Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Ellsworth and Winchester Spend New Year's Alone

Tomorrow night is New Year's Eve. Guess who your date is?

[panicked] Never mind about that about that ball-dropping stuff. Do you realize The Writer and her Husband are leaving us!!! For two whole nights and three days!

Yes, I know. They decided when they were at the Hope and Glory Inn in May they'd come back New Year's to celebrate the last few days of their 30th anniversary year. I think it's romantic.
I think it stinks! Who's gonna feed me?

They'll leave you plenty of kibble. It's not their fault you wolf down three days' of food before the door is closed behind them.

Look at what The Writer packed! Hazelnut Pirouettes, peppermint truffles, sea salt and onion potato chips, a Hickory Farms sampler box, mixed nuts, salsa, tortilla chips, cupcakes, caramel hot chocolate . . .

. . . and a darling chocolate bar wrapped in a vintage Bingo card, too pretty to eat.

My point is I'll be gnawing dry food and they'll be living high on the hog. Have you heard the weather report? It's gonna be icy, maybe even snow again. We'll probably get another 18 inches of snow and The Writer will have to stay in that fancy inn--


Don't blame me if there's another Donner party incident.

Winchester, I'm a stuffed animal. Unless you like eating 54-year-old cotton, I'm not much worried. Now tell everyone to have a happy New Year.

No! Why should everybody have a happy New Year when mine is starting off so crummy?

Then I'll say it: Happy New Year, everyone.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Ellsworth's Turn

Well, another year and I'm alone under the Christmas tree again. It's Christmas Eve, almost. Winchester is asleep, knocked out by his allergy pill. The Writer is fussing over her first-ever ham and fixing a nice supper. The Writer's husband is at work, but he'll be home soon. The presents are stowed in the vintage suitcases, ready to be opened tonight.

It's so quiet. Without Winchester nattering in my ear, I forget what real quiet is.

I like sitting under the pink lights of The Writer's pink tree. The rosy glow makes me feel peaceful. I guess that's what we all hope for this time of year--peace.

Here's wishing everyone a peaceful holiday. And, to quote The Writer's favorite Christmas song, "I Believe in Father Christmas," May your road be clear.

Have a wonderful holiday. Drive safely on clear roads to your destinations. And think rosy pink thoughts when you go to bed tonight.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Winchester's Christmas List

What're you doing?
Writing my letter to Sandy Claws.

Looks like quite a list.

Yeah, I'm doing my part for the economy so I put on a lot of high-end ticket items.

Self-cleaning Litter Robot, $300? Cedar Duplex Cat House with Porch and Deck, $479?

Gotta love a self-cleaning litter box. And I can entertain on the porch in the spring and barbeque on the deck in the summer.

Ruby Necklace designed by Dorothy Bauer, $80?

Well, red is my color.

Lotus Zen Cat Tree, $294?

To get in touch with my inner self. Ommmmm.

Oak Kitty Gym, $900?

I have to stay in shape, you know.

Winchester, you have thousands of dollars of stuff on this list! Aren't you just a little greedy?

It's only what I deserve.

At least "Sandy Claws" probably won't receive your letter. It's pretty late for mail to arrive at the North Pole.

Sandy Claws doesn't live at the North Pole. He lives in Christmas, Florida, where any self-respecting cat would live. Meowy Christmas!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Deck the Cat, Fa-la-la-la-la-la

Last Sunday The Writer wanted a "Christmas portrait" for her userpic on LinkedIn and her other blog. So she put on that ridiculous elf hat and rammed that too-tight jester collar around my neck and The Writer's Husband took pictures. I thought that would be the end of it.

You should know better by now.

I should! Yesterday when The Writer called me from a nice snoozy nap on her sweatshirt, I should have known she wanted to take my picture again.

But she shook the bag of Picnic Crunch Party Mix . . .

. . . can't resist my kibble of choice. [Sigh] Next thing I knew she jammed that Santa hat on my head. Then she couldn't decide if my right ear or left ear should peek out. She had on the weirdest slippers--with reindeer heads on them!

Those slippers were sent by a close friend. The Writer loves them.

Truth? I like rubbing my jaw against that soft red fur. ANYway, after we got done, The Writer asked me what she should do with this leftover pointsettia garland. I told her she should wrap herself up in it! Hee-hee!

Fortunately for you people don't always understand cat-talk.

Oh, she understood me, all right. "Deck the cat!" If I was bigger, I'd do some decking myself!

Don't be so grumpy. I think you look very festive.

I do, don't I?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Winchester Loses a Friend

You're all by yourself. Want some company?

I guess. Short Stuff is . . . gone. That little black and white cat?

Xenia. Yes, she's gone. She was old and sick and it was her time.

I know. Sort of.

She hated you--for seven years, she resented every breath you drew.

I know.

She'd corner you in the dining room and The Writer would have to separate you two with the vacuum cleaner. Remember?

Short Stuff could run fast.

And you'd tease her by pawing at the other side of the door. Xenia would get such a big tail!

Looked like a Christmas tree! That was fun.

I don't really think Xenia hated you. She was here before you came and she wanted to be top cat.

I know . . . I miss her.

I do too. But she's just a thought away. Any time you remember her, you can be with her again.

I know. I think I want to be alone now.
This post is dedicated to Xenia, December 3, 1993 - December 7, 2009.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Winchester's Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving, Winchester! You've been invited to sit at the Big Table with the grown-ups this year!

About time. I'm tired of that dinky old cardtable we're always stuck at.

Look how pretty it is! The Writer is using her favorite Friendly Village dishes, with the special silverware with inspiration words on the handles, like "Grow," "Dream," "Create"--

Is there a spoon that says "Chow Down?"

--and those are The Writer's husband's mother's goblets from the 1920s and the silver napkin rings belonged to The Writer's husband's grandmother. She decorated with vintage postcards and old photographs. There's a tintype of The Writer's stepfather's father . . .

Who cares about all those dead people? Where's the turkey?

There you go.

That's not the roast turkey I smell! This stuff is cold and slimy.

The big turkey is still in the oven. You're eating deli turkey.

Lunch meat on Thanksgiving Day?

Yeah, but it came from that uber tony grocery store, Wegman's.

Since when do you use words like uber and tony?

The Writer leaves Vanity Fair in the bathroom. Eat your turkey.

Do you mind? Nobody likes to be stared at while they dine.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Writer's Brand-New Website

Look! I'm the star of The Writer's new website!

You are not the star. You happen to be on the Home page, that's all.

Yeah? Well, I don't see any pictures of you on there. And I wrote the Welcome letter. Nyah!

My, aren't we mature? If you must know, The Writer asked me if I wanted to be on the website with her and I declined because I'm so modest.

Oh, puh-leeze. I'm gonna hurl. The truth is The Writer doesn't want her picture on the site, so took a photo of her hiding behind me--

Not hard to do.

--and the Webmaster guy actually colored her red sweater to make my eyes look greener!

The Writer's eyes look greener, too. The Writer designed the website with her Webmaster at Winding Oak.

Yeah, yeah. And look at the picture of me at the typewriter! The Webmaster guy fixed it so you can read the title page of my novel, The Great Catsby.

As I recall, you wrote exactly three words of that novel: Chapter One, The. Another wannabe writer.

You're just jealous. Don't you like my signature? It's so dashing, like me. Much better than that clumsy fake paw-tograph The Writer uses.

Winchester, can we talk about something besides you?

Sure. Enough about me. What do you think about me?

Friday, October 30, 2009

Winchester's 1920s Hallowe'en

It's that time of year again. And this year The Writer is planning an old-fashioned 1920's Hallowe'en. You know Hallowe'en was originally for grown-ups. They threw big parties and dressed up in costumes. Kids didn't get in the picture until the 1940s. Anyway, you're going to wear an authentic 1920s costume! And you'll sit by the door when The Writer hands out candy to the trick or treaters.

Does this mean I'm get to be a gangster? Oh, boy! Call me Al Cat-one. Or Pretty Boy Kitty. Or Clawed from Bonnie and Clawed--

Stuff your Tommy gun back in your violin case. You're not going to be a gangster.

Who else was famous in the 1920s? I know! I'll be Jay Catsby in "The Great Catsby." I already have the spats--all I need are tennis whites.

You're not going to be the Great Catsby. In the 1920s people didn't dress up like people of their time. They dressed up like milkmaids and Cleopatra.

But I'm not a girl.

The Writer's husband has said you're not much of a boy, either. The guys in those days dressed up like . . . clowns.

Clowns? You mean with red noses and great big shoes?

Yes! Like Harlequin and Puccini's Pagliacci--like the costumes from this old pattern book.

Oh, no! I'm not putting on that hideous wig! Get those jingle bells away from me! I'm going over the wall! I will not be a party to The Writer's stupid Hallowe'en party!

Come back! You don't have your red nose on yet!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Ellsworth's Day at KidLitCon 2009

Get up!

Nooo, let me sleep. I got in very late last night. After the conference, there was a cocktail party and then dinner . . . I think I had one too many Pink Elephants.

I know for a fact you were home by six o'clock. You mumbled something about being the very first one to blog about the conference, then fell in bed.

It was a long day, anyway. Going to conferences is hard work!

Aw, I bet you're worn out from giving all those pawtographs.

Some people were glad to see me! Miss Rumphius was there, and Jama from Jama Rattigan's Alphabet Soup and Mary Lee from A Year of Reading and Pam from MotherReader . . .

Did anyone ask about me? Huh, did they? I'm the more famous one in this blog.

But our blog is named after me. Yeah, a few people wanted to know about you. The Writer put up your picture on the table with her books. See? Oh! And I met Cornelius from Jama Rattigan's blog. We hung out together. He just came back from Hawaii and was sort of jet-lagged but we still--

Okay! Okay! Sheesh. It's all about you, isn't it?

Yeah, for once! Tee-hee.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Winchester Messes With The Writer's Computer

Let's see . . . what shall I wear to the Kidlitosphere Conference next Saturday? A lot of the attendees are wondering what to wear. So is The Writer.

What do you care? You've had on the same outfit for 47 years.

They say if you keep something in your closet long enough, it comes back in style.

Those clothes will come back in style when they bring back bustles and spats.

Speaking of spats, are you still mad at The Writer because she's taking me to the conference and not you?

Me? Not a bit? Hmmm. I wonder if I switch the wires on the motherboard what would happen? Look at that! I'm downloading a new system on The Writer's computer.

You're what???

Windows is so over. I'm putting Snow Leopard operating system on her computer.

Snow Leopard is for MACs! The Writer has a PC.

Oops! Heh-heh-heh.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

I don't like this no-picture business.

Neither does The Writer. She has been working on the problem for two weeks. She's cleared her cache, dumped her cookies, and prayed to the blogging god, but nothing has worked. We'll just have to soldier on without photos.

But photographs of me are the whole point of the blog!!! Without pictures of my cuteness, the blog is just a bunch of words.

Think of this as a caveman's blog, before he learned how to draw on the walls. Now . . . The Writer is leaving today for a whole week at Bell House to work on her novel. She delivered her nonfiction book Monday.

Oh, yeah, that book about constipation.

Her book is about the Constitution, not constipation.

Whatever. Hey, I noticed a widget on the blog. Something about KidLitCon '09?

Yes! The Kidlitosphere Conference for this year is Crystal City, only an hour away from The Writer. She's going and--guess what? So am I! I'm making a surprise guest appearance.

You're going and not me? But I'm the one everybody wants to meet! I'm the star!

I behave better than you do.

I don't care! This tears it! I'm going to--to--

What? Run away? You've only done that about a gazillion times.

I'll think of something! I'm not taking this insult lying down!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Winchester Discovers a New Side

Creeeaak . . .

What's that sound?

That, dear Ellsworth, is the sound of this blog being turned on again. It's been a while, like, since June.

What are you doing?

Making a get-well card for Short Stuff. She's a pretty sick cat.

You're making a get-well card for Xenia? That's very nice, but I know you, Wincester. What's in it for you?

Nothing! Can't a cat make a get-well card now and then? Maybe when Short Stuff gets better, we'll be friends.

She has hated every breath you've drawn since you came here six years ago. And you rile her whenever you get a chance.

That's all in the past. Will you hand me the magenta crayon? And you don't know everything about me, Miss Ellie. I have another side.

You don't have any sides--you're completely round! Wait, it's the special cat food The Writer feeds Xenia now, isn't it? She is only fed real minced turkey or chicken--

--and those little tubs of Fancy Feast that cost over a dollar each! They smell so good when The Writer zips off the foil. Puuure white meat in a light savory gravy, yum! The Writer scoops it on a little blue plate and takes it to Short Stuff. And I run after The Writer and rub against her legs but she just ignores me.

And you think if you make a get-well card, Shortst--, I mean, Xenia will share some of her food? How low can you stoop?

You know what the saddest words in the world are?

Cheap kibble?

"Not yours."

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Writer Leaves . . . Again

The Writer has been gone a whole week to teach at Hollins University and she'll be there another five weeks. It's such a long time. I miss her. Don't you?

Miss who? It's wonderful without The Writer. I can to do what I please, like sleep all day without her bugging me.

Don't give me that. You love it when The Writer brushes you--she says it's like currying a horse because you're so big, but you purr and "make biscuits" in the air. And you'll miss nosing into her sitting room every evening for "cookie."

She doesn't always give me a piece of cookie. Sometimes it's cake or a donut or pie. I don't like chocolate very much but I eat it to be polite. Okay, I kind of do miss Evening Cookie and the brushing. But that's all.

And you like to hop in bed first thing in the morning so you can wipe your big nose all over The Writer's face.

Well . . . yeah.

And who else throws Mousie or a balled up piece of paper for you to catch?

Actually, that's a lot of work. I only do it so The Writer gets some exercise. Otherwise, she'd be a big ol' blob.

You do miss her, admit it.

Maybe a little tiny bit.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Winchester Settles Out of Court

Well, here we are in the hallowed halls of the District Court where I'm suing The Writer for throwing me in the clink.

Looks a lot like our hallway. Are you nervous?

I have my power green tie and my glasses that make me look like Catticus Finch and my briefcase. Why should I be nervous?

Power ties are red and not a St. Patrick's Day gag tie. And your briefcase is really a vintage Elizabeth Arden make-up case.

Never mind the details. Where is The Writer? And what's this paper the bailiff handed me?

It's a summons. The Writer is going to change your name if you don't drop your case against her.

Change my name? To what?

The innkeeper at the Hope and Glory Inn where The Writer, her huband, and I vacationed, is Dudley. The Writer thinks Dudley suits you better than Winchester. You act like a Dudley.

This is monstrous! I am not a Dudley!

I think she's right. Dudley does suit you.

I'm leaving this kangaroo court right now! I should have known the wheels of justice wouldn't turn in my favor!

See you later . . . Dudley.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Winchester Prepares His Case Against The Writer

We go to court tomorrow so we need to whip this case into shape.

Tomorrow is Saturday. Nobody has court on Saturday.

Hmm. Maybe I read the summons wrong. Anyway we need to work hard to prosecute The Writer for throwing me in the slammer. I'm representing myself, of course.

A cat who is his own lawyer has a fool for a client.

Very funny. Go look up "equitable subrogation."


Because you're my paralegal. You're assisting me with my case. While you're at it, look up Morris vs. 9-Lives.

That doesn't have anything to do with your lawsuit.

I know. I just want to see how Morris got all that free cat food. Now snap to it.

I'm just another overworked, underpaid, under-appreciated paralegal.

And call me "counselor."

Monday, May 25, 2009

Winchester Sues The Writer

What's that paper you've got?

A summons to appear in court. I'm suing The Writer.

For what?

Mental cruelty. Involuntary lock-up. Catnapping.

Oh, for heaven's sake. You've were boarded three and a half days and that was two weeks ago. Why can't you sulk like other cats and then get over it?

It's a matter of principle. I know my rights. I hope the judge throws the book at The Writer.

"Throws the book." Ha-ha! Very funny!

At the very least I should get a nice chunk of change from this lawsuit. That should pay for the hours of emotional anguish.

You've been watching too many re-runs of Law and Order. And isn't a sheriff's deputy supposed to issue a summons?

They were all busy. I might sue you too since you went with her on that little vacation.

Your case is full of holes, Winchester. The judge will toss it out.

See you in court!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Winchester Wants to Stay in Jail

Well, I'm back. I had a wonderful time at the Hope and Glory Inn.

I'm glad one of us did.

Don't sound so bitter. It wasn't that bad.

It was horrible! The guards threw slop at us and guard dogs barked day and night. I couldn't sleep a wink. I tried to break out, but I got caught.

That's not what I heard. When The Writer came to pick you up from the vet's, you ran back in your kitty condo. She and the technician tried to put you in the carrier, but you clawed your way up the whole stack of condos. I heard you looked like King Kong climbing the Empire State Building. They had to call in a third person to pull you off and stuff you in the carrier.

That's right. I'd rather stay in jail than be pushed in that vile box. Who knows where The Writer would haul me off to next?

She brought you home. You sulked for five minutes, then begged for food, like always.
Might as well give her a chance to get back in my good graces.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Winchester Busts Out of the Joint

Stay close to the floor, cat. Nobody will see us. We're out the door! Good job! Now, over the wall . . . look sharp! Oh, no! There's the spotlight! We're caught! The sirens are deafening! Here come the guards! We'll be sent up the river to the Big House!

[Our last morning at the Hope and Glory Inn. The Writer is lingering in the gardens, taking pictures. She doesn't want to leave. I don't blame her. I'll miss relaxing in this nice big chair. I hardly ever have any furniture to myself--Winchester tends to hog every seat. Oh, well. All good things must come to an end.]

This is it! The ennnnd!!!!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Day 3 in the Clink

Okay, here's what's going down: me and this cat in solitary want to make a break for it. Before the guards have their second cup of coffee, One-eyed Jake will loosen the latches on our cells. Then me and the other cat will lay in wait.

Every day at noon the Kibble Guy makes a delivery. Jake will create a diversion when he comes in the lobby. Me and the other cat will scram out the door and hide in the bushes. Somehow I will make my way home.

Or not. I may go live someplace else and find another best friend!

[Today I took a bike ride. It was so much fun! And then I sat outside in the garden. Isn't this garden sculpture neat? It's made out of moss and natural stuff packed inside a wire frame. I'm really starting to like this place. Maybe I'll just stay here.]

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Day 2 in the Slammer

I'm making claw marks on the wall of my cell. Two long, miserable days. The guard who tosses me mealy kibble told me The Writer (my "owner," he called her, as if) and her husband are off on some fancy trip.

There's a one-eyed cat here named Jake. He's a lifer and is allowed outside. I think you call that a trustee. Anyway, he says he can spring me from this joint. We're making plans--uh-oh. Gotta lie low. The guard is coming back . . .

[Nothing like a king-sized bed with a duvet, featherbed, and mounds of down pillows. I can see the treetops from the little balcony. Birds are flying across the blue sky and singing. It's like being in a tree house. Heaven . . . I may never leave.]

I hope Ellsworth is having a great time, wherever the little traitor is.

[Winchester who?]

Friday, May 15, 2009

Winchester Goes to Jail

I knew something was fishy when they dragged me to the vet last week! The Writer got out that horrible cat carrier again. But I didn't go easy. It took two men and a boy to capture me and get me in that thing. And where did they take me this time?

Jail!!! Lock-up! I am behind bars!

It's so humiliating. A tiny cell with a rag for a bed, a stainless steel bowl of water (I miss my Garfield bowl), and a disgusting, way too small toilet in the same room. No privacy to do my business.

Oh, the humanity! I am not a crook! I'm innocent, I tell you! It's a frame-up!

Ellsworth, where are you? Get me out of here! Bring me a catfood cake with a file in it. Ellsworth? Ellsworth?

[Ah, this is the life. I'm so glad The Writer and her husband took me with them on their 30th anniversary trip.]

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Winchester Smells a Rat

Did you see what happened yesterday? There I was, taking my early afternoon nap, when I was rudely snatched up by The Writer and stuffed in the cat carrier!

Stuffed is right. I thought she'd have to use a battering ram to get you in it.

And then we went to the vet's! The Writer even had the nerve to take my picture there. I got two shots and that blasted thermometer. And the vet said I need to lose another half a pound! What was up with all that?


You know something, don't you? Spill!

Well, the vet's wasn't the only place The Writer went to yesterday. She also visited the new SPCA facility.

Special Treatment for Cat Association?

No, SPCA. Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Somebody finally blew the whistle and turned her in!

Actually, she dropped off a donation of cat food.

Giving away precious food! That is cruel. But wait--what's that got to do with taking me to the vet's? Is she thinking about sending me to that place? Tell me, Ellsworth. I have to know!

My lips are sealed.

You don't even have any lips.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Winchester Goes Into Time-Out

Is my time up yet?

You were just sent in there for waking everybody up at 4:04 this morning. And 4:15 yesterday. And 4:40 the morning before that.

Can I help it my stomach-clock is set a little early?

The Writer doesn't appreciate you digging at the bedroom door at that ridiculous hour. Neither do I!

Being sent to the powder room for Time-Out is cruel and unusual punishment. When I get out of here, I'm calling the STCA.

You mean the "SPCA."

No. Special Treatment for Cats Association. They handle dozens of cases like mine every single day. The Writer will be lucky if she gets to keep me after the STCA gets through with her.

You're lucky she doesn't put you up for adoption!

How much longer so I have to stay in here?

Monday, April 27, 2009

The Writer Goes Off Sugar

Run for your lives! Head for the hills! Every cat and stuffed animal for himself!

What are you talking about?

The Writer gave up sugar, haven't you heard? Life in this house will be utter misery. The crankiness. The moodiness. The yowling. The tantrums.

Sounds like one of your typical days. Yes, The Writer has made the brave decision to give up sugar and refined flour. That means no "cookie" for you when The Writer used to have her evening sweet treat.

She always broke off a little piece for me--I like angel food cake the best.

Funny, I think of you as a devil's cake type. Anyway, she needs our support.

But I can't beg for any of this stuff she's eating now. Sprouted wheat bread. Flax cereal. Crackers covered in birdseed. Did you try one of those? It's like eating a poker chip. All her food is brown.

All your food is brown.

Yeah, but I like human treats. High fructose corn syrup . . . dextrose . . . yum! The good thing is it probably won't last. None of her diets do. And when she falls off the wagon again, I'll be there, waiting for my angel food cake.

You're so loyal. So faithful. I'm all teary-eyed.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The Writer Needs a Wardrobe Makeover

Will you look at this hideous thing? It's a disgrace.

That's The Writer's favorite sweater. She wears it every Easter and to spring school visits. What's wrong with it?

Stacy London and Clinton Kelly would scream if they saw this on their show What Not To Wear. This sweater would be the first thing they'd throw in the trashcan.

What do you know about that TV show? We don't even have cable.

I saw a little when I was at Becky's Book Reviews (yes, Becky Laney actually watches television). This sweater is BRIGHT pink and has strings of blue and pink pearls, appliqued carrots and eggs, appliqued bunnies with fluffy tails, and buttons covered with seed beads. The Writer is not seven, she's fifty--
A gentlemen never reveals a lady's age.

Anyway, Stacy and Clinton would tell her to wear bootcut jeans, jackets nipped in at the waist, pencil skirts, and knife-point spike heels.

Winchester, The Writer sits in her office all day, alone. Why should she dress up? And when she visits schools, she often has to stretch cables for her equipment or sit on the floor with children. A pencil skirt and pointed-toe high heels aren't very practical.

All right. Let The Writer stay dowdy. Don't say I didn't warn her.

Friday, April 10, 2009

The Easter Basket

I see The Writer has fixed an Easter basket for Her Husband, like she does every year. With a bunny a grown man wouldn't want and all her favorite candy.

Well, it's a tradition. The Writer loves Easter. The basket is over 100 years old. It came from a general store that had been closed for over 50 years. And she's had it for many years herself.

She had a little problem with the candy this year, didn't she?

It wasn't her fault. The stores put the candy out right after Valentine's Day. So she began buying creme-filled eggs and other goodies. But the candy kept calling to her and she nipped in the bag every day until it was empty. So she went out and bought more candy.

And ate that.

I'm afraid so. Finally, she bought two of everything. One chocolate egg for her, one for the basket. Then she hit Mary's Cakery and Candy Kitchen. She had to have those creamsicle bunnies.

Should we mention the jellybean meltdown?

Oh, that's so embarrassing. In one week The Writer ate four pounds of jellybeans.

She didn't look so hot. I thought we might have to enter her in a twelve-step program for Jellybeans Anonymous.

The basket is beautiful as always. And in the The Writer's defense, she bought Her Husband several DVDs.

Now she can eat his candy and not feel guilty.

Happy Easter, everybody!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Becoming Real

What's all this stuff?

Just looking at one of The Writer's Easter displays. She loves Easter and puts out vintage postcards and greeting cards and books about bunnies and duckies. And this book.

The Velveteen Rabbit. What's that about?

This is my favorite book of all time. I'm reading it again because of something The Writer said when she came back from her last school visit. She shows slides of you--

Always a crowd-pleaser.

--and me. One of the kids asked if I had eyes. The Writer forgets that to other people, I'm this shabby old thing.

Compared to my youthful good looks and exuberance, it's not hard to see why. Did you have eyes?

Of course I had eyes! Nice gold ones. But they fell out, one at a time. And my red velvet-lined ears and feet got rubbed away. And my plush is worn down to the fabric. But I'm still me. In fact, I'm more than me. I'm Real.

Is that what happens in The Velveteen Rabbit? The rabbit becomes real?

Yes, the rabbit does become a real rabbit, but I'm more like the wise old Skin Horse. He says, "Real isn't how you are made. It's a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real."

How long does this becoming Real take?

A long time. In the book the Skin Horse says, "Once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand. Once you are real, you can't become unreal again. It lasts for always."

So it doesn't bother you when other people think you're old and kind of crummy-looking?

Not the least little bit. It's what inside that counts, right? Right, Winchester?

If I ate this chocolate bunny, should I start with the ears or just bite his whole head off?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Winchester Moves Back Home

You're back!


When did you get home? What happened? Did you like it at Becky's blog?

Becky is really nice. She fed me way better kibble than what I get here. And she made me Head Book Reviewer, but--

But what?

She found out I can't read any words besides "the," "cat," and "food." So I came home.

Did you tell her goodbye properly?

I gave her a great big wet nose-kiss. We're cool. It's all good between me'n Becks.

I could teach you to read. Then you could review books for real if you want--

Could you keep it down? I'm watching "Monarch of the Glen" and this is the good part.

Welcome home.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Winchester Moves to Becky's Book Reviews

Oh, man. I've never seen so many books. All I do is read, read, read. My whiskers are limp, I've read so much. Ellsworth was right. Becky put me to work right away on her blog.


Yes, Miss Becky, I'll get it. Hello-Becky's-Book-Reviews-You-Got-A-Warehouse-Full-Of-Books-We'll-Review-'Em-Overnight. It's for you, Miss Becky. Hyperion wants their entire spring and summer list reviewed tonight.


Yes, Miss Becky. Not a crumb of kibble until I've finished this stack . . . I'm so weak from reading. And Miss Becky reads a lot of hard books, YA, fantasy, classics. Most of these books are no walk in the park--


Oh, thank heavens! I didn't think I could hold it any longer . . . Miss Becky is really very nice, but she takes her work seriously. Everybody wonders how she reads so many books and keeps up with so many blogs. Well, I'll tell you--


Right away, Miss Becky. Just strap me in the harness so I can pull the book cart . . . I wish I'd never left home. Maybe The Writer and Ellsworth appreciated me a teeny bit more than I thought--


Yes, Miss Becky.
This post is dedicated to Becky Laney, a good sport and super book reviewer

Monday, March 30, 2009

Winchester Runs Away . . . Again

What're you doing with all this food?

Leaving, that's what.
Running away again? The last time you ran off was when you thought I was going to Hollins University with The Writer last summer.

The Writer and me had a big fight over at her new blog. So I'm going to find a new blog.

You have a blog. Ours.

You don't appreciate me. My talents, charm, and good looks are wasted here.

So where are you going? It's a cold cruel world out there in Blogland, you know. You have it pretty soft here.

I'm thumbing a ride to Becky's Book Reviews. Ol' Becks will take me in. She thinks I'm cute.

First of all, you don't have any thumbs. Second, don't call Becky Laney "Ol' Becks." She's a professional in the book world and a highly-respected book reviewer. Have you seen how many blogs she has? And all those challenges she runs? Not to mention the fact she reads about five tons of books every day. She'll put you to work.

Becks? Nah. She'll be thrilled to have me around for my gorgeous catness. I bet she feeds me five times a day plus she'll scratch my belly and get me a velvet cat bed. Ta-ta.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Poetry Friday, Dorothy Aldis

We haven't done Poetry Friday in months. Winchester and I decided to do it today, but he's nowhere around. Hmmmm. Well, I'll post myself. Today's selection is from a collection of poetry I found on The Writer's shelves. It's called Everything and Anything by Dorothy Aldis (1925).

"Night and Morning"

The morning sits outside afraid
Until my mother draws the shade;

Then it bursts in like a ball,
Splashing sun all up the wall.

Andn the evening is not night
Until she's tucked me in just right
And kissed me and turned out the light.

Oh, if my mother went away
Who would start the night and day?

(I don't suppose Winchester went away? No--he never gets too far from his food dish.)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Winchester Is Down in the Dumps

Hey, how come you're hiding in the corner of The Writer's office?

I don't know. I feel kind of blah.

What's wrong?

The Writer has this new blog. You know what that means. Nobody will ever hear from us again.

I know about the new blog, Under the Honeysuckle Vine. The Writer told me she's going to keep up both blogs. Maybe only post once a week on ours. After all, you have fans out there.

Maybe The Writer will forget about the new blog the way she did that other one, Books! Books! She has her whims.

No, I really think she's going to keep up Under the Honeysuckle Vine. Remember when I said she was reorganizing her priorities this year? Well, this is part of it. Look on the bright side--you won't have to wear those ridiculous hats so often.

Yeah. I guess.

Now what?

The Writer got a postcard in the mail yesterday. From the vet. It has a picture of a yellow tabby on the front. The yellow tabby looks serious, like Uncle Sam in those old "We Want You!" posters. On the back it says, "Wincheter's vaccinations are due." Rabies and distemper shots! Could my life get any worse?

I think you have a touch of March Madness.


Sunday, March 15, 2009

Winchester Decides to do School Visits

The Writer just got back from visiting Matoaca Elementary school. She did a slide show that had pictures of Yours Truly. The Writer told her husband all the kids asked questions about me. How old I am. How much did I weigh (I hope she fibbed about that). What did I like to do for fun. One kid asked if I did school visits! I think I should!

You hate to ride in the car, remember?

That's because we're always going to the vet. And the vet always uses that thermometer . . . But if we're going to talk to kids, that's different. Easy peasy.

You realize that The Writer got up at 5:30 in the morning and drove two hours through snow and rain to get to that school. You can't sleep in your cushy dog bed if you do school visits.

Shhh. Don't tell anybody this is a dog bed.

You can't take a nap when you do school visits. The Writer talks to all the kids in the whole school, in groups. And then she autographs books--

--and then she had lunch. A nice big turkey sandwich with lots of meat! I don't care what you say. I'm going to start doing school visits. I'll fly in a private jet or ride in a limo. And I'll get one of those automatic pawprint machines for my autograph. And I'll ask for two turkey sandwiches. Maybe roast beef.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Ellsworth and Winchester Get Married

Ellsworth: Oooh, this is so sudden!

Winchester: Wha? What year is it? What's going on? Why am I in this get-up?

We're getting married!

We haven't been on this blog for two months . . . I thought it was shut down. And now you tell me we're getting married?

Okay, we're not really getting married. We're pretending we're The Writer and Her Husband. Valentine's Day is their 30th wedding anniversary. The Writer wanted to be married on Valentine's Day because of a children's book. You can read all about it on the blog Vintage Books My Kid Loves.

Where has The Writer been all this time? She flat-out forgot about this blog. And us.

No, she didn't. She's "reorganizing her priorities."

A fancy way of saying she crams down donuts every morning while she reads diet books. I've counted the Krispy Kreme bags in the trash . . . it's not pretty.

Okay, we have to act out The Writer and Her Husband's wedding day 30 years ago. The minister has just said, "Winchester, do you take Ellsworth as your lawfully wedded wife, to have and to hold, in sickness and health, from this day forward?"


What do you mean "What?" The answer is "I do!" You're backing out, aren't you?

I can't hear . . . the minister's breath reeks of garlic. Did you notice he's a rat?

My mother warned me about the difficulties of a mixed marriage.

You mean between a cat and a stuffed animal?

No, a Virginian and a Yankee!

Whatever. Is it over? Is somebody going to throw the heart-shaped kibble?