Good news, everyone! Last Wednesday, I got my first Covid vaccination (#teampfizer)! However, it also kicked my butt for a few days; today is the first day my arm doesn’t feel like I was hit by a stick. So, here: have some random Hipstasnaps taken around the house. First we have Alfred and Izaak cuddled up next to Jacoby on my leg.
It’s interesting to see the pair-ups that occur amongst the cats. Dashiell and Alfred hang out together quite a bit.
So do Angel and Zak. Sometimes, it’s Angel’s choice…
…other times, not so much.
I wonder if I should be concerned about what Dash and Freddy are plotting…
Not quite sure what’s going on here. Moving on…
Lorelai looking at me hopefully. She always wants to go outside to run.
This was taken today. Zak was looking particularly smexy this afternoon.
The other day, we took the cats out. I was trying to capture the differences in their gaits.
I kind of managed to capture it on “film.”
Went we went out, I took the big camera with the long lens, and I captured all of them walking and running outside.
Here they are outside. I know, it’s 18 minutes long…but it’s interesting if you want to see their different movements outside
As I mentioned the other day, Dashiell is gradually becoming more comforatble outside.
You can see it in his eyes and in his gait.
He’s getting much braver. We still have to catch him and bring him outside – he doesn’t eagerly race out like the other three – but once he IS out, he enjoys it.
But look how incredibly shiny his coat is! I don’t remember Jacoby being quite this shiny. I think it’s because Dash eats more raw food. Jake refused to eat it. He would eat his other food and leave just the raw behind (kind of like Izaak in reverse). I can’t wait to take him to a cat show!
Our friend Kinsey shared some professional photos that were taken of Izaak’s brothers, Paulo and Keiko. I instantly knew what had to be done.
A family portrait, of course! Since all three boys came from Poland, I chose a Polish flag as my background.
Then I decided to set the scene…literally.
Finally, every portrait needs a frame, right? Can you tell who is who?
As you may remember, Dashiell isn’t as confident about being outside.
But he does seem more comfortable when he’s with the other cats.
So when Alfred started to run down the hill, Dash kind of followed him.
I mean, okay…Dash walked down the hill, he didn’t run.
But the fact that he went on the hill at all is a huge step for him!
Yesterday, I discovered something very sad. FooPets, the online game I discovered 11 years ago and fell in love with because it featured Abyssinians, has shut down completely. Rumour>/a> has it that when Flash stopped being supported, the game stopped working and/or the original creator (a veterinarian) just didn’t renew the domain. I used to have a shortcut on my browser and I accidentally clicked on it yesterday; trust me, do NOT try to visit the site. It now directs to some…unsavoury images.
I hadn’t really checked in on my flock of Abys since last year, but I always thought about them.
The main reason I stopped going to the site was because they got rid of my favourite thing, Heart Park, which is the closest thing I ever found to a cat-themed online role-playing game.
It was a simple game, really, but I liked it.
You could even have kittens!
I wish I had taken screenshots the last time I visited the site. My main apartment was a loft in Cambridge with a view of Boston! I never thought about it going away, so I never took any of that view.
We have a daily ritual where we watch reruns of Chicago Med and Chicago Fire. This is how Izaak likes to sit on me.
For some reason, Zak prefers to sit on my bare legs. Especially my knees.
It really doesn’t seem that comfortable of a way to cuddle, but he likes it. And he’s sound asleep, in case you were wondering.
Yesterday, we had Alfred walking.
Today, he is running! When he wants to, he can go pretty fast.
Because Freddy’s a bit of a chonk, and because I suspect he has mild asthma, he tend to run with his mouth open.
I feel so fortunate to live where we do, in an area where it’s safe to let them run free, without worrying about cars or large predators or birds of prey to worry about. And I love that the cats are smart enough to know that if they don’t stay close, they get put on the leash and they don’t get to run.
Following up on Thursday’s post about about Izaak’s bouncy gait, here is Alfred casually walking across the grass.
Freddy saunters when he walks with very little bounce.
You can see it in the line of his back.
He keeps it fairly level with each step.
Freddy walks like a cat on a mission.
Even when he’s only leisurely strolling down our hill.
This is what Freddy walking looks like from the front. Look at the determination in his eyes. He’s so intelligent, and you can see that in his face.
Remember back in January when I took I took those awesome winter photos of Izaak? Well, I was inspired when we were outside the other day; it was such a gorgeous, perfect spring day that I got an idea to put Zak in his tree and take some spring photos, and then take some more in the height of summer and autumn and make a four seasons thing.
Just one problem. On that outing, I was using my long lens, and the blossoms and sky were washed out and not nearly as bright as they actually were. I knew it when I took the photos. After I looked at them, I told Zak, “No worries. We can fix that in post.”
Because this is how the sky and blossoms really looked. But it’s a super-easy fix. Just cut out the washed out sky…
…add in the good background…
…brighten it up a bit, add a little blur, and…perfect! Stay tuned for summer!
I absolutely love watching Izaak run.
It’s so different from the way the Abys run.
It’s bouncier, somehow.
I’ve also noticed he has a tendency to curl up his tail as he runs, while the Abys’ tails are either straight up or straight out.
Zak’s got a swagger to his stride that the Abys just don’t have. They’re more about the speed.
And then Zak slows down to a businesslike trot.
He’s clearly a cat on a mission.
Earplane 1Z44K is taxiing down the runway after another successful flight.
After the successful landing, he is met by his faithful groundcrew.
Yesterday, Iris sent NEMO club members a draft of the flyer for our first post-Covid in-person show. It’s only open to exhibitors, and masks will be required unless eating or drinking. When I saw it, I knew what I had to do.
So here is the new, improved, mask-wearing Marlin doing his BBQ thing.
Here’s how it looks on the flyer itself. Not bad, eh?
As you know, Lorelai loves to go outside.
Her leash? Not so much.
Girl can throw some serious shade, though. I mean, it’s not Singapura stink-eye level, but it’s up there.
All my life, I thought boycats were more friendly, outgoing and social than girlcats. The females I had, apart from Crystal, were all aloof and, if we’re being honest, a little neurotic. Tessie and Kylie changed that preconception a bit, but they had their moments.
And then I met Lorelai.
We’ve been keeping her on a leash because of her heats, as you know. Which means when the neighbourhood children want to pet one of our cats, she’s kind of a sitting duck. Luckily, she doesn’t mind at all.
In Sweden, at least where we live, kids run around outside and play all day long, a lot like I did when I was a kid, (*Ahem*) in the 1970s. It’s nice to see, especially compared to how sheltered children are in the States. It’s also a little annoying; why do kids feel the need to SCREAM when they’re playing?
The last time we went outside, one of the kids asked Björn if they could hold Rory’s leash…and it lead to a little parade.
And Rory loved it.
It’s also really great PR for what cats as pets are capable of. Hopefully, when these children grow up, they’ll be cat people.
The other day, a friend posted an infomeme about dandelions. I think it has some very important things to know.
We are lucky that our område’s lawn is a natural mix of grass, moss, yarrow, clover, and many different flowers including dandelions. They don’t mow it super-short or super-often, so it gets really nice and natural. There’s also no sprinkler system. If it doesn’t rain, the grass turns brown…c’est la vie. It’s so much nicer than those perfect, manicured lawns in the States.
Dandelions are also wicked fun to gallop through. Just ask Izaak.
Since last Sunday was Mother’s Day, I thought I’d post this. I was always Daddy’s girl. Also a tomboy. Also hated dresses and pink. And dolls. That was Tabby, my version of a doll. They tried to give me dolls. I took their clothes off and put them on Tabby. This was 1969. You can see the look in my eyes…He’s taking the photo and I’m begging him through the lens to get me out of this and take me fishing or something.
This is where my love of Siamese, and by extension, purebreeds began. My dad’s sister had two: Bippie and her son Caesar. This is me napping with Caesar on my uncle’s lap. Also 1969.
This was my cat, Baby Puss, on Easter.
This is when I met Baby Puss in 1967. She is named after the Flintstones’ cat. We also had a black male cat named Bagheera. I was always an avid television watcher.
My mom was ALL ABOUT the matching outfits. This was for my aunt’s 25th anniversary up in Edmonton in 1971.
And, in case you’re wondering…this was my reaction when my dad tried to get a puppy.
Yesterday, I showed you our new neighbours, Randall and Beth, a pair of European Pied Flycatchers. They are very interesting little birds. And not only have we never seen them in our område before now, but we have had that little birdhouse up for three years and no bird has ever shown any interest in it until now.
But Beth and Randall have moved right in.
They appeared on Tuesday, so we named them after the characters on This is Us.
They rarely, if ever, land on the ground, so they are fairly safe from cats. But that didn’t stop Randall from doin’ a heckin’ concern when we went outside with the cats this afternoon.
The cats, however, were mostly oblivious to the bird couple above.
Izaak noticed their movement at some point whilst we were outside.
He watched them flying around for a bit.
But I think he knew there was no chance. We will have to be careful when we take them out after the fledglings emerge.