Most mornings, I am the fluff buckets food dispenser, and there is much vocal complaining if I am late to the task. Mornings are when the best stuff happens, if it’s going to happen. Mornings are when I sometimes appear with the cans of food, not just my scoop and the clinking of kibble into the dish. They know the sight of the can, understand completely that popping sound, and I cannot get it emptied into their glass bowls quickly enough to suit them. And no, Pumpkin, you do not get to lick the lid with the sharp edges and potentially cut your tongue. Silly kitty.

This morning I was late getting to the door. Hey guys, work happens! I have to answer the phone calls or the gravy train will cease completely. Not only no more treats, no more cans, but no more food. So stop whining; it’s only 10 minutes and I know you’re not going to starve. But I feel guilty so I reach for the canned food. I am a poor pet parent, maniupulated and guilted into giving them the good stuff because I was late with breakfast.

Every morning I think about the future while I am putting out their food. Cat food – could I ever actually EAT that crap? If things got so horrific, could I pick up a fork and eat that for my own meal? Let me just say, I detest the smell of cat food. Dry stuff, wet stuff, treat bags … it all reeks as far as I am concerned. But I love those fluffy monsters, so I hold my breath and fill the bowls or hold the treats as they delicately take them from my fingers. But actually eat it myself? I cannot imagine it happening; starvation seems far more likely. However, I am not hungry now, have an overflowing pantry and freezers full of people food, so it is easy for me to say that I would not go there if I ran out of choices. Thinking about the smell of it, though, is my new motivation to not fall back into shopping addiction, for all that stuff I think I want and have absolutely no need. The smell is enough to keep my on the living below our means bandwagon. As I start really thinking about 2015 goals, with potential for reduced income and a strong desire to reduce our mortgage debt and increase our savings, feeding the fluff buckets each morning is becoming more resolved to stick to the plan and achieve our financial goals.

Motivation. Positive reinforcement. I will take it where I find it.

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