Aby-a-Day – 15 July: Playtime for kitties! (Cinema Sunday)

It has been crazy hot here in Sweden this summer – like, Boston summer hot. We just aren’t used to this here; in Sweden, not only do most places not have air conditioning, but they don’t even have an air circulation system. It’s hotter indoors than outdoors during the heat of the day. So, we took Jacoby, Alfred, Lorelai and Izaak outside the first weekend Zak was with us. We took our Ferocious Friends cat toy with us (we met them at the Somerville CopyCat Festival five years ago). It’s really a great toy to take outside . it’s very sturdy and durable…and the cats love it!

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As you can see by Rory’s stalk-and-pounce.

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Freddy, too, was unable to resist its siren’s call.

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At one point, almost all the cats were playing with the toy…everyone except Jake.

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But really, it was mainly Zak and Rory…take a look at the video to watch them play with it.

Aby-a-Day – 10 July: The Girl with the Aby and Singa Tattoo (Cartoon Tuesday)

You might recall a few weeks ago I was about to go in and get a magpie tattoo on my arm and plan my next tattoo with Linus, my new tattoo artist here in Slövde. Linus is amazing, and tomorrow I am going to get it coloured in. I can’t wait! Since the 21st, I’ve had a half-done, just black lines and shading. It’s going to be amazing to finally have it finished.

In the meantime, I have worked up two better-coloured versions of my original sketch. The one above was coloured in on my iPad Pro using pencil and an incredible app called Art Set which works well…except it hasn’t got layers. So I did more colouring using Photoshop…and the result is above.

Then I thought my rough-sketched maple leaves, pussy willows and cherry blossoms were kind of…lazy. So I found some Photoshop brushes and line art and created a better background. At least I have something to show Linus tomorrow during my appointment.

Aby-a-Day – 19 June: Tattoo you (Cartoon Tuesday)

I have wanted to get a tattoo to commemorate Gun-Hee for years, but I never came up with a design. And then I got Logan, and he also died because of FIP. So my tattoo idea changed. It needed to include both Gun-Hee and Logan. So I came up with the above sketch. I am actually getting a tattoo on Thursday by Linus at Magic Man Tattoo here in Skövde…not cats, but magpies. I have always loved magpies, and I had one on my SCA arms (sable, on a maple leaf argent, a magpie displayed gules, marked and breasted argent (or, in other words, a black shield with a white maple leaf with a red magpie on it).

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It looks like this…this is an enamel piece I made in university, sometime around 1988. But I digress. When I go in for my magpie tattoo, I want to talk to Linus about my next tattoo…the one I have wanted since Gun-Hee died.

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This is my first colourised version of the sketch; I want to make a second version before I see Linus, but I’m not sure if I’ll have time to do it before Thursday. I can’t decide about the banner; I want to have something about FIP, but I don’t know if I like the location of the banner no matter where I put it. I want to have it done on it on my right calf. I am really pleased with the way Logan’s profile turned out, and Gun-Hee looks like Jacoby…but still looks like himself (it’s hard to explain). I can’t wait to hear what Linus says about it!

Aby-a-Day – 17 April: When we got married (Cartoon Tuesday)

I had this post scheduled long before I even knew Logan was sick…But I will leave it here and come back to my Logan eulogy tomorrow. Thank you all for your comments…I read all of them if I don’t always respond. Just know that Björn and I are grateful for all of you.)

Tomorrow is the second anniversary of Björn’s and my wedding. Last year, Emma drew this picture of what she thought our wedding looked like. Okay…Jacoby wasn’t there, and my hair isn’t that long…but otherwise it’s pretty accurate!

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This is what we really looked like. See? Pretty close, right?

Aby-a-Day – 14 April: Number nine…number nine…number nine…

Today is Jacoby’s 9th birthday.

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We celebrated with the usual Poesie cat food cake.

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I barely got the candle lit before he started eating.

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I know we all learned from Jungle Book that cats are afraid of fire..

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…but that is apparently not the case when there is meat attached to that fire.

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I hope he didn’t singe too many whiskers.

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I had to blow out his candle, he was so eager to eat.

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Um, Jake? You don’t need to open your mouth THAT wide…

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Angel came to share some cat food cake.

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Apparently the way-too-wide-open eating mouth thing is a general Aby trait. Chill, Angel. It’s just food.

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Finally Alfred joined the party.

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My three Abys, ladies and gentlemen…foodaholics!

Aby-a-Day – 3 April: My Three Abys (Cartoon Tuesday)

I really love old, classic television from the 50’s and 60’s. Shows like Get Smart, Dick Van Dyke, Dobie Gillis and Donna Reed are my catnip. I grew up watching them (some as they were aired, the older ones as reruns after school) and I miss the days when Nick at Night* would show them endlessly. I wish they would play them now, There’s a whole generation that’s missing out on these shows.

I also liked watching My Three Sons, because I was mesmerised by the opening credits. One day I said something about “my three Abys,” and, well…this happened.

*If you also watched Nick at Night in the late 80’s and early 90’s…you may remember the words to the My Three Sons theme song…

…You’re welcome.

Aby-a-Day – 31 May: Birthday memories (Cartoon Tuesday)

Tomorrow is my birthday…again. And as my personal New Year’s Day, I’ve always reveled in it.

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Dressing cats since 1981…oh, yes. Actually, this was only a couple of months before I got my first all-mine, raised from scratch, leash-trained, bike-riding, boykitten Sgt. Pepper, a chocolate Siamese and white (what now would be a Snowshoe) who was also my first real CFA show cat (HHP, of course). Mary and I were both into cats and the Beatles (clearly).

(Pepper was named because Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band was originally released on my birthday in 1967, and as such was my favourite album.)

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And cameras. I’m not sure who these cats are (her name seems to have been Betsy), but I think they may have been Mary’s cats.

This fascinates me…I drew these 35 years ago, almost to the day. My basic style really hasn’t changed all that much, has it?