Monday, December 14, 2009

O Christmas Wreath, O Christmas Wreath

It's important to know one's limitations. Accept them and make the most of the situation.

So true.

So annoying.

I have decided not to put up a tree this year. There will still be one on my son's side of the house so I can get my tree fix there. I think this is only the second time in my adult life that I haven't had a Christmas tree. My back is so close to being out and there are other things to do.

Plus Siren is relentless. He stalks it, hides under it, climbs it, eats it, licks it, scratches it ...

The first day it's up he plays hard to get. He stares it down. Once he is certain it won't fight back all bets are off.

I have to shake the water spritzer at him continuously just to make him back off. If I want him to stay away for at least 15 minutes I have to spray him with the water and I always feel bad about that.

If I fall asleep there's no telling what I'll awaken to. Last year I found him on top of the tree doing unspeakable things to the angel.

When I go out I have to close the living room door. This causes the aerodynamic flow of our half assed heating duct system to go out of whack. The living room temperature rises while the other rooms cool. A low forms in the hallway and a freakin' Nor'easter develops in the bedroom. It takes hours to stabilize the house and even longer to stabilize me.

It just ain't gonna happen this year. My last nerve already has too much hanging on it.

Since the lights are my favorite part I got a wreath. When it first went on the door Siren sat beneath it and wailed. Some ancient feline ritual? Now comfortable with it he launches himself at it. Remember when Letterman used to wear the Velcro suit and throw himself at the Velcro wall? Like that.

Hope's official holiday photo was released today ...

I'm off to light the wreath.



Jeff B said...

If you get photos of the psycho cats with the wreath do post them. The mental picture of them already has me in stitches!

Jacob said...

That is one interesting feline you have. Sheesh! You could write a book.

Love the photo of Hope!

~Just me again~ said...

LOL @ cats... I only have to worry about my dog's tail wagging.

What a lil cutie pie she is.

Mrs. C said...

Hope is so sweet in that little outfit!! Happy Chanukah to you. I've got to admit a little jealousy there that you have a holiday that is authentically *Jewish*. I'm getting myself torn up by fellow Christians saying that we need to keep the CHRIST in CHRISTmas. Ughhhhh. I keep telling them about Pilgrims not celebrating (and they were sorta Christian) and how NO, it's not X'ing baby Jesus out to write Xmas. I'm sure that at Easter these same friends will think egg hiding is a Christian tradition that we need to keep these traditions pure and un-pagan-y. :p

Siiiiigh. So much for the season of peace LOL, though some of these folks are just really sweet people that got too many AFA e-alerts in their mailboxes this season...

Queen-Size funny bone said...

How darling Hope is. I put a 2 ft. tree up and a wreath on the door which the cat jumps and swings on. then we know fhe wants to come in

Cherie said...

There's a wildness to those cats that have "lived on the streets" that never quite goes away. (Over and above the "normal" wildness of a cat.) I've had a couple of them myself. (But I never felt guilty about squirting them with the water bottle. They always earned it. LOL) I'm sorry that you won't get your tree this year. Maybe by next year they'll invent one with a forcefield that keep the angel safe from Siren's obscene ways. (You know I just realized you didn't say that the unspeakable acts were "obscene". Must just be the way my mind works. LOL) But I'm with Jeff. If you get a pic of Siren spread eagle going after the wreath, I want to see it. :)

Cherie said...

P.S. Hope's picture is gorgeous! :)

Ron said...

First, this killed me...

Last year I found him on top of the tree doing unspeakable things to the angel.


You are SOOOOOO funny!

Second, I LOVE the wreath!! It's simple, tasteful, and says Merry Christmas perfectly!! And I'm so glad you didn't use BLINKING lights - I freakin' HATE blinking lights - they drive me insane!

This post brought back so many memories for me when I had my cats and how they would act with a Christmas tree - BONKERS! To them, it's like a big playground, isn't it?

I'm not doing a tree either. However, I never do because my place is very small. Besides, being in retail I see Christmas decorations all day long, so it's kinda nice to come home and chill.

Ok...and can I just tell you how much I LOVE the photo of Hope??'s so precious!! LOVE the bow!!!

eeeeeee...I just wanna squeeze her, she's so cute!!!

I think she's gonna be a model when she grows up.

Work that runway, Hope!

Thanks for sharing, dear lady!

Such a wonderful post!

X to you, Hope, Mia, and of course....SIREN!!!!

Hilary said...

Cats are nuts.. no surprises there.

And no surprises that Hope is a little doll. :)

Jay said...

Maybe set up one of those motion detector things that sets off sprinklers if anything comes close to the tree? You know, like people do to keep deer out of their backyards? LOL ;-)

I'm sure the angel will thank you for saving her from the cat.

Jay Simser said...

I love Hope's picture. - You are so fortunate to have Hope in your life, Thank you for putting her in ours also. Give her a hugh from Bailey, Miles and me..(Cassie doesn't hug - as you know cats are like that)

Sylvia K said...

Siren is such a hoot! Don't blame you for not having a tree this year, I haven't had one since my kids grew up and my son and I haven't had one the three years I've been in Seattle. But we still have a great Christmas. We did get carried away this year and put up a big wreath! Hope is so adorable, that's the joy of Christmas, right there!!

Have a great week and I do hope your back is better soon! That's not fun and I know first hand!


Dianne said...

jeff - I have had the camera right beside me for days now, Siren is just too fast but I'll keep trying.

jacob - I actually started writing a book about Siren when he first came here - it took so long to calm him and make him feel safe. The safe part worked, not so much the calm ;)

just me - that reminds me - can't have candles cause of the tails :)

mrs c - I have combined Chanukah and Christmas for as long as I can remember. I am not much for the religious aspects of either holiday. I light the menorah for Nana and I celebrate Christmas with the rest of the family. Hopefully when Hope is older she will be interested in learning about Nana's traditions, Jeffrey never was and I don't push.
The AFA needs to calm the "F" down. I'm pretty sure Jesus would not have liked them :)

queen size funny - I love the image of the cat using the wreath as a door bell ;)

cherie - there is a wildness in Siren, plus he's just plain insane
Hope sends hugs

ron - we were just saying Hope would be a model, she loves cameras. The photo studio told my DIL she was the easiest baby they had dealt with all season. She sends you big hugs, and so do I. Siren is full of disdain.

hilary - I think I'm the crazy one, I keep expecting Siren to behave differently
Hope sends hugs

jay - I LOVE your idea!!!! Every time I read your comment I laugh some more. With my luck the sprinklers would bring thirsty deer into my living room ;)

jay s - ahhhh the jays in my life, I love them
hugs to all, including Cassie who I know hates them
your post about no tree reminded me to post about the wreath
I should have said thanks but I'm a bitch ;)

sylvia - I did way too much Hope twirling and dancing and my back just went Oy!
she's 19 pounds now and that's not the same as a newborn
Siren is indeed a hoot :)

Linda said...

I'm so sorry to hear that your back is giving you problems. Sadly, I know the feeling oh so well and could barely move Saturday morning after spending most of Friday cleaning and getting ready for the party here Friday night. What was I thinking? I can't do that sort of stuff anymore! Getting old truly sucks ...

I was sitting here laughing my stupid head off of the image of Siren throwing himself at the wreath on the door like Letterman and the Velcro suit! It would be even funnier if he stuck and you could get a picture!

Hope is absolutely the cutest baby I have seen in a very, very long time - what a doll she is!! A real Christmas cutie!

Melli said...

I was trying to get out of putting up a tree this year -- but I can't even use the cats for an excuse! OUR cats are CALMED by the tree and just want to lay quietly under it and soak up the *glow*.... They've never messed with it at all.

HOPE's outfit is ALMOST as cute as she is! And that BOW! LOL! It's ALMOST as BIG as she is! hehehe... that is just a darling photo!

Volly said...


I think you can create holiday spirit in your home without a single light, decoration, or tree -- I suspect it goes on year 'round. Save your back (my yard is in terribly neglected shape for the same reason), and save your poor kitty's last little nerve. Give her a hug and tell her how much you appreciate her efforts to save you from the Evil Circle God that lurks at your front door.

Great post,

Matt-Man said...

Cats are so damn hip. Cheers Di!!

bobbie said...

Just look at that child smile!

I love your wreath and its lights. Very nice idea. I haven't had a tree for a few years now. I dearly love the rite of trimming it and the nostalgia of the ornaments, but when you can't do it, you just can't do it. This year I sent Isaac some of my Santa ornaments.

Doc said...

My son has been wreaking havoc on our tree.. it will be a miracle if all the ornaments survive!

and that is a beautiful picture of a precious angel!

Lu' said...

I have a terror in the house and her name is Angelina. She came to us in 2003. With her there will be no tree no big tree anyway never has been one. I could just tell it would be wrong. I do sometimes put up a two footer on the entertainment center if all roads leading to it are blocked. I haven't had a full size tree but once since I've been married. It is bad enough dealing with the cats but dealing with hubs dealing with the cats is worse yet. I do without the tree so I don't have to yell at my girls or spray them with water because like you I feel badly about it. I loved this post it felt like home :) For me it is about the lights too.

Anonymous said...

You had me in shrieks of laughter - too funny. You have such a wonderful way of telling a story. My Sylvester has his insane Sirenesque moments too, but thankfully not too often.

Love the photo of Hope on the Holiday card and she does look like she loves the camera and all the attention!

Dianne said...

linda - we both tend to do too much don't we
we have to stop that :)
Hope sends big hugs

melli - calm cats!! wow! :)
my son hates the bow and insisted on another photo without it LOL
I was asked for my opinion and said that Hope is gorgeous no matter what she wears
I learn quickly ;)

volly - you are absolutely right, thank you :)

matt man - they are!!

bobbie - I love that you sent Isaac some of the ornaments, wonderful idea

doc - it gets hard when they're walking, I keep telling my son that - he can hardly wait til Hope is running around :)
Hope sends hugs to Patrick

lu' - I love that this post felt like home, thank you!!!

rob - shrieks of laughter are good
Sirenesque is a great word

Daryl said...

Oh she is so adorable, so grown up looking .. poo poo poo (channeling my mother there)

Reb said...

You tell such good tales! Sibu loves fir trees, he sniffs and rubs against them, but hasn't tried climbing them. He will bat at decorations but that is about it, usually he just chills under the tree like another present.

Love your wreath and the photo of Hope is adorable.

Sparkling Red said...

Some cats just don't know when to quit. I remember my ex's cat Shadow, may he (the cat) rest in peace. The living room door had to stay closed in December for similar reasons, including Shadow's taste for wrapping accessories. One time he ate curling ribbon and it went all the way through. He had an extra, curly "tail" for a while there. Yuck!

Akelamalu said...

The only time we didn't put a tree up was in 1999 when we were going away for Christmas and New Year and it felt very strange indeed!

Hope's holiday photo is just beautiful!

Linda Reeder said...

With that kind of a domino effect, I can see why you are foregoing the tree! Love the wreath, and Hope's photo!

Robin said...

Very pretty wreath. I had to admit that I snickered at the idea of your cat doing unmentionable things to the angel.

CrystalChick said...

Hope is wonderful and beautiful, oh I know how you must be enjoying her.
I didn't get out as many festive things as I normally do (altho I did manage to put ornaments on 2 trees) and as of right now we're not having our annual Christmastime open house. I have a few limits myself and have just decided to try and enjoy the season without stressing. It only makes things worse physically, right?! We have some visiting to do and some will visit us, but I'm not pushing it this year.
The wreath is beautiful!

Cloudia said...

Happy holidays!

Aloha, Friend

Comfort Spiral

Dianne said...

daryl - sometimes I say "poo poo poo" to Hope in a whisper, for you - and your Mom :)

reb - Sibu is a civilized cat ;)

sparkling - one of my past sweeties, JR, was big on eating ribbon and string
the "venting" of these articles was not pretty

akelamalu - it's been so much calmer that I'm OK with it
Hope sends hugs

linda r - I'm learning to be easier on myself

robin - it was snicker worthy, trust me ;)

crystalchick - 2 trees!! wow :)
I'm glad you're enjoying as well

cloudia - thanks :)

Jeni said...

Oh yes, Dianne! I chuckled the whole way through this piece -until I got to Hope's Christmas pic and that is, well, just plain gorgeous!
But seriously, I can relate to the issues you described -well all but the "unspeakable things" to the angel maybe. In the past our cats -various ones -have tried to climb the tree but the kittens this year didn't delve into that. Instead, they like to bat at ornaments, knock them to the floor and then, whoever sees an ornament on the floor has the task of finding a bit of a branch a bit higher up so now, the top half of the tree is pretty well-loaded! And they like to hide under the tree so they can do a surprise attack then on Sammy, the mutt we acquired last month. After tomorrow, we will be down to 1 dog, 2 grown cats, 1 kitten and 3 bunnies (in the basement). One kitten, the grey calico female, moves out to her new home tomorrow a.m. when my son and I will drive 45 miles to meet up with the future grandmother to that kitten. We may become a 3-cat family unless Mandy can find someone who would like to take Nina, cause she refuses to be civilized with Sammy whereas the other cat and the kittens all are willing to play cat and dog games with him but Nina just hisses at him and scares the living daylights out of the poor mutt!
God Jul, Dianne -to you and yours and isn't it just wonderful that you also now have Hope!

CG said...

The wreath is lovely and Hope looks so beautiful.
Our cats largely leave the tree alone but I did find Basil crunching on some lights recently...luckily they were an old set and not plugged in1

fermicat said...

We put up our tree on the back porch, with lights but no ornaments. We do this to keep it away from the cats, but they still managed to find it and climb up inside and bend all the middle branches down. Bad cats!

Raven said...

I'm such a bad visitor these days. Your wreath is beautiful and your granddaughter's official photo is wonderful! She's the joy as well as Hope. I gave up on trees a while back. I have a tiny fate tree but I can't find it, though I did find the old broken Charlie Brown one that doesn't light up any more. Seems like it's going to be that kind of a season.

Enjoy your beautiful wreath. I'm glad you have a tree to enjoy without cat battles.