The Mint Dynasty

Is anyone else a Beverly Nichols fan? Down the Garden Path came into my life at a really dark time and meant so very much then (thank you Karen!). Well, it still does.

Besides all the garden inspiration, I loved his plan to host 100 cats and call each of them by a number. What a smart way to go about it!

Mr. Nichols reminded me that there were some gaps in my life just then, some missed opportunities for happiness. It was time to love a garden again. And it was time to have cats. Possibly a dog or two. Maybe not 100 cats. Maybe something more like 10. Not at once. Just as the years ticked by.

The Mint Dynasty was born. (I believe Miss Mint makes her first appearance in Laughter on the Stairs.)

It started with Miss Omega Mint, an aged Siamese who’d been parked in the shelter for several months. She needed to own a home again. I needed her. We also needed a kitten, so neither of us would get too hinky or obsessive. W&M picked out Jack T. Mint for me, based on his alleged intelligence. A pesty kitten with a ridiculous tail, he was destined to become our alpha.

Omega died too soon, a grand old lady when she came to me. Her passing made way for Elsa Mint and Augustus Calendar Mint, who, with Jack, established a sort of neighborhood pride. This was entirely Gus’ fault. (If ever someone recommends a kitten to you as “a lover, not a fighter,” run the other way. That lover will make friends with other cats, teach them to use your cat door, and share his meals with them.)

Since then the ranks of the Mints have swelled, mostly unintentionally. Every time I realize we’ve got a new one, I have that sick sense of dread. And every time I find so many surprise moments of laughter and love. We’ve got a great beast of a dog on board as well, Maxim M. deMint. When he’s not guarding (aka bossing) me, he delights in staggering around with his nose up the other Mints’ grills.

Max patiently waiting for me to catch up.
Max patiently waiting for me to catch up.

I love watching this dynasty develop, and am honored to be their host. Their dynamics are endlessly interesting and every time I think I’ve got them figured out, I’m quickly corrected.

Lucky us, all the Mints are flourishing after this move to Boise. Even dreadful Barn Cat, who I felt guiltiest about relocating, is thriving, probably the happiest he’s ever been.

So, that’s the Mint Dynasty in a nutshell. A strange and vibrant social organization that has delegated their care and feeding to me. Sometimes they even let me sleep in. Sometimes.

Tattoo is not a fan of sleeping in.



Hello World!

Flying under the radar just now . . . this is an draft version of my blog. It’s public so I can get some feedback from advisors and friends on the architecture and content but it’s not ready for prime time. If you want to jump in and share your opinion, please do! In advance, thanks for your understanding.


Welcome to my nesting blog. Here’s how I’m making a home in this new-to-me little egg house at the foothills of the Rockies. Here’s how I’m trying to figure out the next chapters a life that has not quite gone according to plan. I hope you’ll join me on the ride.

More about me: tight budget vs lofty ambitions. Some days I meet the challenge, others feel like epic fails. I believe that living in a beautiful, happy space extends to your whole world. That world includes a home shared a bunch of creatures, who often pose a design challenge. It also includes fabulous family and friends.

This life didn’t turn out the way I thought it would. Each day is a challenge to regain my stride. Gone are my executive days of hiring a professional for every job or just buying what I think I need whenever I want it. These are the days of figuring it out for myself, coming up with alternatives, and sometimes just making do with less. Good for my character, hard on my ego! Yet as they say, the only thing you can do is start from here. Let’s make it fun.