stroke so she can't fully explain. But I know she understands and because of my journey with Zoe I am one of her friends. You see, with Joanie 18 yrs now, I have never been able to take off the gloves until now. With Zoe it was much easier and sweeter.
Wow, I have to applaud your efforts and everything you did to train Zoe, especially as someone who was not particularly fond of cats. She certainly is a beauty though, so I'm not surprised she melted your heart.
It's similar in a way to my cat Merlot, who was a stray who showed up in my back garden. All efforts to find his owner were in vain and the vet assured me that I was wasting my time as this cat was "born a stray, always been a stray".
There was no way you could touch him initially, in fact, you couldn't get closer than a few feet and, even once you could, there were plenty of hisses and a few swipes. I had to borrow a trap from the vet to get him there, which was traumatic.
After a lot of treatment (he was at the vets for 10 days because it turns out he had been hit by a car and would have died that day or the next), he came back home with me. The vet told me not to take him to the shelter because he would never get adopted and would live his life in a cage. I let him back outside but he kept coming back. I tried to fid someone to adopt him, but no one wanted this scraggy feral kitty.
So, I was stuck with him. Much like Zoe, it took baby steps to domesticate Merlot, but I was surprised how quickly he transformed. I think that it helped that I already had two very chilled, socialised and happy cats, so he took his cue from them and imitated them.
Before long, he moved into the house. Then, he let me stroke him and the hissing stopped. It took a lot longer than that before he let me pick him up and I did always wear some heavy duty gloves in the beginning. He still doesn't love being picked up, but there is no scratching, just some purrs, followed by wriggles when he's had enough. More recently, he's become obsessed with getting on my lap when I am working. I never ever thought this kitty would become a lap cat.
However, it's still a nightmare getting him to the vet's. I have tried all the tactics you used with Zoe, but it just doesn't work with Merlot. He has to be sedated and, even then, it takes two people to get him in. One has to wrap him up like a burrito and put him in the carrier, while the other is poised and ready to quickly shut the gate!
He is pretty well behaved at the vet's though. The first time I took him (after trapping him), he went insane and was literally bouncing off the walls, poor thing. Now, he's pretty chilled, but I guess that is probably because he's sedated.
Anyway, he's such a loving, affectionate cat. I never really wanted him in the first place, but he's very much part of the family now and I became very distressed when he went missing for a couple of weeks. Luckily, he did manage to find his way back home.
@Huma0💥 what an awesome story of your life with Merlot. Thanks for sharing....and sounds a little like the journey of Zoe with the gloves and vets and such. How wonderful that Merlot is family and obviously knows it, I'd say. What a fortunate cat to have you and your other 2 as family and home. And the variety of the guests that grace your doors. I noticed how they often comment on the cats by name in your reviews. How lovely the cats allow you to live there. Haha 😂 gotta love them all for sure. Thanks for reading.... And caring ❤️
I've not had many in-depth experiences getting to know a stray, but I've had lots of transient cats who have passed through and visited for a few days, and I've always tried to provide food and a safe place to shelter.
Grigio is a soppy cat, but he's very territorial and will absolutely not tolerate another cat coming in the back garden and will be on guard duty until the trespasser gives up. Pinot is less so, but she did go berserk when another female cat (not a stray) who looked just like her tried to move in!
It was different with Merlot though. I think Pinot and Grigio knew that he was injured and in pain and therefore were not threatened by him. This changed once he came back from the vet and recovered from his injuries. Then they were very wary and quite scared of him. He was a little monster in the beginning. Now they are all settled and probably don't even remember a time without each other.
Still, I don't think they would let other strays come and hang out here. Walter must be quite tolerant, or was this before you got him?
@Huma0 Walter was very territorial for maybe the first year that I had him, but when he realised he was safe, he stopped bothering. It became quite normal to come home from work and find another cat sleeping on the bed in the spare room, or near Walter on the sofa. He was big friends with the cats from upstairs, though they've both sadly gone now, and he had a special friend in a white/tabby who lived nearby but who seemed to get locked out at night.
Well, Walter is most definitely a very sociable cat then! I guess because I have three of them, they already have company and reckon they don't need more friends!
At the moment, I have a resident squirrel that is driving me insane (digging up my pots and all sorts) and a fox that seems to want to move in. He/she was literally right outside the backdoor just a few minutes ago and was very reluctant to leave my tiny back garden. The cats don't seem bothered by either, but they go nuts if another cat comes in the garden.
@Huma0 for certain those pets, both cats and dogs add such richness to our lives. I can't imagine life without them. I know you agree❤️
I definitely agree. They make me laugh every single day and that is not an exaggeration. They also cheer me up when I am feeling down. There is a theory that cat purrs have a frequency that is therapeutic for humans. Not sure if that is true or not, but sometimes it certainly feels that way.