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 – 27 October: Treetop Battle (Silly Saturday)

Lorelai and Izaak love the top of the cat tree.

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There’s something about the danger of being so high that they can’t resist.

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Which of course means they feel the need to fight up there.

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Treetop fights are pretty funny.

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I mean, what are they fighting for? To knock the other one out of the tree? One is in the house, sure…but the other one is at the top.

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So what’s the actual conflict?

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I have no idea…but it’s a lot of fun to watch them work it out.

Aby-a-Day – 25 May: Angel, Rory and the Frankentree (Fashion Friday)

Before I moved to Sweden, Björn had an old, beat-up, second-hand cat tree for Pyret. It was one of the first things Angel discovered when we let her out of the carrier. When my things arrived from the States, my big floor-to-ceiling tree was among them, and it was installed in the corner where the old tree had occupied. The old tree was moved to the balcony, which was scheduled to be glassed in for the cats to enjoy.

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Angel was quick to claim it out there, too. But it was a little short, and I wanted the cats to be able to sit up high on the balcony, too, so I ordered this new cat tree by Dogman, a Swedish pet supply company. But when I assembled the new tree, it seemed a little sad without the cubby section, especially since it was Angel’s favourite part, and it was still perfectly good…so I got an idea.

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I combined them! I took the non-worn parts of the old tree (which was probably also a Dogman tree) – the cubby, the platform and the ladder, and put them together with the new tree and created…the FrankenTree! It worked surprisingly well, and the colours combined well, too.

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Angel loved it.

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Logan and Alfred came along and loved it, too…and of course so does Lorelai.

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(Despite the silly tongue…)

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Angel didn’t really mind sharing the tree with Logan and Freddy, but what does Angel think about sharing her tree with another girl?

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These Millennial kittens these days…no sense of boundaries.

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Angel is not above defending her territory. Although, to be honest, I don’t think Rory even noticed that Angel took a swipe at her.

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“Damn kids, get off of my tree!”

Aby-a-Day – 24 May: Graceful, agile, elegant Abys (Thursday Things)

When we went to our local DjurMagazinet, Alfred checked out the cat trees.

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They have a really good selection, but here in Europe they seem to cover cat trees with sisal and faux fur fabric rather than carpeting.

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Freddy was just happily playtesting the trees when…

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…This happened. Not gonna lie, I laughed. He totally reminded me of this cartoon I did 5 years ago!

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But I mean, look at his feet (and hand)! I had to highlight them…because, well…look at them!

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Meanwhile, Lorelai was having trouble managing her new harness and leash.

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Then she decided she wanted to be up in my lap.

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Ambition and ability are, sadly, two very different things.

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She wasn’t fazed, though.

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Quite the opposite, in fact. She was gathering herself up for another attempt.

Aby-a-Day – May 11: World’s smallest show cat (Miniature Monday)

Of course I had to take some photos of the Jacoby mini-me while I was at the Seacoast show.

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We visited the Arubacat booth, where he tested out their excellent cat trees.

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He also tried out a scratching post.

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Then, even though he wasn’t entered, he stood on the judge’s table!

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(And look who’s in the background!)

Also, remember the other custom ball-jointed doll I was having made by Ana VonBorowsky? Well, he is finished, and she is shipping him to me today! I absolutely cannot wait to see him in person. Of course, he’ll be featured in this blog when he gets to Boston, but if you want to see a few photos of him – and his wardrobe – before then, check out Ana’s gallery on DeviantArt!

Aby-a-Day – March 25: Wordless Wednesday (Angel is weird)

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Aby-a-Day – March 21: “Beam” (Saturday Photo Hunt)

This week’s Photo Hunt subject is “Beam.”

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We have open-beam ceilings in our apartment. They are part of the original building which was built in 1906. The wall-climbers we’ve installed in the living room let the cats get right up next to the ceiling.

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Apparently, this is not good enough for our Jacoby.

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He’s starting to regularly walk on the heating duct. I have some sisal pads that we need to install up there to give him something to grip.

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The problem is that now the duct doesn’t seem to be enough for Jake, either.

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Now he’s got his eye on the sprinkler pipe!

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And I mean, he’s really trying to walk on that pipe!

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I really don’t know what to do about this. When I see him doing it, I tell him NO, and I try to get him down with the promise of treats.

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That usually works.

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I just wonder if he’s trying this when I’m NOT home. You know he probably is.

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“What?”

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“Oh, all right, I’ll get off the pipe. Sheesh, Mom.”

The thing is, I have no idea why Jake wants to walk on the sprinkler pipe. There’s nothing over there for him to sit on or do. He can’t even really look out the window from up there. I think he just wants to see if he can do it. Typical male.

Aby-a-Day – January 25: This shelf isn’t big enough for the two of us…

Angel is very fond of the wallclimbers we have installed.

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She seems to feel very confident when she’s on one of them.

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Well, that is, until…

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Wham! A wild tortie appears!

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Angel uses ignore.

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It’s not very effective!

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In fact, it seems to have the opposite effect.

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It seems like the more Angel ignores Tessie, the pushier Tessie gets.

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Luckily, this isn’t one of the higher shelves.

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Otherwise, I’d have been worried that Angel would have been knocked off.

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Tessie doesn’t seem to appreciate the fact that she has an audience. Wonder what she’d be doing to Angel if I hadn’t been there?

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I don’t really know what Tessie wants. There are, after all, three other shelves she could go sit on.

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This is what Tessie does, too…she just sort of looks at Angel…

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…And Angel just cringes.

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They have such an odd dynamic, these two.

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Well, that escalated quickly.

Aby-a-Day – January 8: All together now

Well, here’s something you don’t see every day!

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Angel not hissing at Jacoby!

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Also, Tessie not picking on Angel!

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(There is a reason we call Tessie “Me Too”…)

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Of course, you know something like this wouldn’t last long. Tessie got bored and hopped down, but even so, Angel gets nervous being too close to the other cats for too long, unless there’s food involved.

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And since there was no food forthcoming…

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…Angel wasn’t about to hang around any longer than she had to.

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She always feels safer up high…

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…where she can keep her EYE on Jake!

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Jake of course has no idea the drama and the turmoil that’s happening just above his head. Angel’s issues with Jake are definitely a one-way street!

Aby-a-Day – October 23: This shelf isn’t big enough for the both of us!

Angel doesn’t like to share.

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She especially doesn’t like to share with Jacoby.

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Even though he was actually on that shelf first…

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“Wait…What just happened?”
Talk about a hit and run…Jake was so confused.

Aby-a-Day – October 8: Wordless Wednesday (Jacoby and his brother)

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Aby-a-Day – August 17: Wallflowers

I thought this was really cute.

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Jacoby and Angel were both up on the cat shelf that houses the memorial wool sculpture of Gun-Hee.

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It’s not often that Angel will stay on the same wall climber with Jake (she was there first and he joined her) so I was glad I managed to capture this.

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It’s the closest I’ll ever come to a family portrait of all three Abys together.

Aby-a-Day – July 19: “Sheer” (Saturday Photo Hunt)

This week’s Photo Hunt subject is “Sheer.”

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Since we moved into our new apartment, we have these wonderful wall-mounted cat shelves in the living room.

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As you can imagine, they are very popular.

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Sometimes, they’re a little too popular. Kylie was in the top box, and Jacoby wanted to be there.

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So naturally, Jake had to take it up a notch.

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I mean, if someone is in the highest space, you just have to go higher, right?

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And if “going higher” means you climb up onto a precarious, round, shiny metal pipe with no traction or grip, then hey, so be it.

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But if her were to lose his footing, it would be a pretty sheer drop, wouldn’t it?

Aby-a-Day – March 27: Heavenly Angel

It didn’t take Angel long to investigate the wall-mounted cat tree.

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She may not have been the first to go to the top…

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…but she was no less intrepid than those who had gone before.

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She just waited for all the excitement to die down before she started her exploration.

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She went straight up to the top and surveyed her territory.

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The problem was that annoying little brother Jacoby had to come up, too, and see what she was doing.

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And so did big sister Tessie.

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This is the sort of situation Angel hates…being stuck between the two of them. She kept her eye on the pair of them, though.

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Of course, Jake just wanted to play…

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…and Angel doesn’t.

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It’s not every cat who can take a hissing in the face in his stride, but Jake knows when to back off (usually).

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“I wasn’t doing anything! Honest!”

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A truce is finally reached, and everyone enjoys their own shelf in relative peace.

Aby-a-Day – March 23: Soaring to new heights

The new part finally arrived and we were able to finish the last wall-mounted cat tree box! Jacoby could not wait for it to be built.

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Here he is waiting impatiently with the drill/screwdriver.

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“How am I supposed to get up here?”

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“This is where the new shelf should go, Dad!”

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Finally, the last shelf is up!

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Jake and Tessie wasted no time climbing to the very top.

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But when Jake got the to the uppermost box, he didn’t want to stop climbing.

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So he didn’t.

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He just kept going, and ventured out onto the ventilation duct…

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…boldly going where no cat has gone before.

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We’re going to need to put some sort of grippy material on that duct if he wants to go up there on a regular basis, though. It’s rounded and, I’m sure, very slippery with nothing for even grabby Aby hands to hold onto.

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I’d have to say that the wall-mounted cat trees are definitely a raging success! Jake and Tessie approve!

Aby-a-Day – March 15: “Deluxe” (Saturday Photo Hunt)

This week’s Photo Hunt subject is “Deluxe.”

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When we finally get it all done, we’ll have a deluxe cat apartment with all sorts of climbing and sleeping choices.

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The sky will be the limit!

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And believe me, Jacoby cannot wait!

Aby-a-Day – March 9: Update – Climbing the Walls

As I mentioned a while back, we’re installing Designer Pet Products’ Sophia Wall-Mounted Cat Tree (which uses a blue Aby as their model). We will have four of them (two pair), but one hasn’t been mounted yet as it came missing a part.

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In the meantime, though, Jacoby checked out the lowest one before we moved in.

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He’s smiling!

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I think he likes it! Stay tuned for more updates once we get that missing shelf up.

Aby-a-Day – February 20: Catification chez nous

As most of you know by now, we are moving to a new apartment in our building. It’s exciting, and a lot of work. Our building has an open plan, and when the interiors were first built out, the original buyers (which we were, also, in our current apartment) had options as to how the units were built out. In our case, the optional second bedroom wasn’t built out…but we wanted it, so we’re having it built back in according to the original plans.

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Of course, a new apartment affords us a chance to create a haven not only for ourselves, but for the cats as well. While my husband won’t let me go completely crazy the way they did in The Cats’ House or the $35,000 Complete Cat House, or get the German Cat Climbing Furniture, but we are creating something of a Cat Superhighway in our new home.

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Originally, there was an open space between the living room and the middle room.

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We had that made into a solid wall. And we’re installing two sets of Sophia Cat Shelves alongside the television.

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One hasn’t been mounted yet because it has a missing piece, so that’s why there are only three on the wall right now.

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Look how high the top one is! Jacoby is going to love this.

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The new middle room is going to be my art room, and it will also have a television on the wall (I watch TV while I work instead of listening to music). My original concept was this:

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But we decided not to surround the TV with shelves, so instead of the Hemnes piece, we opted for IKEA’s Bestå TV stand. The cool thing about Bestå is that you can arrange pieces on the IKEA website to see how they’ll look.

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This is what our setup should look like (I’m not entirely sure about the doors, though).

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Then, we’ll add a few Ekby Tryggve shelves and Valter brackets, painted to match the wall.

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I painted them all myself on Monday.

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And this is what my workroom wall should look like!

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This was the concept I had for our bedroom. It was to be custom-built, but that proved too expensive.

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I came up with a way of assembling different sizes of Expedit units to create the same staircase effect for a lot less money. The people at IKEA were pretty impressed, actually.

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It’s 8 squares by 8 squares, 10 feet by 10 feet. It should work well.

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And it should look something like this. I can’t wait to build it and see what Jake thinks!

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Because right now, he thinks this is an awesomely high place to sit. He has no idea what’s in store for him in a couple of weeks!

Aby-a-Day – October 1: “And you can’t return them, because they’re covered in cat spit” (Cartoon Tuesday)

Tessie really does sit on open laptops. All the time. Jacoby doesn’t buy huge $200 cat trees on Amazon, however.

As far as I know.

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(And when I did the screenshot, there really was only one of those cat trees was left in stock.)

(Click cartoon to embiggen, or you can view all cartoons in Slideshow mode on Flickr.)

As seen on Hauspanther: Aby Paradise in San Diego

Earlier this week, Hauspanther shared a marvelously catified loft apartment. It’s a wonder example of what you can do with shelves and catwalks, even in a small space (this apartment is only 650 square feet)!

Of course, Hauspanther posts about catified living spaces all the time…but this time, the cats who get to play with all these fantastic furnishings are Abys! Someday, we’re going to catify our apartment for the cats…