Saturday, January 2, 2010

Overlooking the Obvious

Yesterday morning I came home from work, feeling a little bit like I might be getting sick, so I made myself a cup of cranberry tea and went into the dining room to turn up the furnace.

That's when I saw it.  More cat-induced damage to the wallpaper.

I set my mug on the floor and whirled on Louis, pointing an accusatory finger at him.  "Was it you who did this?!  Was it?!"  As if the cat's gonna answer me.  Poor Christopher, my simple-minded behemoth cat, waddled quick as he could into the kitchen to hide under the table.  No sign of Marie.  She was probably someplace picking wallpaper shards out of her claws.

Then I sat down on the dining room floor, still in my uniform, boots, stocking cap and winter coat, sipped my tea and had a little Pity Party.  I felt like crap, Wednesday was Sean's birthday, I'd had to dig my car out of a 3-foot snowdrift after a mishap at the end of the alley, and now I have to repair wallpaper again.  Damn.

In case you're wondering, here's how I fixed the damage:  I used flat-sided toothpicks and tweezers to open up the claw marks a little wider, put a drop or two of wallpaper seam adhesive on the edges of the slits, then mooshed them back together with my fingernails.  I used a damp paper towel to wipe off the excess glue and to make the paper more flexible in the hopes it would moosh together a little less visibly.  All in all, it mooshed together pretty well.  It took me about half an hour to do this.  I would've taken photos, but I really don't want to remember this moment.

Then I did what every girl does when she's having a bad morning:  I called my mama.  "Those damn cats," she said.  "How are you gonna keep them from tearin it up again??"  I sniffled back, "I dunno, Mama, I'll think of something."

So I got into my favorite jammies, the Tootsie Pop ones my bestie gave me for Christmas, and snuggled down into my flannel sheets, thinking about how to cat-proof the dining room as I tried to fall asleep.  I could take the cats to the vet and have them declawed, but that's kinda mean.  Or I could close the cat flap and banish them to the laundry room/back porch, but it's pretty cold back there.  Or I could try to clip their claws myself, but Marie's objections might send me to the ER.  Or I could give the cats away and solve the whole problem, but I'd miss the little critters.

Or I could just shut the door from the kitchen into the dining room and the rest of the house.  Oh.  Yeah. 


  1. Sending a virtual hug to you for your last couple of days. But I literally laughed out loud when I read the last paragraph.

  2. How about putting up beadboard or something on the bottom of the wall?

  3. LOL, I'm glad your mooshing technique worked well. I like Karen Anne's idea if they don't leave it alone. Buggers.

    Hope you don't get sick. I've got a serious case of nastiness going on over here.

  4. Say, does anyone else read cooking with vickie ( or gardening in lower michigan (

    She vanished off the web with no notice a week or so ago - both websites and her email address bounces. Kind of worried.

  5. Here's a thought, check out Loretta's dining room...

    This could solve your problem.

  6. Oh, yeah. THAT made me laugh! Glad u found an easy solution. U don't deserve the abuse those kitties have been heapin' on you. Hope u feel better, too!!!!

  7. We feel your pain...

    We have 5 cats who think they own our house and have wrecked havoc on more than one restoration project.

    One thing you might be able to try is lemon oil. Wipe it on the molding under the wall paper.

    Also, there is a spray you can get at some pet stores that keep cats away from certain areas.

  8. Larry has a good point in case you forget to close the doors. I just learned in the past month (from another blog) that cats don't like citrus. I've had cats almost my entire life & never knew this. A little lemon oil on the baseboards might not hurt.

  9. Larry & Kate, I think I'll try that. Sometimes Louis & Marie eat a little morsel of people food (green beans, strawberries, Fig Newton crumbs & vanilla yogurt are their favs) but I don't think they eat citrus. Thanks for telling me about that!