sherri's sense of tumor blog

Little Orange Cat It occurs to me it has been a long time since I mentioned the little orange cat we adopted in the rigors of deep freeze. You may remember it took shelter beneath our porch when the noisy machines were making piles of snow in the midst of our streets. The poor thing was terror stricken and wouldn’t respond to the most gentle of calls. It didn’t investigate smells of food or water. On the third day, it began to venture out for the quickest of snacks and drinks. At first, it was quick to pounce with all claws and away to hide once more. After that, it began to bite. It is laughable now, but we were patient with the little thing. I was sure, for some reason, it was a girl creature, and we named ‘her’ Sunshine. ‘She’ moved in one day when I was waiting for Ewok, the little dog, to come into the house. I do make an excellent door person. You can ask anyone. We made an appt with the vet for the necessary operation. It was when I took the kitty into the vets ofc, and was joking how we weren’t sure of the sex and that had to be a first for me. The vet swooped down, lifted the kitten up and pronounced it a male. Ok, so it was a less expensive operation but it hurt my pride a little. So the name became Sunny Boy. He did not endear himself to the staff at the vet clinic. Soon after he was left alone there, he escaped and the surgery had to be postponed for at least a day because no one could catch him. I wish they had phoned me. He never resisted the sound of my voice calling ‘kitty kitty kitty’. Even now whenever he is in mischief, when he is laying on his back staring into my eyes, the sound of ‘kitty kitty kitty’ draws him out. He is always welcomed with pets while he is carried away from the scene of his mischief. He is a real character and has the loudest purr this side of the Rockies. I haven’t actually tested that last statement, but believe it nonetheless. What most impresses me with this little cat is how he comes to stretch his front paws up and up and up until he can caress my face and beg to be lifted. When big thunder booms come and he is afraid, he runs to one of us to reach up to be rescued. I had not thought that male cats were so loveable. It is a pleasure to see that I was mistaken in more than his name. So that is my update on Little Boy Cat. We have been spending much time taking photographs – he with great skill, me with a real desire to learn the art. I will be back again soon.


Just starting to get my feet under me. A couple of weeks off, taking pills for pneumonia and a week resting up in B.C. makes a person feel better in spades. There is a lot missing in memory, but I know I had a really good time. I am learning how to take pictures – there is much to learn. It is wonderful to have another way to express creativity and getting close to the wildlife is pure joy to me. Fuji gave me one of his cameras and I should know what it is called. I will study up on that later. We spent three or four days in Canmore. We were on the ground floor at a lovely motel with a small kitchen and I could take Ewok for needed walks when necessary. We saw a whole bunch of baby rabbits out for a stroll on newly green grass. They were lovely and evidently came from tame rabbit stock. Some of the residents were not happy with the excessive numbers of rabbits but for a tourist, it was just plain glorious. Ewok was on leash, so she wasn’t even tempted to play ‘chase’. I don’t think the baby rabbits knew we were there. Obviously green grass has fascinating attributes that escaped my attention. We went for a drive up over a mountain and the road was narrow with snow and ice that gave me chills in more ways than one. yikes! There was no problem and we came back ‘home’ with no problem whatsoever. Fuji was driving – good thing! Fuji spent a lot of time taking pictures which made him very happy. I spent an inordinate amount of time resting which would have made the dr very happy. We took pics together some evenings and met some great critters. One elk stays in my mind. She has a collar and has been around for many years, I heard. She made me laugh so hard. She grazed along, minding her own business, until one of us raised a camera – at which point she raised her graceful head and ‘posed’ for us. Picture taken, she went back to grazing until a camera was raised again when she repeated the performance. I laughed loud and long at her antics. We named her ‘Deva’ because she was such a practiced performer. We stayed later at a lovely private property finding ourselves all alone because they were not yet open for the season. We had an indoor fireplace and I loved it to bits. We enjoyed the kitchen so we could cook as much or as little as we desired. Lovely to stroll the trails, looking down on the lake below and searching for the falls that we could hear in the distance. Great fun. The thought of having such extensive trails with such lovely scenes in the distance is almost more than a person can take in. Loved it. I am afraid we used up a great portion of the wood and kindling. When we go back, I want to do some wood chopping of my own. I miss that a lot. Haven’t seen a decent axe in a long while. I think it was here that we took a day off to just catch up to ourselves. We spent a great day in Jasper staying at yet another gracious motel which provided attractive rooms and which accepted pets. Of course, we didn’t leave Ewok alone in the room. She slept in the truck where she seemed to feel secure. Windows open a tetch, treats at hand, blanket in case she wanted it – and we could steal a half hour for shopping or grabbing a bite in a restaurant called ‘The Dead Dog’. Honestly I think that was the name but we can check with Fuji later. Nice folks there. Never met an un-nice person anywhere in that part of the country. Being sure I am missing a lot, which I intend to talk about later if and when I remember it, eventually we got to Edmonton. The drive had been warm and sunny, though highways were closed all around us. We seemed to meander between the storms and that worked for me. Don’t know as a person could meander through the one roaring outside us right now. Hope we don’t have any more broken trees. I might get more practice chopping wood than I care to consider. Sheesh! There are two big elm branches on the front lawn which I hadn’t had time to attend to. I could live with no more than that. We are grateful there are no leaves yet, which would make the brittle branches more likely to break and fall. We got together with my brother Dave and Paula for dinner, going back to their lovely home to have an after dinner treat later. I remember much laughter and conversation. I enjoyed it to bits. That type of socializing is very rare in my life. I could get used to it. We drove home to get settled the next day with no problems. There seemed to be much less opportunity for photography but perhaps I just wasn’t paying attention. Resting and back to work tomorrow. I am sure it will be a very good day. Talk to you again soon.

I have ‘adopted’ friends who work with fur critters  on many levels. Some are just waiting to find permanent homes, while wild ones wish to remain wild. I love them all and have interacted with many on both levels. Because we live in town, we care for less than we might wish. We used to do more work at a nearby rehab center for injured wild life. As might be expected, most injuries are caused by interaction with people or their toys. The joyous heights were always the days of release, when the now healed friend was returned to their previous home or as close as we could come to it.

I have a friend a few provinces away who works with a group which rescues dogs who have been mistreated. It is a wonderful work they all do, collecting the animals, finding foster or forever homes for them to become the happy canines they have always longed to be. I admire that work immensely. It requires great skill, both on computer with communication abilities and in person with the injured ones and the people who are trying to help the injured. Yay for people who care!

The center which rehabs the wild injured ones is a great place to volunteer. I have had great adventures there, experience which I would never have had if I had not ventured to try some things I couldn’t imagine doing. Thanks for trusting my ability and love for the critters, all. Perhaps this summer I will be well enough to go back for more experience. I would love that a lot. I used to do relay with the wild ones to get them to the hospital on time.

There are many people involved in the care and aid for four leggeds just because they care for them. Perhaps I will write further of these people in future. Some work with relay and rescue, some feed the wild ones and some love from afar. We all seem to have purpose in interacting with (as a friend calls them) the fur kids. We share the land together. From the squirrels who come for their daily share of peanuts to the little birds who come for food when the winds blow, this is a world for all of us. It makes me happy.


Posted on: March 8, 2010

I haven’t mentioned it here but a striped orange wild cat has adopted us. We have a friend who says only a cat who comes to you is the type of cat to have. This small one, named Sunshine, has a way to go yet. She started her relationship with us by cowering under the back porch to escape the loud machine noises the last time the town cleared the streets. I have never seen a cat fly over a chain link in just that way – she simply flew and didn’t touch down.

For the first few days, I wasn’t sure she was still under there. She quivered alone in the freezing cold, not making a sound. On the third day, I think it was, she was tempted out for a bite of food. She was not tamed by a long shot. I used the blood she drew (when I didn’t remove my hands quickly enough) to do my sugar readings. What a little spitfire! She would crouch at the back of the entrance to her den peering up, trying to make sense of the faces she saw. She has one of the most lovely kitty faces I have ever seen.

Look Into My Eyes

It has taken nearly two months for her to trust us. She makes me laugh by the way she studies things to make sure she understands the rules. She made friends with ShaSha through the glass on the back door. Almost friends, anyway. She made friends with Ewok the dog by chasing her around the yard. She came in the house to perch on the door mat but no further until she determined she was going to survive.

Three days ago, while it was still warm and mild outside, she moved in. Lock, Stock and Barrel, here she is. She has become part of our fur kids family and doesn`t make any effort to go back outside. The other strays of the neighbourhood still wander by looking for a handout, but we don`t put food outside anymore. I might put water out there though, after watching how Sunshine drank her fresh water before she ate her food. Everyone needs fresh water seems to be the lesson. Wish our wild girl Sophie who insists on living in the garage and demands to be carried to her bed each night would come live inside. I wonder how many years she has been with us.

This was a good week, especially if I ignore challenges. Let`s hope I can continue to do that.

A S.E. wind usually means a tremendous change in the weather. That is what is happening today and it makes me tingle as I wonder what comes next. If someone had told me in 1995 that change was an exciting thing, I wonder if I would have believed them. Some of my favorite things survived the changes. The best is my husband John.  My critters continue to follow and to join the family. More on them later. Some of them are quite bossy, and none of them are cows.

Many abilities that I was proud of left immediately. In the beginning, I was unable to tell the difference between numbers and letters. John immediately bought me some baby books to help me relearn to read. The confusion continued to verious degrees – still acts up sometimes. In our small town Co-Op store, the manager offered me a position as a demo person, working with various departments. I have been progressing with this for the last six years. Having started at 3 hours per week if I was lucky, I am now working 9 hours a week split up into three separate days. I am grateful for this position, for the opportunity to meet so many people who are in need of a smile and a kind word. Those things I can provide.

Another ability quick to leave was the ability to work in my own home without direction. Housework immediately became next to impossible. One of the humorous parts of this was trying to find someone who would sit and point at what comes next in my imaginary housework. I think most thought me to be making a joke. I wasn’t joking and my ability to catch up with my idea of what a house should look like is only recently beginning to re-emerge. It began as the plan was shown to me in a dream. Once I dreamed it, it became very clear to me. I am not fast, mind you. At least, I have a small direction to point myself in – I was surprised to learn that housework is called that because it IS – work, that is. I am sure I will get better at it.

The writing which came to me so simply since childhood has been very challenging. I make no promises as to spelling or smooth transition in subject matter. If there are any places where I miss my way, a little nudge will help me to regain my footing. I think this is all for tonight. I hope this will continue to steer itself along. I do have much to learn in this program, and I will be happy to understand everything more clearly. Til next time….

Just beginning to write about what is about to be discussed. More about what is happening really soon – we hope.

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