Notes from a parish cat and his author Julie Mackenzie

My photo
I am Father Tom Fish, esteemed member of the religious team at Temptation of Christ Parish in the novels by author Julie Mackenzie. As to my background, I was invited into the rectory as a stray, laid on the charm, and was invited to stay, even honorarily ordained and no less spiritual than my sidekick Father Will. He dotes on me to high heaven and forgives all of my street cat proclivities, whatever the hell that means.

Monday, December 20, 2021

Christmas is Coming!

Hi, furriends!

How did Christmas get here so fast?

One minute it's turkey, and the next minute it's the Christmas goose. Well, not really. We don't cook goose around here unless you count when the housekeeper yells, "Tom, your goose is cooked if you don't get away from..., or if you don't stop carrying on..(or whatever.)" I guess it means I'm in trouble if I keep doing what I'm doing. A silly expression if you ask me.

It wasn't that long ago that Bridget was playing with a pretty snowflake hanging on the window..

Now there are all sorts of things hanging on our big tree set up in the living room. Everything got thrown on it but the kitchen sink! 

Here's a favorite cat toy we got last year. Anyone for a nip?

It sure looks full-size, doesn't it? It's actually only about two and a half inches tall!

After the tree was put up, Bridget suddenly got frisky and wanted to play.  Me, I just take things in stride..

One of our many nutcrackers sits under the tree, wide-eyed as usual. We have the frog prince nutcracker who's really cool, too! He'll be along later...

Hope your days leading up to Christmas are extra-special ones. We'll be having more days with the housekeeper since she won't be traveling the roads in the early morning hours like she's been doing. 

It's funny when she gets ready to head out the door. She says, "Are you ready for my apology treats?"
Of course, we always are ready for treats. These are called apology since she feels guilty for leaving us.

Have a very Merry Christmas, you beautiful and special furriends! We love you and hope the happiness of the holidays carry you through all of next year. (which can stop right where it is..we're not quite ready for it yet!!!)

Purrs and hugs,

~Tom, Bridget, Penny & the housekeeper Julie xoxoxo

Monday, December 13, 2021

Sharing Our Selfies

Everybody seems to be doing selfies lately and a good looking bunch of friends you are!

For me, a selfie means posing which I'm good at unless I'm not. Here I'm in all my fluffy handsomeness but you can see my right eye is squinting. That's the bad one that I get drops in which I hate, and I try to get out of that torture every way I can and then I finally give in.

 Paws down, Bridget takes the best selfies without even trying. 

And finally, Penny with a selfie that shows off all her charms.

We have a lot of wreaths around our house. The one behind her isn't a Christmas one, but we're slowly getting into the spirit!

Have a happy week!

Monday, December 6, 2021

When Nothing Goes Right

 Let's see now..

Time to plug in the lights, but what happened to the plug?

Housekeeper: It slipped down behind the tree, Tom

Oh, hell's bells. I guess I...! have to be the one to try to reach it.

Housekeeper: I can't. I have my hands full with ornaments.

Okay, then. I'm goin' in!!

Housekeeper: You're such a big help, Tom!


Monday, November 29, 2021

Holiday Memories

Hi Monday kittyfurriends!

The time is here to come up with something to post and all I can think of is the Christmas buying rush which I'm glad the housekeeper isn't really a part of. She says she started her purchases in August. I've seen mysterious packages lying around and I'm assuming (I hope rightly so) that they are ours!

Meanwhile, I've been looking around the old photos of Christmases past and have to admit, we have quite the collection to choose from - old postcards sent, me in my top hat, and all the wonderful sights and sounds we've captured during the holidays over the years.

We love angels and this little statue captures our fondness for our own angel Vinny Blackwhisker.

No stripes though. Just a soft golden color which kinda made him an angel long before he left us.

The holidays always bring up memories. Please share yours with us!

Monday, November 22, 2021

Turkey Week!

Hi, Furriends!

It's Day One of Turkey week!!

I can't wait to have some! They tell me it has an ingredient in it that makes you sleepy. Really? With cats, how can anyone tell? 



Ssshhhhh! Don't wake me! I have to rest up for the holiday!

Have a nice Thanksgiving everybody!

Monday, November 15, 2021

Sharing Our Creative Sides

Hello, furriends ~

Tom, Bridget and Penny here...

I'm including the whole gang because they've encouraged me to share a limerick I wrote. I thought it was really nice and jim-dandy of them to give me that sort of compliment. I know Bridget always likes them and has even written some poetry of her own..

For instance:

                                                                                   by Bridget Mackenzie

We don't know if Penny has a creative side. It's too early to tell, but we'll let you know.

Here's my latest limerick:

I have a prognosticating nose
I always know when it rains or snows
But, here's what's sad
Some might say bad
I cannot smell a rose!!

Of course, it's not true. I can smell roses, no matter what my nose is, haha!!

Have a good week!

Monday, November 8, 2021

The Holy and the Ivy

Hi, furriends!

Forget the usual Monday gripes..this bone I have to pick is with the housekeeper and her cat hair attack machine. It lurks in the closet and gets brought out about once a week and we all run, herd-like to get out of its path.

I run up the stairs, or if the weather is nice, you can find me outside. I have this great photo from a while ago of me turning my back on all the cleaning hubbub and getting out in the sunshine. 

It's one of my favorite photos of autumn.


Excuse me, but I'm supposed to be IN this photo!

Wanna try this again??

That's better!!

Besides my holy handsomeness, isn't the ivy pretty? (Spiders like to hide in it, but I always find them).

Monday, November 1, 2021

The Day After

Hi, furriends!

Hope you had a good Halloween. Ours was quiet. Snoozes were only interrupted in our peaceful slumber yesterday by kitchen noises. You know what we mean, cans opening, dishes lined up on the counter, rattling of utensils. Fortunately, Bridget had enough time to finish grooming me and getting me ready for a hearty meal!

We didn't have to dress up in costume which was okay with us. The only thing was our graphics to remind us of the holiday and Black Cat Appreciation Day.

Especially if the cat is musically inclined! (Beware the rabbit, though. He has a strange look in his eye!)

So now we're facing a brand-new month. November, here we come!

Strum those banjos and let's have some fun!

Monday, October 25, 2021

Hallo! Hallo! Anybody There?

Happy Monday, furriends!

The end of this week brings us Halloween. I don't know how much the holiday really means to us cats, but we do know those of us (not me) with all black fur might have a little too much attention paid and we need to be careful.

To me, black cats are the coolest. They are mysterious, magical and their eyes tempt you to look into their souls. Like my friend Cosmo who comes around once in a while to say hello. (Yeah, I noticed it, too. He's put on a little weight. He always talks about livin' the good life!)

This photo was taken in the spring/summer when he really makes it a point to visit. If I see him this week I'll wish him a happy Halloween, tell him we'll have treats for him if he insists on venturing out past nightfall!

For all of you, I hope you have a good week and a happy Halloween next weekend. Here's one of my special graphics to celebrate!

Monday, October 18, 2021

A Change in Routine

Hi, furriends!

This is the week that gets us all closer to Halloween which is next week, so I'll save creepy, crawly images until then...

I've noticed that Bridget and I have gotten more clingy when it comes to catmom and housekeep Julie..I ask for my back to be rubbed and ears scratched and chest fur combed and Bridget follows her around like a puppy dog, but meowing..Here she is torturing"helping" repot our lipstick plant.

You have to see the plant and its "lipsticks." Kinda cool!

We miss our human since she's out working the salt mines, so she says, even though only part-time. Her not being here takes a big chunk out of our routine. Oh, sure, we sleep a lot, look out the window and do all kinds of things, Penny included, but when it's lunch time, there's no opening of the fridge, sounds of plates on the counter or the smell of our food.

Finally, she gets home and we greet her at the door. I think she's as happy to see us as we are to see her! We immediately get treats and a promise of a good, hearty dinner an hour or so later.

We know her absence is only temporary. She thanks us for being patient, hinting at special kitty stuff for us that Santa Claws will bring. 

That's good enough for us, plus the extra attention!

Have a good week ahead!

~Tom, Bridget & Penny xoxoxo


Monday, October 11, 2021

Doing My Stretches

 Hi, my furry friends!

And, here we are...another Monday, but this time, I'm geared up for a good week!

I'm even back to my exercises, doing stretches so I can stay limber and maintain my exquiseet fizzeek! What sort of exercises do you do?

I can't put my foreleg behind my head yet, but I'm working on it! 

And, remember, to stretch your mind as well as your body for a completely awesome you!


Monday, October 4, 2021

Selfies on Parade!

Hi, furriends!

I thought I would do something a little different this week.

We want to show you our best sides, or some sides...hehe

Starting with Selfie #1 - me

#2 Selfie  - Bridget

Very shy yet queen of the stairs..she always wants me to say the password before I can get by her..I say, "Is it meow?" Of course, every time, it is and she lets me go....

#3 Penny or we've started calling her Penny-wise

So that's the three of us, our best looks on parade!

Have a good week!


Monday, September 27, 2021

Vanity Fair?

Hi, furriends!

In an effort to be helpful (and relieve some guilt since I pick on her so much) I have made a list of all the magazines and their cover editors in order to suggest a model for them. I know they must run out of ideas, so I've taken it upon myself to propose that my Bridget be the perfect solution.

This is the photo I chose for her.

She has the "look," the eyes say it all!

And, here she is!!

A cat's dream has come true!

(I hear some loud purring coming from somewhere *looks around*)


Monday, September 20, 2021

Time to Get Away

Hi, furriends ~

My little hobbit doesn't really exist except in my mind, but every once in a while, I need to escape. A nap doesn't really do it - too short. You wake up and you're back to square one.

If you have a place to go to either in person or in your mind, it's a good way to escape the boredom that gets to us every so often. No matter how many toys, trees, visitors, pats on the head, variety in our food or bird tv, squirrel tv, bee tv or neighbors, we get bored.

So, here I am in a place that's quiet, gentle on the nerves, and completely in my mind. When I get so this doesn't do it anymore, I don't know what'll happen.  Maybe you have some suggestions?

Let's hear 'em!

(Isn't this place cute? - Oooh, I think I have a new neighbor!)

Monday, September 13, 2021

My Beautiful Sisfur

Hi, furriends!

You want to meet a beautiful kitty?

Here she is..our Anastasia who left us about four years ago. She was the most easygoing cat I've ever known. A soft bubble of fur, she brightened my days and I miss her. The anniversary of her passing is this coming Thursday. She died right here at home, full of love, at the age of 16.

Anastasia Marie Nadine Delilah..we keep your purrs in our hearts always along with memories of  cuddles so affectionate.

She would often read to me...just kidding!

Who can forget my buddy Tinker here on the left. He had a thing for Anastasia but she wasn't interested. They were the two senior kitties in the family, Tinker repeatedly trying to win her affections. She must have felt something because she joined him at the Bridge less than four months after he went.

While kitties spend their lives, or at least part of them with us since we're all adopted, we know there's always plenty of love and we're happy. 

See ya again someday, guys!


Monday, September 6, 2021

No Labor Today, So We'll Play!

Hello, furriends!

I'm so happy we have a holiday right now, I can't tell you!

The housekeep is off somewhere which means we have the whole house to ourselves, Bridget, Penny and I. I don't think things will change much, just we'll have peace and food is readily available until she shows up this evening.

When Bridget and I get along, we like to play with our ball toy and it's a lot of fun.

If the ball rolls right, it's Bridget's. If it rolls left, it's my turn! Funny how it always stays on the track and never slips out. I guess if it did, we wouldn't know whose turn it was!

Hope you all have a fun day and a good week ahead! 

Purrs and nosetaps,

Tom, Bridget and Penny xxx

Monday, August 30, 2021

Something in the Way It Moved..!!

 Hey, I thought if I ignored Monday, it would go away..

NO!! It's still here..

Guys, it's good to say hello to all of you on this first day of the work snooze week!
I came across this photo and it prompted a question: What the heck was I looking at here?

Do you ever come across a pic your catmom or dad or somebody else took and you wonder
what was going on?

In this case, was it a bug, a strange sound, something weird like the pillow wasn't really a pillow at all?

I must've held my breath, kept my eyes sharp and my ears sharper and looks like I'm ready to give whatever it is plenty of room (either that or me outta there, hahaha!)

Have a good week and keep an eye out. You never know when an innocent object might come to life!!

Monday, August 23, 2021

Plush Lusciousness

Hello furriends!

Just like humans, sometimes we cats just feel like a million bucks. I don't know what it is, maybe it's how the sun strikes our furs, or how we look when we're freshly brushed, but we feel good when we look good!

Here's my freshly brushed, sunny outlook selfie to cheer your Monday!


Autumn is coming! Already the days are shorter and the breezes from the outside crisper..!

Have a good week, everyone!

Monday, August 16, 2021

A Week for Penny & Birdie

Hi, furriends!!

This Monday belongs to Penny and her birdie. One of the most fun toys for all of us is the birdie at the end of a wand. The housekeep swings it around and we try to catch it. Lots of times we don't but then we outfox her and turn real quick and pounce!!

Penny likes the birdie, but also wants to chew on the wand. I think she just likes to play with anything that moves..!! There's this real thin belt that gets slid along the floor, and Penny goes after that, too. There's never a shortage of toys. They're always coming into the house like bouncy balls and toy mice with extra catnip which we got from Target.

I'm still getting my glaucoma drops in the right eye which stays closed a good bit after. I hate going through this, but I'm told if I don't, the pressure will get too intense and not good for me or my eye. So, here's to you kids (as I'm winking at you!!)

All for now. If things got any more exciting, I wouldn't know what to do with myself! 


Monday, August 9, 2021

A Tribute

Dear Furriends ~

There's no doubt that whether it's our blogs or other social media venues, we get closer to some furriends more than others. I've never really thought about why that's so. It just happens. All of you who regularly visit, we consider precious furriends and we know we can count on you to stop by and say hello..

We lost one of our furriends this week to the big "C." What the heck is taking so long to figure out how to handle the devastating bugger? Two of our own family members - Anastasia and Tinker - both went to the Bridge after wrangling with the deadly disease.

Now, we've lost our furriend Paddy O'Malley from  It was a post  about Irish eyes smiling. We thought Paddy's eyes were always smiling. His presence in our cat community brightened all our days.


Our hearts are sad and we have to say, probably will be for some time. 
Miss you, pal!

Monday, August 2, 2021

An Op-Ed by Tom, Not Ed


You know what the trouble with Monday is?
I finally figured it out.
It's like standing at the beginning of a rope bridge stretched across a deep ravine. Only 
thing is, with the bridge, you can look over to the other side.
On the Monday that begins our week we can't.
That's the problem.
We can't see next weekend from here.
No telescope, no binoculars, no birds to fly over and back to tell us it's there..
It's frustrating and a disgrace. There outta be a law!

Now, let's see..

We had a Gotcha Day celebration for Penny. She spent the day under the covers. 
I guess she didn't want all the fuss. 

I saw my heart doc and my ticker's tickin' away. I saw it on a big, black screen and
there was my thickened wall, but nothing to worry about yet.

Our neighbor is moving. They were sooo nice and our time with them was much too
short. I'm glad there are no changes pending in my little world. I'm gonna stick close
for the time being. 

Hope you all are well and let's cross the old bridge together. Next weekend, here we come!

Nap first!

Monday, July 26, 2021

An Anniversary!

Hello, furriends!

This coming Thursday, we'll be celebrating Penny's first whole year with us. I can't believe it...time has really gone by fast!

Here's when we first had her in our house, all separated and everything. Very shy, it was best just to look at each other through french doors (we have four of them, would you believe?). 

I'd never seen a kitty that started out Siamese with added tabbiness on the legs and face...a lynx point, I think they call her. Very exotic..!!

After a year with us, she's still a mystery to me. She's either shy or aloof. The housekeeper thinks she's had a tough time of it, so is gentle with her. I try not to be too macho..

Here's to another year...maybe I'll work on my charms a little more..!

Monday, July 19, 2021

Green Acres!

Hello furriends!

It's been a weird time weatherwise! Rain and more rain and then even more! It's cloudy today, but I'm not going to let that affect my mood. 

You can now call me Farmer Tom! Look at my grass crop! 

 Chomp chomp chomp chomp chomp...I would have posed with it holding a pitchfork, but we didn't have a pitchfork and I decided just to dig in.

Who knew grass could grow in the dark? The only thing I ever heard that would grow in a spooky, dark place was mushrooms. The housekeeper's always complaining about having to mow the grass outside because it grows so fast, and she's not happy. I tell her just to go out there and have a chompin' good time!

Here's me again..

Oh, yummmmm!

So, that's about it for me for today. 

I hope the coming week is a happy one!

Monday, July 12, 2021

The All Clear

Hi, Friends!

Thanks so much for all the support and kind words for my blood letting. I love how they sneak up on you, distracting you in the front (nice try) while they poke you in the leg. It hurts! But, I guess, not as bad as if they didn't try to distract you. The technician was very nice and gave me treats after. The results? Everything looked good according to the vet, except I have to drink more water. No problems with hydration, but it could become a problem which we want to avoid. The housekeeper's looking into getting me a fountain. Sounds good to me. Could it be...?

This would be lovely, would it? I can play with the horsies, get a bath (cod forbid) and drink from the fountain, all at the same time!

Bridget and Penny say hello. They seem to be getting along better and better, but still at a distance. Good things take time, I guess!

See ya around!