Kittens, Kansas City, and Insights

Today my brain is frayed thinking about three different things.

  1. The two kittens I’ve adopted. So, they’re still having a little trouble drinking milk from a bowl, but I think by the end of the week they’ll be little pros. As you can see by the picture, one is cream-colored with taupe gray on his tail and tipping his ears. The other is a little yellow fellow. My husband called him Yeller because he meows a lot and loudly. What we actually name them is still in the air for now. Their mother seems to kind of want them, but kind of not. (I remember days like that.) She was raising them in the rafters of our gazebo and one had fallen out. I tried to put them back with her today and they were crawling over the edge before I even got off the ladder. I have tried to bring the mother in the house, and she has, in turn, left many claw marks on my arms during the process. She’s a little wild. I feel bad about bringing the kittens in, but we tend to see cats come and go all the time on the farm. (And when I say, come and go, by “go” I mean, take a dirt nap.) We live right by a gravel road and people are generally going around 40 when they pass our house. Maybe faster. In the night, animals often meet their demise to either a passing pickup or a hungry predator. But these two little boys are just too cute to leave to fate in the dangerous outside world. Mama Cat can come in, but those little boys aren’t going back out. I lost my favorite cat last week and I don’t intend to lose these two. Case closed.
  2. We’re planning a little family weekend for August. Kansas City, Missouri is four hours from where we live and around four hours from St. Louis where my daughter lives. I thought we’d compromise and get together midway and it’s looking like it might work for us to do that soon. We’re in the planning stages, but as always, I know we’ll want to listen to some Blues, eat some barbeque, and enjoy the pool at whatever hotel we pick. I’ve heard people say they like to stay in Overland Park, but I don’t know why. Any suggestions are welcome. I’ve been to the Power & Light District and there is a free concert there one of the nights. We’ll probably take that in. And I know we’ll drop by Arthur Bryant’s. Any suggestions on a great place to stay or a really cool place to eat, or a gotta-do activity or attraction, would be appreciated.
  3. The inspiring church service I went to on Sunday. We have a new Pastor at our church. A young guy. Being the church secretary, I work with him and find him to be accommodating, intelligent, and a good leader. But it’s during service on Sunday when I see who he is as a minister, and not just as my boss. He comes alive talking about God. You can see it. You can feel it. And most importantly, you leave mulling over ideas and filled with a bit of surety of what this whole Christianity thing is all about. I’ve found over the years that understanding scripture, or Bible stories, or what God is doing in my life, kind of comes in bursts. Epiphanies. Moments of Clarity… which, by the way, has ended up being a dandy name for this blog and subsequent book! Bits of understanding cross over us like a ray of sunshine poking through a cloudy sky… then it disappears. Deep insights and feelings are hard to grasp and harder to hold tight. It’s why, he reminded us, we need to go to church every Sunday. Just like school. You can’t just learn math one day and be good for life. You have to practice. Make it part of your process and routine. I’m just guessing here, of course. I run so darn fast from any math problem it’s like my hair is on fire. But I assume if one does a job with math, it becomes far easier the more often you do it. Everything’s that way, isn’t it? Parenting, writing, running, singing, life… the more often you do it, the easier it gets, the better you understand it, the better doing it you become. Yes. I think I’ll keep going to church on Sunday. I could use all the epiphanies I can get.

18 thoughts on “Kittens, Kansas City, and Insights

  1. I loved this blog, Gina! From the photo of the kittens to the beautiful words about your new pastor and the inspiring church service. Somehow, in my mind, they’re all related. Life is about caring and compassion and paying attention, listening and watching for those small miracles that happen every day.

  2. That little grey kitten is beautiful. I would love to have him (but we only have females since we usually have indoor cats. Right now, we only have our “Holstein” (Daisy) since Pepper died a while back at age 18. (Daisy is 16 now.) That kitten’s coloring is just beautiful, though. Love the comment by your friend who called it a “Crazy cat lady’s starter kit.” I think you need one of each gender for a starter kit.
    We always go to KC over Labor Day. You should, too! We go to the Irishfest at the Crown Center and stay at the Weston right there. Lots of fun and we can drink beer and not have to worry about driving! (We just need to be sure we get to the right hotel room!)
    Sounds like your new pastor is a neat guy and really knows how to touch the congregation. It is wonderful when it works out that way. Of course, we Catholics get a lot of “practice” going to church. We must be in the remedial group since we need so much more practice than you “Pro.s!”
    Loved your blog entry this time. And love the kittens! I want one (but Dennis would kill me!)

  3. 1) Gina – Re. the photo. Isn’t that what they call “the crazy cat lady starter kit?” Seriously, Shari says “Awwww….” (She’s right there for you if you need cat support.)

    2) I got to KC for the first time in my life this past Memorial Day weekend. Went to the places you mentioned. Also went to Kansas City Union Station. My bias sez it’s worth a visit if you haven’t been there yet.

    3) As you know, keep watching the B-P for more on your new pastor. ‘Nuff said.

    • ginabarlean@gmail.com says:

      When will that article come out, Jim? We went to Union Station once a while ago. It’s awesome. Maybe worth another trip.
      Yes. Crazy cat lady may be the road I’m heading down.

  4. Karna Ahlschwede says:

    Look up a town just north of kc. Called weston. Has a distillery named McCormacks or McCormicks. Little cute shops downtown, adorable houses. Maybe even some book ideas for you! Anyway the distillery has a shop in town that you can taste test for like a quarter a shot. We always come with some new cocktail creations after a visit.

  5. So adorable. I’m allergic to cats, but I think kittens are about the cutest things ever (I just can’t hold and breathe them in). And I agree with your pastor. Sundays are my favorite day. I love going and having my spiritual cup filled from all that I learn at church each week (and visiting with all the nice people). If I went only occasionally, I’d miss out on a lot. Have fun on your vacation with your daughter.

    • ginabarlean@gmail.com says:

      Glad you can at least enjoy dogs. Unfortunately, the mother wants her babies back and I’m starting to break.

  6. Well, I don’t about the parenting getting easier the more often you do it. Each child offers his or her own challenges and it’s like starting all over again every time. It’s a little more familiar and you’ve got the basics, but, boy! they’re all different.

    • ginabarlean@gmail.com says:

      I’m doing baby duty on kittens. I’m remembering how routine it was to mix formula, throw a diaper on, get up half asleep and give a bottle. Right now it seems like a lot of work, but when I was doing it, I remember nervous when I first started, and competent by the time I survived it.

  7. Lucy Adkins says:

    Great blog. I especially enjoyed your comments about your new pastor, about him “coming alive” when he talk about God…It’s what we do, isn’t it, when we’re involved in what we love? Committed to it? We come alive–and oh, what a feeling! Thanks for your inspiring thoughts, Gina,

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