4-3-15 Lucy’s Birth Story

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Okay, first things first: I’ve named Mama. She is officially Lucille Ball (there have been a lot of Challenger’s House cats named Lucy, one of them even my own (Lucy Peppers)), but I can’t imagine I’ll ever call her anything but Lucy. Well, maybe Mama Lu.

(I actually had a Lucille in the past, too. Clearly I like that name!)

I haven’t named the babies yet, and in fact we haven’t looked to see what we’ve got. I’m intending to determine sexes and assign names by Monday. I always post 7 days a week for the first month or so after we get newborns, and this time around won’t be any exception. That gives those of you who read from work a little something extra to look forward to on Mondays!

The usual Q&A/linkfest Friday will be pushed off ’til tomorrow (and combined with the weekly roundup, with some extra pictures added), because I wanted to get Lucy’s birth story (even though there’s not a lot to it, since she shot those babies out so fast) down while it’s fresh in my mind.

So, nothing about Wednesday morning indicated to me that I’d be seeing any babies. Lucy greeted me at the door first thing and told me in no uncertain terms that her linen needed freshening, her face needed feeding, and her litter box needed scooping. She gulped down the food I brought her, and then I sat with her, gave her some love, and took some flattering pictures.

It is entirely possible that she gave up and birthed those babies so I’d stop taking pictures of her from this angle.

“You not impressing me much, lady.”

I mean, come on. Look at that! It was a belly of beauty.

“My eyes is up here, lady.”

She ate three cans of food before noon, which made me decide that the babies were at least a couple of days off. We had some bonding time, and after I’d given her lots and lots of love (and was covered in fur, because my LORD has that girl been shedding like crazy), I went off to do something important. Okay, I went off to take a nap. One of the things I envy about Connie‘s kitten room is that she has a couch in there. I’ve been saying forever that we need something like that in ours, but the room is really too small for a full-sized couch. I used to nap on the floor of the kitten room, but I have grown elderly and my back will only put up with that for so long. So now I nap on Fred’s bed when I feel the afternoon calls for a nap. Which – did I mention elderly? – is most afternoons.

After, I was checking my email, and Kathie had sent me a link to my Alien Belly video, which had been posted on MSN.com. I was just responding to her email when I thought “Huh. I forgot to look in on Mama before I came downstairs.” It had been about an hour and a half since I’d last checked on her, and I kind of had a feeling, so I went and did so.

She was in the back of the crate, she had the wide eyes of “What is going onnnnnnnnnnn?!”, and she was having contractions. I ran back downstairs, got my phone and camera, and ran back up. I’d been back in the room for about five minutes when she cried, turned in circles in the back of the crate, and I could hear the kitten being born.

The first kitten was born at 4:53. She got the kitten a little cleaned up, and contractions started almost immediately. From what I could tell, the kitten looked dark.
The second kitten – one of the orange or buff ones – was born at 5:01.
She had a little bit of a break, and the third – an orange or buff – was born at 5:29.
#4 – another dark one – was born at 5:41.
She got a decent break, and then #5 – orange or buff – was born at 6:23.
#6 – a dark one – was born at 6:48.
We thought maybe she was done, but after about half an hour she started having contractions again. Finally, at 7:57 the last – an orange or buff – was born.

So it was a quick and drama-free delivery. That’s the way I like it! I wish that she hadn’t dug a nest in the very back of the crate to give birth – made it hard to take decent pictures, and HELLO, LUCY, it’s all about ME! – but she did it her way, and she’s certainly the boss when it comes to that.

She and the babies are all doing great. She got a little behind in the cleaning of them yesterday (haha, “a little behind”! I crack me up! (“Crack!” HA HA, AM 12 YEARS OLD)), but she caught up. The babies all have nice round bellies and are getting enough to eat and no problems latching on. I was able to weigh 4 of them yesterday morning before she’d had enough of me and grabbed a little screamer off the scale and carried it back into the crate while giving me a baleful look. They all weighed between 3 1/2 and 4 1/4 ounces, which is about average. They all look to be right around the same size – none of them particularly large or small, though of course that might change in the future.

Do you SEE those stripey little legs?!

The two buff kittens appear to be different shades, so hopefully I’ll be able to tell them apart. One of the orange is completely orange, and the other is orange and white.

The wee Ruth-alike.

Orange face and orange butt (and buff butt too, for that matter.)

Baby tuxie! (Paging Bonnie and Marc!)

Dark tabby.

Hello, little one.

Such a good mama.

So like I said, we’ll get ’em looked over this weekend to see what we’ve got for girls and boys, and get pictures of each of their faces so that we can name and officially introduce them on Monday. There will be posts on Saturday AND Sunday, so be there or be square (or, y’know, just be aware on Monday that there were posts over the weekend!)


And, of course, babies’ first video. Belly up to the milk bar, kids!

YouTube link.


Oh, Suggie. It is quite the rough life you’ve got going on there, isn’t it?

Doesn’t he have beautiful eyes?

Yep. It’s a rough, rough life.


2014: Permanent Resident Throwback Thursday.
2013: Arnold is becoming quite the fluffmuffin.
2012: “You’re not touching my babies, are you? I KEEL YOU.”
2011: No entry.
2010: No entry.
2009: Someone said last week that Beulah looks like she’s in a space ship when she sits in the middle of the ball-track toy. She certainly does!
2008: No entry.
2007: “Oh, I’m not getting involved in this one!”
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.



4-3-15 Lucy’s Birth Story — 28 Comments

  1. I think I about died 5 times while reading this post. The little wrinkly faces, mohawk hair cuts, boopable noses and skinny-minny legs… Wow Lucy, you have your work cut out for you, but you are oh so lucky! Those are some sweet little babies you have there.

    Little screamer, lol!

  2. Awww… so looking forward to watching these babies grow!!! Momma looks wonderful – despite birthin’ those babies. Is it safe to say she’s been down this road before and is an experienced momma? I was sooo hoping for a tuxie and a ginger tabby (and a tortie, but 2 out of 3 ain’t bad.. see what I did there? a tribute to Meatloaf bwah hah haha I CRACK myself up!) Just so glad momma and kits are healthy! Thank you Robyn for sharing… keep those instagram pics coming!!!!! Sidenote.. (also music themed) there was a song by Kenny Rogers… back in my tiny days and not knowin’ what was what, and loving to sing .. on key, off key, did NOT matter (still doesn’t) I used to sing (at the top of my lungs)”You picked a fine time to leave me Lucille….. “Four Hundred children and a crop in the field .. correct lyrics were Four HUNGRY children… childhood confusion or clairvoyance??? Sorry – commenting on this blog is much cheaper than therapy and far more introspective! 🙂 Happy Easter Weekend!

    • I have a friend that always sang it “Four Hundred children and a crop in the field”. He actually thought those were the words. LOL

      Beautiful babies! That is what I love about calicos (calitabbies count) is that they can have any color kitten with any pattern. They are the mixture of the entire color gene pool! 🙂

  3. Eeee! Is that dark tabby gonna be one of those oh-so-pretty smoke tabbies?

  4. Beautiful Lucy and babies!! She looks like such a patient, loving mama…. Thanks for the video, love it!!! Will be so much fun watching these babies grow and their beautiful colorings become more visible!

  5. I am sure Lucy loves these kittens OUTSIDE of her, more than inside of her. She had her own style of pregnancy, and no doubt it will continue into mamahood. Beautiful basbies – and a variety pack, yet! So looking forward to watching them grow!

    Happy Passover, Easter, and Almost Spring weekend, everyone!

  6. Lucille Ball air kneading while nursing her babies: priceless! Also, that color definitely suits Suggie.

  7. Oh the little bitty faces!!! And the little buff face peeking out between mama’s paws! *thunk*

  8. We rescued a dog that had at one point had a litter. When we were coming up with names I thought well Robin always gives her mama cats good strong short names. How about Lucy? So our dog is Lucy! Love it. Sweet babies

  9. I think that in about three months it will be time for you and Fred to take a trip out west and bring along a little passenger…omg, I am IN LOVE! Beautiful pictures, Robyn.

  10. I’m SURE I’ve never said this before, but THESE ARE THE MOST BEAUTIFUL KITTEHS EVER.

  11. Love the name and the video! So cute.

    And wow, what an easy and fast birth. I always think about Khaleesi’s birth story when one of your mamas gives birth, and (I’m really sorry about this) it always makes me giggle a little. Poor confused girl. And you locked in the foster room with no help. I’m sure I would have freaked out so hard. Thank goodness she turned out to be an awesome mama–and it looks like Lucy is well on her way to being the same!

  12. I am so in love with Lucy. I truly wish I could drive down (in a couple months of course!) and get her. Hurrah on the babies being easy and healthy, I hope they all do ok!! She had a gorgeous litter, they are all gonna be SO CUTE!! So if her name is lucille ball, will the theme be lucy in real life? You’d get a Desi and a Lucie and a Desi Jr (hmm those are all sort of… well… THE SAME) or are you going with Lucy on tv? that would get you an Ethel, Fred, Ricky, Little Ricky, McGillicuddy, somebody could be Ricardo…hm…. i can’t wait to watch these babies grow up. gorgeous litter. sigh. i’m jealous.

  13. Growing up, we had a sweet little gray tortoiseshell we started to call her Littlebit. We eventually called her L.B. Since you’ve had a Lucy and Lucille…

    Those orange tabbies look like they have classic tabby swirl markings. They are so adorable.

  14. Oh oh oh! I don’t pick favorites, but lord a mercy, the “such a good mama” picture with the little buff baby being “hugged”….

  15. Aww, poor Mamma Lu still not able to put that leg down. Seriously though these pics are making MY uterus hurt. <3 <3 <3

    • Making your uterus hurt in the sense of “OMG I want a baby!” or “OMG that looks so uncomfortable!”?

      • Maybe a bit of both lol. I barely handled my two 4 years apart! 😀 Maybe I should have said “They’re so cute it’s like a punch to the gut!” Although I’m not sure that’s any better of a selling point than making my uterus hurt 😀

  16. I think bigger litters with a variety of kitten flavors is a pretty good indication of multiple daddy cats. Poor Miss Lu, I can’t imagine having all those fat babies taking up all my internal spaces. It’s a good thing she can take deep breaths again- she’ll probably need a few.

    • With a calitabby, you can get just about anything. The one that says “multiple fathers” to me is if some end up floofy and some end up sleek, or they don’t all have the same facial proportions.

  17. That little tuxie looks more like a little mole to me right now. Those little pink paws are just killer.

    Love the press on MSN, for you and for Challengers House. You’re bad, you’re nationwide.

  18. Seriously, is there anything sweeter than the blissful symbiosis of mama kitty and nursing babies?

    And, let’s just add, thanks to Challenger’s House and Robyn, another mama kitty who gets to birth and raise her babies safe, warm, loved, and fed.

  19. The best of birth stories, drama-free, she looks so content. And she never has to go through it again, PLUS she has an awesome Mom & Dad taking care of her and her wee ones. LOVE it, Robyn!

  20. Awww, Lucy and the babies are so sweet!

    And I am so happy about the name, as I lost my own (very senior) Lucy 2 months ago. I just know she would be so proud!

  21. “My eyes is up here, lady.” LOL.. I also think she gave birth to prevent more photos.. (little did she know)

    Considering how envious I am of you, I’m a wee bit tickled you are envious of something of me.. even if it is just a couch..