Twenty Three

A special post by Andrea Kanakredes, RN, MSN.

Oh, how my heart skipped when I learned you were conceived. It was pure joy, to know another babe was on the way. I asked dad, “Girl or boy?” His answer came easily. “Girl. They are sweeter and finer.” Such a sweet, kind answer.

shaded yet bright: Elizabeth flashing eyes and earrings (age 5)

Our second princess, Elizabeth, is twenty three. Dad and I are so proud of who you have become. Gorgeous, inquisitive, talented. We so love how close you are with Deborah. And, with Tara. A heart full of love.

The chapter you’ve just begun will prove to be most challenging of your life. Dad and I know you will give your best effort, learning and perfecting your skills. Whatever your life’s work may be – physician, rancher or equestrian – you will be successful.

kindred spirits: Elizabeth and Lilith on an autumn walk (JN Ranch, October 2016)

Another beautiful princess, we are so blest. A princess who still slips us love notes and listens to our hearts flutter with love.

My perfect princess, your dad’s perfect princess.

Happy 23, baby!

mom and dad


Happy Birthday Meezers!

Birthday week continues.

Though they’ve been gone to the Rainbow Bridge for awhile, we still mark the occasion of celebrating their special day, Dino and Pebbles. Littermates, they came to live with us two weeks apart. First was Dino – a very happy, very friendly Siamese-mix boy. Then came Pebbles – a more cautious seal-point Siamese girl. Both had white mittens.

In play, they were inseparable.

Dino and Pebbles: checking what’s under the carpet runner

They were kitty blurs in motion.

the Dino blur

the Pebbles blur

After playing or doing other cat stuff, they often would relax and nap together.

sweet innocents: the towel covers the hole they made in the arm of the couch

In kitten life, they perfected the ability of taking nearly the entire bed for themselves during the overnight. Dino and Pebbles also pioneered “the early breakfast” concept – that’s the breakfast served at 1:30 am. “No!” was not an acceptable option in this regard. Regular breakfast came between 7:00 and 7:30 am, with a bacon snack at 10:30 am.

They made our home complete. Perfect companions, perfect love.

Happy Birthday Dino & Pebbles!

mom, dad, & girls

Photos: From the Two Cats Two archive. They were taken using a Canon FTb 35 mm SLR with Kodak Gold film (ASA 200).


Birthdays are the most special of days within our family. They tie the days of good cheer and good memories together, from one year to another. Today, my dad celebrates his 88th.

Tonight, Laurie, Andrea and I will celebrate with him. It’ll be a cookout featuring ribeye steaks, and a chocolate cake for dessert. And, may be an adult beverage or two.

frosted and finished: another Laurie chocolate dessert creation after a long day of doctoring (Aug 20 2018)

Laurie made a batch of chocolate cupcakes on Sunday for the girls. They too will be celebrating from their condo. The girls, moreover, will be impressed their dad strung 300 white mini-lights on the grandpa’s cottage porch for the occasion.

My dad is doing well. He’s in good health and good spirits. Those are the things that matter the most.


Happy Birthday Musketeers!

They came from very humble beginnings.

A tightly knitted trio of littermates. Their mom cat, Miss Grey, a Russian Blue Mix, teaching them how to live in the outdoors. Miss Grey taught them where safe harbor could be found.

Today, the Musketeers – Maxie, Midnight and Tuxie – are 13 years of age.

Maxie the brave

Midnight, the little sister

Tuxie, true blue loyal and forever loved

The sudden loss of Tuxie, two years ago, was a test of the Musketeer ethos of “one for all”. Maxie and Midnight met and passed the test.

the Musketeer baby kittens (Nov 2005)

Happy Birthday Musketeers!

mom and dad

Candles: Twenty Four

She has a way about her.

Very kind, very loving, very polite. A romantic, Tara says, “It is important not to become a hopeless one. True romance, true love arrives when it is least expected.” In the affairs of the heart, “it is finding the one, the one who will love you and bring you great happiness forever.”

favorite peony: paeonia lactiflora ‘Gardenia’

fallen: a giant rose fallen from a trellis bush (Jun 2018)

path of pink: a walk among the roses (Jun 2018)

Poised and confident, Tara is a beautiful young woman. She has taken the success in her equestrian pursuits in stride. Her greatest enjoyment is being with her horses. The simplicity Tara has found in life, much of the credit goes to her mom, Laurie.

Her songs of the moment is a collection from Peter Cetera. Naturally, “If You Leave Me Now”, “You Are The Inspiration” and “Hard To Say I’m Sorry” are part of the collection. It is his duet with Amy Grant on “Next Time I Fall” that has become Tara’s favorite for the moment.

Next time I fall in love, I’ll know better what to do
Next time I fall in love, Oh oh oh, the next time I fall in love
The next time I fall in love
It will be with you

We love you too.

Happy 24, Tara!

mom and dad


Twenty Four

A special post by Andrea Kanakredes, RN, MSN.

In one moment, it is their first word. In another, it is their first step. Then, their very first day of school. Children grow so fast.

serious: Deborah after the first day of second grade (Aug 2002)

Our baby princess, Deborah, is twenty four. The years have slipped by much too quickly, especially the past few. Dad and I are so proud of who you have become. Beautiful, intelligent, talented easily come to mind.

Soon, you will begin a new chapter in your life. It will be the most challenging step you will take. Both dad and I know you will give your best effort. We know you will work hard to perfect your skills. In whatever you will do as your life’s work, you will be successful – whether as a physician, rancher or equestrian.

pure love: Deborah kissing her Comet (North Ranch, Mar 2018)

Always, you will be our first, beautiful princess. A princess who still quietly slips her hand into ours, and embraces ever so tightly.

My perfect princess, your dad’s perfect princess.

Happy 24, baby girl!

mom and dad