Saturday, July 20, 2024
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Photos From the Archives and a New Edition: The Girls Dinner Club

Mariposa joins the Girls Club.
Mariposa joins the Girls Club.

I shared the photo above on December 23, the day Mariposa officially became a member of The Girls Dinner Club and finally joined the big cats for dinner. It makes me think of the Girls Clubs of the past decade who had always arranged themselves on the cabinet for meals: Peaches, Cookie, Kelly, Mimi and Bella, each in their turn. How they have evolved…

Up to that point, though Mariposa had run of the house since the beginning of November, she still had her meals in the bathroom. But she was integrating well and was more and more curious about what happened downstairs. I hesitate to add another kitty to eat in the small space we have so I do it slowly and carefully. Mariposa loves other cats and treats them with respect so they don’t mind her at all, and her habits wouldn’t be likely to upset the balance.

I don’t assign spots to cats, that would be pointless. I let them find a spot where they are comfortable and then set their dish in front of them. Mariposa only ate one meal up there as the girls welcomed her, but she ended up eating on the floor for the rest of her meals. Still, it was a notable occasion.

Prior to Mariposa joining, the Girls Club had included only Mewsette, Mimi and Bella, a group which originated some time in 2015 and still gather for meals. I took the photo below in 2016 when I wrote about observing Mimi for symptoms of the lymphoma-like condition she had developed each spring for several years. We have only seen very mild symptoms of that condition in the past to years, so it seems to be a seasonal issue that we have under control.

Mimi eats between Mewsette and Bella.
Mimi eats between Mewsette and Bella.

Prior to Bella joining the Girls Club in 2015 we had had many fosters for two years while the entire Family of Five ate on the cabinet in those famous lineups as in the photo below from 2014. I have no idea why the did this, but it made great photo opportunities from in 2013 and 2014.

five black cats
Breakfast: watching me.

Before the era of The Five was the era of the Tricolor Girls Club, The Tortie Girls Club, and then Mimi joined. I sketched Kelly, Mimi and Cookie in “Dinnertime” on December 7, 2011, just a few days into my three-year run of daily sketches, and just about two months before we lost Cookie. I didn’t take a reference photo, but the memory of the three of them eating there each day inspired me to capture the moment while I could, my sketchpad and pencils at the ready after I’d served them. After we lost Cookie in 2012 it was just Kelly and Mimi. I can’t find any photos of the two of them though I know I took a few, but it was a sad time as we knew Kelly wasn’t well, and suffered from losing Cookie. Mimi did her best to comfort our last little tortie.

"Dinnertime!", pencil © BernadetteE. Kazmarski
“Dinnertime!”, pencil © BernadetteE. Kazmarski

And before the little three in the Girls Club, there were four kitties because Peaches was a founding member in this photo from 2010, on the day Mimi decided she would join the Girls Dinner Club. The Tricolors had been gathering there from 2007. They are all small girls and got along well, so even though they were crowded it worked out okay. Mimi was thrilled to really be a member of a group and no longer acted as if she didn’t feel as if she fit in.

My Four Girls
My Four Girls

Peaches, Cookie and Kelly were the inaugural Girls Dinner Club in 2007 because before that the cabinet was in front of the window and I had only a table. Again, I know I have photos but can’t find even one, and it may be that they were blurry with inadequate cameras. There was more room on the floor for the cats to spread out before the cabinet was in the middle of the room, and so they did. After we lost Lucy, when I cleaned the house top to bottom after we learned she’d had FIP, I switched around the kitchen too. But for about 10 years The Girls Dinner Club has been meeting on the cabinet for both breakfast and dinner, slowly evolving.

Photos From the Archives and Vintage Photos

Photos pulled “From the Archives” were taken by one or another digital camera of mine between 2002 and, well, yesterday, but usually they are older than that, and I had never had the chance to feature them. Vintage Photos are from my film archives back to 1983 when I purchased my Pentax K-1000 camera. They’re a fun way to “introduce” other members of my feline family who came and went before I began blogging, and to illustrate my feline family in general from days gone by.

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Rescue, Foster, Rehome, Repeat 2019: Pittsburgh C.A.T. 2019 Calendar
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Weekly schedule of features:

Sunday: Essays, Pet Loss, Poetry, The Artist’s Life

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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.

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