Some of the highlights of the year:
We fostered 20 cats over the year. (Not all at the same time, whew!)
So they came back to stay with me, under strict quarantine from the resident cats, until the shelter could find something to do with them. And they found a home! After a couple more months, during which I despaired of finding them a place, a wonderful person found this blog, and decided, over the course of several days, that it was in everyone's best interest if she took them ALL to go home to live with her and her current FeLV+ kitty.
Of course I didn't stop fostering. We took in a group of four young adults just a few weeks later. And although I don't currently have any fosters, I'm sure that we will do it again.
I can't even begin to describe what this means to me... for the last three years, I've lived with the knowledge that Charlotte could die at any time. (And I guess that's still the case; none of us get any guarantees, but the death sentence hanging over her head has been lifted.)
We have chosen to view it as the blessing that it is: the surprise of good health where it was not expected, rather than to think of all of the vet expenses that we paid to "keep her alive." (Though I obviously haven't forgotten that part or I wouldn't be mentioning it, haha.)
Then I realized that there was no reason to be envious. We are adults and in a position that if we want to make it happen, then we could just make it happen!
Gettysburg was certainly closer than Dewey Beach, so we decided to try that one first. We had a great time, the dogs had a great time, and we came away with some wonderful memories. I don't know if we'll be able to do something like it every year, but we're definitely interested in going back.
Her sparkly, sprightly personality is still there: her joy knows no bounds and sometimes needs to be... umm... tempered. But she snuggles with us like a champ, has stopped her "submissive urination" problem that I've wrote fairly extensively about, and has just turned into a fantastic young lady. We couldn't possibly love her more, and she's an essential part of the household.
And like any year, there are dozens (if not hundreds) of little moments that are difficult to write about and do justice to, yet still make such a difference in our lives. How Bit has lost her fear of the dogs, and will now willingly come into the same room with them. How awesome it is when Argos jumps up onto the couch and curls up beside me. Or when Charlotte, still alive, stands in front of the refrigerator and yells at me to make me get her more milk.
I look forward to 2013, and the joys and even the sorrows that it will bring. I'm glad for all of you, with whom I can hopefully continue sharing snapshots of our lives, both the joys and the sorrows. So... Happy New Year! May the upcoming year be filled with joy and prosperity for you and yours.