Aby-a-Day – 29 Maj 2020: The Frankentree (Fashion Friday Flashback)

This morning, Facebook reminded me of the creation of the Frankentree that we keep on the balcony.

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Angel loves sunning herself on there.

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But then, she liked it before it was upgraded.

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Alfred and Jacoby were also ond of the Frankentree…

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…although it was a bit awkward when Freddy tried to nap in the cubby.

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Logan loved the Frankentree.

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But Angel and Lorelai continue to be the biggest fans of the Frankentree.

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Although Angel doesn’t seem to enjoy sharing it with anyone.

Aby-a-Day – 22 Maj 2020: Facebook has all the memories! It has the best memories! (Fashion Friday Flashback)

Yesterday, Facebook reminded me of the time we got bored at a cat show and put some of the hair I had groomed off Jacoby and put it on his head.

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After I did that, we noticed that the pile of hair on Jake’s bore a striking resemblance to a certain American president.

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Especially from the side.

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Jake was always such a good sport…

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…and he really could rock anything he wore, too. I miss that.

Aby-a-Day – 24 April 2020: Fancy face masks (Fashion Friday)

As everyone on the planet knows, we are experiencing a pandemic and we’re all being held hostage by a familiar virus. Unlike the rest of the world, Sweden is managing the Covid-19 situation in a…unique way. Most businesses are still open, high schools and universities are teaching online but all other schools are still in session, there are markings on the floors near the checkouts in shops, but there are no measures taken in the aisles to keep people apart. And nobody is wearing masks. But I am. I have asthma, and everytime I get a cold, it doesn’t go away. It settles in my lungs, and turns into bronchitis or pneumonia. I know how insidious coronaviruses can be. I have been reading studies of one certain type of coronavirus for twelve years now, and I am not taking any chances.

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I bought sa box of 50 semi-disposable medical masks on Amazon.de to tide me over until I can get some cuter ones. On a whim, I thought I would try one on Izaak. Whoops…sorry, Zak, you can’t see with it on like that!

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Okay, that’s better. Zak actually wore it pretty well, but I am not going to lie, I miss Jacoby. He would rocked this mask!

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Even though he’s not the pro Jake was, Zak did finally strike a couple of pretty good poses for me.

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Of course Alfred had to come check out what Zak and I were doing.

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Huh. That’s rude. Guess he’s not a fan of masks.

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Given his reaction, of course I made him model it, too. He only kept it on long enough for one good photo, though, and I didn’t have time to adjust it so it wasn’t covering his eyes. Again, sometimes I really miss Jake.

But I really want a better mask than these disposables. One of my Facebook friends sent me a link to a super cute face mask with Abyssinians wearing masks on it! I love that a blue Aby is the main cat on the mask. (There is also one with Somalis on it.)

But look what else they have! A Singapura face mask! I ordered one of each. I know they seem a bit expensive ($24.95), but each mask comes with three replaceable filter pads, to give a little more protection when you go outside, and you can always get more filters. I can’t wait to try them on!

Aby-a-Day – 27 Mars 2020: “You have to stop the Q-Tip when there’s resistance!”

I don’t remember exactly where I came across these (I think it was probably Kickstarter), but the idea of a reusable Q-Tip was very appealing to me. So when I discovered LastSwab, I had to try it.

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Originally, I was intrigued on my own behalf, because I use a Q-Tip every time I take a shower (full disclosure: They clean well, but they don’t soak up the water I get in my ears, so not perfect). But then I realised they would be awesome to use on the cats’ ears when I do their biweekly grooming (claw clipping, toothbrushing, ears, anal glands and combing). Depending on the cat, I use two to three Q-Tips per ear! So I got a LastSwab for each cat.

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Each cat has varying degrees of waxy build-up. Alfred, like Jacoby, has the dirtiest ears. Lorelai and Dashiell are next, then Angel and finally Izaak. So I used Freddy as my model.

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They are a little more “grabby” than cotton swabs, with those little nubs.

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Look how much wax they collect! Jake had chronic yeast infections in his ears, and I suspect Freddy has the same; problem is, Freddy’s insanely hard to give drops to. So I usually do an extra cleaning on his ears on the off weekends.

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On Freddy and Jake, I could use three or four swabs in a go. Add in the other cats’ ears…that’s a lot of swabs. I can get all of Freddy’s wax in one go with these. They clean easily with just soap and water, and if you think about it, it’s not much different from having a toothbrush.

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There you go, Freddy…all clean!

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Okay, Freddy…that’s a little too much enthusiasm.

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Postscript…Rory’s LastSwab case suffered a broken clip the first time I used it. I reached out to the company…and they are sending me a whole new LastSwab! All I wanted was a new case. That’s pretty great customer service!

Aby-a-Day – 20 Mars 2020: Toothy Towels (Fashion Friday)

This was back in 2017, but Björn found the cutest embroidered towels in the That’s Sew Creative shop on Etsy.

Just look at these cute designs…and don’t they look like Abys? We had been using my Yoga Cat towel on the tub, but the minute I saw these, I knew we had to have them.

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I had only two requirements…we had to have dark grey towels, and her machine needed to be able to make the Ö in Björn. Which, as you can see, she could do.

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Here’s mine. I love the bow on the tail. They make me smile every time I go into the bathroom.

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But are they Abyssinians?

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Alfred seems to think so.

Aby-a-Day – 13 Mars 2020: Coronavirus 1, St. Patrick 0 (Fashion Friday Flashback)

Boston’s St. Patrick’s Day parade has been cancelled out of concern for COVID-19. This is the first time in 26 years the parade has been cancelled. The city of Boston is also postponing the Boston Marathon next month and even the Red Sox spring training and regular season will be delayed.

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I went to my first parade when I moved to Boston in 2000, and stood in front of what at the time was a vacant building. Little did I know that I would eventually live in that very building!

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Naturally, St. Patrick’s Day and the parade was a big part of Jacoby’s life. Our apartment overlooked one of the staging areas, and Jake loved to watch the activity below. His first St. Patrick’s Day, I got him a T-shirt from a shop in Faneuil Hall. What could be more Boston than that?

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Later on, Jake added a shamrock tie and a Celtics jersey to his holiday wardrobe.

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I had actually forgotten about this shamrock sun-hat. I think he only wore it that one time, just for photos.

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He also had his shamrock patterned walking harness. When we lived on the 5th floor, we didn’t face West Broadway, so Jake and I would go downstairs to see the parade in person.

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Angel, on the other hand, was content to watch the parade on television.

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When we moved to the new apartment on the 4th floor, we could just watch the parade from our windows. I think Jake kind of missed going outside to experience it; Angel, meanwhile, was perfectly content watching the parade from our windows.

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It’s a little surreal to think of the parade just not happening. I mean, they even held it the year we had the record snowfall! Okay, it wasn’t as bad as in my cartoon, but it did snow on the day of the parade!

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The last year we lived in Boston, we just watched it from the windows again. Now, though, I kind of wish we’d gone downstairs.

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I’m pretty sure Angel wishes we’d gone downstairs, too.

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In a way, it feels a little bit right, not having the parade the first year Jake isn’t alive for it.

Aby-a-Day – 6 Mars 2020: The Big Boston Blizzard of 2015 (Friday Fashion Friday Flashback)

Five years ago this week, Jacoby and Angel experienced what would be Boston’s record snowfall for the first time.

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I couldn’t take them in the courtyard as usual because reasons. So I took them just in front of the building.

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Of course, they were fully decked out in their coats.

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It was…a less than optimal photo location. but we did our best. I am still proud to have lived in Boston the year of the record snowfall.