Consider this a birth announcement of sorts.

Yes, our Italian cat family has grown from two to three with the addition of little Olivia! And all three are rescue cats. Francesca (on the right above) was given her name when she lived in California because she would one day be an Italian cat. We scooped up Oscar from a group of feral kittens in Umbria over six years ago. Go figure, we gave an America cat an Italian name and an Italian cat an American name.

Olivia arrived with this year’s olive harvest.

Hence, the name. In the center photo above you’ll see how Olivia announced herself and said: “You’d better take me home!” Yep, as we were untangling and preparing the olive-gathering net, she plopped herself dead center. My friend and gifted photographer, David Spagnolo, captured this image. I immediately fell in love. So, I packed her up and brought her to Treviso where she is in the final stretches of being brought up to speed on her health.

Yes! A big Italian cat family.

We’re now a family of five, so I think we’re maxed out. Though I love that cats religiously use a litter box (well, unless they want to express displeasure or have a urinary tract infection), daily maintenance of scooping and keeping the kitty bathroom clean takes dedication. Then there is the hair. We now have special vacuum cleaners for that. But, the love and affection, not to mention the endless entertainment they provide, is priceless.

A constant reminder to be present.

I calm down just watching any of our cats. They are so in the moment—something I’m still learning. Our animal partners can teach us so much if we don’t just view them as possessions that exist solely to entertain us according to our varying whims. Our cats are gifts. I’m certain they lower my blood pressure and open the gates to a great influx of feel-good chemicals (way better than checking social media for a quick high!).

Now, join me for a quick video of an up close and personal introduction of our beautiful cat family!

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Click here to learn more about moving your cat to Italy!