Maudie and Me: Follow by Email

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

An Open Mind

It has been said that a good scientist  frees himself of concepts and keeps his mind open. Even though Christmas is only three days away, I am keeping my mind open. This year Maudie is prepared well in advance for the big dinner ahead and all the company. I hear her pouring the ingredients into the stuffing and marinating them so that she can just take them out of the fridge on Christmas morning and pop them into the bird.  The BIRD... Mmmmmm...

Maudie is like an artist with her cooking; she lets her intuition lead her wherever it wants.
There are many secrets to the enjoying of Christmas. One of my secrets is remembering the scents of the season. Maudie and I go outside each year to collect pine cones so that she can decorate, sometimes she sprays them silver and gold colors. I go with her to inspect the Yuletide scents and reminisce. The chill weather at Christmas agrees with me, and the frosty moss feels so refreshing on my paws. While Maudie collects cedar boughs and pine cones and sprigs, I perch myself on the fence and watch the squirrels jumping excitedly across the boughs above, they know it is Christmas too. Today, as I watched the young squirrels playing tag and squealing  and chattering about the generosity of  people at Yuletide,  I laughed to myself about how loveable they seemed. (Other times, they can be down right annoying!). I agree though; that there is something in the air at this time of year that makes us feel more generous. People lean over the fence to greet us and are especially pleasant this time of year.We seem to think kinder thoughts of others. Old Mister McLean even threw some treats up on the fence for me to eat, as he stopped to chat with Maudie. He mentioned how much he enjoyed her Trifle last year at Christmas. I know he will be expecting another invitation to dinner.
The smoke from the neighbors chimney reminds me of other Christmases along this street, reminds me of other  friends and people that wandered along and said hello and brought treats to share, or  just seemed more available to us at this wonderful time of year; years gone by. They say that a good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent upon arriving; but this is NOT the case with Old Mister McLean. He has an intention.

Maudie and Monsieur always try to make themselves available to the neighbors and do not reject anyone. This is the special time of year when so many can find themselves alone; like Mister McLean. That is probably why he did not bring his Pug with him this morning when he came over to the fence to chat. It is not that I do not like his Pug, like I mentioned; I am keeping my mind open. It is just that that dog STINKS!  (Just thinking about Christmas dinner with that Pug on our doorstep disgusts me.) The very thought of that Pug somehow has an effect on my salivary glands. I cannot even recall the delicious aroma of the turkey  when I think of the neighbor's dog racing around our house and panting on our doorstep during dinner.  I wish I could be more generous. I do not wish to reject him, after all; he is only a puppy! I want to use this situation and not waste it. Maybe that will be my New Year's resolution.

Meanwhile, as a gift to myself,  I will experiment with the concept of rising above these strong emotions, try to be more rational, and work on developing a better; more open and relaxed attitude during this wonderful season. After all, as Maudie always says; "What is a good man but a bad man's teacher? What is a bad man but a good man's job?" If I cannot wrap my mind around this concept, then I will be lost, however intelligent I am. 

 I know that Maudie will be proud of me, if I can just rise above this tangle of emotions, that seems to be set off by that Pug.  I will work on it. I love Maudie and want to improve and keep an open mind. It will be interesting to see if she notices the difference in me as I improve.  I do not think that it is a secret that I enjoy her approval! 

I am however, taking my own challenge mostly for myself. I want to be ready for all situations and do not want to waste anything; especially this opportunity. It is my great secret; like embodying the light.


Monday, December 19, 2011

Stepping Out of the Way At Yuletide



Why should the Lady of the house flit all over at this hectic time of year? Is fame or integrity more important? This is my conundrum today. It seems that every Yuletide Season the whole family has to be in such a rush planning get-togethers and meals and outings, in and out they go; chasing their tails!

Perhaps I am being too judgemental; I do that sometimes.

Although, I don't hold a degree in psychiatry, anyone can see that all this craziness is not peaceful- and I keep hearing them all wishing one another Peace and Happiness and a Joyous Noel, etc., etc.; and on and on...

I wish that Maudie could just take some advice from me once in a while; from my example. For instance; I am content with what I have. I rejoice in the plain old way things are, for I realize there is nothing lacking. Why... the whole world belongs to me. The very stars in the sky twinkle for me and the sun and the moon rise for me. Some people say that us cats are manipulative. I like to think of my manner as "allowing things to happen".

Take this mornig for instance, when Monsieur arose and came first into the kitchen; I was there.
As he made his coffee and cut their oranges; I was there.
As Monsieur opened the fridge and reached for his cream; I was there.

I like to think that I shape events as they come.

If my soft tail fur happened to brush Monsieur's leg hairs just before he poured his cream into the coffee cup, (even ever so softly; almost like a scultor with his clay putting the finishing loving touches upon his art;) I was there shaping events. Monsieur may detest animals in his kitchen but he has a heart. He more often follows his emotions when we are alone. And he did!

Then, of course, when Maudie arose and wandered into the kitchen to pour her cream into the bowl; I was there.As Monsieur likes his silence and peace in the morning, I was not going to protest if Maudie decided to pour me a bowl of cream as I passed by her leg.

Then, later, as Monsieur sat beside the "Temptations" and wrinkled his crackly newspaper; I was there. I taught Monsieur long ago that whenever he crunches the Temptations bag, I would come by so he could feed me, and get it over with before he forgot. Therefore, whenever Monsieur crunches any paper or bag when I am near, he automatically remembers that he should give me a Temptation. It is called "Subliminal Suggestion" and humans are very good at it. Even when they usually would rather protest! I admire Monsieur for learning this so quickly (even faster than Maudie!). So, this morning Monsieur automatically gave me my buscuits as Maudie was bathing.

Later as Maudie prepared breakfast for Monsieur, and crunched the cereal bag; I was there....so you can see how the events shape themselves. I am definately NOT manipulative.

When one simply steps out of the way and lets the event shape itself the true perfection seems imperfect, yet it is perfectly itself. True fullness seems empty, yet it is fully present. True straightness seems crooked. True art seems artless.

Gratitude is a precious thing. Today seems perfect, and I am truly present. Today is starting to shape itself into a very peaceful day. I am thankful and at peace. Let's hope that Maudie can find some peace in it, and let things happen. There is nothing better than to have a comfortable day with Maudie when she is not straining and stretching things all out of proportion and rushing frantically all over, flitting here and there. Remember the saying; "She who stands on tiptoe does not stand firm".

It is paramount to be the center of oneself, to be content; realizing there is nothing lacking. When one takes good care of oneself; one can be that "center" for others when all about them others are "losing it", and blaming it on you.

I think Maudie will agree; there is nothing better than taking a step out of the way at Yuletide, and being truly present!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Yuletide Rush

Eventually, tea time finds me longing for a little moment to ourselves, Maudie has been fluttering around all morning; fetching, sewing wrapping and singing. I inevitably find myself fagged out. So, today, I picked a sunny spot to settle down, ( I was going to read one of her animal books). I enjoy reading and pondering while my Mistress putters nearby.  Today, Maudie decided to putter elsewhere in the sewing room after I settled, so I sulked a bit before resettling on the sill !

Maudie loves to chat and describe all the intricate details of her day, as if I did not already know. I don't think there is a thought she can think without me already knowing. I have been here for years and follow her every move! She calls me all kinds of names, and I love her for it; but sometimes I suspect that she is losing it!!

When we first met she called me Faydra, and her daughter made a face when she heard it, so officially she named me Pushkins and wrote it on the medical information sheet at the doctor's office. Mostly, though; she calls me Sweetie or Beautiful or Lovie, or Monkey. Today as she was in such a rush to wrap gifts for the grandchildren, she called me Pumpkin; so I was surprised when she pulled me off the sill, called me over to her desk and gave me an early present...

The Yuletide rush is my favorite time of year because often I find tads of fascinating paper or ribbon or squashed up balls of fabric to play with and no-one seems to mind. Today, Maudie put a special big orange box in the corner beside her desk just for me and gently placed me inside of it with some woodsy smelling paper to hide under. What a thoughtful gift! I am in my element!

Maudie finally settled down at the table to have her tea and I am going to purr and purr for her. She loves it when I do. This is my gift to Maudie; my constant affection and support, and I never rush my purring. The whole world can be rolling around the heavens, and the stars in the very sky can twinkle with all of their distracting lights, but because I love Maudie so, I just purr for her with my deepest affections at my constant low decibel with fervor and consistency; and inside I feel as happy as a clam.

When she finally takes that moment to stroke my nose; I forgive Maudie for everything, (even for putting that pink leash around my neck when we went out, forgetting my name, and pulling me off my sunny window sill). Once she reaches down and gives me that gentle pat just to say she loves me, I can forgive anything. Maudie trusts me to do this. Trust and forgiveness are our reward for being best friends and always being here for each other.

There is no better feeling than sitting together at tea time; just Maudie and Me.