Charley | Jane Boursaw Photo
Charley | Jane Boursaw Photo

(The continuing adventures of the little black cat thatĀ Tim sent me the day after he passed. Read all her adventures here. -jb)

This week with Charley, everyone’s favorite managing editor of Old Mission Gazette decides that plants are tasty, is confused about my early morning routine, and discovers The Great Unknown. First, let’s take a look at the plant issue…

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I really only brought houseplants back into my life after Tim passed. I don’t know why I haven’t had them all along. I guess maybe they were just too much responsibility with all the other things we’ve had going on during the past 20 years.

But I’ve always loved houseplants, to the point of filling up my room with them when I was a kid, so why not? So I began to collect a variety of houseplants, even hanging some in macrame hangers throughout the house. Tim never wanted me to put hooks in the ceiling, so here’s my chance.

Then one day, I noticed that Charley was climbing through the stair railing and venturing onto the top shelf in my office. She was there for a specific reason – to munch on the ponytail palm.

Charley and the Ponytail Palm | Jane Boursaw Photo
Charley and the Ponytail Palm (don’t worry; she didn’t go near the cactus) | Jane Boursaw Photo

At first I was alarmed. Would this habit hurt her? Would I have to abandon my newfound houseplant hobby? So, of course, I turned to Dr. Google.

It turns out that cats eat houseplants for a variety of reasons, including that they are a great source of certain vitamins, minerals, and especially fiber. However, some plants can be toxic, so I did a little research and made sure that all of my plants are safe for cats, including the ponytail palm. (Thank you, Molly Stretten, for alerting me about the jade plant, which is toxic to cats.)

So I ended up moving the ponytail palm next to Charley’s cat bed on my desk, which she’s pretty happy about because now she can wake up from her 12-hour nap for a quick bite before dozing off again.

Charley and the Ponytail Palm | Jane Boursaw Photo
Charley and the Ponytail Palm | Jane Boursaw Photo

Here’s a pretty good list of plants that are pet-friendly. Turns out there’s actually something called “cat grass,” grown specifically for cats. I’m going to find some of that and report back. I did try some wheat grass, but she didn’t seem that excited about it, and I also noticed that it started to mold, so out the door it went.

In other Charley news, she’s very confused about my new early morning exercise routine. It’s ok, Charley, I’m confused, too. Every time I have to get up at 5 a.m., I wonder why the heck I’m doing it, but it does seem to be helping with this new chapter in which I find myself.

The other morning, I went to get in my car at that ungodly hour and looked back at the house, only to see her staring out the window at me.

Charley wondering why I'm leaving the house at 5 a.m. | Jane Boursaw Photo
Charley wondering why I’m leaving the house at 5 a.m. | Jane Boursaw Photo

And then there’s The Great Unknown, otherwise known as The Basement, a mystery room full of intrigue and wonder. Up to this point, she’s never been interested in going down there, which is fine with me because there’s all sorts of things she could get into down there.

But the other day, I went down to get something out of the freezer and discovered her almost to the bottom of the stairs before scurrying back up with me.

Hmm … maybe I shouldn’t be too hasty in worrying about her down there. Maybe she’d start sorting through all those boxes…

Charley on her way to the Great Unknown | Jane Boursaw Photo
Charley on her way to The Great Unknown | Jane Boursaw Photo

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