For ages James and I have talked about getting cats. At first we were living in our no pets rented flat, so it was impossible, and then our long hours at work combined with the half finished state of our house meant we just weren't in a position to add a living creature totally dependant on us to the family.
However, now we have a vaguely livable house, James finished his teacher training and has had the whole of the summer holidays off, and I had two weeks of annual leave coming up, so the timing was as good as it was ever going to get, and we took the plunge.
So meet Hershel and Emmy - our beautiful new bundles of fluff. Bonus points if you guess where the names are from! We adopted them from our local shelter - the Celia Hammond Animal Trust. They lived there since they were found abandoned in a Tescos car park at just ten days old, so they are understandably a little nervous of people and of big open spaces. It's now been nearly three weeks since we took them home and one of the most stressful and rewarding three weeks of my life!
At now five months old they are verging on being young cats rather than kittens, so while on the plus side they are more able to look after themselves and don't need so regular feeding as a younger kitten, the down side is their most impressionable weeks are over, so it's taken a lot of effort to slowly bring them around to trusting us.
Hershel is the more curious and excitable of the two. He loves chasing his sister, his tail, a fish toy on a string, and anything else you might accidentally leave out which is chaseable! Emmy is much more shy, and is fond of finding a small space to curl up in. So far favourite spots have been behind the tv and under James desk, which meant a panicked trip to Maplin for cable tidies to try and reduce the potential damage she could do with all the fun wires she managed to find to play with!
I think this has definitely given us a glimpse as to what we might be like as parents - very panicky ones! We have both had points of being beside ourselves with worry - constantly asking google if they are eating enough, drinking enough, worrying they won't like us, and a particularly traumatic trip to the vet with Emmy with a potential eye infection. Do not ask about our many failed attempts chasing her round the house trying to get eye drops into her eye. It definitely set us back in the whole 'trusting humans' thing. But despite all that there is no more gorgeous sound I can think of right now than the purring of a little cat while you stoke or brush them, and I am so glad we gave these two a home.
I always knew it was a big responsibility to get a cat, although I don't think I quite realised how much it would affect me. Currently I have spent an absolute fortune on finding their favourite type of cat food (they turn their noses up at Whiskers, only Felix is good enough apparently!), a scratching post they never use (but the sofa is sooo much better for scratching!) and all the other associated paraphernalia, my house smells of cat, and is covered in fluff and bits of litter, but I definitely wouldn't have it any other way.