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First things first: some of you saw on Facebook and in the comments to Friday’s post that I was in the hospital over the weekend. It was unexpected – I woke up in A-fib at 5:30 Friday morning, and was in the ER 20 minutes later. They don’t know what caused it, even after doing repeated tests on gallons of blood, and Friday afternoon they did a Cardioversion. I had to spend the night, since they did the procedure so late in the day. Saturday I did a stress test that came back completely normal, and they finally released me late Saturday. (That’s the very very short version; we didn’t go straight from “my heart feels funny” to “let’s knock you out and shock you!”) I’m under the care of a very good Cardiologist, and I promise I’m following instructions.

If you’re interested, Fred made a video of my heart monitor before the Cardioversion and again after.

Before (YouTube link)

After (YouTube link)

(In that second video, they were talking about another patient; my potassium levels were fine.)

Fred reminded me yesterday of this (I was very out of it and didn’t remember it at all) : he was there when I awoke after the Cardioversion, and the first thing I said?

“I dreamed about cats.”

Well, DUH.


When I got home from the hospital Saturday evening, I got some great news!

They weren’t adopted together (though that would have been neat, right?), but they both went to great homes. I hope Khaleesi’s adoption sticks this time – it sounds like she’s going to be one spoiled girl.


A year ago, as I’m sure most of you remember, we had tiny baby kittens. One of them looked like this:


Another of them looked like this:


Well, the 19th (last Wednesday) marked their first birthday, and I got some updated pictures of Leia and Buttercup, who were adopted together last year!

Buttercup, all grown up and GORGEOUS.

Leia, all grown up and GORGEOUS (and floofy! That tail is pretty amazing, isn’t it?)

Sweet sisters, checking out their birthday present.

Thanks for the pictures, Mickey! Updates on former fosters are the BEST!


Angelo, checking out the cat tree in the hallway upstairs. The blue wall you see is the wall in Fred’s bedroom (I was actually sitting on his bed, trying to get Angelo to come snuggle with me. See the switchplate? I love that so much! I’m supposed to move it downstairs to my room, but keep forgetting.)

Angelo, having some bunny-kicking time with the rainbow catnip toy.

Crazy eyes!

I love how Angelo’s sitting with his tail draped over Mariette. He’s like “Here, you don’t have a tail. Have some of mine!” (That’s Ferdinand’s tail nub and Orlando’s tail, in the bottom of the picture.)

Angelo, toe-suckin’.

Mariette, showing off her great big bunny feet.

Angelo, still doing his thing.


I had originally planned to put up a post on Saturday with pictures that I took of cats at the shelter, but got sidetracked with being in the hospital and all. I think what I’ll do instead is share them throughout this week.

I unfortunately don’t know the names of most of these cats; I’ll tell you what their names are when I know ’em!

Sweet little tuxie kitten, enjoying some sunshine.

Another of the sweet kittens running around the shelter. I also got a picture of her carrying around a toy ball, but it was kind of blurry; I thought this was a better picture.

Weird-looking cat, right? This is one of the shelter dogs, Jodi. (Edited to add: I call them “shelter dogs”, but they actually belong to the manager, Susan. They’re not up for adoption – well, actually, offer Susan enough money on a day when they’re being particularly naughty and she might let you have ’em! ๐Ÿ˜‰ )

The other shelter dog, Jake. He looks very Chewbacca-y, doesn’t he? Both dogs are sweet and friendly (and mostly interested in food!)

This is Granger. OH, he is just a little troublemaker and silly, sweet, and super friendly. I was thanking my lucky stars that Fred wasn’t with me, ’cause little Mr. Trouble here is Fred’s kind of kitten!

This is when I went into the cat room. I’m not sure who this is, but s/he would like some pettin’.

Don’t know who this is, either, but I love the way it looks like he’s balancing on his front paws!

I do know that these are Mr. Stripey (center) and Sungold (on the right).

I’m fairly sure this is Christina. She’s such a pretty girl!

I’m not sure who this sweetie-pie is, but s/he was enjoying the spring weather!

Look who kept following me around, demanding that I give her some love. I knew right away that this was Pepsi, because she’s the subject of one of my favorite pictures, this one:

This is Rascal – I think that white mark on his forehead looks like a hastily scrawled heart! Also, he looks like he’s wearing an orange breathing mask over his nose and chin, doesn’t he?

Okay, that’s it for the Challenger’s House shelter cats for today – more tomorrow!


Miz Poo was so happy to see me home again that I couldn’t have peeled her off me if I’d wanted to. (Luckily, I didn’t want to!)


2013: Oh, girl tabby, you make me want to pop you right in my mouth.
2012: No entry.
2011: Despite challenges from Corbie and Jake, Elwood would like to assure you that he remains king of the scratcher. He knows you were worried.
2010: โ€œShall I run across the room like a little lunatic, or shall I take a nap? Decisions, decisions.โ€
2009: The Seven, named.
2008: No entry.
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.



3-24-14 — 59 Comments

  1. So glad you’re feeling better Robyn! And it’s so nice to hear about the adoptions, too.

  2. So glad you’re doing better. The adoptions are great news! Buttercup and Leia are BEAUTIFUL!!! There are some beautiful cats (and dogs!) at the shelter. Aren’t Mr. Stripey & Sungold your former fosters? What’s up with that? Oooooh, the Gingers… I loves me an orange kitteh! And Rambler… me thinks that Fred should chauffeur you to / from the shelter for a while to ensure you fully recover.. perhaps a chance meeting!?!? LOL! Miz Poo says she is NOT having ANY MORE of that – – you better take care of yourself, Robyn!

    • Sungold and Mr. Stripey are my former fosters (they were from the ‘Maters litter), and I need to go add this information to their page. Basically, they were doing well in their new home, but as they got older they started bullying the older cats in the home, so they had to come back. They’re in the cat room and doing well – they were happy to see me and be petted, but they also ran off and played, too.

  3. Wow, Robyn, I am soooo glad to hear that you are ok. Please please take care of yourself. You have a fan club here cheering for you!!!

    I knew Fern would be snatched up in an instant. I am sooooo happy for Khaleesi. All my fingers are crossed that this is the home that was meant for her!

    Buttercup and Leia are just gorgeous! Who knew Leia would end up a lovely poof ball? She looks a bit Maine Coon in those pics!

    Jake and Jodi are adorable. I think they should be adopted together as it seems their sizes are perfect and their names roll off your tongue (i.e. “These are my dogs Jake and Jodi!”)

    • I edited the post to reflect this, but I guess I should have made clear that Jake and Jodi live at the shelter, but they belong to the shelter manager so they’re not up for adoption. They’re awfully adorable, though, aren’t they? ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. My brother-in-law has had A-Fib, scary but he’s still kicking at 62. It is scary though. Princess Leia has turned out to be the gorgeous, pampered Princess I always knew she would be! What a doll. And Buttercup is pretty too. (I always had a soft spot for Leia, she looks like a cat my youngest sister had years ago).

    Glad you are feeling better, and just follow doctor’s orders (not always easy, I know).

  5. Glad to hear you stabilized quickly, that must have been scary! Thinking hugs and health in your direction.

  6. Oh my goodness! ๐Ÿ™ Glad you are ok! Please take care and take things easy!

    So so happy for more kitty adoptions and updates!! Take care

  7. I’m glad to hear you’re doing better. Please stay healthy!

    And I’m glad to hear about Ferdinand and Khaleesi!

  8. Robyn, glad you are ok. Sometimes these heart events just come out of no where and then they are gone for good. I am sure you did your research. Even though we never personally met. I think we all feel a strong connection to you, Fred, your precious kitties and the outdoor clan. We love your blog in our house and look forward to it daily.

    • It was scary – but I think it would have been scarier for me if Fred had been in the bed!

      My heart’s all “Why be normal?” ๐Ÿ˜‰

  9. Robyn, I’m so glad to hear that you’re okay. Watching that first video was scary (and, ugh, brought me back to giving birth and listening to my daughter’s heart rate fluctuate like crazy in utero — she’s fine too), but I’m sure not nearly as scary as going through it yourself. I hope Fred and all the kids are treating you well! Take it easy!

    I have the same question about Mr. Stripey and Sungold — when did they go back to the shelter? I must have missed something. I loved that ‘Maters litter (and their momma) and I’m sad to hear that any of them don’t have permanent homes…

    Yay for adoptions, though! And that little Rambler, what a great name! What a sweet face! I’d be a total sucker for him too.

    • I’ll try to remember to mention the Sungold and Stripey thing in tomorrow’s post for anyone who didn’t catch my answer in the comments today. They came back in November – they were doing okay in their new home at first, but as they got older they were apparently teaming up and bullying the elderly cats in the house, so they had to come back. They’re in the cat room with plenty of other cats and doing great now. I think it’ll only be a matter of time before someone falls in love with their goofy selves.

  10. I want to adopt Rascal and rename him “Walter” (Breaking Bad reference!).

  11. Sounds like you had one crazy weekend! I’m certainly glad you are doing better now, and I’m also very glad that some fosters got their forever homes!

    When I saw that picture of Mariette with Ferdinand’s tail draped over her, at first glance it looked like a cat with a SUPER long tail had decided to walk through the room: http://s30.postimg.org/n2mzsuawx/the_longest_tail.jpg

  12. take care of yourself – let Mizz Poo pin you to the sofa ๐Ÿ™‚

    YAY for adoptions and updates…..LOVE

    great shelter pictures (and I suspect we all have those days with our own animals….for the right price on the right day….) haha

  13. My diagnosis is that your heart went through a period of stretching. Yes, you already had a big, generous heart, but now there’s even more room in it. XOX

  14. I’m glad the Cardioversion appears to have worked. I’m even more glad you are following your Cardiologist’s instructions. That will get harder to do as time goes on (if you don’t have problems), so resist the temptation to slack off. I’ve had AV delay for 15 years and counting, so I know. Stay on top of it and you’re fine. Forget about it and it gets on top of you!

  15. Thank you for the info on your potassium. I ended up with PVC a few years go while I was dieting and trying to lose weight. I was following conventional recommendations, drink lots of water, etc and while the doctor didn’t have anything for me other than “it’s PVC and you are fine” I read up on it and on a whim decided to start taking potassium.. they stopped almost immediately. I keep wanting to ask people who have been having afib around me (and oddly there have been quite a few lately) about their electrolyte levels.. but I only felt comfortable doing that with you ๐Ÿ™‚

    I love shelter pictures! ๐Ÿ™‚

    and what is it about no tail that makes back feet look HUGE!!

    and I hope Angelo doesn’t suck his toe right off ๐Ÿ˜‰

  16. My mom spend the weekend in the hospital with heart issues, too (although hers are long-standing). Glad you’re feeling better! And what’s with Mr. Stripey and Sungold still being at the shelter??

    • They came back in November – they were okay in their adoptive home at first, but then started teaming up and bullying the elderly cats in the home, so they had to come back. They are SO sweet, though, I hope someone falls in love with them soon!

  17. Robyn, Iโ€™m so glad that youโ€™re home and comfortable. Hopefully you wonโ€™t have to do a potassium push. That is a horrible, horrible thing. Eat a banana or another bag of potato chips. The baked kind of course. Iโ€™m glad that you have friend and excellent medical care. Sounds like he broke the speed limit to get you to the ER in 20 minutes. We wonโ€™t tell.

    Iโ€™m not surprised that someone swooped in and snapped up Ferdinand, heโ€™s such a love. Iโ€™m glad that our mama dragon got adopted too. Iโ€™m keeping my fingers crossed!

    I knew that Buttercup was going to be a heartbreaker for Leiaโ€™s so gorgeous too! Thank you for the update Mickey, we love seeing these former babies all grown up and happy.

    I love that Angelo/Mariette picture. Heโ€™s so willing to share his tail. Theyโ€™re both so relaxed they donโ€™tโ€™ even think about it.

    Wait, those shelter cats, are those waiting adoption? Pepsiโ€™s still there? And so are Stripey and Sungold? And how does anyone resist a sunbathing tuxie?

    • Yes, the shelter cats are all available for adoption. I think Pepsi was adopted but returned (she’s a little intense), and Sungold and Stripey came back in November.

      I will happily eat more bananas! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • I should add that the sunbathing tuxie is still a kitten, I don’t think he had been neutered yet. He (and I’m saying “he” because I don’t remember whether it was a boy or girl) was SO freakin’ sweet!

  18. Glad to hear you’re doing fine after the A-Fib. Take care of yourself, and mind your doctors’ instructions. All the permanent residents & future fosters (not to mention Fred) are counting on you, so please… no more hospitals.

  19. Add my well-wishes to the others, please! Glad you’re okay, that is scary (husband spent a weekend in hospital a couple years ago with it).
    So nice you had good adoption news on coming home, AND of course Miz Poo to help you heal.
    Take care!!

  20. So glad you’re home and doing well! I was following along on FB as all that was happening and I’ve been searching for this one picture darn near the whole time and I can’t find it! I was going to post it to your wall.. Anyway, it was a picture of cats (duh) and it talked about the heart health benefits of owning/petting a cat. Then I was going to tell you “Yer doin’ it wrong!” lol
    Sorry, I know it’s not funny to go through that kind of thing, but it hit my weird funny bone that way.. ๐Ÿ™‚ Love you, glad you’re better!

    Love the update! Why don’t I remember Leia being a floofy girl? They both still look like little princesses!

  21. Woof! Not a fun weekend – didn’t catch it until I saw the Friday comments. Glad everything is copacetic.

    Leia turned FLOOFY! Awesome. ^^

    Hey Robyn, wanna hear a potassium joke?


  22. I too was checking in on FB throughout the weekend hoping for updates. So relieved that you are back home and that things seem to be OK. So many of us would be lost without you, Robyn, to start off our days with.

    Wonderful news about the adoptions.

    And love love love the update on those two precious princesses.

    Awww, Miz Poo — what a wonderful welcome home!

  23. Keep getting better Robyn !!!! Make sure Fed and all the kitties spoil you rotten for a while !! You deserve it !! and follow doctors orders.

    Healing hugs to you !!!!

  24. Please feel better, Robyn, and take care of yourself!! Your readers – not to mention your cats and fosters and Fred and George and Gracie and …. – all need you!!

  25. Take care of you, sweetie!! Glad things turned out well and you have an awesome support in Fr3d!! Wishing you all the best ๐Ÿ™‚

  26. I am soooo happy that you are back home and feeling better!

    And happy dance for the adoptions!! You know, HBO is showing free-views of Game of Thrones’ last season, and they were on the cover of this month’s Vanity Fair. I wonder if that helped boost Khaleesi’s profile any?

  27. I’m glad you’re feeling better and that Miz Poo was so happy to see you! ๐Ÿ˜€

    I’m also glad to hear about the adoptions. You and Fred are so kind to do what you do…

  28. So much good news!

    I’ve thought of you every day and sent out all my best purring thoughts as I hoped you were okay. Missed the posts, of course!

    And a big yay for Khaleesi (and Ferdinand). I’m always so happy to know there are more and more cat people out there whose homes are not yet filled, er, overflowing with kitties.

    And all the shelter cats are wonderful. Great photos with personalities coming through.

    Miz Poo and me too are happy you are well!

    As I type this, MY Stinkerbelle is yowling her pretty little head off and doing the “I’m-so-sexy” dance right next to me. Spay is scheduled for next week…

  29. So glad that you’re OK, Robyn. I’m sure Fred is relieved, too. Take care of yourself! Wonderful news about the adoptions, also!

  30. Yikes Robyn, that sounds scary. I am glad you are on the mend, take care of yourself!!

  31. Oh my – I’ve been behind on reading these blog posts – but glad to see that you are doing OK now. Best Wishes!