cats

All posts tagged cats

National Kitten Day!

Published July 10, 2020 by Maryanne

Pumpkin

#nationalkittenday #cats #kittens #fiction #authors #1980s

Happy Friday! It’s also National Kitten Day!

For cat and kitten lovers, you may want to check out my book, “Love Cats.” It’s a fiction story that takes place in the 1980s. A spoiled rich girl meets a working class guy and falls madly in love. However, due to her immaturity, and selfishness, she takes that love for granted and messes up — big time. During the break-up, a kitten shows up at her doorstep, and shows her what it’s like to love unconditionally. Check it out here: LOVE CATS

Has a kitten ever changed your life? Let me know in the comments below! (Or simply share a picture of your cat or kitten!)

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing. She is also available for book signings and motivational speaking engagements. In addition to Love Cats, she is the author of the following books :

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit:Be (Extra)Ordinary

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: I Don’t Want To Be Like You

Her fiction book “Love Cats” second printing is now available, under the pen name Krystianna Mercury, from Pink Flamingo. You can purchase it here: Love Cats

Single Women Less Likely to Date Men with Cats? WHAT?!?!?!?!?!

Published June 27, 2020 by Maryanne

kurt-cobain-with-catKurt Cobain loving his cat

Not once, but TWICE on television news this week, I heard about the study. And it’s a study that, for the life of me, I don’t get. But, yeah, I heard right, “Single women are less likely to date men with cats.” Don’t believe it? I wouldn’t have either, but I heard it with my own ears, and read it with my own eyes on many news sites. Here is just one: Women Are Less Likely to Date Men with Cats

In this study, men who had dating profiles with cats in the photo were viewed as less masculine and more neurotic.

I disagree. Men who love cats, or animals in general, are strong, good providers, fun to be around, intelligent, and sensitive. And I’m not only speaking about my husband, but the husbands/long term partners of my dearest friends. (And a few single men I’m friends with who love cats!)

When I was single, my cats were a great measure in choosing who was good for me. The great guys were the ones who bonded with my cats. Even if someone was not quite a match for me, I’ll still remember him as a good catch (for someone else) because of how he interacted with my cats. The losers…urgh, I’d like to forget them but who can forget when your cat pisses on the jacket of an asshole. Pretty funny! A very good cat who never misbehaved did that. He was letting me know in a subtle way, “beware” and he was right.

It wasn’t too long ago we were reading cool articles like this, Cats & Women: Why the Connection

So why, now, the disconnect? What made women turn on cats, or more specifically, men with cats? I can understand if a woman had a bad experience with a cat. In fact, I imagined such a thing in my fictitious erotic novel, Love Cats — where a young woman hates cats because of a bad experience, which we don’t find out until later. She ends up dating a few cat guys and eventually gives cats a chance.

Any random girl can dislike cats for whatever reason. But an entire study of females being “anti-cat” is something I just can not understand.

Back in my day, girls met potential dates in bars/clubs. I caught the tail end of online dating, so I don’t have much experience there. Like other women, I did have my laundry list. But it never occurred to me to put an animal on the deal breaker list. My deal breakers included: no smoking, no one obsessed with sports, no mama’s boys, no one who is verbally/physically abusive.

But “no cats”? Why would that be in a dating profile?

Perhaps a woman would be jealous of a man’s relationship with a cat? (I actually addressed that issue in Love Cats!) It’s not that far-fetched. Women can be catty (pun intended!). This can actually be a red flag for a guy! If a woman is jealous of your pet, would she also be jealous of your future son or daughter? Hmmm…..

But, let’s get back to why guys who love cats are AWESOME. You see, the bottom line is, cats are not instant-lovers like dogs. You need to nourish them and spend time with them in order to get them to come out of their shell. And if a man can take an independent cat and turn him/her into a playful, needy, snuggly bunny who runs to the door like a dog when he comes home, that man is a keeper! I should know, I married a man bonds with cats like that! And though we don’t have kids, I can only imagine what a good father my husband would be. In many families, pets are the stepping stones to children! (But let’s not count the idiots who give up their pets when they have kids!) Good pet parents equal good parents, period! It simply makes sense.

Perhaps single ladies need to re-think their views on men with cats. They may be missing out on a great one — and staying single a lot longer than they want to.

Maryanne Christiano Mistretta is the loving cat mom to Nicholas Gray and Sammy “Whammy” Keane Clemens. Her book Love Cats is written under the pen name Krystianna Mercury and available from Flamingo Media

RIP Bob, A Cat Who Left His Paw Print On the Hearts of Millions

Published June 16, 2020 by Maryanne

9781250217387

I just heard the sad, sad news that Bob died Monday, June 15, at the age of 14 or 15. (And I can’t stop crying!)

A Street Cat Named Bob by James Bowen became an instant NY Times Best Seller back in 2012. I was busy writing my own books back then so I wasn’t yet aware of it.

However, after I had to put my beloved cat Bennie down, early 2019, I joined a cat book club to help heal my pain. (But of course, we never quite get over the loss of a pet. It’s impossible). The first book we read was Strays by Britt Collins. I enjoyed that book and when I read the reviews it was compared to A Street Cat Named Bob by James Bowen. I purchased it immediately and fell in love with! I read (and re-read) all three books in the series, watched many You Tube videos, and followed Bob on Facebook.

For those who don’t know Bob, he was a stray who was found by James Bowen, a recovering drug addict and musician who busked in the streets to make ends meet. The story of James and Bob became a book, then a movie! (I loved the movie, but of course I loved the book better!) Here is the link to the book: A Street Cat Named Bob

And, for a real taste of Bob’s personality, there are tons of videos on You Tube where you can see Bob sitting on Bowen’s shoulders while he sings and plays guitar; Bob giving Bowen a high-five with his paw for exchange of a treat; and Bob at Bowen’s side during their celebrity status on TV talk shows. It’s all so endearing–Bob had what you call PURR-sonality! He was not only a smart cat, but a very cute one too! Who could resist that pudgy face and piercing green eyes?

Millions of cat lovers fell in love with Bob; and millions are now mourning him. There is definitely a hole in the hearts of many who looked forward to Bowen’s updates on Bob. Everyone just loves a feel good story with a happy ending. And cat lovers get a kick out of the funny things they do.

Well, this is another terrible thing to put on the list of this awful year. My heart goes out to James Bowen, his fiance, and their other cats. And to all the millions of Bob fans. Cats are special creatures. They touch our souls so deeply, giving us so much love and support. You just have to pay attention to cats–give them a bit of love and watch the magic happen! The story of James and Bob is proof of that!

Godspeed Bob … a beautiful little soul who will live in our hearts fur-ever…

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta is the owner of two cats, Nicholas Gray and Sammy “Whammy” Keane Clemens. Her fiction book “Love Cats” second printing is now available, under the pen name Krystianna Mercury, from Pink Flamingo. You can purchase it here: Love Cats

Contact Maryanne at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com 

Love Cats – Second Printing Now Available!

Published June 4, 2020 by Maryanne
Love Cats 2020
“Love Cats” by Krystianna Mercury
With all the tragedy happening, I was hesitant as to when to write about the second printing of my book “Love Cats.” (Krystianna Mercury is the first time I’m using a pen name. You can purchase directly from Pink Flamingo: Love Cats).
I’ve decided that making my announcement today, National Old Maids Day would be appropriate, because it’s a day to support single and childless women.
In “Love Cats” (Love Cats) I address the “old maid” issue via my character Janey.
 
Janey starts out as a smart character who wants a guy with substance. Though when she meets one, her insecurities get the best of her and she subconsciously does everything she could to kill the relationship. Though the difference between me and her is that while creative success is what drove me, Janey doesn’t need any kind of success as she’s already a wealthy trust fund and she’s simply driven by her own selfishness.
 
Whatever motivates us to stay single (work, fear, waiting for the right one, etc.) I think it’s super cool that in these modern times women are viewed as so much more and we no longer have to live in “shame” because we aren’t hooked up.
 
I tell everyone who asks my advice, to wait. Wait until you meet that one of a kind soul mate who rocks your world. There is no need to settle. Nor was there a need to settle 30 years ago either, we just took more shit from people for not settling. I’ve avoided certain relatives for years because they were more interested in who I was dating and how serious it was. Not my career, not my interests, not my dreams or desires. Just who I was dating and if marriage was in the cards.
 
I dreaded those horrible questions, yet stuck to my guns and never settled.
 
Mind you, when I say “never settled” while I did date a ton of jerks, I also dated some really cool guys — just not right for ME. I am still friends with some of these guys and my husband likes them too. We are so blessed that we have such an honest relationship with each other. And his ex-girlfriend’s brother is my favorite of all his friends! And that’s another cool blog for a later date, how trust is the most beautiful thing in a relationship.
 
But back to Janey …
 
In “Love Cats” Janey’s live-in maid, Lucia refers to her as an “old lady” for not having a ring on her finger — and she’s not even 25 yet! But that’s how it was in the 1980s. So much pressure for a young girl trying to find herself. Too much noise from the peanut gallery. Urgh!
 
It’s so cool that it’s acceptable today for women to live at home longer, concentrate on their careers, and not even marry at all if they don’t want to. Even though I’m married, I can sigh with relief that there is no pressure on me to bear children and raise a family. My husband and I are perfectly fine with our little love cat, Derick. Life is so good when you don’t have the rest of the world throwing their desires in YOUR face. We’re so blessed to exist in a live and let live time. Let’s keep it that way!
 
We’ve come a long way baby!
 
THANK GOD!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing. She is also available for book signings and motivational speaking engagements. In addition to Love Cats, she is the author of the following books :

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit: https://www.amazon.com/Be-Extra-Ordinary-Ways-Become/dp/1733546227

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

“Love Cats” Picked Up By Traditional Publishing Company For Second Printing

Published October 25, 2019 by Maryanne

Love Cats front and back cover

First Printing of Love Cats, 2015

Anyone who has been following my blog for some time, knows that back in 2015 I self-published my second book “Love Cats.” I had a great run with it, until Next Century Publishing folded not too long ago and “Love Cats” became out of print.

Strangely, I had someone from San Francisco (I live in New Jersey) call my home asking where he could get a copy. That call made me aware that “Love Cats” was no longer available. I didn’t even know Next Century Publishing went out of business!

After I published “Love Cats” I tried my luck at getting traditional publishers for my next three books. And sure enough, my next three books were picked up by traditional publishers! My latest I got my first advance ever! So, I figured, why not try my luck with “Love Cats.” I sent it out to only nine publishers and Pink Flamingo Media (https://www.pinkflamingo.com/) decided to go with it!

I was THRILLED! Of all the books I wrote, and had published, “Love Cats” was my baby. Most of my adult life I worked as a journalist, telling the truth, creating a work of fiction was a challenge. “Love Cats” originally came to me in a dream. It was partly inspired by the short-lived CBS series “Swingtown.” And partly inspired by the “me, me, me” world we are living in, which I never realized the extent until I saw first hand on Facebook how many people were takers. I thought to myself, If people are so selfish on the internet — and in real life (because everyone knows a few ego-maniacs) — I can only imagine how terribly selfish they’d be in bed! Hell, I even wrote an article about selfishness in bed for gasm: http://gasm.org/article/and-now-back-to-me/

Thinking about selfish people, I created the character Janey. I took selfishness to the extreme and made a story out of it. I also wanted to create a male character who didn’t feel that “every man’s dream” was to have a threesome, because it’s not. Though they may be rare, there are some incredibly loyal men out there. (What’s the saying? If you want to be a happy couple, hang out with four happy couples and you will be the fifth!) Beck was loyal, though not a pushover. Nevertheless, Janey’s selfish bedside manner could make almost anyone cringe.

As a happily married woman, I had to think back to my times of being single and not so happy. I took my mind back to the 1980s; and with the woes of single-hood, there was an amazing soundtrack — the dark wave and new wave era. If you love Bauhaus, Iggy Pop, Kate Bush, The Smiths, and The Cure, this book is for you!

Now where do cats come in? Beck is a dedicated cat lover. Janey hates cats. But what happens when Janey’s selfish ways backfire and her life is at an all-time low when a kitten shows up on her doorstep?

You’ll have to wait until 2020 to read the ending, if you don’t already have a copy of the first edition of “Love Cats.”

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing. She is also available for book signings and motivational speaking engagements. She is the author of the following books :

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit: https://www.amazon.com/Be-Extra-Ordinary-Ways-Become/dp/1733546227

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

“The Gypsy Smiled” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Gypsy-Smiled-Maryanne-Christiano-Mistretta-ebook/dp/B074VC7MT9

 

 

Rover’s Relief CBD Salve for Pets

Published October 18, 2019 by Maryanne

Rover's Relief

Earlier this week I helped out at a pet expo for two reasons: 1. To network with those who were possibly interested in my professional blogging services or having me ghost write their books (after all, anyone who is self-employed should have a book no matter what line of work they are in); 2. I LOVE ANIMALS! And nothing beats a good score of new products for my kitties. They truly deserve the best.

When you’re a person like myself, either on the go (driving long distances) or at home plugging away on the computer (writing assignments or my next book!), no matter how much you love your life and what you do, you are bound to get a little stressed and achy.

A few weeks ago I noticed a pinch in my shoulder area. I was right on it with acupuncture and chiropractic treatments. Not quite yet healed, I was starting to feel a little achy in the shoulder area again.

Around this time I met RaChelle Lobre, of Rover’s Pet (roverspet.com). I’m always ready to share the story of how CBD oil made my cat Bennie more comfortable during his final days here on earth. Then I got to talking about my achy shoulder. RaChelle suggested taking a big glob of Rover’s Relief CBD salve and putting it on my shoulder.

I did as she suggested and within minutes, my shoulder pain stopped. This salve helped me more than any of the acupuncture or chiropractic treatments did! I was now able to dress and undress without being in pain.

That night I slept like a baby. I woke up the next day feeling like a brand new person, ready to face the world! Hell, if it’s good enough for Rover, it’s good enough for me!

This premium hemp salve contains 500mg CBD oil, and no THC. It’s easy to use and smells pleasant. I recommend using before bedtime because it truly relaxes you.

If Rover’s Pet worked that good for me, imagine what it could do for a dog?

Our babies count on us to give them nothing but the best. If your pet can use a little relief, this is a product I trust and recommend.

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing, and motivational speaking engagements. She is the author of the following books :

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit: https://www.amazon.com/Be-Extra-Ordinary-Ways-Become/dp/1733546227

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

And check out her anti-bullying You Tube channel, Be YOUniquehttps://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLq6J9MSvcjd-haQ30ycLWA?view_as=subscriber

 

Love Cats Now Out of Print — Seeking Traditional Publisher for New Edition!

Published July 30, 2019 by Maryanne

Love Cats front and back cover

Love Cats by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta

It was the ’80s and it was hot! The romance of Beck Stewart and Janey Peyton took place in the new age dance clubs. They bonded over their love for books and music; and of course their intense sexual chemistry.

But major red flags were revealed when Beck brought Janey home for the very first time. He not only discovered that she was a snoop, but that she wasn’t fond of his beloved cat Morticia.

Then the drama truly reared it’s ugly head when Janey’s jealousy got the best of her. You see, Beck was a hard worker. Janey was a trust fund baby who didn’t have to work. Janey began spending her lonely days going on sexual escapades to “get back” at Beck for “neglecting” her.

Will this couple make it? And what happens when a kitten shows up at Janey’s doorstep? Can she learn to love cats?

Love Cats was my very first work of fiction. Making a living as a journalist most of my adult life, I only knew how to speak of the truth. When creating these characters, I did so much research to “re-live” the 1980s through them. I wanted the book to be as authentic as possible. I wasn’t going to use phrases people use today in my book.

I also had a good friend, Todd Gordon, who is a screenwriter, go over Beck’s words. Is this how a guy talks? I asked him.

In Beck, I wanted to great a guy who was cool, but also a bit of a pushover. In many romantic novels, you see the woman as a victim. I wanted to illustrate that men can be victims too in the world of romance. Throughout Love Cats Beck remains hopeful for the relationship, until Janey pushes his button to the max the time she comes home when the sun comes up, wearing a completely different outfit she wore the night before.

With Janey, I wanted to create the most selfish character possible. As a late bloomer in social media, I started using Facebook in 2013, against my better judgement. One of my clients, who I helped ghostwrite a book, sold me on it. She said that she was able to sell many books thanks to her presence on Facebook. When my first book, On the Guest List: Adventures of a Music Journalist, was self-published, my publishing company said that I sold more books the first day than the average author sells in a year! Anyway, being on Facebook, I witnessed firsthand how selfish people could be. You can’t blame social media. People were always like this, but social media magnifies it tenfold.

For example, in my article for Gasm, “Selfish Sex” I explain how I believe most of the population are takers: http://gasm.org/article/and-now-back-to-me/

When I see selfishness taken to the maximum level in real life, I can only imagine how bad these people are in bed. With that, I created sex scenes where the lead character Janey Peyton takes. She’ll get her rocks off and not reciprocate.

But as a humanitarian who believes people are truly good, I give Janey’s character much room for growth. And how else can that happen but through making a major connection with a little animal. In this case, a kitten who shows up at her doorstep.

Throughout the book, I keep the 1980s element, in both music and style. For example, nose rings were far from popular back then, but every now and then, you’d see some cool person wearing them. I also featured Betsy Johnson fashions, and some throwbacks who still wore featured hair in the 1980s. There’s a major fashion upgrade when Janey Peyton gives Heather makeover tips and she emerges with her blonde hair slicked back like the ladies in Robert Palmer’s “Addicted to Love” video.

While it was the 1980s and ’80s music was a stand-out, I didn’t ignore the fact that there were 1960s bands doing reunions, like The Monkees.

And what would a book about cats be without some reference to the play, Cats? Lyrics by both Robert Smith (The Cure) and Iggy Pop were purchased (and used by permission) from Hal Leonard Music publishing.

My all time favorite review from a reader spoke volumes about the novel: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/love-cats-maryanne-christiano-mistretta/1122001262

Since Love Cats was published May 2015, I’ve donated portions of proceeds to various animal groups. Now that it’s out of print, it seems to be more popular than ever as it’s climbing the Amazon ranks! Just last week, I received a phone call from a stranger asking, “How can I purchase Love Cats.” Knowing that it was now out of print, I told him he could try Amazon. I only have two copies left for myself. I noticed that Amazon was selling two books for $44.17. With some poking around, I discovered they were bought by another book selling company and you can now purchase them for over $80!

I’m determined to make another great go of it in a second edition, so readers do not have to pay extraordinary prices to feel the love that is Love Cats!

Love Cats was my second self-published book. Since then I’ve published three other books, traditionally. This is why I am turning down self-publishers who have been soliciting me ever since Love Cats first became out of print (and will continue to do so).

There is now a  Love Cats Too in the works. It’s the conclusion with characters from Love Cats and my other work of fiction, The Gypsy Smiled (not yet out of print and available on Amazon): https://www.amazon.com/Gypsy-Smiled-Maryanne-Christiano-Mistretta-ebook/dp/B074VC7MT9

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing, and motivational speaking engagements. She is the author of the following traditionally published books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

 

Freddie Mercury, Bullied as a Young Boy

Published July 3, 2019 by Maryanne

Freddie Mercury as a BoyFarrokh Bulsara (photo found via Google Search)

The other night, my husband and I once again went to see our favorite Queen tribute band, Almost Queen (http://www.almostqueen.com/). Note that they have been around long before the successful Bohemian Rhapsody film. That said, if you’re a true Queen fan who loves the deep tracks, as well as the hits, be sure to check them out, as you will definitely hear some rare gems.

Anyway, before the show, I thought about how I’ve heard the stories of Freddie Mercury being bullied as a young boy because of his overbite. He was called a donkey by school bullies.

But did that stop him from becoming Freddie Mercury? Absolutely not.

If you’re having a hard time and being bullied, perhaps you have that special something that you can bring to the table by being YOUnique!

Check out my new video, where I speak about Almost Queen, Freddie Mercury, and how being bullied didn’t stop him from becoming a household name! (And if you like it, give me a thumbs up).

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing, and motivational speaking engagements. She is the author of the following books (in which she mentions Freddie Mercury in both, and how he inspired her as a child, teenager, and still today!):

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

Dream Board Manifest! One Year Later!

Published June 9, 2019 by Maryanne

Dream Board June 2018My Dream Board, June 9, 2018

One year ago today, I created this Dream Board. And it’s astonishing how things manifested.

First, look close, you will see that animals are a priority in my life. Since this dream board, my husband Dennis and I were able to save a feral cat, Bennie, and take care of him for the rest of his months. He was already sick when we took him in with FIV. But we loved him with all our hearts and gave him the best care we could. Five months later, he had to be put down. I collapsed in my husband’s arms. We were both heart-broken. Our vet told us, “He came to you to live out the rest of his life.”

One month later, we took in Sammy. I adopted him from St. Hubert’s Animal Shelter in Madison, New Jersey. Sammy was considered a senior cat, at age 9, but he’s tiny and very kitten-like. He’s a little doll and fits in beautifully with the family. He’s best buddies with our kitty Nicholas, who is now 6 (and came into our lives on this day three years ago!)

At the beginning of 2019, I created a giving journal, keeping track of all the places I give donations to each week. Many of them involve giving to animals, especially cat rescues. Do you see the word “FREE“? I’m always winning things–and I do mean ALWAYS! One of the things I won since creating the dream board was a certificate for a tattoo — I got a cat silhouette on my inner arm.

See “Power of Positive Speaking“? (Upper middle?) THAT is my next biggest goal, to become a motivational speaker. I joined Toastmasters right after my “Best Girlfriend Getaway” (see lower right corner) in October (to “Summit of Greatness” in Columbus, Ohio). Three days of nothing but motivational speakers, including Jay Shetty, Lewis Howes, Amy Purdy, Lindsey Stirling,  and so much more.

And greatness was indeed achieved! Just a few months after joining Toastmasters, I excelled winning “Best Speaker” for a speech on David Bowie. Then I auditioned to do a workshop, “Be Your Own Hero” which was based on my upcoming book, “Be Extra-Ordinary: 10 Ways To Become Your Own Hero.”

Unexpectedly, I’ve also made a few friends at Toastmasters, that I go to lunch with; and some who have come see me speak!

Which brings me to ….

Dreams, Friends, and Love are right at the top … I’m always counting my blessings for the amazing friends that come into my life; especially those that I grow closer to each year. That goes for my husband too. My BEST friend ever — the person I want to spend time with more than anyone else. I’m so blessed to have people in my life I can share my dreams with. People I can cheer on too and watch them grow. My tribe. My high-five tribe!

Which brings me to …

Do you see Bright Ideas? Oh, I have many! Many which didn’t work out — yet. But it’s so fun throwing them out there to friends who believe in you. Going for lunch meetings with minds of greatness. These are my PEERS! I can’t believe it. Sometimes I have to ask myself, “Am I dreaming?”

Do you see the rainbow? Just a few days ago, I saw the first FULL rainbow I ever saw in my life. People hate NJ because of all the rain. But I LOVE it! As a writer, I love spending time inside, writing during a storm. One night after a storm, around dusk, the time I love best. My husband and I were taking a walk — and there it was, a full rainbow! It took my breath away.

The other stuff you see in the dream board is more vague and personal. Some day I may speak about it, but most likely won’t. As honest and open as I am, there’s a side to me that’s insanely mysterious that people will never find out about.

That said, I’m thrilled that I’ve grown so much in my spiritual journey — and have a long way to go; which is why I am pro-aging and you’ll NEVER hear me longing for youth. I’m having such a beautiful love affair with my aging self!

LIFE IS AMAZING. I AM BLESSED! ❤

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing, and motivational speaking engagements. She is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261

Welcome to the Family, Sammy!

Published May 14, 2019 by Maryanne

DSCF3551.JPGOur little Sammy

One month ago today, I brought 9-year-old Sammy into our family.

I went to St. Hubert’s Animal Shelter (https://www.sthuberts.org/animals-available-for-adoption) with a different intention. They were hosting a spring shopping event, but nothing struck me. Since St. Hubert’s is a half hour from where I live, I wasn’t ready to drive home yet so I asked to see the cats that were up for adoption.

At home was another cat named Nicholas. He was a stray that my husband and I took in about a month after my second cat Derick had to be put down, at the ripe old age of 19.

Nicholas is a dream. He’s smart, cuddly, and loves to play. So I needed a cat that also liked to play and wouldn’t be taken advantage of by Nicholas. Nicholas wasn’t good with our beautiful feral Bennie who recently had to be put down because of a brain tumor. We ended up having to separate them, with Bennie upstairs, Nicholas downstairs, and a gate between them at the top of the stairs. Bennie was too passive, and Nicholas too dominant and possessive. It was heartbreaking. My husband and I wanted a house of peace and harmony. When I met him, I had Billy Cat and Derick. They were 7 and 9 at the time and both lived to 19. They were like brothers. They’d have occasional fights, but they were always together.

So, at St. Hubert’s, I straight out said, “I need a cat that won’t take shit from another cat.”

I was there for hours before I saw Sammy (then named Simba). He had confidence and swagger. Small at 11 pounds, compared to Nicholas at 14. He was not skittish. He was comfortable with being held and kissed.

Sammy was in the shelter — on and off — since he was a kitten. Two people brought him back because he had accidents outside the litter box. Looking back, so did Billy and Derick, so I knew what I was getting into.

St. Hubert’s offered a trial period of a week or two. After week two, I was so proud to officially adopt Sammy!

It was great because he got along with Nicholas from the start! I didn’t have to separate them. One month later, they are buddies and do everything together. Nicholas never used his cat bed, until Sammy started using it. Now the two sleep in their cat beds side by side. They eat together, sleep together, play together. And they both love to cuddle with Mommy and Daddy.

As for the litter box issue. Once or twice Sammy did have an accident. Once we moved the litter box away from the wall and gave it more of a center spot, he was fine. Cats are particular. You have to experiment with them.

All animals have their unique personalities. You have to work with them–what they like, what they don’t like, how you can pet them, how they like to be held. They are more than animals, they are little souls! When you figure them out, you have a friend for life. Sammy is a perfect little angel and we love him so much! ❤

Welcome to your FUREVER home Sammy!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for motivational speaking engagements and is the author of the following books: 

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: Ten Ways to Become Your Own Hero” will be available October 2019. To pre-order, go here: https://kicamprojects.com/shop/be-extraordinary/

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your copy, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Want-Be-Like-You/dp/1726273261