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  • Writer's pictureAndrew Casteel

Laugh, I Hear Angels

Updated: Sep 14, 2020

Was just reminiscing about our trip to Costa Rica this time last year for my birthday. Our son has been pretty good at traveling. He's been a great sport about flying (mostly because that is one of the few occasions he gets unfettered screen time). He's pretty willing to try new foods and activities, though we always keep a few favorite snacks around to keep him from bonking.

We celebrated his 4th birthday this past weekend and it was like he matured a whole year in two days. We had been planning to get a cat for him for his birthday for a while. This isn't the greatest time of year to try to adopt a cat as so many of them are adopted over the holidays. But we were very lucky and found a bonded pair of 2 year olds. Our son named his cat Cheetoh Lightning McQueen in the proud tradition of overly long cat names passed down by his godmother. Cheetoh's a beautiful long hair orange tom, who was pretty brave when we met him at the SPCA, coming out of his cat box to sniff us all and receive some pets.

Lexi named the other cat, a cute grey short hair female with white spots, Buster Pawsey. Buster is a little more shy, but has started purring on my last brief visit to feed them and quickly say hi with a few scritches under the chin.

I'm very proud of our son for following all the tough instructions there are for bonding with new cats. He's moved very slowly and quietly around them, holding his hand out and waiting for them to come to him. It's more patience than he's shown me since he turned 3 last year. They even let us adopt them, despite a note cautioning them against adopting these cats to a family with a small child as he was so good while playing with them at the SPCA. I couldn't be prouder.

It's like he has two maturity settings. One for getting the things that he really wants. And another when he has to do something he doesn't want. Took me 10 minutes to convince him to put on pants last Friday, including an old school rolling on the floor tantrum. And then Sunday at the SPCA, he sat quietly through a half hour of paperwork to adopt his cat without any trouble. I get it. Pants are not exciting. Kitties are. Now I just have to keep from giving in to the temptation to keep offering him more cats.

Between the new cats and his party on Saturday with a bouncy castle and an epic train cake, carrying Toothless and the Light Fury rendered beautifully in fondant by Lexi, I think he had the best birthday yet. It helped me get through watching the Niners throw the superbowl away.

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