The seasons are now in full transition from summer to fall and the dynamics and daily routines of our furry family are changing to adapt to mother nature's new temperament. Arrival times of our outside duo, Bonnie and Clyde, has also changed with the shorter daylight hours. Morning feeding times are now slightly later since sunrise is later and after their suppertime feeding, they disperse to their nighttime lodging rather than lazing around on the cool evening grass as they did all summer. A lazy summer afternoon nap in the shade of the silver maple has turned into a respite in the afternoon sun for Clyde.
For the past several weeks, we have been preparing shelters for our outside feline visitors. Earlier this month, we placed straw bails around the shelters for insulation to provide extra warmth during the cold winter nights and plugged in the heat pads in the shelters closest to the house. This week we lined the patio with additional straw bales to help buffer the wind and drifting snow. Of course, Bonnie and Clyde had to examine the new arrangements and seem to have given their approval. Hopefully we have provided enough alternatives for them to find warmth and feel safe if and when the weather turns harsh.
Even though they are inside, Zoie Joy, Miss Paddington and Halo have also adapted to the changing weather. They are seeking warmer spots to settle for their naps. Zoie enjoys her condo at the kitchen window which receives direct sun late morning through early afternoon. Halo and Paddy search out the sunny spots on the bed and seem to bask in the warmth. I have also started to use my microwaveable heat bags to add extra warmth under the covers for them to snuggle against.
Putting warmer comforters on the bed and fluffing the fleece throws prepare us for the colder weather that is coming our way. Our pets seem to have that same instinct to prepare for colder temperatures. In our family, we just give a little extra help to make their winter season safe and warm.
USA TODAY Bestselling Author Karen Rose Smith is an only child who delved into books at an early age. She learned about kindred spirits from Anne of Green Gables, solved mysteries with Nancy Drew and wished she could have been the rider on The Black Stallion. Yet even though she escaped often into story worlds, she had many aunts, uncles and cousins around her on weekends. Her sense of family and relationships began there. Maybe that's why families are a strong theme in her novels, whether mysteries or romances. Her 97th novel will be released in 2017.
Karen and Paddy
Readers often ask her about her pastimes. She has herb, flowers and vegetable gardens that help her relax. In the winter, she cooks rather than gardens. And year round she spends most of her time with her husband, as well as her four rescued cats who are her constant companions. They chase rainbows from sun catchers, reminding her life isn't all about work, awards and bestseller lists. Everyone needs that rainbow to chase.
Karen looks forward to interacting with readers. They can find her at the links below.