Lessons to Learn from Ella

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By Crystal

            Ella, our two-year-old cat, has taught both Ron and me many lessons.  One of them is that you can play with anything.

            I save the green plastic tops from the orange juice bottles so that Ella can push them around the house like a hockey puck.  She’s so cute and funny when she does this.  She stole a pair of my fuzzy socks folded together from my room and drags them all over the house carrying it in her mouth.  Ella will bring them wherever we are and then meow to tell us.  We are now calling them Fred.  She has a stuffed white bunny she also takes around as well as a cloth snowman.

            When I was a child, I liked to use bottle caps, toilet paper rolls, cardboard, etc. to make things.  The silver bottle caps that came off of milk bottles I made into pots and pans for my Barbie doll.  I used my Dad’s pipe cleaners, after they came out in color, to make a whole zoo full of animals – giraffes, elephants, lions or tigers and more.

            My adopted grandparents, Grandpa and Grandma Kampman sent us small magazines with directions on making things using materials we had in our house – felt, glue, cardboard, paper, buttons and just odds and ends in the house.  Jeannette and I really enjoyed reading them and creating toys and decorations.

            Today I use all kinds of paper including origami paper, tissue paper, wrapping paper, and cardboard, to make altered books and 3D cards, mobiles, and other crafts. I use felt, fabric, lace, thread, empty spools (which Ella also plays with), buttons, beads, trims, and paper clips to make dolls, doll clothing and accessories, jewelry and other projects.

            Ella finds all of my craft making fascinating and she tries to take my thread, papers, buttons, etc. to play with and push under the TV stand and the couch and even the refrigerator.  From time to time I take a ruler to get her toys out from under places.  She is so surprised to see them.  I think she believes there is a cat on the other side who is taking her toys and playing with them.

            Being empty nesters, Ron and I miss the girls, but having Ella to play with, and pet, helps.  Ella is also very friendly to all of our girls and grandchildren, neighbors, and friends who come to our house.  She has to watch the cable guy when he fixes the computer and the TV, and the plumber, and the gas company guy.  We cherish her and her entertaining ways.

            I think the biggest lesson we have learned from Ella is to live in the moment and be happy.  Worrying about tomorrow (especially these days) doesn’t help anything, and regretting what happened in the past won’t change anything.  Watching the news can make you really depressed, but watching Ella with Fred, or her bunny, or the plastic top makes us laugh.

Ron’s Corner:

            Ella is a daddy’s girl. Oh, she loves Crystal plenty, but she reminds me of our girls when they were young. Then, as now, I am the one always leaving. Somehow, she seems to know when I am ready to leave the house. She plops down on my lap and tries to weigh me down. When I get up, she will out race me to the door and block it with her sturdy eight-pound body. This ploy never works, but I give her props for her persistence.

I let her out of the back room in the morning and she follows me wherever I go. If I don’t periodically pay attention to her, she will try to trip me. In the evening, when I go upstairs to work on the computer, she will follow with Fred and try to distract me. Eventually, she will get bored and lie down on a bed, until I am done, or go back down to Crystal. When I do get back into the living room, Crystal is usually working on some craft project with Ella close by. As soon as I sit down, she (Ella not Crystal) will jump onto my lap and watch TV with me. That’s right she likes TV, especially nature specials.

            Over the years I’ve had several jobs, which required me to be out of town; sometimes for months at a time. When I would come home for weekend visits, the girls would be all over me. They never knew, that I missed them as much as they missed me. When I come home and Ella comes racing from whatever she was playing with, it just reminds me of those times, and the love we still share with our daughters.

            Crystal and I agree, as silly as it might seem, that this is just another example of how God knows what we need. When Ella stuck her head out from the raspberry bushes a couple of summers ago, the last thing we thought we needed, was another cat. I guess we were wrong.

Ella with Fred
Ella watching TV with me
Category: Animals and Pets

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