Since the computer with all my cat photos is taking a wee vacation, I won't post any cat photos... yet.
When I was cleaning up my mom's home after she died, I found some drawings she'd kept that I'd made when I was quite young. Evidently one of the first things I ever drew was not a thing at all, but a cat. My love affair with cats started young, and has only grown stronger as I've aged.
One of the first photos ever taken of me with a cat was with Mopsie, a polydactyl tabby stretched out by my side. My family wasn't the wealthiest, so I was in my old baby bed with bars, head and feet almost touching the ends. Mopsie evidently loved me, as the barred sides were up, making it a wee bit less easy to get into bed with me.
Mopsie was the first of many cats I have known and loved.
You don't ever need to shut up about your cats. This is "safe space" for cat lovers.
I understand what you wrote about emotional support from felines. When my mother was dying, the last cat I ever dumped on her was a great, (and usually the only) comfort. One of the relatives suggested I "put him to sleep" after mom died. My jaw hit the floor, and bounced after that comment. Since none of the more settled folk would take him in, I rearranged my lifestyle to accommodate him in his senior years. He's been dead for 12 years now. I still miss him.
I always got the greatest comfort from dogs and wasn't sure if I'd take to cats so easily. Perhaps because the one cat I had for over a decade was pretty anti-social.
But these 2 I have now I got as very wee-kittens, did my research, socialized them right, and lo and behold they are most affectionate and most comforting. It's been an especially hard last-couple-of-years for me and having that little bit of unconditional love and loyalty has been most therapeutic.
And yes, when Cinco released that live chipmunk into my bed, inviting me to learn how to hunt properly, and I did indeed catch the thing ... before I released it I couldn't help but notice it was nice and plump and would probably be an ok breakfast.
First, you are going to need about 10 or so fat chipmunks
Make sure you decapitate them right after their death and strip their fur off. Hold them upside down to make sure all the blood runs out.
Save the fur - you can make a nice pair of gloves with them later.
With a sharp knife, de-bone the little guys, but save the bones. Once you have your pile of bones, put them in a 2 qt pan and boil them. You will use this as your stock for your chili.
Chop up meat into fine pieces or grind.
2 lb. Chipmunk meat pieces
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1 small green pepper, chopped
2 cans (16 oz. each) Dark Red Kidney Beans, undrained
2 cans (16 oz. each) Pinto Beans, undrained
2 cans (16 oz. each) Black Beans, undrained
1 can (14.5 oz.) diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can (6 oz.) tomato paste
2 envelopes chili seasoning mix 1/2 tsp.
Ground Cinnamon 1-1/4 cups Sour Cream
Use your broth you made from the bones to boil the meat in a large sauce pot on low heat.
Make sure you do this slowly, use a slow cooker to make the meat tender. Cook for about 3 hours on low heat. Then let it set for 30 minutes and skim off any fat.
Add onion and green pepper; cook until tender, bring up to a low boil on medium heat, stirring frequently.
ADD all remaining ingredients except sour cream; mix well. Bring to boil; cover. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
SPOON into soup bowls; top with sour cream.
Great Substitute:Prepare as directed, substituting 2 pkg. (16 oz. each) thawed
frozen Ground Turkey
I have spent more than half of my life with Fatbat, the feline love of my life. He's a bit of a tyrant and may have connections to the Sith but I love him. I've been through boyfriends, girlfriends, and a marriage. People are fickle but as long as you feed a cat and worship him unfailingly he will be a friend for life.
Fatbat is twenty and in good health but he frequently gives me that feeble I'm-so-old-I-could-drop-dead-any-minute meow to get his way.
Here's Fatbat in his Halloween costume last year. He was unimpressed.