Aby-a-Day – 9 Juli 2020: The “Flippy-Flippy”

A while back, someone in the Singapura Facebook group I’m in asked “Do other people’s Singas do this move that [mine] does? It’s a three part move: (1) downward dog stretch; (2) slow roll/fall onto her side; (3) on her side, stretches out her entire body until she’s 3 feet long, rolls around. With part 3 completed, she returns to normal size, and gets up and goes about her business. I call this move ‘flippy-flippy.'”

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I posted about Izaak’s hallway rolling habit last year, but that was before I had a name for it.

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The other day, I happened to catch him doing it on the pavement.

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It’s amazing how bendy Zak can be!

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Not sure why the flippy-flippy requires earplanes, but okay.

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He’s such a funny little guy.

Aby-a-Day – 8 Juli 2020: Wordless Wednesday (Sand battle!)

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Aby-a-Day – 5 Juli: A walk outside (Cinema Sunday)

When we take out recyclables, we often take Izaak, Lorelai and Alfred with us. I made a little movie of us walking over there. I also tried to capture the difference between the Singapura gait and the Abyssinian gait, so there’s some slo-mo incorporated in the video.

On the way back, I took still photos.

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For a moment there, I thought Rory was going to go down the slide…

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…but, no…

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…she took the stairs like a perfect lady.

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Zak on the other hand…

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…Zak barrelled down the hill next to the slide like a bat out of hell.

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I had tried to get Dashiell to come along with us. He was at the door…but I couldn’t get him to go out on his own. Since we were going to the recycling bins and not just outside, I didn’t force him.

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When he saw Zak and Freddy having fun outside when we got back to our building, I think he regretted his decision. Ah, well…maybe next time, Dash.

Aby-a-Day – 2 Juli 2020: My birthday present finally arrived! (Thursday Things)

My birthday was a month ago, but my big gift from Björn arrived today: a Baby Yoda doll!

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Izaak (rather amusingly) was quite interested in the little green doll.

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The Baby Yoda doll also makes sounds.

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Lorelai did not like the sounds!

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I have a little Lego-compatible Baby Yoda in his Sphere, so…yeah.

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He (or she) has a cup of bone broth and a Sorgan frog.

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The detail on this doll is spectacular. Hard to believe it’s meant for children over three.

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Rory still doesn’t trust it, though.

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I love it, though. Thank you, Björn!

Aby-a-Day – 28 Juni 2020: The Mighty Izaak (Singapura Sunday)

When the cats go outside, the Abyssinians bolt out the door and run as fast and as far as they can.

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But not Izaak. Zak…well, the best way to describe it is, Zak marches out the door and onto the grass.

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He also loves to hunt when he’s outside. Wonder what he sees?

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Oh! A honey bee! Zak, please leave that little guy alone…we need all the bees we can get!

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That’s not to say that Zak doesn’t run. He does.

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He’s usually chasing one of the other cats, but oh, he runs.

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He’s such a sturdy little man. As I mentioned before, someone compared him to Ron Swanson…and apart from the lack of mustache, it’s an apt comparison.

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I mean, look at him.

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Finally, I have this photo. In my opinion, this is Zak’s first iconic photo. Jacoby had a few: Sitting on the carousel, posing in his hat and boots, and the one of him wearing his parka in the snow, among others

Aby-a-Day – 27 Juni 2020: An Angel watching from on high (Swedish Saturday

On one of our forays outside, Angel was on the balcony, and, as I knew she was happy there, I didn’t bring her out with us.

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And I was right. She joined us, in her way.

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She perched on the balcony and watched the other cats below.

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She was perfectly happy to be with us, but by herself.

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I love this photo of Dashiell looking back up at her.

Aby-a-Day – 26 Juni 2020: “Face masks in public spaces do not provide any greater protection to the population” (Fashion Friday)

You may recall my post back in April about cat-themed face masks to wear as a defence against spreading Covid-19. Even though Sweden has been famously against face masks (I went out shopping today and saw ZERO masks apart from my own), the tide may be changing; Dr. Tengele may be changing his opinion on masks (finally).

The above mask came from a link on Facebook. It’s cute, and a double layer of cotton. Unfortunately, it’s too hot to wear in the summer.

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I love these two masks featuring a (Singapuras and BLUE Abyssinians wearing masks…but they are also double-layer (and have a pocket for a charcoal filter), and way too hot to wear in summer.

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my favourite mask was made by my friend Airie of Simply Sphynx. It’s a single layer cotton mask with a cute kitty print on.

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It’s very breathable and comfortable to wear – my favourite thing about this mask is that it doesn’t loop around the ears like all the others. When you wear glasses, that can be a real issue.

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But nobody reads this blog to see photos of me, so…

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…Here is Izaak wearing the Singapura mask.

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I absolutely love that this mask features BLUE Abyssinians.

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Lorelai…not so much.

Aby-a-Day – 24 Juni 2020: Wordless Wednesday (Lorelai found a feather!)

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Aby-a-Day – 22 Juni 2020: Izaak and the blanket (Mischievous Monday)

The other day when we went outside, one of our neighbours had left a blanket under a tree. We picked it up and hung it on the rug beating frame. There was a bit of a breeze, and the blanket had a fringe, so Izaak started playing with it.

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Or attacking it. It’s open to interpretation.

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Sometimes I forget that Zak is only two years old…Logan was such a little old man, even though he only lived 13 months, I am always surprised at how playful Zak is.

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Look at that concentration. That blanket is going to regret its life choices.

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It was so much fun watching him “hunt” the blanket.

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Bite! Bite! Bite!

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It’s amazing how much fun cats can have with ordinary household objects.

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It was funny that he used his mouth more than his hands. I think Abys would be more handsy and less mouthy.

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…And just like that, Zak was done.

Aby-a-Day – 21 Juni 2020: Izaak and his family (Singapura Sunday)

Today on Facebook, Anna (Izaak’s breeder) posted a photo of her newest litter of kittens.

Turns out, these kittens are Zak’s full siblings! Their father is Tinytoy Rus Mafoj*PL
and their mother is Angelina Minimali*PL.

Zak also has two older, famous brothers. Paolo and Keiko, five years older than Zak, are famous for their adventures. And they had another adventure (of sorts) today: Paolo and Keiko got neutered!

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It wasn’t long before they escaped their Cones of Shame, but their human Kinsey sent me this video of them. Just click on the image to watch the video in another tab on Flickr.

It’s so cool to be part of such an illustrious family!

Aby-a-Day – 20 Juni 2020: Happy Gotcha Day! (Special Saturday)

Two years ago today, I travelled to Stockholm to collect our little Izaak.

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His harness was almost too big for him, even adjusted to the smallest size..

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He was so tiny…

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Zak and Lorelai bonded over leftovers. This is the day after he arrived.

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Two days after that, he had his first outside adventure.

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He quickly discovered his favourite, IKEA mice. This was his fifth day with us.

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The day after that…

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…we had our first trip to the vet…

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…our first visit to DjurMagazinet…

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…and our first walk home. Little Zak did a LOT in his first week with us!

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But it isn’t just Zak’s Gotcha Day. Fifteen years ago today, we answered a Craigslist ad and brought Kylie home from Quincy. We had to stop at Petco on the way home to buy a carrier!

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This is her and Tessie today, back in Boston. I can’t believe she is 15! And, in a month and a half, Tessie will be 17!

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But wait, there’s more! 29 years ago, today, I got Harri, my very first Siamese. We were on our way to an SCA event, and we picked him up on the way.

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He camped with us for his first several days with us before we got him home. That’s probably why he was such a good traveller.

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He was 14 years old when we got Kylie…but he was very fond of her. Seems that 20 June is a good day to get a kitten!

Aby-a-Day – 19 Juni 2020: Glad Midsommar, allihopa! (Fashion Friday)

This weekend is one of Sweden’s two most important holidays: Midsommar, which celebrates the Summer Solstice.

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Much like Jul, the Winter Solstice celebration, the main celebration is on the day before the actual holiday. This year, Midsommmarafton is today.

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One of the Midsommarafton tradition is the making and wearing of flower crowns. You may recall last Midsommar, when everyone modeled a silk flower crown.

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So, the other day when I was outside with the cats, I sat on the lawn and made a little daisy chain with some buttercups woven in for more colour. Izaak came over to see what I was doing.

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So, when I finished the crown, I put it on his head to try it out. It wasn’t great. Sigh. Sometimes I miss the way Jacoby would pose with ANYthing on his head.

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I posted the top photo on this IS an airport, please announce your departure: aeroplane ear posting, and it’s even more popular than the one of Zak with Alfred! I posted the top photo 18 hours ago…and there are 2058 reactions!

And, oh…the comments! This one in particular really got me, because I just started watching Parks and Recreation a month or so ago.

This was my response…I love Ron Swanson.

(Editor’s note: Since this is a public Facebook group, I didn’t block out the names on the screenshots in this post. If you want your name blocked out on my post, please comment and I’ll edit the photo. But if you are here from the Earplane group…thanks for all the love this week! I really needed it!)

Aby-a-Day – 18 Juni 2020: King of the Dustbowl (Thursday Things)

On one of our outside adventures, Izaak discovered a wicked awesome dustbowl at the base of a tree.

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It wasn’t in the sun, but oh, it was still perfect. And Zak was going to keep it all to himself, prepared to fight it with everything he had.

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First Lorelai came to check it out.

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Look at how Zak watches her.

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Alfred tried a sneakier method. He pretended he was scratching the tree…

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…and then tried to take it over.

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Zak was more than ready for him.

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Freddy wasn’t about to give up to a cat he outweighs by 70% after only one attempt.

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I am not sure what he was trying to accomplish with this move, but…

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…Zak was NOT falling for it.

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“Really Freddy? REALLY!?”

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“Okay, dude. Back off!”

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“Okay, that’s technically still my dust, but fine. But like a good neighbour, STAY OVER THERE.”

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“I can’t even with you right now, Freddy.”

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After his roll, Freddy made another siege on Zak’s dustbowl.

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Clearly, this attack is Freddy playing a long game.

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Obviously, it’s the old “yeah, keep your dumb dustbowl” trick.

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“Just how stupid does he think I am?”

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Freddy walked around the tree and was right back in Zak’s face. Clearly, Zak was expecting him.

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And then, adding insult to injury, Freddy had the nerve to do Zak a heckin’ blep! A BLEP! I loved this last photo so much, on Sunday I posted it to a wonderful Facebook group called this IS an airport, please announce your departure: aeroplane ear posting (as you can see in the top photo), and as of this writing, 1,130 people have reacted to it!

Some of the comments people made were brilliant, too. I laughed so hard at this thread.

I particularly love this comment thread, because indeed, this is a classic Singapura stink-eye.

(Editor’s note: Since this is a public Facebook group, I didn’t block out the names on the screenshots in this post. If you want your name blocked out on my post, please comment and I’ll edit the photo. But if you are here from the Earplane group…thanks for all the love this week! I really needed it!)

Aby-a-Day – 15 Juni 2020: More Magpies (Movie Monday)

I know I posted about magpies just yesterday, but by sheer coincidence we had another magpie encounter this afternoon.

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Björn and I were outside with the cats, when the magpies started yelling. We looked over, and sure enough, they were yelling at Alfred.

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Freddy noped out, but Izaak was very interested in what was going on up in the branches.

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The magpies yelled at Zak, and Zak yelled right back at them.

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Lorelai, of course, was also interested in the screeching birds.

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She looked like she wanted to go up after them, but she didn’t go any higher in the tree.

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Zak, on the other hand…

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…I think even Rory was impressed with how high Zak was willing to climb.

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Zak is a deceptively good climber.

Here is a video of the entire encounter with the magpies. It’s sometimes hard to see them in the leaves, but you can certainly hear them!

Aby-a-Day – 13 Juni 2020: The Ministry of Silly Runs returns (Silly Sunday)

Cats. Graceful, elegant cats.

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Until you freeze their action in 1/30 of a second.

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Then, as Dashiell demonstrates, they can look a little…well, goofy.

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Izaak, too, has a fairly silly run.

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Lorelai can look like poetry in motion…

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…or, not.

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This is her impression of a dolphin…I think? Or an otter. Something aquatic.

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And then we have Alfred.

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It’s like he was re-enacting his run at that same corner when we had snow on the ground back in March.

Aby-a-Day – 10 Juni 2020: Wordless Wednesday (Lorelai and the Cycle)

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Aby-a-Day – 8 Juni 2020: Our visit to the vet (Medical Monday)

A couple of weeks ago, I posted about our upcoming annual check-up at our veterinarian.

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As always, getting there is half the “fun.” It was particularly difficult because people in Sweden have no sense of distance, so I had to stand most of the ride to avoid getting to close to people.

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I think this was Dashiell’s first time in the stroller. He kept trying to pop through the top.

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The vet is far away, but it’s an easy trip by bus (easy, but long). We just have to change buses downtown.

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Luckily, this time we didn’t have any competition from stupid human strollers.

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Angel was first up. She’s completely healthy, but Dr. Brigitte wants us to have her good eye checked because she thought it looked a little cloudy, more cloudy than usual. I need to remember to make an appointment with the eye specialist for an examination.

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Alfred is also healthy, and I was surprised I didn’t get a lecture on how he needs to lose weight. He got some vaccinations and a prescription for Prednisone to treat his asthma. This is him on the counter…trying to get into the treat jars on the counter (Freddy? Protip: they aren’t in the sharps bin). Lorelai came after Freddy; since there was a social distancing rule (rare for Sweden), only one of us could be in the examination room, so I have no photos of her. She got a vaccine, and we discussed her future kittens.

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Izaak also needed some jabs, and one of them was a new Suprelorin chip.

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Unlike last time, Zak was not very cooperative. We actually had to purrito him.

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When it was all over, we had to wait a bit to check out…and met a curious dog who looked a lot like our neighbour, Bruno.

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When we got home, we were so exhausted and stressed that we all crashed in the bedroom (myself included). Taking five cats to the vet during a pandemic is stressful!

Aby-a-Day – 7 Juni 2020: Another encounter with Markis (Swedish Sunday)

The other day when we went outside, we happened to run into our friend and upstairs neighbour, Markis.

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Lorelai ran up to meet him first.

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Markis was not impressed.

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He insisted on social distancing himself and backed away.

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So of course Izaak felt the need to come barrelling up behind her…

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…and straight past her, right up into Markis’ face.

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Zak may have come up on Markis a little too quickly; there was a tiny little scuffle.

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“SOCIAL DISTANCING! DUDE!”

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Rory came to back Zak up, just in case.

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It wasn’t necessary.

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Markis decided to turn and run into the tall grass to get away from them. Rory could. Not. Resist. “Ooooh, big fluffy cat is running into the grass! Cool!!”

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She lost sight of him momentarily…

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…but then Markis made the mistake of raising his tail.

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And Rory literally flew after him.

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That’s the only word for it: flew.

Aby-a-Day – 6 Juni 2020: Dashiell spreads his wings (Swedish Saturday)

As I have posted before, Dashiell is a bit skittish when it comes to going outside with the other cats.

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But lately, with each outing he goes on, Dash gets a little bit braver and a little more confident. I used to have to catch him and drag him outside.

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But now he actually comes to the door with the others to go out.

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And look! Dash actually ran out to the sandbox first, and Lorelai and Izaak followed him there.

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I was so proud of him.

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He does still tend to stick to the sides of the building and the trees, though.

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Unlike the others (except Angel), he’s not gotten quite the confidence to be out in the open and run out in the middle of the yard or down the hill.

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Many cats who don’t go outside often are afraid to be in the open without any cover. The first time Kylie went out, she was afraid that there was no ceiling. It’s an instinct that I believe comes from a fear of hawks and eagles (at least it is in the Warriors books).

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It’s nice to see Dash enjoying being outside.

Aby-a-Day – 4 Juni 2020: Izaak vs the sheepskin (Thursday Things)

We have some sheepskin circles on our sofa cushions, because they look nice and they happened to be the exact same colour as the sofa. Then, when Björn’s mother died, we got a grey sheepskin patchwork square. We keep it at the end of the sofa, and the cats like to nap on it.

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Except Izaak.

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He’s got a different relationship with the sheepskin square.

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He likes to randomly attack it and kick its guts out.

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But look in the background, at Lorelai.

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Wait, what?

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Look at Rory, flying over the sofa and Zak’s battle with the sheepskin square.

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Did that just happen?

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Hm. Well. Back to grooming and fighting with the sheepskin square, then.