Ellie is a Cat

I don’t remember when it all started. But for at least the last 18 months, Ellie has expressed her love for cats. We aren’t a cat family. At all. I mean, we don’t have any pets. But if we did, it’d be a dog. And my wife would make me sleep outside with it. I’m not ready for that, yet. So we don’t have pets.

If Ellie had her way, we’d have a cat. I asked her how many cats she wants when she moves in to her own place, and she said four – two orange, one white, one black.


Lately, she’s exhibited more and more cat-like behavior. It’s so incredibly obvious that she was a cat in an earlier life, or the fertility clinic spilled a drop of cat DNA in the Petri dish during the in vitro process. Here’s what I’m talking about.

She climbs everything: Jax wasn’t very daring, and Gray is a bull in a China closet, so we’re not used to this. Ellie is strong and agile with little fear. At 19 months she climbed stacks of hay to reach the top when we were at the pumpkin patch. A couple of months ago I went in to check on her and Gray playing in their room. Their toddler beds make an L shape if you turn that L to the right 45 degrees. She was standing where the two beds touch, as if she was Jimmy Superfly Snuka from the old WWF days. And then jumped, just like Snuka, on to the bed.

Lays like a cat: She likes to perch herself on the back pillow of the couch and lay on her side. Or, she’ll get on your lap, roll over on to her back and stretch out, as if she wants her belly rubbed.

And then she does stuff like this…

elliecat1 elliecat2

Claws: Just the other day Ellie and Gray were play fighting. Ellie, who only knows 0 or 100 percent (there’s no in between) scratched his face with both hands. It left marks.

She loves tuna: Gray won’t even try the stuff, but Ellie will eat it straight from the can. When I’m prepping a sandwich, she comes over for a bite. No mayo. Just straight tuna. And she asks for it often.

She hisses: When she’s mad she sometimes hisses. Seriously.

On a Saturday about three weeks ago Ellie hit for the cycle with cat-like behavior. I sat on the couch and she laid on my lap and rolled around, stretched out. A little later she found a small ball my wife had out for a craft/project she was working on. It’s smaller than a quarter, light, but not felt. I have no idea what the material is. She was patting it around in her paws, I mean hands, back and forth. LIKE A FUCKING CAT! My wife and I laughed. The cat thing has been an ongoing observance for us, but this ball thing is new.

My mother-in-law was over, and she brought Ellie a Christmas charm bracelet (nothing expensive, 3-year-old appropriate). So later, on this same Saturday, we heard jingling. A few seconds later Ellie came running in to the living room where we were hanging out. She may as well be wearing a collar with a bell on it. As some cats do.

And to wrap it up, all on this same day, mind you, she asked for tuna for lunch and hissed at her brother over a toy. I made a joke about having a tongue like sand paper. And to be honest, I haven’t touched it, so it COULD exist, right?

I haven’t heard her purr yet. But I’m sure it’s in her. I haven’t tried petting under her chin yet.


Ice Cream, Woody and Consignment – How Was Your Weekend?


I’m notorious for falling asleep while driving. I’ve caused two rear-end accidents as a result of nodding off. Coincidentally, insane traffic on the 261 toll road in Orange County helped me ram both vehicles at about the same spot – just beyond the sensor at the peak of the hill if you know the area. The last occurrence was about eight years ago.

My commute home Friday almost snapped that streak. Fortunately I opened my eyes soon enough to slam on my brakes just before impacting that large pick-up truck. F me.

My wife picked some things up at the store after the twins went to bed and surprised me with Baskin Robbins. She got me baseball nut. It’s one of those quirky things I’ve liked since I was a kid. It’s seasonal for the baseball season, or at least used to be, with vanilla ice cream, cashews and a black raspberry ribbon. And it’s fanfuckingtastic.

Baskin Robbins' Baseball Nut.

Baskin Robbins’ Baseball Nut.


T-ball class seems less and less of an adventure every week. Gray and Ellie’s attention is slowly improving (I emphasize the slow). But we’re used to Jax. He didn’t care about water breaks. He wasn’t running away from me in the outfield. And he knew where first base was.

Gray’s been begging to watch “Buzz and Woody” for a bit, so I told him when it got dark we could watch Toy Story 3 as the wife worked. He and Ellie grabbed their Woody and Jessie dolls and settled on the couch for movie night. I pecked away on the iPad nearby and joined them for the last ten minutes. And cried like a baby.

I last saw the film in the theater when it was released in the summer of 2010. My wife and I took Jax as he was obsessed with Toy Story at the time. He sat on my lap and didn’t budge the entire time. He was in awe. I bawled my eyes out then, too, but this was different. When Andy dropped his box of toys off at Bonnie’s house the whole thing thing reminded me of Jax. How he used to want “Andy” written on the bottom of his cowboy boots. It reminded me of his own super imagination.

And when Bonnie and her mom go inside the house and the toys sit up to watch Andy drive off to college, it symbolized Jax leaving this earth. Leaving my world. The achy heart I buried clawed itself out of the ground like a Friday the 13th movie, pried my mouth open, jumped inside and was stuck in my throat.

Ellie was sitting against my stomach and looked up and back at me.

“Daddy sad?” she asked. She’s used to this. She’s used to looking at sadness. I confirmed and she turned back to the TV to watch the credits.

Woody and friends watch Andy drive off to college.

Woody and friends watch Andy drive off to college.


The twins and I left my wife alone to sleep for a few hours. We went to church and discovered the closing date will be May 12. Afterwards I made the mistake of letting them walk (while holding my hand) in Target to pick up some packing tape. Holy crap was that a bad idea. Ellie turned into a 14-year-old and refused to hold my hand and Gray at one point shrilled in my ear because I picked him up. There was mass chaos.

After finally returning home and getting them to nap, I wrote my first post for Bugs & Cranks, which you can find here.

After the wife woke up we drove out to Huntington Beach to drop off items we’re selling at the Urban Kids Consignment sale next weekend. If you or a friend are looking for good deals on used clothes, toys or other accessories for children, you should hit it up. I can’t speak for all of the items, but what we’re selling is in great condition.

When we left, Ellie kept yelling at me from her car seat for a restaurant. That’s just kind of how she communicates now. She’ll yell. It’s super fun. We landed at Red Lobster. Toward the end of our meal I felt a strong tap on my left shoulder. I turned around to find an elderly woman, roughly 80, right in my face.

“You better watch out for that one,” she said. My mind scrambled. The hell is she talking about? “He’s been flirting with me the whole time.”

It’s Gray. Okay, phew. No one’s in trouble.

“He definitely likes the ladies,” I replied with an uncomfortable grin.

At home, my wife asked Gray about girls at the restaurant. He muttered “pretty”. I had no idea he knew that word. Then I thought of that elderly woman. Gray likes cougars. Beware, ladies.