Laura's beloved companion through almost 18 years of life, 2 marriages, and travels throughout western North America, Tuxedo, the kitty matriarch, lived with Laura longer than anyone, even her parents. The quintessential "fraidy cat", Tux, over the years, adjusted to the arrival of 9 cats and 7 dogs. Her long life is attributed, at least in part, to the extra special attention she received from Steve who fed her every time she meowed; approximately 3,876 times per day.




Kiely Lu Ann is our prodigal puss. The pampered, affectionate "baby" kitty for a year, she reacted badly to the arrival of her sister-cat Penelope. After a year of becoming ever-more distant, Kiely ran away from home. Distraught, we searched and searched—even consulted a psychic (who said she was dead). Six months later, thin and hungry, Kiely returned! When she is home, she is home… planted firmly in the house, demanding food and affection in her own sweet way. But her wild side rules and we're never sure how long her stay will last. 

Kiely Tracking:

  • Away June '98, a brief ghostly vision of her seen in late July, then home in December, thin, hungry, demanding food and affection.
  • Spent a week away in January '99 and left in March for five long months.
  • We had a happy reunion in August but only for a month... gone again in September. A brief sighting in October (running across the road away from home) preceded her return the last week and a half of November and then again... away.
  • Home on Christmas morning… Merry Christmas to us! But alas... she disappeared on New Years, 2000…. just home for the holidays, we supposed… but back three days later.
  • She left on Jan 8... home on Jan 19, away Jan 25, returned home Feb 7. She stayed home through the big rains but when the sun came out (Valentine's Day) … away she went.
  • To celebrate the 14th anniversary of the day that Steve and I met (March 8), Kiely came home. A brief 8 days later, she left.
  • March 26 she came home... only gone 10 days! Alas, this visit was brief and traumatic... Kiely left the eve of March 31, chased off by her sister-cat and suffering from Manx Cat Syndrome and possibly intestinal parasites too. Fortunately she only stayed away for the weekend and when she came home we put her under house arrest for 10 days while we gave her medicine for parasites (even though her tests were negative), hoping for the long-shot chance she would respond. The bad news is that she didn't. At the end of the treatment, after a long week of confining her and cleaning up messes, we let her go out. She went and caught herself some "real" food (we'd been trying to get her to eat rice at the vet's suggestion; she didn't think much of the idea), and came back in to eat it in the house (in the middle of the night). This didn't thrill us but neither does her leaving. She ate; she went out. Under the cirmcumstances, Kiely needs to live outside but we missed her instantly. All we can hope for is that she'll check in often and let us know she's all right. This was her saddest departure of all but we didn't have to wait long to see her as she showed up in the middle of the night and in the morning seemed quite content to sleep her day away in the house. I had just cleaned everything and put away all the "Kiely protection". I wanted her to go out on her own so I wouldn't have to put her out but no such luck. When the time came to leave for work I gently carried her basket outside, and when I left (April 14), she was sleeping peacefully in her basket on top the dryer.
  • One month later, on Mother's Day morning, I said to Steve "maybe Kiely will come home for mother's day". And then she did!! Woo Hoo! We liked it. She was her usual loving self, and seemed healthy. But before the week was up I reached my limit of cleaning up after her and we put her outside. That was May 20, 2000.
  • Five long Kiely-less months went by and, oh happy day … on October 26, she came home! Yee Ha! Westi and Michael, living back at home, were overjoyed to see her but it was their first experience with her health problems. We kept her in long enough to get her to the vet for updates on her shots and worm her, and then gave her a bed on top the trailer and tried relocating her to our domain as an outside kitty. It worked great for a week, until Penny realized she could go up there too. Kiely checked in once or twice a day for a couple of weeks but things with Penny got progressively more intense.On November 11, Kiely set off on another adventure...
  • ... Returning just in time for Laura's birthday. Good timing, Kiely! Her visit lasted just a few days and we've been waiting for her return ever since. Steve's birthday came and went... no Kiely. Christmas and New Year's came and went... no Kiely.
  • January 10... a little late for the holidays but home. She got snuggled and loved and fed before leaving less than 24 hours later. Stayed away a couple of nights, came home for a couple of more, during which time she spent evenings wrapped in a towel (to keep her poison oak contaminated fur away from me) snuggled in bed with me. What a sweetie! We worried about her in a huge hail storm that happened on January 25th and it did inspire her to come home in the middle of the night. By morning she was gone. She's been home, gone and home again regularly ever since.
  • Spring 2001 and Kiely has become a house cat again! Westi and Michael determined that her health issues abate (mostly) if she doesn't eat wet food (sorry Barney and Midnight, that means you don't get it either), and with Penni Sue busy guarding Steve and I up at the trailer, Kiely's life in the house is relatively smooth. Occasional forays out at night are about her only jaunts lately... by day she sleeps on Westi's bed or on the couch... the kids like to live dangerously!
  • April 13... Westi and Michael left for Florida yesterday. Kiely seemed to decide that there was no point in her sticking around either... we haven't seen her since.
  • January 2004. Almost 3 years later it's hard to believe that Kiely is gone. Last week we saw a "found cat" sign at the mailboxes and just that fast, the car was in reverse to read the sign. A day later we saw a cat in the shadows beyond the mailboxes and spent several minutes meowing to it trying to get a look. Reason would have it that Kiely is gone and yet our hearts continue to hope. Kiely, we love you. Please come home.
Barney and Charlie Homer and Angel Tuxedo and Kiely Penelope Sue & Tyler Missi and Joey Just Midnight Sadat and Kelsey Tomo, Domingo and Iphy