Caturday Intermew with Renegade Parenting Expert, Heather Shumaker!

Standard

Happy Caturday!!

Today I’m so purry to share my intermew with Heather Shumaker, Renegade Parenting Expert, about her book, It’s OK to Go Up the Slide: Renegade Rules for Raising Confident and Creative Kids.

While the book is full of great tips for raising mini-hoomans, you can also learn a lot about raising confident and creative kitties!

Enjoy!

It's OK to Go Up the Slide book cover

amazon.com

Hazel: Meows, Heather! Thanks for chatting with me today! What got you interested in writing?

Heather: I’ve been writing and wanting to be a writer since I was four. It’s a lifelong love.

Hazel: What is renegade parenting?

Heather: Renegade parenting means looking at things differently, and questioning standard parenting “truths” we take for granted. For example, “don’t talk to strangers” “share your toys” and “do your homework.” It’s renegade because it goes against the commonly accepted culture, but really renegade parenting is all about “Good, Basic, Universal Child Development Principles That Work.” It’s all backed up in research and is based on a foundation of respect for young children.  Kids have very different needs from adults, and adults don’t always understand that.

Hazel: Where did you get the idea to write about renegade parenting?

Heather: The inspiration came from an unorthodox preschool I attended as a child. My mother also taught there for 40 years. The school helps kids cope with their big feelings and welcomes their play – even rough-and-tumble play like giving kids boxing gloves and letting them get physical. This school, the School for Young Children, is a place where kids feel respected and learn skills that are essential to life: conflict mediation and expressing feelings appropriately.

Hazel: How might renegade parenting be applied to kitties? (If you have kitties or pets this would be a good place to chat about them!)

Heather: I think kitties would like my chapters on rough-and-tumble play.  Some people call it puppy play, but you might prefer “kitty play.”

Hazel: I do!

funny-cats-fighting-box

themetapicture.com

Heather: All social and intelligent mammals do it when they’re young – playful wrestling and rolling around.  The more social and intelligent the species, the more they do it. It’s very good for the brain and great for social relationships – developing trust, impulse control, flexibility in thinking, and friendships. Unfortunately, many adult humans forget that and try to stop physical play between kids: “get your hands off each other!”

Hazel: Right! Or paws! What in your eyes is the biggest problem parents don’t know they have?

Heather: Parents don’t realize how afraid they are. This fear causes them to stunt children’s healthy development in so many ways. Fear drives homework assignments in kindergarten. Fear drives loss of recess. Fear keeps kids from playing outside and interacting with the world, taking healthy risks, even experiencing basic emotions like sadness, anger and jealousy. Kids have a lot to learn in the early years, and they learn life best through play and experience.

Hazel: How do you strike a balance between having kids learn on their own and giving them a structure to learn from others?

Heather: For young kids (up to age 8) most learning is done through play. True play has to be child-led and child-initiated. That’s how children process the world. Very little structured learning is needed in these early years, since young children learn through modeling (how to use a fork, say hello, hold a book). In fact, many lessons we try to teach kids don’t work at young ages. For example, we drill the calendar in preschool classrooms despite the fact that human development typically doesn’t develop the capacity to understand long periods of time until age 7. It’s a waste of their time. Kids are desperate for unstructured time when they can think their own thoughts and follow their own play ideas.

Hazel: What are you working on next?

Heather: I’m working on something different.  A ghost story adventure for 8-12 year-olds!

Hazel: Sounds pawesome! Can’t wait to read it! Thanks, Heather!!

wgnradio.com

And thank YOU reader for reading!!

Headbonks!

Hazel

Advertisements

Caturday Intermew with Poptart!

Standard

Happy Caturday, Everypawdy!

Well, not quite Caturday! But our guest today has an auction that ends tomorrow, March 7th, so I wanted to share our stimulating chat today so you can get a chance to bid if you like!

Meet Poptart!

Hazel: Hi Poptart! What inspired that cute name of yours?

Poptart: Oh the little humans in the house! At first my name was J. Lo when I was at the shelter and that was changed very fast mol.

Hazel: Mol!! J. Lo is an excellent name for a kitty. How did you find your forever home?

Poptart: My people really wanted a kitty to help one of the little humans cope with the loss of Mama who went to the Rainbow Bridge. She would sleep with the little boy human and he was so very sad so they saw me and I just insisted they pick me and for the longest time I slept wif him and helped him heal from his sadness.

Hazel: Aww, that’s so sweet, I did a lot of healing for my humans too. What’s a funny cat thing you do?

Poptart: I used to play hockey with my mousie toys but now I think my funny is how I run down the hall when mommy gets ready to feed me my special food and I meow and run at the same time and it sounds like me ow ow ow ow ow and then before she puts the food down I meow and roll back and forth on my back till she is done putting it down for me!

Hazel: Haha you’re an athletic kitty! You’re also in Dancing with the Stars, Kittyland Edition! What kind of dance do you like?

Poptart: I like to dance to all sorts of music actually! But our last song, “A Thousand Years,” by Christina Perri, was chosen because of my love for Bob and I thought it was just the purrfect song for us!

Hazel: Which charity are you dancing for?

Poptart: The charity is Forgotten Felines of Maine and their mission is this:

Forgotten Felines of Maine is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation dedicated to:

  • Educating the public about free-roaming cats by providing literature and advice on caring for feral, stray, homeless and abandoned cats.
  • Assisting in humanely reducing cat overpopulation with Trap, Neuter, Return (TNR) programs.
  • Providing access to spay/neuter services and helping to place adoptable cats in loving homes.

Hazel: You also have an auction going on right meow, which ends March 7th. Can you tell me more about that?

Poptart: The auction page is for all paws in need, not just kitties, and it is to help with medical bills. We have a private account that is specific for the auctions. I have lots going on this time. This auction is for ME this time to help defray the cost of my bills because I had to have all my teeth removed due to my stomatitis. We have custom painted glasses from Chunkie Crafts and a blanket from Prince Pan Pan and one from Mothwing and kitty toys from Hallman Crafts I really do not want to leave anyone out. Mew can visit the page it is called Poptart Power of the Paw Auctions for those in need.

Hazel: What advice do you have for bright young kitties hoping to make a difference?

Poptart: Please be kind to one another first and foremost! Also if you think there is something wrong, please check it out right away! Also my rule of thumb is this Every Paw Matters!

Hazel: If you could say only one thing to a potential new or existing friend, what would you like them to know?

Poptart: I am an equal opportunity kitty! Ebbery animal or eben humans can come to my page! I am a Happy Kitty just trying to spread the love and also help out any way that I can.

Hazel: Thanks Poptart!

And thank YOU readers for reading!

Sandpaper kisses,

Hazel

Birthday Intermew with Scratchz Padz!

Standard

Happy Almost Caturday, Furriends!

Today we have a very special intermew from Edward David Alexander! You may know him as Scratchz Padz, he makes all those beautiful RIP images we see when one of our kitty friends crosses the Rainbow Bridge, including this recent homage to the late Sir Houdini.

Sir Houdini

You can check out his work on his many pages here, and be sure to wish him a Happy Birthday! He’s celebrating his 54th!

Hazel: You’re the artist behind all those beautiful RIP signs we see on Facebook! How did you get started?

EDA: I got my start in pro art as a young man, so before I was even 18, back in the mid 1970’s as a pro tattooist. How I started on the Facebook RIPs…well I was friends with the old RIP maker before he passed, and the first online RIP I did ever make and post was for brother Paul N when he passed. I didn’t know that at the time, brother Paul was teaching me to take his place.

Hazel: Do you have kitties of your own? What are their names, and what are they like?

EDA: Yes, I have currently 3 gal kitties & they do have their own Facebook pages: Sweety & Cat Friends of CCC and Ginny & MoMo (hyperlinked above).

Hazel: What have you learned from helping so many people heal from their loss?

EDA: Oh yeah, ask the tough stuff! Well, to be totally honest, I am not sure what I have learned but this: that few words are best, to have a firm hand and strong heart, and to use my empathic powers.

Hazel: You were told in 2011 you only had 2-15 months left, how has that changed your perspective, and what kept you going?

EDA: You have to do what you love and love what you do.

Hazel: What would you say to humans who are still recovering from a pet loss?

EDA: There are always the basic same stages to this: first is shock, then sadness, then emptiness…there is no time limit to these as each person is different and heals differently.

Hazel: Who’s waiting for you at the Rainbow Bridge?

EDA: I am sure every cat I have ever had is there waiting. After 54 of me loving and having cats, the list is to long to put here, but all cats go to the Rainbow Bridge or heaven to wait for us.

Hazel: What would you like future readers to know about you and your work?

EDA: It has been a 50+ year dream of mine to share and give to world my art work. It is the best and last gift I have to give to the world. Thank you, Hazel Fluffypants, for choosing this human to interview, and I hope I did well answering! 🙂

Thanks Scratchz! And Happy Birthday!!

A cordial purr,

Hazel Fluffypants

August Intermew Blitz with Sophia the Three Legged Kitty!

Standard

Day 6 of my August Intermew Blitz! Meet Sophia the Three Legged Kitty!

Advice?

Just to be very sweet and sincere! Always be kind. Appreciate and love your fans!

Inspiration?

Homer the blind cat! He was a very strong kitty that overcame being blind and lived a normal, happy life!! The momma also loved his book!

Entertainment?

For books I’d say Homer’s Odyssey (I love Homer the Blind cat!!). I also love horror movies. I like to sit next to the momma and daddy and watch scary movies! As for TV, I watch whatever the momma likes, like the Walking Dead and Once Upon a Time!

Politics?

I think the rise of [cat power] is great!! I think more kitties will get homes! Two of my sisters and I were strays at one point so hopefully the rise in power will make people want to adopt more!!

Dream Date?

Hmm… Maybe Tara the cat. Kitty food or chicken! Preferably at my house! I don’t like to leave my house.

Mistakes?

Do NOT trust cars!! I trusted cars once and I lost my leggie! They are evil!!!! The momma keeps telling me that they aren’t all evil but I don’t believe her!

Conclusion?

Hm…I would say just that I love all of my followers!!!! (Heart Symbol)

Thanks, Sophia!

August Intermew Blitz with Zamboni the Cat!

Standard

Day 4 of my August Intermew Blitz! Meet Zamboni the Cat!

Advice?

On da web, wut yew do iz start visiting other pages cuz dem iz awsum and intraduce yerself. Dem iz so kind and shares da page BUT yew got to amember to pay it forward and share too, and share da new frenz as dem comes to yew!! Itz also important to visit yer frenz pages too and acknawledge da comments and posts made on yer page! Be nice and don’t be meen cuz dere iz enuff meenness in da werld already!

Inspiration?

Dere iz so many inspiring furbabies who haz had to overcome different things and we luv so many, so mine can’t pick just one… awl mine frenz iz awsum and has awl inspired mine in one way or another!

Entertainment?

Oh mine luvs anything with da cat in it Dr. Seuss Cat in The Hat is good! Mine luvs watching da aminal shows speshally with da lions and birds in! oh, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof iz da classic Who duzint luv Garfield, and Puss In Boots? Oh and we iz looking forward to Grumpy Cat’s Worst Christmas Ever movie

Politics?

Da rise of feline power… hazint we had it awl along? Mine thought we iz da king of da beests Da werld run by cats… awsum…. no more homeless or hurt furbabies… yes, a vision worth striving fer!

Dream Date?

Mine wud luv to have dinner with… OH…. since da Christmas iz coming… Santa Claws! Oh, wait datz Santa CLAUS! Yes! Tell himz wut mine wants fer da Christmas and to find out fer shur if himz iz real! Mine believes himz iz real but mine will take da pikchers to prove it once and fer awl. Not meet himz at da North Pole tho, cuz datz too cold. Maybe himz and da reindeerz can pick mine up and we dine on da tropical beech sumware… oh yes, dat wud be nice!! No snow, no cold…. uh huh!

Mistakes?

Mine haz made many mistakes and sumtimes mine lerns frum dem! Never climb 40 feet up da tree cuz it iz hard to come down again without da bumps and bruises Never wander off into da snow wen yew haz never seen snow before… yew end up getting stuck down a hill in da snowbank until da hoomins finds yew Never go snooping in da open closet under da stairs cuz da hoomins close da door and not know yew iz in dere Never crawl onto a storage container dat iz close to da shelf cuz yew get stuck and look like da flattened kitty wen da hoomins heerz da meows and finds yew in dat closet Never find da opening in da laundry room and start walking along da rafters cuz den yew find da drop ceiling and think itz stable but itz not and yew fall thru da seeling onto da couch below Never take a turn in dat same opening and walk on top of da duct work cuz it makes da banging sounds and freeks da hoomins out hehehe… okay, dat one wuz da good mistake

Conclusion?

We iz awl different in different ways and itz our differences dat make us yewneek and who we iz.

Thanks, Zamboni!

Caturday Intermew with Cole & Marmalade!

Standard

Happy Caturday!!

This week I’m purry to present you my intermew with handsome kitties and advoCATS, Cole & Marmalade!

Hazel: Hello pretty kitties! Thanks so much for being here! First question, what advice do you have for bright young kittens aspiring to build a web presence?

Cole & Marmalade: Try to think outside the box and be original with pics and videos you post.

Hazel: Who has been your biggest inspiration and why?

Cole & Marmalade: I don’t have one purrson in mind, but there’s so many people out there who work tirelessly to help animals and promote animal welfare and I want to continue to be a part of that.

Hazel: What do you like to read or watch?

Cole & Marmalade: I like discovery channel programs like Gold Rush and stuff like that, my favorite movie is Jaws, I’m a big shark fan, even though the movie didn’t help the reputation of sharks, it’s still been my favorite for 20 years!

Hazel: Haha, sharks are actually pretty snuggly if you get to know them! How do you feel about the rise of feline power, and how do you see that power shaping the world in the future?

Cole & Marmalade: It’s kinda crazy but it’s also very cool, cats are awesome and it’s great to see people being won over by them online and in real life. I just wish people would adopt more instead of buying from breeders.

Hazel: Who would you love to have dinner with? What would you eat and where?

Cole & Marmalade: If one person and alive today …. I’d say Leonardo DiCaprio, we’d eat a British roast beef dinner in a pub in Nottingham (where I’m from:)

Hazel: What are some mistakes you’ve made and what did they teach you?

Cole & Marmalade: I’m a hard worker and always jump into things immediately and get on with stuff without really planning, which would not turn out to be a good idea in most cases, so I learned to slow down and think before doing.

Hazel: If you could say only one thing to a potential new or existing follower, what would you like them to know?

Cole & Marmalade: We make funny, engaging cat videos that not only entertain but help educate to save kitty lives!

Hazel: Awesome! Thanks, kitties!

And thank YOU reader for reading!

Happy Memorial Day!

Hazel

Caturday Intermew with Monster Too Adventurecat!

Standard

Happy Caturday, Furriends!

I am so happy to present my intermew with the beautiful Monster Too!

Hazel: Hi, Monster Too! Thanks for being here! Furst question, what advice do you have for bright young kittens aspiring to build a web presence?

Monster Too: Have you humans take lots of cute pictures and video of you doing things.  Sleeping pictures are always a hit especially if you are showing belly or feets.  For some reason people like kitty toes.  Anything that is shows your quirks or personality is great.  Tell you humans to write for you about things you do and what you thinking in pictures and videos.

People looking at you page love when you telling them stories about things you did in first cat.  Your humans can tell stories about you but the people fall for you and not your humans.  They want you to tell story so tell you humans to write exactly what you tell them.  I tell Ma to write my post on Word and then cut and paste into Facebook.  That way she can work on my post without it get lost in cyberspace and can spell check, check any facts need check first.

I learn that the more I write (Ma my secretary,) the better I get so I just keep write.  It also help to read out loud before publish.  I don’t publish everything I write for posts either.  Sometimes Ma say it too personal or something happen in world that make it not right time to say.  My Ma is still looking for a feline to human translating keyboard on Amazon so I can write my own stories without her help.  They very rare.  I try write on Ma keyboard but somehow it not make any sense to her.

The people looking at web kitties also really love to see adorable kitties with personality and will watch you fall off of table video or you sleeping twitchy dream video over and over and share they with their friends.  If you still a kitten people will ooh and aah over anything you do and make comments like, “Squeeeee!” and “You are so adorable I can’t even stand it!”  That is really good.  If you get comments like that you are on right track.

Hazel: Wow! Tons of great advice, thanks! Who has been your biggest inspiration and why?

Monster Too: Oskar the Blind cat and his brother Klaus Cosmos.

Ma would show me Oskars videos when he a kitten on the YouTube.  That was before he a Facebook cat.  I loved he and would watch he play with toys and all the things he did.  Ma would wait for new videos from he humans, Mick and Bethany, showing the antics he and he big brother Klaus were getting up to.  Then she see on one of the videos that they have a Facebook page.  She start follow them and I love to sit with Ma while she tell me what they doing on Facebook.

Klaus have he “Klaus Cosmos Human Behaviorist” live hour on the Facebook every Tuesday where he answer kitty questions about they humans or things they not understand and he give advice.  That was September last year, 2013.  I love to see what other kitties ask.  We read every week.  Then I tell Ma I want to ask Klaus about my suck on my tail.  It was secret I had.  It feel so calming but I wonder if it was ok.  Ma help me write.  Klaus tell me it ok that I do it because my vet say it ok and we have to do what we have to in order to make life bearable.

Ma learn by follow them about how they represent Oskar and Klaus.  One of they main goals is to help blind cats everywhere.  Then I tell Ma I want my own page and she make it for me.  Here is link to my story and video when I first came out on my page about suck on tail and Klaus advice. https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=610552075704757&set=vb.545467822213183&type=2&theater

Hazel: What do you like to read or watch?

Monster Too: I, as many cats are, am a fan of books, magazines and paper in general.  Home improvement magazines are interesting and mystery or period fiction books are literature I like to peruse.

I love to knock Pa’s stack of “Family Handyman” and “Fine Homebuilding” off of the coffee table and spread them around on the floor.  If you run from other side of room with your claws out for traction you can gain top speed before you get to the pile on the floor.  Then if you leap onto the pile of magazines you can ride one or two of them quite far sliding across the carpet.  It great fun especially if one of your catmates, or better yet, a slobbery beast, is standing unsuspectingly near the pile.  It almost like ambush slip and slide bowling for cats.  Great fun!

When you tired of that you can run at the pile with your head down and paws out at the last second to try and get under them and spread them around.  Ma loves when we do that.  She always comments on how well we can distribute them to every corner of the room.  Paper is more fun than magazines for spreading because it makes noise and is lighter and less work.  Bills are the best.  A pile of bills that are open gets the most reaction from the humans when we spread them around the room.

Hazel: Mol!! Good idea!

Monster Too: I used to open magazines up and look at pictures and chew on pages but I don’t have time for that now that I am so busy with my writing.  Since I a writer cat my favorite office supplies are pencil eraser and magic tape.  Ma have to hide these things from me.  All pencil erasers on Ma desk have been chew off the pencils (by me) and I eat any magic tape I can find.  It almost as good as catnip!

Hazel: Mol, I’ll have to try that! How do you feel about the rise of feline power, and how do you see that power shaping the world in the future?

Monster Too: I think it great that cats rising again in the world.  We were worshiped by humans once.  The Egyptians had it pretty good because they took such good care of cats.  In modern times we rule our homes.  Expanding our influence is natural.  We rule the internet and are taking over retail sales.

It started years ago with commercials.  A cute kid holding a cat or kitten sells!  Cats started really getting popular for selling with Meow Mix.  Ma still can sing whole song.  Morris the Cat was the first famous cat Ma can remember from commercials.  Now we are the go to species for major retailers.  Just look at the IKEA cat commercial.  That is big time!

Humans are drawn to cats and we bringing dogs and other pets up with us.  The Bud commercial where the puppy is saved by the horse is an example of how we cats have broken the glass ceiling for other animals to get top jobs in advertising.   Ma was flipping channels one night and even see a late night talking show on a news channel where they show cat videos and ask viewers to send cat videos to their website.  It part of their strategy to keep they late night viewers and gain more.

I expect that in future if business not have cat for advertise then they not going to be around long.  IKEA thriving and Sears going down.  What Sears need is to get lots of cats and kittens in their “softer side” commercials and quit trying to hard sell people on they credit cards every time you check out.  They already have soft fleecy Lands End clothes now they need to let soft and fluffy cats to sell they.  Then they make it another 129 years!

Hazel: Interesting, I haven’t thought about the history of famous kitties like that before! Who would you love to have dinner with? What would you eat and where?

Monster Too: Wow, that a hard one.  I think it would have to be Hercule Poiriot.  He fastidious just like cat. We would have to eat some fabulous Smoked Salmon on Belgian Endive with Crème Fraiche for starters paired with a nice sparkling thyme and lemon spritzer for drink.  Then a main of Shrimp and Scallops au Gratin in Puff Pastry Shells with a side of Petit Haricot Verts with Basil Breadcrumbs (this one of Ma family recipe.)  For drink I think we must have Hibiscus Elderflower Seltzer.   Then have Ma recipe of salad which secret recipe but it do have an herbal ingredient and strawberries with bleu cheese crumbles and vinaigrette. For desert must be Tart Au Sucre Brun.  That moves us into cheese course by candle light of Cougar Gold with thinly sliced Pears and Carr’s Assorted Biscuits for Cheese and coffee in Ma’s favorite demitasse cups from the  San Diego Wild Animal Park that feature tigers and other wildlife on them.

I a Mountain Cat and Hercule a fancy City Man so we would have this fine meal at the top of the Gondola on the Summit House Restaurant terrace at 6,872ft on top of Crystal Mountain starting at 7pm on July 28.  We might need jacket but we would have fabulous unobstructed view of Mt Rainier and be able to enjoy the evening sun and beautiful sunset surrounded by wild mountains in the wonderful splendor of one of God’s finest creations.  We might even see mountain goat!

Hazel:  What are some mistakes you’ve made and what did they teach you?

Monster Too: I have made mistake of let Ma get overworked, overstressed and spend all her energy help others but not recharge herself.  I tell Ma she need to say no to some things she doing outside family and reduce what she spend her energy on.  She was spread too thin.  Cracks were start to show.  We learn that this summer.

It pretty amazing that we still learning things at cat and human middle age but Ma tell me we learn all our lives and in order to become better cat and human we must take what we learn to heart and decide what most important and make decision to change things to get where we want to be.  Ma also say that not making decision is really making decision and you situation, no matter how bad, can be change if you work at it slow and steady.

Hazel: “Not making decision is really making decision,” great line!!

Monster Too: I and Ma want to help.  That just the way we are but we have to decide on just one or two things to do to help so we can keep our sanity and be able to take care of our family of pets and Pa and relatives.  Then extra energy can be use for good.  Ma not quite recover yet from this year and it show in my post.  I not as funny as I used to be but she working on it and I should be funny again soon.

Hazel: You’re doing great, Monster Too and Monster Ma! This has been so much fun! Time for the last question, if you could say only one thing to a potential new or existing follower, what would you like them to know?

Monster Too: Love life, live deliberately, make choices for your own betterment, hug yourself, your family, friends, dog, cat, horse or hamster and smile every day.

Hazel: Love it! Thanks so much Monster Too!

And thank YOU reader for reading!!

A cordial purr,

Hazel