Carolyn Holm

One Dog, Two Cats
Grand Ideas
InterSpecies Memos

Destruction

Cher Madame,

This petit cat overhead Madame slander moi.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

Slander? Puffin honey, what are you talking about?

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

The tiny ears they heard this. When Madame was talking to a neighbor.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin

Is your tiny head thinking about the comment I made about how destructive you were as a kitten?

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Oui! When you said M. Le Poufin was the most destructive youngster you’d ever known.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

I should think you’d be proud of the distinction!

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

May I remind Madame that this petit cat is a cat of great dignity, culture and refinement.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

You certainly are more dignified than you were as a kitten. You once brought down a five-foot-tall potted palm. There was dirt scattered everywhere. On the carpet I might add.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

C’est un ACCIDENT. The tree she took a great leap and toppled over.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

And you kept pulling out the water plants from the aquarium. Several times I came home to find dried out aquarium plants all over the kitchen floor. And that poor goldfish cowering in the corner of the tank.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Le goldfish was extremely difficult to catch.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

Well, not for lack of trying. I’ve never seen a cat reach into a tank of water, all the way up to the shoulder. And then jump down soaking wet to track water around the house.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

The tank was deep, Madame, so it required the full reach to catch the fish.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

And catch it you finally did. But that wasn’t all. There were all the shoestrings you chewed through. Monsieur was exasperated with you.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Les shoe strings, they were replaced, n’est pas?

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

But it’s annoying! Then you destroyed my laptop charger cord. That was an expensive chew.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Monsieur and Madame made too much of all this.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

Then there were all the houseplants you frayed with your chewing. There was the paper towel roll that you hugged and kicked with your hind claws until it completely shredded into tiny bits, all over the living room. And the countless times you unrolled toilet paper rolls around the house. But probably the most astonishing thing was your fascination with toilets.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Always, always, Madame brings up les subjects sordid.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

I’ve never known another cat to come running at the sound of the toilet flushing, to jump on the seat and actually reach in to the swirling water.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Le swirling water was exciting, and a cat will always want to chase the things that move!

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

Fortunately we always managed to intervene before you scooped anything out. It’s amazing what we put up with when you were young. But you were always entertaining.

Love, Carolyn

 

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Wily Coyote

Dear Alpha Mommy,

I’ve been looking everywhere!!!!! What did you do with our visitor??????

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

Our visitor? Do you mean when our neighbor stopped by?

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

No, last night’s exciting visitor.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

Last night? What visitor?

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

The exciting coyote!!!!!!!

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

Oh, the coyote. You all need to calm down about that coyote. It wasn’t a visitor. It was just a recording.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

Mia said he was real! Where is he? How can he be so good at hiding????

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

I was thumbing through Facebook and I found a post with some recordings of local wild animal sounds. None of you even looked up when I played the fox sounds. And I have to say those foxes made some hair-raising cries.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

We were asleep.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

You were indeed. And you slept through the bobcat. And the raccoon. And you even slept through the coyote howl. But when we got to the coyote barky sounds, all three of your heads snapped up! It was quite a reaction.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

He was in your phone? We were wondering where he was!!!!! Mia was really worried.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

I could see she was. When I saw how alarmed she was, I stopped it. I don’t want any of you to worry.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

But what did you do with him? We want to know where he is hiding now! I want to see him! His barks sounded so attractive!!!

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

I sent him on his way. But I’ll bring him back for you now and then. Just for some excitement.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

You can do that?

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

With the tap of my thumb.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

That’s magic!

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

I know.

Love, Carolyn

 

 

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WooWoo

 

Dear Mommy,

I can get you and Dad to do anything I want.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

I love your confidence. How do you accomplish this?

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

I do my WooWoo dance. It works every time.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

I have to say, we do love it when you sit up and wave your paws.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

Love it is just the start of it. My WooWoo dance makes you both melt and gush.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

I think we have a little more dignity than that.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

Not much more.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

So what is it you make us do with your WooWoo dance?

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

Feed me.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

But we do that anyway.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

Give me treats.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

I have to admit your dance does work for that.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

You can’t resist the WooWoo dance.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

You make it sound like hypnotism.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

It kind of is.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

What are you doing the dance for now?

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

I’m going to make you let me sit on the dining table.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

Sorry. We love the WooWoo dance, but it doesn’t work every time. Rules are rules. We love it that you sit on the dining chair to join us while we dine, but sitting on the table is out of the question.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

We’ll see.

Love, Mia

 

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Frenchly

Cher Madame,

Mia again she hurls les insults at moi.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

Oh dear. Now what?

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

She says I’ve been insufferably Frenchly.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

I don’t think Frenchly is really a word.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Vraiment, right? Make her stop.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

She has a point.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

I must insist, je suis français.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

Then how did you get to Los Angeles?

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Madame always brings up Los Angeles.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

Because you were found there as a teeny tiny kitten.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Peut-être je suis an immigrant. From France.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

I don’t think so, honey. You were a tiny little guy. Wandering around in a rather rough neighborhood. In the gutter.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Toujours Madame brings up le gutter.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

And diarrhea. You had parasites. You are so lucky you were rescued.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

It is unfortunate that Madame she dwells on les details sordid.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

It is what it is, sweetie. We love you anyway.

Love, Carolyn

 

 

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Time

Dear Poppy,

I’m so impressed with your sense of time!

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

My what????? What am I doing?

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

You are right on time when you remind me to give you your anxiety meds. Every day at 5:00!

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

My what? My meds? I thought I was getting a treat every day at 5:00!

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

Of course it’s a treat. A Prozac pill wrapped in a delicious tidbit.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

Mia gets a treat every day too.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

True. Mia gets a pill for her heart, wrapped in a treat. And then you all get fed. You are also good at knowing when it is time for the afternoon walk.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

I am?

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

Though it might also be that you notice when I put on my jacket and pick up the leash. Dead giveaways. Still, I’m impressed with your sense of time. You also know when it is time to go out one last time before bed.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

Molly taught me all about clocks before she died.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

I should have known. Of course she did. She had all that covered.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

She also told me that when you are away time passes faster if we spend it on your bed.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

Even though you’re not supposed to be there without an invitation?

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

She said the rule is lifted when you are away.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

It figures. Well, I’ll just keep pretending I don’t notice the warm spot on the bed when I get home.

Love, Carolyn

 

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Scramble!

Dear Mommy,

I love it when it’s all quiet and then something in my head screams “SCRAMBLE!!!” and I grab hold of something and wrestle with it!!!!!!!!!!

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

I love to watch you wrestle!

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

And race down the hall!!!!!

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

Also entertaining to watch.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

And chase Puffin!!!!!

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

I love your enthusiasm.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

And run past Poppy so she’ll chase me!!!!

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

You are quite excited today.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

And whack Puffin!!!!!!!!!!

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

Okay sweetie, all these exclamation points are becoming exhausting.

Love, Carolyn

 

If you want to get this weekly blog delivered every Friday to your In Box, it’s easy to subscribe: scroll up to the top of the blog page, enter your email address in the subscription box on the right, and click the subscribe button. If you are reading this in an email, go to blog.carolynholm.comto find the subscription box. (And if you’ve already subscribed, multiple paws are raised to salute you!)

 

Game On

Dear Alpha Mommy,

Mia keeps playing with my ball!

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

It’s not just your ball, it’s for all three of you. Though Puffin isn’t much of a ball player.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

But when I try to play with her she runs away.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

She wants you to chase her.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

I love chasing her around the house! But sometimes she whacks me on the nose.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

That’s probably when she doesn’t want to play chase.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

I don’t know how to tell the difference!!!! Cats are so difficult. Dogs are much easier.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

I agree. Dogs are generally more transparent.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

And we’re more important.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

I’m not sure about that, sweetie.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

We are. I overheard someone on the radio say that this is the Year of the Dog.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

You are right about that. It’s a Chinese calendar thing. Isn’t it nice to get that kind of recognition?

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

We deserve it. Even our poop is important.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

I’m not so sure about that.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

You do think it’s important! You collect it! So do all other dog walkers! You all carefully pick up our poops and carry them around in nice little bags.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

I stand corrected. Your poop is certainly worth saving.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Alpha Mommy,

Thank you. Now I’m going to go drop this ball in front of Mia.

XOXO Poppy

 

 

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Rejection

Cher Madame,

Mon repose was shattered by Madame’s rejection.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

Is this about the hairball? I yelled at you because you deposited it on my nice Armenian rug.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Madame has repeatedly rejected this pauvre petit cat.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

I have not rejected you, sweetie.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

This morning you pushed me away. Avec rudeness.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

Oh. That. You were in my face.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

It was the time for Madame to awaken!

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

No it wasn’t.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Bien sûr, it vraiment was that time. I was starving. It was time for la breakfast.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

It was almost time.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Always an argument. And last night also, Madame rejected me.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

I did? I don’t think so.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Yes, again pushing this pauvre innocent cat away.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

Okay, it was a bit crowded with both of you cats sitting right on top of me.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

But you hurt the feelings.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

I’m sorry. I love you, and your belly hair is wonderfully soft, but I can’t sleep with you practically on my face.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Voila. See? You rejected me.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

Okay. I’m sorry for that.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

And that is not all. The other day you said you were going to put me down.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

And?

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Put. Me. Down.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

Oh. That’s not how I meant it. I was going to lift you off my lap.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Then Madame should say ça.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

Dear Puffin,

I think we’ve had this misunderstanding before. I wish we could stop repeating some of these conversations.

Love, Carolyn

 

Cher Madame,

Ouf. Yet another rejection by Madame.

Regards,

M. Le Poufin

 

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The Elder

Dear Mommy,

Sometimes I wish Puffin would just go away.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

He’s been crabby today. I think it’s because I wouldn’t let him sleep in Poppy’s bed. He purposely lounges there because he knows it upsets her. So I was quite stern with him and chased him out of her bed. He’s unhappy about that.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

That’s when he came straight to bully me. What a jerk.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

Well, he’s our jerk.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

It happens a lot. Whenever he’s crabby he picks on me.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

You seem to get back at him when he does.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

He needs to respect me. I’m an Elder.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

No, you aren’t an Elder. You are just older. Everyone becomes older. Not everyone becomes an Elder.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

I can’t be an Elder?

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

No, only if you are there to help your community.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

But I do! I cause our community to get wild and playful. I instigate full-on racing throughout the house!!!!!!!

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

I notice Poppy has been joining in on that!

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

She does! I run through the room, tap her as I run past, and she jumps up and chases me down the hall. We go up and down the stairs and back again. And when she gets just a little too playful, I leap out of reach.

Love, Mia

 

Dear Mia,

Sounds like the best sort of community.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

So I think I’ve earned the title Elder. Now I’m going to go explain that to Puffin.

Love, Mia

 

 

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The Award

Dear Mommy,

I won an award!

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

That’s so exciting! What is it for?

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

You should know!!!!!! You told me about it!!!!!

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

I did? Are you sure?

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

You did!!!!! But Mia says you say that all the time. To every dog.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

Okay, I think we’ve had this conversation before. Is this about the Best Dog Ever?

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

IT IS!!!!!!!

XOXO POPPY

 

Dear Poppy,

Sweetie, you are the Best. Dog. Ever.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

But Mia says it’s meaningless when you say that. Because you throw that award around to everyone. And Puffin says you call every cat the Best Cat Ever.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

You probably shouldn’t listen to the cats. They like to cause trouble.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

Mia says you called Molly the Best Dog Ever.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

I did call her that. Because she was. But Molly’s gone now, and now you are the Best Dog Ever!

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

Is that better than being the Best Cat Ever?

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

It’s apples and oranges, honey.

Love, Carolyn

 

Dear Mommy,

Now I’m really confused. Am I an apple or an orange? Mia says you are trying to evade the question.

XOXO Poppy

 

Dear Poppy,

You tell Mia to mind her own business.

Love, Carolyn

 

 

If you want to get this weekly blog delivered every Friday to your In Box, it’s easy to subscribe: scroll up to the top of the blog page, enter your email address in the subscription box on the right, and click the subscribe button. If you are reading this in an email, go to blog.carolynholm.comto find the subscription box. (And if you’ve already subscribed, multiple paws are raised to salute you!)