For the first time, I'm able to share pictures of the Cat Sanctuary cats! These pictures were meant to be basic mug shots, but, cats being the way they are, their pictures do tell a story.
Ivy was in a cooperative mood and kept striking adorable poses. Don't tell her I snapped only one picture! Note Irene in the background, turning her back on Ivy and me. What could you expect? All calico cats are divas. They come into this world convinced that the world revolves around them, and although these four calicos are Perfect Ladies, you can see how the others express their opinion of Ivy being the center of attention first.
Heather didn't seem to want her face photographed; by the time I got a shot of her face I'd given up trying to get her creamy-white spots or extra toes into the picture. Heather really does have brown eyes, or at least very dark amber eyes that reflect red at night. She is a very sweet, kind cat--the one who seemed to be trying to deliver some of her own kittens prematurely in order to adopt her mother's orphaned kittens--but she understands a difference between behavior humans would describe as Loving, which is unconditional, and behavior humans would describe as Liking and Encouraging, which is super-conditional. She doesn't encourage her human to give other cats more than one or two greeting strokes before turning my attention toward her, Heather, Queen of the World...and the others are the same way.
Grayzel didn't look at the camera but did show her distinctive gray-and-hazel color. (Grayzel is the middle-aged aunt; the others are about a year old.)
Irene seemed to want me to photograph her right flank, which you already saw in the background behind Ivy. She refused to turn her green eyes toward the camera until I grabbed the scruff of her neck and pushed her head in the right direction. Hence the soulful "Why are you so clueless?" gaze.
In the final scene (not shown) I hand out treats. Everyone purrs and cuddles and agrees that whatever bizarre human whim got into me will not be held against me in the future.
More than one neighbor thought Iris, not shown, had the cutest face of these cats. Iris left the Cat Sanctuary because she resented her sisters' kittens (and said so by teaching them to do disgusting things on the porch), but she's been memorialized in one neighbor's cell phone "wallpaper."
Note also that although these cats, plus our late lamented Candice, produced a total of nineteen kittens this spring, no spring kittens or adoptable cats are currently living at the Cat Sanctuary. One person who moved up to the short list by "purrticularly" wanting a Manx-mix Patchnose kitten is still waiting to find out whether there'll be another one next year.