Aby-a-Day – 10 November: “I haven’t taken my Christmas lights down. They look so nice on the pumpkin” (Silly Saturday)

In Sweden, Winter time starts a week before Daylight Savings ends in the States. Additionally, not having a late November holiday like Thanksgiving to mark the beginning of the “Holiday season,” Swedes tend to start thinking about Jul lights as soon as it starts getting dark early.

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To that end, Björn found some pretty coloured ball lights on sale last month.

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Izaak was born on 26 January, and so has never seen Christmas lights before…

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…And he was fascinated by them.

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Just mesmerised.

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It was so cute the way he played with them.

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Alfred, of course, has celebrated one Christmas already, but he was curious about the lights, too.

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Somehow, he managed to get sort of entangled in them.

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Only Freddy…

Aby-a-Day – 12 October: “Unbelievable – No more going to Yankee Stadium and having to listen to ‘1918.’” (Fashion Friday Flashback)

Five years ago this month, the Boston Red Sox won their third World Series in 10 years, and of course our Jacoby wore his jersey to cheer the team on.

Well, this year the Red Sox have had an amazing season and just beat the Yankees in the first playoff round and face the Houston Astros at Fenway on Saturday night. I’m lucky in that just this year they actually started broadcasting MLB games on Swedish television! They’re shown live, which is…challenging, given that they start at 1 or 2 in the morning, but I usually DVR them and watch them the next day.

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Of course, it being October and the Sox being in the ALCS reminded me of the last Boston World Series game we watched.

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I found a bunch of photos of Jake watching that game that, apparently, I never posted here. Of course, Jake was excited to watch the game.

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Nothing like Boston during a playoff game – especially one at Fenway!

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The Dropkick Murphys sang the National Anthem. That was awesome.

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This was Game 6, and Boston was leading St. Louis 3-2.

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Checking out the Cardinals’ line-up.

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Make sure you have your bat, Jake!

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Let’s just hope that the Red Sox can get past the Astros. GO RED SOX!

Aby-a-Day – 9 October: Crossword Cats (Cartoon Tuesday)

Crossword puzzles are very popular in Sweden. There are dozens of different crossword magazines available, and all the daily newspapers also publish them. A friend sent me this one from https://www.dn.se/kultur-noje/kulturdebatt/sveriges-korsordsmakare-var-korsordstradition-ligger-snart-i-spillror/Dagens Nyheter a year ago, and I recently found it whilst I was looking for something else.

I love it, of course, because it really illustrates a FIFe show’s layout. And the breed depictions are really nicely done. I couldn’t find much out this illustration at all, sadly, but I did find the artist, Ann-Charlotte Odén, on DeviantArt, so I may send her a message asking about it.

As for the translations: The top running pair are saying, “I suggest we start a sports club for cats instead!” (He’s probably a Turkish Angora) The other cat is saying “Okay!”

“Ouch! He only had 10 points to go to 100!” says the Abyssinian.

The black silver classic tabby British Shorthair says, “That’s not the right way to hold (a cat)!” and the Cornish Rex agrees, saying, “Oj! What’s happening!?”

And the human is saying, “Ow! I pulled (a muscle) between my heel and calf!” I have no idea what that means…I suspect all of the comments are clues to the crossword puzzle itself.

Which means the answer to that last one is probably “Achilles.”

Aby-a-Day – 2 October: Strangers on a train (Cartoon Tuesday)

This is definitely not a cartoon, but a couple of weeks ago, I got this painting sent to me via Facebook Messenger, along with this note: “Hejsan. Träffade dej och din fina katt Jacoby på ett tåg här i Sverige för ca2 år sedan. Hittade visitkortet jag fick av dej häromdagen och målade ett porträtt efter fotot där, Bara för skojs skull, och ville dela med mej av resultatet. Målningen är i akvarell och A3 storlek. Hoppas ni har det bra!”

Maria quickly followed up with an English translation: “I met you and your cat (Jacoby) at a train here in Sweden 2 years ago and i found your card a couple of days ago and felt like making a painting from the photo. It’s aquarell and A3 size.”

This is the card I had given her. But isn’t that wonderful? It’s one of the sweetest, most random thing I think has ever happened because of Jake being Strollercat. I love it. Thank you, Maria!

Aby-a-Day – 27 September: Role reversal (Thursday Things)

When we were outside the other weekend, Lorelai encountered a very sweet, very well-behaved Papillon.

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At first, she was a bit on the defensive. Yet, she still approached him.

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They even almost touched noses!

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Rory wasn’t sure how she felt about that.

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Meanwhile, Izaak…

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…Zak was not having any of this dog nonsense.

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The dog’s owner tried to continue on their walk, and pulled the dog along with her.

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But Rory chased after the dog! Have you ever seen a cat chase a dog before?

Aby-a-Day – 22 September: Run like the wind (Swedish Saturday)

Lorelai and Izaak love to go on walks around our apartment buildings.

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We are teaching them to go outside with us in the områden of our apartment. We want to be able to have them come outside with us without leashes and harnesses, and to come back to us when we call them.

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So far, it’s going fairly well.

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They love going outside, there’s no question there.

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It’s fun to watch them run with no limitations, that’s for sure. Look at Zak! He’s airborne!

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They work as a team when they are outside together.

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Although Rory is a little more adventurous than Zak is.

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Look at her run!

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Her energy is boundless.

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She loves to just run as fast as she can.

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…And then, she saw the pigeon

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At first, she wasn’t sure what to do.

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But Zak did.

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It was truly impressive, watching his raw instinct take over as he stalked the pigeon (which was almost as big as he is).

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Watching him approach the bird, you would think he had done this before. He was that good.

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And then…he made his rush. It was glorious.

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Rory finally joined in. And then I noticed that there were actually two pigeons!

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But too little, too late. The pigeons were gone.

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One did remain sitting high atop a street lamp, mocking our kittens.

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Zak didn’t mind. He ran it off.

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Run, Izaak, run!

Aby-a-Day – 21 September: Arrrrrrgh! It be Talk Like a Pirate Day! (Friday Fashion Flashback)

Wednesday was Talk Like a Pirate Day. But as you know, Angel has always been our pirate.

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She has had her pirate dress, hat and eyepatch for over five years now!

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That’s kind of mind-boggling to me. It feels like we just got everything yesterday!

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But in fact, last year I had to replace the feathers on Angel’s hat because they were just starting to disintegrate.

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However, I think the new feathers look a lot better than the old ones! Feathers are a big part of the Swedish Easter celebration; they are used to make Påskris, birch twigs decorated with colourful feathers. So every spring I will be able to easily find replacement feathers for Angel…

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…as long as I can remember in October where I put them when I bought them in April!