One of my favorite books to read with Juliet is The Fire Cat by Esther Averill. We owned this one for a while now, but we never seem to get tired of it. It's the story of Pickles the cat.
"Pickles was a young cat. His paws were big. And he wished to do big things with them."
You can probably guess what big things Pickles will end up doing, but the story of his getting there is the best part. He starts out homeless, living in a barrel, chasing little cats around. Then he has a crisis and decides to turn his life around. He goes to live in the firehouse and must prove his worth to the chief. He works hard, changes his behavior towards other cats, and eventually saves a cat from the very tree he had his crisis in earlier in the book.
There is symbolism, suspense, foreshadowing, and all that good literary stuff that I love AND a fire cat. You can't beat it.
I've been wanting to make our cat, Penny, a fire hat like Pickles for a while. Using some trash, we were able to fashion one. The black cup is a chick-fil-a fruit bowl and the cardboard is an old pasta box. I cut the shapes and then cut some black construction paper to cover up the purple.
My cousin used to have a cat that would let us pick it up and dress it in baby clothes. We'd put bonnets on it, dresses, etc. Penny is not one of those cats, though. Here is my first attempt at placing the hat on her head. This is as close as I could get it before she would bat it off.
After several attempts and many giggling fits from Juliet who thought this was the funniest thing ever, Penny and I managed to reach a compromise: I could place it on her back without having her swat it off.
We really had our heart set on her wearing it, so we decided to try bribery. A few cat treats occupied her long enough to let us place the hat on her and take a few quick pictures. But as soon as the snacks were gone, she knocked the hat off and ran away to her favorite hiding spot.
Sorry, Penny. No more costumes for a few weeks--I promise.