Aby-a-Day – December 31: Happy New Year!

Well, we’ve made it through another year, Abyfriends. Thank you for all your support, friendship and comments.

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Jacoby says, “NyanNyanNyanNyanNyanNyanNyanNyanNyanNyanNyanNyanNyan…”

Other People’s Abys – When the sun shone, the poison flower breathed cold

Deborah Feltham, of Glendoveer Abyssinians, shared this story on one of the Aby lists, reminding us of the dangers of plants in the house.

I had bought a very fancy Pointsetta that I was told is hybridized nowadays and no longer poisonous. I brought this rather costly ornamental plant and put it on my coffee table. Fortunately (I guess) I had to work most of Xmas and 2 days before I was already too tired to make it to my bedroom and fell asleep on the sofa. I woke to find Endora chewing on the plant. Thinking it was a safe plant, I made her leave it alone and fell back to sleep. I went to work that night and when I got home next morning I found Endora VERY sick. I watched her head roll to one side and she appeared to have rigors so I grabbed her (which seemed to rouse her some) and rushed her to the vet. By the time we got to the vet she was waking up but the vet felt she ‘may’ have had a seizure. She had a temp at that point and her heartrate was high. Inside her mouth her lips and gums were very red. We had a ton of bloodwork done and the vet called poison control (I had brought the plant with me to the vet).

The bloodwork showed that she was not experiencing any kidney issues, and poison control said that the plant IS irritating and likely caused the red gums, but because I got her in right away she would be okay. Long story short, Endora is now fine, the plant is adopted out to apetless home, and I will never, ever, have another. I have no idea what possessed me to bring this thing into my home anyway as it is not something I would normally do! Vet costs are incredibly high here and the bloodwork alone was $250, so you can only imagine how costly this plant was, never mind how much it ‘could’ have cost!!!

If someone tells you that the plants today are hybridized, PLEASE avoid them anyway!! While they may not kill your pet, they can definitely make them very sick 😩 Endora is going to be on antibiotics for a couple of weeks because of the irritation to her mouth and we are planning to repeat her bloodwork ‘just in case’ later on, but right now she is back to normal.

Remember, too, with spring coming up, that all members of the lily family are extremely poisonous. Some varieties, even the pollen can kill a cat – and this goes for cut flowers as well as potted, living plants. If you make any new year’s resolutions, keeping plants out of the house, for the sake of your cats, is a very good one to make.

Aby-a-Day – December 30: What are you doing New Year’s Eve? (Fashion Friday)

One of Jacoby’s Christmas presents was a burgundy tuxedo from BaxterBoo.

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I couldn’t resist it! It was on sale and only cost $14!

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It’s actually a harness, too, which is convenient. It came with its own matching bowtie and top hat…but of course Jake doesn’t need those; he has a much nicer tie and hat already.

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I know the top hat will look fantastic with his tux, but I’m not sure how the dickey will work with the harness-front of the tuxedo. The green silk tie will look amazing, though. And there’s nothing that says he can’t wear a regular tie with a tux.

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I really like the burgundy colour of this tuxedo.

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Someday, I want to get dressed up in one of my fanciest cocktail dresses and actual high heels and go out somewhere with him. It’s actually easier to get him dressed up than it is to get my husband to wear a suit and tie!

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However, the only thing any of us are doing New Year’s Eve is watching the fireworks over Boston Harbor. Hopefully, it won’t be too cold tomorrow night!

I Can Has Cheezburger: Cyoot kitten alert!

Today, I Can Has Cheezburger featured what looks like a red silver Aby kitten.

Aby-a-Day – December 29: Mom! Hey Mom! Watch me! Are you watching? Mom! Watch me!

Jacoby has a great sense for cameras. By which I mean, if he sees me taking pictures, or if he hears the shutter going off, he is there.

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It doesn’t seem to matter if it’s my actual camera or the camera on my iPhone; he hears the shutter sound (real or simulated) and he just goes to town.

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“Lookit me, Mom! I’m scratching! Did you get that? Do you need me to do it again?”

Incensed, Abyssinianly-Speaking

Lisa-Maria, keeper of the Mooners, posted this holiday cautionary tale on one of the Aby lists:

I am not big into perfumes or strong scents. I like things, places, people, and yes, cats, to be and smell clean. “Clean” is not an overpowering thing in my olfactory enterprise, it is inviting, pleasant, and welcoming. Nowhere do I practice this definition more so than in my home, where I want things clean so I can tell when something is not. When someone–and by “someone” I do mean feline–barfs, poops, or pees either in or out of a designated area (and while I can train any cat to roll over on command, I have yet to get any single one of them to make a beeline for a toilet bowl when they feel a retch coming on. Strange, since so many millions of college students seem to know this as second nature), I want to detect it so I can remove it promptly.

On weekends at home I do, every now and then, light up a mildly scented candle, or enjoy the woody smell of burning logs in the fireplace. With that in mind, I purchased a Scentsy warmer, a popular item that diffuses scent by means of a light bulb heating fragrance-embedded wax cubes. I had heard great things about this product, my friends both in and out of the cat fancy love it, and not only are there a vast array of warmer designs to fit any decorating theme, there are also lots of great fragrances to choose from. I was delighted with my Scentsy warmer, and while purchasing it at a cat show, I also picked up a large variety of the scented wax cubes. Though I had not actually used the Scentsy yet, I was eagerly awaiting a chilly winter weekend at home to plug it in and melt my first cube of fragrant wax.

Therefore, I was rather surprised, no I was downright shocked, when I walked through my door after arriving home from work one day and was overpowered by “Autumn Sunset”, “Embers”, “Echo,” “Pomegranate Morning”, “Festival of Trees,” and a hairball two feet from the doorway that smelled vaguely of “Cozy Fireside.”

Combined, the mob of fragrances did a great deal to suggest that I had fallen into a terribly deep, smothering compost pile from which I would never crawl out.

I stepped over the “Cozy Fireside” dried hairball and, walking further into my house, saw that each of the plastic holders for the Scentsy fragrant wax cubes had been bitten into, and were spread all over the house.

Repeatedly bitten into.

This is the sort of evidence that tells me that one cat first bit into each of the plastic holders, realized that not even “Pomegranate Morning” offered any type of true feline promise, and left the hard plastic containers for the other cats to each have a go at and discover the same thing. Once each clear plastic container was riddled with bites and deemed a letdown, then the only value the containers had was as hockey puck-like amusements for bored Abyssinians. No doubt, as each fragranced wax package sailed across the floor, down the stairs, and under the sofa and chairs, the delightful scents within escaped, coalesced, and thus became one huge, unbearable, undesirable, and unforgettable stench. This was not a “clean” smell, this was the smell from hell.

Although I do feel there is some commercial potential for “Cozy Fireside” alternative fuel light-able hairballs, don’t be surprised if you find a brand new contemporary Scentsy warmer in an upcoming show raffle.

When asked who she thought the instigator was, Lisa-Marie said, “Twyla Mooner is almost always, without fail, the ‘ringleader’ of any package opening. Her daughter LuLu is almost always the lead in any packaging/mailing tape chewing-off and spitting out. LuLu’s son and daughter, Banjo and Danna respectively, have the lead on most ‘gravity experiments’ involving heavy or breakable objects proving to be so. Twyla’s other daughter, Racy Mooner, is the one primarily responsible for locking herself behind closed doors, eventually being missed, and eventually being rediscovered.”

It’s nice to know that every Aby has their own special job, isn’t it?

Other People’s Abys – It’s only an Aby moon

You may recall my post last month about Hitails Banjo Mooner, who was named 3rd Best Cat at the CFA National Show this year. And I’d also posted Hitails Racy Mooner’s charming Halloween costume.

Lisa-Marie has sent me photos of Banjo and also his mom, Lulu:

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“One is of his last show as a kitten in October, where he was receiving Best Kitten from judge Tracy Petty,

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and the other I snapped tonight as he was running around. I think he looks quite a bit like his grandmother Twyla,

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and also here is his mother LuLu Mooner. I have a sneaking suspicion that you just might be hearing more about Mr. Banjo…”

I for one cannot wait!

Aby-a-Day – December 28: Wordless Wednesday (Watch the Mouse-Birdy!)

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Other People’s Abys – More Abys in Cars

Oh, my, what have I started?

Kim, the person who belongs to Jacoby’s Uncle Clancy and his cousin Finn, writes:

So, of course I have traveling pics of my boys, too LOL!
Finnegan much prefers to be out of his carrier in the car – he’s on lock down until we hit the highway for most trips – because he loves to gawk out the windows and freak out the cars passing us. Passengers will look over and see a ruddy aby screaming at them, because you just know he’s talking the entire time.

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Clancy, however, will snuggle down and chill in the kitty cube that always travels with him – he’s an awesome car passenger… silent and most times asleep within 20 minutes!

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I wish Jake took after his uncle and not his cousin! As I’ve posted in the past, he feels the need to comment on every single thing he sees and feels…

Aby-a-Day – December 27: The Cat-a-Pole

Once of the Abys’ favourite gifts was the Cat-a-Pole.

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As you could probably imagine.

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I read about this fabulous new toy from Moderncat, and I have to say, it was an awesome recommendation.

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It has a “mouse-bird” lure and is designed to move randomly and unpredictably. It also has a “covered” string set-up that keeps it from getting tangled. It also seems to keep the cats – well, at least the Abys – from getting distracted by the string the toy is tied to. They only play with the “Mouse-Bird,” not the string.

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The tangle-free architecture also means that you can tie the Cat-a-Pole to a chair leg or a lamp while you aren’t home and the cats can play with it unsupervised. They can’t choke on it or get entangled.

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I have a feeling that’s going to make it a big hit.

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I just hope I can MacGyver a way to attach it that is smarter than the average Aby…

Other People’s Abys – Cousin Toki, the backseat driver

I got this email and photo from Julie, Toki Nantucket’s mom:

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“That ‘Other People’s Abys’ post with the Aby in the car reminded me of this, so I had to send it to you. This is Toki complaining in the car. We were stuck in traffic. The funny thing is, this was on the way home after the Blessing of the Animals. Toki got blessed by a priest at the Church of St Francis for the Feast of St Francis. He was really good the whole time, even when the priest put the holy water on his head. And even though there were dogs everywhere. On the way home though, I guess he had enough. He complained LOUDLY the whole way home. I put him back in his carrier after the traffic let up. But he doesn’t look very holy here, does he? Hehe.”

I think he looks like he’s saying, “I said to go through the Park, not take 5th! Now we’re gonna get trapped going uptown at rush hour!”

Aby-a-Day – December 26: Happy Holidaze (Hipstamatic Monday)

Hipstamatic’s Incredibooth came out with a new “Holidaze” booth, just in time for Christmas.

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So I figured, when better to try it out than while opening gifts?

Other People’s Abys – “The horse knows the way to carry the sleigh”…but the cat might just kill you in your sleep

Had to share this photo of Ora, the Aby, from Flickr:

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The caption:
“I LOVE THE CAR
Imagine this face meowing at you for an hour and a half from the back seat. It’s not awesome.”

Well, it sure LOOKS awesome.

Aby-a-Day – December 26: A very Hipstamatic Christmas (Hipstamatic Monday)

As I said last Monday, Hipstamatic was made to take Christmas photos.

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I use Hipstamatic on random, so I never really know what the photos will look like until they “develop.” It’s kind of like the old film days.

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Kylie joined Jacoby for a few holiday snaps.

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Some of the super-saturated films, like Big Up, just enhance the lights on the tree.

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But the black and white films evoke the Christmases of my childhood.

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I love that one of the most technologically advanced mini-computers has spawned such a throwback art form.

Aby-a-Day – December 25: It’s Christmas All Over the Place!

Sometimes I think Christmas was made for Abyssinians.

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I mean, think about it: Christmas is all about helping, and helping is what Abys do best!

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Helping open presents…

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…helping make sure the boxes are all really empty once they’re open…

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…helping keep track of who gave what…

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…helping make sure scratching posts are put up properly…

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…helping try out new cat toys…

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…and just helping celebrate the holiday!

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Other People’s Abys – Sheba Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree

This is, quite probably, the most surreal holiday video you’ll see all year.

But it stars Sheba, the Abyssinian!

Merry Christmas!

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Happy holidays to all our Abyfriends…thank you for reading.

Aby-a-Day – December 24: The Abyssinian Santa Claus box trap

Jacoby is determined to catch Santa in the act this year.

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“He’ll never see me in here!”

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“Ha! I’m ready now! Santa won’t know what hit him!”

Other People’s Abys: Going For the Red Bird, No Matter How High

I just had to share this story from one of my Aby lists…

How are your Christmas decorations holding up?

Since we have a two story living room we have a 9 ft (artificial) tree. Last year this time, we had two little 4-month-old Aby boys who did try to climb the Christmas tree (we tied it to a nearby bannister so it would not fall over), but they only played with unbreakable ornaments within 2-3 feet. No activity we did not expect and we thought they were such nicely behaved kittens! This year’s Christmas card has a photo of Hobbes in last year’s tree.

This year they are 9.5 lbs and think they can jump over the moon. Louie regularly jumps 10 feet from the dining room through a bannister down to the living room floor even after I moved a chair there to make the jump shorter.
So I moved anything I did not want them to have up to the top 2-3 feet of the tree. Things like fake cardinals and some delicate lace ornaments we got in the Philippines. And my Basenji angel that goes on top.

The first day they lulled us into thinking that they again would be happy to play with stuff in the first 2-3 feet and maybe trying climbing a little.

The second night I woke up to some fierce growling near the bottom of the bed. Had a wildcat invaded the house? Kind of scary to hear such fierce sounds in your bedroom in the middle of the night. Turned on the light and
there was Hobbes hunkered down with a 7-inch cardinal ornament in his mouth, ears back and serious growls coming out with each breath. Slinking across the bed was Louie in stalk mode ready to take that prey away. If only I
kept a camera next to the bed!

As I moved to rescue the bird, Hobbes took off and ran with it into our closet where Louie grabbed it and got it as far at the staircase before I could catch him. This is not a little bird! Looks very oversized in a Aby mouth as they cannot get their teeth around the body but have to carry it by its tail. How on earth he could get it up two flights of stairs with his brother after him? Made me curious.

I went down to check out the tree and found a few ornaments knocked down but all the other cardinals were still up on top. I fastened the poor bird (not a feather out of place) up as far as I could reach and sat down on the
couch. The brothers paced around the tree. Within about 7 minutes Louie went to an end table about 3-4 feet from the tree…and then launched himself from there to another cardinal about 6-7 feet off the ground. He missed the
bird and sort of slid down the tree; this was when I noticed that where he slid there were no ornaments.. That’s where the pile on the floor had come from.

As he headed back for his next try I decided we really don’t need birds on the Christmas tree or cat Olympics at night. Made sure the boys watched me take them all off and put them in a box and I sat them outside the sliding
doors in the solarium. They watched those birds intently.

I think they may have connected a male cardinal who likes to dash himself against our master bath window with the ones on the tree. Finally he must have come inside. This morning when the cardinal was bonking against the
window they were more attentive than ever.

Merry Christmas everyone!

I guess I’m lucky that all Jacoby wants to do is chew on the tree! Although, I do wonder if he’d be more interested in the tree if he had been a kitten during Christmas, as his brother Gun-Hee and the two stars of this story were.

The best of all gifts around any Christmas tree: the presence of a happy family all wrapped up in each other.

Christmas is a time for families, and Jacoby’s family is very into the holiday spirit!

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Just look at Uncle Clancy’s festive nails!

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And here is Clancy with Santa…

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Of course, Cousin Finn gets to spend some facetime with the fat man, too. I need to take Jake to get his photo with Santa next year! As it turns out, Angell Memorial has an annual Santa photo fundraiser, which, somehow, I didn’t know about until…December 13. Sigh. Well, as we say in Boston, “there’s always next year!”

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Cousin Toki has a union suit to keep him warm on winter adventures. We haven’t had any snow since that freak storm at Halloween, but it’s been chilly here in the northeast.

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Of course, Toki also has plenty of festive garb.

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How adorable is this embroidered wool holiday hood!?

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I really want to get one for Jake…next year, perhaps. He has enough presents this year! Including some more clothing…

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…he just doesn’t know that, yet.