Maintaining a household as large in numbers as ours is all about wise choices, hard choices, and the right things to do. Do we purchase this quality of food because it is the better one or that food there because it is less painful to the budget? Do we pull this kitten from the outside strays for this reason, or do we continue to treat them outside and hope they return in time for the next treatment?
It is not easy making these decisions. But as a team, we do it, together, with prayer. Often it results in sacrifices in other areas, things that we would rather have done with our money or time. But we do the right thing.
(Photo from parents' house about a week after the storm)
Case in point? The “bomb cyclone” that hit much of the continental United States, blew right up our path. No small surprise as we are in Ohio and winters happen here with gusto.
We winterized our curtained porch the best we thought we could. Plastic tubs converted into double, and sometimes triple, insulated and filled with straw. One electric warming hut. Other warming places that were lined and layered with insulation. Walls and flooring covered with mylar insulation then covered with rugs or squishy floor tiles. We did the best we knew how to do. Despite our efforts to make our porch the most secure location, the blowing snow found its way on to our porch.
Our outside strays had arrived before the weather fell upon us, so they were snuggled up when the porch started to be inundated with the snow. When I went out for breakfast that morning, my relief was immense at seeing every one of the “visitors”, as we call them. A few of them asked into the house, which some are permitted, but one by one they wanted back on to the porch, with the exception of Nonny.
(Bow/Beau - black & white, Nonny, behind Nonny is Annikin, blur in back is Mosheh)
I waited up longer than usual that morning – the weather had me on edge. When I finally decided it was time to go back to bed, all had left the porch. No one was there to invite back into the house. I was devastated! I was worried.
(front to back: Breve Lidar and Kona Breeze)
We kept Nonny inside the remainder of the day. Later I went back out to see if anyone had returned. Only the Coffee Kittens, Breve and Kona. Those little 12-week-old kittens were huddled together in the electric hut, but it was still just too brutal cold even in there. With John’s help, we snatched up Breve and Kona and whisked them inside to the safety and warmth of my craft room.
Thirty-six hours later, after missing supper that night and breakfast the next morning, one by one the others showed up – scared and cold. One by one I went out and gathered them in my arms to get them in the house.
The brutal cold was to last a couple days more. John and I had to decide how we are going to manage having five six-month-old, unaltered, boys in the house. Do we keep them mostly contained to a room? Do we give them the basement to wander? If we do that, how will we get them back upstairs or even back outside when the time is right? Do we release them back outside and hope they return for the next meal time?
(left to right: Bow/Beau, Annikin, Mosheh)
We made the hard choices together. We will always do our best to decide what the right thing is for us and for the boys (Nonny, Greensleeves, Mosheh, Beau/Bow, and Annikin).
What are the hard choices for you and your fur-family? How do you decide what the right thing is for you? For your fur-family? - April-Dawn