Aby-a-Day – July 20: Snapshots of ArtBeat (Hipstamatic Monday)

This past weekend was ArtBeat, Somerville’s infamous art festival.


As always, Jacoby and I went out to participate. It’s been a while since we’ve been out together, since Jake’s not currently doing therapy work. He really seemed to miss his stroller!


He also seemed to have missed riding the T.



At least, he seemed to be happy to be out and about meeting people and getting admired.


I have to admit, I’ve missed going places with him, too.


Once we got to Davis Square, I got our tags. This is my 16th one!



Jake got his tag, too, of course. This is his 6th ArtBeat – he’s been coming with me since 2010.


We had our traditional lunch – Redbones BBQ!


It was a bittersweet ArtBeat, though, since it’s probably the last one we’ll be able to go to.


It was a long day, and tiring in a good way. When we got home, we just relaxed in the art room, me on my cushions and Jake on his S-curve.

Aby-a-Day – July 28: Masquarade (Hipstamatic Monday)

One of the biggest attractions at ArtBeat is the vast collection of arts and crafts booths selling all kinds of alluring items.


I saw this wooden masquarade mask with distinctly Abyssinian-like markings in a woman’s hand at the Magpie booth and I dashed up and blurted out: “Do you have any more of those cat masks? I need one!”


The shopkeeper looked at me like I was a bit nutty and, bemusedly, pulled out a second cat mask.


Then she saw Jacoby in his stroller and it all made sense. This clever wooden mask on a stick is a “Silly Stick” made by Maple Landmark in Middlebury, VT. But as great as it is that the mask looks like an Abyssinian…


…the backside is a scuba mask with a small clownfish!


How perfect is this for the NEMO show next month?!

Aby-a-Day – July 25: Future’s so bright, he’s gotta wear shades (Fashion Friday)

At ArtBeat, the Magpie booth was selling Babiators, sturdy plastic sunglasses for babies.


You know I had to try a pair on Jacoby.


Oh, yeah…


Sigh…if only I could justify spending $20 on these…

Aby-a-Day – July 21: ArtBeat is hip! (Hipstamatic Monday)

While we were at ArtBeat yesterday, I remembered to take a few Hipstamatic shots as well. I don’t know why it never occurred to me before; Hipstamatic seems like the perfect platform for ArtBeat photographs!


I just loved this tiger.


And apparently I wasn’t the only one.


This was just silly. I’d found a stray pipe cleaner that had been twisted into a circle and put it on Jacoby’s head.


All hail Jake, the Pipe Cleaner Prince.


We also stopped at the Batch Ice Cream truck for a treat. They’re a local ice cream company that makes awesome ice cream with minimal ingredients.


I loved their little map of Massachusetts painted on the side of their chalkboard truck. And their ice cream is truly amazing.


Jake would have preferred we’d go to Redbones BBQ instead.


I love these guys in the background. I’m sure they were laughing at me…but so what?


There is just so much to see at ArtBeat!


The first time we went to ArtBeat, Jake rode in the little rolly-cart. He didn’t like that because he was dragging along behind me and couldn’t see where we were going.


He much prefers the stroller, where he can see everything.


I love that Jake loves to do things like this with me.

Aby-a-Day – July 20: Hatching some fun at Art Beat

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you know that Someville’s annual ArtBeat festival is something that Jacoby and I look forward to every summer. In fact, it’s a reason that we haven’t ever gone to the famous Garden State Cat Show – they always seem to fall on the exact same weekend!


I used to live a few blocks away from Davis Square, and I’ve been to every ArtBeat since I moved to Boston in 2000. I’ve only missed two, 1998 and 1999, and those I missed only because I didn’t live here yet. This year’s theme was “Hatch”…it wasn’t one of the more interactive themes they’ve ever had. Some years’ themes are more “done” than others; a couple of years ago the theme was “Red,” which inspired a lot of people to dress up. This year ArtBeat was a little less crazy than it has been in the past…but that didn’t make this year’s festival any less fun.


As always, our very first stop of the day was our friend Kim’s Stella Marie Soap booth so I could stock up on my ultimate all-time favourite Marshmallow Chocolate sugar body scrub. I stock up on this stuff every July and my supply lasts me the rest of the year.


Jake is not so impressed with the gloriously scented, handmade natural soaps…but he does enjoy collecting his pettings from Kim.


One of the more interesting things in the Square this year was the new M.U.S.C.R.A.T. Bus.


M.U.S.C.R.A.T. is short for “Multi-Use Somerville Community Roving Transport” and is intended to be a movable art space used to conduct roaming art classes, performance art or dance, and anything else the Somerville Arts Council can think of.


The bus has been tricked out with a pretty epic representation of a muskrat in autumn done by local artist Jeff McCreight. Jake was impressed with the giant rodent…impressed, or terrified. It’s a fine line…


The absolute coolest thing we saw was this lifesized papier-maché tiger.


I’m not sure why he was there (apart from his plea to “reforest his habitat”), or what he had to do with “Hatching”…but he was incredible. A lot of work went into making him.


He was extremely well done made by someone familiar with Asian art. The tiger’s eyes are straight out of a classic Chinese scroll painting.


Jake made friends with a little boy named Ben. Ben was really enjoying the tiger (his dad told me he really likes cats), and literally squealed with joy when he saw a real live kitty.


He was great with Jake, and Jake was great with him. It never ceases to amaze me how great Jake is around kids, because he doesn’t see children all that often. There are a couple of families on our floor now, but our therapy visits have almost exclusively been with adults. It’s one of the reasons I love going to ArtBeat with Jake: we get to interact with little kids.


It’s a lot of fun to watch kids pet Jake, too. For some reason, they really seem to like his ears.


My little tiger…we’ve been to five ArtBeats together, and then I went to another one with Gun-Hee. I can’t really remember what it’s like to go without an Abyssinian!

Aby-a-Day – August 12: Blase commuter cat (Hipstamatic Monday)

The thing that cracks me up most about taking Jacoby on the T is how much he takes it in stride.


He’s just all, “Lalala, here I am, riding the subway…no big deal…”


He’s such a seasoned commuter.


And he knows the names of the stops, too. When we get to the stop before our home station, he starts getting antsy, because he knows we’re getting off soon.


He’s such a seasoned commuter, it’s almost ordinary.


So I’ll throw this in to make today’s post more interesting.

Life in Davis Square

I love when I find random photos of Jacoby on the internet.

Check out Richard Chase’s Life in Davis Square photos from ArtBeat.

See anyone you recognise?