Grandma Ida wanted the sign to have an outline of a house, with the house number painted on it. Grandpa thought just the number would do, on a not-to-big sign. There were suggestions for floral designs, birds, all kinds of things, until little Deli said “Why not a picture of cats? Like mine – the one with the three cats and snow falling?”
They all looked at each other, stunned at the simplicity of the idea, and amazed at how utterly perfect it was. Mother Camille (Cammy, for short) picked Deli up and hugged him.
“Son, you are the smartest boy in the world!” she exclaimed. “That picture would be perfect – though there are more than three Katts who will be living in the new house. It will certainly stand out, and all of our friends will be able to find us easily. Who’ll paint the sign?” she asked the others as she put Deli down.
“Cousin Eartha is a very good artist, and she painted Deli’s picture. Why not ask her?” Tabitha (aka Tabby) asked.
“Good idea, Eartha,” Father Thom said. “You’ll see her at school, so you can talk to her about it. We’ll supply the board and paint. Maybe she would paint ‘The Katts’ on it somewhere, just so everyone will know. I wonder what our new neighbours will think?” he chuckled.
The next few weeks were very busy as they packed, moved, and unpacked again. Then they went to work decorating the new house for Christmas, inside and out. At last, they would have enough room for everyone, with room to spare for guests. Tabby was really happy, because now, Eartha would be able to come for an overnight stay, and they could have their fill of girl talk and giggles. The finishing touch to the decorating was when the new sign was put in place at the end of the driveway. It was very easy to see, and quite decorative, and they were all very proud of little Deli for his idea. “Now, no one will get lost trying to find us!” Grandma Ida said in satisfaction.
Christmas day dawned bright and sunny, with a new blanket of dazzling white snow covering everything. Tabby and Deli were up very early, eager to open their gifts. Mother made them get dressed and have breakfast first, then they opened their stockings. There was enough in them to keep the children busy for some time, while Mother and Grandma Ida prepared the dinner.
Around one o’clock, Aunt Lilith (also called Lil) and Uncle Madison (Mad) arrived, loaded down with gifts and trailed by Eartha and Edison, their twin cousins. After all the excited greetings, and hugs and kisses, the children dressed and went outside to make a snowman. Many snowballs were thrown, and a lot of tussling and rolling around in the snow interrupted the procedure, but eventually their work of art was finished. Eartha had directed the building, so it really was a very artistic snowman. He wore a red and green scarf, and a top hat with a bunch of holly stuck in the band. He had four bright brass knobs down his chest for buttons, the toes of an old pair of shoes stuck out at the bottom, and he carried a cane hooked to one arm. All the adults came out to admire him. Then everyone went inside. Dinner was the usual feast – turkey and all the trimmings, and they all did justice to it. Finally, when the table was cleared and the dishes put in the dishwasher, they gathered in the living room around the tree.
“Hooray!” Deli shouted. “At last we can open our gifts!” everyone laughed, and Thom put on his Santa hat and proceeded with the distribution. The large pile of gaily wrapped parcels gradually shrank, until they were all gone. In their place was an even bigger pile of torn wrapping and empty boxes. Thom and Uncle Mad put all of the mess into a big garbage bag and Thom took it to the kitchen.
When he returned to the living room, Thom settled back in a comfortable chair with a glass of wine at his elbow, and sighed. “What a great way to start life in our new Katt house!” he said with a smile.
“I’ll drink to that,” Uncle Mad said, raising his glass. They all raised their glasses and toasted the new home, knowing that they would be happy there for a long time.