Cats and Coffee and Connections—and a Giveaway

photo of coffee with geraniums
Ahhh, morning, coffee, and pretty flowers.

“Thank you for an entertaining hour.”

I didn’t recognize the sender of the e-mail, but somehow had a feeling I knew what it was about.

“I came across your work after googling ‘cat gift bags.’  I immediately went to read all your stories, and want to thank you for an entertaining hour.  I laughed at some, but also had tears in my eyes after reading about Fawn and the balloons over her photo.”

painting of cat under the bed
Waiting for Mom, pastel © B.E. Kazmarski

Ah, someone had discovered The Creative Cat and my art and stories. And not only was she saying “hello”, but she was also offering free coffee!

“I …want to thank you by sending you 2 free bags of my gourmet coffee Caffeine For Cat Fiends. No strings attached, really, it is just that you, and especially Fawn, really touched me. I do not keep a mailing list, I am not a big business, I am not looking to hook you into anything, I am just a regular person who does a lot of trap/neuter/return for homeless cats in my town, and who delighted in your artwork and writing.”

She asked if I did drink coffee and offered several blends and roasts, and added, If you don’t think I am a total wacko please respond with an address that I can mail my lovely coffee to.

Suspicious? Maybe for a few seconds, but she just seemed too sincere, and even without the compliments to my work, and the reference to my “yiddle” Fawn, someone who openly admits on first meeting that they trap/neuter/return for homeless cats and offers coffee is just a nice, honest person. Still, I don’t send out my address without checking…

Her e-mail signature included her name and “Volunteer for It’s Meow or Never For Ferals, Tallahassee, FL.” So, of course, I looked up the organization, read through the website and found a woman referenced in a volunteer event with the same name, then went on to read all about this organization founded and run entirely by volunteers around the city of Tallahassee, FL and enjoyed the stories of their founding, growth and maturity into a full-fledged and very busy TNR program, with the acronym “IMON”.

black cat with coffee
Mr. Sunshine poses with the coffee.

I happily e-mailed back.

It’s the magic of the internet, blogging and social networking—I’m so glad you found me too! It brings me profound joy to share my cats with others, especially the ones who’ve gone to the bridge like Fawn. She was not social, the internet was new, and when she passed I was afraid no one but me would ever know she existed.

After some chit-chat I asked, Were you the Kathy mentioned on the “about” page under testimonials for the Jingle Bell Run and trapping?

And she replied:

Yes, I am the Kathy referred to on the IMON webpage. It is a small organization, so I am a big volunteer for them. The website is very basic because I created it, and I am no web designer for sure. I am even the woman in their Mascot suit. What fun, I just can’t believe more people don’t want to do this kind of thing. Cavorting as the mascot helps to offset the heartache of tnr’ing in some really sad situations.

You really can’t make this up. Kathy was in deep and I’d gladly help her in whatever way I could. She promised to send the coffee and I enjoyed my first cup the day after it came, grinding the beans in my hand-turned grinder and making it in my French press. The Altura was indeed one of the best Central American blends I’ve had, and as I photographed my cup with the bags of coffee, at right, I realized I’d unconsciously chosen, from the two dozen or more mugs I have on hand, the one single mug I have left that shows my “yittle Fawn” in her portrait “Waiting for Mom” that had inspired Kathy to write to me in the first place.


photo of bag of coffee
The Mexican Altura Blend
photo of bag of coffee
The Ethiopian Harrar blend
photo of bag of coffee
The Purrr-fect Blend

And here’s the giveaway!

I have one each of three flavors of this coffee to give away. You can enter for each one, and have your choice of ground or whole bean.

  • Purrr-ffect Perk Up, Mexican Altura: Alluring natural sweetness. Perky as a playful kitty.
  • Purrr-fect Morning, Ethiopan Harrar: Hint of berries with a chocolaty body. Star your day feline fine.
  • Purrr-fect Blend: This mix of African, Central, and S. American Coffees is “The Calico of Coffees!”

You don’t have to do anything fancy to enter, but because I want to help IMON as much as possible I would like you to go to their website, http://www.itsmeowornever.com/Pages/default.aspx, and read about them, then come back here and write a comment telling me:

  • which of the coffees you’d like;
  • specify ground or whole bean;
  • some fact you found on their website, doesn’t matter what it is—how many cats were TNR’d, what was the name of a recent event, etc.—and try not to duplicate one that’s already been entered in other comments.
  • You can win more than one flavor, enter in all of them if you want. Please use a separate comment to enter for each flavor of coffee, and a different fact from the website.

NOTE: if you are a new commenter, or your comment includes a link, your comment will not appear immediately. I have comments set to moderate new commenters and any comment with a link of any sort. Be patient, I check things frequently.

This giveaway will be open between these dates:

  • Opens: July 10, 2012
  • Closes: July 17, 2012 (midnight PST)

I will print out each comment and have each of my wonderfully talented and fair-minded cats dig through the entries to choose the winners, announcing on July 18.

And even if you’re not in the United States, we’ll get it to you somehow!

label for coffee
Close-up view of the label.

But don’t hesitate to purchase some now!

For people who purchase Caffeine for Cat Fiends coffee from the IMON website, the entire purchase price goes to benefit their TNR programs, and as Kathy says on the website, “the more you drink, the more cats get fixed.”

The coffee is $10.00 per 12 oz. bag plus shipping. Payment may be made in advance by PayPal on IMON’s website, or by check to:

It’s Meow or Never For Ferals, Inc.
2103 Pink Flamingo Lane
Tallahassee, FL 32308

 Estimates to ship:
2 bags         $ 20.00
shipping       $   6.00
total             $ 26.00      =  $13.00 per bag

8 bags         $ 80.00
shipping       $ 15.45
total             $ 95.45      = $11.93 per bag

This shipping estimate refers to the continental US.

Anyone with questions about the coffee can reach Kathy directly:

Kathy Mears, Cat Fiend & Sales Rep
katmears@gmail.com
850-766-1370

And here is one good reason why you should purchase now

One of the times I spoke with Kathy recently she told me of a 70-year-old woman who was trying to defend her long-time feral colony from bb-shooters, trappers and the local sheriff. She had decided that a privacy fence would be the best thing to help protect the cats in the woman’s yard, and went about the installation on her own. You can read about the woman on the IMON website at Happenin’s (scroll down), but Kathy gave me an update in a recent e-mail.

Update on Project Cat Safe at Cheryl Williams’ place. Nine of her cats seem to be adjusting to being in their fenced sanctuary, they are definately safer from being shot and trapped. We are placing blocks around the bottom of the fence because of the digger-outer cats. Nobody is escaping from over the top of the fence, thank goodness. I am building 2 concrete block bunkers to give them safer feeling places to hide in the storms. They are only 16 inches high which doesn’t seem like much but they are used to hiding in small places and seem to feel safer. They have inside floors to get them up off the wet ground a couple inches. The cats have a variety of other shelters that have cedar shavings and hay for when it gets cold.  My longer range goals are to build some tree platforms, and also to put in some shrubbery for them mainly because they just like it—they feel safer. We are still working on changing county ordinances to be more friendly to the TNR colony caregivers.

So a coffee purchase would also help this effort to assist a long-time colony caretaker and her cats, as well as advocacy to help change the culture around stray and feral cats.

And while you drink your coffee you can think of all the cats you are spaying and neutering, kind of a strange thought, but however it happens it’s a good thing.

illustration for coffee
The illustration on the label.

The illustration on the label

Emily Kaitz, a musician from Arkansas, created the watercolor artwork just for this coffee, and Kathy said, “I just so love her for it….She didn’t know me from diddly and I emailed her out of the blue, just like I did with you.” I found Emily on the internet, but I think she is touring and I didn’t get a chance to speak with her. I will keep trying though—no doubt she’s a cat lover!

 


All images used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission. Please ask if you are interested in purchasing one as a print, or to use in a print or internet publication.

Bernadette

From health and welfare to rescue and adoption stories, advocacy and art, factual articles and fictional stories, "The Creative Cat" offers both visual and verbal education and entertainment about cats for people who love cats, pets and animals of all species.

38 thoughts on “Cats and Coffee and Connections—and a Giveaway

  • September 20, 2012 at 12:18 am
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    If you are going for finest contents like I do, simply pay a
    quick visit this website all the time as it gives quality contents, thanks

    Reply
  • July 19, 2012 at 2:50 pm
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    I noticed I was picked as a winner! Thank you! Will you be contacting me?
    CarolSue

    Reply
  • Pingback: Your Questions About Foster Care For Cats And Kittens

  • July 17, 2012 at 11:35 pm
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    Trying the Purrr-fect Blend (ground) would be awesome too! Since 2006, IMON has collected and distibuted over 1200+ lbs of pet food. They also distribute cat litter and dog food.

    Reply
    • July 18, 2012 at 10:46 am
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      Nicole, thanks so much for entering! I did catch your entries last night, and I’m putting my cats to work with choosing the winners!

      Reply
  • July 17, 2012 at 11:32 pm
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    I would also like to try the Purrr-fect Perk Up Mexican Altura (ground). IMON was founded in 2006 by Kerry Hyde. What a great program she started!

    Reply
  • July 17, 2012 at 11:29 pm
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    I would pick Purrr-fect Morning (ground)! In 2011 they spayed/neutered 194 cats and helped facilitate 37 adoptions!

    Reply
  • July 16, 2012 at 11:22 pm
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    IMON loaned me a trap to rescue two cats who were dumped near my home. They not feral but were hungry, scared, and not completely tame. I couldn’t have caught them without the trap…they are now a happy part of my family.

    I discovered the “cat coffee” at PAWS a few weeks ago and love it. Now I buy a bag each week, and knowing it goes to help IMON makes me feel good! I like the Columbian, but for this giveaway (if selected) I would try the Perrrfect-Blend

    Reply
    • July 17, 2012 at 8:59 am
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      Tracie, the more I hear about how IMON helps others like you help cats the more I wonder how they do it! Thanks for entering!

      Reply
  • July 14, 2012 at 10:42 pm
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    Fact: Relocating a feral cat or colony of feral cats should be avoided at all costs, and only viewed as a last resort.
    Coffee: The Purrr-fect Blend (ground)
    #3

    Reply
    • July 15, 2012 at 12:39 pm
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      CarolSue, thanks #3 for taking the time to read their website and enter the contest!

      Reply
  • July 14, 2012 at 10:42 pm
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    Fact: One of the things they can use via donations are Costco and Sam’s Club Cards
    Coffee: The Ethopian Harrar Blend (ground)

    Reply
  • July 14, 2012 at 10:40 pm
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    Fact: IMON distributes cat food to caregivers in need of assistance feeding their colonies.
    Coffee: Mexican Altura Blend (ground)
    #1

    Reply
  • July 14, 2012 at 9:00 pm
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    I love IMON. They helped me TNR about 10 cats and kittens. They, especially Kathy and Mary, are very devoted and dedicated. Mary even tamed four of the feral kittens and helped find homes for them. Kathy is tireless and always coming up with creative ideas for fund raising and for the welfare of the cats. They are great.

    Reply
    • July 15, 2012 at 12:37 pm
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      Holly, thanks for stopping by to let us know! The more I hear about them the more impressive they are, especially Kathy and Mary.

      Do you want to enter the contest? Let me know what coffee you’d like!

      Reply
  • July 13, 2012 at 2:31 pm
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    I dig IMON and love the new coffee! We need it over here in Jacksonville! Kudos to all IMON and it’s volunteers do – 17 reloacted in 2011, that’s impressive, and 194 TNR’d!!

    Reply
    • July 13, 2012 at 5:18 pm
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      Lina, thanks for entering, and for supporting IMON!

      Reply
  • July 12, 2012 at 3:45 pm
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    Good coffee for a good cause. I would love some of the “calico” and would very likely buy much more to help kitteh!

    Reply
  • July 12, 2012 at 12:01 pm
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    Kathy has been doing such a great job with Mrs. Williams’ cat enclosure! Did you know it’s about 4,000 square feet? Kathy is out there almost every day after work and on weekends. Kudos to Kathy and IMON!
    I would choose the Purr-fect Blend, ground… Calicos are awesome!

    Reply
    • July 12, 2012 at 12:16 pm
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      Diana, I can’t believe Kathy has been building that enclosure in this heat! She is truly way above and beyond her call of duty! Thanks for entering!

      Reply
    • July 12, 2012 at 12:18 pm
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      P.S. Diana, good luck with Tallahassee Pets Alive!

      Reply
  • July 12, 2012 at 8:15 am
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    I would love to try the Altura blend.

    I had no idea that October 16 is National Feral Cat Day!

    Bravo to both of you on this…

    Reply
    • July 12, 2012 at 9:11 am
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      Susan, thanks so much for visiting and for entering! Kathy is wonderful, and I’m so glad she decided just to e-mail me and get this whole thing started.

      Reply
  • July 12, 2012 at 7:54 am
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    Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful!! You and KATHY. I love the whole story: I love that she emailed you and you wrote this blog and created this contest. Great stuff!

    Reply
  • July 11, 2012 at 7:31 pm
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    Total Revenue : $11,687.25 Program Services Expenses : $9,847.74 81%
    Total Expenses : $12,095.91 Administrative Expenses : $.00 0%
    Surplus/Deficit : -$408.66 Fund-Raising Expenses : $2,248.17 19%

    The amazing thing I learned from the site, 2010 there were $0 administrative expenses….THAT IS AWESOME!

    The coffee that I think I would like is the PURR-fect blend, whole bean.

    THANKS FOR DOING ALL YOU DO………..FROM PITTSBURGH, PA

    Reply
    • July 11, 2012 at 11:07 pm
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      Michelle, you really did your research! Thanks for entering!

      Reply
  • July 11, 2012 at 5:43 pm
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    81% of donations go directly to program services! That is good stewardship of donor funds. Thank you for all you do for the animals! I would pick ground Mexical Altura blend.

    Reply
    • July 11, 2012 at 5:55 pm
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      Joanne, thank you for entering–and that is an impressive figure! The Altura was my favorite as well.

      Reply
  • July 11, 2012 at 4:29 pm
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    How terrific is this site and all the cat people! I hope you get everyone you know to enter the contest.
    For those who want to order by PayPal, the PayPal button is located on the Donations page, http://www.itsmeowornever.com/Pages/Donate.aspx
    but I will try to get it placed directly with the coffee information, too, but it might take a day or two.
    On behalf of our community cats,
    Kathy Mears, Cat Fiend & Sales Rep.
    It’s Meow or Never For Ferals, Inc.

    Reply
    • July 11, 2012 at 4:57 pm
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      Thanks, Kathy, let’s hope we get a great response and lots of interest for IMON!

      Reply
  • July 11, 2012 at 1:52 pm
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    What a wonderful tale! Isn’t the internet amazing sometimes, in its ability to connect fellow cat lovers? We think Kathy’s story – and what she does for the cats in Talahassee is truly wonderful. Thanks ever so for sharing! We’ll enter – and once you have the PayPal button up, will happily support a fellow cat lover.

    (Please tell Mr. Sunshine he’s a handsome model, too!)

    Reply
  • July 11, 2012 at 1:00 pm
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    I don’t have a coffee grinder, so can’t enter, but just wanted to say how much I enjoyed the story and the illustration 🙂

    Reply
    • July 11, 2012 at 1:19 pm
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      Carolyn, you can order it ground! I do need to enter that because it looks as if you can’t. Please enter!

      Reply
  • July 11, 2012 at 10:06 am
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    What a great story – so many people doing so many great things for our precious cats and dogs. I plan to order some coffee so I can support what she is doing and thanks for posting about this!

    Reply
    • July 11, 2012 at 1:19 pm
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      Karen, thanks, I noticed there isn’t a PayPal button right now, so let me look into that.

      Reply

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