Aby-a-Day – 27 December 2020: Welcome to the rat race (Cinema Sunday)

We got the cats a remote-controlled rat toy for Christmas. We thought it would be a lot of fun for them.

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It…didn’t go quite as planned.

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I’m not sure if it was the motor noises or the crazy, self-righting wheels, but they seemed a little intimidated by the thing.

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So, Björn got the idea of putting a bit of ham on the back of the rat. Well, that got Alfred’s attention.

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And then the ham fell off.

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And…then Freddy ate the ham. So much for that idea.

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So we stopped the rat to see what they would do when it wasn’t moving.

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Dashiell grabbed it and started dragging it off.

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He was growling as he pulled it along!

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I don’t think any of us saw that coming.

Here’s the video of the whole encounter. I sped it up a little bit, so you may not be able to hear Dash growling.

Aby-a-Day – 31 July: You’re never done learning (Cartoon Tuesday)

I am endlessly amazed at how popular the Warriors series is in Germany and Holland. I mean, it’s way more popular than it is in the UK or the States. If you search Amazon.de, you can find all sorts of Warriors merchandise.

Look at all this! Sticky notes, badges, notebooks, gloves…I have the laptop stickers and I love them. You can’t get any of this on the other Amazons (.com and .uk.co), trust me. I looked.

Because I order my (English) Warriors books from Amazon.de, they send me emails when new Warriors items are released. Usually, they’re translations of the series books in German, but a few weeks ago they sent me an email about an interesting book entitled Warrior Cats – Katzenzeichnen: Von den Grundformen bis zur Clankatze (Warrior Cats – Cat Drawing: From Basic to Clan Cat).

Now, I have been drawing cats for over 50 years, and apparently I’m pretty good at it, since people like the drawings I do. But this book is amazing, even for someone like me. Because you can always learn more drawing techniques. Look at the instruction on drawing paws (well, hands, if you’re doing Abys).

The book goes into great detail about all aspects of cat life, and it even has blank pages for you to practice on. Unfortunately for me, it’s in German, and it’s a translation of the original publication…in Dutch. So there is no English edition of this book yet. Considering that the original books were English, it’s a bit interesting that the Germans and Dutch have taken to the cats so much that they’re coming up with all kinds of original items and books that aren’t available in English!

Izaak Sketch

Using some of the book’s recommendations, I did this sketch of Izaak. What do you think?