Re: Carrier - advice
When the cats were new to the house, we kept them in one of the bathrooms when we were away - for their safety and my sanity. The girls loved to sleep on top of the carrier (a rigid cloth one) - one of the highest points in the bathroom. We put their small blanket in the crate, with the door propped open.
Clean out the crate, with something like Simple Green. Wash any blankets or cushion. I would put the crate on the counter in th bathroom, with breakfast and dinner to be served served inside the crate - start close to the door and gradually move it further in every 2-3 days.
At some point, take Zaya on car rides - trips in the carrier and back home.
Patience and time.
Skin kids - Jason, Kevin, Allison
Canine kids - Bennett & Bailey (always in our hearts), Riley, Banker, Rogue and Boz
Feline kids - Zoey, Talley and Abra