Aby-a-Day – 11 Juni: Happy 14th Birthday, Angel!

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Even though we’re pretty sure what day is Angel’s real birthday, we celebrate it on 11 June.

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Even though she’s done this since her second birthday in 2009, the candles still make her a little nervous.

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A fear she gets over with pretty quickly when food is involved. I had to blow those candles out pretty quickly to avoid singed whiskers…or worse.

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Once the candles were out, though…she didn’t hesitate to dig into her “cake.” I can’t believe she’s 14 years old.

Aby-a-Day – 3 Juni: How I spent my birthday (Thursday Things)

Björn asked me what I wanted to do for my birthday. I said, “go to the second-hand store and to eat at Max (Sweden’s best burgers)“. And so we did.

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Björn gave me a Schleich Bengal (I collect Schleich cats)…

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…a paint-by-numbers kit and some vintage cat books.

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At the second-hand store I scored a beautiful Egyptian cat statue (which Lorelai was quite taken with)…

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…and a Rosa Ljung ceramic cat.

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But the BEST thing we found was when we checked out a new pet store in town, Dogman. There I found FREEZE-DRIED Vaisto cat food (I have been wanting to give Angel freeze-dried instead of raw, but couldn’t find it in Sweden), some dried chicken treats, and an interesting duck “cat sausage” that I am hoping Izaak will eat, because it will be easier to travel with that than with frozen raw food.

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AND we found 1kg bags of frozen chicken necks! We had been buying Vaisto Mush necks in 800g bags, but they’ve been in short supply lately, and these are much better (and cheaper). Zak, as you know, LOVES his necks! All in all, not a bad birthday.

Aby-a-Day – 1 Juni: Beware of the cat (Cartoon Tuesday)

Today is my birthday! Yesterday, I got this sign from my friend Meg. I absolutely love it…I just need to figure out where to put it. Thank you, Meg!

Aby-a-Day – 30 Mars: Happy Birthday to my sister, Karen! (Cartoon Tuesday)

My sister’s birthday is tomorrow. I got her a card, but things being what they are, I didn’t mail it in time. So, I reckoned I’d just sent it to her electronically. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I always draw a little cartoon in the cards I send people. But if I’m Messaging my sister her card, what’s the best way to add my traditional drawing?

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With Procreate and Photoshop, of course! And this card drawing is better than most, because I was actually able to do a sketch beforehand. Usually, I just freehand the drawing in ink.

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This is the ink version, done in Procreate.

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If you’re interested, you can watch the Procreate time-lapse video of the sketch and ink on Flickr. Click the image to view the video in another tab.

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And here is the inside of the card that my sister will get tomorrow. The Swedish translates to: “If you were a cat, you’d be turning a hundred and eleventy-twelve years! Congratulations on your Birthday!”

Aby-a-Day – 10 Februari: Wordless Wednesday (Happy 3rd birthday, Lorelai!)

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Aby-a-Day – 6 Februari: Photobombing Freddy (Silly Saturday)

When I did Alfred’s birthday photoshoot, I started out by myself (Kalle came and helped me later), so I was trying to manage the cake in one hand and the camera in the other…all whilst trying to keep Freddy from eating it before I could get the candles lit. This was an accidental shot, but I thought it was so cute the way Angel was patiently waiting for her snack, so I kept it.

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Don’t worry, Angel. You’ll get some, too.

Aby-a-Day – 4 Februari: Happy 4th Birthday, Alfred! (Thursday Things)

Today is Alfred’s fourth birthday! I can’t believe he’s four already. He was very excited about his “cake,” too.

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The candles, however, gave him pause.

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For about fifteen seconds.

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Freddy seemed about ready to eat his cake despite the flames, so I blew them out.

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Then he really tucked in. At least this year, no candles were eaten on Freddy’s birthday.

Aby-a-Day – 28 Januari: Izaak’s birthday present (Thursday Things)

Izaak turned three years old on Tuesday, and I got him a little black chirpy bird made by the same company that made the favourite, beloved chirpy mouse he got for his first birthday.

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He knew what it was immediately and wanted to play with it immediately, even before we pulled out the little plastic battery thingy.

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And once it started making noises…look out!

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Usually, Zak prefers light-coloured toys, but he really liked this little black woodpecker.

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It picked it up and carried it off. He loves to carry his mousies and birdies.

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Happy third birthday, little man!

Aby-a-Day – 27 Januari: Wordless Wednesday (Happy 3rd birthday, Izaak!)

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Aby-a-Day – 4 Januari: Happy 2nd birthday, Dashiell!

Today is Dashiell’s second birthday, and of course he got the usual cat food cake. He was a lot less intimidated by the flame than he was last year.

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If anything, he was almost too unintimidated. We were afraid he was going to singe his ears!

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We gave him his cake in the bedroom, for two reasons: one, he was already on the bed and he feels secure in there; and two, to protect the other cats from trying to eat his cake before he had a chance to even sniff it (and by “other cats,” I mean Alfred).

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Izaak, however, insisted on being with Dash for moral support. I reckoned that was okay, because Zak doesn’t really like regular wet cat food.

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So Dash got to celebrate with his best friend.

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Zak did check out the food…but once he sniffed it, he retreated, uninterested. Maybe he’ll change his mind in three weeks when it’s his birthday.

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“Oh, well…more for me!”

Aby-a-Day – 29 September 2020: Happy 80th birthday, Inger! (Cartoon Tuesday)

Björn’s ex’s mother, Inger, is celebrating her 80th birthday this weekend. She always loved Jacoby, and Björn found a lovely cat-themed birthday card for her. This is the cover of the card.

The design is repeated inside the card, so I added a little sketch of Jake to the group of cats for her.

Aby-a-Day – 16 September 2020: Wordless Wednesday (Today would have been Gun-Hee’s 14th birthday)

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Happy 17th birthday, Tessie!

Today is Tessie’s 17th birthday! Can you believe it? Apart from her eyesight, which seems to be failing, she’s very healthy and happy back in Boston. I miss her, but she’s with her BFF Kylie. Happy birthday, Tessie!

Aby-a-Day – 21 Juli 2020: Happy 10th birthday, Emma! (Cartoon Tuesday)

Björn’s daughter Emma’s 10th birthday is on Thursday. Usually, she and her mom come here to celebrate and Björn makes her a special cake. But because of Covid-19, that’s not happening, so Björn mailed her a birthday card today. As usually, I did a quick cat sketch…it’s meant to be Izaak, but meh. Also rethinking my choice of gold pen. But here it is.

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 – 11 Juni 2020: Happy 13th birthday, Angel! (Thursday Things)

Despite strong evidence to the contrary, 11 June is the day we celibrate Angel’s birthday, and today she is 13.

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Despite having done this eleven times before, Angel was still a bit wary of the candles.

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She got over it pretty quickly. You know, food…Abys…

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I blew out her candles, but she was still a little skeptical.

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But eventually Angel tucked in.

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Once she started to eat, it was game over.

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And now, she is a woman.

Happy birthday, Kylie!

Today is Kylie’s 15th birthday! She and Tessie are both healthy and happy back in Boston.

Happy Birthday, Jacoby…

…it should have been your 11th birthday today. I will always love you, Strollercat.

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Aby-a-Day – 9 Mars 2020: Happy birthday, Logan

Today would have been Logan’s third birthday had he not gotten FIP.

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We only got to light one candle for him.

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He only got one birthday present.

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I know we have great cats, and I love Izaak, and Dash and Lorelai…but sometimes I miss Logan.

Aby-a-Day – 7 Mars 2020: Happy Birthday, Kalle and Björn! (Swedish Saturday)

Since Kalle’s birthday is today, and Björn’s birthday is the 10th, we generally celebrate them both together. Björn always makes the cake…and this year, he made a Coronavirus cake.

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Kalle is is turning 17, so instead of candles, Björn put 17 gumdrop Coronaviruses on the cake instead. Because, you know…blowing out candles would spray germs all over the cake, right?

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Izaak says, “Really? A Coronavirus cake? Do you really think that’s appropriate?”

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Björn did a really good job on the viruses, though.

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Lorelai wanted some of the viruscake.

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“Look, mom! I am washing my hands and everything!”

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“What do you mean, NO?” Rory is channelling her inner Abernathy here.

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In no way related to the Coronavirus, but oddly apropos, my birthday gift to Björn was a Swiss Army gas mask from WWII. I ordered it in December (after getting him a Swiss Army pair of snow goggles for Christmas from the same seller), way before we knew about the pandemic.

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Björn was pleased with his gift.

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…and then he started posing with props.

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Emma was really happy to get to spend time with the cats.

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Happy birthday, Kalle and Björn!